I've been playing with S&D for a bit now and have been constantly been underwhelmed and perplexed by Deflection (especially compared to similar spells). Specifically looking at S&D Deflection and Slaughterhousers.
When I break it down I see this:
- POW of their weapons are significantly higher than RAT for the average units/models. The shift between DEF and ARM is not anywhere near the same large span for average models (specifically, Slaughterhousers). This means that, especially given the bell curve effect, increasing DEF or lowing RAT is much more effective than increasing ARM or lowing POW (edit by vintersbastard for mathfans).
- There are more options for increasing RAT or chance to hit than increasing POW of ranged weapons (Dan from Chicago).
- For multi-damage and already high ARM infantry Deflection might eventually catch up or overtake DEF boosts....but the farrow do not currently have multi-damage heavy infantry, slaughterhousers ARM is not high, and S&D are specifically setup to work with slaughterhousers given Tier benefits.
Against a common POW ranged weapon of 10-12, they are damaging Slaughterhousers on 4-6 normally (92.62% to 72.18% odds) and with Deflection are damaging on 6-8 (41.64 to 72.18%) of the time assuming normal 2d6 and no other boosts/bonuses. So, Deflection increases survival a flat 20-30% against the small shots. More powerful shots are common, and Deflection is less effective (net survival chance) against higher POW.
Certainly better than nothing.
Common Blast damage is around 8, and so normally disabling on a 8+ (41.64%) and 10+ with Deflection (16.65%).
Lets compare this to two similar spells (Control Area Benefits increasing survival etc)
1. Fog of War. Concealment to everything will give a similar (or better given low RATs) survival chance....except it also benefits all non-warrior models. Also, it triggers special abilities such as Prowl/Camo etc. Farrow do not have prowl/camo, but Thornfall does and our beasts could still benefit from the increase.
2. Solid Ground. Immune to blast damage is FAR more effective than Deflection regarding Blasts. Although it does not help against small arms direct hits directly, Tough Slaughterhousers would love 33% chance to shrug off anything. As is, even making a Tough check against a ranged attack basically nullifies that SH for a turn, if not 2. Again, Solid Ground also benefits the non-warrior abilities and would help screen S&D...
If Deflection affected all models (beasts) I could see it being worth it, but compared to other options I just really don't see what this spell does for the farrow or why S&D have it compared to Solid Ground especially.
The one thing in Deflection's favour is that situationally concealment/cover can be added on for DEF boosts as well, where something like Fog of War cannot get add-ons for DEF/ARM based on terrain (cover yes, but replaces).