Noh Way!

Makara S 120606#1, 6/6/12, 11:25 AM, 8C, 7360x11703 (777+0), 150%, Pat Ward, 1/20 s, R38.5, G13.0, B27.0

With Human Sphere N3 officially released, the Data-Sphere team has a lot to cover!

As the resident JSA fanatic, I’m here to bring you my own take and analysis of the new unit. They’re nimble, durable, and flexible! Did I mention they’re specialists?

In classical Noh theatre, the Shikami mask is described as a fierce scowling face, showing extreme agitation, used for demonic spirits and expressing masculine rage.

Here’s my thoughts on the Shikami.

Let’s take a look piece by piece first:

  • HI : Yes, these new troops are even more heavy infantry for the JSA. This means they’re hackable, but that’s not as much of a weakness as you might expect. I’ll explain why later.
  • Regular : Not impetuous, which means cover is possible, increasing survival chances. Regular status also prevents them from being a liability to order efficiency.
  • MOV 4-4 : Standard heavy infantry speed, but this is not from where they derive their nimbleness. Still, good to see they’re not overly slow (such as YanHuo).
  • CC 23 : CC stats on par with the Ninja or Haramaki. Nothing too spectacular in JSA, but still nice to have.
  • BS 12 : Relatively low BS for a HI unit with the price tag carried by these guys, but not completely helpless.
  • PH 14 : Higher than normal PH makes our melee hurt more. It also helps with dodging that pesky missile launcher.
  • WIP 13 : Standard JSA WIP, nothing really to note here.
  • ARM 3 : Standard sub-par JSA armor values.
  • BTS 3 : Standard JSA HI BTS values.
  • W 2 : Nothing to see here with regards to HI.
  • S 2 : Your average trooper size.
  • AVA 1 (2) : That’s AVA 2 for JSA and 1 for Yu Jing.

So, as far as the stat line goes, we see what we’d expect for JSA HI, except the low AVA.
But here’s where things get interesting…

  • ODD: Optical Disruptor : Yes, you read that right. JSA now has a HI with ODD. This skyrockets the durability of the Shikami. You can’t hurt what you can’t hit!
  • Climbing Plus & Super-Jump : This is where the mobility comes from. There won’t be many places these guys can’t reach. Try out the combo of Super-Jumping onto the side of a wall and sticking there due to Climbing Plus! Wall running and parkour has come to the JSA.
  • Dual Wield : All options come with DA and AP CCWs. Makes that CC23 much scarier!
  • Kinematika L2 : Dodge/engage/guts with 4 inches! Not overly exciting, but something that can definitely be exploited for advantage. Not many people expect that heavily armored and difficult to hit target to rush towards them on a dodge.
  • Martial Arts L3 : I’m sorry, did I say these guys were CC23? I meant 26. And your opponent receives -3. My bad. Alternatively, you can hit something VERY hard.
  • Specialist Operative : To top all this off, this new troop is a specialist. Button pushing has never been so fun.

The skills and equipment of this model really bring her┬árole to life! But we’re not done yet!
The profiles are as follows:

  • Contender, Nimbus Grenades
    Assault Pistol, DA CCW, AP CCW, Knife
    0 SWC 45 points
  • Combi Rifle
    Pistol, DA CCW, AP CCW, Knife
    0 SWC 47 points
  • (Fireteam: Duo)
    Contender, Nimbus Grenades
    Assault Pistol, DA CCW, AP CCW, Knife
    0.5 SWC 46 points

That’s right! The Shikami has a Fireteam: Duo option! The ballistic skill weapons aren’t too spectacular at longer ranges, though.

  • Contenders are great for AROs and the occasional long range pot shot (if you face no repercussion thanks to ODD, cover, and range).
  • Combi Rifles are standard bread and butter, but are always a little more worrisome when equipped on an ODD model!
  • Nimbus Grenades are great if you need to eek out a little extra MODs in your favor or when facing down a larger Fireteam.
  • Assault Pistols are fantastic in the short range as a stopgap on your way into Close Combat or for mowing down a few targets simultaneously.
  • The regular pistol is largely irrelevant on the Combi Rifle profile.

Of course, the Melee weapons aren’t exactly diverse. DA+AP is a great combination. The Knife can be useful if you’re wanting to take down several models who have their back’s turned without fearing reprisal.


Leaked photos of the concept art for the Shikami! (Joking, of course)

So, what do you think of these new troops? Excited to play with them? Scared to see them across the table? Confident in your ability to remove them as threats? Not overly enthusiastic about them?

Bryant "Claudius Sol"

Aerospace Engineer, Programmer, Gundam enthusiast

6 Responses

  1. wisetiger7 says:

    You never explained why being hackable wasn’t as much of a weakness as we might expect…

  2. Irishrover13 says:

    Looks like an excellent unit. My wolves are sure to find them crunchy on the outside and chewy on the inside

  3. DankEldar says:

    I swear to god these guys are THE reason for me to start JSA, right after the Oniwaban! I love the rules and the flavour, can’t wait to see some models!

  4. zagdag says:

    Nice write up. Given JSAs cheap link options these guys are a really interesting addition and fit well with the active turn focus of much of JSA. Little rules note: Kinamatiks doesn’t effect guts movement, but it is still a great skill on these guys.

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