Hi guys, long time no see. I recently wrote a Tactica for Grissel2 on the Lormahordes Forum, which I strongly recommend to all aspiring Troll players.
I know not everyone uses the Troll forums so I thought I’d include it here as well. I hope to get around to some other casters when I get a chance.
Anyway, hope it’s useful
Grissel is Madrak’s most trusted general and at times when Rathrok kept him distracted from this roll she was arguably the overall commander of all the United Kriels, a roll she did not chose but filled admirably. The only warcaster who is also a Fell Caller, this version doesn’t you fell calls but we see exploration of the offensive power of the fell call, while she still maintains her troop friendly roots with spells like Dash.
Welcome to Mk3 where nothing could be further from the truth. Grissel does more “Work” than any other caster in the faction. She is literally a one girl wrecking crew and she is not just ridiculously fun to play, but she is now the most adaptive caster in our stable. She can play any theme and take almost any models in trolls and not only make them work, but make them work well.
Grissel2 has an amazing stat line. A speed of 6 means she gets where she needs to and the fact she can increase this by a further 1 by casting Dash makes this even better.
Her Mat of 7 and Rat of 6 are again excellent. Yes it’s nice when casters have Rat 7 but she has so much else on her kit it’s just nice to not be Mat 6 or Rat 5.
Defensively she rocks a base 15 Defence and 17 Armour. These are really good for a caster that often gets to sit back. On top of this she can skew her defence with Deflection and her armour with stone. With a gun like hers you would expect her to be squishy and that really is not the case meaning she can play high up the board and project her huge strong threat range.
Fell Blast: A bit of fluff to start this one. This is Grissel literally shouting so loud she knocks jacks over or makes ground so treacherous, men die when they step on it. Bad Ass! This is the reason you take Grissel. A lot of the other parts of the kit are nice, but this weapon is easily one of the best guns in the entire game. Three different shot types make it flexible and ROF 3 means she doesn’t have to spend fury to get all three shots, every turn.
– Quake: a knockdown shot that requires a direct hit against an enemy model, but knocks down all models in a 3 inch AOE. Great for assassinations or just knocking down a jack so your bomber doesn’t have to worry about hitting it. You could also knock down large clumps of infantry if your opponent has kept them all bunched. You’ll probably use this shot type the most and it’s excellent.
Resounder: On top of this amazing gun, she has a Pow 14 hammer which has crit smite. I’m not going to lie, it doesn’t get used too often as the gun is so good and often dashing out of combat and then shooting them to death is a better option, but this can definitely get work done. Especially with the nice crit effect for extra utility.
The gun will literally always have a use every single turn and it is game changing. On top of this it’s a huge assassination tool, stick far strike on her and she threatens 19 inches with Dash. One boosted knockdown shot and she can kill most casters in the game if they aren’t camping enough focus or fury.
There are very few negatives to have the best gun in the game, but if there is one, it’s that you are often so desperate to get maximum value from the gun each turn that you don’t have any fury left to cast spells. That’s a shame as well, because all three spells are solid, you just need to know when to use them.
Dash: Probably the spell I use the least and yet it has a huge effect on almost every game I play. Your opponent will ask you “How far do the Fennblades threat?” And you’ll say 13 inches, 14 with Dash and in a world of Pre-Measuring your opponent will diligently stay more than 14 inches away. The fact that you don’t really want to cast Dash when you could be using your gun doesn’t come into it. The spell forces your opponent to play cautiously. It is more soft board control, like the Crescendo shot. Even they didn’t respect the extra inch you are unlikely to Cast Dash to get 2 or 3 infantry into charge range. The real beauty of this spell is for assassinations. Whether you need the extra inch of threat on Grissel or you need to avoid a few nasty free strikes. This spell is amazing at the right times. The truth is that the right time won’t be every game.
Deflection: In a perfect world you’d cast it every turn, because extra defence against shooting and magic attacks is rarely a bad thing. But a 3 cost spell is expensive, especially when that could be 3 boosted shots into a jack which would leave it on half health and knocked down. You need to make a call and decide if the extra defence is better than getting work done and that’s one of the main Grissel2 skills. I’d argue building specifically for this spell is a trap, however. When you take our higher Defence models you are almost forced to cast it, which means you lose her flexibility, which is one of her major strengths.
Discord: Again this spell isn’t cast every game, but it’s super important when it is cast. Stopping units charging is the most obvious use of this. I will throw it on a Bouncer and run him to within five inches of a unit commander. It’s incredibly hard to kill a bouncer without charging unless you’re a hard hitting heavy, but the no spells part can be amazing as well. It also stops all the various orders that you don’t even think about like Shield Wall, which helps greatly against Legion of Steel or Cautious Advance against the Gravediggers Theme. It also stops beasts from casting Animus until they kill it.
Feat: Call of Valor
At first this one might seem a bit underwhelming, but both parts help her do what she needs to do.
Firstly we get unyielding, which is often excellent. Even if you aren’t playing a gun line you often out shoot your opponent with just Grissel and a ranged beast. The feat means you can give your opponents the choice of engaging against your unyielding army or waiting it out and suffering another turn of horrific shooting. This is especially good with Mountain Kings that are almost un-killable at armour 23. It’s also excellent with our heavy infantry as it can be very difficult to kill arm 22 Longriders, Arm 23 Warders or Arm 20 Champions. Even on the less heavily armour infantry Arm 18 fennblades (With the stone) are in a place that can start to cause problems for less hard hitting models.
Secondly we get Reposition 3, which is incredibly situational. However let’s start with the easy ones. Using it on Grissel herself. Often on turn two when the armies are first engaging Grissel will want to get some important shots off, but there may be concern about her putting herself in danger. You could for example knock down 3 heavies or spray to clear key friendly infantry before feating and then moving back to a safer position. Alternatively I’ve had situations where in order to assassinate Grissel needs to knock down an opponent and then reposition away so a Bomber can stand where she was and shoot the knocked down target. You might even use it to walk shoot and then reposition into a zone to score a key scenario point or Aim and then move to get out the way.
For other models in the army it might be used to send a heavy in kill it and reposition away to a safer location or with infantry to kill a front line and then engage the lines behind. It’s also great for attacking with models and then getting them out the way once again or for key beasts of infantry with guns to shoot and then get out of charge range.
As you can see there are multiple ways it can get used and it will depend on exactly what game you’re playing, but it certainly is adaptable and knowing how to utilize it in any given scenario will help you succeed when playing her.
Band of Heroes: If you where to build Miserable Meat Mountain again then Band of Heroes is probably the first theme you’d look at. Champions and Warders all benefit from the Feat, Dash and the defensive protection of Deceleration. Generally with this theme you’ll build a fast infantry list that attritions well and then looks to assassinate if your opponent over extends trying to deal with it. Fennblades and Longriders are also an excellent choice. Takedown helps with the attrition and helps answer certain matchups while the extra two inches of deployment help you take more of the board which helps enemy casters feel trapped or pinned against the Kill Box.
Power of Dhunia: Grissel offers enough control that it’s often very possible to play a low model piece gunline even into infantry swarms. I played this for months before switching to Band of Heroes and it was not only strong, but probably the most fun I’ve ever had with any Troll list. Acess to Dhunian Knot is excellent and she is surprisingly good with Runeshapers. Starting with Discord out is also excellent.
Storm of the North: This theme is all about the Northkin Elder attachment on the Krielstone so it’s unsurprising that a caster that brings her own speed buff makes it even stronger. Champions that threat 11 inches. Longriders that threaten 14 inches! Bears that threaten 13 inches! Or Fire Eaters that threaten 17 inches! On top of this you might be looking at building for Deceleration as Storm of the North offers strong Def 13 infantry in Northkin Raiders or Fire Eaters. The theme benefits are pretty bad as there aren’t great discord targets among the Northkin beasts short of the Glacier King and the Snow Drifts are bad with everyone. One last thing to consider is that the Northkin Elder on the stone might leave you struggling to strip stealth for a Grissel assassination.
Kriel Company: The best shooting caster in Trolls, why not take the shootiest theme? Lots of value here in shooting and then feating to buy another round of shooting. Again the lack of Bouncer is pretty sad as it’s useful for buying you an extra turn with discord. Unyielding War Wagons are really hard to shift so you can get another turns work out of them. Lots of high def infantry with all the pygs and highwaymen. The artillery can aid in an assassination as well.
What to Take:
A quick note is that almost every Troll model has good synergies with Grissel 2.
Bomber: Far strike is as close to the most important thing for any Grissel2 list and so it should come as no surprise that the Bomber gets heavy consideration. Not only does it up her ranged threat to a strong 19 inches (with Dash), but it loves to follow up on a knocked down opponent. The two of them together can one round a heavy in many situations with 3 boosted Pow 14’s and 2 boosted Pow 16’s
Impaler: If you had a list idea that required far strike, but you can’t afford the extra points then the impaler might be worth considering. It’s a lot less good for the assassination run, but the control from the crit slam is also pretty cool with Grissel. Would mainly consider if you’re pairing with a Gargantuan and don’t want to spend over 56 points just on beasts.
Mountain king: The Spray is amazing with Grissel’s assassination. Potentially 2 boosted pow 16 sprays on top of 3 boosted pow 12 sprays can mean the end of a caster surrounded by shield guards or who is immune to knockdown. On top of this the feat can make the Mountain king pretty hard to kill for one turn, which is often all you need. It’s also sometimes a good Discord target as the area it affects is huge and you can often bulldoze to get deeper and stop orders on a unit that could do damage to the MK. Finally the spray has a money control effect against infantry and when you get the hang of it two sprays a turn is usually gettable. This is all part of the soft control game that Grissel2 can play with a beastbrick and if you’re going PoD theme it’s definitely worth a look.
Glacier King: The most shots you can get on any beast and potentially all at Pow 16 with the Northkin Elder. I would probably only consider this beast with the northkin stone, but you’re getting similar shooting benefits to one and half Bombers with the added benefits of the very hard to kill feat turn. On top of that you get the control effects of the gun with it’s push and crit stationary and the concealment aura, which when combined with deceleration make many things essentially immune to shooting.
Bouncer: As mentioned many times above the Bouncer is a fantastic target for Discord. Sent it forward and it can disrupt whole battle lines as everyone tries to remove it. Especially good on feat turns and the animus is definitely strong as well.
Ice Troll: Swift Hunter is excellent with Grissel as you have three shots and you could in theory threaten even further or move back to safety without using you feat. Obviously this works best with the Northkin Krielstone attachment so you can get the power of those shots even higher.
Fennblades: Only available in one theme, but one of our strongest units can go even faster with Grissel, a mighty 14 inches with Dash and mini feat. The reposition part of the feat is wasted, but if you can keep them in feat and stone bubble they can be hard to shift at arm 18. Synergize well with Stone Scribe Chronicler and tale of the mists meaning Def 16 can mean they get delivered, which is often all they need.
Champions: Dash is again excellent with them as is the protection of deceleration and the extra amour on feat turn. Champions are really strong right now and Grissel2 runs them really well in either Band of Heroes or Storm of the North.
Longriders: Same as above almost word for word. Extra threat, armour and defence to ensure the get delivered. The only black mark is that they already have reposition, but that’s hardly a problem. Should be considered for both themes as well.
Runeshapers: A strange choice, but very few casters are as good with them as Grissel is. She can offer them even more anti shooting tech so they are potentially Def 18 against shooting while dug in with Deceleration. On top of this they offer high pow shots against knocked down beasts , jacks or the enemy caster.
Dhunian Knot: Absolutely excellent for Grissel. She loves puppet master on not just her but whatever else needs to shoot. Reroll missed knockdown shots or reroll a low damage roll. If you’re running a Power of Dhunian list you should make space for one unit.
Northkin Raiders: Kept safe from shooting with Deceleration, this unit is extremely similar to the Fennblades in Band of heroes. The Reposition is really nice and they have the added benefit of being able to contribute to shooting againsta knocked down target. Dash can mean they are extremely far across the board on turn one.
Northkin Battle Bears: These are here, because they’re really good. They like the extra speed, plus the ability to deliver them. Not a case of hugely synergistic, but they work well with her just like everyone.
Pyg Burrowers: Apparently not very good but they can dig in for def 19 with Deceleration and can shoot a knocked down enemy at pow 14. If they work with any caster it’s Grissel2.
Pyg Bushwackers: Def 13 so benefit from Deceleration with the added benefit of huge range and being able to contribute very high pow combined ranged attacks into an assassination.
Sluggers: Only Def 12 but with multiple pow 14 shots you can imagine shooting lesser pow jacks and beasts off the table.
War Wagon: With Unyielding these things can go in and survive a turn. They can also help with the ranged game throwing their pow 17s into the mix.
Hooch Hauler: Interesting synergy with northkin Raiders. Knock down a target with Grissel2 then hit with the cask bomb and kill with boosted pow 12 Northkin Raiders bombers. Three high pow guns just generally help and definitely worth a look. Hard to kill on feat turn as well.
Runebearer: Interesting one to start with. I don’t think the Runebearer synergizes well with Grissel2 at all. So why am I putting it on this list? I reckon most people are considering it an auto include with every caster in the faction right now, but I’d argue Grissel2 might be the exception. She often doesn’t cast spells so Harmonious Exaltation isn’t great. She doesn’t have any spells that can be cast by Spell Slave is completely useless and she doesn’t often need a 14 inch control range . Maybe you want to build a list around Deceleration, but otherwise I’d strongly consider leaving it at home.
Janissa: Excellent at moving things around with Tectonic shift or creating a hill to set up an assassination. At worst can contribute another pow 14 to the gunline.
Whelps: If you’re building a beast brick they should always be a consideration, but especially one with a bomber in there.
Fell Caller Hero: Really useful in all infantry heavy lists but it’s also nice to give Grissel pathfinder for certain assassinations. You miss it when you don’t have it.
Band of Heroes: This list gets across the table fast and is a strong attrition list with Take down. It deals with lots of infantry well but can struggle to kill lots of high armour. Eilish is there for puppet master and to stop scary upkeeps like Rebuke which can hurt the list. The Longriders also threaten 13 inches with is pretty strong.
Power of Dhunia: Solos are a bit of a fiddle here, as Shamans work way better a pair but Janissa and Whelps are more valuable. Maybe take the Runebearer even though Im not a fan (14 inch control is good with a beast brick) Mountain king is money and the list is super fun to play.
Storm of the North: You could quite easily build a similar list to the Band of Heroes one with Raiders or Longriders instead of Fennblades so it seemed more prudent to show more list diversity with this list. A good example of when you’d consider the impaler plus Hooch Hauler and Raider synergy and double bears.
Kriel Company: One of the better double War Wagon lists. They go in and stay alive a turn. Overall I’m not 100% convinced with this list, but if you want to play Double War Wagon it’s one of the better options available along with both Grims and Grissel1
Bogtrog Mistspeaker: Stealth Stripping and an extra magical gun means she can threaten casters that thing they are safe. Especially good into the current meta (Spring 2018) where cloud walls and incorporeal is strong.
Hutchuck: A minus 2 armour swing could be very strong vs warmachine factions. Knock them down then rust bomb them to ensure you get the kill. Probably not as strong as other two options but worth consideration.
Lynus and Edrea: Depending on certain matchups they can be excellent at removing cloud walls. Especially good in Power of Dhunia beast bricks as they are an extra scoring unit while bringing utility. There is also potential to knock down beasts or jacks and then cripple their cortex or spirit so they can’t shake the KD. The main issue with this is that the ability is Friendly Faction and their power 11 guns aren’t likely to do enough damage.
I know not everyone uses the Troll forums so I thought I’d include it here as well. I hope to get around to some other casters when I get a chance.
Anyway, hope it’s useful