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The Eldar, a filthy Xenos race that must be purged from the galaxy in the name of the Emperor, but that isn't always as easy as it sounds. Though their numbers be small their armies are fast and specialised. What is the best way to beat Eldar?
Eldar are easily one of the best armies in warhammer 40000 when played by an experienced player. From their hit and run tactics to having some of the toughest monsterous creatures in the game. If you aren't careful you can quickly find your units surrounded and cut off from support. So what units work well against Eldar? What Eldar units do you have trouble with? Do you hate holo-fields as much as I? What tactics work well against eldar? Can bikes and speeders beath them at their own game? Discuss.
The Emperor Protects
IG Best Gen 1st overall of 10 DE 4th overall of 6
Eldar 3rd Overall/Best General of 26--2nd Overall/Best General of 7--1st Overall/Best General of 11
The thing about Eldar is people think they're fast but flimsy. This is very untrue. A Wave Serpent is maybe the best transport point for point next to a Valkyrie/Vendetta. Against most Eldar, you're facing Serpents, the flimsy units are hidden inside them.
Of course, the army is still a scalpel, it cannot be played any other way and do well. You have to stop the speed, or their transports will fly around, picking your transports or units apart slowly and painfully as your options to slow them down get smaller and smaller.
I've found Outflankers and DS to be amazing against Eldar. Their back armor is always 10 and the Serpents special rules don't extend to back armor. A few Assault Cannons, Cyclones, or any medium strength gun in the back is adding up to success.
The other problem Marines have are their Heavies, mostly Wraithlords and Fire Prisms. They can both do huge damage to your army if you let them.
Prisms are an easy counter, all you need are medium strength guns to force the shaken/stun. Don't try to blow it up, just keep it from shooting. If it can't shoot, it's a glorified objective contester, that's great for you.
Wraithlords are different. Bolters can't hurt them, even Melta and Plasma wound on poor dice and it has 3 wounds. What you want to do is get 1-2 wounds on it, than charge with a Powerfist or two. They only get 2 attacks at WS4, it's an easy whiff. Once they're on deaths door, you'll bring it down in 1-2 assault phases for little loss. They only move 6" unlike Prisms as well, so don't jump all over them asap, get those transports down first.
Basically it's about getting them on the ground, where your units are superior. If you can get them grounded and counter the Heavies, you're in good shape. Of course that's a generalization but some helpful tips none the less.
I would make the case for taking a Librarian as your HQ. His Psy hood gives you a 45% save against the very powerful Eldar Psy powers. Doom, guide and fortune all make eladar units more deadly.
Imagine the look of disapointment when his bladestorm only get to hit 66% of the time rather than 89%. What about when the eldar fail to cast fortune on a seer council and you finally have a chance to do some damage to them. Throw in nullzone too and the librarian really makes a difference.
A final advantage is that eldar characters are T3 so the librarian force weapon will find it easy to wound opponents.
Quorn! - Protein for the Protein God.
Librarians are certainly a good deal versing Eldar for their psychic hoods. But be careful using psychic powers yourself if the Eldar use runes of warding. Too many times have I seen reports of librarians killing themselves with mass perils of the warp before ever managing to get a power off successfully. Storm shield librarians may stand a chance, but all the other have no or a bad invulnerable save and you won't ever reliably pass both the test and its re-roll...
Prince of Excess already mentioned deep-striking and I think it's worth emphasizing. Any kind of alpha-strike available can seriously cripple an Eldar army. Once you're on the board your possible moves are rather limited and your actions therefore predictable, with the Eldar using their speed and mobility to take you apart.
Cover is also very valuable against Eldar. We normally tend to be able to rely on our power armor, but I find that Eldar armies frequently enough field quite an amount of low-AP weaponry able to punch right through our angels of death.
Parking transports on objectives helps keep the Eldar from contesting because their units have to stay at least an inch away and then their skimmers don't get close enough.
Other than that any dakka helps. Lots and lots of shots, medium-strength is fine. Sternguard is perfect because they can pierce 4+ armor, they can ignore cover and pierce 5+ armor, and they can down a Wraithlord so very quickly. Eight man rapid-firing with hellfire does the job on average, got a squad of ten (or two of five) and you're on the safe side.
And for the question whether our speedy armor builds are better than theirs: I don't really think so because there's SO many nasty tricks with Eldar jetbike/skimmer armies. Everything can provide cover for each other and with the jetbike assault move and star engines and all that stuff there's so many evil things going on you don't even want to know...
BUT some speedy elements (like bike squads) do help against Eldar a lot. Countering their speed with speed of your own gives them something to worry about. And Eldar tanks are still very vulnerable in close combat, so they won't want you to catch them...
Psychic defense is a must, and Null Zone is oh so sweet against pointy ears.
Multi-shot, medium S weapons work best against Eldar vehicles, particularly autocannons. Dakka Preds, Typhoons, Cyclones, TLAC Dreads and Living Lightning do horrible things to them.
Eldar themselves are generally squishy, excluding Seer Councils. Flamers destroy them.
Wraithlords are slow and easy to pretty much ignore, TH/SS Termies trump. Wraithguard are insanely expensive and too short ranged to do anything useful, TH/SS Termies trump. TH/SS Termies trump a lot of Eldar thingies, so keep them handy and safe in their LRC.
Eldar are fast, don't divide your forces or Pod in. They can hold themselves in reserve and use that mobility to pick you apart quickly.
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the eldar player i usually play uses a a seer council on jet bikes (10) and a farseer. fortunes himself and dooms who he is charging. IMHO it is the most BullS*** thing ive seen in 40k. he wounds on 2 up with their weapons and even re rolls inv saves. also the warlocks have embolden so he re rolls his failed morale checks. i think thats embolden anyway might be the other. plus the rest of them use destructor b4 they assault. anyone have any ideas? i play BA
A moment of weakness spawns a life tme of heresy...
You have to torrent them or drown them in attacks and I mean DROWN them. If you run a Librarian, the Hood might work but it's not dependable.
They're only T4 so you just get them in Rapid Fire range and unload. The Warlock only have one wound and he has to allocate so it will do damage. If you can multi-charge, maybe two Assault Squads, that'll do it. They don't have power weapons, just easy wounds so be brave!
Deep striking shooty terminators behind them has been my best tool against them. Usually the banshees or harlequins are on the fore front of their assault and it'll take them too long to trek backwards to deal with the terminators so you get at least 2 turns to wreak havoc
obviously this doesn't always work but i've found it useful more than a few times
Last edited by Kelter Skelter; October 30th, 2009 at 19:35.
Ew you play against Eldar who uses foot Banshees and Harlequins? That's it's own tactica right there, make them list badly.....via hypnosis!
Basically once you get Eldar between a rock and a hard place, they lose their advantages. They'll have no where to go without exposing rear armor and than they're getting picked off one by one, which won't last long because Eldar is an elite army. Mobility isn't hard to take away once you've done it a few times and take a unit or two for that purpose, like Terminators.