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~We all know and love our scroll caddies, for 140 pts of anti-spells, but in a smaller point game which would be better: A Mage lvl 1 with two Dispel Scrolls, or a Mage lvl with Annulian Crystal?
~The scrolls guarantee that you knock off two spells, and the mage gives you a total of three dispel dice.
~On the other hand the crystal will give you a total of four dispel dice and knock off one of your opponents power dice.
~If you have just one mage to gain some sort of magic resistance, which would it be?
It's dependent on what else you're using, and what point level you're talking about. I'll assume you're considering this for an all-comer's list... obviously you'd much rather have Crystal against TK, but vs Tzeentch or Slaanesh, you really should be taking Scrolls.
As a general rule, you want to avoid being outnumbered 2:1 in PD : DD. If you're better than 2:1, you're probably ok, if you're worse, you pretty much need scrolls. In games under 2k, you don't need to worry about lord-level casters, and it's unlikely your opponent will have more than 5 to 8 PD. That makes Crystal significantly better. But once you get to 2k, and likely above 8 PD, you really can't rely on only having 4 DD as your only defense, and that's where Scrolls are better.
Also, having a slow-moving infantry defensive group is more inclined towards turn 4-6, so you need to have long term magic defense. Contrastingly, having a highly mobile, quick-moving cavalry-based list wants to grab control of the game early, and if it gets to turn 4 without the HE player in a dominating position, they are likely to lose anyway. Here strong early magic defense is imperative. Therefore, if you have the slower list, Crystal is better; for the fast list, Scrolls are more important.
What ga is saying is really true, though I think I would use the crystal in smaller points games. It's fewer PD to stop and it's decreased even further by the crystal. Also the mages levels will be lower and thus it's less chance you're facing critical spells you must stop at all costs. If you DO face a such spell, you use up all your dispel dice and your opponent won't have another.
Looks like I'm leaning more and more over to the crystal
5000p. High Elves