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Was wondering if anyone out their uses assassins anymore. I know that i've found it hard to make the room to fit one in since 8th came out and he can no longer kill the front rank, but he can still make a nice charcter killer.
I never liked them before and now even less.
In my area the standard template for armies is:
Level 4 wizard
level 1 wizard
And thats about it for characters other than empire/dwarf engineers with the big guns.
Fighting characters are rare and those wizards and the BSB rarely leave the deployment zone.
I've used the odd assassin in 8th, especially vs. a tricky WoC opponent who likes to use the shield that negates magic weapons. The truth is, he's way too squishy for me...and for all the roles I can imagine him fulfilling...we have much better options. You can build a decent master on foot for about 136 pts that's way more survivable and being survivable means he'll end up killing more enemies in the end. The assasin is a bit of a suicide character in 8th...hopefully, the next book will bring them back cause I have such fond memories of them in 7th ed.
I tend to field my Assassin's out of nostalgia more than anything as they're not as useful as they used to be.
Saying that though, I took 5 Shades with 2 hand weapons and an Assassin with Rending Stars/Manbane in a game against WoC just 2 days ago. I lost (I made one mistake, which was to support the charge of my Executioners with a unit of 35 Mindrazor-ed Spearmen: The Exe's killed 8 and lost 7, the Spearmen kiled 3 and lost 15, thus losing the combat. The Exe's on their own would've done it: 8 kills, banner, rank, charge, high ground vs 7 kills banner and 2 ranks. Warriors would have lost Frenzy and my Exe's would've happily sat there) but the Assassin and the Shades bagged a Shaggoth then (I'd lost at this point) charged into 18 Marauders of Khorne. I even gave them a +1A buff from the Cauldron (my Exe's were fleeing). The Assassin killed 4, then the Shades killed the remaining 14. Then the Assassin even took a wound off his Disked 3+ ward BSB with stand-and-shoot.
Also notable was one of my many Rune of Khaine/Touch of Death Assassins who ended up facing Eltharion on Stormwing. 1 attack on Eltharion and 6 on Stormwing, resulting in KB on Eltharion and Stormwing dying due to me rolling lots of 6's to wound (I know, not KB, just 4 6's to wound), with Eltharion fluffing his attacks leaving the Assassin free to run into a shocked and surprised Archer unit nearby (so shocked they didn't get a single hit with stand-and-shoot). He had a good game (revealed in WE unit after they charged Seaguard, broke and fled after they all died due to bad rolling, rallied, charged by Eltharion, charged into Archer unit that got too close, killed and ran them down).
Assassins are not great in a competitive list it has to be said. However, in a fun/nostalgiac list they always have a place (which means pretty much all my lists).
They really have become just a one-hit wonder, but, if you get an insane amount of jammy luck and just love them enough to take them, they can be worth the investment.
Also, my assassins are generally around the 150pt mark-ish, usually just 2 hand weapons, Rune of Khaine/Touch of Death or Manbane/Rending Stars (every time I take the Venom Sword that Assassin's unit seems to die before it reaches combat....).
Fantasy - Dark Elves, Warriors of Chaos \/ 40K - Word BearersChaos Space Marines
Vargarna i Vinterkylan Chaos Warriors Army Project
In my high mobility MSU lists, where I basically pretend I'm 7th edition wood elves, I run two assassins with rending stars only, and plop them in my two shade units. They take pot shots and things, and cause just enough harm to be annoying enough for people to turn and face them. All the while I'm merrily throwing spells and using other attrition fire until its hydi and hymlich's turn to join the fray. Works better than it should, probably says something about how irritating I am. This list also makes ample use of dark riders and harpies.