Moloch, is it worth its points? - Printable Version
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Moloch, is it worth its points? - Printable Version

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Moloch, is it worth its points? - Septimus Iulius Severus - 10-31-2014 01:58 PM

Hi there everybody!
It might look like I'm spamming all over this forum room but so be it, since I've been thinking for some time about this "issue": is the Moloch worth its points?

With its 52 points it's one of the most expensive individual models in the game and the first among the creature class on par with the Cyclops. However is it really that powerful? I'm sure it's my inexperience in the game and certainly there's the bias of me being mainly a Mortan player but I'd be very grateful to have your point of view on the matter (don't mistake this post for a complaint Smile)

Let me explain by comparing it with other high points creatures.
The Cyclops has a lower melee (6 instead of 7) and lower defense (12/13) but higher missile (6/4), magic (5/3), 5 action tokens instead of 4 and most of all 33 life points (22+11) instead of 18. The subfaction ability allows it to restore 3 life point for each AT spent, even if the warlord isn't a reaver. It can see through haze effects, doesn't suffer free strike bonuses and has horror. The Moloch for the subfaction ability suffers half damage from pow 4 or less. It has horror, reek (affects only livings) and undead (pros: no need for psychology tests, cons: no received tactics, no fighting styles [hopefully it can receive AT]). All in all I think the Cyclops has more survivability.
On the damage output the Cyclops has again the upper hand with pow 4 missile attack, pow 3 attack costing 1 AT, and pow 7/2 AT attack. On the contrary the Moloch has a pow 5 with the cool septic spit and a pow 4, range 2 normal attack, both for the cost of 2 AT. The cyclops may have lower melee but can use fighting styles and its attacks are more versatile.
Regarding tactics the Cyclops has a self tactic that hits every models touched by a 6 inches line with pow 2, the Moloch has the great flesh hammer that inflicts D6 direct damage to base contact models if it charged and death breath that prevents enemy charges and applies -1 leadership (it's an enemy tactic, therefore not very reliable). I believe that on the tactics they are balanced, maybe the Moloch has a slight advantage.

The other creature I want to cover briefly is the Fleshpounder.
48 points for a creature with 1 point less in melee, defense and leadership, but 32 LPs (22+10). Its strength relies in its free D3 LPs regeneration and very useful abilities. It's able to knock down damaged models that fail the armor test, gain +1 movement when damaged by ranged attacks, has +2 to its charge distance and the obvious horror. In addition his power 4, 1 AT, 1 RNG attacks can instead inflict 2D3 direct damage. In short I believe that for a slightly lower survivability than the Moloch when crossing the board (it can however close the distance very quickly) the Fleshpounder has a more fearsome damage output.

The Fjellgangr costs 10 points less (42), it's less resistant but again on the offensive it outshines the Moloch against both single or elite models and large units.

Of course the Moloch supported by a Necromagus or better by a Mortifex increases both it survivability and damage output, but this combo it's very costly in terms of points. For example to give it an extra attack (+2 AT) the warlord has to spend at least 2 AT of his own, 1 AT assigned and 1 for otherworld breach (to use the free attack given by furor malorum the spellcaster needs to kill 5 enemies, not considering the costly 3 AT spell ancestral rites). On its own it is still a fearsome creature, but the others surpass it, especially if the Mortan warlord isn't a Mortifex.
Against large units the Moloch gets bogged down due to the lack of multiple targets attacks or cheap 1 AT ones. It can be devastating on the charge with the flesh hammer tactic, however it's not that easy for him to pull it off. The reek ability is great and frustrating for the opponent sometimes (especially against enemies affected by death breath) but it's very chance-related and unreliable. Its 18 life points are not much against pow >5 attacks, which are not uncommon. And finally his average 4 AT can be painful sometimes Smile.

In conclusion the Moloch is a great addition to the warband, personally I love it and I would take as many as I can, if anything just because they are very cool monsters. However it is very costly and I feel like it still misses something for it to be worth 52 points. I believe that a greater chance to charge and come in base contact is all it takes. A MOV of 4 or at least a +2 on the charge are very appropriate for a cavalry creature.

To come to the point, as i said, I'd like your opinion, advices, critics and (why not) even approval of some of my observations.

Thanks for the attention (it is a long post Wink) and I look forward to hearing your answers.
Have a nice weekend!

RE: Moloch, is it worth its points? - Markgrafgero - 10-31-2014 04:49 PM

When you play a Moloch you will always have a Necromagus. You should have one anyway as a Mortan player.
So the Moloch will have healing and the extra action.
A Moloch with the +1 crystal gets an impressive profile for a creature.

But i would not take one outside an Magistratum army.

RE: Moloch, is it worth its points? - Septimus Iulius Severus - 10-31-2014 08:26 PM

Thanks for your answer Markgrafgero!
Indeed with the crystal it becomes great but you need a Mortifex, the item, the range and an action token, so it's costly. The same applies to the assistant Necromagus which are usually 36 points all dedicated to supporting the moloch, since you can choose only from one spell set.
I agree with you on the fact that the Moloch suffers outside a Magistratum army.

RE: Moloch, is it worth its points? - David - 11-02-2014 01:50 AM

On its own it might be a few points over-priced, but you should bear in mind that it has Horror AND Reek, so most enemy models need to pass two LEAD tests before they can even make an attack roll!

Consider this - all attacks under POW4 do no damage. That means half of models in the game must use powerful fighting-style or some other buff in order to do any damage. This means that counter-attacks by models like Hoplites, Bladeslingers, Kinswords etc are useless!

When used in combination with a Necromagus, this creature becomes much better value for points.

Check the spell Transmortis. With this spell you can transfer damage the Moloch receives to Legio Mortum troopers. In this way you can keep the Moloch alive the entire game. If some Legio Mortum get killed through the damage transfer, then use the Raise Legionnaire spell with another Necromagus. This is a horrifying combo!

And as you mentioned, the Moloch can be buffed with the Ancestral Crystal, spells and Ancestral Powers.

Now consider you can take 3 of them in a warband under 500 Points (using the Deathsand Hourglass), or two of them without that item.

RE: Moloch, is it worth its points? - mavErik - 11-02-2014 10:06 AM

(11-02-2014 01:50 AM)David Wrote:  Consider this - all attacks under POW4 do no damage.

Hai David,

The sub clan ability states that the Moloch suffers half damage from all attacks up to POW4. Although good, it is slightly less effective than taking no damage at all Smile

My question: am I overlooking some cool combo?

RE: Moloch, is it worth its points? - Meph - 11-02-2014 10:33 AM

I guess the issue with the Moloch is what Septimus pointed out - the ability to provide a reliable damage output. I understand that the logic behind the Necromantic sub-faction is to outlast the opposition, and on paper it looks solid. My only concern is wether this will shine with Molochs in tournament games, because that's were the rules truly get a thorough test drive.

I guess what David was trying to say was that if you bounce damage off to Legio Mortum with Transmortis, the damage will most likely not be enought to kill them that easily, therefore rendering the damage as non-existant.

To make the Moloch survivable two units of Legio Mortum are required, one to cover your cabal of pallid male fashionionistas and one to soak damage from the Moloch, transfered via Transmortis. One chink in this wall is that Transmortis cannot be sustained, meaning that if you lose priority, your ingenious plan literally goes to bits.

RE: Moloch, is it worth its points? - Septimus Iulius Severus - 11-02-2014 02:36 PM

I can see your point David, on the defensive side the Moloch is strong and suffers only against elite units and models. The transmortis spell is surely a though nut to crack but Meph is perfectly right about the problem of it not being sustainable.
On the offensive hand the Moloch has powerful attacks but very focused. In addition the tail attack, whose range 2 might be useful sometimes, is inherently opposite to one of the strongest characteristics of the creature which is the tactic flesh hammer that requires base contact.
Moreover Meph is again right when saying that my (and maybe of others) main concern is the fact that the Moloch can attack just two times, three if there's a raging Mortifex/Necromagus with 5 ancestral tokens nearby (4 attacks if it receives a token and otherworld breach, but we're talking about a very intricate combo now). Considering just the normal two attacks you can see that it becomes a sitting duck for two-three rounds when engaging even an average 5-models unit. On the charge it can be devastating if in BTB but a distance of 8 inches, not including the melee range, is below anyone but dwarves. The other monsters have the option to dish out 4-5 attacks or a multiple target attack.
Now, the if intended functioning of the Moloch was to endure and slowly grind the opponents to dust (a recurring theme of all the Mortan subfactions with maybe the exeption of carnifexers whose attacks are again focused on single miniatures) the result is right on target, otherwise I think something's missing Wink.
Finally,the high point cost is the fucus of the matter, because it needs to be supported by other not so cheap models to bring out its value making it, if not the axis, one of the pillars of the warband, therefore his slow damage output affects the entire performance on the field.

Anyway thanks a lot for the answers and forgive me if I seem querulous haha Smile. If anybody has his/her experience to share to use this babe better I'd be very thankful.

RE: Moloch, is it worth its points? - Markgrafgero - 11-02-2014 03:00 PM

With a good roll the flesh hammer may kill 2 of the avérage 5 wound models before the first attack. 2, because you never get more than 2 into basecontact.
The moloch may get slay movement isnt it?
Depends if hes can get an action token from the warlord or not.
Its MEL is better than the other monsters (especially with the crystal) so the attacks will be more effective.

Even if the Moloch is not so effective, the model (green) looks cool so i field him nevertheless. Smile

RE: Moloch, is it worth its points? - Septimus Iulius Severus - 11-02-2014 04:04 PM

You're right it can be very dangerous but it's quite difficult to charge with the Moloch if the opponent isn't a bad player, that's the reason for my question about the point cost Wink.
Still I can't wait to get my hands on the actual miniature because in my opinion it's the coolest model in the game so far. Smile

RE: Moloch, is it worth its points? - David - 11-03-2014 12:00 AM

Yeah, you noted the main point earlier - the Moloch is not an ultimate offensive Creature. It's designed to work as part of the Magistratum subfaction as an excellent damage soaker and brick wall defensive creature.

Remember in the first round, most models need to make 4 dice rolls to score any damge:
1) Horror test
2) Reek test
3) roll to hit
4) roll to damage

Then the damage is possibly halved, then the remainder gets transferred to a nearby model that heals back the lifepoints automatically (if it doesnt die), and can be easily reanimated (if it does die).

When playing the Moloch with a Legions warband it should be Held in reserve and used best in a hammer-and-anvil strategy.

You might even get lucky and cause a unit to flee from a failed Horror test.

Plus its got lots of bells and whistles with its abilitiesand tactics and variety of attacks.

If you want lots of Monsters to run fast across the board and charge the enemy then you might want to consider playing Banebrood not Mortans :-)

You may be right that when played aside from a Magistratum warband that it might not live up to its points cost. Try it out a few times and then let us know what you think.

However, I am absolutely certain that when played in a Magistratum warband that it is very good value for points.