Thursday, September 12, 2013

Better Know Your Malifaux 007: Lady Justice

As the defenders of humanity in Malifaux, the Guild are beset on all sides by enemies, both within their ranks and without. While the Neverborn and the Gremlins threaten to overwhelm the Guild with sheer numbers, the Ten Thunders and Acanists work to tear down their plans on Malifaux's city streets.  Each faction is set on increasing their own power, but none of these threats are so insidiously corrupting as the Resurrectionists, the dark practitioners of the necromantic arts.  It is this enemy that the enigmatic Lady Justice has dedicated herself to combating, leading her Death Marshals in expunging the Resurrectionist taint wherever it can be found.

 Like the eye of a hurricane, Justice remains calm in the whirl of battle, directing her troops with steadfast discipline and executing her mission with a placid efficiency.  Justice is a force of nature with her Greatsword - Her combat prowess is second to none and with her Critical Strike trigger she can take out even Howard Langston with a single well-placed blow.  If an enemy has the nerve to take a swing at her, Lady Justice will punish the attacker for a miss with a deadly Riposte.  If she needs a little boost, the Vendetta Trigger gives her two more triggers - Onslaught gives her additional attacks and Vengeance gives her a positive on damage, letting her cheat the flip in a greater variety of situations.

The Judge and the rest of the Marshals hold Lady Justice in the highest of esteem, not just as their leader but also as a paragon of their office.  When she kills a model in close combat her Inspiring Swordplay inspires them to fight harder.  With the Last Stand upgrade she gains the ability to ignore terrain and bring her Marshals with her on a charge, allowing her Crew to stay within her inspirational range.  Restore Natural Order lets her keep a level playing field for her team - removing all conditions from everyone within range.

As deadly as she is in close combat, and as effective as she is as a leader, Lady Justice offers no support to her Crew at range.  With no shooting or casting at her disposal she is dependent on terrain and speed to close the gap between her and her opponent.  The healing ability of Juggernaut and the safety offered by Covering Fire help her survive as she crosses the board, but she can also benefit from the added protection of either the Thalarian Stone or the Badge of Office upgrades.

In the event that she is called to face a Resurrectionist on the tabletop, she has a whole bag of tricks available to her that specifically counter their strengths.  Final Repose allows her to ensure that anything she kills stays dead, while the Justice Unleashed upgrade lets her clear any corpses that fall to the weapons of others and gives her a powerful burst attack versus undead.  Flames of the Pit turns the table on the Marshals' terrifying quarry, making Justice's crew immune to Horror and giving them all their own Horror vs. Undead.

Because the Death Marshals protect the citizens of Malifaux from the most horrific of enemies they have earned a place in the hearts of the populace,  Lady Justice in particular is placed high on a pedestal.  What is not as well known is the price they have had to pay to keep the peace.  Each Death Marshal learns elements of the dark arts, knowledge that corrupts the body and the mind.  Unlike her Guild Marshal allies, Lady Justice appears physically untouched by the ravages of this forbidden knowledge.  What is not known is what effect it has had on her psyche.  As the Avatar of Balance Lady Justice walks the thin line between life and death, between sanity and madness.  She holds the centre line for the sake of humanity, and she will hold it as long as she is able.

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