In the first part of this series we went through the basics of the double-handed throw. In this part we’ll get a little more sneaky and squeeze the most out of the throwing rules.
The Bread ‘n Butter throw
The vanilla double-handed throw gave us a ~44% chance to get the knockdown and some collateral on a model. For a more reliable trick we’ll enlist the help of Bobby’s friend Ross. Once again our goal is to knock down Sorscha.
[singlepic id=1995 w=320 h=240 float=center]
Ross runs up and places himself a little behind her so that she’s an intervening model between them and forms a little basketball hoop with his arms. Bobby inches up so that he’s now just within throwing range of Ross instead of Sorscha. The Wrastler winds up for the pitch and once again Bobby goes flying but this time we’re aiming at Ross. If you’re wondering why, have a second look at the flying rule and try to figure out how this will give us the auto knockdown. I’ll just paste the relevant sections here for your convenience:
A thrown model moves over models with smaller bases during this movement without contacting them. Unlike when a model is slammed, rough terrain and obstacles do not affect this movement, but the thrown model still stops if it contacts an obstruction or a model with an equal or larger-sized base.
If a thrown model contacts a model with an equal or smaller-sized base, that model is knocked down and suffers damage.
As we attempt to move Bobby into base contact with his buddy (the target of our throw), Sorscha’s standing in the way and gets contacted first. This time there’s no dice rolling involved. Just a clean hit (remember, we’re still assuming that the basic strength checks, attack rolls and such are successful). The ice witch is knocked down and you can feel free to do whatever your thing is. I’m a sucker for multiple Flesh Eaters myself.
[singlepic id=1996 w=320 h=240 float=center]
Have your rule book nearby with the relevant section highlighted because your opponent will want to confirm that this is actually the way it goes down. The key is that the thrown model should have the exact same base size or it won’t work. It’ll either fly past a smaller base or go squish against a larger. This is by far the most common throwing trick I use in my games and has netted me some unexpected wins together with its relative:
The Dive Bomb
This is a simple variant of the above version that you can use when Sorscha has recruited some Kayazy Assassins to screen her. Bobby will collide with the first possible assassin (which can be worth it in and of itself), but since we’re now familiar with the flying rule we know that any base larger than the screening ones will fly right over. Run your favourite incorporeal model behind the target (doesn’t actually have to be incorporeal but it makes positioning so much easier), pick up that medium base and hurl it clean over the meat.
[singlepic id=1997 w=320 h=240 float=center]
When you hit your own guy the model will plant itself straight down and everything under it will move according to the principle of least disturbance.
[singlepic id=1998 w=320 h=240 float=center]
If you position your hoop cleaverly you can reposition the target a little for some additional punishment.
[singlepic id=1999 w=320 h=240 float=center]
[singlepic id=2000 w=320 h=240 float=center]
Just remember that you need LoS to your target so shield walls can still mess up your day. If you don’t take anything else with you from this article, at least learn the Bread n’ Butter and the Dive Bomb by heart because they will come in handy some day.
Shortcomings of the normal throw
With the groundwork laid out we can have a short intermission and take look at the old school one handed throw. The reason it’s not as reliable is the fact that you will always determine the touchdown spot by deviating from the maximum distance. This means you will always have to rely on the lucky scatter to get the job done. The best scenario would be when you’re able to position your basketball so that the maximum throw distance ends up on the center of your target’s base, which gives you the same probabilities as “The 44”.
There is a guaranteed contact situation though. If your basketball is more or less in base to base with the target the deviation won’t matter. Sometimes your slam lanes are blocked off or you activate too close to move the minimum distance for the slam, so I think it’s a good tool to have in mind when the battlefield gets crowded.
[singlepic id=2001 w=320 h=240 float=center]
[singlepic id=2002 w=320 h=240 float=center]
With the major things out of the way we’ll wrap up this article with some other odds and ends.
No targeting? No problem!
There is a pretty sweet sentence in the throwing rules:
…A double-handed throw at another model is not an attack against that model.
Nice! This is pretty self-explanatory. Have it in mind when going up against stuff like Saeryn and eSkarre that negates attacks against them on their respective feat turns. This part of the rules allows you to get some collateral damage by throwing your own stuff directly at them, no need to use something like the “Dive Bomb” to get around the no-targeting rule. It’s especially nice against Saeryn since you have the possibility to follow up with some tasty ranged attacks after you’ve knocked her down.
Throws also gets around stealth. With the average STR on a heavy being aroung 10-12 you’d think it doesn’t matter much since you’ll be pitching from close to the stealth bubble anyway, but I find myself usually setting up my warbeast and the thrown model as far away from the target as possible to keep my big guy safe from getting charged next turn. It’s good to know the attack doesn’t automatically miss. You’re not increasing your chances of getting the contact by going arbitrarily closer.
No gun? No problem!
If you’ve got a ‘beast or ‘jack without ranged options you can always substitute a gun with a grunt. If you have a chaff unit you use for screening the rest of your stuff on the advance you can try to surprise flanking solos with some flying people. The threat range is actually pretty decent. Between advancing, melee ranges, base sizes and the throw itself the average heavy can reach out and touch someone somewhere around 12″ away. Not bad if you’ve got an extra grunt lying around and there’s a juicy solo chilling nearby. This is also good to have in mind for those occasions when your attacks leading into a Grab ‘n Smash have left the opponent crippled and on the verge of dying. Why settle for one when you can get a double whammy?
[singlepic id=2005 w=320 h=240 float=center]
What are you going to do now captain Impervious-pants when you’re all prone and miserable? Are you happy with just standing there next turn or are you going to bring the fight over here?
Oh who am I kidding they have the Covenant…
Last but not least we have a counter against huge stuff putting pressure on you with their controlling warnoun far behind. When Mulg comes careening in with the Earthborn animus up and in the krielstone aura that Wrastler doesn’t look so imposing any more. Instead of trying to death roll him to bits we can chuck him back towards our own table edge, out of the control area. If they can’t force or be allocated they can’t shake. We can use this to buy a round for animi to expire and to set up charges, or run forward screaming with a counter rush of our own now that their big piece is out of the way. Do take into account that you need to throw the model away from the attacker so you position correctly.
[singlepic id=2004 w=320 h=240 float=center]
Just take care so you don’t throw the model into an uncontested scenario zone…
That wraps it all up. Now you know about the throw. I hope I got you a little excited about power attacks and that you run off to dust off that Castigator that’s been sitting around, unloved. If you have a trick that I haven’t covered by all means drop a comment!