Welcome to Librarium Online!
of HE's? What armies do they fair best against and to whom do they struggle?
Or does it completely depend on your choices in your own choices?
I am a brand new player still in the research stage of choosing which army I will play.
The HE's are high on my list along with a few other armies they all look good to me so now I must decide by what their tactics are how they fight, strengths weaknesses etc.
I've found them to be effective against any army I've played against so far, except maybe Demons. But then again, everyone will tell you that the new Demons book is like Mike Tyson beating up a class of kindergartners.
Nights Justice Space Marines
Eldar Eth Kariel Craftworld
Spear of Kurnous - High Elf Expeditionary Army
I've never had a problem with daemons playing with my TK. THen again my army breaks a lot of rules so... nevermind that. HE can get rocked by shooty lists, so watch out for Skaven and...TK lol.
0/0/0 Dark Eldar 0/0/0 Skaven0/0/0 Chaos Dwarfs
Starting on January 1st 2010
High Elves were the first list where we saw the introduction of the "power creep". People were scared about ASF, and thought that the rule was absolutely game-breaking. The next list out was VC, who were even bigger cheeses than the High Elves. Then came the Dark Elves, who were even MORE powerful than the Vampires. Then came Daemons. Daemons were suddenly the MOST powerful army that the game has seen to date. Following this were the Warriors and the Lizardmen. These two armies were more in line with the power of the High Elves. Hopefully, this is where GW has decided to draw the line, and all new armies will be written to that standard, rather than continuing on this horrible power curve.
That being said- High Elves are still a great army. Remember, they were at the start of the creep, so against many of the older armies, they are quite effective. Against WoC and LM, they're a fair fight, and we are actually one of the best armies to take to the field against Dark Elves. However, against Vampires and Daemons, we can struggle. Vampires are usually not difficult to knock down if you know what you're doing, but Daemons just rock through everybody if they're built for cheese.
The HighElves strength is the eliteness of the army. We have interchangeable 15pt or 30pt Special Units, who all fill their roles very nicely, albeit a bit single-mindedly. The High Elves also get an extra Special and Rare choice in their armies, and need to take one less Core choice. This means that the High Elves can become an army of almost entirely Elite troops. 'Always Strikes First' is also a small strength of the list. When the list was released, it was very powerful, but now there are enough ways to neutralize ASF that it's not as big a deal as it once was.
Our weakness is that our entire army is only T3 and S3-4. We also have paper armor, with the best save that any of our infantry have is a 5+. This makes our armies very fragile, and BOWS can actually wreak havoc in our lines. So yes, shooting is a problem. Our low strength also means that anything with good armor and high toughness (Dwarves, Warriors of Chaos) can wade through us with little effort. However, we do have ASF Great-weapons to mitigate this, giving us S5/6 troops where we need them.
That sums it up really. The High Elves are a capable army, and well respected. They do take a while to learn how to use, but they're a mastery army. There are several existing builds which you will be exposed to, that are easy to learn. Over time however, you can learn the real ins-and-outs of the army and make them work how you want them to. They're not a Gunline or 'Blood n Guts' army, and they're not as forgiving as Daemons or Vampires, but they will make you a better player by leagues. I started with the HE, and I still go back to them whenever I want to get a great game in with someone.
From my experience I think the biggest problem for High Elves is trying to come up with a list to take on all-comers rather than a list tailored to fighting a specific army.
If you need high strength attacks to get through higher armour saves you can put in White Lions instead of Sword Masters, or if you need to be cutting a bloody swathe through bog standard rank and file then Sword Masters are the way to go.
Where we struggle is with our Core troops as frankly they're overpriced even when you take ASF into account. If you're fielding blocks of Spears or Sea Guard and expect to be using them as combat units then they really need a hero in them as S3 attacks just won't do anything much against T4 enemy (especially if they've got a half decent armour save) and it can be a struggle against T3. Don't be fooled by being able to fight in 3 ranks with spears - in my experience you may do a couple of extra hits and another wound but that'll be saved by most enemies.
The other problem is with our cavalry. As they're only S3 if they don't break the enemy on the charge, where their attacks are S5, they're going to be struggling to stick around in combat in following turns. Again, they really need a character in them if you expect them to be fighting in combats lasting more than one round and you can pretty much forget frontal charges except against smaller units where you can be sure of beating their static CR even if you don't kill anyone.
I think, High elves are one of the most balanced armies in the game. Yes they are vulnerable to shooting but you can invest little in shooting and magic and still be powerful in both phases. For example 2 L2s and the banner of sorcery, and 20 archers and 2 rbts (and maybe reavers/ shadow warriors) are cheap and surprisingly effective ranged phases. They also accomplish 2 points that the rest of the army struggles: heavy armour (knights and such) and shooting. So in the first two turns the vulnerable units utilize cover/ other units while your shooting and magic take out the opponents shooting (and possibly magic).
The other great strength of the army are the elite infantry and dragon princes, there are very few units that can take these units on one on one and you have enough cheap redirecters that you can force these mismatched fights. And if you don't have a mismatch in your favor, you can always flee . With movement 5, white lions, ellyrion banner, eagles, and effective chariots/ cavalry High elves are fast enough to outmaneuver almost any opponent.
HE suffer against Vampire counts the most I believe because swordmasters are the only unit likely to melt a unit in quick fashion (maybe DPs and a chariot) but fear can ruin your plans very quickly. I believe they do well against Demons because they can shoot well and consistently fight well especially in one on one combats. They are even or a little against most other armies other than dark elves who are at the top of the elf food chain and Ogre Kingdoms (trust me).
I like HE and think they are a fun army and a pretty good beginner army.
2009 Tourny records (W-L-D) (20-4-4):
9/56, 1/12, 2/14, 4/14, 32/82, 1/6, 16/72
I started with TKs and I bought my HEs within a few months. They are just such a fun army.
They can be tailored for speed, shooting, magic and they can roll out some serious glass hammers if you want to play that style.
I've rolled out cavalry lists with chariots and dragon princes, magic lists with and without Teclis, lists with Dragons, infantry armies, elite armies, shooting armies with RBTs out the wazoo, fast armies with Reavers, Shadow Warriors and Eagles... You get the idea.
An all-comers list is a bit tricky, but really we can compete in almost any phase. Having said that, we have middling armour at best and T3 means we die in droves to concentrated shooting or magic.
I have not lost a game with my HEs yet, against Daemons, Orcs, Lizards and DEs. Our group is all new players though, so take this with a grain of salt. If your strategy and tactics are good, ASF is the answer to almost anything your opponent can bring out.
From an opponents perspective HE's strength and weakness is the same thing. Your Specials are amazing and you can take a lot of them. The problem is that your Specials are amazing and you can take a lot of them. This leaves your core troops as overpriced and under performing afterthoughts. In most armies Specials/Core work together but in an HE army it is Specials and Specials that work together and the Core sits on the sideline cheering.
The only honorable options left to we combatants is seppuku or semantics...which amount to the same thing really.
Next to my almost unbreakable unit of PG with the general at the centre of my lines proudly stands two full units of spearmen, and as long as you realise that everything in the army (except SM) needs support, they can form an integral part of the line rather than being an after thought or sideline.
Of course, archers and seaguard suck for their respective points, so we do get the short end a bit in core, but what can you do.