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So I have only recently started playing fantasy (having come over from 40k) and have settled on Empire. So in the couple of games I have played (at around 1000 points) I have been using an all Cavalry list, using a General on Barded Warhorse, a pair of lvl 2 Battle Wizards on Barded Warhorse and as many Knights as I can get my hands on, because I just love my cavalry.
But I wanted to ask before I go up to 2000, are Cavalry Heavy lists viable? I was going to get a few war machines (most likely 2 cannons and a Helblaster Rocket Battery) and some Archers/Handgunners/Crossbowmen so I had a bit of ranged firepower that Isn't completely reliant on Magic.
Thanks for any help.
Well.. My personal experience with 8th is that cavalry has gotten alittle bit weaker (as everything else seems to have been getting a boost), so i wouldnt recommend an all out cavalry-based army. That being said, i dont really have any specific experience with ALOT of cavalry.. perhaps if you went for some outriders/pistoliers to give your knights a better time, it just might work.
They can work, maybe, sometimes, but they did take a big hit in effectiveness in the new edition. The biggest thing is that it now takes two ranks of five for them to strip an enemy of their rank bonus, and the second biggest thing is that it's easier for the enemy to reform and deny them a flank charge. So now you need at least two units of at least ten knights to ensure that you get a flank charge (one facing the front and one facing the flank, so reforming doesn't help them). The upside, of course, is that the knights get to attack in two ranks, just like infantry, so if you do get simultaneous frontal and flank charges off against a unit, assuming you're using lances (most people insist that you only use great weapons in 8th edition, which presents a modeling challenge for a cav-pure army!), that's twenty plus lances hitting an enemy unit that has no rank bonus. Except that you're still not going to break them because they'll be steadfast. And that's throwing 500 points worth of knights against one enemy infantry unit that probably cost 200 points.
Pure cav doesn't work in 8th. The requirement to take larger units in order to strip rank bonus is tough, but workable, but it's virtually impossible for cav ro remove steadfast from main line infantry blocks.
You HAVE TO have a large block of infantry of your own in the combat to have enough ranks to make the enemy non-steadfast. The role of flanking knights is to strip rank bonus and provide those 10+ lance attacks for massive casualties. But as long as the enemy's steadfast, neither the rank bonus nor the casualties matter much.
IG since 1999 __ DA since 2002 __ Tau since 2005 __ SoB since 2007
Brets 1997-1999 __ TK since 2009 __ Empire since 2010
Another tactic I have been toying with is the "lance" formation.
Given that you get supporting attacks from the second rank, its possible to run Empire Knights in a 3 wide, 2 deep formation, and get all 6 of your lance attacks. This has the effect of being able to manuveour through much smaller spaces than normal. Sure - you can't strip ranks, but putting 6 attacks in can help a lot, especially when you put 2 of these units into one combat. 2 of these units with no command is almost the same as running 1 unit of 10.
The careful application of terror is a form of communication in itself - Zutta Law #4.