Scenario Breakdown: Chaos Theory
In this ongoing series on scenarios, I’ll share my thoughts on each scenario. We’ll consider the scenario’s effect on Deployment, the BattleLadder, the End Phase, and each champion.
Chaos is a really fun scenario which I enjoy very much. Chaos favors mobile champions who can quickly adapt to the... well... chaotic nature of the scenario. Hexes can pop up anywhere, so you need champions who can get across the board. The ladder is short, so brutality can only get you so far. This is a scenario which rewards players who can quickly re-orient themselves to radically changing board state well enough to still play banners.
Some players don't like chaos. I imagine that the swings annoy them. I like it quite a bit because I enjoy being forced to adapt to novel situations. Regardless of your feelings about the scenario, it is very true to its name in the sense that well-laid plans don't last long and adaptability is at a premium.
Here is the losing player bonus:
In the end phase of each turn, the player who lost the turn may place one objective hex on any empty hex on the battlefield.
It's exquisitely simple, but highly flexible and thus very impactful. Objective hexes can never be in deployment zones, and this board has big deployment zones, but this is still a very flexible end phase mechanic. This is can be a very powerful effect if you have the right champions to exploit it. Someone like Jaak, Mourneblade, or Kailinn who can plant a flag in a far away place and still be relevant to the clash phase will really help you make the most of Chaos. This end phase mechanic is strong enough that Dave recommends losing turn 1 on Chaos.
Chaos has the most bizarre (and chaotic) deployment options you'll see in Godtear. You may deploy 2 hexes in on any part of the perimeter which is on your half of the board. This means that models might potentially start adjacent to the enemy! What's more, if you deploy a model in the two rows closest to the center and furthest in, that model will only be two hexes away from the objectives. Most champions will be able to claim turn 1!
In addition to letting you get into the action right away, this deployment setup allows you to really spread follower units around the board more than any other. Units like the Unburnt Reavers, Golden Shrikes, and Hexlings may want to do this in order to distribute some of their support abilities across a wide area.
One last thing: there are only 4 hexes between the starting zones. Lane changing is relatively easy in Chaos. It happens a lot.
Although the action starts immediately, Chaos is sneakily a banner-focused scenario. There are only seven steps on the ladder, which means a single lucky maelstrom activation can max out the ladder. This is not to say that clash phase steps won't matter, but the small ladder will substantially influence when scoring binges actually translate to victory points. Timing will be essential. Models which can claim and protect banners at range will benefit from this scenario.
This is the scenario emphasizes mobility and flexibility. A wide range of models can be good here, but you especially want models which can adapt to sudden, radical changes in the banner game. This is not a scenario that settles into a static grind within pre-established lanes. Instead, chaos is very fluid and, you know, chaotic.
Finvarr - He'll do well. The swift elf ninja can change lanes, and his ultimate can potentially stash banners in far flung places. It will be hard for Finvarr to get his accuracy bonus, though, given the small number of hexes on the board.
Halftusk - Not ideal. He's slow and prefers situations where models bunch up together. Chaos tends to spread things out and mix them up. The froglodytes can completely clog up an objective, but this won't last.
Helena - No thanks. There aren't many hexes for her to stand on, and she's not really great at hunting far away banners. Any opponent with good control effects doesn't have to work too hard to shut her down here.
Jaak - Yeah! Ranged claiming is incredibly good on Chaos. He can also scoot around the board really well. His healing won't be as impactful, but he's got a good toolkit for this traveling brawl. At the same time that Jaak can get around the board, he can also slow your opponent down with the hit effect of Spider Staff.
Mourneblade - This scenario is very good for Mourneblade. The undying a-hole brings ranged claiming, ranged attacks, speed denial, and an indifference to death. These are all very handy on Chaos. It's very nice to lose a turn, put a hex somewhere far, far from the action, and then claim on it at range 3.
Rodhri - This is just ok for Rhodri. He can set up close to the objectives, which is nice. He can't really react quickly to the big swings, though. Rhodri will often end up squatting on an objective not far from where he deployed, just watching the action unfold somewhere else.
Blackjaw - Sure. The short ladder hurts him, but his crew has speed to burn, which really helps. Hotfoots and Rushes are great here.
Grimgut - This is a good spot for the tub of rotten guts. He can roll across the board and completely encircle a lone objective hex with slime.
Jeen - She loves this scenario! Jeen and her crew can support speed and positioning all over the board. Not only do the golden gobbos react well to the wild swings of this scenario, they help your whole warband to do so. Jeen's lack of explosiveness is not as bad on a short ladder.
Luella - This is a good spot for Luella. She can cover a lot of ground quickly. Her scoring is not explosive, but the short ladder means that you don't care as much.
Titus - He's just ok here. Roar of Battle is a gem, but he's a bit slower and squishier than you'd like in Chaos. Still, big attacks are always welcome.
Kailinn - Absolutely. She can zoom across the board to plant a flag and then zoom back to do murders in the same turn. You'll have to finesse the timing of her scoring binges a bit, but it's manageable.
Raith’ Marid - Yeah. He's elite all the time. This scenario really plays to his strengths since he can get to far away places as well as anyone. Tsunami won't do quite as much work as usual, but he's still excellent here.
Lilly - She's good here. Her speed and efficient support are welcome. Control effects are good on this scenario because they exaggerate the effects of the end phase mechanic. Her ultimate can really clog up the small scoring zones.
Nia - So so. She's not especially fast, but the end phase mechanics can let her build a little rock garden in the corner. This has limited upside, though, as she won't really be able to get across the board and influence the rest of the game.
Rattlebone - Nah. She likes popping her ult when everyone is clustered up. This scenario tends to spread out.
Shayle - Yes. Landslide's ability to be everywhere you need (it?) comes up huge in this scenario. Landslide is the Roy Kent of Chaos.
Styx - This is a good Styx spot. The not so grim reaper can haunt and dominate a cluster while also sending his super fast hounds to threaten the new clusters that pop up far away.
Keera - Only so so. The Dragons can help her project threat at long range, which is helpful in a scenario where everyone is flying around. However, Keera will struggle to threaten the objectives that appear in random parts of the board.
Lorsann - This is a very good Lorsann scenario. She has the mobility to adapt to the changing objectives and the range to threaten champions no matter what strange parts of the board they run off to.
Maxen - In a pinch, it's not bad. His long-ranged attacks aren't especially strong, except for his ultimate. That ultimate does matter, though. The Gearhawks will be wherever the need to be, and Scavenger means that if Maxen can get a KO, it doesn't matter how far away that champion's banner was. Still, he's slow and this scenario is somewhat unfriendly to slower champs.
Morrigan - Yeah, why not? Her speed boon from the Cold Bones will have her zooming all over the place.
Rangosh - Yeah he's fine here. He can start right in your opponent's face and has enough speed to get where he needs to go.
Sneaky Peet - Sure! He's mobile enough to get to the new hexes wherever they appear. His high dodge makes him resistant to control effects, which is especially useful on this scenario.
Skullbreaker - Oh for sure. He has the mobility you need. His massive area-denial pressure is always welcome.
Chaos is fun. This is true in general, but also in Godtear particularly. Champions fly all over the board, and the turn's loser has a great opportunity to turn the tables. Chaos is not for those who like to stick to a game plan, though. Choosing a mobile warband is really essential.