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I don't know if this is worth its own thread, but I was wondering if taking Grail Knights in Lance Formation is worth it? Because In other places I have read, it says run them in a frontage of six, this would ruin the rank bonus from 3x2.
The next being, that I'm new to Brets and I was wondering (should there not be another thread already) if all you veteran Bretonnian players could throw out tips, tricks, and combos to help get me started.
Cheers! And thanks in advance,
I thought grail knights could not take lances. I know the questing ones can't.
If a Million Guardsmen die, that's a statistic. If one marine dies, that's a tragedy.
1. Its wrong. Grail knights can (and must) take lances. Its the questing knights who can't, and have great weapons instead.
2. The question of the original poster was not if they could take lances but if they should be deployed in lance formation.
If you ask me I would deploy them in lance formation. You sacrifice 2 attacks (which could miss or fail to wound) for one definate rank, and after you charge you may increase frontage if you're opponent doesn't flee (assuming you win combat of course)
so imo you should use lance formation on the grail knights.
--Famous last words of Asmodean
Ok, there are pros and cons to both. Not only with the lance formation do you lose the 2 attacks of your knights, and bear in mind this only counts if they get the charge (if you are good then you should most of the time get the charge). If the enemy charges you however only three of your knights can fight back and thats only if you don't take any casualties! This actually makes the grail knight lance quite vulnerable to the charge.
it does also have the narrower front and wider flank. this makes you easier for enemies to get a flanking charge on you. again I am talking things not going to plan here, but you should also remember your grail knights are one of the scariest things on the table as far as your opponent is concerned, and will try his best to outnumber and out manouver you to get this. Bear in mind if this happens you also lose that +1 bonus for the rank, but will instead have two models in combat instead of the line of 6 only having 1.
There is another reason to think of the lance as a disadvantage. This is the point I made about having a narrower front. Your knights can only see what is in front of them, on a 45 degree angle arc from the edges of the unit. (look at pictures in the rulebook if you can't understand what I am saying) Now the 6 wide unit is twice the width of the lance. This actually means your field of vision to the front is much wider, so you are more likely to be able to get that charge off and makes it harder to be out manouvered
Ok, so that sounds a lot like I am badmouthing one of the best things about bretonnians. There are advantages too. firstly, that plus 1 combat resolution is a big thing! As was has been fairly obvious from what I have said, getting charged is not good for your grails. One big tactic used by the enemy is to use one unit to take your charge and then counter attack into your flank or rear in their turn, or subsequent turns. The way to get round this is to do as much as you can to break the enemy! That extra rank bonus is handy for that. I like the idea of having a point of the combat res in the bank before combat starts, your enemy will be relying on his to try to beat your knights!
Also, bear in mind with your added movement, your hard hitting power, and being savvy and cunning you should be doing your best to make sure you get the charge and not them, so my early points occur more rarely in a game. Also, (I am hoping I am remembering the rules for wheels correctly here) but you measure the movement for a wheel by pinning one corner at the front, and measuring the move of the other to get the turn you want. This basically means, the narrower the front of the unit, the less movement it uses to wheel, making the big lance a little easier to manouver and get into place for that flank charge.
However, . what I have done so far has been to consider the direct advantages of a line over a lance or vice versa as a solo unit, where as I would like to bring in a couple of points of it being a part of your army. Ok, 6 grail knights are a tough unit, but they are not superheroes. The savvy duke you are(I do like that word today) only wants to get into combats that are stacked in your favour. So consider the option of having your grail knights charging one flank or the front, and a big 9 man unit of cheap knights errant hitting the other at the same time.
the 9 man unit is always better in a lance for many reasons that I don't think this was really about so I wont go into it. This unit also gives us 2+ rank bonus, our banner bonus (you may think about not taking a banner for the grails as its so expensive) which is for less points than our grails, and since these bonuses are only applied once, and rank bonuses don't stack, the small flanking grail unit is better as a line to get the extra attacks.
The other thing I would say, is your grail knights are again a big scary unit. This makes the enemy do annoying and inconvienient things like cast magic spells at them. On to some more bretonnian special rules, and lets bring in a damsel here. if you save on points and don't take your knight that isn't going to fight in your lance, you can replace him with a damsel. now she won't be able to cast much from here due to a lack of line of sight, but she is pretty well protected, can't be seen to be targeted, and comes with Magic resistance 1 for some added extra protection. This is a great place for a scroll caddy damsel, and if you deduct the points for that extra knight she seems reasonably cheap points wise.
This essentially leads me to my key point with this topic. I don't recommend a unit of 6 grail knights. They are actually slightly too wide in a line and difficult to manouver at this side and also you might not also get enough frontage of the enemy to get the unit in combat(think you can fit two lances in the front of a unit, to ur lines one, forgot to say this earlier)
In a lance the arrangement of 5 and a damsel is actually a lot better, and removes some of the drawbacks of the lance, that 6th expensive space filler!
I will add some other thoughts. Think of my example of my flanking unit. Consider a unit of 3 or 4 knights. this unit is pretty cheap considering, and not big enough for the enemy to consider it too much of a threat, but in the flanking situation it really is good. You get that hard hitting unit, a lot of attacks for something small, and the added manouverablity of being smaller fronted. I would take 4 knights, this means you can still take 1 casualty and still be above US5 which is handy. Also think of this unit for those nasty vampirey etherial things that can clog up some of your heavy hitting lances. These guys have magic attacks so are pretty handy for taking these things out.
On the whole, grail knights are a brilliant edition to the bretonnian army, but one I think gets misused a lot. If you want a super hard hitting big unit of knights thats gonna plow through any other unit on the field, then Yes, you can make this out of grails. Units of 9 are possible, but you pay the price in points costs. Even a unit of 6 can waste the space of a man. I am a fan of the school of not putting all your eggs in one basket, and don't like grails used this way. However smaller units often confuse the enemy. The biggest I would ever take is a unit of 5 with a damsel to help protect the weakness, and this I would have in a lance formation. However consider the smaller unit of Grails... its main drawback is that it uses up a rare slot, but then if you are going to have a big unit of grails your not going to be able to afford a lot of points elsewhere.
Anyway, I hope this is helpful, feel like I have typed on for long enough now. Tryed to be balanced and fair, so hope this helps answer your question.. (though am not sure I remember this now!!)