WHFB Mid-Range Cav in 8th Ed Fantasy. Still a viable choice? - Warhammer 40K Fantasy

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  1. #1
    Senior Member Squig69's Avatar
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    Mid-Range Cav in 8th Ed Fantasy. Still a viable choice?

    Hi LO
    So I wanted to start a conversation re Cavalry in 8th Ed Fantasy. Specifically to do with the mid-range cavalry units like Boar Boyz and Saurus Cold Ones.

    Cavalry with a 3+/4+ armour save have a hard job finding a role in 8th. They donít have the survive-ability of heavy cav with 1+/2+ saves but, when fully equipped with command, lances/spears, shields etc, are very expensive when compared to their light-cavalry counterparts. They have problems smashing through the ranks of the (now common) larger units and donít have the armour save to hold up against the 10+ return attacks that will be coming back at them.

    One option Iíve heard of is to use them as upgraded version of light cav, slightly more survivable and still cost effective when taken stripped down with no upgrades at all.

    This allows you to go hunting for war machines and flanking units with something that is more combat effective than, say Wolf Riders or Dark Riders. It will also allow effective attacks on small ten man support units (like Empire Detachments).

    On the down side, making these units cost effective makes them:

    a) Less survivable
    b) Easy to panic with shooting (and thus risk them fleeing through your own ranks and causing more panic)

    So how do people use mid-rank cav in 8th?

    Should we be hoarding them up into mega units? Or are they now novelty units only taken for fun.

    Enquiring minds wants to know J

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  3. #2
    Benevolent Dictator CaptainSarathai's Avatar
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    I've never been all that thrilled with medium cavalry in any edition, because as you said - they never offered anything that their lighter or heavier counterparts could. They felt like a sort of cop-out. If you could get medium cavalry with the Fast Cav rule, then they'd obviously be worth taking (I did this in my Nippon armybook), but GW won't give Fast Cav anything better than a 5+ save.

    Old school medium cavalry gave players the options of spreading their points out a bit and engaging multiple enemies that they didn't want to invest Heavy Cavalry into taking down. These days, Cavalry can't do much at all on it's own, and everything is relegated to flanking attacks or hunting warmachines. The Vanguard move for Fast Cav is almost necessary for hunting machines now that you have to get much closer to get a successful charge (16" charge with Cav is pretty risky). If you're flanking, your tactics probably prepare for it and you've got a nice Anvil lined up and want the best Hammer that money can buy.

    The new categories that I tend to break cavalry into are:
    Fast Cavalry - the obvious
    Super Cavalry - Blood Knights, Chaos Knights, Mournfangs, Bloodcrushers, Demigryphs, Bret Knight-train, Dragon Princes, these are all units who will vaporize anything in their path. A lot of them have been moved up to Monstrous Cavalry, which is still Cavalry but adds to the "Super" part of their descriptor. Note that a 2+ save isn't a requirement to be lumped into Super Cav, and not all 2+ save cavalry made the cut. The big qualifier for 'Super Cav' is - can the regiment solo an enemy unit and stay in place for at least 1 game turn? If you can charge an enemy in your turn and either run them down or still be in combat by your next turn, you qualify as Super Cav.
    Cavalry - everything else

    There are situations where regular Cavalry will make a better choice than Super Cav. This is largely dependent on the book though - for example, Marauder Cavalry with Light Armor and Shields isn't a valid substitute for Chaos Knights, and Black Knights aren't going to measure up to Blood Knights. The 'SC' units in that book are just so good, and that much more superior to their other options, that they are the definitive cavalry choices for any traditional cavalry role. However, in the High Elf book, Dragon Princes aren't that much better than Silver Helms, and while DPs can solo a unit, you need about 10 of them and no sane High Elf will field that many in a single regiment when he could get 20 Swordmasters or White Lions. So the DPs are usually relegated to flanking enemy regiments, and their extra attack and resistance isn't worth it then, so you're better off grabbing Silver Helms.

    So if you have a regiment of 'Medium Cavalry' and either have no Super Cavalry (be careful, some armies just aren't meant to have cav at all - like Beastmen), or your Heavy Cav is too expensive to be worthwhile, then yes, go ahead and field MidCav. Otherwise leave them on the shelf.
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  4. #3
    LO's unofficial Jester Visitor Q's Avatar
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    One of the problems which the Captain has already highlighted is that cavalry charges are kind of risky now because of random charge distance. Cavalry pays and has previously paid a huge premium on being able to get the charge in and now that advantage has been tempered somewhat. Therefore compunding the issues that mid-cavalry has always had is the added problem that you are now paying slightly over the odds.

    With super cavalry as the Captain calls it you can just about get away with this as a) you are always going to paying a lot of points anyway so efficiency is less important to results b) You can't really put a price tag on vaporising an opponents entire flank through a uber unit plowing through it.
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