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So my friend got me into this game fairly recently while he has been playing for quite some time. I have played against his DE list a handful of times with no real success. He plays very well and I have yet to come up with a solid strategy against him. I run pretty much an all calv list with heavy magic lvl4 mot, 2 lvl2 mot, m horse as core with a few hounds, dogres, and some chaos knights and an exalted. He runs 2x10 repeater xbow, 2 harpies, dark riders, shades usually with assassin in, 2 hydras, and blackgaurd with ASF while having a really heavy magic group. The deployment generally goes the same everytime while he places his 2 xbow near one corner next to a hill or forest with his blackgaurd and hydra(usually inside forest or behind hill) next to them basically waiting for me to come at him. This corner is stacked fairly well and then just some harpies, dark rider, and a hydra on the other side between the corner and the middle.
He pretty much just sits there all game with such a brutal magic and shooting game forcing me to come at him in which he positions his blackgaurd and hydra to pretty much punish me if I decide to charge anything. My magic which is my bread and butter usually gets neutralized as he positions his hydras in good spots to prevent flickering fire on them which he dispells most of the time regardless and then scrolls gateway whenever I don't miscast or fail to roll 14 with 5 dice.
While his magic phase is powerful you can always neutralize it for a turn or 2.
try out 3 level 2 sorcs.
1 with MoT (on a disc), dispell scroll and power stone
2 sorcs MoN (2 dispell scrolls each) (Magnificent Buboes spam his sorcs)
Chaos Lord (Chaos Daemonsword, MoT, and Helm of Many Eyes with a shield on a Daemonic mount
Give you Lord a unit of 3-4 trolls
Keep your sorcs mounted and hidden behind the enemy for the first turn to see where his shades are going to be placed. killing them is very important because they can stop your army from marching.
another strat i like against DE's is using what i call the "Flying Circus"
4 lvl2 sorcs of Tzeentch on discs flying around (with all dispell scrolls) (this completely eliminates the emenies magic for a good 2-3 turns).
Now what you do is use Flickering Fire of Tzeentch spam to kill his ranged / casters.
Harpies have a low leadership so its always worth shooting at them to make them flee.
Anyways hope that helped. and best of luck
DE are a very tough list, so it will always be an uphill battle. Whoever heard of a 175 point skirmishing move through terrain, scaly skinned, regenerating, fire breathing, 7 headed attacking beast, that has re-roll failed misses is just...... Anyhow slight rant there.
Against any magic heavy army, black tongue and puppet is a good combination. Hopefully you can shut the first magic phase down, and if your lucky kill the lord. Or you could throw a flying disc exalted in there to try and assasinate her, unless she is in a very killy unit with ASF?
Also you really need to neutralise ring of hotek to enable your magic phase to dominate. Hopefully you can do this with bubboes, using three dice to force a scroll? Taking out the BSB ASF banner before you get into combat also helps, bubboes for this too. I am finding that vs DE, two level two buboes casters are a must.
I think Lv4 MoT (disc, roar, puppet, dispell scroll, golden eye Tz, homunculus, enchanted shield) and two Lv2 MoN (Power Familiar, Book Secrets). Gives you 3 dice each for bubboes, 4 + homunculus for gateway, 2 for flickering fire. Well that is how I am trying to do it.
At least he doesn't take the hag queen who ends with 7-9 attacks at strength 10, re-rolled misses, in that ASF unit like my opponent does, with MR2 or 3, and an extra 4+ 'stop whatever spell affects her or the unit' rule makes for one tough cookie to crack. Especially since we have no shooting?
As you may tell, I am a little frustrated in dealing with DE too! Well good luck, let us know what you find works.
Never faced DE before so I can't really help you with proven strategies but from a theory point of view a Slaanesh giant would not only be fun to play but also be a hydra killing machine (Eadbut against I2, yes please!).
Against pendant of Kaeleth a MoN lvl2 mage is a must to kill him.
As for your lvl4 sorcerer, did you try MoS on him (making his unit frenzy or move in a wrong direction would be nice...). I know the lore seems bad, but if you go with a spell familiar and Third Eye of Tzeentch you will probably get access to Ecstatic Seizures (against T3 this spell will kill half of the unit) or the DE Lore (with the spell to get extra power dice...). If you are having difficulties in the magic phase try casting on 5 dice (with the infernal puppet). You have 20% miscasting, 20% irresistible.
As for his cheap camping tactics you really need to do the same!!! Especially with an all cav. army. Pound him with spell from a good distance (forget 18" flickering fire, go Nurgle, Slaanesh or undivided [fire, heavens]) and stay away from his crossbows and wait for turn 5-6 and take the all the quarters and maybe a juicy last minute charge once he panics and messes up with his unit. The result won't be pretty and he will enjoy the pleasure of having to come to you (laughs madly...).
My brother plays DE, so i face them a lot. Against those crossbows and if he ever takes any bolt throwers, a good choice for a mark is mark of nurgle. You can take a Tzeentch unit of knights with blasted standard for a 4++ against his shooting. Our knights are near indestructable. But agaisnt massed shooting, we will take casulties. Just from the massive amounts of saves needed. However once they charge into an enemy unit. The outcome is pretty obvious unless you attack a unit like temple guard that can whether such an attack. Myself i don't go all calvary.
I take one of 2 units for the flanks and take some warriors, a unit of khorne marauders with Great Weapons just to tarpit a unit. Against his hydras you may want to try your own monsters, a giant or Shaggoth would be an ideal choice. Give him mark of slannesh for ASF also. Giants are excellent fire magnets. Makes the enemy have to choose whether the knights or the giant is a bigger threat. Same with a Shaggoth, though trolls are also a fun choice. Try to get the regeneration spell on either though in case they do suffer a good deal of wounds, especially from Bolt throwers and cannons. Spawn are also a nice choice if you have leftover points. My slannesh spawn actually downed a hydra last game. They also are great for holding up lesser units like crossbows so they cant shoot, if you can get them in range though. I find putting it near the giant works, again the giant draws the fire. People tend to underestimate the fighting power of a spawn.
As far as HQ, a Khorne hero on juggernaut with a sword of battle (+1 attack) and enchanted shield for that -1 save is what ive been taking recently, works out pretty well Though Chaos runesword is also good. Armor of morrislebe on a tzeentch lord/hero makes a good defensive chaarcter, granted against magic its useless, but there are ways around that. I take a tzeentch sorc lord on disc for a general. He can fly around to enemy flanks and magic them to pieces. Here is a fun tip for DE, try to get Treason of tzeentch off on a DE unit like Executioners, Corsairs or even spearmen if need be. It's fun the watch them hack themselves to pieces, espeically with hatred. Nurlge sorcerers are good scroll caddies, i use them mainly for buboes to snipe enemy wizards. Put them on a barded steed to get them in range.
If a Million Guardsmen die, that's a statistic. If one marine dies, that's a tragedy.
While thanks for the majority of the advice I am not really looking for a change of list as more of a playing strategy. I have tried bringing a giant a few times but he always finds a way to kill it in 1 turn before he gets in a place to do anything(assassin with flight woo). I could see sitting back and use buboes possibly working and leaving him with nothing but knights to shoot at for a while.
I'd try panic testing them to death. Most effective if manage to get the spells Pandaemonium and Treason of Tzeentch. If not already you can boost your magic phase with Skull of Katam and power familiar. Gotta have infernal Puppet as well.
Get off Pandaemonium: no general leadership to units (Preferably with a lvl2)
Get off Treason of Tzeentch: most likely going to force panic tests without generals leadership
At lower casting costs than Gateway you should have plenty of dice.
Optional: Take an Exhalted BSB with the Doom totem for a -1 leadership
Optional: Take a Hellcannon to force panic tests at an additional -1 leadership
units will start to panic.
Yeah definitely trying to get them to fail panic tests is what I aim for. Treason of tzeentch however is an absolutely worthless spell against his army. Can't use it on the blackgaurd since they are ITP, the few times I have got it off on xbow or dark riders it has never done more than 1 wound. Flickering fire is hands down the spell to get them to panic but I generally just plain struggle at landing these and he will do whatever he can to prevent them. Not interested in doom totem or hellcannon as I do not want to really change up my list since I am playing him to practice my list for when I face other people.