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Hi all or should I say Hail all! I want to start with my first fantasy army and really do like the fluff of the bretonians.
I would just like to know if there is any shooty units that bretonians have that is worth playing, Iíve read on a few other threads that the peasant bowman arenít to bad, how about the field trebuchet? Is it any good in game terms?
I would like to build a competitive army but Iím also wary of building an army thatís going to be boring to play with. A one trick pony as they would say is not my idea of having fun.
I find the peasant bowmen easily earn their points back and then some. They provide you with a bit of utility the otherwise melee-centric army lacks. I have had the most success with them as a skirmished unit 15-20 strong, as it gives you a really flexible option to answer some of the major problems with the army as a whole. Some examples of these being:
Flyers/Scouts (Without the bowmen, these can prove to be a nightmare because you have to either ignore them entirely and suffer the consequences, or spend turn after turn realigning hoping they don't maneuver entirely out of your tiny charge arc. Since they tend to be lightly armored, the bowmen typically have no problem blasting them to death, even hitting on 6's or 7's.)
Night Goblin units (Nice to be able to blast the crap out of them without having to worry about setting off the fanatics. They're so easy to hit and kill that you can usually force them to panic with only one or two volleys.)
Fast Cavalry (Same as the flyers and scouts. The poor armor saves make these guys extremely vulnerable to a skirmishing unit of bowmen.)
Speed Bumps (One of the best ways for a melee-centric army to beat Bretonnians is to throw garbage units in front of their stuff, angled such that you'll either overrun and get flank charged, or stay put and eat a front charge. Either way you're not charging, which usually means you're not winning, either. Speed bumps tend to be low leadership and low armor, so you can again force them to panic pretty easily.)
The Trebuchet I really like, in theory. If you're good at guess ranging (I consider myself about average, perhaps slightly above average) then it can certainly earn its points back very rapidly. I seem to be cursed to having it fall apart more frequently than successfully fire, though. In my past five games, it's fired once, and ripped itself apart from misfiring on every single shot aside from that. It should go without saying that it's well worth the points against a well armored foe like dwarves, but if your scene doesn't have a lot of armor you're probably better off spending the points on more peasants.
In regards to one trick pony status, I've found the most successful way to win with Bretonnia is to avoid being a one trick pony anyway. The all melee army will dominate people who haven't seen it before, but as soon as they start figuring out how to position their trash units so your charges result in tears, you'll find you lose a lot more than you win. Introducing peasants, damsels, and even special characters can make the army a lot more resiliant, and surprisingly effective on fronts you wouldn't expect.
My 2000 point list looks a little something like this:
The Green Knight (an exceptionally effective special character, devastating to gun-line enemies that otherwise should pummel you, and wildly dangerous against everything else as well)
3 Paladins (General with a Lance, Shield, and Gromril Great Helm, BSB with War Banner and Virtue of Duty, and a paladin with the Virtue of Confidence, the Lance of Artois, and a shield)
1 Damsel (Helpful to give an important unit of knights magic resistance, but she's primarily a Dispel Scroll caddy. I equip her with two scrolls and have her ride with Grail Knights to keep them safe and discourage magic missiles.)
11 Knights of the Realm (full command, general rides with them)
9 Knights of the Realm (full command, Lance of Artois guy rides with them)
12 Knights Errant (full command, Errantry Banner)
16 Peasant Bowmen (skirmished, with a Villein)
5 Grail Knights (full command, damsel rides with them)
You can decide where you want the BSB to hang out. It can make any of those three knight units in to a lawnmower, or you can try to spread the wealth around a bit and cram a 4th knight unit in there. I like a large number of knights in my units to prevent panic from shooting. Bretonnian leadership kind of, well... sucks. A sometimes, failing a single panic can cost you hundreds of points on the spot as your unit turns tail and flees 13" off a table edge.
The other Bretonnian playing ninja pretty much got it. ;Y
All of our shooting units are grand, especially the skirmishing units. They're are a godsend, and always seem to out perform any expectations (probably because there is little expectation in the first place. They are peasants after all).
Our trebuchet is well...A warmachine. It is pretty much expected to do what a stone thrower will do. It is really nice for softening up units before the charge. Just be careful where your aiming, because it seems (at least for me) it floats into my knights more than their's...And, as with any warmachine, it is best to trebuchets in pairs, so in case you miss that vitally important shot, you have a second chance.
Bretonnians are in no way a boring army, just as long as you don't play all mounted. A varied list with Men-at-arms, bowmen, yeomen, and knights will keep you interested just as long as the next army.
Feel free to post an army list in the army list section, the resident experts will be glad to help you.8Y
thanks for the advice guys its appreciated;Y
Shooty ehm yeah the brets have 3 shooting units:
1 peasant bowmen (skrimishing)
2 mounted yeomen
So yes the brets have some shooting the big advantage is that it is really cheap to shoot an arrow compared to other archers. The trechebut is just a stonetrower not great but ok.
If your looking for a shooty army the brets will probably not satisfie you, their key remains in melee.
Bret's can be played as a one-trick-pony but this is boring and you will probably win the first few matches but then your opponents will adjust to it. (at least that happened to a friend using all cav) I like to use just as many peasant as knights giving a nice fluffy and tactical feel to it. And yes you don't have to make an all cav army just to be competitive, I can't count how many times my men at arms saved the battle. If you get the feel for warhammer tactically you will get to appreciate these guys!
Hope it helps, earn your land through brave deeds sir knight !
They make up their points quite well as a rule, but only against toughness 3 enemies (empire, elves, goblins etc). They will not wound enough against others to make them as effective.
Whittling down low armour/toughness units are their strongest ability
Thank you Sir Gingerninja...
I think my best bet would be now to gte my first army box and start playing a few smal games to get a better feel for the fantasy rules.