Welcome to a Model Article by Anthoney Ferraiolo, originally posted on discountgamesinc.com
Treewalking with Ravagers
There probably isn’t a unit more near and dear to my heart than Tharn Ravagers. I have played them since I began playing the game, being the first unit I bought and painted; even played them in my first Kromac build running his Tier (before I knew what that was)! All that silliness aside, I have grown a real appreciation for this unit and thought they would be a great topic for the model redemption discussion.
I prefer playing the unit full fledged with the UA and WA; as I believe one of their best, and relatively unique assets, is the high model count (8 total) for an 8 wound infantry unit. Their defensive stat line does leave a bit to be desired at DEF 13 ARM 14, however I think this is a bit over stated. They are not easily taken off the board if given the right delivery system. When that is done right, they will get the alpha and there are few things in the game that hit harder: MAT 9, POW 15 on the charge is quite simply… amazing. I can make a case for them to be one of the hardest hitting units in the game, and more importantly they are highly accurate. That stat line can, and has, killed casters and locks. Moreover they are equally as effective versus infantry as they are versus heavies; 4 of them can as easily scrap a heavy as take down nearly a full unit thanks to the Heart Eater mechanic. Even at MAT 7 POW 13 they can rifle most infantry in the game. They hit hard enough to wipe opposing ‘bulky’ infantry off the table; they do approximately 8 damage per Ravager vs ARM 18, that one shots pretty stout 8 box infantry; while hitting DEF 15 on 6’s which tags most high DEF models!!! Many times there is a Ravager or two lurking around in the end game that has a corpse token and can get a boosted MAT 9 charge off in the secondary line, or even the caster/lock.
I can hearing you complaining now, “sure they are great IF they get there, how do you get them there???” Fair question; so let’s run the list: pBaldur has the Feat, Cassius has his Feat, Grayle can make them Stealth with his Feat, pKaya can Occultate them, eKrueger has Stormwall, pKrueger has Deflection (better than you think), Kromac has Inviolable Reslove, pMorvahna has Restoration, Mohsar has Pillars, and eMorvahna… well you’ve seen that work already :). Point is, I just ran the list of nearly every Warlock in the faction and they ALL have a reasonably solid way of delivering them. I know, I’m saying you should use a Feat, in many cases, to help deliver them… is that really correct? YES!!! Once they arrive at the opposing lines they are absolutely devastating and not so easily removed. Not to mention they take so much board position quickly which can give you a decisive advantage in scenario play.
Beyond all that help from Warlocks, they help themselves by having AD and being SPD 6 with Reach. So on turn 1, with full run, they are 25”-28” up the board; well over half the board with one move!!! They can effectively threat 36”-39” on the 2nd turn; put a different way that’s basically the opposing deployment zone. Speaking of threat, here’s a fun threat extension fact: Hunters Mark works on them too! How bout a sweet 13” threat (15” with Mirage)!!! Other delivery mechanisms, how about simply deploying to a flank? Often that is where the bulk of the terrain is while limiting LOS and angels to them as they cross the board. On almost every board you can nearly always find a forest to run them up behind. It’s amazing to have them sit behind a forest, threatening everything on the other side, knowing your opponent has literally no way to deal with your beat stick unit when LOS is completely blocked.
Thanks to all that threat and SPD, they can really play havoc on an opponents scenario plans, and be a key to a sweet jam technique for your Circle list. They draw attention, if delivered using the mechanisms above, they will not only make a strong alpha but with Reach and more beef than a single wound infantry unit, they will make it so your opponent must deal with them. This inadvertently becomes a delivery system for the rest of your army AND starts the process of jamming your opponent out of the scenario. This, may in fact, be their strongest asset; they have won me many games via scenario thanks to their strong ability to jam consistently.
So what other complaints to you have? 13 Points is too much? Too much for what? A unit that is super strong in melee vs both infantry and heavies, vs high DEF and high ARM, takes and grants board position, is hard to stop, can kill casters and locks, be strong in scenario, moves quickly, has Reach, has Advance Deployment, 8 boxes, Pathfinder, ignores forests in every way (including models and LOS), is Fearless, has the ability to buy additional attacks, as well as boost attack and damage rolls… Which part isn’t worth the points? The whole package must be considered when evaluating their true worth.
I admit that I am biased towards them, as I do love my Ravagers. In my experience it’s hard to find 8 bodies that will do more for the points than these guys. They were a big part of some of my biggest successes in this game, and I strongly encourage you, if you haven’t done so already, try them out. Put them in a list where they can be delivered and give them an honest chance to be successful. Once you do, you may well be impressed and find you want some more treewalking!