With a couple of weeks leave due I was hoping to churn through some models and really get a jump on the ever growing pile on my painting bench. While I did get a couple of great weeks off, miniatures didn’t get a lot of attention, I did complete some Clan Ito reinforcements.
Essentially these five models complete the latest list I have been trialing; ranged heavy Ito clan. While Prefecture have their gun line, the Ito have a lot of bow options. While not as deadly as an the Prefecture guns, bows reload faster, and of course Ito can add poison to them. The basic idea of the list is to include as many bows as practical. A key advantage here is overcoming Fear, and with the Cult of Yurei dominating the local scene I thought this could be useful. There’s also the obvious fact that when you are shooting , your not getting hit back.
The first choice for the list was Kaihime. As a Samurai shes as deadly in close combat as she is ranged, and has feat that if powered right can churn out a shot every activation. As a neat all rounder she was the key model on which everything else was balanced. It didn’t hurt that she was already painted to help kick start the war band.
The next obvious choice was the Okyo Archer. A basic footman with a bow but has a feat that can extend his ranger further than Kaihime. Unfortunately the models bow needed to be replaced as the original was very fragile and broke while I was assembling it. I will cover this in a future post.
Rather than include two basic archers I included Tomatsu as the 3rd archer. While his stats are pretty much the same as the Okyo archer, his feat allows other models to become Light Footed, and this is important for the other half of the list. Like the Okyo Archer I had to rebuild the bow and arrow as this model busted no less than three times during assembly.
With three archers in, and really only 1 more archer choice available (another Okyo archer) I decided to start looking at support. It’s all well and good to have a heap of ranged attacks, but eventually your going to end up close and personal with the enemy. Also as one of my other factions is the Ninja of the Shadowwind clan, I know all too well that Camouflage is a great way to defend against ranged attacks, so I would need something to counter that.
Enter Yuii. A beautiful model in itself, this legless lass is combat oriented, has light footed and steady thanks to her snake tail, and can reveal camouflaged targets for the archers. In other words, the perfect hunting dog to flush out Ninjas. A little bit of green stuff was needed for the gaps, but otherwise this was a great model to assemble. I crossed her swords behind her as this adds some strength to the otherwise impossible to pin weak joins at the wrists. Time will tell if that’s enough.
Finally for the last model in 35 rice games we add Saburo. As a Fear causing model he’s going to discourage other models from engaging him, despite having a decent combat ability himself. In addition he can camouflage himself to hide from any pesky ranged opponents!
The only problem was the lack of Light Footed to keep up with Yuii and really take full advantage of Camouflage. After all its all well and good to hide, but if you are slowed down it loses some of the appeal. This is where Tomatsu comes in and synergises with Saburo. Now he gets the best of both worlds.
Speaking of synergies, once the rice value starts to escalate, you can build on this list to pump it up. For a few rice you can add the enhancement card Snake skin to Yuii. Now both Saburo and Yuii become lurkers in the jungle, hiding from the enemy and screening the archers.
Remember how I said Kaihime can put out one shot per activation? Well team her up with the Ito Ancestor from the card pack expansion and he can channel her the 1 ki required to keep up that rate of fire for the whole game! and get a choice of one of three bonus enhancements in the process. Not to mention the Ito ancestor is a bit of a beast himself with Sharp bypassing the Armour and Toughness of your opponents.
All up these combinations will build you forces of 35, 42, and 50 rice meaning you cover all the standard tournament game sizes. Building on a basic 35 rice list. This means you don’t have to change strategies as you go, and simply gain more models to achieve the same objective.
That strategy is broadly to whittle down the enemy with bow fire, then leverage the numbers advantage. Of course, like any good general you’ll need to work with the situation as it unfolds. Sometimes it will be to your advantage to use the Ancestor more as a combat beast more than support.
Have you tried this list? I’d love to hear how you went and any feedback you may have.
Just drop me a reply below.