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I was just wondering what people thought about the pros/cons of using Fire Dragons and/or Brightlances. Lately I've always had at least 6 Dragons in any list, but I also add a couple of TL Brightlances and at least one TL EML.
I noticed in some threads that people believe Fire Dragons to be a viable alternative for Brightlances. Here is my issue with that...if your opponent even has an inkling that you have a unit of Fire Dragons in a transport, they will go up in flames before they move halfway across the board. In addition, once those Dragons drop one target, you can kiss them goodbye. They are a pretty expensive choice for suicide troops.
Vs Brightlances which, agreed, are expensive but also last a bit longer due to being on a great tank that reduces any shots to a S8, making your opponent's chances of damaging your Wave Serpent about the same as you pegging his Land Raider (think I read 33% chance of a Pen).
I guess what Im saying is that I dont see how Fire Dragons can be better than Brightlances, especially when you have more than one tank to pop.
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They are more reliable once they are in melta range, are AP 1 so better on the damage chart also ( this is big I have had multiple lances shooting at 1 target for the whole game but never dropped it because of bad roles with the +1 this is less likely to happen ). Being closer means they have a better chance of getting a clear shot so fewer cover saves. More guns for less cost, you can almost get 3 firedragons for each brightlance. I am not going to say that they are simply better but they do have some very nice advantages. Even the giant bulls eye that is painted on the transport they use can be helpful in reducing the amount of shots the rest of the army takes.
Also how often are you only shooting at AV 14? with side and rear armor being lower, plus eldar being so fast EML with str 8 works as does mass str 6 from shuriken cannons and scatter lasers.
Having said that I tend to use brightlances and witchblades for most of my AT. And when I take firedragons it is as 10 man squads ment to be more than just a suicide squad.
for me dragons are better due to 5 shots instead of only one....but i have to take them in position which is always tricky while the lance you can shoot every turn
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you can take 5 fire dragons for 80 points i dont think that's overly expensive and if they get up to a vehicle, that vehicle is going to die. I'd say take both. use the bright lances and EMLs for average vehicles and use the firedragons to bomb into the land raider coming right at you.
I'm of the opinion that Fire Dragons are for destroying tanks and Bright Lances are best relegated to shaking/stunning support tanks like other Fire Prisms, Vindicators, and Basilisks as the Bright Lances ability to glance/pen on 4+ ensures they will get a shot at the chart.
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Against AV 12 or Below Lances are a waste and EML's are the better choice, just as effective against that armour and with the versatility of being able to shoot at troops and pin them. Dragons would be a waste against these units, I'd rather shoot at heavy infantry instead.
Against AV 13 or 14 Dragons are better than Lances, a larger chance of getting a penetrating hit when within half range (which isn't really a problem to get into with Serpents moving them around). The chance of getting a penetrating hit on a Land Raider is a bit over 60% per hit with +1 on the damage roll (which means 50% chance of destroying it outright), this is far superior to anything a lance can do. The fact that Lances are not AP1 is one of their largest flaws right now.
The best (and in my opinion only) viable long range heavy anti tank we have right now is 2 linked Fire Prisms, S 10, twin linked, BS 4 and AP 1. Although it's a heck of a lot of points for one shot and just a 20-25% chance of destroying a Land Raider or other heavy armour.
And lets not forget that the two tanks that have AV 14 all around are fairly immune to the Lance effects, Living Metal on the Monolith nullifies the Lance rule, and some sort of cheating notes (I think it's the emperors telephone number.) that Raiders can take that makes them immune to Lances.
how does everyone feel about a 5 man squad + exarch w/ dragons breath flamer and crack shot? It can deal with tanks (5 fusion gun shots) and hordes (reroll to wound heavy flamer) in a wave serpent?
Most people don't like to multirole eldar units. keeping the dragons as just 6 no exarch or powers keeps the price down. Use the 6 man squad if you plant to mainly hunt tanks. If you plan on using the unit for something other than just tank hunting I like the full 10 exarch with crackshot and dragons breath flamer. It can handle MCs, termies ( except those stupid TH/SS ones ), nobs and tanks all very well and the flamer can contribute to horde killing. I like dragons alot and they work well in almost any size unit but realize that it is hard to get more than 1 round of shooting out of them so minimize the points you loose.
Just noticed the date of the prior post, this may have been better served being a new thread but oh well.