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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2011 9:53 am 
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Has anyone tried this? I know the RBT doesn't get much love, mainly because it is a little pricey, but I'm wondering if using 3+ of them might actually be worth it.

Consider that a RBT firing at long range against a T3 5+ AS troop (arguably the most common type of core troop) block on average rolls kills 2. Nine archers kill 0.75. In order to kill 2 of the said troop type, there must be 24 archers firing at the target.

Now, I'm not trying to start the arguments for and against RBT's. The goal of this thread is to discuss whether or not Spamming RBT's can be a viable form of crowd control and if anyone who has done it has had success, or perhaps would like to share a horror story.

The potential looks promising, but I've no experience running any.


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2011 10:23 am 
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I have attempted various lists using 3 RBTs, tbh at the moment I tend to find the happy place (for 2400-2500) is to take 2 RBTs and 2x14 archers, it gives you enough stuff that can hack away at range, without feeling like you are dedicating a disproportional amount of points on shooting. I tend to find using all that to shoot one block is handy, but once in a while its useful to peg HPAs or something which is where the boltys are particularly handy.

But in answer to the original question, I have built 2 lists around shooting and magic, 1 took 3 mages, 3 boltys and ~30 archers one L1 mage with +1 PD every turn and beasts, 1 L4 with a scroll and shadow (personally I think the withering is what you really want above all others) and 1 L2 with seerstaff to get arrow attraction IIRC, also had the BOS. That way you could fairly reliably get more PD than your opponenet got DD allowing for some flexability, I generally got to cast either arrow attraction or withering every turn. Worked fairly well, I shot a dwarf player to pieces (took all his artillery on my second turn from a combination of insane good luck on rolls with the archers and a DP charge onto his cannon). With that gone he had to advance through the fire and by the time he reached my lines his dwarfs were in tatters and easy to smash with mindrazored spears (although what isnt :p), the WL unit and the SMs. That list also did a round of shooting with archers wounding minotaurs on a 2 which I found very funny.

Second list was to try and get upto the max number of shots in a comped list (so 80), 10 reavers, 5 SW (those will be taken out in future attempts), 2 mages again shadow (L4 silver wand) and high (L2 seerstaff), Chicken prince with spirit leech, 3 boltys, ~30 archers and 25 seaguard in 5*5 few other odds and sods. Only tested it against skaven so far (with an agreed no storm banner until I fix it a little, because god damn.... storm banner), and frankly it isnt ready, but it is capable of taking a hefty toll.

In short, it is POSSIBLE to make a high elf list with reasonable shooting in general, but frankly it really isn't what we are best at and for me its a pet project to see if I can get there with it more than anything else. Also, I have been able to cause my skaven friend to abandon ship from a unit of clanrats after 1 round of shooting with one of those lists, they are perfectly capable of removing 20+ T3 AS5+ models from the game in a turn. I would suggest 2 might be a good number to keep, but it is a fun distraction to experiment with (I would try 4 in my shooting lists, but I dont own a fourth :p)


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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2011 12:09 pm 
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I think krysith has had some joy with multiple RBT's also.

Under hard comp they tend to be limited to 2 as for some armies versing lots of RBT is a no-fun game. I suspect lots of RBT increase the importance of match-up, being great against some enemies and poor against others.

It's interesting how RBT were regarded pretty poorly a few months ago but now feature in perhaps the majority of lists.

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PostPosted: Wed Apr 27, 2011 12:45 pm 
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last edition i ran a tournament list with 4 of them and did very well, i also used 20 archers and lots of magic.

in this edition i really dont think that 3+ bolt throwers are worth it, i would rather buy 20 SW,PG or white lions instead, and they will probably kill more

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PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2011 2:51 am 
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I love RBTs. They're GWs gift to High Elves. For me they are more effective than 10 Archers and at 10pts less why take archers? I always take at least two and have used 3 or 4 on occasion. The only problem with them is being too fragile. They certainly aren't a basket to put all of your eggs into but then again I don't think there is a HE unit that fits that bill. I always use the six shot option as every time I try the long bolt it doesn't even kill a single enemy. Personally I don't see why races without the repeater option would take bolt throwers.

Anyway back to the question. I don't take more than two at less than 2000pts as 3-4 RBTs in 1500pts is nearly a third of your army and if the enemy has any nice war machines they will knock them out as fast as they can fire (happened to me yesterday. RBT got one round of firing off before Warpfire Cannon shell exploded on it killing both of the crew). But at 2500pts 400pts of RBT goodness is nothing leaving you a nice army for them to deal with while taking 24 RBT shots a turn =).


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PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2011 5:13 am 
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I find the vast majority of high elf shooting relatively useless. I take enough to kill pesky things like fast cav, and simply leave the rest at home. It's the fact that if something is easy to kill, then it's generally taken in hordes and large units, and if it's relatively hard to kill then high elf shooting can barely touch it.
Generally this means that I take one bolt thrower and a unit of archers. Subsequently however, I find that I sometimes have to use my support units to take out theirs, as I can't shoot them all to death.

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PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2011 3:37 pm 
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It depends on your meta game I had planned to take none but now I'll take two. RBT aren't going to be worth it though without curse of arrow attraction. What I do is I put my mage with a reaver bow in my 20 lsg with banner of eternal flame. With the mages 3 S5 shots and the LSG shots I can pretty much always do a wound to a hydra, treeman,Troll unit or HPA, and to have the RBT's follow up that shooting I can often finish these things off. Also good vs a Light mages unit if he uses earthblood.

Tactically I find this necessary as before when I had an all combat army my opponents could avoid much of the combat. Now if I can kill an HPA or a Hydra my opponent needs to come to me to get those points back, so I like my 2 RBT's but I think over 2 is overkill.


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PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2011 3:43 pm 
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Hmmm I thought the Reaver bow doesnt get flaming attacks as it is a magic weapon.

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PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2011 4:56 pm 
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hewhorocks wrote:
Hmmm I thought the Reaver bow doesnt get flaming attacks as it is a magic weapon.

Yep, it won't be flaming if it's in a unit with the Banner of Eternal Flame. Still nice to have though.

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PostPosted: Sun May 01, 2011 7:14 pm 
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ZAHG wrote:
at 10pts less why take archers?

It's that Archers are Core I think.

ZAHG wrote:
Personally I don't see why races without the repeater option would take bolt throwers.

They tend to be cheaper.

ZAHG wrote:
I always take at least two

Me too. They do well for me.

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PostPosted: Mon May 02, 2011 8:13 am 
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grantmepower wrote:
hewhorocks wrote:
Hmmm I thought the Reaver bow doesnt get flaming attacks as it is a magic weapon.

Yep, it won't be flaming if it's in a unit with the Banner of Eternal Flame. Still nice to have though.

No flaming attacks, but it matters less in this case because you shoot at the same time as the LSG who do have flaming attacks. So if one of the LSG manages to wound the hydra then it doesn't get the regen against the reaver bow either. So pray for those 6's.

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PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2011 2:54 pm 
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SpellArcher wrote:
I think krysith has had some joy with multiple RBT's also.

Under hard comp they tend to be limited to 2 as for some armies versing lots of RBT is a no-fun game. I suspect lots of RBT increase the importance of match-up, being great against some enemies and poor against others.

It's interesting how RBT were regarded pretty poorly a few months ago but now feature in perhaps the majority of lists.



I own 6 RBTs and I have played with all 6 on the board (even in 8th edition, at 3000 pts). I have had some joy, but it has been limited.

There are three advantages to RBTs over archers: range, armor piercing (-2), and the ability to shoot all around. Because archers are decently mobile, and can musician reform to shoot a foe initially out of their line of sight with only a Ld check and -1 for moving, I find the only big advantage to RBTs is their armor piercing ability.

RBTs are great against armored targets. The more expensive per wound the target is, the better. Chaos Knights and Bloodcrushers, despite their speed, are great targets for RBTs. Bretts are too. You won't get many shots before combat, but compared to what other shooters do you'll much do better. If you play it right, you'll always have some target to shoot at once your best targets get in combat.

What RBTs don't have that archers do is: steadfast, stand-and-shoot, combat capability, and lots of S3 shots (better against high T).

I find myself fielding more archers and less RBTs these days.

One of the big reasons is combat capability: either the RBT or whatever is defending it will almost certainly see combat. I can choose between sacrificing an RBT to get a tactical advantage (such as by pulling a unit away from the battle) or give up some of that tactical advantage by intercepting with a unit. Archers can perform the same function while actually performing in combat. In combat, archers are 11 pts per wound and S3 attack, while RBTs are 50 points per. RBTs never get steadfast. So I prefer archers in general despite their lack of armor piercing, just because they can fight, albeit weakly.

The other reason is more meta. Because everyone has to find a way to beat a gunline sooner or later, there are lots of good tactics that have been worked out in 8th edition for taking out warmachines (poisoned gutter runners, skinks, initiative test spells, tomb scorps, etc). Some of these were around in 7th (e.g. tomb scorps), but there are a lot of new threats which take advantage of the changes to war machine rules (e.g. poison). These work well enough against dwarf warmachines, which are reasonably tough. Against RBTs they are devastating.

I think as long as you aren't facing an army which includes more than one good way to kill warmachines, RBTs are pretty good. They are very important for balancing out your shooting between lots of weak shots and a few strong, penetrating shots, so that your army can shoot well against all comers. One or two RBTs is a really great, flexible threat to add to an army. Outranging your enemy is the first step to predicting/controlling his actions. However, I can't recommend loading up on 4+ RBTs, simply because then you are extremely vulnerable to effective anti-warmachine tactics.

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PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2011 6:13 pm 
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New thought - Naked Prince with Seafarer bow = 210 points. In a 2k pt game, and a lesser geared archmage, you don't need to buy the RBT's.

Prince can bunker with 10 archers (the ones who would have guarded the bolt thrower anyway), move and shoot if necessary (still at 2+ to hit at long range after moving <.<) stand and shoot, toss a great weapon if you really want it, but it's so much more useful and he has +1 wound on the two bolt throwers, and far more consistent. He can easily shift 5 inches to get a flank shot on a small knight unit!


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PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2011 11:03 pm 
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I have always loved the usefulness of Repeater Bolt Throwers. Even with the disadvantage of only two wounds now, I still think they're very useful and can have game-winning application in every game I play.

The downside? They're not necessarily more useful than something else I can buy for the equivalent point cost. I look at an RBT, then I look at another rank of elite infantry, and find myself reaching for the elite infantry.

That being said, I have fought against a number of opponents still using bolt throwers (both High and Dark) and I find them very frustrating to deal with. They're doom versus Elves, with our relatively fragile stat line and high Point Per Model ratio. They also make the cumulative wounds caused by Core shooters more significant, since (let's face it) the casualties they typically cause are generally negligible against anything but lightly-armored single models or small units.

I may try revisiting them in a game this weekend to see how they perform.


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PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2011 12:59 am 
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Just one single RBT can be enough to keep an enemy wizard honest. Everytime I've left RBT's behind, my opponent will begin running his casters around the battlefield unchecked. Never again!

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PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2011 9:40 am 
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Baeronvonbleat wrote:
New thought - Naked Prince with Seafarer bow = 210 points. In a 2k pt game, and a lesser geared archmage, you don't need to buy the RBT's.

Prince can bunker with 10 archers (the ones who would have guarded the bolt thrower anyway), move and shoot if necessary (still at 2+ to hit at long range after moving <.<) stand and shoot, toss a great weapon if you really want it, but it's so much more useful and he has +1 wound on the two bolt throwers, and far more consistent. He can easily shift 5 inches to get a flank shot on a small knight unit!

It's interesting but to be worth it I think the Prince needs to be able to fight too. I'd throw in Armour of Caledor minimum and maybe Opal Amulet or Talisman of Loec. Then he can be deployed in any infantry unit and go from there.

I run a Chariot Prince with Reaver Bow. I'm not convinced yet that he's worth his place but having tested both bows under 7th I prefer Reaver. There are too many times when the single shot of Seafarer does not have a good target for me. Reaver has only been so-so for me under 8th but as you say it is mobile and tends to survive the game.

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PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2011 4:39 pm 
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Although it might be necroing
Got to say I prefer archers. RBT come out of the points you should be spending on elite infantry, archers don't. Archers also make a good unit to dump a mage in, since they are less likely to see melee. Also if your enemy decides to dump war machine fire on your archer unit, bonus, because he isn't targeting your expensive elite infantry.

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PostPosted: Wed May 11, 2011 7:23 pm 
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No but Archers arent that much cheaper than elites.

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PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 7:00 am 
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eriktheguy wrote:
Although it might be necroing
Got to say I prefer archers. RBT come out of the points you should be spending on elite infantry, archers don't. Archers also make a good unit to dump a mage in, since they are less likely to see melee. Also if your enemy decides to dump war machine fire on your archer unit, bonus, because he isn't targeting your expensive elite infantry.


I'm not entirely sure they're less likely to see melee though. Any DECENT list is going to have some form of warmachine hunting. If your list doesn't feature warmachines, then your opponent will likely use that unit to get in your back ranks anyway and kill things like archers sitting in the back of your lines. It's just a thought I had. I honestly don't take RBT's at all, or archers, but 3+ RBT's seem like they could do some decent damage against squishier armies like Skaven, all of the elves, Vampire counts, etc.


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PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 10:08 pm 
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+1 eriktheguy...

An RBT is 7 Phoenix Guard...
9 Archers is 11 Spearmen.

11 Spearmen are never going to be worth 7 Phoenix Guard, (I picked PG because they are the closest elite to Spearmen, given that they tarpit, win with static, and both deal about the same damage).

9 Archers are very different from RBTs... little to claim here other than the fact that I prefer the 7 extra wounds, mobility and bunker properties of archers. Don't know how many times I have flanked charged with archers FTW.


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PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 11:18 pm 
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wbarobinson wrote:
11 Spearmen are never going to be worth 7 Phoenix Guard,

They are better at breaking Steadfast.

wbarobinson wrote:
9 Archers are very different from RBTs...

The Archers obviously have the advantage that they are potentially a fighting unit and against light shooting targets they are comparable. But RBT can achieve other things in the shooting phase that no other HE unit can.

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PostPosted: Thu May 12, 2011 11:27 pm 
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I see the RBT as two things:

1. Reliability. Whereas archers can struggle against annoying things, RBT are much more reliable.
2. Cheap insurance. The ability to put out S6 no armour save bolts at 48" gives us a tactical option we don't otherwise have. This bolt can mean the difference between an offensive greater daemon and a cautious one - something which will allow you to do what High Elves do best: dictate movement. With the proper army composition (S6-7 characters, potion of strength hidden on a champ, dangerous magic...) it becomes a big deal whether the monster you plays against has 3 or 5 wounds.

Whether it's worth its points for this, I'm not sure. Probably not, but it covers a weakness and as such it should probably be a bit expensive. I find that taking one more often than not gives me lots of tactical options. The few games where it doesn't I can just blast away a model or three at a time, slowly weakening tough units.

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PostPosted: Fri May 13, 2011 10:21 am 
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why to take it?
-because most people take some units to hunt warmachines. if you dont have warmachines they will instead harass and block more important units instead of trying to get them. your archers can defend against most warmachine hunters with easy.
-dictate movement against big stuff. archers with flaming banner together with a bolt thrower will be a threat against a alot of regenerating monsters.
-to get rid of small redirecting units
-flexibility


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PostPosted: Fri May 13, 2011 8:45 pm 
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Took 8 of them on Weds in a 5k game against Orcs + Goblins.

They didn't win the game outright for me, but their combined ability to:
a) take entire units of big uns off the table in one shooting phase
b) scare the heck outta giants/araknarok
was priceless. Their tactical flexibility and potential is undeniable, especially in large numbers.

Ended up winning 3700VP to 300VP.

So to answer the OP, rbt spam worked well for me at that high points level. I dont know if id invest at smaller games like 2k.
I say take very few or loads ... Don't go somewhere in the middle...


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PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2011 8:16 pm 
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Not sure arachnarok is a good example. I think it's pretty weak as far as monsters go. I have 2 units in my army that can easily toast it. My PG destroy it with combat res, my SM chop it up before it gets any attacks. My metal mage can threaten it, but I consider that a waste of spells.
But I see your point, vs big monsters RBTs beat archers. That's because anti-monster is not an archer role. Archers are for taking out dangerous units with little protection, such as skaven weapon teams and fast cav.

For me it's a balancing act between archers and spearmen, and another balance between RBTs and elite infantry.
Archers excel at sniping squishy but dangerous units. Spearmen are excellent anvils that can dice hordes. I take mostly spearmen with a few archers.
RBTs and elite infantry are both great at killing monsters. Any of our elite infantry can hold their own against monsters. White lions really shine, SM are better against monstrous infantry or med-hev infantry. PG are great bunkers and anvils, and can still win many combats by combat res. They all kill monsters about as well as an RBT, but also serve other roles, so I prefer my infantry.

Regarding war-machine hunters killing my archers? As HE, I'm not worried. My eagles can distract just about anything, my metal mage can snipe chariots/heavy cav (and if your opponent is throwing heavy cav at your archers, you already have the advantage), and the archers themselves can handle fast cav and light flyers. Also, they aren't bad in melee. They can hold their own against most army's core infantry, and are often hitting on 3+ with re-rolls (8/9 attacks hit).

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PostPosted: Sun May 15, 2011 10:53 pm 
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eriktheguy wrote:
They all kill monsters about as well as an RBT, but also serve other roles, so I prefer my infantry.

Though RBT have the advantage that they can do it at range.

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PostPosted: Mon May 16, 2011 4:36 pm 
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I find shadow (read withering) plus multiple bolt throwers literally deletes units...

It also drops monsters even the regeneratory ones really fast but that selects your lore and its then better to back them up with some archers to mop up left overs.


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PostPosted: Mon May 16, 2011 5:08 pm 
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I dropped a lvl 2 mage and a Lion Chariot to put in 3 Bolt throwers. I am going to keep it that way, which is sad as I loved the looks of the Chariot. The Bolt throwers just give me options the Chariot, and even to a lesser extent, the Mage, didn't usually deliver.

C'est la vie.


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PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 2:53 am 
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Bobo just came top 10 at a ETC comp event with all core, 4 bolters and 4 eagles! :shock:

Another top 20 high elf had a similar list. No elites.


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PostPosted: Tue May 17, 2011 3:00 am 
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Neat to know. However, it's important to acknowledge that ETC comp is a whole different beastie (at least meta-game wise) than uncomped 8th edition.

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