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There is a Shooty Skaven thread, so I thought I'd make a Combat Skaven thread. I'm in a similar position. I've hopped around in what Fantasy army I'd play, but I'm settling on playing Skaven. Though I don't want to shoot a ton. I want to have a mass tide of rats.
How do you go about making a CC-based Skaven Warlord Horde for 2000 points. The only shooting I'd want would be 2 Warp Lightning Cannons, its just too cool to pass up. I've been fooling around with lists but not sure how I'd build it.
I'm also worreid how I'd handle enemy elites. I thought maybe a 5 base unit of a rat swarm could tie up elites for several turns, while I work on killing the rest of their army. Yet those 5 swarm bases are pretty expensive.
The other thing is magic defense. I don't want too invest in a bunch of shooty Engineers, but then I will have no magic defense.
Also, how do I make use of Slaves and how many should I take?
Really what I'm asking is, how can I put together a competetive CC Skaven Horde?
Speaking as a non-skaven player but regular opponent:
- I'm not 100% sure on the engineers, but take 1 and give it what magic defence you can. (Who cares about a few MM anyway?)
- The slaves are there to take casualties. 2 or 3 units of 20, deployed 6 or 7 wide costs< 150points (I think) and makes an excellent fleeing shield. They can take casualties from shooting/MMs, and then when they get charged they can flee through your other units without penalty (IIRC) and you can charge with your combat units.
- plague monks and censer bearers are nasty. Take them.
- so are rat ogres.
- ditto gutter runners. These guys can seriously dent your opponent's plans, and cause more fear than they should.
- ditto stormvermin. Put your general with these fellas.
Apart from this, just try to get as many rats on the table. Feed a sacrificial unit or two of giant rats to elite infantry- get them to overrun badly. Swarms can be a liability these days. Don't take more than 2, they will die however many you take. 2 will hold the enemy long enough...
Anyway, hope this helps you.
Oh, one final thing, I'm assuming you'll take 2 fighty heroes to fill up the rest of your character slots. Deploy these in units away from the general so the extra Ld isn't wasted. And a BSB is useful too.
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Been playing skaven as my first army now for about 4 months, and I can tell you, whilst the painting may get tedious at times, they are so much fun to play with purely for their sheer cowardliness and ingeniousness. it's like watching pinky and the brain on a battlefield.
Anyway, on to the topic. 2x warplightning cannons = GOOD THING. guns that cost 100pts and have the potential to shoot AT anything, THROUGH almost anything at up to 48 inches away, with auto hits on the line and up to strength 10 hits is lots and lots of fun. If that can't handle enemy elites, then either you're doing something wrong or they're cheating.
But yea, if you are enamored with the idea of masses of rats swarming the enemy, then that's your army right there. whack in a ton of slaves to be meat shields, hide the clanrats behind them to avoid being peppered with missile fire, and have a unit or two of storm vermin to be your kick-in-the-face troops by the time you get to engage.
in regards to the swarms, it all depends on tactics. if you want them there to stall, then yes, they're the thing you need. unbreakable and 6" movement is very nice for stall tactics. If you're looking for a fighting force however, they are a waste of points.
The thing to do with slaves, and to a lesser extent clanrats, is have plenty of units, but of a relatively small size. at 2 points a model for slaves, I'd say chuck in 4 units of 20 and surround yourself on all sides for a cheap, mobile defense. clanrats you probably want slightly larger units, say up to 30 models in each. This way, you retain maneuverability, yet still have enough models to be able to take a peppering from whatever comes before close combat can get underway and still pack a punch.
magic defense - it's a toss up, really. warlock engineers are fun in the magic phase and great when stuck in the front of a marching unit for softening up the enemy in front, and also gives an additional dispel dice per model for magic protection. however, they suck in close combat, only having the skills of your basic clanrat, and even worse armour saves unequipped. Whilst chieftains and warlords do not give any magical defense, they are much cheaper, and so will give you the space to afford more units point wise to make up the numbers potentially lost by enemy magic.
So, yea. Hope that helped. if you want combat heavy, stick in tons of slaves and clanrats and run amok.
Oh yea, by the way. in regards to the cannons, in the first couple of rounds, don't be afraid to fire into the slaves. it's what makes playing skaven fun. if you kill a handful of slaves and a couple of the enemy, it's still a win in your favor.
Last edited by salamander3; September 12th, 2008 at 02:18.