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EpicChris

Tactics for the Brewers Guild

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In tandem with @Makoexcellent beginner player rundowns, this is a post for beginner tactics for the Brewers Guild to improve our new player resources. It is not intended to be a bible nor do I propose this is the only way to play Brewers. Please feel free to suggest your own tactics that would be useful to a beginner here. I will outline a few strategies I have played myself which may or may not be helpful. Together we will try to make this a useful guide for beginner players - remember this is not designed for the 'expert' or top-level play.

Play style

The Brewers play style lends itself towards beatdown scrums with sudden break away goals – think a rugby team in effect. They are quite durable, have low KDs in their playbooks and want to get into a fight. However they are not dumb brawlers and have a few tricks in their Character Plays and Heroics. Indeed they have more Heroics than any other Guild. So accumulating Momentum causes the Guild to Power Up and become even stronger. They aren’t Butchers and are often not easily rewarded for causing DMG, but that doesn’t mean they shouldn’t and indeed many models are quite capable DMG dealers, with many ways in-Guild to boost DMG. So Brewers are a balancing act between doing what the Crowd wants and doing what is most efficient to win the game.

TIP: This guide will not discuss Union players. Partly because the minor guild will take these away, partly because this is a beginner guide.

1: Team Selection

Brewers are in the middle of a Guild power struggle between their two captains – Tapper and Esters. These captains are quite different and you may find that your natural playstyle favours one over the other, or that one works better into certain guilds. It is recommended that you try both.

Captain Tapper

Tapper as a captain likes to pick a zone on the pitch and make it a Danger Zone for enemy models to linger in. He is happy punching faces, supporting his team through Character Plays and just being hard to kill. His simplest function will be as an effective beatstick but he is capable of much more.

Tapper is not especially fast (a trade mark of the Guild) but his 2” melee is extremely useful for attacking players and avoiding counters, or circumventing special abilities such as Unpredictable Movement. He has pretty standard captain stats – a little low on defence but he also possesses Tough Hide which can make him surprisingly durable and one of the harder captains to take out. Throwing Tapper into the enemy unsupported isn’t his greatest strength, but Tapper can last quite a long time.

TIP: If Scum starts within 4” you can allocate a 6th INF to Tapper. You won’t always want Tapper to run hot like this, but it can be very useful on a beat down turn.

Tapper – The Commanding Aura King

One of Tapper’s signature abilities is his Character Play Commanding Aura. This Aura is simple enough – any friendly Guild models gain +1 TAC and +1 DMG to playbook DMG results (ie NOT Character Plays that do DMG). Tapper should ALWAYS have this up – even if he isn’t right next to enemies (as they might come to you). There are two ways he can activate Commanding Aura – hard cast it for 2 INF or try to trigger it in melee.

TIP: The only time it is not worth casting Commanding Aura is if the opponent is deliberately avoiding a scrum and attempting to ‘run the wings’. In this case, try to get Tapper closer to his key models and threaten them next turn.

TIP: Commanding Aura only requires that friendlies be within 4” – this can extend the threat of it much further.

His slow Jog speed of 4” means that unless an enemy is within 6”, you likely going to have to charge your target until the lines clash. Once they do, Tapper will probably last long enough that you won’t have to worry about this speed issue. When Tapper’s charge hits, if you are lucky you should end up with 4 successes – ALWAYS pick Commanding Aura unless a severe risk on the counter attack. With Command Aura up, Tapper’s TAC and DMG goes up substantially.

TIP: Commanding Aura is sometimes worth casting first before Tapper moves because the +1 TAC and +1 DMG are rewarded not only on the rest of his INF but also his team mates. Tapper wants Commanding Aura up one way or another. If you can walk to your enemy, or they are high DEF, always hard cast it.

TIP: Spigot’s Time’s Called is essential for Brewers as it mitigates their greatest weakness – speed. Putting up Time’s Called increases Tapper’s threat range substantially and can allow him to walk into melee, increasing the number of swings he can make. Also the Brewers are FULL of pushes – use these to push enemies into Tapper’s threat range.

If you had to KD (because you missed 4 successes or they threatened some sort of disengaging counter attack), spend 2 to cast Command Aura (see above). Once Tapper has charged if he didn’t KD, his subsequent attack should be to KD. From then on you have a choice but hopefully you are hitting his MOM 3 DMG (actually 4 DMG now under the Aura) or if you miss it, you can try 3 non-momentous DMG or a momentous Push.

TIP: Try to end Tapper’s activation with at least 2 momentum (preferably more) – you will want to fire Old Jakes as it increases your INF which is very powerful. Your other players can also each benefit from their Heroic Plays, especially Spigot with Time’s Called.

Once Commanding Aura is up, Tapper can concentrate on DMGing models and while he is alive, the enemy models near him are extremely vulnerable to Take Outs. This may focus your opponent on Tapper – but he is tough enough to take several hits and while not KD, you should heal him.

TIP: The point of Commanding Aura is to make all your friendly Brewer players much deadlier in melee. Given that they already have more TAC than columns, Commanding Aura boosts this effect even more. #Winning!

TIP: Tapper should consider KD multiple enemy models instead of doing DMG himself. This is to setup a No Win Scenario for the opponent who risks whomever is left on the floor getting annihilated by Hooper or Spigot.

Tapper isn’t just a beat stick. He has two other essential attributes – Marked Target and Old Jakes. Tapper can trigger Marked Target very easily in melee and should always do so if it will make the difference between a wasted activation by another player and them connecting. He can also risk firing it off at RNG to allow a teammate to attack a target.

TIP: If triggered in melee it AUTOMATICALLY hits whichever target you pick – which does not need to be the model you hit in melee.

TIP: Tapper can use this play on Turn 1 to sometimes put Hooper (or another Guild model) in range to charge an enemy model.

Old Jakes is a way to convert momentum into INF. INF is power and having more of it is extremely good. To maximise this you need unactivated models within 6” – in a scrum this won’t be a problem but if the enemy spread out you will have to be careful with Tapper’s positioning. Because Old Jakes is ALLOCATE not GAIN, you cannot put INF onto models that would take them above their maximum INF. This means you need to think ahead a little when allocating at the start of the turn – who is going to benefit from Old Jakes.

TIP: Aside about Allocate and Gain. Allocate is a game term and means you cannot exceed maximum INF. Gain is a separate term and does allow exceeding maximum INF.

TIP: To help make Old Jakes easier to use, consider having Scum hang around near Tapper or where Tapper will be going. Scum is a surprisingly good attacking model and when charging can benefit from wrapping its playbook – especially under Commanding Aura. Scum charging a model Tapper is engaging under Commanding Aura is rolling 9 dice and against models Tapper has KD, can often score 6+ DMG momentously. Scum can also just wander up to attack twice for similar effect – try to work out the probabilities on what is best.

Lastly, whilst Tapper is no footballer, he can strip balls effectively with easy KD and T on 3 columns (which against Commanding Aura helps). He usually won’t be in a position to score (unless you have aggressively pushed the enemy back to their goal), but he can KD engaged models easily enough and then pass the ball out to Friday or Spigot or Scum (as Scum will probably be hanging around). Don’t be afraid to Pass N Go the receiving model 4” to safety.

TIP: A word on pushes. Brewers have access to A LOT of pushes. While these are less glamorous than DMG, they can be much more useful. Being able to move enemy models is very effective. Some uses include

1.    Pushing enemy models out of cover

2.    Pushing enemy models out of their melee zone so they have to move to engage

3.    Pushing models into Ganging Up zones

4.    Pick Pushes on Counter Attacks to disengage enemy models

TIP: Remember that Pushes are combined into one push that must be in the same direction – you cannot change direction mid-push. So > & >> is a 3” Push in one straight direction. Don’t move a model around your base for example as you cannot bend a push like this.

Do not be afraid to pick a momentous push over DMG if there is a clear gain from it.

Suggested Beginner Team Selection

Tapper’s Lock In Crew: Tapper (C), Scum, Spigot1, Friday, Hooper, Stave

TIP: This line up is the Kick Off box set. This box is strongly recommended to new players as a cost effective way to start Guild Ball providing two teams, a pitch and all the gubbins you need to play.

TIP: Brewers are very versatile and I will discuss substitutions to the list below.

TIP: Stave is in the Kick Off set hence I have included him as a starter recommendation. He is somewhat divisive in the Brewer community so consider subbing him out. However he does have a few tricks.

Captain Esters

Esters is different to Tapper in that she is a support captain that can mix it up in melee. She is even slower than Tapper and only has 1” melee but she has a lot of tricks to her and her chief strength is her versatility. Esters can be given no INF and still really help her team or she can be loaded up and go to town on the enemy.

Esters is slow, low captain TAC and is easy to hit. But ignore her raw stats as her magic is everywhere else on her card. The core of Esters is her ability Empowered Voice. This lets her pick one model within 6”, including herself, to gain either +2” MOV, +1 DMG to melee attacks or +1 DEF. This is a free ability and the key to using Esters is knowing when to activate her to put this out. Her Legendary ability is she can do Empowered Voice 3 times – including on the same target.

TIP: Empowered Voice does NOT stack – if you pick the same model to gain the bonuses they must be separate bonuses so SPD and DEF for example. You cannot have x3 SPD on the same model. You CAN pick the same bonus for DIFFERENT models.

Esters the Beat Stick

Because of Empowered Voice (and her Legendary), Esters can make a surprisingly good beat stick. The +1 DMG combined with her short playbook and low DMG results mean she can reliably hit 3 DMG a hit, which if she can walk into melee (which her Legendary can help with) means 15 DMG and a taken out model. This isn’t momentous but removing a key piece, or depriving your opponent of INF can be crucial. Her access to KD means she can boost her chances to make these attacks hit.

TIP: Her Legendary (It’s Not Over) can allow Esters to boost her SPD and DMG (and her DEF if you are worried about retaliation). This can allow Esters to walk into melee and attack or charge a model 9” away.

TIP: Consider casting Tooled Up on Esters from Spigot1. This combine with her +1 DMG boost cranks her DMG to frightening levels.

TIP: Esters has Gluttonous Mass which means she can ignore counter attacks and pick DMG results over KD if she wants. However consider picking KD anyway, partly to boost her accuracy and partly to maintain her Gluttonous Mass shield for as long as possible. This will help her survive subsequent attacks.

TIP: Gluttonous Mass does NOT work against Parting Blows – be careful with these and usually try to KD a model engaging you or attack that model over risking a Parting Blow that could KD Esters.

TIP: Gluttonous Mass does NOT work against AOEs – these do not TARGET Esters and so do not trigger Gluttonous Mass.

TIP: Esters has easy access to Pushes – use these to move enemy models out of cover, push them into Ganging Up zones etc.

Esters the Support

The other half of Esters play style is her Character plays & using Empowered Voice to boost her team. Her Character plays ensure that if INF is put on her it is rarely wasted.

TIP: Try to always put 0,2,4, or 5 INF on Esters as she rarely needs to run to hit someone with her Blasted Earth play.

Blasted Earth is a 10” RNG AOE that does 2 DMG and puts Rough Ground down. Use this to slow enemy models down and rain death on them from a far. Fire Blast is a once per turn AOE that also does 2 DMG and sets the targets Burning. This combined with Blasted Earth can really slow models down (-4” MOV) so use it to control the enemy if you are not yet engaged.

TIP: Use the threat of Tooled Up Blasted Earth bombardment to bring the opponent closer to you for a melee whooping. This can force an enemy that would rather hang back to close the gap.

TIP: Consider casting Tooled Up from Spigot1 onto Esters as Tooled Up boosts the DMG of her RNG plays.

TIP: Empowered Voice DOES NOT boost the DMG of her RNG plays.

Ester’s Heroic is a nice 3” bubble of condition removal – very useful against teams that put out multiple effects such as Alchemists and Hunters.

TIP: Soothing Voice can be cast when Esters is Knocked Down. So rather than clear conditions, use this. If she is subsequently KD, she can still use Momentum to clear conditions like a normal player. This means Esters can tank multiple KD attacks as long as she has Momentum. By using Soothing Voice to clear KD it gives you the option to Heal instead of clearing KD with momentum.

Esters can use Empowered Voice for free and if she herself is not doing any heavy lifting, she should consider which friendly model will benefit. Examples include:

1.    Putting +1 DEF on Friday. Friday within 4” of Spigot goes to 5+ DEF and this takes her to 6+. With her 1 ARM, this can make her almost untouchable and a great place to kill the ball.

2.    Putting +1 DMG on Hooper. Combined with Esters KD, Hooper can then activate and go in with +2 DMG buff.

3.    Putting +1 DMG on Spigot1. If Esters or an ally can KD a model, Spigot1 has a good chance to wrap as he rolls 7 Dice with only 4 columns on his playbook. This can lead to wrap DMG which can be huge.

4.    +1 DMG to Stoker. Stoker can also buff his DMG by his Heroic (or by Esters setting targets on fire for him via Fire Blast) and can start hitting with a +2 DMG buff.

5.    +1 DMG to Pintpot – his ability to attack 5 times makes an efficient target for this buff

6.    +2” MOV to Friday. This increases her goal threat to 20”, 22” if she uses her Heroic. This can make for a Turn 1 goal if desired.

7.    +2” MOV to Mash. Mash is slow, this fixes this, allowing him to get close to the enemy goal and become a great Snap Shot turret.

There may well be more – Esters’s ability is very versatile and if she Legendaries, you can concentrate or spread out the buffs as required.

Suggested Beginner Team Selection:

Sing When You’re Winning: Esters (C), Quaff, Mash, Spigot1, Friday, Pintpot

TIP: There are many good models with Esters as she can boost any model to be even better. I have picked these as the easiest for beginners to play with – there are more esoteric line ups you can experiment with (see below).

2: Kick/Receive

Brewers are a little slow and this can limit some of their first turn game. However they have some tricks to get around this.

Possible Kicking Strategies

Tapper

The Scum Catapult

There is an excellent video on this here by Vincent Curkov ( @TheCurkov ): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WXoes28FiJo&t=229s

TIP: I strongly recommend you watch his videos and subscribe to his channel – his fast forwards through games allows you to quickly digest tactics in 20 minutes. His comments are insightful and I recommend the Strictly The Worst podcast if you would like to improve your competitive game. http://strictlytheworst.libsyn.com/

TIP: I will never call this the Pat Cat.

In short you kick off with Tapper, use Friday to pull Scum up, launch Scum into an enemy model, generate momentum, push an enemy closer to Tapper, activate Time’s Called and propel Tapper into the enemy for a whooping.

Kick Off Pressure

Friday can provide pretty good Kick Off Pressure. As long as she moves up such that she is still within 4” of Spigot, she is very hard for the opponent to deal with and with Shadow Like her threat range is 11”, which means she has about 16” (5” up field, 2” Shadow Like, 8” Charge, 1” melee). She can Momentously Tackle on a 1, and potentially score a goal.

Mark The Target

Kick off with Hooper, move up with Tapper and throw out a Marked Target on an activated model, charge Hooper into said model.

The Barrel Lob

Kick off with Stave, wait a few activations, then activate Stave, move up as required such that you lob a barrel with the centre behind the centre of the target model. If you hit, the target model is KD and pushed 4” towards your team. Pounce on this model with Tapper and Hooper. The results should be messy.

Esters

Kick Off Pressure

This works the same as above but with Empowered Voice Friday has an extremely long threat range.

How many Pints Can you Pot

Kick Off with PintPot. Empower his MOV. He now has 10” of threat. Coupled with his 5” Kick Off, that’s 15”. Tool Up from Spigot for added fun. Apply Bag of Quaffers as well. This should allow him to activate last, hit the enemy and using 3 beer tokens generate up to 4 Momentum and do a lot of DMG. Also consider Smashing Face if opponent has left models too close together.

TIP: Combine this with Esters bombardment below to potentially take a model off the board Turn 1.

Esters Bombardment

Kick off with Esters. Tool her up. Activate her and drop Blasted Earths on the opponent for 6 DMG to potentially multiple models. This doesn’t help with momentum but can disrupt enemy gameplan. Also consider using Fire Blast for Burning.

TIP: You can do this with Esters while doing another Kick Off (such as Friday Pressure) because Esters can run 6” and throw her Blasted Earths at targets 11.5” away (width of the AOE). With 17.5”, you are quite likely to hit something.

Possible Receiving Strategies

Tapper and Esters

First Turn Goal

Pass the ball around, ending it up on Friday, Pass N Move Friday 4”, then with Shadow Like and a sprint she has a grand total of 22” of goal threat (24” if spare momentum for I Shoot Better) from 4” dodge, 2” Shadow Like, 8” Sprint, 8” KICK. Esters can boost this to 24/26”.

Tapper

Aggressive Option

Use Momentous Teamwork action to dodge your team forward to strike e.g. Tapper up the field to hit things. This is accomplished by Pass N Move and Give N Go. Try to ensure the ball ends up on Friday. Make sure you Tool Up Tapper or Hooper first.

TIP: While fun this can lead to over extension and hurt your team in the long run. It is recommended only against teams that do not want to engage you in melee such as Fishermen or Engineers – do not try this against beatdown teams unless confident you are controlling the engagement!

Patient Approach

The Brewers work best when they stick together and they really benefit from momentum. This means that even when you have the ball, patiently repositioning can be worth more. Move your Brewers up in a blob, passing the ball around and wait for the enemy to come to you. Keep the ball on Friday near Spigot or on Scum on a wing to avoid them getting a goal from their Kick off model. Look to strike on Turn 2 rather than Turn 1 with all your Brewers together. With Friday having the ball, she can threaten a goal at any point – make sure she has at least 2 INF OR use Old Jakes to allocate it to her.

TIP: This approach works best into beatdown teams as you can set the terms of engagement and ensure all Brewers can support each other. Patience is rewarded less against teams that won’t scrum with you.

Esters

Patient Approach

Because Esters is slower than Tapper, and she benefits even more from moving as a block, it is suggested you play the patient approach as above. You can leap Esters forward, but she is not as durable as Tapper and will get dogpiled on. Instead use her RNG plays to attack the enemy forcing them to come to you while you hide the ball on Friday ready for her 24” goal if required. Turn 2 you should be able to control the engagement.

3: Tapper’s Lock In Crew Strategies

This team works around Tapper – his Commanding Aura, melee skills and durability combined with his extra INF generation. Brewers work best when working together and this crew wants to follow Tapper around. Tapper should pick a point on the pitch and declare it as the point about the scrum will happen on the Brewer’s terms.

Tapper will usually lead the turn, putting up Commanding Aura, dishing out extra INF and KD enemy targets and applying DMG. The key with Tapper is to create a danger zone around him that the enemy will not want to stay in, while locking them there by Tapper’s 2” melee and easy KD. Once Tapper has primed his area of the pitch, the rest of the Brewers can roll in and start taking out models.

Scum

Scum is going to spend a lot of the game hanging around Tapper. This is because not only does it increase Tapper’s maximum INF cap, it is also a perfect target for Old Jakes, and when attacking models within Commanding Aura extremely dangerous.

TIP: Scum’s DMG potential increases substantially with each extra Gang Up or KD on the target. If you can wait and set this up, Scum can often take models out at the end of the turn.

Scum’s other role will be to skulk to the wings killing the ball from aggressive football teams. Unpredictable movement can make it hard to tackle and 5+ DEF will cause trouble for even dedicated strikers. Pushing Scum out wide weakens Tapper but can be worth it to give Brewers the time to get the smackdown machine going.

TIP: Don’t forget Scum’s Character Play of Hamstring – crippling MOV can be essential in the game to stopping goals which might be better than simple DMG. Try this against models such as Shark to piss them off. Follow up with Hooper’s Smashed Shins and laugh maniacally.

Spigot

Spigot is incredible. He offers so much to the team that unfortunately he eclipses his Veteran version – who is a great player but just not as great as original Spigot. Spigot’s stats are unremarkable except that his KICK stat is really 4/7”. The other important fact is that Spigot has a 2/4 INF stat rather than the common Brewer 2/3 stat.

Spigot can do many things for a team. Firstly, he is a straight up murder machine even though he doesn’t look it. Able to take 4 INF and having a very short playbook, if Spigot can get the target KD (and he only needs 3 successes to do it himself) then he gets 7 Dice to attack with a 4 long playbook. This means he is likely to wrap and if under Commanding Aura, dishing out insane DMG. Spigot can straight up take models off the table – even better than Tapper or Hooper.

When not murdering players Spigot is providing extremely powerful buffs to his fellow Brewers in the shape of Tooled Up for +1 DMG and his Heroic Time’s Called. Time’s Called is fantastic in Brewers, who are otherwise quite slow. Unless you are fighting in a dense scrum in one area, Time’s Called can allow models to walk to engage the enemy – leaving more INF for attacks, or boost Friday’s goal run, or counter act enemy movement debuffs.

TIP: Scum and Hooper are great targets for Tooled Up as Scum can wrap very easily and Hooper can gain 7 TAC quite easily and benefits from his own +1 DMG. Tapper also would benefit given his higher INF stat, but usually you will want Tapper to go first.

TIP: Uniquely, Spigot actually benefits from casting Tooled Up on himself because if he is wrapping the Tooled Up DMG actually adds up to more DMG than a normal wrap. Since Spigot should be wrapping, consider self-casting Tooled Up if not able to reach Commanding Aura.

Spigot is not finished in his awesomeness. He also is one of the best ball strippers in the game with Ball’s Gone – a way to Tackle the ball and immediately dump it off to prevent counter tackles. Remembering Spigot’s 4/7” KICK, even though he would suffer a -1 Dice penalty because engaged, he is still very accurate. He can be an effective Snap Shot turret with his KICK stat and even act as a striker himself with an easy Tackle and reasonable MOV (which he can boost).

TIP: Ball’s Gone circumvents Close Control (because you are not Tackling the ball) – making it very effective into teams that are hard to Tackle from.

Further his +1/+1” Kick Aura stretches out 4” from him and makes his whole team much better at passing the ball around – even Hooper can reliably kick it about. This can be very useful on Turn 1 to generate momentum from passing the ball around.

And lastly, he grants +1 DEF to Friday. Spigot is an amazing player, one of the best in Guildball and needs to be protected because while he is on the pitch, Brewers are cranked up to 11. Don’t run him in the first wave – use Hooper and Tapper to tie up enemy models and take the hits with their Tough Hide.

Hooper

Hooper is a beatstick but has a little more going for him than just hitting people. Hooper’s secret weapon is True Grit – not only does it remove conditions (such as KD) it also grants +2 TAC. This takes his TAC to 7 on a 5 long playbook, allowing effective chances to wrap.

TIP: Always remember to activate True Grit at the start of Hooper’s activation assuming he is going to strike enemies - even if you have no conditions on Hooper – the +2 TAC is a fantastic buff.

TIP: True Grit lasts the rest of the turn – making Hooper dangerous on Counter Attacks.

TIP: Heroic Plays can be used even when KD (unlike Character Plays). This means Hooper should always be using True Grit to remove KD. If he gets KD again, he can clear it again, or just spend the momentum to heal.

Hooper gains a DMG buff against KD models – and should try to attack KD models or KD them himself. Not only does it improve his accuracy, it gives you the option of picking 3 DMG on 2 hits or 4 DMG on 5. However Hooper is not the best DMG dealer in Brewers because of his slow MOV and maximum 3 INF. Hooper is more a finisher – particularly enemy models in Tapper’s Commanding Aura still on the floor. These models are in Take Out City.

Hooper isn’t just his stick – he has two Character Plays that can also help Brewers swing the tide. The first is Tough Skin – a simple +1 ARM boost, this can help keep vulnerable players such as Spigot alive. However consider casting this on Friday. A 5+/2 model (because Friday is likely to be near Spigot) is basically impossible for most strikers to tackle. This can make an excellent Ball Killing model.

TIP: As well as making Friday hard to Tackle, it can benefit her after she has made her goal run and is out of Spigot’s aura – a 4+/2 model is hard to put in the dirt.

Hooper’s other play Smashed Shins can be very effective against those goal scoring teams. -4/-4” basically reduces all strikers to 1 dice kicks and while that can be circumvented by momentum, the -4” can stop goal runs, or at least force them to come closer to the Brewers to make the shot. Consider this play against super strikers such as Shark or Midas.

Friday

Friday is the Brewers most effective striker with a built in 18” goal threat that her Heroic takes to 20”. However she is more useful to Brewers than just a striker. She is good at tackling, and able to kick the ball into space after doing so to prevent enemy goal scoring teams going too fast. But her best talent is Dirty Knives. This Character play not only does DMG but also cripples DEF and Poisons the target. This can be very useful to apply a debuff that the opponent cannot remove. This allows Spigot and Hooper to maximise their long TACs vs playbooks.

TIP: Dirty Knives can be cast in melee and is NOT OPT. While DMG or momentous dodges can be nice, consider loading up Friday and multi casting this in the scrum to not only put Poison everywhere but also cripple the DEF of the enemy team, setting multiple models up for doom.

TIP: Try casting Dirty Knives at the end of the turn if no better target earlier in the turn – often players won’t be able to clear it (or risk going second) and you have just caused 3 DMG instead.

TIP: Friday is a good target for Old Jakes as he can either walk into the Command Aura to try to get her Dirty Knives off, or hard cast Dirty Knives on a critical enemy model (such as a captain) to prime it for removal.

TIP: Often forgotten, I Shoot Better grants Friday +1 DEF against Parting Blows. Use this when engaged base to base by a 2” melee model threatening a KD.

TIP: Don’t forget to ‘Get Over Here’ Scum not only to boost her TAC (as Scum can dodge 6” towards the model Friday is engaging) but also to get Scum into position for Tapper, or to increase its threat range if you need momentum.

TIP: Brewers can struggle with enemy goal keepers and Rush Goalie charges. Friday going to 10” KICK can help with this.

Stave

Ah Stave. Stave is a controversial figure. But let’s review his qualities. Firstly he has a high TAC – which means he can easily hit models in melee. His KD on 1 is also very good for ball stripping or weakening already activated models and setting them up for Hooper or Spigot. His signature move is Lob Barrel which is a ranged play AOE that allows him to KD multiple models and push them around. This is very powerful and should not be overlooked – ranged KD is very good in this game and this also has a Push. Use Stave to KD already activated models or provide threat extension for the rest of the team by separating enemy models and moving some closer.

TIP: Consider moving enemy models back as well as towards your models – sometimes pushing key beatstick models back (such as Ox) can waste their INF or put their Auras in the wrong place.

Stave however is extremely vulnerable. At 2+/0, he is going to be easy to hit and while Tough Hide will protect him for a while, he will gift the enemy a lot of momentum. Worse he can be used to throw lots of Character plays at your team. Keep Stave back as long as possible and bring him out towards the end of the turn. Using him for ganging up bonus and easy KD are useful to lock players – but he can be turned against you.

TIP: Consider Stave as an Old Jakes target for 1 or 2 INF. 2 if you want that Lob Barrel, 1 if you just need an easy KD.

4: Sing When You’re Winning Strategies

Esters team can still mix it up in melee but is more capable of scoring goals. Esters offers a lot more tactical flexibility than Tapper but at the cost of durability and 2” melee. This team wants to try and score as well as going for the beatdown route. Using Ester’s Empowered Voice on the team can really boost their function on the pitch.

Esters will be moving around the middle of the pitch, throwing out AOEs and boosting/clearing conditions of her team mates. She can be given nothing and still contribute, or given 5 and go on a rampage. Try putting Tooled Up on her first to really hurt the enemy.

Quaff

Quaff differs markedly from Scum. While Scum wants to hurt things and is very quick and able to do so, Quaff is less likely to see combat. However do not think he isn’t useful in melee. Quaff has easy access to momentous Pushes and he should use these to push models a surprising distance. When Quaff charges he rolls 7 dice, and the chance he will wrap is extremely high. If he does so, you can often push models 3 or 4”. Use this to push enemy models that have activated closer to your team to take them out. For example – perhaps a model is hovering within 9” of Quaff but too far for Spigot or Esters to reach with a walk. Charge in Quaff, push the model 3”-4” closer generating plenty of momentum. These team members can then activate and walk into melee – saving INF for attacks.

TIP: Quaff can use his ability to push wingers off the table. Charging in Quaff, you may be able to push an enemy model up to 4” – enough to push them off the table and score VP.

Quaff also comes with a free bonus – Bag of Quaffers. A simple +1 TAC sounds weak, but in a faction that already has longer TAC than playbooks it can be amazing. This also synergises nicely with Loved Creature – consider exposing Quaff just to trigger this as in Brewers +1 TAC is excellent.

TIP: Try putting Bag of Quaffers on Spigot as well as Empowered Voice +1 DMG to simulate Commanding Aura that Spigot can use anywhere.

Friday and Spigot

These two are running a similar role in this line-up as above but without Commanding Aura, Spigot is free to roam a bit more. Either use Spigot to Tool Up Pintpot (who benefits when making 5 attacks with his beer tokens) or Esters for her RNG or melee DMG. Or use Esters and Quaff to boost Spigot and go to town on models.

Friday can be even faster with Esters as well as gaining a nice DEF buff. Consider using a DEF 6 Friday as a place to store the ball (Spigot Aura + Ester buff) against football teams.

Mash

Mash is a striker – but an unconventional one. It is unlikely you will score many break away goals with Mash as his goal threat is only 14”. However instead consider Mash a great Snap Shot turret. Try to get Mash within 8” of the goal, activate him to put up Super Shot and then any Brewer that passes the ball to him allows Mash to make a Snap Shot owing to Volley Threat. This can allow the Brewers to score surprisingly quickly – potentially twice in one turn. Since the effort to move Mash is often not worth it, this creates a dilemma for your opponent.

TIP: Combine this with Spigot’s Ball’s Gone for sudden unexpected Brewer goals.

Mash also has Unpredictable movement and is a 2” melee model. This means that almost every other model in the game moving into melee with him will allow him to move away. It can be circumvented by base to basing with 2” melee models or dodges, but otherwise it can be very useful to avoid melee – for example giving Mash the ball can make it very difficult for many Guilds to get the ball back, or enemies trying to move Mash away from their goal can have real trouble.

Pintpot

Pintpot is a little engine of destruction but he has a few tricks to him beyond hitting people. His odd INF stat is balanced by his Six Pack rule – he can behave like a captain for two turns or you can eke him out over longer – I usually favour explosive 5 INF turns.

His playbook is designed for DMG but he can also move with it as one of the few Brewers with Dodges. As well as the normal pushes, he has the Brewer KD on 4, which with TAC 6 and some buffs or charging is not too hard for him to reach.

TIP: Remember he has Rowdy – he never gets the benefit from friends nor the penalty from enemies. This can be confusing but what it means is that when he is attacking he always uses his straight TAC 6 unless he has a bonus from a Character play such as Commanding Aura. It does NOT affect enemy models making attacks on him. Rowdy can be useful but in the main it’s probably more of a weakness.

His special ability – Six Pack – is where he shines. For a couple of turns he can churn out a phenomenal amount of attacks for free, making him very efficient. However he can also use those tokens to pay for Smashing Face or power up Come On Then! These will be situational but it is a very flexible ability. Experiment with Going Large on a turn to guage when it’s worth it.

TIP: Because of the number of attacks, Pintpot is a great target for Tooled Up.

His Heroic Play – Come on then! – is basically Gluttonous Mass – i.e it absorbs the first attack or character play that targets this model. This is a very powerful ability – being able to switch this on you can render counter attacks useless against him, or use it to defend him once he is stuck in.

TIP: As stated, use Come On Then before you start attacking if you don’t want to risk the counter attack.

TIP: Because of the shape of his playbook & Rowdy, he really wants to target KD models for an accuracy buff. Consider charging him in to hit that KD.

TIP: Pintpot loves Bag of Quaffers to help him since he can’t use Ganging Up bonuses.

TIP: Use Come On Then to protect Pintpot from Ranged plays.

TIP: Always look for opportunities to put out Smashing Face Bleeding condition – but remember it can hit your players!

5: Other Players

Above are some of the classic Brewer models but there are plenty more in the roster to consider slotting in to your line up depending on play style or opponent Guild.

Lucky

Lucky is player that can work for Masons or Brewers. His card looks odd but if it is a filled in playbook result it is momentous – it doesn’t have to be the right colour! He has pretty standard stats (perhaps higher than usual for Brewers) and while he doesn’t have a truncated playbook compared to his TAC, he has some great low down momentous results. Lucky works well with either captain – condition removal for Tapper or low DMG for Esters to easily boost. Raise the Stakes can be hard to use, and initially it is recommended only to use if Lucky would do nothing in a turn. It can be very powerful (enable Lucky to make a goal run for example) but it’s a double edged sword.

TIP: Try Kicking with Lucky and combining with Raise the Stakes & Stack the Deck to get momentum from reaching melee to power up Time’s Called and potentially start attacking enemy models.

TIP: Sleight of Hand is excellent and can be used on Lucky himself.

Veteran Spigot (Spigot2)

Poor Spigot2 – if Spigot1 wasn’t so useful to the team, Spigot2 would be selected more often. He is fast, very effective with the ball, combining Spigot1’s ball stripping with speed to strike home goals. Consider picking him if you want to run a much heavier goal scoring team – Esters can boost him even more.

TIP: A Team with Esters, Spigot2, Friday, Mash can be a surprisingly good goal team – but it’s hard to play and moves away from the Brewer comfort zone.

Stoker

Stoker works well with either captain but Esters can help him shine by setting targets Burning and giving him a MOV boost. Stoker has an excellent counter attack, and is hard to hit owing to his armour.

TIP: Consider ‘Going Loud’ with Stoker and dropping +1 DMG boosts on him from Spigot and Esters. Then at the start of his activation, activate Human Ball of Fire, move into base to base with an enemy and attack for a +3 DMG boost. On models already Ganged Up on, this can cause insane DMG.

6: Guild Weaknesses and Other Guilds

The Brewer’s Guild has one primary weakness – speed. Not just MOV but in tempo – the guild usually needs to wind up to deploy its full effectiveness. When given the time to do so, Brewers can be frightening. However opponent’s will try to disrupt this wind up and also hit the MOV weakness.

It is usually essential that the Brewers stay together – Don’t Split The Party! This doesn’t mean you can’t and sometimes you will have to – some opponent’s will ‘run the wing’ and you don’t have the raw MOV to reengage them if they do this. So sometimes you will need to position models such as Friday, Scum, Quaff, Hooper on the wings to try to force players back to the centre.

The Brewers are also pretty vulnerable to character plays. Their low DEF meaning opponent’s may be able to control them more than other guilds. Blind is a particular nightmare for Brewers. If an opponent has a Blind bot, TAKE IT OUT ASAP.

Brewers also have momentum issues – they want to spend it as fast as they generate it and if going for Take Outs, may not generate DMG momentum. This can make it harder for Brewers than for other Guilds to control the ‘momentum race’ for first turn activation. Try to force the opponent to ‘waste’ momentum on clearing KD condition and healing. Pepper them with Dirty Knives Poison to increase this.

Brewers vs Condition Teams

Teams such as Hunters and Alchemists will try to control Brewer MOV, and have multiple tools to do this effectively. Things to try in these sorts of matchups:

1.    Lucky for condition removal and surprising speed from Raise the Stakes

2.    Stave (to try to push enemy models to you – you’re getting hit by arrows anyway)

3.    Pushing forward as best possible and waiting for Turn 2 and using that momentum to activate Time’s Called.

4.    Esters to boost MOV on 3 models via Legendary

5.    Esters to fire back at opponent’s weakest models forcing them to rethink their strategy

6.    Hooper for True Grit

7.    Stoker for Magical Brew and ranged DMG

8.    Scum Catapult to get the momentum train going to clear conditions

Tapper is probably not recommended into these teams unless you can clear control on him by some means. While Stacking Esters with 5 INF is hard to control, Tapper can be shutdown.

Brewers vs Scoring Teams

Brewers are slow, scoring teams are FAST. This is bad. The Brewer player needs to gain control of tempo fast (tempo = who’s in charge of the game). Some ways to do this – KILL THE BALL on Friday/Mash/Scum. This can mean running it into a corner (in front of your goal line – you need Momentum!), putting it on a high DEF model, etc. Once the ball is out of play, the scoring team has to work harder to get it back into play – meanwhile cripple and take out their strikers. Maintain tempo, and score to close out the game. With Knee Slider gone, scoring goals is now a risk – Brewers should be able to capitalise on this to punish foolish strikers.

TIP: As mentioned above, Brewers have Character Plays that can screw up Strikers – consider these over raw DMG.

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