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The Dire Avenger Exarchs are the only practitioners of the psyker powers of the Warlocks among the various Aspect Warriors. Though all Aspects utilise some level of psychic powers, be it simple level intents and gestures to intense psychical control over the physical dimension, the Dire Avengers present the most direct form of psychic manifestation that is invoked in the theatre of war. As a Dire Avenger travels along his particular Aspect Shrine of the myriad Path of the Warrior, at some point along the Path after having attained sufficient mastery in the arts of war, he will involve himself partly with the Path of the Seer, though more heavily focussed on the former. He practices the battle psyker powers of the Warlocks, the more direct and warlike of the two aspects of the Path of the Seer, honing and harnessing the latent psychic ability within him. Thus do the Dire Avengers join the Path of the Warrior with the Path of the Seer. Within the doctrines established by Asurmen in his Treatises of War, he remarks the perfect warrior is the "Mind Warrior", one who has achieved union in mind, body and spirit, turning his mind into as much a weapon as his body and perfectly matching both to the height of his limits, in battle the strengths of one dimension fluidly complementing the strengths of the other, achieving all that is possible within his combat capacity , thus reaching his utmost potential in the Path of the Warrior, this perfection being readily perceived in all facets of his life and even in his mien. As the Dire Avengers are the singular Aspect that most closely replicate the teachings of Asurmen when he founded the original, modern Eldar warhost that all the future Warrior Aspects would be based on, the Exarchs adhere to his teachings to the strongest degree possible, and upon attaining a certain point of maturity in their physical growth, turn their attentions instead to the arts of the mind, training their mental faculties to render their destructive impulses in battle. Some with the raw talent for the gift of the psyker go to such extents as to study under the tutelage of the august Farseers, accumulating vast amounts of knowledge in regards to the methods of the Seers. Upon learning these mental focussing techniques, those truly and rarely gifted Exarchs are able to draw on the power of the Warp to the extent that they manifest even the runic powers of the Farseers in battle. These rare individuals are called War Princes.
The Dire Avenger Exarch may purchase one Warlock Psychic Power.
Treatise of War: "History of the Dire Avenger"
The Dire Avengers evolved out of the first warriors gathered by Asurmen from the fleeing refugees right after the Fall, aboard the Craftworld "Fiery Rebirth". Forged out of desperate times, the Shrine still retains much of its grimness, its warriors renowned for their unyielding determination against the odds.
Asurmen, in order to rally an effective and dedicated fighting force, during dark times when their very survival was at stake, from a destitute and beaten people with no skill and experience in the ways of war, devised first to instill discipline in them. Asurmen trained them in a fashion that responded best to the nature of the dangers and situations faced in those desperate times, which in most cases were against a numerically superior foe, the warriors being a mere handful of the surviving Eldar race after the Fall. As such, Asurmen's underlying philosophy was a defensive one, of which the modern Eldar army draws its origins from, retaining and maintaining many of the original doctrines in their fighting form as a defensive, fast response force. Each of the first warriors were trained directly in the theatre of battle, and as such evolved in a way that adapted to the myriad challenges faced, and had to learn to be flexible enough to fulfill any particular tactical role. The fluid movement of such a tactically flexible force would require a high level of discipline, to be able to take up cues and respond readily, and adapt with changing situations against an ever-shifting battlefield. The Dire Avengers of today maintain this need for discipline, a vestigial remain of their past. It is this discipline that enables them to face off against a numerically superior foe without breaking, to advance against incoming fire without falter.
Asurmen had various tactics to coerce an otherwise reluctant people. Most of them were converts on the knife, forced to take up arms on face certain obliteration. Recruits were never conscripted but were always willing participants in the affair. They were inducted through a Pledge of Blood, through a recitation of the Creed of the Noble Warrior, which decreed that the warrior was forged out of necessity and duty bound as the necessity dictates, deviating or otherwise would bear consequences too great and mark them a failure to their people, in their dire hour of need.
The first warriors were all standardly equipped, a result as much of constraint resources as tactical doctrine. Having a level of unformity throughout, the gun most suitable for a troop that requires tactical flexibility in range and assault meant that the preferable weapon was the Shuriken Catapult, or Shuriken Gan in the Eldar tongue. This weapon was already of invention, albeit in a less advanced form. It is from this tradition that the Phoenix Catapult, the improved version of the Shuriken Catapult, became the definitive weapon of the Dire Avengers. This earliest incarnation of the Dire Avenger was expected to perform with equal skill in assaults and firefights, given that they were the only type of soldier that existed in the early history of the Eldar army and thus had to deal with all manner of battlefield situations, a doctrine very much encouraged with the adopted primary weapon of the first warriors.
Among the Eldar, the Dire Avenger has become synonymous with the definitive warrior, encompassing all the virtues of the Noble Warrior, the ideal model template aspired to by those on the Path, thus being the cornerstone of the modern Eldar army and the standard followed by the Warrior Aspects of Khaine. Among all the Aspects, the Dire Avengers are the strictest adherents to the philosophies and doctrines of Asurmen, a warrior celebrated among the Eldar for his legendary leadership and knowledge, and for being one of the greatest tactician and commander the Eldar have ever known, often accredited for being the founder of the first Eldar army. Much of his insights and philosophies form the basis of the evolution of the current Eldar army.
Foremost among the virtues of the Noble Warrior is the legendary stubbornness against the foe of the Eldar, an unyielding pride that leads to a resolute defence. It is this virtue that has earned them special recognition among equals, as the Armour of the Eldar, forged within the heat of battle, of tried and tempered devotion. They are reminiscent of ages past, of the glory of ancient days, created in the hopes of one day linking past and present. To them is the Undying Fire, the light in the darkness that illuminates the path to the salvation of their race. To the Eldar they represent the Light in the Darkness, the Noble Warrior's devotion to his people. To them lies the responsibility of Avenger, the one that upholds, the one that Destroys in order to Restore.
"The Undying Fire":
Dire Avengers are immune to Fear, and treat Terror as Fear.
"The Light in the Darkness":
Should a Dire Avenger troop be able to force an enemy unit to Fall Back from their Shooting, any Eldar troop within 12" of that enemy unit may make an immediate 6" Move directly towards the fleeing enemy unit, that can be combined with Fleet of Foot.
There are no fear and terror tests in 40k. Quick question - are you more of a fantasy player as most of your rules fit with fantasy, but are different in theme to 40k rules.
I first started off with Fantasy, but switched to 40k which iI much prefer. Incidentally, the first armybook I bought and wanted to play is the High Elves of 5th or 6th Edition.
For Fear and Terror Tests, I have the rules here:
Fear: Should a unit fear another unit, whenever the unit is Charged by that unit, it has to pass a Leadership Test with a -1 modifier to its Leadership value or Fall Back immediately. Should the unit attempt to Charge the unit it Fears, it has to pass a Leadership Test with a -1 modifier, failing which it becomes Pinned. Should it fail a Leadership Test with a -1 modifier and then become engaged with that Fear-causing unit, it suffers from -1WS and -1I. Should the unit win one round of Combat against the Fear-causing unit, the unit no longer Fears it, and regains its statistics.
Terror: Should a unit be terrorised by another unit, whenever the unit is Charged by that unit, it has to pass a Leadership Test with a -2 modifier to its Leadership value or Fall Back immediately. Should the unit attempt to Charge the unit it Fears, it has to pass a Leadership Test with a -2 modifier, failing which it becomes Pinned. Should it fail a Leadership Test with a -2 modifier and then become engaged with that Terror-causing unit, then it suffers from -2WS and -2I. Units that cause Fear suffer from Fear instead of Terror against a Terror-causing unit. Should the unit win one round of Combat against the Terror-causing unit, the unit is no longer Terrorised by it, and regains its statistics.
Facing: The facing of a unit is determined by the direction it last fired at in the Shooting Phase. Modify the positions of the models accordingly after every Shot. In the enemy's Turn, the facing of a unit is determined by the direction from which an enemy unit Shoots that unit.