That Bloody Crow
Me again and this time I’ve decided to focus on the mascot that my mate John used to think was the 2nd worst in the game. (He thought it was the worst, then I showed him Salt)
I thought he was wrong then and this is why!
I think Dirge is a fantastic mascot that fits with the Morticians game plan of disruption and control and although I’m totally fanboying the idea of Vile Swarm now we know its stats, I still think that Dirge has the edge. I’ll cover Vileswarm once I’ve had a few games with it as I think that he and Veteran Graves will make an interesting pairing. Without research though, I’m going to focus on Dirge.
WARNING: INCOMING OPINION! Dirge should always be your choice if Cosset or Silence is on the pitch. (As a side note, if Silence isn’t on the pitch…WTF!) The synergies between these three are so good that playing them without each other is like going to see a film and not getting ice cream.
Ok, but lacking something…
Breaking that down, here’s what stands out to me.
Flying and 8/10 MOV. That makes Dirge the most manoeuvrable thing in Guild Ball. The ability to ignoring all terrain and ground means it can go get a scattered ball 11” away and not give a flying frog about barriers, obstacles, forests or even chubby fishermen captains getting their legs hacked off.
Dark Doubts! Get that bird up in your opponents grill! Taking it out immediately costs them 4 momentum and forces them to use up there momentum because of the combined threat of Obulus and his Legendary and the bird being another -4 momentum if they go get it!
Momentous Singled Out or 1 Non-momentous damage on 1. Momentous 1” dodge or Non-Mom tackle on two. I’ll get to that in a minute 😉
Tac 2 seems a bit weak sauce, well…. it does
Can have 2 Influence, that’s enough for a charge! I recon there’s a thing there and I’ll explore that later as well.
Dirge the Destroyer!
As we can see by this, Dirge as a damage dealer is a ridiculous idea, but Dirge as an early activation (1 or 2 usually) to get stuff rolling is an amazing idea.
Tac 2 seems crap, but 2 Influence can give it a charge and that’s Tac: 6. Which I know still seems rubbish but Dirge’s playbook is only 2 long so actually it’s on par with a lot of other players when looking for a wrap.
Take Ghast for example:
He also has a playbook that’s the same as his TAC. So rather than focusing on ‘it’s only TAC: 2’ let instead focus on what we can get for that TAC: 2!
Let’s choose an average DEF ARM combo, DEF: 4 with ARM 1 sounds about right. I recon Boiler needs a spanking from Cosset so let’s go!
Example 1: Dirge goes first!
Dirge charges him!
6 Dice against Def 4/1 according to the TAC vs. DEF sheet on Ozball means we are likely to score 2 Successes! That’s a Momentous Singled Out!
Boiler now has to deal with the bird, if he just takes the parting blow then TAC:4 (2+2 for parting blow) gives success so that 1 point of damage and then the bird follows him! To crowd him out and be a pain. Or he can just thump the bird but has TAC: 5 vs DEF: 5 averages 2 success, which fair play is 2 momentous (3 if Ox is within 4”) but that’s still 2 or 3 attacks he has to waste on the bird to kill it and at the end of that he loses all that lovely momentum he gained and is still Singled Out!
Which now gives Ghast a 12 Dice charge without Dirge being there or 13 dice charge if it is, bonus time that bad boy (remember that momentous Singled Out?) and it is a mighty 14 dice! 13/14 dice Dice is an awe inspiring 6-7 successes according to the table (if my maths holds up) in either case The Unmasking is coming for you Boiler and the Butchers are starting to be pushed around a bit. Ghast with 3 Inf can get another attack providing you don’t push Boiler out of melee with The Unmasking and is TAC: 8 due to Singled Out. 3 successes would be Momentous KD.
So far (assuming he just ran away from Dirge and took the 1pt of damage and got followed. Boiler has taken 4 damage and is now on DEF: 3 ARM: 1
Cosset on 1 inf can easily charge in and do him in on an awe inspiring TAC: 15 charge! (4 + Crazy (3) + Singled Out (2) + 2 mates (2), +charge (4)) vs DEF: 3 and ARM: 1
9 Successes (again, if my maths holds up) as an average gives Cosset 4 damage up to 5 due to Dirge (see how much he’s doing here? Ganging up, Singled Out… Lush!) And a wrap for 2 momentous damage up to 3 from Dirge. That’s 8 Damage! Boiler is on 2 health…
Second attack from Cosset is on a jaw dropping TAC: 11 (4 + Crazy (3) + Singled Out (2) + 2 mates (2))
That’s an average of 4 successes, Momentous 3 (up to 4, thanks Dirge!) and that’s Boiler taking a trip to the dugout for medical attention!
The difference of Singled Out and Ganging Up from Dirge adds 3 dice to all the subsequent TAC rolls, which is significant in my opinion.
It’s the Cosset charge that needs that 3 to get Boiler, without the +3 TAC from Singled Out and Ganging Up she doesn’t wrap, and although she still hits for 4 Damage (or 5 if Dirge is within 4”), it’s going to take her to have 2 influence to make the kill rather than 1.
That’s an influence I would rather have on Silence for Shutout.
Example 2: Dirge bought a ticket on the pain train!
It’s later in the game and Boiler is looking beaten up on 2 Health and is KD and is currently being crowded out by 2 mates. Probably Obulus and Ghast.
TAC 8 charge by Dirge (2 + Charge (4) + 2 mates (2)) against DEF 3 ARM 1 gives an average of 4 successes. Correct me if I’m wrong but hasn’t Dirge just taken out Boiler?
Yup, wrap for 2 damage. Now why wouldn’t you just send in Cosset or Silence?
Maybe because you need those guys to perform their roles elsewhere and it gets Dirge up in the face of the enemy. Where it can threaten their momentum.
It’s almost daring them almost to come and get Dirge, but instead…BOOM! The Cosset trap gets sprung and the pain train is unleashed or the Obulus show goes off and who knows what happens next!
In a recent game against my mate who was playing his ‘Furious’ line up of Obulus, Dirge, Silence, Rage, Cosset and Minx he knocked down my Rage and them charged a ‘confidence’ and ‘tooled up’ infused Dirge in to me and did a Singled Out and 4 damage! I thought, why on earth would you do that? But actually, it left Cosset to finish the job while Minx and Silence beat on a shut out Shank…
Example 3: Dirge plays catch.
After mortician goal, the ball is scattered out and Dirge can threaten on 11” (10” MOV and 1” melee) so off he goes flying over the imaginary barrier that’s in the way!
CHAAAARGE! TAC: 6 vs. Boilers DEF: 4 ARM: 1 (I know, I’m picking on him a lot today aren’t I!)
An average of 2 successes is a TACKLE to be a pain in the ass or momentous Singled Out to start Example 1! If Dirge takes the tackle, hold on to it. Because the opponent has to make the choice of taking you out or going for the tackle and DEF: 5 is pretty cool. If you have momentum, Defensive Stance on a charge would make it DEF: 6! If Silence has brought the bird back on the pitch, then taking it out nets 0vps for the kill but still loses them all there hard earned momentum!
Also, holding on to the ball means they have to do something about it so it draws them over to where you know they will be and then Silence, Obulus, Cosset and Ghast can get real busy screwing them over!
Example 4: Dirge plays football
Def 5 with 5 health is rubbish, but at least it’s not as bad as Greede.
But Dirge can still threaten the goal from 14” away and if Obulus Puppet Masters it beforehand then that’s a threat range of 22”.
O.K. Let’s get this out of the way now. Dirge has a 1D6 4” kick which is as bad as it gets. But…
1 dice is 50% probability
2 dice (if bonus timed) is 75% probability
That’s not rubbish….
Suddenly, Dirge with 2 Inf could have a 75% probability of scoring for you.
That’s definitely not rubbish!
Silence is 7” from goal and you have 2 or more momentum, Dirge can go 10 inches, bonus time a pass to Silence (75% probability) who can now snap shot on 4 dice! (5 if he can bonus time it)
THAT IS DEFINATLY NOT RUBBISH!
Oh, in case you haven’t noticed, here’s Silences kick stats and other groovy thing to be aware of. Also, If you haven’t read Dan’s Silence article on Ozball. Go do that after finishing this.
I go in to games imagining that I am 2 VPs down as Dirge is easy enough to take out and then I don’t care about getting it involved. But the threat of -4vps more often than not a thinking point for teams you are playing against. Especially if it’s near the end of the turn and Dirge is worth 0vps.
Dirge is more versatile than you think, but comes under the heading of ‘hungry’ as you need to put 2 inf on it to do anything above the ordinary.
Dirge is extremely manoeuvrable and don’t be afraid to get it up in the faces of your opponent. You ignore all terrain and ground, fly over it!
Dirge can play football if you have momentum! 75% Probability on a 14” threat isn’t as bad as you think.
Dirge can support almost any player on your team with Singled Out. Need that Tackle? Need that extra 2 TAC?
Be aware of being in a position where Silence’s kick is buffed or Cosset gets the extra Dmg buff.
Don’t leave Graves alone with it….. (Don’t ask)
Anyway, I hope that’s an interesting article on the Mascot and I hope it inspired you to get a bit braver with Dirge and get it in to the game a bit more. I find it great fun to play with when you start putting 2 influence on it at crucial moments in the game.
Till next time