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I know there's some mixed feelings on Falcons anyway, but I've had one for a while and I like using it.
But all other viability aside, what are people's thoughts on the holofield? Whenever I see army lists around here with a Falcon I don't see it much. It's pretty expensive, but I've found it extremely useful for keeping my Falcon around. A lot of destroyed results against me have been canceled out. Is there a better way of spending the points to keep the thing alive? Or do you just find them more useful elsewhere?
As the guy shooting at the falcon, I hate the holofield with a purple passion. It's a good investment for the price. I'm not sure what the actual stats are on base price of the tank versus the price of the upgrade versus what percent of the time the upgrade makes the tank live how much longer, versus how much more offense the tank then ends up providing, not to mention how much more fire it ends up drawing away from the rest of your army as a result. Anecdotal evidence is going to be at one extreme or the other. There will be stories of "my falcon died on turn one regardless of the holofield, it's worthless" and stories of "my tank's holofield saved it three times in one game!" But you also have to take into consideration that not all falcons are created equal. Does the falcon provide something that the rest of your army can't replace? That would make the holofield more important. Do you have a cheap falcon, or did you spend a lot of points on expensive weapons and other upgrades? The more the tank costs without the holofield, the less expensive the field becomes as a percentage of the investment it's protecting. My feeling as the guy playing against eldar is that it's well worth the points, especially when you consider what else you can get for the points...two banshees? One warp spider?
IG since 1999 __ DA since 2002 __ Tau since 2005 __ SoB since 2007
Brets 1997-1999 __ TK since 2009 __ Empire since 2010
I think it depends on how you're using the falcon, and your points level. At lean points I find I'm trying to "fit" the pieces in that the army needs, at higher points we've often filled up our Elite and Heavy choices, and then look favorably on upgrades.
As for use, you have the issue with the falcon that it's sort of half long range shooter and half transport. The layout of the falcon with all the long range weaponry on a high turret means that often you can sit around with a nice cover save. Which is often enough to get your opponent to target something else.
As a transport you tend to get closer in, where melta weaponry is very likely to penetrate and you've got a pretty good chance of getting taken out regardless of the holofield. In any case you'll likely be shedding weapons fast and being shaken in any case.
Personally I like using skimmers to screen off assaults and contest objectives (which can get your skimmer assaulted). The wave serpent field doesn't help there, but the holofield does, and melee attacks tend to not have that AP1 thing going on. Needing 6s to hit and the damage table re-roll (along with having 3 weapons and maybe vectored enginees) means it could be a very annoying thing to clear out. But in that role you'd want pretty well all the upgrades except for the shurican cannon so you've got an expensive vehicle, and two cheap serpents could very well be better. Though note you can still use star engines when shaken per the FAQ.
...but if you're new to Eldar a highly upgraded falcon is a lot of enemy annoying points on the table for not so much painting or money. Probably the best use of the thing is to be able to scoot along behind wave serpents and fireing way, and then as the game progresses and you've lost a weapon or two anyway switch to being aggressive and in their face.
Last edited by sunnyside; March 23rd, 2011 at 17:25.
holo-fields are good for falcons, I like to use them alot on other tanks too. The prism is more useful for 5th turn objective contesting then it is shooting.
Eldar -APOC- 6500 Points
Chaos Daemons -Fate Crusher- 3500 Points
Grey knights - 1000 Points
Thanks for the input everyone.
As for ramming, the rules specifically says "Whenever your opponent rolls on the damage table," so it sounds like it would apply. The fluff makes it sound like ti should only be for shooting but it seems it would apply to ramming and assaults.
A (non-AP1) penetrating hit has a 50% chance of immobilizing of killing a Falcon. This means that rolling twice and picking the lowest die effectively halves the chance of immobilizing or killing, equivalent to an additional cover save (although you can still be shaken or lose that pulse laser).
Considering the not uncommon case of a BS4 lascannon, you have ~17% chance of losing your Falcon to each shot without holo-fields, ~8% with them and a whopping ~4% if you're also obscured/flatout. Measured in number of shots for a kill, the progression is about 6-12-25, give or take. Chance to glance-immobilize is less than 1%.
I frequently put my kamikaze dragons in a Falcon and let that rush flatout alone into the middle of the battlefield. With holo-fields, it can handle it.
Last edited by Bregor; March 24th, 2011 at 08:17.
Holo-fields/spirit stones are mandatory on my falcons - alotta people prefer waveserpents but the falcon is just so DAMN hard to kill!! A fortuned holo falcon with Vectored engines can be one of the hardest tanks to blast out of the sky and serves eldar well as it's a reliable way to get our squads where they need to be. I prefer seer councils in them backed up by Doombanshees(Combined witchblades/power weapons kills just about everything) but 6 dragons work well too and are effective at such sizes.