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Some friends and I started warhammer a half year ago. They chose Dwarves and Wood Elves and I went for Dark Elves. Now after 10 various battles, it seems as if I am getting the upper hand in almost every game. So far I have won 9/10, the last being a draw against dwarves, where I miscasted 4 times in a 1000 point battle (!!!). Out of the 9 victories I have gained 7 massacres. 6 of those the enemy was completely vanquished by the end of the game, and 3 of those before the start of turn five.
We have about the same tactical experience. Are Dark Elves simply to strong?? Perhaps I am better at tactics than they are, but not by that kind of a margin. Here are some points:
Hatred is devastating. It seems gamebreaking with 135 points of CoKs or a hydra being able to grind through an entire enemy flank. I nearly always win close combat and often break the opponent in the first round. Every close combat unit in the DE army goes from good to terrifying with this abelity!
175 points? Are you serious??? There is no combat this beast cant handle, and it moves through terrain with no penalties!!!
PENDANT OF KHAELETH:
I run a master w ha, sh, sdc, dark steed, pok, sword of might. I use him to absorb shooting and take out archers. He is unkillable, and always makes a huge impression.
COLD ONE KNIGHTS
These knights are simply terrifying. I run two units of minimum size with no command, and with hatred they massacre nearly everything on the charge.
Chillwind made my wood elf friend stop using glade guards at all. bladewind kills dwarf warmashine crews on a single cast. Black horrow removes entire regiments.
These beasts made me stop using dark riders at all. Against wood elves and dwarves they are an absolute menace to the opponent.
You only need one or two good battles with an assassin, to make your opponents crumble in fear at the sight of a spearmen or shade unit. The psycological effect is so great!
If you get lucky, two of these regiments can remove entire regiments for you. Far more efficient than RBTs.
Rarely do they budge, and they are so good at absorbing attention and shooting.
Impressive shooting and combat abelity - even for their high cost!
The not so impressive
REPEATER BOLT THROWERS
I used them three times. Every time a warhydra would have been vastly better. With only two crew, these warmashines get shot down easely.
Got shot down. Every time. Harpies were far better against my opponents.
... apart from that every other DE unit I used seemed to make a huge impact.
DE seems to have a massive advantage over dwarves and wood elves. Its to bad really, since my friends are loosing their motivation.
Dark Elves: Massacres: 14, Solid Victories: 2, Minor Victories: 0, Draws: 2, Minor Defeats: 0, Solid Defeats: 0, Massacred: 0
Dark Elves are currently one of the top 3 armies in warhammer. Used well, they really stand a good chance of taking down nearly any army (Daemons and Vampires being the other part of the triangle).
What you've said is what other players have reported - undercosted hydra, impressive performance of shades etc.
Wood Elves and Dwarfs are fairly old now, which is part of the reason they'll be struggling. I'd suggest that your opponents get to their respective internet forums and see what they can find out (Not being sure what they're using, after all).
Having an army and not owning a rulebook is like owning a car with no steering wheel.Originally Posted by amishcellphone
Dark riders perform better against armies that don't have much shooting of their own. They are fast cav, so the the fact that they get shot to pieces means they are fulfilling one of their main tasks.
The hydra is under priced, GW made it that way to sell more models of it. If it were 50 points more (which is still cheap for what it does) it would be a close call between it and the throwers. The throwers do still have a use, mostly at taking out armor and monsters. They are also great counter battery units.
Spear Warriors aren't really that strong, it is more a issue that you haven't played vs any good CC units like saurus w/spears or chaos warriors. That being said they are a pretty good unit for its cost.
Crossbow men are one of those things that depends greatly on what your opponent is fielding. VS Chaos they are not the greatest. VS normal T3 5+ blocks they are superb.
CoKs are pretty good, and it's good to see you don't waste points on command. If you want to try another unit with about the same killing power, try the chariot. It really just depends on the list which one is better.
My opponents usually don't have much trouble dealing with harpies. They don't usually run things that are good targets for them either. I don't often play with them since they don't do as much for me. It is one of the meta game things.
Assassins are pretty good, just remember to switch load outs to keep them guessing from game to game.
Shades really don't have that high of a cost for their unit type and ability. 5 at the cost of 80 points is a very good war machine/archer hunting unit. Add in the assassin and you have a very cheap and nasty surprise turn 1.
One of things I had to learn with DE is to tone down what I take in friendly games. Just because the toys are there doesn't mean you have to play with them every game. Wood elves and dwarfs are not new player friendly in the slightest, and have difficult matchups vs DE. So in the interest of fair play and sportmanship I suggest not taking the best options every game. Also research what their armies can do well and see if you can't suggest changes they can make. Some diplomacy might be required to avoid hurt feelings. Of course throwing a game is about as insulting as can be, so avoid that.
My dwarven opponent always fields at least one flaming bolt thrower and an organ gun, and he has engineers with the bolt throwers and uses master engineers frequently. My master and harpies take out most warmashines by turn 2 though, and thats when my hydra moves out from its hiding. I always change my list drastically around to keep him choosing ineffectively, and that is perhaps the biggest advantage I have over him. Dwarves are a one-trick pony - Dark Elves are not!
My wood elf opponent frequently uses a treeman, but I somehow always end up running it down with some pathetic regiment like spearmen. Maybe he has been unlucky, but lds8 stubborn seems to fail alot. Also the hydra holds advantage over the treeman since they hardly cause any damage to each other in close combat and the hydra outnumbers 7-6. Actually the hydra havent faced anything in the entire wood elf list it couldnt beat. The last battle it flamed 7 wardancers, killed 10 dryads and a branchwraith and went on to hold his treeman for 3 turns of combat.
CoKs: Just this evening we played an allied game (500p DE and 500p WE against 1500p dwarves). My two units of CoKs failed THREE stupidety tests by turn 4(we had to stop by then, because it was getting to late).
One caused both the CoKs and their harpy screen to loose a turn, another nicely presented their flank to a regiment of longbeards and the last caused the other CoKs to flop a vital charge. Even in this horrible game my CoKs still killed an organ gun with a thane, totally worth more than 300 points, and kept enemy heavy regiments worth more than 600 points from moving, since they couldnt help the rest of their army without presenting their flank to the CoKs.
And this was a game where I failed 1/3 of my stupidety tests rather than 1/6! In another game my two units of CoKs didnt fail their tests, and they slaughtered the entire enemy force on their own before the start of turn 5. NO models left on the table! My hydra or shades were not even fast enough to get into the battle!
CoKs are absolutely terrifying - stupidety or not! Just run them with no command in groups of 5, costing 135 points. If they do fail that vital stupidity test and get run down, you loose 135 points. So what? In other games they earn you 500.
RbTs: Well, we randomize shooting hits, yes, but even a unit of dwarven crossbowmen can take out the crew of a bolt thrower in a couple of turns, not to talk about grudge throwers! And what can the rbts kill? Nothing much. wood elves are all skirmishers with no armour and some even forest spirits. Dwarves are too cheap and tough.
We considered switching armies, but we feel its a bit early before we have even gotten to know our own armies. The dwarf player has decided to build a second army of orcs and goblins - yeah you guessed right: Out of boredom! :-) I play alot of different lists, and I doubt that I need more variety in my army. I have by far the most changing lists of us three. I always try to build strong lists though, and would never bother for corsairs and witch elves, neither for executioners. The first two are simply to bad, and the executioners are just not as good as the black guard, shades or cold one knights.
Dark Elves: Massacres: 14, Solid Victories: 2, Minor Victories: 0, Draws: 2, Minor Defeats: 0, Solid Defeats: 0, Massacred: 0
Don't let criticism of CoKs make you not run them, they are still fine units. I will agree the reason why they do so well for you is how bad the opponents you are facing are against heavy cavalry. You could hit them just about any 3+ or better knight and they would have problems. It also sounds like your opponents don't know how to deploy against cavalry, and how to set up counter charges.
You shoot the units who would shoot at your bolt throwers first. Counter battery is priority 1. Other archers have very little armor, certainly not enough to have a save at -2. Against skirmishers all shooting is diminished. Doesn't mean you don't shoot, it just means that when they die they cost more than rank and file would. A 100 point unit that either kills its value or absorbs its value in shooting is a worthwhile inclusion. Being a target is a valuable role. If your opponent is shooting his thunderers or bows at your RBT then your knights and foot units are not being shot.
That being said, against newer players, or against slow armies, the hydra is a better option. It is a harder choice against more mobile armies, or against armies that have harder hitting units.
It makes me sad that your rate witches as low as you do. Sure they have a number of not easily solved problems. Being frenzied, t3 and no armor. But if you can get them to work, they are downright nasty. My current opponents either gives that side of the board a wide clearance, or accepts whatever they send over there is going to die. 3 poison attacks per model with hatred is very good for 10 points each. (I also give them the banner of murder, for fluff reason as well as AP being good when you spam that many attacks) They are easier to use in a cauldron list, since they can get a ward save against shooting, or killing blow in combat.
I will however agree that corsairs suck, and executioners don't fit any role that DE need filled. S6? CoKS or heroes. Slow low armor elite unit? BG are better. Killing blow? witches with a cauldron are better. Against a large number of opponents a 5+ is the same as not even having armor.
Well, then it sounds like your opponents haven't caught on to the game mechanics as quickly as you have. They definately are at a disadvantage armybook wise as you mentioned. DE are a great army. Most of the newer armies have cheaper, more effective units. DE excel at this with BG, DR, Harpies, shades, magic items, etc. Both Dwarves and WE are the last of the oldest 5 books and may not even get redone before the new set of 8th ed. rules. Their units will be more expensive and less effective. Plain and simple. WE can be tricky to learn how to play. if he is playing a treeman at low point games, he's going to have even less of a forgiving time. One bad move and he'll lose the game.
Dwarves are dwarves (boring in my opinion) and while the O&G have some great things in them, they don't really stand up to DE, so he's not going to do any better with them.
Ive played DE for a little bit now and yes they are pretty OP, but with the right stratagey that can be almost unbeatable..
But what i think is happening is that DE is just TOO good for lower point games because of our cheap, awsome .... HYDRA!! Wait to you play 2k point then it gets a bit tricky'r'
Anyway im thinking of getting a dwarf army coz there not so flimsy and wont break as much and i love dwarfs , any idea how much it will cost to get 1500 points worth of dwarves ?
Dark Elves W/D/L/ 11-3-3
Dwarfs W/D/L 0/1/2
Last game: Dwarfs - Draw
Being 30 mintues drive away from both nearest GWs, I play a lot of the same: Dwarves and High Elves (and Orcs & Goblins, but they have and will never win).
I agree with nearly everything you've said, but, Dark Riders became more useful the more games I played. I was sceptical (4+ save, T3, expensive targets?) but eventually they have become veteran skirmishers in my army, many of them surviving several consecutive battles.
Pandant of Khaeleth is a bit useless in the big scheme of things, though. I generally don't take it: if I do, that's generally one hero who has virtually no attack for 200+ points.
Buckeroo, Hydras are great, and even if they don't hit the lines they terrify the opponents (ecspecially Goblin, about two thirds of all units affected scarper) and absorb one turns' projectiles. You need the T5 model, anyway, considering all the remaining units are T3. COKs may be more effective against Dwarves than normal (although those stubborn buggers mean you need at least eight to quickly break the lines) but they are equally useful against good cavalry like silver helm.
Last edited by Attila the Hun Jr; November 1st, 2009 at 01:56.
Worshipper of Dice
Last game: Victory Dark Elves vs High Elves & Orcs & Goblins
WDL: Dark Elves:37/6/8 Space Marines:7/3/3
1000 point games are bad.
With half of the army books not even written for this edition, you will see all kinds of lopsided victories. Assasins at 1000 points? You better win.
Bump up the point cap and you will see different games.
At the 2000 point threshhold you will see a change in performance in both Dwarf and WoodElf games.