Haley's very favorite robot, an artifact from her first days as a warcaster, has been endlessly refitted, rebuilt, and upgraded with the most advanced arc node technology available to Cygnaran military science.
|ARM|| 16 / 18|
|(★) 18 when you include the Shield bonus|
|See also How to Read the statblock|
Weapons and Attacks
- Disruption Spear - 2" reach, P+S 14 melee weapon.
- Disruption - A warjack hit will lose all focus points. It also can't gain focus or channel spells for one round.
- Shock Shield - 0.5" reach, P+S 11 melee weapon.
- Shield - This 'weapon' is a shield that provides a cumulative +2 ARM bonus. The bonus doesn't apply if the weapon is crippled or if the damage originates in your back arc.
- Cortex Damage - When a warjack is hit by this weapon, it suffers 1 damage point to its first available Cortex system box.
- Shock Field - If a warjack hits this model, after the attack that warjack suffers a point of damage to its cortex.
- Warjack - All warjacks share the same set of special rules. Most notably being big and stompy.
- Construct - This model is a construct and is not a living model.
- Arc Node - This model can channel spells cast by its controlling Warcaster.
- Bond: (Haley) - If this model begins the game in Haley's battlegroup, it is bonded to them. This model is not considered to be bonded while under your opponent's control. While this model is bonded to Haley and in their control range, Haley can channel spells through it as if it were not engaged.
- Dodge - When an enemy misses this model with an attack at any time except when it is advancing, this model immediately advance 2" ignoring free strikes.
- Reaction Drive - Thorn can make a short move once per turn after a spell is arced through him.
- Set Defense - Charge attacks, slam attacks, and impact attacks versus this model suffer a -2 to hit penalty.
Thoughts on Thorn
Thorn in a nutshell
Every Warcaster is fighting over the use of Thorn these days. It does everything a Lancer does and more...for a trivial number of extra points. Reaction Drive can change charge vectors and act as a straight threat extender, which you can double up on if you arc spells just as Telekinesis through its Arc Node. Dodge turns it into an utter nuisance, especially when you consider that Set Defense makes it quite hard to hit for most models without boosting.
Its bond with Haley means that her assassination runs can be very hard to stop, particular with Major Victoria Haley and her Telekinesis shenanigans.
Compared to a base Lancer, Thorn gains
- Extra melee hitting power; extra MAT, extra POW, and disruption on its spear.
- Extra mobility; the reaction drive and Dodge speed it up and help it get odd places.
- Extra survivability; dodge means that if anyone misses an attack in melee against it it just walks out of combat and the other attacks are wasted.
This is generally considered worthwhile.
Combos & Synergies
Do you want to arc a spell with any sort of regularity? If yes, then you should probably consider taking Thorn. It can be dropped into almost any Warcaster's list and be well worth its points.
- Any iteration of Victoria Haley really likes taking Thorn
- He can be particularly obnoxious with Major Victoria Haley and Major Prime Victoria Haley due to their DEF buffs and the increased chance of activating Dodge.
- Since it can be channelled through even when engaged, almost any of their spells, particularly the offensive ones, are a serious threat to the enemy.
- As ever, Arcane Shield is a good pick. Thorn is a big target, especially with Haley, so being able to buff its DEF and ARM can really spoil your opponent's day.
Drawbacks & Downsides
- Its popularity. In a Steamroller format tourney with 2 or more lists you will be hard-pressed to decide, which list it should be put into.
- This is less of an issue with character restrictions being a possible variations, rather than the rule.
- Seriously, when compared to a Lancer, there are virtually no downsides. It's better in melee than a Lancer thanks to its better MAT and improved P+S on its spear (and Disruption!), its special rules synergise so well with so many casters. Unless you really want something that is 3 points, you are almost always better off taking Thorn over a standard Lancer.
Tricks & Tips
- He is now one of only two non-warcaster models in faction with straight disruption (the other being the lightning pod on the stormwall). All the other sources are critical disruption. Use this to your advantage.
Reaction Drive has a few uses:
- Move it forward, arc a spell through it then use the move to get out of charge range or into a defensive position.
- Arc a spell through it first and use it as a threat extender for Thorn's own charge or to arc a further spell through it that has a shorter range.
- Haley2 in particular can do all of this while Thorn is engaged, potentially putting it deep into enemy lines.
- Even if your Warcaster doesn't have any offensive spells you want to cast, Arcing a support spell through Thorn onto a friendly unit or even Thorn itself is a good way to activate Reaction Drive.
- Arcing Telekinesis adds 5" to its movement between the two. In a straight line, it can engage nearly any unit, even cavalry from outside of their threat range.
- Watch out for targeted system destruction; models with the Marksman/Precision Strike rule will decrease the usefulness of Thorn pretty fast, and it usually operates too forward to enjoy the support of the repair crews.
Comparison to Mk2
Dodge went from being an Imprint to being an innate ability.
- Originally released in Warmachine: Legends (2008)
- Heavy Metal, but only if taken in Haley's battlegroup.
- Sons of the Tempest, but only if taken in Haley's battlegroup.
- Storm Division, but only if taken in Haley's battlegroup.
Other faction models