Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Eldar Unit Thoughts

This is the first post for the blog, and all that jazz. Without further ado, I'll launch into reflections on some of the Eldar units I've used thus far, and the ones I intend to use. The Eldar are my current project, as I am growing rather tired of Loyalist Space Marines.

Avatar of Khaine
I'll be using him in two of the three builds I'm planning. Thus far, I'm quite happy with him.

WS10, S6, T6, four wounds, 3+/4+ saves. WS10 is an amazing defensive tool, as anyone with WS4 hits him on 5+. The Avatar wounds most melee opponents on a 2+, which is also good. Additionally, the saves don't get much better. Granting everyone within 12" access to Fearless is not a problem either. However, I'm just waiting for 'fearless' to backfire in assault and cost me some wounds. Icing on the cake is the fact he's effectively carrying a Meltagun at BS5

About all I can say is that he's bloody slow. A 6" move and 6" assault mean he's not going anywhere fast. He's footslogging and going to be hiding behind a unit and waiting to be counterassault. It's not hard for the enemy to avoid him.

At 155 points, he's a hell of a unit.

There's one in all of my builds. In two builds, he's leading a Seer Council. In the last, he's on foot.

Psychic support, no more and no less. Coming from Marines and Daemons, this is a new aspect of the game. There's a learning curve to using the psychic powers at the right place and right time.

Default buildout includes Runes of Warding, Doom, and Fortune. Since most of my builds include BS4 units (other than Falcons and Wave Serpents) I'm not seeing as much of a point in Guide, and these are the most reliably useful powers I can think of so far.

Not so hot in melee. I5, and all of two attacks because I'm running her with a Witchblade and Shuriken Pistol. It hides in a durable unit, avoids conflict unless it wants to be there, and if it's in there it's under the effect of Fortune and the enemy is Doomed. Additionally, base toughness 3 means S6+ results in Instant Death.

It's awesome having HQs that aren't 200 points and the psychic powers make a huge difference.

Also known as the Seer Council. It's an expensive unit, to be sure. Right now it's 6 Warlocks; 4 Destructors, an Enhance, and a schmuck-lock that looks around and wonders why his bike is covered with dried blood.

Mobile, and amazingly destructive. Four heavy flamers into a Doomed infantry unit, followed up by a flurry of attacks that usually hit on 3's and wound on 2's usually results in a dead infantry unit. Watching a depleted council of 2 destructors, Enhance-Lock and schmuck-lock take out a 29-strong Ork Mob is conversion for me.

Seer Council +Seer = 400-500 points. Not a lot of wounds for the points invested. Fortune helps, but these guys need some careful handling. This unit's got a learning curve, and it's going to involve probably getting them shot up. Additionally, they're vulnerable to counter-assault.

Costly, but incredibly destructive. At least they can absorb some abuse with Fortune on. I've experimented with keeping them in reserve if I don't go first and don't have a good place to hide them, and i'm reasonably satisfied with how that worked out.

Harlequins feature in my Elfzilla build, as I feel they're unsuited for a mechanized build. Delivering assault troops via closed-top vehicles is a dicey proposition as I must run the transport up to the intended target, ride out the gunfire, then remain still while the vehicle kicks out troops and they try to get assault range on the target. If the Harlies fail? T3, 5+ save means they're not living to complain about it.

High volume of rending attacks on a reasonably fast assault unit. 2 base, +1 for pistol/CCW, +1 for charging, and 8-9 harlequins are cranking out 32-36 WS5, S4, I7 rending attacks on the charge. Fusion pistols grant them at least some measure of tank-hunting. On foot, the Shadowseer is essential. If the enemy can't see them, they can't kill them. Shadowseer makes the enemy roll 2(2d6) for spotting distance, so on average the enemy can only shoot them from 14" away, which is within assault distance on a good Fleet roll.

Harlequins are a glass hammer. They simply cannot take punishment, and MUST either destroy or cripple their target on the charge. If they fail to do so, and take a number of attacks in return they are at a risk of folding. Even if there's an Avatar nearby, No Retreat! wounds on a 5+ save aren't attractive.

Harlequins are definitely glass hammers. However, I think they're still about the nastiest assault unit in the codex.

Fire Dragons
Fire Dragons really seem to want to be run in one way: in a transport. They fly up, they crank out a lot of melta shots, kill something, and then T3 under a 4+ armor save gets them dead. I don't see much point for an Exarch, as I can get another meltagun for that price.

They kill large targets. Unless I'm facing pure infantry, they'll have a target and 5-6 meltaguns usually result in the death of that target. Meltabombs are nice insurance, but I doubt they'll be used much.

I expect them to bag all of a single target. They'll require a Falcon or Wave Serpent to be effective, which adds another 130ish to their price tag. It exposes the transport to close-range fire, but the 12" move should keep it reasonably safe against assault. I suspect Fire Dragons will die after they bag the target, but at 90 points for 5 guys, I think it's a good price to pay to destroy target, as Land Raiders, Terminators, Obliterators, and just about any other tank costs more.

They're the only source of melta outside of fusion pistols in Harlequins.


Bocman said...

Regarding the fire dragons...

A big thing I try to keep in mind whenever I transport units is how to disembark them. I try to provide some sort of reasonable cover for them using the transport itself(especially given T3 is defeated quite by big rocks). If you managed to do that, it could greatly increase the unit's longevity and mobility.

Drive to Enemy A, pop out 5 shots in his ass, blow him up. 2 guys die to fire that their saves/cover saves didn't make (random number woo). 3 more hop in, move 18 inches, lather rinse repeat. Seems at least like a feasible way of doing it and keeping the unit at least partially intact and effective.

Raptor1313 said...

I don't expect anyone to let the Fire Dragons live past one volley. If they do, I consider it a bonus, a gift, and five more melta shots to the arse...

But as we've seen, most people watch them crank out 5 melta shots, and then do their level best to smash 'em.