Aerial units can take over the Battleground, but understanding the best way to implement their ability can make them even more effective. There are some counter-attacks to Aerial units, and learning to identify threats can help you preserve your flyers.
AERIAL UNIT BASICS:
INSTRUCTIONAL VIDEO PORTION ON AERIAL UNITS: 9:25-10:11
RULEBOOK SCREENSHOTS FOR AERIAL
Flying units that are flying are considered “Aerial”
In order to attack/use spells or abilities against non-Aerial units, units that are Aerial must land, but they can attack/use spells and abilities against other Aerial units and remain Aerial.
Once flying units have landed to attack/use spells or abilities against a non-Aerial unit, their activation ends and they cannot become Aerial until the next round.
When a flying unit moves, it automatically becomes Aerial (it does not require a movement point to become Aerial or land)
Flying units must land to capture a Resource Center.
Flying units that are Aerial are marked with the Aerial token. When they are landed, the token is removed.
Flying units provide a lot of strategic advantages, but perhaps none is more helpful than their movement advantages…Aerial units can move over water spaces and also over other units without having to stop their movement, or without having to end their activation (they cannot end their activation on a space that another unit is currently occupying, however, and diagonal movement restrictions still apply).. This extra level of flexibility makes hard to reach enemy units much more reachable. Aerial units also tend to have above average movement, making them able to spread the Battleground and hunt down Captains and back-line units near the opposing basecamp.
Another great benefit of Aerial units is the aversion to spells. They cannot be targeted by spells while Aerial (unless the casting unit is also Aerial!) and have an automatic Evade 3 against ranged attacks, meaning that opponents that use ranged heavy attacks, like Parada or Moonshadow, will have that constant risk of missing on their mind.
(EVADE: Your opponent must roll a 6 sided die when targeting this unit with any non-melee attack. If the roll is less than or equal to the Evade number, the attack or spell has no effect. Aerial units have an automatic Evade 3 against ranged attacks.)
One (minor) drawback is that Flying units can tend to be worth a touch more Victory Points than their earthbound allies. The Battleground has 2 levels, and making sure that your Warband includes at least a couple of flying units OR strong defenses against Aerial units helps ensure you don’t neglect that second level.
*While there are a lot of spells and Ranged abilities that Aerial units ignore or can evade, there are some that can in fact target them, including a couple that specifically target Aerial units! Be sure that you are on the lookout for them when deploying Warbands with a lot of flyers, as to not take surprise damage. Parada, which has the lowest number of flying units, in particular has a couple of ground units that can take down Aerial units.
Three in particular to be aware of are Precision, Tornado, and Skypierce.
PRECISION: Damage from this unit’s ranged attack ignore the “evade” ability, including for aerial units.
This allows for the ELF SHARPSHOOTER to launch that devastating 3 damage 3 range attack against Aerial units with no fear of it not causing major damage to it’s target.
The single most dangerous spell to Aerial units in the game currently, Tornado, simply put, obliterates not just one Aerial unit, but all you control. If you see the Eloko Grand Druid hit the board, LAND your units immediatley if possible.
SKYPIERCE: 1 damage to an enemy aerial unit with a range of 3 spaces.
While not nearly as powerful as Precision, and not even close to Tornado, Skypierce is specifically designed to damage Aerial units. It’s cheap and has good range, making it dangerous for low-health Aerial units and capable of weakening Aerial units throughout the battle.
Flying units have way to much upside to ignore! What are your top flyers? Drop a reply!