However I have been underwhelmed by the Brutes on-table effectiveness and are considering alternatives.
First, let's have a look at the stats for Brutes:
- Me 4+, De 4+, Move 6", Attacks 18, Nerve 13/16
- Regen 5+
- Crushing Strength 2
- Frontage 120mm
Rallying helps. In reality if you keep them in the middle of your line they should be 15/18 - but that puts a tactical limitation on their role. Overall they suddenly become support rather than frontline troops and at 185 points that seems expensive.
So what are the alternatives?
Well the first is a Horde of Warriors:
- Me 5+, De 4+, Move 6", Attacks 25, Nerve 19/21
- Frontage 200mm
- +30 Points
The second are the Horde of Spear Warriors:
- Me 5+, De 4+, Move 6", Attacks 30, Nerve 19/21
- Frontage 200mm
With Rallying the Warriors (both options are likely Nerve 21/23) are very respectable defensively and can be screened by Slaves (same height). The difference in frontage - 120mm vs. 200mm - is interesting as there are benefits to both depending on the situation. In the role of a defensive unit the wider frontage can be an asset in occupying space but can disadvantage you in the case of multiple charges. With the Warriors you can spend the 30 points on the Brew of Strength increasing their offensive capacity but I think their Me 5+ makes it a bit inefficient. You can also give them Helm of Confidence (Reroll a Rout) or Chant of Hate (Vicious) but I am unconvinced in terms of utility.
Overall I am erring towards the Spear Warriors as a potentially more flexible tactical option. If needed it can be Bane Chanted should the situation present itself. I am going to be trying all three of the options out in coming weeks.
What are other people's thoughts?