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I was browsing through the rules of the new OnG army book today and something occured to me. If this topic has been approached before pardon me for making a new post on it, but I went back 3 pages and could find nada on it.
For just 1 more point, Forest Goblin Spider Riders seem REALLY nice compared to Goblin Wolf Riders (an old favorite of mine). In fact I've only seen 1 O/G player still using them since the new rules came out (well, actually, he uses both).
Now I still understand how the Wolf Riders have their uses... after all 2 inches of extra movement really adds up especially on more open battlefields on a direct charge or when flanking really wide... and technically they can stack light armor with shield for a better armor save (but only if they cease being fast cav which to me seems like a bad trade and they cease being cheaper point wise)...
but overall it just seems like they are both Core, both share the same cost for unit upgrades like musician etc, yet for a mere extra point to get spiders you gain...
a better base weapon set up (mounted spear),
a mount with better combat stats (poison and I4, and the lower Ld shouldn't matter since they're a basic troop mount and the goblins leadership on either unit is equal),
and the WallCrawler rule which to me seems like it would easily overnegate the 2 inch movement loss on most boards using 25% of more terrain on the playing field.
both are unit size 5+, both take up a core spot, both have no limit on the number of units that can be fielded in your army...
So is there something I'm missing when one plays them in practice that doesn't appear on paper? Or are spiders really just for an extra point just nicer like they look on paper? I always liked my Goblin Wolf Rider models, but if they're underpowered they won't be the first unit I'll retire till next edition for a newer more tactical choice (wow, saying that I can see why this might be a smart buisness move on GW's part too!).
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Both units have advantages and disadvantages, and it's worthwhile taking both if you can or if you want to. I don't think it's a simple matter of a straight choice between them, as they have subtly different battlefield roles.
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If I had to pick only one unit of fast cavalry I'd go with WRs, due to their speed. But a scenario is usually 72" wide, with several forests and other stuff. This means that in those areas SRs will perform greatly, since most enemies will have to walk around forests. They need line of sight in order to charge, but if you place 1 of them outside the forest and the rest of the unit inside it you can declare a charge.
I usually play 5+5 SRs and 5+5 WRs, together with 2\3 units of 8 squig hoppers.
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Wolf riders FTW. I usually take a unit of 10x and pair it up with a Wolf Chariot. I don't bother with bows, I us ethem for combat. Throw a Goblin Boss in there and you have a nasty, and decently cheap, powerful unit.
Speed is everything. It helps break up an opponent's strategy and put a nice hole in a battle line.
Spider Riders are kool too. In bigger games, I use them to flank units hugging cover. They are tougher to use, but can be just as nasty.
personally i'd rather pick spider riders because i LOVE the poison attacks and the wall crawling special abilities. plus i play an entire night gobbo army so that just might sway my decision
the only downside i see is that you have to have LoS to charge which would f@#& wall crawling.
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They both cost the same points when used in the correct (well, at least my favourite) set-up.
Bow + Spear + Musician on each unit (generally in units of 5, but spam them becuase they are core and cost 76 points). Spiders come with spears but wolf riders are a point cheaper base.
They each have their strengths in different areas. Obviously the movement of wolf riders is awesome but spiders can still be quick (over terrain).
In combat they are pretty matched. Strength 4 on the charge for riders isn't bad and the mounts aren't too naff either (higher WS than rider). Obviously the poison attacks helps out a bit but really they are the same in combat. Their save is the same but wolf riders can sacrifice fast cavalry for a 4+ save (they have light armour)
Since they cost the same (although wolf riders can have the cheapest set up with 60 points for a unit of 5 with nothing) they SHOULD be virtually the same in their usefullness.
Now you should really use both in ANY games. I took 3 units of these guys in my last 500 point game (I think 2 wolf and 1 spider) and they won the game for me (along with my shaman who cast gork's warpath 3 times!). As a single unit they don't work. Use two and tick them on either flank of the enemy's unit. They can't escape a flank/rear charge in that way, and with these guys I have never lost a fight (just pick your fights carefully and make sure you always have a flank/rear.
Overall they are pretty equal, altough if i had to chose i say wolves, but thats a personal thing and i don't quite know why. Anyway, im going for 10 units of these guys in a 2000 point game.
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I like both of them equally, they both have their own uses. In tourneys, or where you have no control over terrain, Wolf Riders are better, 'cos of the extra speed, but if you can place terrain where you want it, Spider Riders are superior. I run Spiders mostly just as they can move at full speed through forests to hit those *insert annoying Scout unit here (eg. Shades, Waywatchers...)*.
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I always saw spider riders as being slightly more combat orientated (with the poison on the mount) and wolf riders being better "fast cav" (redirecting charges, harrassing warmachines/flanks for a distance). I'm not sure I would call one better than the other though its just what you want to use them for.
I like the spiders. The poison attacks and the like are great, the models look sick, and they are amazing in terrain heavy maps.
I like to run them up the flank of the army, shooting off arrows the whole way, and then getting behind the enemy unloading arrows into the rear. then, once my boyz get into combat I shut my opponent down with a slam into the rear.
on an unrelated note, squig herds are ridiculous. get 50 of them.