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This is my first list 2000+ points, so far I only played 1500
All comments are welcome.
Level 2, Ring of Fury, Silver Wand
Level 2, Barded Steed, Seerstaff of Saphery, Dispel Scroll
Level 2, Barded Steed, Annulian Crystal
Dragon Princes x 5
Dragon Princes x 5
Sword Masters x 7
Sword Masters x 7
Spearelves x 20
+Standard (I know it can be lost, but well...)
Speraelves x 20
Power Dice: 2+2+2+2
Dispel: 4+1from enemy
I am not sure about taking small units of SMs. They work nice in small games, I am not sure about big ones.
My second best was to take:
Level 4, Jewel of the Dusk, Talisman of Saphery (in base contact enemy magic weapons don't work), Folariath's Robe (can only be hit by magic attacks).
instead of two mages, but I couldn't take the Annulian Crystal, that would be a big disadvantage for my magic defence. The combo looks good, but it woudn't work against deamons and all ranged magic attacks, from the other hand if he would alone charge a powerfull hero he could disable him for the rest of the game
I do have a couple of quick questions for you to do with the outlay of your army:
1) Are the mages going in the Dragon Prince units?
2) What are you using the Dragon Mage for? Flank Harrassment? Magical superiority? Close combat?
I am not personally sure about sticking the mages in those flanking Dragon Prince units. For the sake of centering your army, I would consider leaving them in the Spearmen units, even if they remain on their steeds. This will provide them with a bit more protection from shooting and magic.
I like that layout of Archmage, and have used it myself vs Daemons. The Biggest problem is that he can't be out on his own. If he is, combat resolution will cause him to run, so he will be killed that way instead. You could however put him in a unit.
Personally, I would test this list first, then if the Dragon proves ineffective, I would change him for the archmage and get yourself a boost to unit numbers, perhaps an extra great eagle for warmachine hunting.
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If you can, bring in the ring of fury and the ring of corin into the army, these are very powerful ways of bringing out dispel dice, especially as they are not one-use-only...
That way you can either bait your opponent's army with using up dispel dice early, or use them after they have exhausted their pools on units with items such as the ring of hotek or Balefire. Just a question if anyone knows - if drain magic is cast - does the casting value of bound spells also increase?
No- becuase that would be beneficial to the enemy and I'm pretty sure that GW isn't that stupid. I think that bounds remain the same. If you are really curious, ask the Tomb King players, as they nearly screamed when they saw that spell. They thought that it meant that they couldn't cast bounds with a powerlevel LESS than the spell... hehehe, that'd have been nice.
Back to this army list:
You have units of 5 DPs. Why? try bumping to 6, it just works better in the long run. Don't put the mages in there- DPs fight and die, and can be used to hit the absolute hardest enemy units. Things that you don't want to have around Mages.
Why do you have a musician with your Swordmasters and Dragon Princes? The +1 to rally? Are you really preparing to fail? Give them standard bearers. +1 combat resolution might keep them from breaking and being run down in the first place. Your Leadership is high enough that you'll rally all by yourselves.
1 Great Eagle is a liability. If you had two, you could probably expect one to get across the field. With just one, the only flyer they have to worry about is that Dragon Mage. I'd knock off the eagle, or add an eagle. You have enough magic to neutralise warmachines.
You are treating your army's magic like it is defensive only. The Dragon Mage is too expensive to be a defensive asset. He's just a level 2. On the back of that dragon, he's a target and i've rarely had DMs survive the game. They are good for early magic support, before the armies close you can use him to draw out alot of dispell dice, then cast with your other mages and use your last dice to put Flaming Sword on him and charge him into combat like a giant flapping chariot.
If you want to be defensive, drop the Dragon Mage and put in an archmage and stick a staff of sorcery on him and give somebody high magic. That's +2 to your dispell attempts, army wide. Otherwise, leave the DM in there and get a Banner of Sorcery in that list somewhere, for the extra powerdice. People will be very afraid of all that casting power.
Small units of Swordmasters are at a disadvantage in this size game, because they are weak against shooting, and only really viable as flankers. I'd switch them to White Lions. That's going to make them better as flankers, because they won't ever have to worry about terrain, and it'll make them more resilient to shooting before the lines close.
Sorry if that seemed harsh, I just wanted to get all of that down on to paper quickly. The army as you have it would be pretty good, but there are things that can be done to milk a little more performance out of it. Kind of like looking at a fast car and knowing that a few more bolts will make it faster.