The Dogmastists box is a great start to any Vatican force, perfect for those that like spending will points, aggressive martyrs, and denying the magic your opponent casts. In this article we look at how to use your Dogmastists to bring the wrath of the Vatican down on the sinners of Venice.
To start with we’re going to make a change to the lineup of the box, we’re going to replace one of the Martyrs with one of the characters from the Vatican Starter Gang, the mighty Executioner! This brings the gang to 74 Ducats, enough room for a Flashbang to make the gang up to 75 Ducats, perfect for a quick game.
You can find all of the stats for these characters as well as our gang builder on carnevalegame.com
Our leader in this gang is the magic punishing Exorcist, with his Helm of Penitence he’s able to dispel magic as if he were a Mage (3) with Expert Sorcerer (3), he’s tied with the Black Lamp for his ability to nullify the skills of mages, but has the added benefit of being able to ignore the majority of protection of any undead or mage he touches. His command ability is no joke either, making all friendly characters within 6″ gain Fear (0), great for those turns you want to spend your characters will points on big attacks. The Exorcist is a tough as nails leader, with 5 Protection, Universal Shielding (3), as well as Vampiric Attack (1) he’s more than capable of leading from the front, especially when his Divine Touch is able to cause Stun.
Our next character is the Cross-bearing Deacon, sporting 3 command points and a whopping 10 will points. His command ability is great when facing a gang that has a lot of Fear causing characters, making him a great support character against Rashaar. His Holy Relic lets other characters within 6″ use his Will Points as if they were their own. Even better, if you aren’t facing characters with Fear, you can use his command points to replenish his will points as well as that of others. He’s no slouch in combat either, with his Holy Icon having a 2″ range with an extra damage at the cost of being two handed and treating the opponents Dexterity as being 1 higher, so you’ll want to keep him at maximum range and support the rest of the gang while making the most out of his command points.
The Executioner is the heavy hitter of the gang, with 5 attack and dealing an additional damage when he deals damage, you’ll want to make sure he’s bringing his axe upon the enemies of the Vatican as often as possible. While he may not have the best of protection values he does have Brawler (1), keeping him at 5 attack even when outnumbered. To get the most out of his attacks stun the target with your Exorcist, use your Altar Boy’s command ability for First Strike (2), put 2 will points into the attack, then charge. With 9 attack, your target stunned, and the Executioner’s Axe’s +1 to damage, you can get a whopping 10 damage with one attack. Even better if you crit, as his Beheading will trigger, dealing an extra 2 damage on top of the 1 for a critical, bringing the total damage up to a potential of 13 for his first attack!
Your Martyr is a capable melee combatant, if a little fragile. With only 3 dexterity and 3 protection he can’t take a hit like some of the other characters in this gang and really suffers when outnumbered. His strength lies in his Berserk and First Strike (1) special rule. A berserking, charging Martyr is something scary and can tear into unprepared opponents. His Limited Movement and Mindless are definite drawbacks and will limit what you want to do with him, but he does have a modest amount of his own will points to be able to mitigate some of his shortcomings. You’ll want to get your Martyr into the fray after a more defensive character has engaged the opponent. To get the best out of him he’ll need some support, the Altar Boy’s command ability will up his First Strike to 3, while getting Fear (0) from the Exorcist will definitely help get him to a comfortable 5 attack on the charge (6 if Berserk) with potential re-rolls from fear.
An Altar Boy is a brilliant support character with just enough Movement and Dexterity to get them where they need to be. With Concealment (2) and Slippery (3) they’re able to make the most out of hiding spots and reliably get away from anyone without Engage. Their command ability gives all characters within 6″ First Strike (2), so you should be trying to charge as much as you can with this gang. Keep your Altar Boy close to those that can protect him and away from those that may see him as an easy kill, his powerful command ability can turn the tide of a game so he’ll likely be a target from round 1 with his low Protection and Mind.
All in all, this gang really wants to play to each others strengths and work together. The Vatican is all about synergy and this gang has it in spades, so make sure to protect your key characters, like the Cross-bearing Deacon and the Altar Boy. Getting the charge is also a good way of playing to this gangs strengths, with a whole lot of first strike you’ll be missing out if you’re the one getting charged. Keep away from canals and roofs, the Vatican have a great ground game but make for poor swimmers or climbers. Making sure your more aggressive characters like the Executioner and Exorcist are leading the charge with as much support as you can muster will take a couple of enemy characters out early and set you on the way to victory.