A Review of the Hunter (2008)
I'd just like to start this by echoeing many of the sentiments of others concerning the hunter; that he's overpriced and takes up valuable ogre hero slots. Like the scrappy, he's a cross between a combat unit and a shooter, but he can't move and fire and his weapon isn't actually all that great.
However, he has an amazing model (one of the best in the ogre range), good assassination ability with his cats and is an ogre character capable of getting over US5 without the aid of magic items. Ok, first things first, take him with longstrider and two 'tusks. Always. Otherwise he goes from being moderately useless to absolutely useless. Longstrider may be replaced by a greyback pelt if you so wish, but I always take at least one unit of yhetees so it's out of the question for me.
I'm going to throw something controversial out there: ignore the bow. If you start to think that it's his best item, you'll start to play him as a static character, and then you're not using him right. It is useful yes, but I tend to have it as a backup sort of thing: I do whatever I was planning to do with the hunter, and if a good shot comes up (like through knights' flanks) I take it. However, his main purpose is as a scout and an assassin. He serves a similar purpose to the slavegiant as a mobile flanker, but also has the extended charge range of the cats that he can rely on. Unfortunately, as soon as the cats are gone, so is US5. So don't be careless at sending out the cats; only do it if you're 100% sure that their kill will significantly hamper the enemy's battle plan. If it's just a random impulse, don't do it. Do everything you can to preserve the cats, as they give him that magical US5.
I advocate longstrider because it makes him very, very speedy indeed. Try to use it to keep him out of sight from enemy shooting. One good bow volley and a cat goes down. Cat goes down, hunter becomes useless. Got it yet? Without the cats, he becomes a glorified bruiser. Think of him less as a crossbow toting badass and more like a patented sabertusk deliver system. They can perform vital assassinations, they give him US5, they're the only real thing that separates him from being an overpriced, unstubborn, S4 maneater.
So I'll sum this all up. Think of him in a similar manner to the slavegiant: as a mobile flanker. If he loses the cats, he becomes useless. Use the bow only if an excellent situation (such cavalry flanks or weakened monsters) arises, and otherwise forget that it exists: using it slows him down too much. Overall, I think the hunter is a waste of points. However, if you're in love with the model and the concept, he still has his uses. Just use him carefully.
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