Seeds from the Skies
This is the second in a series going through all the current Shasvastii profiles. Today we will be covering the jump troop of the Shasvastii Continuum, the Cadmus!
I love jump troops. I try and take them in as many lists as I can, but when it comes to the Cadmus, it becomes a liability in a lot of ways. Let’s go over the rules first, and what they bring to the table, then the profiles, and finally what I’m hoping see from the Cadmus in the future.
Cadmus start as a Seed-Embryo much like the Seed-Soldiers discussed in the previous profiles article. The seed profile is identical to the Seed-Soldier, other than it has PH11. The developed shape profile has 4-4 MOV, BS11, WIP & PH of 12, 1 ARM & Wound. Nothing super exciting, and the BS11 is below average when it comes to the rest of the Shasvastii profiles.
The Cadmus seed is a little different, it doesn’t come into the game with the Limited Camouflage skill, instead it is equipped with an antipersonnel mine and Electric Pulse. With the mine you can create some interesting decision points for your opponent, if you land the seed where you want it.
This gets into the biggest downside to the Cadmus as jump seeds. If you read through the Seed-Embryo rules, you will find this:
Seed-Embryo that scatters off the battlefield will need to spend 2 Orders to appear on the border of the table, at the same point where it left. It is hatched when placed on the table.http://wiki.infinitythegame.com/en/Seed-Embryo
This is a huge failure tax, especially considering seeds are only PH11, so you can expect to fail your jumps around 45% of the time. That’s a huge risk, and usually leads to either very safe jump locations to mitigate going off the table, or bringing the E-Drone for +3 to all combat jumps.
Obviously the Cadmus also have the same issues as other seed profiles, in that they have to spend a short skill to hatch, which if you are in LOF of an enemy, it will trigger a normal roll ARO. Not only that, but it really slows down your jump troop, as you have to spend another order just to become usable.
After the Seeds have hatch and finally become Cadmus, they have the familiar Shasvastii rule (I covered it in the previous Seed-Soldier profile review), and Morpho-Scan.
Morpho-scan allows a Cadmus to replace its MOV, CC, BS, and PH attributes with the stats from a target inside the Cadmus’ zone of control. The target cannot be a unit with STR instead of Wounds. In the lore of Infinity, Sheskiin was a lowly Cadmus soldier that Morpho-scanned Achilles, and she has been terrorizing the human sphere ever since.
Morpho-scan also lets a user spend a full order to pick up a weapon from an enemy that has been Morpho-scanned. The enemy must be unconscious. But, outside of panoplies, this is the only way to get a weapon outside of a Combi Rifle or Boarding Shotgun for the Cadmus.
This is a pretty cool skill on paper, but not one that I’ve utilized organically in a game before, usually creating a list for the sole purpose of Morpho-scaning Sheskiin. I think if Cadmus weren’t such a risky investment you would see this come into play much more. (Just like the Cadmus itself).
The Cadmus has 3 standard profiles, that only change weapon loadouts and costs. The Cadmus has no specialist profiles, which is another reason we don’t see them used more often. They’re also lacking when it comes to Special Weapons, only having a Combi + Light Grenade Launcher profile. Each Cadmus is equipped with an Assault Pistol though, which is a fantastic weapon.
For 23 points you can snag the Cadmus with a Combi Rifle, the baseline profile. More likely, and the profile I take each time, is the Boarding Shotgun for 1 point less, at 22. With the Boarding Shotgun you get a weapon that is great for up-close assaults on your enemy, and a template mode to catch troops that are positioned close together. The +6 bonus at close range gives the Cadmus a much needed boost in BS.
You can also take the Combi Rifle + Light Grenade Launcher option for 27 points and 1 SWC. I’m not sure this profile is ever the answer, unless it is an extreme corner case of you Morpho-scanned a powerful target, and are able to spec fire grenades on multiple units at once. To be fair, this profile, and Cadmus in general, did get a lot better with the ITS Season X allowing jump troops to land anywhere their base fits. I just don’t think you are going to be spending the SWC to fit this profile into your list very often.
I know I probably will say this during every profile article, but I really love the Cadmus model. If they don’t re-sculpt it, I won’t be sad at all. If they do, I really hope they keep the general design, because it is fantastic.
In the Third Offensive book that came out last year they describe the new Decoy rule using the Cadmus as the example.
During the Active Turn, a Shasvastii player deploys a Cadmus Soldier, a trooper possessing the Decoy Special Skill, on the game table using the AD: Combat Jump Special Skill. The player places one of the three Decoys (a Seed-Embryo Marker or one of the two Decoy Markers) on the table. After determining the final position of the Decoy, applying Dispersion if the PH Roll is failed, the player places the other two Decoys, following the Deployment general conditions. Applying the Decoy rules, one of the three must be the real user. The next step is to perform a Deployment Phase Coherency Check, only to discover that one of the Decoys is not inside the ZoC of either of the other two. So, the player must adjust its position to be inside the ZoC of at least one of them.
Although I was disappointed that they didn’t update the Cadmus profile with all the other Third Offensive updates last year, I’m so hype about this change. First of all this gives Shasvastii another shell game, which is awesome, but this can also mitigate bad dispersions when you fail your combat jump roll. I CAN’T WAIT!!!
I really hope that Cadmus also get some new profiles. A Specialist profile would be amazing, and any new SWC weapon profiles would also be greatly appreciated.
The Cadmus are such fantastic models I really just want more opportunities to add them to my lists, and not just to troll Jeff. I’d love to hear any comments you have when it comes to the Cadmus, or anything else. Thanks for reading.