I have never played any theme forces myself, though I've considered a couple (I liked the idea of advanced-deploying Pathfinder AKs in Strakhov's old theme, Black Ops I think it was called, but I really didn't think you could fit enough armour cracking into that list to make it useable in my, heh, "meta"... sorry, in-joke.), so I don't really have much to say about what theme forces "should" do, but from what I hear it does sound like they can stifle creativity if they are too good.
So what would I like from a Khador theme force? Personally I still like the idea of playing Morrowans in Khador; I don't see that happening right now, but perhaps some day in the future PP will explore the Morrowan theme a little more, and maybe when that happens Khador will get to join in on the fun a little bit.
Here is my guess for a Man o War Theme.
Khador Theme - Shock Assault
Any Khador Warcaster and Non Character Warjack
Any Man o War Unit
+ UA, WA
Man o War Solos
Assault Kommandos + UA, WA
For every 25pts spent on Man o war units and UA's - Add a free Med based solo, UA or max unit of Mechanics
Assault Kommandos gain Advanced Deployment
After deployment you may redeploy 1 unit, kovnic and marshalled jack or All Man o War Solos to a legal space
Marshaled Jacks Gain Shield Guard
What do you think?
So what I think the case is:
- MoW Theme, with some more niche restrictions
- WG Theme, with less restrictions (by large because it's the representation of the bread and butter lore Khador)
My guess is on a WG and Iron Fang theme. Both have plenty of models and wont need any releases for a theme force. I really hope the WG theme does something to make the WGI more viable. Every time I play against Trenchers and my head boggles from trying to remember all their special rules, I wonder why we can't have some of that utility and a bit less of the cannon fodder.
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I think we'll recieve some of that utility. I think Relentless Charge is almost a given and also would be very much in theme with our Thornwood/5th Border forces. I don't dare asking for much more though, as said Winter Guard are better as most are willing to give credit for. You don't want to play them into gunlines but that's the whole point of them aswell .
I believe that the Iron Fang theme will be kept for another book. Man-O-War Theme and Winter Guard Theme have been put onto display and talk so often that I think this is exactly what we'll get now. Unfortunatly it will also mean that Kozlov will not recieve a character Jack as we'll likely see that Man-O-War Battle Engine.
Leading to the possible new models being:
- Man-O-Battle Engine
- Man-O-War Forge Seer (another MoW solo to consider)
- Sorscha 3 (Winter Guard queen)
- Winter Guard Artillery Kapitan (another free WG solo to consider)
I used to really like the old Butcher1 Claws of the Dragon theme.
36, slightly reduced cost, Pikemen that could move up to 18" on turn 1, with a bonus to the starting roll.
I wouldn't mind seeing it come back and usable by more casters.
My favorite old tier list was Charge of the Horse lord so here's hoping there is an theme force that allows all the ponies.
After the way the forums have been going, giving us a Theme force with MOAR ROCKETS! is asking for trouble :P the Smart Money is on giving themselves this 4 month breather until our Forces Book comes out.
So to add to our hype and speculation train, Menoth just got their themes.
The first is a Flameguard theme. Feora dialed up to 11. For every 20 points of Flameguard units they get a free solo or attachment. Plus, warjacks gain Girded (cool for them... that sounds like a hard counter now to much of our anti stealth tech). And, one of their Daughters of the Flame unit get Ambush. That's super cool (for them).
The second is a jack theme. For every 25 points they get an eligible solo (or 3 wrecks), plus their solos and the Choir get Reposition 3". Friendly models and units begin the game with upkeeps out. I'm not a menoth player but this also seems legit.
Still I think double shock trooper boat is sorta niche, and the other MOW need help to be worth fielding.
There wasn't a lot of middle ground, they were either really, really good or limiting for fluff with no actual benefits.