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This is a request/ invitation for help in writing rules for eldar exodites: the wild, dragon-riding inhabitants of the maiden worlds, cousins of the craftworld eldar. They featured in the 2nd edition codex, where dragon knights - the standard riders - were featured as a unit, but no miniatures were produced and they were swiftly dropped.
Working on the basis that the only thing cooler than an eldar is an eldar on a dinosaur, I'm interested in creating rules for three or four types of exodite.
1) Warriors. These would be the equivalent of guardians, and very similarly equipped. Although they might not have access to the bigger support weapons, they might have the option to infiltrate and include hunting beasts in the manner of Kroot mercenary units with Kroothounds.
2) Dragon Knights. Eldar riding small hunting dinosaurs - think Velociraptor from Jurassic Park. The traditional armament is the laser lance, like Shining Spears. I have no idea what the stats for the mounts should be: my gut feeling is that they should be fleet of foot, should move through cover easily and should have an S4 attack on the charge. Their thick hide may raise the riders' armour, too. Variant units could include mounted scouts and heavier-armed riders.
3) Megadons. Huge creatures somewhere between brontosaurs and wingless dragons. Exodites would mount guns in howdahs on their backs. They would be monsterous creatures with multiple wounds, and might play a little like feral ork squiggoths or tyranid carnifexes.
I'd be very interested if anyone else would like to contribute or assess any rules I come up with. I should point out that I've seen several codexes on the net - all of them are impressive, especially Agis Neugebauer's, but I'm interested in doing this from scratch. Thanks in advance,
I would suggest using the Saimm-Haim Eldar rules and use the dragon knights as jetbikes. You could use a Vyper (I think thats the name) heavy army and model all of your eldar riding on pterodactles from WHFB lizardmen. I would say give em starcannons and count the starcannons as being shot from their mouths. Then have the eldar on top with a shurikan catipult. This is a great idea if you dont play alot of GT since it is actualy a legal army.
Several things. Check out http://www.freewebs.com/exocodex/index.htm for a good start.
Or, pick up a second edition codex and you have the rules there.
Both of these would be the best starting places, rather than trying to start fresh, as they've both been tested, one being official.
16,000+ of Eldar (only need flyers)
7,000+ of Nids (want heirophant)
6,000+ of Space Marines (need rever titan)
4,400+ of Cygnar (all models for the faction)
1,500+ of Legion (just started)
First up, thanks for your suggestions. Both are very good, I think. I agree that I could use the Saim-Han rules, but I feel it's a bit odd to have a dragon giving no bonuses to close combat while being equipped with two shuriken catapults. I've considered it before, but I'd prefer to be creative and make up my own rules, more out of personal preference than any sensible reason.
As regards the link you provided, thanks very much. That's an interesting army list. One thing that consistently bothers me with exodite lists is the reluctance to include "normal" eldar weapons. My 2nd edition codex specifically states that the exodites have access to eldar technology, but live in a different style, which to me says that they'd be able to get hold of shuriken catapults without difficulty (although perhaps at a higher points cost). It would also get rid of the necessity of inventing a new gun that isn't too much like a modified lasgun or bolter. The John Blanche picture in the 2nd ed seems to support this, but then John Blanche is an odd character anyhow.
However, I do like the exodite-online vision of a Heavy Support monster. I thought perhaps cheaper monsters (120 pts and less, perhaps?) could be taken as an elite choice, giving the option of a godzilla-style army and more variety. You should be able to alter their crew's weapons as well as giving them tusks, scything tails etc to mimic real dinosaur types (a la carnifexes).
At the moment, I'm thinking that "Exodite" would be a variant on the standard CWE list, much like Alaitoc or Ulthwe. Certain units (grav-tanks, walkers, support batteries, jetbikes, vipers and fancier aspects) would be disallowed and replaced by a selection of dragons as well as (perhaps) pathfinders.
I'll go back to the 2nd ed and try to put up some rules for a standard dragon. Just a quick question: am I allowed to post stats for things I've made up, if they're fairly similar to (but not identical to) existing units? After all, a dragonrider is probably going to be a lot like a guardian on a dragon. Cheers again.
Apparently Exodites do have Wave Serpents just limited facilities to produce them.
However I have this lovely image of a Fire Prismâ€™s weapon on the back of a Lizardman Steggadon with Dinosaur riding Eldar Knights swarming around it.
Don't fall into the trap of making them primative compared to humans, Exodites have forsaken high tech luxuary in favour of protection from Slaanesh. If anything they're probably more advanced than the known types of Eldar, since their seers saw the Fall coming and were able to prepare in advance.
Personally I see the Dragon Knights as dinosaur mounted Aspect Warriors and posessing a level of skill similar to Warhammer Dark Elves and their Cold One Knights. Others will point out that Biel Tann protects the Exodites and use that as an argument for Craftworlds (Biel Tann especially) having greater milliary power.
Okay I'll stop while I'm still able to, good luck with your project.
Definately add rangers to the mix.. I know they aren't technically exodites, but good friends are hard to come by outside the craftworlds, so I can see them teaming up with exodites, if nothing else just for mutual survival.
I also like the idea of mounted snipers, a little like the kroot mercenary cavalry units. They could combine the mobility of cavalry with the ability to then stop and take long range pot shots at big enemy units. I have no specific fluff source for such a thing, but it seems quite well suited for nomadic eldar who range around.
I totally agree with you, Dark Lioness and The Giant Mantis. The whole Exodite existence is as much a lifestyle choice as anything else. The best comparison I can draw is of a person going to live in a commune because they feel tainted by modern life: they can still get at guns if they have to. The Exodites are attuned to the place where they live, like Dune's fremen, but they're not backward.
Rangers are cool and will be added; possibly Alaitoc pathfinders too, which are really lethal.
And yes, that whole stegadon/fire prism image is rather lovely, isn't it?
Well, here are 1st-draft rules for a bog-standard, troops-type dragonrider unit: the equivalent of mounted guardians. There would be an elites option that would have better armour and WS and BS of 4. You'll notice that I've left the points options blank: I thought about 18 points for a basic rider, and perhaps 12 more to upgrade to a squad leader. There's potential to really tool them up - but also to waste points on upgrades that may not get used.
As ever, thanks for reading, and all suggestions/comments appreciated.
EXODITE DRAGON KNIGHTS
The culture of the Exodites is intrinsically linked to the dragons they ride, and the great majority of exodites are born into the saddle. Dragon knights manage the mighty herds of megadons the exodites use for food, and in times of war turn their long lances and fierce steeds on the enemy to deadly effect.
Dragon Knight: Pts
WS - 3
BS - 3
S - 3
T - 3 (4)
I - 4
A - 1 (2)
Ld - 8
Save - 4
Number/squad: 5 - 10
Weapons: Close combat weapon, laser lance (+2S on charge, no other effect)
Options: All models in a unit may take extra armour (+1 save) for ? points, and/or shuriken catapults at +2 points per model. A unit armed with shuriken catapults may take up to two fusion guns at +10 points each.
Character: Any unit may upgrade one rider to a Knight Leader for ? points. He has one extra attack and may take weapons and armour from the Wargear section.
Any unit may be joined by a mounted Warlock.
Fleet of Foot
Dangerous Mounts: the ferocity and natural armour of the dragon mount affect the toughness and fighting potential of a dragon knight. These changes have been taken into account in the profile above.
Last edited by Steerpike; May 20th, 2006 at 23:06.
Give it 1 wound since the mount would have run away. 18 pts is more than a basic CSM costs so maybe 12-14 but remove the lances and give it to them as an option for 2 points. The Lance would replace the CC weapon since a lance is hard to hold with one hand and give the extra attack saying the mount will bite/claw the enemy. The leader should cost 8+ points.
Unless these Knights are conscripted I'd personally make them WS 4 despite how little effect it has on the game.
Well, if it has little effect on the game, I'll made them WS4. I'd rather they were WS4, personally, but I'm wary of making them too good, especially since the original riders in 2nd ed had WS3. We'll say 13 pts for a basic rider, 2 pts for a laser lance, 2 pts for shuriken catapults and 2 points for extra armour. The leader upgrade can cost 8 pts, as Bestial suggests.
I'm a little unsure whether they should have a warlock option, like guardians and jetbikes, or the equivalent of an exarch, or both. So far I think the impression other people have of exodites is very much like mine - which should mean that I'm on the right track.