Where do we begin with Kate Kane? She’s one tough cookie with daddy issues and she’s rocking the mantle of her rich emo cousin Bruce. If you’re a comic book fan you’ve seen that she’s been integral in the latest detective comics run featuring the current bat-family. Well let’s dive in and see what her 2nd edition counterpart has to offer.
Kate is a Leader or Sidekick for Brave and the Bold, and if you noticed there was some slight updates made for teams that includes Batwoman in Bat-Family. She’s coming in at 111 rep and no cost to your funding. Her stat-line is solid, not great for her cost, but solid nonetheless. Stat-line wise she’s exactly the same as she was in 1st edition with an additional willpower.
Batwoman has her same old weapon profiles with the R. Controlled Batarangs and the Shock Gloves. The real changes come in the form of her special rules and the fact that she is now a Leader/Sidekick hybrid instead of just a Sidekick.
Let’s see what she’s gained and lost in the updated model release.
Losing Technique is rough. It is a strong ability that can completely render a model useless if it is affected by the paralyze effect; however, Kate gains a lot as you can see above. Air Combat is easily the most exciting of the bunch, but Interrogation is interesting as well. What’s nice about Air Combat is it is very easy to ensure combat bonuses on the turns that Kate’s Batclaw is active; zipping into combat with a Batclaw/Grapple Gun is often something you’ll have seen by various Batman models, Robins, equipped High security Henchmans and Borgons (not to mention the various other models and combinations). My point is that this is something familiar, but Batwoman is gaining a huge advantage by entering combat with her Batclaw since she’ll be +1 to hit and +1 to damage rolls. The great part is she effectively gains Martial Expert. The reason this is important is that Kate’s gloves have CRT: Stunned which gives Batwoman a lesser Technique in that it prevents the affected model from spending counters of any kind (it does not award -2 to defense though). There is a direct trade-off, yes Batwoman no longer has the reliability of technique; however, it is now supplemented that her crit effect on her gloves are much more likely to activate. Now Air Combat can also be activated by leaping down, and since you can only use her Batclaw every other round, she can still benefit from Air Combat by essentially jumping down and putting her hands on another model. This is why I believe that Knight decided to also give her the Batcape rule, preventing her from taking fall damage by trying to active Air Combat through a leap down movement (if the distance down is significant). Interrogation is another new one for her; the rule is a little wordy, but as far as I understand it is that if she is able to successfully grab or push an enemy model — she or another friendly model may move up to 4″ or reallocate 2 action counters. I see this being more beneficial for friendly models since Batwoman can try and move a friendly model out of harms way, or move them into an objective by beating someone up despite the location of her and said friendly model. For example, Kate successfully pushes High Security Henchman off of a roof, and on the other side of the board, Arkham guard moves 4″ into the player’s medical supplies effectively scoring it at the end of the round. It could also be used to pull a model or herself away from a lamppost, out of range of a gun etc… I really think this is a great rule, it’s just going to require some finesse and positioning. I could also see this being a way of moving her or a friendly’s counters around to either help with attacking, or to save someone by dumping more counters into defense, moving it into movement for dodging, moving unused counters into special to recover more effectively at the end of the round etc… Military Teamwork is another solid rule, but because Kate is going to be zipping around beating models up, it’s really only going to come into play when she makes her way into a situation where she’s saving another model or attempting to outnumber an enemy model.
Overall I think that Batwoman is solid, her main drawback is her cost, she’s expensive, but if you compare her to someone like AA Batman I think she’s much better and cheaper. I would say you probably won’t be running her with any of the really expensive Batman models or other Brave and Bold costly pieces. I think she does well in Bat-Family since she can Arrest and will be dealing stun damage anyway, so paired with someone like Damian who will gain the Boy Wonder trait, Damian could knock someone out and she could easily remove that model, especially with Criminology preventing Runaway, but she really pairs well with any high stun list which is the majority of the Brave and Bold/Bat-Family options anyway. She’s going to want to run around and pick people off since she’ll be pretty quick with her Batclaw. She’ll definitely want to zip into combat with enemy models camping objectives especially if she has back up to make use of Military Teamwork, but that will be more of a mid to late game scenario. Try to take advantage of height with her. Simply standing on a van and dropping down to punch someone can activate Air Combat, or dropping down from a building if you’re trying to keep her safe. She’s pretty survivable at Defense 4 and Endurance 7, and the icing on top is her Bat-Armor MK1. Just be careful when throwing her into a mob, since she does not have Martial Artist and guns can tear her apart if she’s not making use of Stealth.
Other things to note would be that Night Vision pairs well with the fact that her Batarangs are R. Controlled, making it so you can throw them from around a corner or weave them through obstacles. Searcher is always nice to have, in fact anything that removes strategy points or removes an enemy strategy is huge. I would also go as far to say that models that have an impact on the pre-game are always an option to consider and are generally useful for that reason alone. In addition to all that I just mentioned, Kate also has access to her Officer Training equipment which gives her the Follow Me! rule, something worth taking if you have the extra rep and funding.
Overall I think the new Batwoman is pretty awesome. What do you all think? Is she good? Bad? Will there be a Birds of Prey team coming? Does the carpet match the drapes? You tell me!