This thread has been created as a place for any discussion around the subject of alternations to Spiny Growth leveraged to cover any gaps between the Carnivean and his point cost. It was originally brought up in the C-Rex thread. I created this thread so that additional brainstorming in that thread can continue without this suggestion bogging it down.
A summary of what brought this suggestion forward is as follows:
Discussions and direct comparisons of the Carnivean and other Warjacks and Warbeasts have encouraged some members of the Legion Forums that the Carnivean does not live up to his point cost of 11 points in his current incarnation. Specific suggestions for improvement can be viewed in the original thread. This thread proposes the following change to the Carnivean Animus:
The reason that an improvement on the Carnivean's animus is sufficient to lock in his value at 11 points is because the Carnivean is already very close to a value of 11 points and that solutions revolving around adjustments to his statline may not make him sufficiently competitive against other Legion choices.Spiny Growth - Cost: 2 - RNG 6 / No / No
Target model gains +3 ARM. A Warbeast or Warjack hitting the affected model with a melee attack suffers d3 damage points after the attack is resolved. Spiny Growth lasts for one round.
This solution is not designed to make the Carnivean 'better'.
Instead, this solution leverages the Carnivean's animus as a force multiplier so that the presence of the Carnivean makes other parts of Legion work better in a limited, but practical, set of circumstances. It is the belief of the author that the Carnivean is already competitive. Further 'improvement' to the Carnivean risks the escalation of power that is counter-intuitive to the changes that will be introduced in Mark II.
Instead, by improving something unique to the Carnivean that improves it's counterparts, it intensifies the competitiveness of the Carnivean in relation to other 11 point purchases.
Evaluating the appropriateness of this animus inside Legion, we accept that Legion has many offensive tools but is not limited solely to offensive tools. This is why Legion also has defensive mechanics. And while Legion favors an offensive style of play, this should be a preference not a limitation.
In the case of this defensive animus in an offensive faction, using this animus has an offensive opportunity cost - In regards to the Carnivean, any time this animus is used, it can potentially be sacrificing two of it's high damage attacks. In regards to a Warlock using this animus, it comes at the cost of healing, spell-casting, or special abilities.
The animus does not overshadow other any other animus, most notably Tenacity, which is priced more competitively and offers a coveted bonus to DEF. Neither does it overshadow Excessive Healing, which creates an immunity to automatic 1 point damage abilities that high ARM will never attain.
This change provides something unique to the Carnivean that no other beast can marginalize. It absolutely ensures that it is worth it's 11 point price tag, and will allow it to make a competitive bid for list space for armies with compositions that could take advantage of +ARM.
It is Warlock neutral - It favours no Warlock above another. All can benefit from this animus.
Most importantly, this suggestion is not invasive. The precedent for Legion receives an +ARM spell is already in place. The price and range of that animus have already been determined. Players will not be confused or alarmed by a sudden change of dynamics. It is straightforward and intuitive.
Please consider play-testing with this suggestion. It ensures a solid lock for 11 points.