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Dark Eldars, any good as a starter army for a complete newbie?
Not a massive essay on the subject, but thanks for the quick input. Ha ha
DE are not a forgiving army. They're probably not a great choice unless you already have a decent grasp of rules and tactics.
On the other hand, if you can tolerate defeat and learn from your mistakes then it's probably not too bad.
"It depends". :-)
The DE have a great range of builds and tactics, so you will find something in there to suit your style (so long as it heads towards fast tactical play with a large component of movement - DE tends not to work so well for turtling at the back line).
On the cause for concern side, three things.
Firstly, the kits are not simple. They're beautiful models, but there are many pieces and many options. A bit of a learning curve.
Secondly, the DE have a lot of special rules, and rely on synergies between units to prevail. As above, the learning curve.
Thirdly, DE units and vehicles die really fast if you leave them where they can get shot at. You'll need a heart of solid stone (black, treacherous stone) to deal with getting tabled and still thank your opponent for a good game. Of course, when you finally learn how to make them work, you will taste the sweet sweet pain of your foes with even greater satisfaction. ...And still thank your opponent for a good game.
DE= most difficult army to learn
5+ Saves and T3 means we are as tough as IG but lack the low costs and massive #s. Plus all of our vehicles are 10/11 armor. So we drop like flies if you don't know what your doing.
DE take lots of finesse to know how to hide in the shadows, kill, move, and hide again. For a beginner army it's hard to find something easier than a SM army that focuses on Salamanders. IG/Tau Gunline sit back and shoot is also pretty easy to learn.
Ironically, I've had more success now that I've just started to play my Dark ELdar than I managed with myearly Space Marine battles!
Of course, I've been playing for over a year by the time I first gave the girls a go... just modelling and painting Dark Eldar before that.
The days of DE being inaccessible to new players are long gone - now they are just as good as any xenos army for new players. The only real difference is you will often feel the army is weak simply because new players have a tendency to attack everything head-on, a situation which will always favour the higher toughness and better save commonly found on the various flavours of marines.
Ironically if a new player played every army bar marines the issue somewhat goes away, since the majority of non marine armies have similar durability on their infantry.
Whether DE are good for a new player depends upon the mindset of the player. They are an army of "specialists" (Everyone has their own role.) and if this is how you approach games, then you'll be able to handle them, no problem. Myself, I've recently started a Marine army after years of successfully playing Dark Eldar. I've yet to win one battle! :-)