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So, after playing a game against the Eldar with a pal's borrowed army, I got completly routed. Using a portal, they were able to concentrate their army against a single flank, destroy it, and run up my line, destroying my troops as they go. With the Dark Reapers and their launchers, they destroyed my troops. With Bright lances, they took out my armour. With D-Cannons and Starcannons, my Elites and other troops could not get their armou saves. With his large Farseer and Warlock Squads, he Guided his various weapons to ensure they always hit. How does one fight against such a force?
When I have more time (currently in school) I'll type up a guide for how to beat the new eldar.
From the sound of it you were playing by the old rules and the only thing that beat you is your inexperience against them.
D-cannons. Only 2 guardians holding it, hit them with a single heavy bolter and the D-cannon comes down. Just shoot the damn things.
Starcannons are only Heavy 2 in the new rules and mostly BS3 so don't worry about them. They will never make their points back since they usually cost 50 odd points.
Bright Lances-not as good as a lascannon, just let them shoot your armour and accept you're goign to lsoe some vehicles.
Dark Reapers, under the old rules you just shoot them with heavy bolters or assault cannons. Under the new rules with their improved save you're going to struggle a bit more. Krak missiles are a good thing for taking them out.
Farseer and mass warlocks are still quite weak in close combat. Bolters can still take them out. Just ignore them usually and let them hammer on the power armour doing nil damage.
It looks like you didn't have a lot of experience vs eldar and he managed to take you out with high firepower. His army is VERY fragile and a few good bolters will see them running off the board. Just shoot the right targets.
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Indeed, I am inexperienced, and it was the old rules. Next time he said he could very well have his new codex.
I think you are also falling prey to a common space marine blunder. You have too little mobility. I myself do it and it is something to always consider especialy against eldar. If you dont have an assualt squad or a land speeder (tornado) you should consider getting one. These will be able to fly around and kill a lot of guys.
If you build a man a fire he will be warm for a night. If you set a man on fire he will be warm the rest of his life.
OK cross your legs for about a week and the new Eldar codex is out, no more USF=no more portals
However, that asside you will still have problems, Eldar are commonly tooled to take down marines, and they are good at it, but they are by no means unbeatable.
Stuff that works:
loads of troops
Libraians with psychic hoods
Stuff that doesnt work:
Moody that I wouldnt bother with:
Elites and Assault troops
Everything you have been told is a lie!
A Librarian with Psychic Hood is great, you may stop less than half the powers, but take Fortune away from a Seer Council for a turn and you can really put the Bolter in, although there are notable exceptions Eldar are usualy toting either 4+ or worse armour or cover saves, Heavy Bolters and Whirlwinds are good. As they wound on a 2+ you'll be getting a plethora of wounds which they will fail.
4 ML v's Dark Reapers nets you 2.2' kills
4 Heavy Bolters v's the same nets you 2.2' kills
However, the Dark Reapers will probably be using cover, reducing the kills from ML but not Heavy Bolters. If you want to take on the Reapers it's imperative you have cover.
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What I have found works wonders are:
LST's - They have an incredible amount of firepower on their chassis, you just have to be careful to stay about 24" away. As most Eldar weapons are fairly short ranged this keeps you out of range of most counter-fire.
Whirlwinds - First it fires indirectly, you can hit anything within 4 feet of it. Second it uses the large blast template. It's quite likely to hit *something* with a template that large. Third, it's AP4, if it hits any infantry most of the time the infantry will die with no saving through. There are exceptions but they are few. Plus it pins which causes all kinds of issues.
Drop pods - Eldar are fast, most of the time they are faster then you are. This is one way to help even things up. You can drop in right next to them and unleash a hail of bolter fire into them from close range.
And finally, interestingly enough, FLAMERS. Get a squad of marines, put them in a drop pod, give one of them a flamer. If you drop next to a squad of guardians/aspect warriors you will cause all kinds of carnage. You'll generate a massive number of hits since most Eldar are only T3. Aspects may get a saving throw but you'll still kill half of them. Guardians are screwed. If you hit them they die, and they can be fortuned to a far-thee-well, flamers negate cover saves. Most Eldar wisely stay in cover, and have fortune on their main units, flamers strip that away for a measly 6 points. Get a dreadnought in a drop pod with a heavy flamer and he'll kill just about every infantry type they can field on a 2+, cover or no.
I've dropped several flamer equipped squads on my friend's Eldar army and wiped out 60%+ of his army in one round. Either from casualties or running away.
May your aim be true, and your targets plentiful.
Okay, so after reading this and thinking on my own, Ive come up with some ideas. Infiltrate my squads w/ heavy bolters. Have a Librarian take FoTA, since it does not need LoS, he could sit behind cover and possibly pin the whole unit before it can drop a portal. Bikes, with their Invulnerable save for moving 18" or more, could get to the unit in a hurry, and attach an attack bike with a hvy bolter. Maybe even requistion an Inquisitor and take a Vindicare, he could target the portal carrier and pick him off fairly easily. Take a Whirlwind (or two) and bombard the crap outta him.
...wow just the very subject ive been looking for. Recently i played my drop pod army vs Eldar for the first time and got my butt handed to me. I consider the losss a good learning experiance. I learned that taking flamers instead of the plasma guns would have been a wiser choice. The concern i have is how to deal with their wraithlords. My opponent ran 2 of them and they really did a number on my army. His consisted of alot of banshees a tank 2 transports and the 2 wraithlords.His starcannons were beating up my dreads so I tried to land close and deal with the WL's but my bolters and meltas failed to kill the things. After that his banshees were all over me.
I did learn to try to deal with his army in smaller portions instead of being too conservative and landing far away..since they move so fast hence taking away my ability to rapid fire.
Wraithlords are nasty customers. Most people will drop them with heavy weapons and that works. I've used Lascannons, Krak Missiles, Assault Cannons, Powerfists, and scout sniper rifles to drop them. However in view of the list you mentioned, they aren't primary targets, they will be painful but ignore them. Starcannons vs armor isn't a really large concern, he'll need 6's to glance, and a 6 to blow it up. Make your dread Venerable and he'll shrug off most damage. Starcannons vs your infantry is another matter. Stay in cover!
Wave Serpents are the primary target, especially if they usually have banshees in them. Once they are down kill or rattle the Falcon, the wraithlords should then be engaged with the anti-vehicle weapons while the banshees are hit with anti-personnel weapons. I'm not sure what point battle you take but it sounds about 1500 or so.
May your aim be true, and your targets plentiful.