N18 Just about done...

Jan 12, 2021
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So, today I played my final game in our first Campaign. I came up against a Van Saar gang and we got a scenario called 'Something to Prove' (I did not choose it, it was chosen for me).

Short version: I did not have fun. I lost of course, but it wasn't only that, it was the unpleasant feeling that you're so completely outclassed by your opponent that you never really had a chance. It feels humiliating and boring at the same time.

This gang has 3 Augmeks: One with a Plasma Gun, one with a Grav Gun, and one with a Multi-Melta. There is also an Archeotek with a Grenade Launcher and a Prime with a Plasma Gun. Everyone else has Lasguns with Hotshot Packs (and one Neotek with a hand flamer). They all have infra-sights and Ocular Alphas, and on the first turn they turned out the lights.

Safe from being charged by me, and more or less safe from being shot at, the Multi-melta and Grav Gun take shots at my fighters, putting them down one by one. Because they're blast templates, being in cover doesn't help. Being out of sight behind a corner doesn't help either, since they can just target the corner and you get hit anyway. Having Reflec Shrouds on them helps a little, but the Multi-Melta is still a Strength 8 blast that does 3 damage, and sooner or later you will fail your 4+ save, and the Grav Gun doesn't even care about that.

If only I'd had Wide-Eye on my fighters... isn't it awful how I'm not prepared for absolutely everything?

So this being my last game in this campaign, I want to take stock of how it went for me. I'm looking for 3 kinds of advice:

a) Practical Advice: how do I play my Escher? Throughout the campaign I tried to figure them out, but I always felt outmatched by Van Saar, Venators, Enforcers, and even Orlocks. Everyone else seems to just do more, have better weapons, better armour, shoot better, fight better, or else somehow always have the advantage. If it helps, here's a link to my gang as it stands at the end: The Frenzies

b) Dealing-with-it Advice: I'm honestly feeling utterly frustrated with this game right now. We're probably starting another campaign soon after this one is finished, and I don't want to be the spoilsport, but I'm not looking forward to it.

c) Is-it-even-worth-it Advice: I also feel like I've been here before with GW games. I happen to fall in love with a faction that happens to be underpowered compared to others, and at first it's all enthusiasm and planning out my list and lovingly painting each miniature, and then it quickly turns to frustration and bad feelings when it encounters what feels like absolute cheese. Then I start trying to figure out how to counter the cheese with cheese of my own, but nothing works, and it ends up feeling like bashing my head against a rock over and over and hoping for a different result, which isn't fun at all. Is it worth it to even try?

Any advice you can give will be helpful. I know this will come across as very negative and I'll probably be embarrassed about posting it tomorrow, but I wanted to put it down right now while the frustration is still fresh, because if we start another campaign with things as they are I will only end up feeling this angry and frustrated again, and it's obvious that I need help turning it around.

Thank you! :)
 

Kiro The Avenger

Gang Hero
Apr 4, 2018
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This combination is pure filth.
I think Pitch Black creates too much of a disparity between those with night vision and their without. Especially because Pitch Black isn't a random scenario element, it's something that individual gangs have the power to control. So if you have the ability to turn off the lights, obviously you stock up on night vision because you can play it every game.
It's very unfair and totally unfun for everyone else.

Its hard to get a measure of your gang just based on that link though, since they're all tricked out. Haven't by Overseer on your leader to boost the charge range of other fighters is massively helpful.
But you will absolutely be outclassed by Van Saar. It also depends on how meta other players are going, although if you're using falsehoods and camocloaks that's pretty meta.
Maybe post a starting list with perhaps some short term goals we can critique?


I don't think Escher are bad, but they lack the cheese that Van Saar, Enforcers, Goliaths, and other gangs can field.
You also reached nearly 4000 credits by the end, I don't know which campaign you played but in every campaign I've played a large number of players never even properly surpassed 1000cr, it was just a constant beatdown for them. So I don't think you did too bad.
Necromunda as a game as big problems with cheese, it's only really a viable game if people try and avoid it.
You could try discussing this with your group, asking people to tone it down for the next campaign.
 
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Heart of Storm

Gang Hero
Mar 8, 2019
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Sounds like the first thing to do is talk to your group about the campaign, sound out how everyone else feels about the campaign and try to mutually agree some house rules that will make it more fun.

Some suggestions can be removing certain tactics cards, limiting scenarios which can be used, reducing credits received for a win to limit snowballing.

However as said above, Necromunda isn't a very balanced game, some gangs (Van Saar and Goliath in particular) are prone to becoming very strong very fast - hopefully your Van Saar player saw how little you enjoyed playing against them and also wants to have challenging, enjoyable games.



In terms of Escher more generally, they can be a bit confusing, I know my Escher girls are generally pretty mid-table in our campaigns - we don't have Van Saar but Goliath or Corpse Grinders tend to be the gangs to beat in our campaigns.

Goonhammer seems to suggest Escher are a long-range gunline gang with some strong charge deterrents, this works OK against most gangs but will get you blasted off the table by Van Saar. Likewise going full melee with Escher is asking for trouble as Goliath, Corpse Grinders and Ogryns do it better.

I tend to run mine as a mix, a solid gun line that can hold a mid-long table position, with a melee corp that can either hold back to deal with enemies who push through, or move downtable to apply pressure dependent on who im playing.

But as I said, my Escher also arent campaign champions so take that for what its worth
 

Punktaku

Un-Dis-Honored
Honored Tribesman
Apr 4, 2017
9,100
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As a grognard, I feel i must point out that ORB and NCE don’t have those levels of cheese. I also recognize that getting a new group to play an old version of the game is probably an uphill battle... especially if they enjoy all the shiny new toys the current version has available to starting gangs.
 

TopsyKretts

Hive Lord
Honored Tribesman
Dec 29, 2017
5,898
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Ideally pitch black would be a random element once in a while which might allow melee focused gangs to kick ass. Instead, it allows the shootiest (with night vision) to counter other shooty gangs (without night vision) and close combat as well.

Game is broken.
 

Kiro The Avenger

Gang Hero
Apr 4, 2018
1,693
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Bristol, UK
I totally agree in that Topsy.
Although since Van Saar get cheap infrasights I rather feel they'll dominate in the dark regardless :(

Oldmunda had its own problems. I think this new version is a better game if you avoid the cheese.
I've only had few games that I consider downright terrible, and most of those have easily identified and fixable points of failure.
 
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Jan 12, 2021
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Its hard to get a measure of your gang just based on that link though, since they're all tricked out. Haven't by Overseer on your leader to boost the charge range of other fighters is massively helpful.
But you will absolutely be outclassed by Van Saar. It also depends on how meta other players are going, although if you're using falsehoods and camocloaks that's pretty meta.
Maybe post a starting list with perhaps some short term goals we can critique?

For the next campaign, I came up with this: The Horned Rose. Please critique away.

These are the things that frustrated me the most, I think:

1) Bouncing Off. You send in your best melee fighter to attack an enemy, or shoot with your best weapon... and they shrug it off. They return fire, and you get taken out. Occasionally of course this is bound to happen, but it seemed to happen more often than not. At first it was the Enforcers who just stood there and saved everything, but after a while the Van Saar, Venators, and Orlocks were as well.

2) Melee: Getting close enough for a charge was insanely difficult, and usually ended badly. I was surprised when I tried to charge an Enforcer with my Death Maiden: another Enforcer got to shoot at her first, and then a dog charged her and took her out before she could do anything. I was also surprised when the Van Saar turned out the lights, and suddenly my Death Maiden can't charge what she can't see, which means that she can't charge at all, and has to stand there and be shot at instead. Not fun.

3) Blasts: They hit every time, regardless of whether you're in cover, whether you can be targetted, or even out of sight around a corner. At first it wasn't too bad, since everyone had just one grenade launcher (myself included), but pretty soon it was multiple grenade launchers, missile launchers, multi-melta, grav gun, plasma cannon, and who knows what else. Everyone filled up on blasts.

4) Unique Powers and Abilities: Everyone seems to grow into theirs, but mine are tied to chemicals that have the be bought again and again, while also trying to equip my fighters with weapons and armour to keep up with the other gangs. At the end I had enough money to do both, but I struggled for most of the campaign.

That's off the top of my head. There were other little things that bothered me, but those are the big ones.
 

Kiro The Avenger

Gang Hero
Apr 4, 2018
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TBH you're not wrong on any of those points.

1) Escher have equal access to armour as Orlock or Venators, but Van Saar and Enforcers both start with undersuits so get a huge boost on that.
2) Overseer can really help with boosting fighters into melee. As are tactics card for +1 action or similar. But it's definitely not something that can stand toe-toe with shootings. Pitched Black is just crazy and honestly screws melee more than shooting. With shooting you can move+shoot from 8" even without nightvision, but with melee your maximum range is 3" and only 3". It's rough.
3) Blasts are a bit crazy, as you say cover doesn't even help much against them. Multi-meltas and plasma cannons in particular can put down very powerful templates. Champions can easily get to BS2+ and now you're almost very missing.
4) Definitely, Escher's chems are a serious problem. There's some really awesome effects, but they're expensive and the costs adds up fast even with a chemyst. If you try and use chems, your gang doesn't grow as income is spent on sustaining these chems whereas other gangs progress around you.

Commenting on your gang though;
- I *love* my double plasma pistol/stiletto sword loadout. But I'm not sure your queen is the best base for this. Firstly, your leader has access to Overseer. Secondly, she's the only irreplaceable model in your gang and it's a very aggressive role.
- I've had a lot of success with Combat Virtuoso Deathmaidens, so looks good.
- Needlerifles are a bit too weak for a champion weapon imo, but I understand it is cheap.
Consider swapping the queen and champion's loadouts, giving the queen Overseer. Maybe shave some credits to make that double plasma pistols matriarch a Deathmaiden.
- Grenade launchers are good, good enough for champions IMO.
Instead of swapping the Queen and Matriach you could swap the Matriarch and Specialist. grenade launcher champions are very effective and longer range. I'd consider this if you play Sector Mechanicus more.
- Sisters with lasguns are solid choices. They're great platforms for smoke/photon/incendiary grenades and/or hotshot packs later on.
- I'm not a fan of Juves. Especially not with ranged loadouts. A 4" short range is quite bad if you're relying on it for even a moderate to-hit roll.
- You're technically not allowed to start a campaign with a chymist, you need to hire them in a post-battle phase.
It looks to be a solid enough gang though, definitely more optimised for Zone Mortalis and would seriously struggle with the ranged engagement on Sector Mechanicus though.
 

almic85

Cranky Git
Oct 30, 2014
2,365
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It’s hard to give advice without knowing the campaign type, enemy gangs and also just who you are playing against. It looks like your campaign is pretty cut throat given how your Frenzies were armed.

The best way I can think about how to make the next campaign better is to have a post campaign sit down with everyone and talk about what each of you found good, bad and ugly and then try to come to some sort of group consensus on how to make the campaign better for everyone next time.

I’m interested in how the Van Saar player turned the lights off (via tactic card or territory boon) and if they were regularly able to do it. They seem to have built their gang to counter smoke grenades and take advantage of the lights being turned off. Either way there are some house rules that could be added to the next campaign to either randomise selection of tactic cards so it doesn’t become a go to tactic or even adjust the pitch black rule so that it prevents all shooting outside of the visible area.

Your gang itself seems fine, though a little reliant on needle weapons. It could probably do with more plasma guns and grenade launchers if it wanted to up its “efficiency”. Really any time you are not taking a boltgun, plasma gun or grenade launcher you are taking an inefficient weapon choice.

For the question of is it worth it I would say that Necromunda really only stays fun for a long period of time if you are able to have fun while losing. It’s not balanced enough to stand up to any type of competitive play and if the wrong person joins a group and cheeses their gang it can ruin the whole campaign. I find it best to focus on developing the story of the gang both on and off the table as it makes the game about more than just winning or losing that one game. I also use it to explain a number of “bad tactical choices” I make throughout a campaign as being in character for that particular fighter.
 

EAfirstlast

Ganger
Aug 31, 2017
202
134
58
Alexandria, VA, USA
if your campaign has progressed to the point where someone is fielding a multimelta, EVERYONE better be fielding one. It's the single strongest end campaign weapon in the game. It trivializes so much.

That said, you want to cheese? Grenade launchers. Just like three or four. If this is the climate you are having to game into, there really isn't much cheesier for escher than three launchers, they even scale well as you can toss gas and do chymist shenanigans on them as needed.


That said, escher just scale poorly. They don't have access to power combos. Orlock and Cawdor (though new book might fix this) have a similar problem. Anything these three gangs try and push into at the end of a high credits campaign, another gang is going to be doing better.


Perhaps you could suggest to your arbitrator that your campaigns scale to high or too fast and the credits need to be reigned in.
 

Scabs

Gang Champion
Feb 4, 2014
427
530
103
San Diego. CA, USA
You have a 3425 Gang Rating! You couldn't afford night vision? C'mon, man!

Seriously, let's take stock. I've never seen a Gang Rating that high. Once you hit about 2500 GR, the game stops being fun. Don't blame the game, it's optimized for ill-equipped lowlifes. Your 780 cred Leader is the most expensive and well-equipped fighter I've ever seen. But, she only has a plasma pistol and a sword? And, a throwing knife! WTF?! Why don't she have a meltagun?

Just say'n. If your gonna play in a campaign with those crazy Gang Ratings, you got plenty of creds to buy what it takes to be ready for any situation. If you get beat (and we all do), don't quit. Don't blame the game. Spring Up and fight again.
 

EAfirstlast

Ganger
Aug 31, 2017
202
134
58
Alexandria, VA, USA
You have a 3425 Gang Rating! You couldn't afford night vision? C'mon, man!

Seriously, let's take stock. I've never seen a Gang Rating that high. Once you hit about 2500 GR, the game stops being fun. Don't blame the game, it's optimized for ill-equipped lowlifes. Your 780 cred Leader is the most expensive and well-equipped fighter I've ever seen. But, she only has a plasma pistol and a sword? And, a throwing knife! WTF?! Why don't she have a meltagun?

Just say'n. If your gonna play in a campaign with those crazy Gang Ratings, you got plenty of creds to buy what it takes to be ready for any situation. If you get beat (and we all do), don't quit. Don't blame the game. Spring Up and fight again.
There's a couple of campaigns that easily rocket to these sorts of numbers by the end
 

Atromix

Juve
Feb 27, 2019
22
15
13
This makes me wonder how a campaign starting with an even lower gang rating and a much more restricted house equipment list would pan out. Start at 500-700 credits with no access to heavy weapons and limited special weapons, although you do come across the issue of loosing too many fighters to recovery early on and not being able to play.
 

Scabs

Gang Champion
Feb 4, 2014
427
530
103
San Diego. CA, USA
There's a couple of campaigns that easily rocket to these sorts of numbers by the end
The length of the campaign is determined by the campaigners, not the campaign. Around 9 games in is enough for me. After that, everyone has a ton of stuff, and it's just die rolling. But, that's just us. We usually cap at the recommended 6 +1 games. If you like larger campaigns with BIG Gang Ratings, party on!
 
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Scabs

Gang Champion
Feb 4, 2014
427
530
103
San Diego. CA, USA
This makes me wonder how a campaign starting with an even lower gang rating and a much more restricted house equipment list would pan out. Start at 500-700 credits with no access to heavy weapons and limited special weapons, although you do come across the issue of loosing too many fighters to recovery early on and not being able to play.
I've not tried a low rating campaign. It sounds interesting. I like small games with a limited crew, anyway. But, something to be aware of. What you describe is a bit more restrictive than a Dark Uprising campaign, which starts with 1000 creds. But income is low, and there is no access to Trading Posts. This means gangs progress slowly. It's not that players are greedy. But, this can play like a series of skirmishes, instead of a campaign.
 
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Heart of Storm

Gang Hero
Mar 8, 2019
855
1,286
103
This makes me wonder how a campaign starting with an even lower gang rating and a much more restricted house equipment list would pan out. Start at 500-700 credits with no access to heavy weapons and limited special weapons, although you do come across the issue of loosing too many fighters to recovery early on and not being able to play.
We've recently started with low value campaigns, or rather building up from the mini-munda campaign on Goonhammer, house lists only, no trading post etc etc, helps keep stuff manageable
 
Jan 12, 2021
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The issue with all of that is that Van Saar can start adding Oculars, energy shields, and cheap Plasma and Melta weapons from the beginning, with very little need for money, using only House of Artifice, while the lesser gangs are still struggling to raise enough cash to improve their armour and maybe get to use some of the chem-alchemy that they're supposed to be good at.

I do blame the game because the match-ups are unfair, because the 'House of...' books were written to give each gang their own character, but with no thought put into how they would play against each other, because the rules for blasts make cover and line-of-sight irrelevant, and because so many rules make no sense and need to be worked out by the players. The models are lovely, but aside from that all that the game has going for it is the legacy of being called 'Necromunda'. If it didn't have the name and the GW logo to carry it, no self-respecting company would even publish it in such a state.

Also, you don't have to agree with me of course, but please do not belittle me and kindly do not 'c'mon man' me. It's patronising.
 
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Kiro The Avenger

Gang Hero
Apr 4, 2018
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I agree, the game is a hot mess.

The House books sadly missed the opportunity to rebalance gangs by a country mile, basically doubling down on everything that made the good gangs good.