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I spent the evening today at my FLGS and busted out my HE/WoC/DE/LM/and Dwarf infantry to test out where each of the infantry blocks stand. I was both pleasantly (and unpleasantly) surprised as to what I found.
My purpose was first and foremost to see where my Saurus and Chaos Warriors stand with real dice rolls and not math hammer. So here are my Saurus findings.
1. Saurus Warriors-
So how do they stack?
- Saurus Warriors don't benefit from supporting attacks when compared to single attack models. We must now keep 3 ranks alive to maximize attacks.
- Augmenting magic to support Saurus Warriors was far more benefical than Hexing the opponent (unless you hex your opponents str), especially in extended combats.
- Hw/Shield is now viable, as exchanging 6 attacks for a 4+ As and 6+ ward that only relies on 2 ranks to attack is attractive.
- Saurus still do better when charged if using spears.
- You have to use spears if you have them so if you want the ward then don't waste the 1 pt per model.
Saurus Warriors when taken in 24-30 blocks will almost always get their 25 attacks (at FC) back at the opponent in the first round of combat. They are reliable as always, and Cold Blooded is more useful than ever. It means Saurus are reliable marchers when the enemy is close and gives them the ability to sustain the turns when the dice really hurt in CC. Toughness is slightly more prevalent an attribute due to the sheer amount of shots that can be produced. This will depend on the meta-game at your local tournaments though. Saurus can get to combat, take a hit, and dish it back. Same as always.
Saurus kick the crap out of nearly any toughness 3 assuming SoA doesn't override the RAW for SM's and WL's.
Saurus outlast Blackguard. This is mainly due to the 20 model cap for BG. After 2 rounds the BG lose attacks. The first round of combat was a minor loss for the Saurus in all test and a big loss when I charged with spears.
Saurus Warriors get backhanded when facing Chaos Warriors. I used a 20 man Chaos Warrior block for comparison. They get rocked by Tzeentch Hw/Shield the most assuming they get a 5+ ward. The Khorne w/ Hw/shield and AHW were not as devasting on the combat resolution, but assuming you hold, they chew threw pretty fast.
LM have the highest probability to augment troops and hex their enemies more than any other army. I wanted to leave magic out of the CC test, but the combination of a Slaan, Focus Mystery and Rumination is devastating and Lore of Beast, w/ or without a character on a cold one, is painful.
Saurus Warriors exceeded my expectations. I didn't initially take Cold Blooded into account which makes Saurus Warriors that much better. Saurus Warriors can lose a fight, stick, and grind down the enemy. They do this role better than any other core unit. If you include the probability of magic then augmented Saurus are a devastating encounter.
If you have any questions I'll be glad to answer them or run tests/scenarions to find it.
So would you recommend if taking 2+ units of Saurus Warriors to have one unit with sword/shield (for charging) and another with spears (for taking charges)? Or was it not particularly worth it? I ask because I have a unit with spears, and will likely want another unit soon and it's looking to be like it should be sword/shield.
It will be up to preference in the end and both will be viable. If you want, a 18 Saurus block can be done with Hw/Shield as you only need 2 ranks to get your attacks in.
I'm a fan of 24 Saurus blocks. 24 can go both ways, but spears will have the edge. The 6+ ward that parry gives is nice, but 6 attacks is a trade off I'd almost always take.
If you decide to go higher than that then I would recommend spears entirely as they can last multiple rounds, dice gods willing, and keep their attacks to match for 3 rounds or more in most cases.
The army specific erratas that come out will hopefully show some additional benefit of having supporting attacks AND multiple attack profiles. After all, we do pay the points for it. And High Elf spearmen atm get equal amount of attacks for cheaper along with their other benefits (rerolls, high initiative, WS 4, smaller bases). Having a smaller base size in 8th has a distinct advantage as well so hopefully things get sorted out.
Thou shalt remember:
Warhammer Fantasy armies do NOT have Codices. They have Army Books.
LINK - Guitarists of LO Group
True. Time will only tell. In my mind a Horde of Spearmen will smash a lot, but its a glass cannon like every other HE. I'm excited just to see what tournament lists will bring to the table.
yeah, the thing keeping HE from being a glass fodder is the part where they get to asf. but since in the new edition that doesnt mean they cant be hit back.... thats what gives me a headache with the WE.
What I would like to see is how a skink block (without and with kroxigor) would hold up against a unit goblins/ skaven with the same point cost (like 200pts for both). Because the skinks are our way to a horde army So I think those will see more light of day.
at 5 pts for a S2, T2, WS2 skinks are still overpriced as a raw combat unit. They probably suffer the worst across all infantry in 8th edition because of toughness 2 and striking back. If you ran Lore of Beast again, they could perform a bit better, but you may as well run saurus if your going to do that.
they are s3 then you buy a large 10x4 unit with 3 kroxigors and have a skink chief bsb with skavenpelt banner. and then cast the basic beasts spell to give them all +1s and t. that gives you 24 s4 skink attacks and 12 s7 krozigor attacks. also they are t3 for extra durability and get to re-roll all of my leadership tests.
I think spear wielding saurus in units of 24+ and hand weapon warrirors in units of 18 will be the norm. In order to meet the minimum core requirements, you will be seeing lots of saurus warriors on the board.
I am right 94% of the time, why worry about the other 3%.
my skinks will just be taking LOTS of kroxigors! :p