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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 5:23 pm 
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rusty wrote:
alenui wrote:
For a swift reform you test first then Reform. Just checked in the rulebook not sure where any confusion comes from it makes the order clear. Was there an FAQ that changed anything?


I'll have to check my rulebook and FAQs tonight. If there's any mistake here the fault's mine.


From the BRB: "...If the test is passed, the unit immediately makes a swift reform. If failed, the unit makes a normal reform instead, ..." The reason I faced off to the East was because I would've moved here. If I'd known the test would fail I would've faced front to the thirster, which, incidentally, would've caused a failed charge (since you just barely made your roll and reforming 90 degrees in another direction would've removed an inch or so). Regardless, this was hardly what lost me the game, what with the middle being totally f***ed and all, although it would've been interesting had I gotten the charge on you then (20" away + 6" failed charge means you would've been 14" away from me).

Anyways, no hard feelings and next time we'll know :)

With regards to the Fiends: Your math seem correct at a glance Baeronvonbleat. The end of the story is that likely, I'm giving up 3-4 Princes to wipe out the unit, IF I get the charge. To get the charge, I have to plant an Eagle in front of them so that he:
- can only shuffle or charge
- if he charges, probably won't overrun into me
- if he shuffles, will still be in my arc/likely range

To even get to this situation would be hard. Not impossible mind you, as the Eagle is very mobile, but it might've worked. The point here is that I should've tried committing my Cavalry on the other flank. I imagine the deployment should've been somewhat like this:

thirster - daemonettes - daemonettes - fiends - flamers

archers - void - spearelves - swordmasters - dragon princes - white lions

With the Dragon Princes being just to the left of my hill. This means that if his flamers would've wanted to go against my Swordmasters, they'd have to present themselves to a Dragon Princes charge - my Lions protecting a potential flank from Fiends. Siren @ swordmasters probably wouldn't have been a big deal. The only problem with this is his Thirster which, with a bit of luck, could've rampaged quite a bit on my flank. 1 option here is using Archers / Eagle to misdirect him, since he has to overrun (hatred) it'll lose him a turn or two. A smart player (which rusty is) will just ignore these cheap redirectors, leaving them for the Furies. With a 20" fly move he can just position himself for a lovely flank-domino effect.

More than anything I think this game and the resulting discussion highlighted the fact that one of this list's key weaknesses is big, fast monsters (fiends + thirster is mainly what we've been discussing). I know Seredain used to have 2 RBT in his list, and his one game (as far as I know the only one, at least documented) against a list like this had the opposing Greater Daemon hiding behind terrain all the time. Personally, I consider this too cowardly - a Bloodthirster shouldn't fear exposing himself to 2 simple RBT shots, at least not for one turn (in Seredain's game he ended up doing nothing the entire game). Anyways, point is I don't know if RBT would mitigate this problem. Honestly, I don't know what would, save for Mindrazor / Caradryan.

Thoughts?

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 5:39 pm 
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Using my Awesome Hindsight!

1. Archers west side - Stand and shoot. It's a hail mary charge for the thirster, and odds are he won't make it. nets you a possible wound, and saves a round of shooting (plus archers can do something like take the house).

2. Don't let the spears go alone! - There wasn't much room to move your princes, but they do have LOS on the spears Daemonettes. It's an ideal match up, you could knock out the ASF, and really even the odds!

3. Sometimes the throne isn't worth it. 3d6 Flesh to stone on spears (5 toughness should be enough), leaves a 4d6 for options.

Ok, the princes charge might have been dodgy (if the spears fail, your princes are vulnerable, or stuck in the back side, and you don't expect them to fail the re-rolable 10+ reform.) but I think it's viable. Everything else is as I'd play it.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 6:23 pm 
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Curu Olannon wrote:
The only problem with this is his Thirster ..... since he has to overrun (hatred)
Hatred does not force overrun/pursuit in 8th. There is no disadvantage at all to Hatred now. Even if this was 7th, when Hatred forced those things, the Bloodthirster does not actually have Hatred - he just get to re-roll all misses. It's the Daemon book; it is always a little better than you imagine it would be.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 6:45 pm 
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@Dabber
My calculations on the Dragon Princes was based on being 8 wide (to maximise number in contact but thinking about it you can only get a frontage of six my mistake on fiend base sizes) and included horses against this kind of army I would have the Dragon Princes wider than 5 otherwise you would miss out on alot of attacks why have them in a narrow formation? (in general not that there won't be times when it makes sense). Discounting likely deaths from combat res is going make a big difference what would happen in the second round. Any charge isn't necessarily going to go well but you can only work on the basis that there is a strong probability this charge would work out well (probably losing 2-4 Dragon Princes in the process.

@Curu
Solutions against Bloodthirster are generally RBT, Mindrazor/Withering, large units of GW troops or several large ranked units with Flesh to Stone. The Bolt throwers probably won't kill the Blood Thirster but a wound or two makes him wary to charge any GW unit or fight a combat character. Bolt Throwers are the easiest thing to fit in the list with minimal disruption IMO. In fairness you can always just take your chances at not facing one, big flying monsters aren't that popular atm from what I see.


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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 9:31 pm 
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Oops! So Swift reform is
1. LD test
2. reform

I had the two mixed up. Good to know for tomorrow :)

Anyways, if you'd reform to be 20-21" away I wouldn't have charged there, rather I'd flown the thirster to your rear, facing forward and used the furies to set up a bad situation for you.

Regarding the thirster: Chipping wounds off won't work if the thirster bring Life.. He has to die decisively.

Fiends can backpedal 5". In this game you could probably have won your right flank by eagle/dragonprinces, since flamers are useless vs DP. Although you'd still have to block a Siren song on any DP that would like to charge Fiends.

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 11:01 pm 
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@Baeronvonbleat - Thirster was 19" away but failed anyways. I'm not sure it would be a wise idea to stand and shoot - with a champion I would've though! I'm not sure what you would've wanted me to do with Spears, could you please elaborate on this point? As was pointed out earlier, your comment about Throne is spot on! It was a waste of dice. Btw - the reform wasn't on re-roll LD10 as Naenor was out of range.

@dabber - I see that you're right! It's just frenzy which forces that now. Oh well, special kind of Daemon hatred as well - why aren't I surprised?

@alenui - I'm very hesitant to include RBT as I feel my recent games have shown how extremely overpriced they are. When I see anything from Doom Divers to Ironblasters I cannot justify taking them unless they really fill a niche. I might be forced to reconsider my magic setup though!

@rusty - backpedaling makes life hard when trying to block things out. Fiends are a pain for a list like this, no doubt.

Unfortunately I have som bad news. I can't attend the tournament tomorrow as I've gotten sick. It's really annoying because I've been wanting to go and play in a real tournament environment for a long time now. Next chance isn't until next year. At least I'll have plenty of time for list refinement.

With that being said I'll make sure and keep playing games, have no fear :)

Regards,
~Olannon

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PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2011 11:12 pm 
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Yeah not saying they are great just the least disruption to your list. Bolt Throwers are hardly all that overpointed though, 20pts maybe. I've always been pretty happy with them even if they cost a little more than they should, they fill a role and if you need that role filling you pay the points. To me they would at least make your archers make more sense in your list.

Sad news on being ill :(. Hope you feel better soon.


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2011 1:51 pm 
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I've been thinking a lot about the 'big fast nasties' which my list, as it stands now, has problems with. A current look at the meta tells us that the following armies are likely to have them:
- Daemons of Chaos in the shape of various Greater Daemons
- High Elves in the shape of a Dragonlord

Although these are not too common, given the amount of armies out there that don't field them, I believe alternate list approaches should be considered. Being able to deal with these doesn't necessarily mean altering your list too much. Indeed, as has been suggested, perhaps a change of magic focus is enough in itself.

Speaking of magic, one of my main reasons for taking Life was the ability to draw out a dispel scroll before combat is initiated, making sure that I can cast necessary buffs and hexes as I please. Regardless of a lore choice I believe this to be a pretty important aspect of magic strategy.

Moving on, we quickly find that the Lore of Shadow is the only lore which really helps me with my problem. As far as Shadow goes, I believe a selection of at least 5 spells is necessary. In general, there are 2 ways to solve this particular problem:
1 - Have an Archmage with a Silver Wand
2 - Pick the lore with 2 casters

Now, I don't want to compromise my magical defenses as I've really fallen in love with the crystal. I see the following approaches as viable:
1. Keep the list as is and simply swap the lores for my mages
2. Make a mage-knight out of the prince and pick the annulian on him, giving the support mage flexibility
3. Make a mage-knight out of the prince and pick shadow with him, allowing a flexible lore for the support caster

Option 1 means I have a very one-dimensional magic phase: it'll only be spells from Shadow. I view this as inherently sub-optimal as some lists don't fear the lore enough on its own to drop a dispel scroll before combat is initiated. For example, the Daemon army I recently faced wouldn't care about Pit and I don't have enough shooting/follow-up magic to make Withering scroll-worthy. I also see this problem against High Elves, Wood Elves and Warriors of Chaos, possibly more. Long story short, if I can avoid this relatively easily, I will.

Option 2 could look like the following:
- Barded Steed w/ mounted Prince: Gem of Hoeth, Dragon Helm, Luckstone, Great Weapon, Annulian Crystal, Heavy Armour. This basically makes him into a support character rather than a take-on-anything-and-everything guy. He still sports a 2+ armour save with a single re-roll. This allows the support mage to for example pick Seerstaff: Flames of the Phoenix + Vaul's unmaking. With this combo, I don't see a single army that wouldn't want to waste its scroll before combat is started: virtually everyone has a fear for Vaul's and those who do not at least fear Withering + Flames or Pit. Naturally, I could pick other things with the Seerstaff as well, or simply go for another arcane item (Ring of Corin for example).

Option 3 would mean I basically have a 'free mage'. Problem is, what to pick with him? To ensure dispel scrolls being drawn out you usually need to pick dangerous spells and with the crystal, that's impossible.

Let's take a look at what the Prince does today: with 4S7 ASF attacks and a 1+ re-rollable save, he's there to take on relatively tough units on his own. Examples include my very first game vs WoC and my games against Wood Elves in which he's usually been able to take out a Treeman with relative ease. With Life, this is a very, very hard combination as he'll regain his wounds with every cast I have, assuming the Archmage is close enough. With Shadow though, this role isn't really critical for him to fill: with Withering and Mindrazor I already have a very good response from basically any unit! Granted, I can't rely on magic 100% (at least I will not) but a decent-sized unit of White Lions should help out here. So, going with Shadow begs the question: is the Cavalry Prince obsolete? For his points plus that of his Dragon Princes bodyguards, you can get a lot of elite infantry which are equally deadly with help from Shadow. Phoenix Guard are more durable as well.

The Dilemma here is that what started out as a simple lore switch might imply that army changes are necessary. I haven't made up my mind just yet, just thought I'd share my thoughts with you all. Hopefully, you have an idea or two on your minds. In particular, I'd like to hear what existing Shadow-generals think about all this (Tethlis and Ptolemy spring to mind).

Naturally, with this approach I give away the miscast protection which Life often brings. It's a trade-off I also have to consider.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 1:34 am 
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About my suggestion to deploy against the fiends: this is not because I underestimate them as an easy target. Rather, it is probably because I overestimate them. Fiends have a march of 20", and are hard, fast, killer units. Because they are the fastest monstrous infantry in the game (by far), I have realized in my games with and against daemons that a big unit of fiends can't be ignored. They are simply too fast. If you try to deploy refused away from them, you either need to sacrifice both your eagles to slow them down until turn 3 or 4, or you risk them coming into your rear while the daemon infantry hit your front in turn 2 or 3. Realize, in this situation, even if you can slow the fiends down to where they can't charge until turn 4, that means you are confident your army can destroy his infantry by turn 4, which isn't easy. Even using both eagles against fiends, they are still fast enough to get into your rear before mid game. Slowing them simply isn't an option unless you have something like 4 eagles. This is basically what happened in your game: they got into your backline quickly and put a lot of pressure on you.

If, however, you deploy against them, you are banking on being able to slow his infantry, which is much easier. Realize because of how wide his army is, one eagle blocking one unit of infantry can also stop the other infantry unit from getting into the fray. As they are slower, you can even slow them down to not hit you until turn 4 or 5. It significantly slows his army and allows more turns for your magic and shooting to make a dent in their infantry (and gives you more turns to kill the fiends). Doing this puts pressure on your opponent rather than on you. He either must slow down his fiends, which lets you charge them, or push them forward, which opens him up to counter charges. It is easier to deal 21 wounds to fiends by turn 4 than it is to kill 30+ daemonettes by turn 3.

Basically, what my plan would have been (in general, ignoring the bloodthirster as he probably would have deployed him differently, so I can't plan on how to counter him without seeing where he ends up against your new deployment method) was to send the DPs against the flamers and advance both your spears and WLs full speed into charge range against the fiends (BSB with them) while an eagle moves to re-direct the daemonette unit to the R. This gives him two options: charge with the fiends (where he is flank charged by your other infantry unit, as he cannot charge both in 8th ed), OR not charge, where you charge him with both spears and WLs. Both units can absorb a charge by fiends, as spears are steadfast and WLs are stubborn, so with BSB nearby you should stand, and this isn't a huge risk. Even though he gets 4 stomps you should be able to deal with them in a few turns (and if not, the DPs should be prepared for a rear charge by turn 3 or 4 after they deal with flamers).

Granted, as you said, shadow would help here, as decreasing the I of the fiends by 1 and the WS by 1 means both the WLs and spears hit on 3s and get re-rolls, so Miasma is golden here. Even without it, though, you should be able to cause some carnage.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 2:39 pm 
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Good reasoning there jwg20! I believe I'm still too inexperienced against certain units/armies/matchups to identify situations and responses properly. This was probably one of them.

As for my last post, I would like to propose a suggestion. Hopefully you'll have an opinion about it which you'd like to share here.

The idea of this twist is as follows: 2 solid infantry cores will provide the anvils of my army. Coupled with Shadow these can be very deadly. The idea for these 2 blocks is to simply have enough models left to dish out pain, given magical support. 2 other units will act as flankers, hammers, whatever I need them to. Thus, instead of having '4 combat units' I've gone for a more traditional 2+2 approach. The list:

Shadow Archmage Curu Olannon, level 4, Silver Wand, Guardian Phoenix - 295
Prince Saerith, Barded Elven Steed, Heavy Armour, Great Weapon, Luckstone, Dragonhelm, Radiant Gem of Hoeth (Lore of Beasts), Annulian Crystal, Shield - 295
High Mage Cael, level 2, Seerstaff of Saphery (Flames of the Phoenix, Vaul's Unmaking) - 165
Noble Naenor, Battle Standard Bearer, Great Weapon, Armor of Caledor, Dawnstone - 168

Characters total: 923

12 Archers, musician - 137
12 Archers, musician - 137
35 Spearelves, full command and Banner of Swiftness - 355

Core total: 629

12 White Lions, musician and standard bearer with Banner of Eternal Flame - 208
7 Dragon Princes, Drakemaster, Musician - 240
20 Phoenix Guard, full command and Banner of Sorcery, Amulet of Light - 395

Special total: 843

2 Great Eagles - 100

Rare total: 100

Army total: 2495

It's fairly character heavy for a High Elf army. With that being said, each character has at least one very important role to play:
- The Prince has good damage output against normal rank and file, and, coupled with the DP, provide a solid hammer. He also improves my magic defense drastically, allowing my other mages to improve their spell selection to a point where I always have a threat.
- The Archmage is the bread and butter of any (non-Dragon) High Elf army. Taking Shadow on him allows me to handle the situations I'm usually uncomfortable with: tough monsters and hordes (withering/mindrazor/pit, miasma/enfeebling foe respectively). Silver Wand to give that extra edge in spell selection and a ward to help out somewhat against snipers, miscasts etc rounds him off nicely
- The BSB is fairly standard. In my opinion, this is the best kit for him: he keeps receiving a hurt in melee and a 2+/2+ really helps here. The alternative is to give him a Reaver Bow and play him defensively but I don't really think it suits this army: between my mages the Archers will be hard pressed as it is with being bunkers and the Reaver Bow doesn't really synergize very well with the overall army approach
- The support mage helps with 3 issues in particular: He makes most armies use a scroll before combat is initiated (Vaul's tends to have that effect), he helps me deal with one-trick-ponies (Drakenhoff, Pendant) and annoyances (Hellheart, Puppet). Last but not least he provides great magical synergy: between Withering and Flames going off, any army needs to fear the potential damage.

Core is as it was before. I've contemplated taking Champion with the Archers: If I'm charged by a flying character/monster, I can challenge him out. This means that I only lose 1 model, hold on steadfast (hopefully) and can Mindrazor the next turn around. This also helps my mages from being sniper by long-charging solo characters.

Special:
- With the Prince being less of a powerhouse, I feel the need for a full-sized bodyguard drops. This might seem counter-intuitive, but it's all about his role: whereas he before was meant to be able to take on just about anything on his own, he's now meant to provide a solid supporting unit to my infantry anvils. Against armies that are likely to be able to kill him (anything with loads of artillery) I feel his role is less important: besides this unit will frequently find themselves deploying in 1 rank, reducing the effect of cannons. Taking Wyssan's allows me to duplicate combat spell potential: withering/enfeebling/wyssan's all do roughly the same and all synergize greatly with both of my combat blocks + the cavalry hammer.
- The Lions have now dropped to a pure supporting unit. I've considered dropping the banner and giving it to the Spears, saving some points.
- Phoenix Guard are a natural choice with Shadow: durable, high LD, I6 and Fear go a long way to really take advantage of what the lore has to offer. I've boosted them to have a decent combat-unit size. With Mindrazor their damage output will be insane, thus all I have to ensure is that they end up in combat without losing too many.

Rare sees nothing changed either.

I believe that my biggest weakness is that the list is character heavy.
Another weakness is of course the built-in miscast risk (I really do hate miscasts, if there were any way I could go with Life I'd have taken it). We'll just have to see how this plays out! If the characters prove to be too much, I'll likely drop the Prince and Dragon Princes to add a third mage. The setup will thus likely be roughly as follows:
Archmage Shadow Wand
Mage Beasts Crystal
Mage High Corin

Another weakness is of course the built-in miscast risk (I really do hate miscasts, if there were any way I could go with Life I'd have taken it). We'll just have to see how this plays out!

This allows me to maintain most of my magical power in essence but saves me a lot of points which can go into more elite infantry: boosting the PG to 24, adding a second small unit of White Lions etc.

So, rant over for now! How do you like this list? What armies do you think it'll struggle the most against? What would you change with it?

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2011 7:15 pm 
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Besides the characters being such a large percentage of your army, I do like the list.

It will have problems against shooting-heavy lists (Dwarves, Empire) as the White Lions will get shot too quickly and without more fast-moving units, you'll might have trouble closing quickly enough. Against combat-focused lists however, the list should do quite well; you can sit back, shoot and magic things to death before closing and ending the game with a good Withering or Mindrazor.

I am slightly concerned with the Lore choices however. The Level Two with Flames and Vauls needs 3 Dice to cast either of those spells effectively, while your Archmage needs about the same. This means on an average Magic Phase you'll get two spells off with your Archmage, and one with your baby-mage (or vice-versus), but where does that leave your Prince? Any additional dice will probably be given to Curu, as he can make the most of them, and using three dice on Wildform just doesn't give the same return that using similar dice for Shadow Spells does (like Withering or Mindrazor). I'd ideally like to see Saerith swap to something he can cast on a single dice (or two if you want to play it safe) so that he's not sucking dice away from your other mages (who will be doing most of the damage anyway): an additional cast of Miasma, for instance, each turn really could help buy you more time, and would be more reliable than Wildform. As you point out, the role of the Dragon Princes is now supporting meaning they don't need to pack a punch by themselves in order to win you the game.

I'm also not a fan of Amulet of Light on the Phoenix Guard - it's twenty-seven points that players can pretty easily avoid but it will help if you have to fight more Wood Elf Tree-lists. This final tweak would allow you to buy a couple more White Lions, making them fourteen: which would help round out the list nicely.

Finally, and as an unrelated change, since you are using the Dragon Princes now as a supporting aspect, you could also consider dropping the Prince for a single level one/two with the Crystal, and putting the BSB in with the Dragon Princes. Since the Knights are providing a supporting function, the re-roll should still be kept within range of most of the army, and this allows you to save some points to use elsewhere. Something like:

Characters:
Curu Olannon - 295
Cael - 165
Naenor - BSB, Barded Steed, Heavy Armor, Great Weapon, Dawnstone, Dragonhelm - 173
Mage Level One - Lore of Beasts/Shadow, Annulian Crystal - 140

That saves you an even 150 points which could be put into buying back some White Lions, Dragon Princes, Eagles, or some combination of the three. This also provides a better home for Amulet of the Light (on Naenor), as on Cavalry, you'll be able to ensure you connect with those things which don't like Magic Attacks.

Hope that helps!

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 3:25 am 
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I can see the potential trouble against shooting lists. I'd rather have this weakness than weakness to monsters though ;)

Lore choices has all to do with the right spell at the right time: I don't nearly expect every caster to always cast something, however I do believe I'll always have 2+ useful spells to cast. I can't yet think of any situation in which there aren't at least two good spells to cast. This is what investing a lot of points, magic-wise, is all about, in my opinion.

I'll consider dropping the Prince and mounting the BSB. Most likely though I'll simply drop the Prince make the DP a plain 5-man unit. First of all I'm interested in seeing how this list is going to play out.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 1:00 pm 
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One thought about my own playstyle that might be relevant to how you you play: I find that an agressive playstyle opens up a lot more options, in that it forces your opponent to react and opens him up to making errors that I can capitalize on, if I have a sufficiently mobile army. It's a bit mindset dependent, and more of a general guideline. I find it works well with Wood Elves and Daemons of Slaanesh. Not a very spesific tactic though, more of "Full speed ahead and damn the torpedoes".

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 1:47 pm 
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When looking at real life examples, I usually see that succesfull generals are often very agressive in their battle plans. Arguably the best general ever, Alexander the Great, was a very agressive general. He often forced decicions and quickly dictated the outcome of the battle. He created match-ups that favoured him.

I think this is the key. If you are agressive, you can choose which battles you will fight. You can create opportunities that are valuable for you but not for your opponent. You force your opponent to react to what you are doing and you can ensure that you are two steps ahead of him.

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 2:23 pm 
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OOh can i please play against any list of yours with the list i won hexcon with? Was really dissapointed in the lack of competition there as there was so few attendants and the most competitive didnt show and Rusty had to arrange. But i really beat the ones there with a margin, taking out most their army with only loosing about 2-300 points myself. Could you beat my MSU 12 regular drop + 3 chameleon skink drop lizardmen? Well of course you can if you tailor and we play without terrain, but HE isnt a good matchup for them judged by the 2 i meet, even if they are not as good generals.
I think my list works better as a defensive list than your shooty 1, as it has also more units and superior movement on them fast small skinks units and during the game they do as much damage as the slann does if left unharmed. Even if i dont have as much experience with my Liz list i think maybe its easier to control the game with, but maybe a bit boring to play a lot against for most opponents as they dont get to where they want unless i permit it or has a greater deamon that can fly in to where they want faster and hope for the best as i also has to counter other fast stuff..


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 08, 2011 9:28 pm 
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Sorry about the delay in the response.

In the Battle vs the Daemons, the Spears and White Lions were forced to charge separate Daemonette units.

While the lions had the capacity to do damage, the spears are more likely to soak damage, and would probably lose the battle. However, the Dragon Princes were positioned to have an excellent combo charge to support. From the picture, they have a clear LOS on the Daemonettes, and they do not appear to be that much farther than the Spearmen. Unless the spears were risking a very large charge (8+) it would have been viable to have the dragon princes charge as well.

Though the charge would not have been possible initially, once the spearmen charge, it opens up the charge path so it is declarable, and I believe this would have been an ideal combo charge. As it was, hindsight is 20/20, so it might not be the case.

*edit* Besides general added resolution and mayhem, the cavalry prince could have challenged, forcing his Herald to answer and killing the herald outright, which may have saved your bsb?


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 4:06 pm 
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@rusty - agreed about aggressive playstyles: they tend to create more hard situations for your opponent. The more rope you give him to hang himself, the better.

@Rod - choosing which battles to fight, when and where is crucial to High Elves without a doubt. Good comparison!

@Iniesta - I'm sure we can get a game going at some point not too far into the future. I need to get well first though. As for playing MSU lists, I'm not sure how this would perform. I believe a list like yours would struggle the most against real hard shooty lists (6-machine Dwarf armies spring to mind...) and fast lists which can cope with your skirmishers. Have you tried rusty's wood elves for example? Between his Archers having no move-and-shoot penalty, Treeman strangeroots and rock-hard forest spirits, I believe it could give you a good fight!

@Baeronvonbleat - The Dragon Princes were too close to the Lions to be able to do this. With a little more careful positioning I could've probably achieved this. As for my BSB, he survived just fine against the Herald but died when I broke from combat.

As for the overall list, I would still feel more comfortable with Life as my main lore because I feel it suits me better. With that being said, I do not see how I can effectively incorporate it while still having solutions for 'most things out there'. In particular, I'm worried about hard knight busses, big flying monsters (HE Dragonlords, Bloodthirsters) and other nasties (Terrorgheist). Maybe it would be feasible with 2 RBT's but that would seriously cut down on my combat units.

What do you all think? Is the rock-hard cavalry Prince backed by Life the better choice here or is this list like most other High Elf lists dependent upon Shadow for having effective counter-measures to typical threats? In addition to analysis I'd love suggestions for complete lists addressing these issues, preferably based upon the approaches you've seen in this thread.

Regards,
~Olannon

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 4:20 pm 
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Curu Olannon wrote:
In particular, I'm worried about hard knight busses, big flying monsters (HE Dragonlords, Bloodthirsters) and other nasties (Terrorgheist). Maybe it would be feasible with 2 RBT's but that would seriously cut down on my combat units.



My new list can deal with all of those things. Tell me what you think.
viewtopic.php?f=67&t=37237


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 8:36 pm 
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@Curu
We (Ugrush, Iniesta) were talking about doing a megabattle desember 10. You inn?

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 09, 2011 9:45 pm 
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I played an dwarf army on hexcon with 5 warmashines. It had 2 grudge throwers, 1 cannon and 2 organ guns. He ended the game with only his lord left on the board edge with only 1 wound left, killed the rest and only lost 2-300 points. A dwarf army struggles with chargerange and 6 rounds of poisonshots and i get to his wm with skinks/terradons. Specially with playing same height on wm as infantry, it cripples hiding them.
And have beaten rustys list before with a similar list :-)
Not saying it will go that good every time, but its not the worst matchups when there is a lot of terrain.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2011 6:44 pm 
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@Chayal - comments posted, which I'm sure you've noticed ;)

@rusty - I'm not sure but I believe most of December is bad for me. You should probably try and get another 4th and I'll join you after Christmas instead ;)

@Iniesta - would love to actually see such a battle! Of course it depends a lot upon composition etc, not to mention scenarios, but in general I believe such an army could give you a hard time. A lot of terrain obviously helps you a bit.

I'm really eager to try out this new list! I have a couple of thoughts about it but they'll be just that - thoughts - until I get to play it! Hopefully I'll be done being sick by Sunday. It looks like I'll be having my first game against 8th edition Dark Elves then - which should be interesting. The last couple of days I've followed a couple of threads closely, namely army blogs from Tethlis, Brewmaster_D and Ptolemy, along with HE and the downward spiral. In the end I believe that Shadow is a very hard lore to work with as High Elves, though it performs wonderfully at times its high casting values mean that miscasts are inevitable. It hurts us a lot more than most armies out there because of our high points cost, few mages (relative to e.g. empire), weak mages (relative to e.g. Ogre Kingdoms) and our army generally not being very forgiving. I have yet to come up with another magic setup which covers every weakness even close to as well as Shadow though, regardless of the rest of the list.

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PostPosted: Thu Nov 10, 2011 10:05 pm 
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Curu, good luck with the upcoming game and I look foward to reading the report.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2011 4:01 am 
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Thanks Jimmy! It looks like I'll be well enough to play on Sunday, assuming I don't get worse (again).

Being sick has a lot of disadvantages. For one, I'm way behind on my uni-work and exams are coming up very soon... One upside however is all the time I have to Warhammer theory, analyzing, thinking, re-analyzing and re-thinking again. Several people have pointed to my success in the movement phase of the game, given that I have the more mobile elements. I also believe myself that this is one of my main strengths in Warhammer, being able to capitalize on effective movement. Perhaps this comes from playing Tau in 40k, I don't know. Regardless, it's also a very reliable approach (you can't miscast a march move) compared to magic heavy lists.

So, one thing I'm dying to try out is a super-mobile list. Inspired by thelordcal's recent success and discussion in threads like 'HE and the downward spiral', I've decided to give the following list a go:

Prince on Star Dragon, Vambraces of Defense, Great Weapon, Armour of Caledor, Talisman of Loec - 622
Noble BSB on Great Eagle, Heavy Armour, Shield, Great Weapon, Dragonhelm, Dawnstone, Potion of Foolhardiness - 214
Noble on Great Eagle, Dragon Armour, Shield, Helm of Fortune, The Other Trickster's Shard, Great Weapon - 191
High Mage lvl 2, Annulian Crystal, Dragonbane Gem - 180

Characters total: 1208

32 Spears, full command and flamebanner - 323
31 Spears, full command - 304

Core total: 627

23 White Lions, full command and +1M banner, skeinsliver - 415
5 Dragon Princes - 150

Special total: 565

2 Great Eagles - 100

Rare total: 100

Army total: 2500

The army has a very low drop count and extreme mobility, yet there are well over 100 combat-dedicated models. The Spears are around to provide numbers, breaking steadfast. I decided against Archers, believing I'm going to need every support I can in close combat. The Skeinsliver really shines here, with the low drop count I'll usually have +2 to start.

The beauty of having so many flying characters is the ability to charge a combat unit and not watch the Dragon disappear in some stupid challenge. Also, they are so flexible and strong that they can operate without infantry support against a lot of units.

As even my BSB is flying I decided against taking a DP-bus, favoring more attacks and bodies. The Lions will hopefully fit in well here, I believe they're the best choice, especially with +1M banner.

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Last edited by Curu Olannon on Sat Nov 12, 2011 7:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2011 12:26 pm 
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Fun list. I'd like to see it face dwarfs. Terrain and first turn would be very important.

I might have gone for shadow on the lvl 2 and just accepts some explosions. You don't have that many spells anyhow, might as well make them count.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2011 3:46 pm 
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An army threat matrix looks like follows:

Ogre Kingdoms - cannonchariots
Dwarfs - cannons
Empire - cannons
Dark Elves - Mindrazor, pendantlord
High Elves - Mindrazor, WL horde
Wood Elves - nothing major
Daemons - nothing major, could get unlucky vs a Greater Daemon but superior mobility should help out
Vampire Counts - nothing major, Vanhels could be hard though
Tomb Kings - unsure, haven't played the new version yet
Warriors of Chaos - nothing major, barring lucky Hellcannons
Lizardmen - nothing major
Skaven - Storm Banner, WLC

As you can see, the majority of the armies, especially the ones usually considered bad matchups for us, don't really have any good answers to this list. Empire is probably the biggest problem but they tend to have a lot of smaller units which I should be able to engage sooner rather than later, keeping the Dragon out of trouble. All-comer Dwarf lists typically feature one cannon with a burning ball, which doesn't scare me the least. Assuming they have 2 normal cannons, they are no worse to face than Empire. Fences and impassable terrain are key features here, along with me probably getting +2 for first turn roll. This means, in most circumstances, that I only have to face 1 turn of shooting. Since I have 3 flying characters and 2 eagles, backed up by spears to break steadfast and a healthy lion block, I'm not too worried.

The whole reasoning behind the list is based on beating the meta-game: most armies take big, unwieldy combat blocks at its centre supported by smaller units. With my insane hitting power and speed I can annihilate anything support-dedicated and face the big blocks at the end, combo-charging with multiple units. The army has 2 solid anvils, a good combat block, 4 (!) supporters (dragon, each noble, dragon princes) and 2 re-directors. All with just 7 drops, including characters.

Take your average DE army for example: Sorceress in Spears, Dual-hydras, shades, some xbows etc. Here I should be able to engage hydras, shades, xbows and just about anything non-horded and come out on top. Black Guard are capped size-wise which allows a combo-charge of the Dragon + any other support unit to wipe them clear in one round (Noble + Prince = 7S6 + 6S7 attacks, +S4 stomp +D6S7 stomps). This army structure applies for a lot of races, it's not very typical of Dark Elves.

It's true that shooty-anvil-heavy armies represent the biggest problems. However, I believe these weaknesses are favourable to your normal weaknesses: running a normal magic-heavy High Elf list suffers against a LOT in the current metagame: Hellheart, Puppet, Ogre Snipers, Dwarfs dispel dice and spellbreakers, Daemon dual-scrolls, Empire mass dispel dice... The list goes on. Consider this: a daemon army with sundering + 2 scrolls (not too uncommon) has wasted 100 gold before we even start playing, just about.

As for the Mage, High Magic has 2 reasons:
1. It's the only lore which gives me 3 spells on a level 2, since Drain is always free. This allows me to utilize any number of dice effectively. Drain and Saphery will of course normally be the key spells to bolster my magical defense and help my units survive.
2. It's a low casting lore, which means I can get through a lot of defenses even with a lowly level 2. An average magic phase of 7v4 sees me cast, for example: Fury on 3D6, Shield on 2D6, Drain on 2D6.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 12, 2011 11:22 pm 
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So when playing a list like this you really have two deployment phases.

1st being terrain, second your actual placing of troops. Remember that placing advantageous terrain, i usually focus obstacles in the center, placing some buildings in both deployment zones, is key in keeping your big nasty and support characters alive.

Questions:

Where's the mage hiding?

What are you going to do about redirectors? There are a ton this edition; especially in some of our tougher matches. Right now i'd be worried about your spears/lions getting redirected while he systematically dissected the rest of the list.

I agree with a lot of your decisions, High Magic is our best defensive lore. White Lions are superior than the rest our elite infantry when focusing on supporting our big bad dragons.

And play aggressive! Listen to some crazy speed metal or focus on how your opponent slapped yo momma that one time, anything to get you amped up. Second guessing and doubting has no place in a dragon list. I've found that people who play aggressive with Dragon lists tend to perform better than those who play a passive game. While that's not 100% provable, its something to consider.

good luck can't wait to hear some reports!

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 13, 2011 2:05 am 
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Hey Curu,

I love reading your army blog because not only do you post well thought out, thorough articles on the tactics of your lists, but you always seem to be thinking the same thing I am, if not one step ahead when it comes to list ideas. I too have been toying with the idea of a dragon led list. I really do think you're on to something, because it's so rare this edition. I found that when 8th came out, people said "no more guess ranges on artillery? I guess we can kiss ridden monsters goodbye" and immediately abandoned the idea. As a result, like you mention, the meta has shifted somewhat. The artillery heavy lists that I see tend to focus less on cannons and more on template weapons to handle the oh-so-abundant hordes.

I'm really interested to see how this goes for you! I'll be carrying on with my coven/MSU hybrid, but I have a tournament in March and a well painted dragon, so I'll be watching these matches closely ;)

My problem is there's so many types of lists I'd like to try, but only so many games to try them with.

I think the dragon list is going to be fun no matter what. Even if you lose, it'll still be worth it to see the look on your opponent's face when you plunk down a dragon in this edition.

Having said all of that, there is one other thing that should be considered a threat; Stone throwers in this edition are S9 base under the hole and do D6 wounds, so for all intents and purposes a direct hit from one of those puppies can be considered another cannonball. Bolt throwers too can pose a threat, albeit a much less severe one.

D

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 13, 2011 2:39 am 
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thelordcal wrote:
So when playing a list like this you really have two deployment phases.

1st being terrain, second your actual placing of troops. Remember that placing advantageous terrain, i usually focus obstacles in the center, placing some buildings in both deployment zones, is key in keeping your big nasty and support characters alive.


Normally we don't place terrain in this manner. I don't believe this is normally how it's done at the tournaments around here either but I'd have to check.

thelordcal wrote:
Questions:

Where's the mage hiding?


Mage is simply forced to go along with an infantry unit. Ideally he'd be going with Archers but I believe double Spears are better. In a lot of situations though I can simply run him on his own. I reckon that once combat is heavily initiated (i.e. both Spearblocks are committed) he isn't necessarily that useful anymore. Do you reckon this'll be a big problem?

thelordcal wrote:
What are you going to do about redirectors? There are a ton this edition; especially in some of our tougher matches. Right now i'd be worried about your spears/lions getting redirected while he systematically dissected the rest of the list.


It's hard to say on a general basis, but mainly if the opposing army isn't super-shooty I can afford to slow the advance and let for example the BSB + Dragon Princes be on chaff-clearing duty. Which armies in particular do you think pose the most annoying redirectors and how would they play? Does my list, in your opinion, contain the necessary counter-measures for these cases?

thelordcal wrote:
I agree with a lot of your decisions, High Magic is our best defensive lore. White Lions are superior than the rest our elite infantry when focusing on supporting our big bad dragons.


Initially I was unsure of whether going for more high-strength attacks would be better than taking Swordmasters for more volume. In the end though I believe their increased resistance to shooting is what tips it in their favour.

thelordcal wrote:
And play aggressive! Listen to some crazy speed metal or focus on how your opponent slapped yo momma that one time, anything to get you amped up. Second guessing and doubting has no place in a dragon list. I've found that people who play aggressive with Dragon lists tend to perform better than those who play a passive game. While that's not 100% provable, its something to consider.


Yeah this is kinda the reason I'm wanting to try out this list: be super-fast and get in your opponent's face by Turn 2.

thelordcal wrote:
good luck can't wait to hear some reports!


Thanks, will get them up as soon as I've got myself a Dragon etc. Unfortunately that might not be until after christmas due to exams etc.

@Brewmaster_D - thanks! I'm really enjoying yours as well, along with every other well-written army blog on this forum. Unfortunately real life means that every once in a while some of us are somewhat inactive (like I was this summer) but there's almost always something interesting to read here :)

I totally agree about the number of games available. It just makes me wish I'd be working now and not in uni so I could buy my own place with a gaming room - this would hugely increase the number of games I could/would be playing (rusty is in this situation and has a really nice room which gives him the ability to play so much more).

Lastly - stone throwers. Indeed, very powerful! Let's have a look at the armies which can field them:
- Warriors of Chaos
- Dwarfs
- Empire
- Tomb Kings (?)
- Orc and Goblins
I think that's about it? I haven't done the math but I'm fairly certain that the chance of ending up taking the big D6 wounds hit is less than 50%. Assuming I get first turn that means my flyers will all be facing only 1 turn of shooting threats. What's more though, if all cannons + stone throwers target my flyers, my infantry will arrive just about unharmed. Against said armies above, the infantry alone could really wreak havoc. Granted, an Empire or Dwarf list with dual-cannons and dual-stone throwers getting 1st turn could really be disastrous. I'd rather take this risk though (at least that's what I'm thinking now. What's that you say? 'Famous last words'? Never heard of ;)) than the multitude of weaknesses our more generic lists are facing. It's basically about going from 'how do I deal with you being all up in my face' to an approach more like 'bitch I'm here try and deal with me!'. I believe the latter suits me better, otherwise I could just play a static, shooty army (not my style of play).

As a sidenote, some of my best warhammergames have been in 40k, despite its lack of depth compared to fantasy, playing Tau against static shooting lists: being able to capitalize on force concentration and the movement phase is what I enjoy the most in this game. I suppose part of why this is my favourite is because it's the most reliable you can get in a game that's otherwise based on dice: no-one is going to dispel your movement anytime soon!

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 13, 2011 3:20 am 
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Cool list, I love trying to make dragons and odd things work. Brettonian trebuchets are especially deadly I played a combined brettonian/tomb king force at 2500 pts. The 2 trebuchets and a mass of archers were a bit difficult mind you he rolled godly and single handedly destroyed me as the tomb kings shot a few arrows, and lost all of their chariots. D6 wounds is devastating when he nails you . Yea I'd be very aggressive with this list, you have a cool flyer squadron . Things can go very south with a few good rolls of artillery so be prepared :mrgreen:

I think the one thing that will make the biggest difference for you, is to look at everything before your turn and play worst case scenario which is your dragon falling from under you (spell, artillery) and how you will recover from it, I managed to charge through the chariots to reach the fallen prince with my rag tag band of princes, or what was left of them. Damn trebuchets just ruined my day haha. So yea as long as you do worst case scenario plan b, I think you could be very effective .

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 13, 2011 5:02 am 
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I just remembered one more potentially devastating and quite common hard counter - the storm banner. It's at least one turn of no flying movement, so all those eagles are moving only 1 inch. Can't remember the base movement on the Dragon, but it puts a serious kink in your plans first turn.

Skaven also have a spell that produces similar results.

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