Fist of all: Veteran Boar’s Legendary Play, Chop Chop!, sounds more like a Cook’s Guild play than Butchers. Like, I get what they are going for there, but still. Anyway, on to the actual article.
Vet Boar has a lot going on. I’m going to start with what he does for himself and then on to the support for his team.
First, as is normal for my articles, and especially my articles about Butchers, we will look at his damage output.
Boar does more damage, on average, that either Ox or Fillet when the target isn’t bleeding. And he does it more efficiently, usually getting two swings per influence. Plus a free charge some of the time. When you look at the captains already being engaged (no free charge for Boar), then the other captains put out more damage in an activation because they get to make more attacks. Boar only gets 4 attacks while Ox gets 5 and Fillet 6 attacks. If Boar gets a charge off he does more damage than even Fillet attacking a model 6 times that’s already bleeding. Remember, though, that I am talking about averages here, results will vary.
As for momentum generation, if you are taking damage from Boar you are probably getting momentum for it. There is a weird spot in his playbook, though. If you get exactly 5 net hits the highest damage result you can take, 4 damage, is not momentous. It comes with a GB but you will still have to make the choice between momentous 3 and 4 damage GB, but no momentum, at this point. On two net hits you run into a similar choice of either 1 damage and a GB or 2 momentous damage. Depending on what momentum you already have or whether the opponent takes a counter attack will inform this decision and will need to be evaluated on a case by case basis.
Speaking of those GB results, let’s look at them. Veteran Boar has two Guild Ball character plays and they are both really good: Singled Out, which gives +2 TAC when attacking the Singled Out model, and Stagger, which reduces the model’s defense by 1. Both can only be put on models Boar is engaging. Both of these are really good in Butchers. Let’s take a look at how these two character plays affect Boar’s attacks. (Not included is how they affect his charges because it’s very unlikely he will get off one of these character plays, then un-engage himself, and then be able to charge. If you do, it’s good. Make sure you take pushes on the free attacks. You’ll want to make sure they are out on a single push result so you don’t lose two attacks worth of damage.)
Singled Out Damage
Both of these results increase his damage for all other attacks by about 1 on average. On first blush it seems like Stagger is better to pick than Singled Out except against the lowest defense, but I want to be sure. For Boar I broke it down to every possible defense and armor combination in the game. The data came out well for Boar to an easy to remember rule: Defense 2 gets Singled Out, Defense 3 it doesn’t really matter, and Defense 4+ gets stagger. Now, in this case I’m not talking about what the defense and armor add up to, but the ACTUAL defenses. I am going to do this with everyone that works for Veteran Boar to see if this holds up for the others or if there are other variations of this rule. Plan to see that article fairly soon.
Before he can benefit from those Character Plays, he has to trigger them. For the 1 damage GB result on column 2, he’s very likely to get that, even against high defense models:
Chance on Attack
Chance on Charge
The better Guild Ball result, with 4 damage attached, is a lot harder to get. You will probably only trigger it against really low defense models or on the charge. Here are the chances:
Chance on Attack
Chance on Charge
Another relevant result on his playbook is the KD. Good for counter attacks and for preventing counter attacks. Here are the chances he has to hit that:
Chance on Attack
Chance on Charge
It’s worth mentioning that his 2 inch push is only 1 column more. With the percentage chance of getting the KD it is also very likely to get the 2 inch push against anyone but the 5 “defense” models. This makes the chance of getting the charge off on someone that has been Singled Out of Staggered more likely (but still kind of Magical Christmas Land, I don’t expect this to be the norm).
So, besides the Character Plays that obviously support the other players but I need to look at in more depth, Boar has his legendary and an aura that allows a player to buy berserk. We will start with the legendary that gives Furious. A free charge (on top of normal influence) is pretty good. Even if all the squaddies on your team get the free charge this is (on average) about 12 additional damage. Comparing that to the other captain’s legendaries it should be doing close to the same amount or more. Ox’s legendary will do the same amount of extra damage over 6-12 attacks and it would take Fillet getting 4 models with bleed to do 12 damage. However, that assumes that 4 squaddies get a charge and your opponent can easily make sure that does happen, especially since the models have to be in the legendary aura (6″) when they make their free charge, not when he legendaries. If Boar legendaries and then charges something your models might no longer be within 6 of Boar.
Berserk also seems like it’s really strong for a Butchers squaddie to gain, and it’s pretty good, but maybe not as good as it first seems. You have to spend 1 influence to gain the berserk leaving only 2-3 influence to make attacks if the model is fully loaded. It doesn’t seem worth doing on the models that only hold 3 influence (unless they are also charging for free) because they only get one additional attack out of it. That means Meathook, Vet Ox, and Cinnamon aren’t getting much benefit. The models that hold 4 end up with 2 extra attacks if it all works out, which is better. Even with those two extra attacks the squaddie only ends up doing 4 extra damage, usually. You should be getting at least 4 extra damage from Ox’s owner aura, probably more each turn.
Looks like the easiest comparison would be to Captain Ox. They have similar defenses, similar output, and similar support. Ox leans more to the support side, letting the team do more damage, and Boar leans more to the personal output side, doing more damage himself (more efficiently). Personally, I think I will still play Ox. I’m going to get games in with Boar and see if that changes my mind. Fillet still brings a lot of differences to match ups that I don’t think Boar really handles: she has high defense and good mobility. He sure does look fun, though.