Saturday, 15 January 2011

Comparing the Lanterns - part two

So, now it's on to the Green Lantern of sector 2814.3:-

Guy Gardner

Justice League gave us Gardner at Super-rare. DC75th gave us Gardner at Rare. This means that not only is the earlier Gardner (called Green Lantern in that Justice League) from an out of print set (2007), but that he was hard to get within that set. This might be mitigated by the 5 weeks of sealed tournaments held at the time, meaning potentially more boosters were opened. Meanwhile the DC75th version is not only current but easier to get than the likes of Sinestro.

Both figures are ranked as Veteran. The Justice League version represents Gardner as a member of the Green Lantern Honour Guard, while the DC75th version is Gardner while he was wielding both a Green and Red ring.
This gives the DC75th version an edge in themery as it has become an iconic, recent image of him that has proven popular with the fans of the Blackest Night storyline.
Like with Sinestro, this only denotes two important things about the pair. You can run multiples of either figure, and you can't run them in Rookie-only tournaments.

Both figures have the following Keywords; Green Lantern Corps and Justice League International. This allows you a choice when fielding thematic teams with either of these keywords.  
DC75th Gardner only adds Red Lantern Corps to his list. This allows him to theme with 2 other figures at the moment (not including White Lantern Hal Jordan), which doesn't add a huge amount of scope. Especially since their point values mean that he and Mera are a 200 point team, or the two of them and Atrocitus are a 400 point team. They do look good when fielded together though :)
Justice League Gardner instead adds Super Buddies and Warrior to his keywords. This not only gives him another team to work with that fans of the character will probably be familiar with, but it also gives him a generic one. This gives him a much wider range of figures he can theme with.

Justice League Gardner is 133 points. DC75th Gardner is 110.
This is only a differance of 13 points. Thats not much of a clincher when deciding which one to fit in a team. So the decision, if not based on Keywords, comes down to capability.

Both figures are Fliers with one lightning bolt, range 8. DC75th Gardner has two advantages. Firstly he is Indomitable and secondly he has a trait;

The Antagonist If Guy Gardner has no action tokens, he can use Close Combat Expert.

This allows him to not only act two turns in a row without pushing, but also gives him the option of being able to do more damage on the first of those actions, if he is already based by an opponent. Combine that with his other powers and he is not someone you want to be facing in close combat.  Not sure why it has the same name as DC75th Sinestro's trait though.
However, it's not all in his favour. Justice League Gardner has the Green Lantern Corp team ability. This traditionally appears to be quite expensive, but makes him very useful as a taxi, especially as more of his keywords have characters that can't fly. This seems counter-intuitive for the character though, putting him in a support role compared to his counterparts beatstick incarnation.

On his starting click, DC75th Gardner seems the stronger. Move 12 Phasing/Teleport (Green Lantern Of Sector 2814.3), Attack 11, Defense 17 Energy Shield/Deflection (Green And Red Auras) and Damage 4 Exploit Weakness (Guy, Are You Ok?, remember this can be 6 with careful positioning).
He has no soak, but high move ignoring terrain and high defense against range allow him to move up to the close combat position he wants to be in. Don't be too quick to rush him in though, as this is one of the few clicks he can make ranged attacks from.

Justice League Gardner's starting click is "interesting". Move 10 Charge (Bring It On!), Attack 10 Energy Explosion (Power Ring), Defense 16 Invulnerability (Power Ring) and Damage 2 Close Combat Expert (Troubleshooter).
Gardner here wants to be doing many things. He wants to be based so he can do more damage, but his Charge doesn't quite go with his bare damage value. He can damage grouped swarms at range though, and he does have decent soak. Shame his defence value is so low.

Dc75th Gardner switches to Charge (Reckless Attack) for two clicks, then Flurry (Rage's Red Light) for two clicks before Phasing returns on his last click. The value steadily drops til it hits 8 and stays there.
From his third click, he gains Quake (Chainsaw Swipe) for two clicks before switching to Blades/Claws/Fangs (Oh, This Chainsaw Really Works) for his last three. 10 Attack for the Quake and 9 Attack for the Blades makes him a decent close combat attacker.
His defence values steadily drop however, this Gardner doesn't care if he his hit, reaching 15 before a final click return to 16. This is accompanied by soak though. Second and fourth click Toughness (I'm The Greatest Green Lantern) sandwiching third click Energy Shield is followed by a final three clicks of Invulnerability (Honour Guard). He will get hit, but he will take plenty of damage before he falls.
Second click Exploit is accompanied by a drop to 3, from his third click he gets Battle Fury (Rarggh!) which he finally loses for his last click. This only gives him 3 clicks to take advantage of his range of 8, before he becomes a close combat maniac.
Finally, he can benefit from the Green Lantern special object for 7 of his 7 clicks and the Red Lantern special object for 4 of his 7 clicks, making either or both of these objects useful to him.

Justice League Gardner keeps his Charge for four clicks before picking up two clicks of a special power;

In Your Face Green Lantern can use Flurry. If both attacks using Flurry target a single opposing character, modify Green Lantern's damage value by +1 for the second attack.  

This is an interesting variation on Flurry, as it allows him to do more damage against one character. Shame his damage is low on these clicks, but it allows his second attack to beat soak. His last two clicks have no power, and his move ends on a very low 6.
On his third click he gains three clicks of Super Strength (Power Ring, a lot of his power have this name) before the final three get Telekinesis (Power Ring) giving him some options. His values yo-yo dropping to 8 then back to 10 then back to 8 again.
His two clicks of soak drop to two clicks of Toughness (Power Ring) then two clicks of Willpower (Arrogant) and finally two clicks of Energy Shield/Deflection (Power Ring, final time). His defence stays low with the second Willpower click spiking at 17 and his final click has a very low 14.
His initial click gives way to three clicks of Enhancement (Lantern Honour Guard) which again makes him more of a support figure and his final two clicks have Ranged Combat Expert (Beware My Power) which can give him a final bit of punch, if he isn't already based.
Finally, he can only benefit from the Green Lantern special object for 2 out of his 9 clicks, making it not worth including for just him.

This means that Justice League Gardner has 1 more click of health than his counterpart. That and his team ability means that his combat values are on average lower compared to the DC75th version than their point values would suggest.

In summary, I would much rather run the DC75th version. His focus on doing one thing means that he does it well, whereas his counterpart is trying to do so many things he does none of them reliably. He is a support figure, but because he is also an attacker he costs too much for that role, but isn't good enough to be the main attacker. At nearly half the 300 point build, he isn't up to the job. His combat values make him not even worth taking in higher builds.

Red Lantern Guy Gardner is far superior. With careful use he can tear apart figures that are twice his cost, and in 300 points you still have two thirds of your team to build with. His sculpt is also really good :)

Next time, a review of an artist.

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