Welcome to Librarium Online!
Hello. My first post! Woohoo!
Anyway, I am going to be playing in an upcoming tournament (actually, it's the Baltimore Grand Tournament) and I am tired of playing the same old Wych-dominated portal army and I wanted to try something completely new and unexpected. My two choices are either an Army of Shadows or a Haemonculi Coven.
To be perfectly honest with everyone, I have been playing Dark Eldar since they were introduced. (I started playing just when 3rd edition came out), however, I don't get to play very often. My won/loss record is not very good. My real motivation for taking one of these lists is that I really want to strive to be different. I'm not too worried about winning or losing, I just want to surprise my opponents and have a lot of fun.
With that said, my questions are:
Has anybody tried one of these two themes in a major tourney setting?
How well did it compete?
How fun was it for you and your opponent?
Are either of these lists viable for a tournament setting?
If anybody would like to see any of my proposed lists, I will post them on the list thread later. Thanks.
<------------------ = newb
If you would be so kind as to elaborate what an Army of Shadows or Haemonculi Coven list might be comprised of. I'm pretty new to this army and want to know all i can about them.
You've been playing the army since it came out, so kudos to you! Unfortunatly, it seems that the Dark Eldar army has been very much overlooked for quite some time. I barely knew about them myself. My brother gave me a set of DE Warriors from a 3rd Ed Starter box, and the've sat about for awhile. I found a DE Codex (newest edition) on ebay for a steal and won it. Now I'm VERY interested in the army as a whole. Most of the models leave much to be desired, but the fluff and wargear seems inticing.
I only really knew about three different types of DE armies: Raider Rush, Wych Cult, and Webway Army. If you could tell me about these other two, it would be most appricatied!
Firstly welcome to the boards.
Secondly, if your win rate is (as you say) needs to be lifted, I can not recommend either a Haemonculus Coven or an Army of Shadows based on Mandrakes and Captain Decap.
But if your aim is to have “fun” then my leaning must go to the Mandrakes here,
The problem will always be that, even though they can remain hidden until turn 3, they don’t pack enough punch for their points when they reveal. And if you remain hidden for the full three turns the rest of your army cops it in the neck due to low numbers on the board.
With the other option of Haemonculi and Groteques, it’s the Grots that worry me, sure they are almost bullet proof but then what? They were designed as a meat shield but what exactly are you going to shield here? A Coven in my eyes provides too much defense and not enough offense – solve that and you have a winner!
A recognized Coven player here is “Kwikwag,” he will gladly give practical advice whereas I can only advise on a theoretical basis.
In a controversy the instant we feel anger we have already ceased striving for the truth, and have begun striving for ourselves.
Hey. Both the Haemonculus Coven and the "Army of Shadows" are themed varient lists.
The Haemonculus Coven uses Haemonculi (up to 6) as HQ. Grotesques in theory, would act as troops (although, to make it a legal list, you can only have up to three squads and they count as Elites). Warriors and/or Mandrakes make up the Elites (again, to make it tourney legal, the Warriors count as troops). Talos for Heavy Support. There are no Wych-type of units in the list (although I have been toying with the idea of putting one Haemonculus on a skyboard and addind an accompanying squad of Hellions).
This list focuses more heavily on defense and holding objectives.
The "Army of Shadows" is a Mandrake themed list with one of the HQs being Decapitator. The elites are filled by up to 30 Mandrakes.(That's nine hidden markers). Everything else comes on the table via deep strike. So for at least the first two turns of the game, the only thing you have on the table are nine markers and a hidden Decapitator.
This list is very risky, but can be a lot of fun, especially if your units are all comimg on the table about the same time. (preferably turn three.) Usable units include: Raider squads and Ravagers with screaming jets. Hellions and Scourges. And a Lord either with a Raider squad or on a Hellion skyboard. My list will also include a lot of pinning type weapons(Horrorfex, Terrorfex, Xenospasm, and Archangel of Pain). I'm leaning towards this list just because it looks like it will be a lot of fun and could also be competative against non-fearless armies.
You already know my response, Coven of Shadows with kroot mercs.
Mix them up but be warned since I have been playing coven for a couple months now its very hard to be competitive against the marines. Even the Mandrakes and the Decapitator will have their problems against the power armor armies.
Against the non-power armor armies they would do very well depending on your tactics and strategies but I fear that tourneys are just full of marine types.
There are a few pluses to each. Shadows are good against Tau, who huddle in fear from anything they can't shoot, and when their shooting phase can't accomplish anything, they become seriously unnerved.
That's also a plus for covens. The grotesques can simply soak up obscene amounts of fire, due to their unique FNP rule. I'll toss you a link to another post on how best to mess with your opponents in this manner. The other thing cults have are Talos. We all know that against Tau, they will eat warriors. Just stick them in a WWP with a Haemonculi, drop it near your target, and have some fun.
EDIT: Found it, it's Kwikwag's post. http://www.librarium-online.com/foru...d.php?t=103499 (Grotesques, are they worth using?)
Last edited by Mongooseo; October 4th, 2007 at 21:28.
I've by no means been playing DE as long as you have, as I've only played for going on a year and a half or two years with DE at all, but I started playing AoS, and I've actually never lost a game with them (hence why they are now outlawed at my local GW, lol) Anyway, the awesomeness of this list, is that if performed well (and a little luck with dice) it can be unstoppable.
That being said, it is by no means an easy list to play. It relys almost completely on Deep Strike Rolls, Reserves rolls, tons of low toughness, high point cost elite choices, and timing. Timing is probably the most important to recognise (despite what most people would say). I can't tell you how many times that if I had dropped them one turn earlier, my opponent would have enveloped me and blown me to bits (damn IG *grumble grumble*). It really takes practice to get good with them, and I don't know when this tournament is, but I reccomend at least 20-25 games before bringing them into a competative atmosphere, as by then, you will completely know the list, and be able to think at least two turns ahead of your opponents. Also, listen to some Bob Marley, it gives you the "who the **** cares?" attitude you need to succeed with them.
Alright, lets get more into the thick of it, shall we? The biggest ammount of points that will be spent in this army, will be on your mandrakes and their awesome leader, The Decapitator.
MANDRAKES: The most amazing thing about them, is their special deployment rule, which means they wont be forced to show themselves until turn 3. Also, they will always deploy with the rest of the army, so thats useful during scenarios which require you to hold back units. Another awesome thing about these guys is that they will ALWAYS strike first (unless your opponent has frags, but who really buys them anyway?) The Mandrakes have the same stats as the Wyches, except they exchange 1 Initiative for +1 to their armor save (which is useless, as if your opponent gets his attaks back, you'l probably die anyway.) Also, they get +2 to whatever their coversave is, so if you kill a unit and go back into cover, you can easily claim table quarters with them if your opponent doesn't want to hoof his way in there to get em. They get 3 attacks on the charge, and always get charge at least the first charge (otherwise you shouldn't be playing the list to begin with) and will usually hit any normal footslogger with WS 4. Their speed is their key, as if there is ever a circumstance where they dont attack first (which would be against Eldar or an Ork Warboss) they will probably die. Their weaknesses, are obviously their armor save and toughness. These two combined, make very weak charge recievers, so dont ever get charged, and always choose to reveal before you are forced to. I love them, but I can understand why a lot of other people dont.
DECAPITATOR: This dude is the king of Mandrakes. His special deployment rule is nasty (as you probably realise) and his stats match. 6 WS 6 attacks on the charge, and the posibilty of one or more striking at double strength are awesome. I once took out an entire Black Templars Honor Guard with this guy, and gave their leader a wound, making him run away to find another combat to fight in like a little girl. Trust me, this dude is brutal. He has all the benefits of normal mandrakes, and leadership 10 oince he kills someone (which should be the turn he's released). The best thing to do with this guy, is either hide him in an area terrain place and wait for a juicy unit to run by, or deploy him where you think the command squad will most likely be, and then tear the unit (or character) to shreds. He is by far my favorite character, and I love the conversion opprotunities possible for him, making it the reason this guy almost never leaves my list.
OTHER UNITS: This is a big source of debate for most generals. Everyone has a different way of getting that portal into the middle of the table, but I reccomend that you use scourges. They can ALWAYS deepstrike, so you will be guaranteed to be able to play the AoS even in missions where deep striking isn't possible, and for those where it is, I would say take some Hellions or Raiders and Ravagers with screaming jets to come flying out of nowhere and blow some stuff to hell with darklances and disintegrators. I think you should definately take raider squads if at all possible, as that gives all of your units the opprotunity to deep strike, and adds another dark lance and additional armor for your already pitiful armor save. I've used Talos, and they're nice in WP armies, but if you're playing a pure AoS, I'd say leave them at home. The more units you HAVE to send through the webway, the worse off you are. Dark Eldar Lords and their retinues are nice, but I'd say that a scourge syrabite with a Shadow Field is better than another beefy character taking up tons of points better used on raiders and warriors.
Thats about it. I have to stress Patience and TIMING above just about everything else with this list, as a too agressive general will get shot to hell, or beaten to hell by turn four, and too cautious of one will not kill enough enemies for the juicy victory (or victory at all) that you would be looking for with this list. Its a great list, and lots of fun to see the look on your opponents face when they find out that they're playing one of the most difficult to beat and fearsome armies in the game.
Ahhhhh, the fear, its so yummy! Come taste their tears! Its so yummy you guys.... - Cartman
Good luck with it, hope you do well.:happy:
JackalLegion-Thanks for the great tactica. I'll be sure to keep your thoughts in mind.
KWI-You're absolutely right. ShadowCoven is the way I want to go (Although I won't be able to use anty Kroot). I'll post my list on the army list page so you guys can tear it up.
I don’t want to be a wet blanket here but some of your claims are just way too optimistic.
For example “Mandrakes have the same stats as the Wyches, except they exchange 1 Initiative for +1 to their armor save,” doesn’t take onto account the fact that Mandrakes have zero options available to them. No wargear, no character upgrades, nothing and they are cost more.
Whereas the Wyches are cheaper, have access to what could be one of games best Wargear choices, the Agoniser, combat drugs, Wych weapons and to top it off the free “Dodge save.”
The comparison between Mandrakes and Wyches is misleading at best I am sorry to say and if you rely on their hidden deployment to save the day then I suggest you really explore the combined mechanism of Wyches mounted on a Raider, especially when emerging from a portal and going straight into close combat. This unit can take on anything the game can throw at it, something that can’t be said for Mandrakes.
And how do you get 6 attacks out of the Decapitator ever? The “Additional Limbs” attacks have already been factored in to his profile, check the Codex please. Also the fixed deployment is so random as to be useless in my opinion, just imagine having your HQ revealing all alone with no support, guess who gets blown apart by the enemy at the first opportunity!
You say “The more units you HAVE to send through the webway, the worse off you are,” really?
How you ever played an escalation game, because the opposite rings true here. And as always a balance between what is on the table as opposed to what is in Reserves has to be struck, not just using a minimum amount as a rule. There would be no point in using a portal at all if this were true.
The reason these alternative lists don’t get much play time is that they are very hard to use well, the dice have to favour you to stand any chance at all. I am not saying it can’t be done but its an up hill battle all the way.
You say that you have never lost a game with AoS yet go on to conflict with this by saying they need at “least 20-25 games before bringing them into a competative atmosphere.” Are you speaking from experience here, saying that all your games to date with them have been with inexperienced players or just winging it?
I could mention more here but I am curious as to what you base your claims on as they clash with almost everything I have learn’t about Dark Eldar over the years.
I await your reply.
In a controversy the instant we feel anger we have already ceased striving for the truth, and have begun striving for ourselves.
1. Thats very true, they leave quite a bit to be desired as far as cutomization options are cocerned, I won't try to deny that. I too was confused by my sentence. What I meant to say, was that they have the same stats EXCEPT for the fact that 'drakes have a 5+ save in relativity to the Wythce's 6+ save, and that the Wytches have Initiative 6 as opposed to the Mandrakes Initiative 5.
2. I don't especially like Wytches, for one reason or another. I know they're fine units, but I just have always liked the look of DE and Drakes a lot more than the Wytches, and dont especially like the fluff behind the Wytches, thats all. I have never used Wytches instead of Drakes (as that would defeat the point of even trying to play AoS, as they would never make it three steps before the entire opposite side of the board ate them away with firepower. I think you underestimate the prospect of making it across the board unscathed, and sometimes forgotten about. Instead of having 3 2 model units making it across, I have 3 10 model units ready to charge into one unit after another.
3. 4 attacks base + 2 CC weapons + charging = 6 attacks total. Simple math bro. If you passed first grade, you would know that 4 + 2 = 6. Additional limbs adds 2 to his total attacks, true, but they say nothing about counting for his attack gained for being armed with two one handed weapons. Also, thats what he's good for. He's a one hit wonder (literally) he eats up a very juicy unit, and when he dies, has already paid his points back. Plus you dont have to reveal him turn one, I state that it is sometimes tactically the right thing to do.
4. When playing AoS, that is true. Play them once, and I'm sure you will understand. Warp Portals dont drag everything out first turn its dropped. You have to make reserve rolls, and then you can only deploy whatever fits within the room of an ordanance blast marker. That means if you play the way you intend, then half the army is out against all of theirs, and against very large horde armies, thats never a good thing. You would be swamped, and when their units get over the warp portal, I dont know if you realise this, but nothing can come out while the warp portal is covered. Which means one vehicle decides to sit on top, and unless you can blow it away, the rest of your army will never arrive.
5. What I'm saying, is that I am not someone who says "hey, I have 1,500 points of bulls***, I'm gunna play in that tournament that costs $10." I would rather be completely safe with my army, and used to its functions, instead of outstepping my own boudaries skill-wise. No, I did not gang up on amateur players, thats a huge no-no at my local shop, and vets. play vets., ams. play ams. never intermixed unless the amateur challenges a veteran. I cant speak for you, but that is a ludicrous prospect in my mind.
Don't asshme that because you THINK you know everything there is to know about playing DE, you suddenly know how to play AoS. Its a very different army style. Also, Wytches are not Dark Eldar. I get the feeling you're just a wytche player who uses tactics that require no guile or forthought at all, and would seek to try to upstage someone who knows what they're talking about. Don't even try. You'll just embarress yourself.