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It still needs some tweaking but the core concept is solid. What do you think?
Lord, Cadaverous Cuirass, Crown of the Damned, Avatar of Death, Infinite Hatred, Master of the Black Arts
BSB, Dark Acolyte, Avatar of Death, Drakenhoff Banner; Nightmare
Vampire, Dread Knight, Walking Death, Scroll x 2
Skeletons x 25 full command and Banner of the Dead Legion
Skeletons x 25 full command and War Banner
Zombies x 30
Dire Wolves x 5
Dire Wolves x 5
Black Knights x 5 champion, musician, Banner of Hellfire
Spirit Hosts x 3
Fell Bats x 5
When I first conceptualized this list, my characters weren't so beefed up, but after deciding to use only 3, it seemed a good distribution of points and magic dice. The BSB can roll two dice for IoN and the two army dice can be split between the lord and the other other vampire. IoN worked wonders in 6th edition, and it is still worth wonders.
I have 10 power dice, 6 dispel dice, 2 dispel scrolls, and good combat spread across some tarpit units. The army has some oomph with the black knights and varghulf. Plus, raise undead is still a valuable spell.
Your list looks like it would work pretty will with a few exceptions.
The Lord has a split focus. While this isn't generally bad, if you want a balance of combat and magic there are better choices. Master of the black arts gives you all the spells from a lore, but you still only have 2 dice from him, so you will only be casting 1 or 2 spells a turn anyway. In later turns these dice will probably be going towards invocation, so the points spent on having all those other spells will be a waste.
The drakenhoff banner is really awesome, but you might get some people throwing a fuss. In my opinion you are paying 225 points minimum just for the ability to hold the banner, and for that price it had better be awesome.
I haven't done the math on your list, but if you have 5 points to spare I might use 4 wraiths over the spirit hosts. If you get lucky and actually cast the wind of undeath spell you can use those bases for that. I think the terror and skirmish movement of the wraiths are top notch for disrupting enemy lines, and they will probably do more damage than the hosts. The only downside is that they don't deny ranks, so keep the hosts if that is what you are using them for.
Good luck, and may your foes only strengthen your numbers.
Last edited by frozencore; December 6th, 2008 at 08:38.
I like the list a lot, probably because it looks very similar to the list I use.
I partly agree what with frozencore said (though master of the black arts is the +2 power dice one, forbidden lore gives you all the spells), I love spirit hosts but it's certainly worth considering the wraiths even though looking at the list I think the spirit hosts fit in perfectly.
My only suggestions would be a few tweaks in the character set up. I'd be tempted to drop a scroll and give the vampire the black periapt instead as that can add to your magic defence and offense and is a lovely little item. With the 10 points that saves I'd give the Lord the sword of might to make him a bit better in combat so drop a zombie or 2 to find the points as they should be re-raised easily enough. Other than that nothing else stands out to me.
BEN DIESEL FTW!!!
Thanks for the comments, guys.
Yeah, the hosts are there for rank busting since I don't have much else that can do it. If the wolves aren't busy chasing down war machines or such, they won't last long in the flank/rear of a combat unit. So it's up to the knights and host to be the main rank busters, I hope.
The Drakenhoff Banner can get some whines, but I'm going to remind people that regenerating skeletons are a very different beast than regenerating wights. I'm finding it tough for my undead troops to last long against something like Dark Elves Black Guard or anything else with a high number of high initiative attacks (and high weapon skill). The other knight I actually beat Black Guard for the first time with regenerating skeletons and spirit host on the flank. They rolled a 10 and that was it.\
Yeah, I've had a hard time finding a decent lord build. I want enough magic to do well in the magic phase. That's always seemed necessary for VC, but with vamps at lvl 1, it's hard to get much support. And then he needs to be survivable, so the cuirass and crown. But I want something in to the army to have str 7 attacks, so the avatar of death. And I forgot to say he's lvl 3.
Is there a way to tone down the lord and still have decent magic? And survive and dish out a little pain? Forbidden lore is fun, even for taking all the VC spells, but yeah, it starts coming down to Danse and Invocation.
My concept of ranked army has really been hit by high point costs in characters.
Also forget about the sword of might suggestion on the lord I forgot that avatar of death gave a great weapon (I tend to ignore it in favour of dread knight).
I think if you want a ranked army it may be wise to drop the drakenhoff banner despite how good it is, this sort army would benefit more from the helm of commandment in my opinion especially with a large amount of skeletons. Swapping the BSB for a helm vampire would also give you some points to play with, just a thought.
BEN DIESEL FTW!!!
Hmm... I also like this list. It is probably very similar to many of our lists, since it is a well balanced force.
I noticed only 2 things on my first readthrough-
Firstly, you have a Vampire as a scroll-caddy. If you need a scroll caddy, I would go with a Necromancer (which can also ensure a VanHel's), otherwise, I'd give that Vampire something to augment his combat or potential casting abilities.
With your ability to raise nearly everything in the army, you shouldn't worry about too much magic, except to dispell a few spells here and there that might threaten your Ethereals.
Second, your units are all maxed out. Do you plan on putting your Vampires into units, or are they all going stag? Lonesome vampires are easy prey for magic and flyers (who can kill through CR). You could save a couple of points by dropping Skeletons throughout the army to give your Vamps a place to stand.
One the next read through, I looked at your list from a tactical standpoint and one thing caught my eye immediately-
You have two units of Wolves and a large unit of bats. You claim that your Wolves are going to be operating as mage/warmachine-hunters, but you never state what purpose the Bats serve. Such a large unit of bats, capable of leaping over enemy lines with their flying move, would make them good at hunting as well. Without shooting, what need have you for march-blocking? You've wraiths operating on the flanks, and the knights.
I guess what I'm asking is why you either have the wolves, or why you've got the large unit of Bats. Can you define a role for them?
The last thing that I have to say about the list, is that agree with the comments about the Drakenhof banner, AND the wraiths-
The banner is not as useful as it seems. You can already raise skeletons with your spells, and skeletons are quite cheap. A 225 just to cart that banner around, you'd have to save almost 30 skeletons for it to earn it's points back. Dropping that item would free up a vampire to carry better magic items/powers or for you to take another unit altogether.
And when it comes to the Wraiths, I would drop them in favor of CairnWraiths. With their Ethereal rule, the striking last with their greatweapons matters very little. What DOES matter is the high number of high-strength attacks that these guys can generate. Remember, although they are flankers, they still give +1 combat resolution just for attacking the flank. This, mixed with ranks, and the large number of kills that these models can generate, should be enough to swing most combats. Additionally, their skirmish ability allows them to be fielded in wider units, thereby providing more units with a screen against shooting and unwanted combat. And nothing makes VC armies tougher, than being virtually immune to incoming fire.
Overall, it's an interesting list. I particularly like some of the creative builds for the hero vampires, allowing them to multi-task.
Biggest problem I have is the drakenhof banner. Only two units I believe deserve it are grave guard preferably, or the blood knight unit of utter destruction. With th black knights, you've doubled their point cost.
I also think you may want to consider a corpse cart to support your skeletons, mostly for its bound spell. Just a thought.
I am heading off to the Peace Corps. It is bery likely I will not be back. Good luck to all of you endeavors.
Very cool list! Heavily armored vampires always make me happy. This list actually looks a lot like a list I have, if you take out the Varghulf and add in a Grave Guard unit. I just posted it a few minutes ago.
The only thing I would worry about in your list is the lack of any Master powers.. those make it a lot easier to raise more troops and give you the option of going above starting strength if you know you're going to take a really nasty charge from a foe.
Edit: I also like having the Royal Banner of Strigos on my Black Knights. Like you, I use them to break ranks and with a reroll on the charge, they hit (and KB!) a lot more, which makes it a lot more likely for me to win the combat.
Last edited by Psyan; December 8th, 2008 at 01:45.
"Is Archon Braigh-Dee going to have to choke a Wych?
Courtesy of Wicky: D.C.S.S.E.P.C.I.C.B.
Yeah, I run that super cheap flaming attacks banner. We don't have a lot of regen around here, but it is nice to know that I can deal with it if I have to and the cost isn't too much that I care if it goes to waste.
I know some people really love that drakenhoff banner, but to me the cost is really prohibitive. While it makes a unit rock hard (especially wraiths) with only M4 it can be easily ignore, and then you expensive trick is just going to waste. Combine that with whiner's souring a victory, and you might see why I don't take it. You do get your regen to prevent crumble, but even without it you can usually straight up win. You have 7 static CR, plus the great weapon attacks give 1.388 even against chaos warriors. Anything you come across would be hard pressed to beat you. Having no magic banner also gives you the option to give him the flayed hauberk for a cool 2+ even with a GW, as you BSB is pretty squishy right now with only a 4+ save. This would also up his strength to 7, making chariots think twice about charging your block.
What exactly do you want your Lord to do? Be all casty, all fighty, or a mix?