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Wanted to start playing my DE army again after a decent hiatus so i picked up the new DE codex and noticed one big change.
The manticore now has an uncontrollable tag on him.
Does this make him not worth fielding anymore? For a 200 point price tag it seems extremely risky.
The way i used him was basically as a disruptor and opportunistic attacker. Would use his huge movement+ flying to get behind war machines or in tightly packed group of units to abuse his terror as much as possible. Sometimes sending enemy units running straight towards my unit of executioners, or witch elves.
I dont see any recent lists touching a manticore anymore, is he just not worth the points? Pretty sure im going to drop him from my list unless im just missing something.
He is still has his uses for sure. With DE leadership it isn't as risky as it would be with Empire or even WoC who can take manticores. And if you succumb to uncontrollable it gives you frenzy at the beginning of the phase so you can still declare the charge that best fits the situation. And if you get uncontrallable mid-combat all the better for you. A lord on manticore is still rolling on a 10.
Yeah i did the math and everything, statisticly i would only have a 1/12 chance of rolling a failed leadership, and it would still charge.
Ill field him and give it a try, he absolutely wreaked havoc on low LD armies. Nothing more fun then plopping down right behind 2-3 enemy units and have them break right into the waiting blades of my witch elves or black guards.
The only real down side to a manticore is no saves. He can get shot to death an leave its rider high and dry. I usually put a master on it with 2x hand bows, to make use of the master's good BS and giving it something to do the turn it is setting up for a charge. It is also fun to put the ring of hotek on a manticore master and fly rigtht next to the opponents wizards.
I'd try Lifetaker, but as Nota said, the double handbows w/ BS 6 and ring of hotek is solid for a master on manticore. Enchanted shield or shield of ghrond may be good ideas as well.
statistically speaking, if you are using a DreadLord, then the Manticore does open up an extra hero slot so it is an increase in some manner. If you REALLY need those 3 hero character slots for something important, and lets face it, the DE can do a lot of damage with 3 hero-level Sorcerresses.
I've always thought a manticore may as well have a giant dart-board-style target painted on it for all the good it does...it attracts a lot of fire but it's not strong enough (like a War Hydra) to survive it. It's made even more attractive to the enemy ranged units and artilley because it's a large target and it generally has a scorceress or someone important atop it.
But if the Dreadlord/Manticore is making an flying attack and your army has a warhydra or two, they are going to have to pick their poison. Most armies wont have something that can stop both at the same time.
Any army that has both "a war hydra or two" and a manticore is probably in excess of 2500-3000 points, meaning the other army is also in excess of 2500-3000 points and thus will probably have enough magic/ranged units to spare a couple on both the manticore and the hydra/s.
In fact, I pointed up a list that had a black dragon, a manticore, 2 hydras, 3 units or RxB dark riders, and 4 units of cold one knights.... It was just under 2k. Taking it to 2250 gives the characters a magic item budget, and you can even fit some other units (probably disposable harpies and RxB warriors or RHB corsairs) The thing is dark elves can actually pull off the monster army, because their units and creatures are so cheap.
In fact, here is a nasty list that has 2 flying monsters and two hydras, that isn't unbalanced as you would think:
Dreadlord: full mundane, lance, ring of hotek, dragon ~ 506
Master: full mundane, lance, seal of ghrond ~ 324
20 Warriors: FC ~ 155
5 DR: RxB ~ 110
5 DR: RxB ~ 110
5 harpies ~55
5 CoKs ~ 135
14 Black guard: champ, banner, crimson death, banner of hag graef ~ 270
5 shades: GW ~ 90
assassin: Manbane rending stars ~ 145
war hydra ~ 175
war hydra ~ 175
total ~ 2250
It has 2 units of fast cav, a static res block, a great anvil/hammer, 2 flying and 2 skirmishing monsters (3 of which breath fire!) the shade unit with chariot killer assassin,a solid knight flanking unit, and even a throw away unit of harpies. Although it has rather poor magic defense, it still contains the ring of hotek (which is an issue any time someone wants to throw 3 dice) and 3 dispel dice.