After taking a quick break to work at a Pub/Bar/Restaurant on Father's day and to attend a tournament, it's time to get back to regular scheduling. The layout for posts over the next few days will be the Avatar tomorrow, followed by the 3 remaining Pheonix Lords, before delving into the Independant Characters and the epicly long posts that they entail. Today though, we move on to probably the most talked about of the Pheonix Lords at the minute. Karandras.
As Karandras has the same statline as all of the Pheonix Lords, we can only really differentiate him based upon his Wargear, Special Rules and Points Cost. And he has a buttload of all of those things. Starting off with his points cost. He is the most expensive of the Pheonix Lords, and indeed the Special Characters, at a pricetag closer to 250 than 200pts.
Onto his Wargear. Obviously he's got the Armour, he's got a Scorpion Chainsword, an AP6 close combat weapon at +1S. Then he has a Scorpion's Claw, essentially a non-unwieldy Power Fist with a Shuriken Catapalt built in. In addition he comes with Plasma Grenades. Finally his special piece of Wargear. This is called the Scorpion's Bite. It's kind of crappy, essentially a S6 Hammer of Wrath hit. Where the money lies really is with the Scorpion's Claw. You're getting 5 attacks base (dual close combat weapons) with that at WS7, S8 AP2. Brutal.
Moving on. His Warlord Trait is the same as Yriels, this isn't actually that bad as it works in the assault phase too, making Karandras and any nearby units that extra bit hitty for a turn where you may need bailing out a little. It just makes the guy that extra bit more deadly.
Special Rules is really where the money is. Karandras has: Ancient Doom, Battle Focus, Fearless, Fleet, Eternal Warrior, Independent Character, Infiltrate, Move Through Cover, Night Vision and Stealth. I'm just going to pick out the most important one here. Karandras has infiltrate, and this is something that he confers to his unit. So stick him, say, in a big unit of Grotesques, and infiltrate them as far forward as you can. But you can do a better job with Illic right? Well yes, however, Karandras has an extra bonus. Because he's got a 2+ save and Eternal Warrior, he's an excellent tank, coupled with the increased majority Toughness given by the Grotesques. Even better, take Eldrad, roll for Fortune and if you get it you have an Eternal 2+ re-rollable save monster at the head of a T5 unit that is 12-18" away from your enemy. Sweet. Even if you do get a Lascannon, you can attempt to look out sir it but as you're Eternal it's not the end of the world.
Finally, Karandras has his Exarch Powers. The first of which is Monster Hunter, so he's not bad for taking down your Riptides and your Wraithknights especially with his Claw. Secondly, he comes with Stalker. This works as follows, if you're in a challenge, you have a chance of getting to re-roll to wound, this is increased if you have the higher initiative. So he may be challenging those Monstrous Creatures then.
In short, Karandras may be the most expensive of the Special Characters, but he has a use, and is definitely worth consideration. He's a strong individual character with the potential for great synergy with other units.