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Today at work I was just having an odd thought about Energy Fields, Holo-fields, and their usefulness. I know this is kind of a silly thing to think about since the two never have the option to be taken over one another, but looking at the Math-hammer on holo-fields and having recently taken a foray onto the Eldar side, I was wondering what everyone thinks of these two things.
On one hand, holo-fields are costly. Over 30 points in upgrade, which is a rather hefty chunk of the base cost of a Falcon or Prism. And against AP 1 weaponry, unless you can get one of your opponent's dice to be a 1, you're going to be taking damage either way. The vehicle may survive, but bits and pieces of it are flying out the window.
Energy Fields on the other hand, can stop the damage from ever reaching your tank. Without tank hunters or other oddities, it stops most weapons and goes "HEY YOU. 50% chance of getting a roll on the damage table, at best". Railguns, meltaguns, ordnance, and the like are all neutered by the humble energy field, as I witnessed in my recent game (my opponents were actually both SM and Tau, and losing melta and having S8 railguns for them as a humbling experience at best). However, this does nothing against plain S6/7/8 shots, whereas the holo-fields do. It also does nothing against hand to hand attacks on the vulnerable rear armor.
Personally I know I'd prefer avoiding any damage getting through, especially at least a guaranteed Shaken result given the amount of weaponry on a Falcon (or the fact a prism's ONLY use is firing), so I prefer to think the Energy Field is the better of the two.
Which invention of the Eldar's do you think was more brilliant, and in your opinion, does this make the Falcon or Wave Serpent superior to the other option, especially considered as a transport?
Energy field would be far more useful on a Prism than the holofield option. The whole idea is to keep it from getting glanced at all so it can keep firing.
I used to run holofields on tanks, but I don't really run any falcons any more (they disappoint me so) and the FP really doesn't benefit, in my testing you get more weapon destroyed effects than without the holofields.
Wave serpents are my primary tanks, primarily due to the Falcon's pisspoor accuracy that makes it an expensive, mediocre tank. I'd rather see it made into full-out battle tank, with no troop transport capability (fulfilling a specialized role, in true Eldar fashion.)
I strongly believe the Holo-Field to be over priced in the 4th Ed Eldar codex because it lost the synergy it had with the 3rd Ed. Spirit Stones. Way back when, a Falcon with Holo-Fields and Spirit Stones get hit and come out completely unscathed, not shaken, not stunned. Still ready to move and fire. That made Holo-Fields brilliant and worth the points.
These days, in 4th Ed Codex and 5th Ed. rules, the Energy Field is the more brilliant because it is the only one that helps us avoid the shaken and stunned results. Which is what Eldar need. For us, a shaken tank is as useful as a dead one.
Arvan'drynn Craftworld - 15,000pts (deceased)
Tau - 2,000 points (atomized while on patrol)