Tuesday, 22 October 2013

M2E for Beginners - A Basic 'Opposed' Duel Part 2 - Casting

In Part 1 we looked at shooting using a small dispute between a Rotten Belle and a Guild Guard which can be found here. Now lets move onto Casting...

In general a spell is either a physical effect (and will target your Defence (Df) just like a bullet or a blade or is an attempt to attack you mentally (and will instead target your models Willpower (Wp). As with all things in Malifaux there are the occasional exceptions but generally this is true the majority of the time.

In the 1.5 version Casting worked slightly differently in that the caster generated his total in it's entirety before the opponent flipped any cards at all and if the spell was unsuccessful then they had no need to flip any cards. In M2E this works slightly differently as all opposed duels now are functionally identical. Whether casting a spell, shooting some-one in the head or giving them a good slap the procedure is basically the same though there are a few small differences which we'll cover as they occur...

So the Rotten Belle (B) has decided that the Guild Guard (A) is far too far away from her in order to continue their debate about their clashing outfits and has decided to cast a spell in order to remedy that situation.

This spell in fact...

This particular spell has a Range of 18" so the Rotten Belle (B) measures the distance before committing herself to the Action and finds she's easily in range. All spells in M2E have the base casting value (the number you add your card flip to) built into them and they also have any 'built-in' card suits listed next to them.

In this case the spell has a nice high value of 8 and has both a Crow and a Mask built into it which means that regardless of the suit on the card you flip the casting player automatically counts as having a Crow and a Mask in addition to any suit that may be on the flipped card.

There is also a target value (12 in this case) which often also has a suit requirement which in this case is a Crow and a Mask. For the spell to be cast successfully the caster needs to equal or beat the target number as well as fulfil all the suit requirements...don't worry it will make sense in a bit...

A Brief Note.
It may seem somewhat redundant for a spell to already have the suit requirement (or requirements) for casting built in but this makes more sense when you realise that several models have abilities that can modify or remove suits completely from your casting value. The Arcanist Master Rasputina (for example) has the 'Counterspell' ability which removes all suits from an enemy Casting (Ca) Action which targets her. So the above mentioned 'Lure' Spell would lose both it's Crow and Mask  from the casting value effectively making it impossible for the Rotten Belle to cast against her as there's no way for a model without the ability to use soulstones to generate two card suits from the card flip...

The Rotten Belle (B) has already discovered that she's in range of the spell so now flips a card to add to her casting value of 8 and needs a total of at least four...and unfortunately only flips a 3 of Rams.
Even though the spell has failed to reach it's target number the Guild Guard (A) still needs to flip a card just like in any other opposed duel and pulls a respectable 7 which added to her Willpower (Wp)of 5 gives a total of 12.
As the loser, the Rotten Belle (B) gets to cheat first but chooses not too and the Guild Guard (A) having won the duel has no need to cheat at all.

As she really wants to get up close and personal with the Guild Guard the Rotten Belle decides to spend her second Action to cast the spell again and this time she flips a far more useful 11 of Crows giving her an impressive total of 17 and as we've previously mentioned she has the required suits built in. 

The Guild Guard flips an 8 of Masks which gives her a total of 13 and as the loser of the duel gets to cheat first. The Guild Guard would need a card of at least 13 value to beat the Rotten Belles total and she either doesn't have one or has no desire to use it...either way the spell is successful. Now our totals are established Triggers would be declared and as it happens the Rotten Belle has one.

We'll cover Triggers in detail in their own tutorial but for now all you need to know is that they're right below the Attack Action they apply to, have a suit requirement, are declared after duel totals are established and have an effect which occurs in addition to the normal effects of the Attack. This particular Trigger requires two Crows and the Rotten Belle (B) has one built into the spell and gained another one from the card flip. She can therefore choose to activate the Trigger or not as they're optional though there's rarely a good reason not to gain a bonus to an attack for free, lol.

The result of the spell is that the Guild Guard (A) is required to move it's Walk (Wk) towards the casting model (in this case the Rotten Belle) and finish it's move as close to it as possible.

The Guild Guard (A) ends it's move as close to the Rotten Belle (B) as possible as per the Spells listed effect. 

This particular spell involves a movement effect though it could just have easily set you on fire, poisoned you, driven you insane or locked you in a pine box. There are far too many spells to do examples of them all but they all follow the same rules to cast.

Now they're in Melee range of one another it's time to look at Melee attacks...in part 3 that is.....

Thoughts and comments are (as usual) most welcome.


  1. Great explanation.
    Im waiting for Hired Swords Set be available to buy some packs and start to play.

    1. Glad you liked it. I'll try to do a couple a week.

  2. This was so useful in understanding those built in suits. When I tried to read the rule book, it seemed like those were requirements to use the attacks. I was seriously contemplating giving up the game. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

    1. You're welcome. I'm glad the feature was of assistance.


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