Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Playing Eldar: My Experiences so far.

I've been messing around with Eldar for a couple of months now, but have been splitting me efforts enough to not have too many games in with them just yet. I'd say maybe somewhere around 7 or 8, almost all in the 1850-2000 point range.

My lists have been mostly similar, though I have been tweaking here and there to really get some ideas about the various upgrades. Here are the basic elements I've been using in most of my games recently:

2 full dire avenger squads; exarch with power weapon, shimmershield, bladestorm, and defend, mounted.
2 5-man fire dragon squads, mounted
Guardian jetbike units
Eldrad or Farseer
2-4 Vypers
A mixture of wave serpents and falcons for transport duties. All have shuriken cannons, serpents have lances, and falcons have scatter lasers.

I've brought in a couple of support units to flesh out the list. I typically use Harlequins or Shining Spears.

What I keep finding is that by utilizing larger squads, I am much weaker when my tanks explode. Up until that point, my units are marginally durable and can inflict some serious hurt all while routing the enemy.

My most common aggression tactic when isolating a unit is to deploy my skimmers as a wall in front of my firebase to prevent charges. If this tactic is successful (and it usually is), I am free to embark back in the transports on my next turn and keep myself mobile. When possible, I try to get both dire avenger squads in on this. Typically at least one of the squads will be guided, and their target will be doomed, throwing out a barrage of shuriken fire. Against most units, this is quite effective. Units with Feel No Pain are a bane to this though, as they cut the effectiveness of each squad in half.

I am finding, on average, my guardian jetbike squads to be too fragile. I am planning on running some larger squads to see how it pans out, and I am expecting it to work out much better. These guys are basically perma-guided dire avengers with a better armor save and more mobility. Even using reserves to delay their entrance, these guys will either all die to any sort of focused fire or take a couple of casualties and flee off the table. I have been using them in squads of 4-7 so far (including the added Warlock)

My greatest disappointment so far has been the shining spears. Their low model count and high cost make them extremely easy targets, but if you do get the opportunity to strike with them they excel. Their durability and armor are just enough to keep them in one piece so that the unit my use Hit and Run and relocate on their turn. Adding 2-3 more models to the squad limit would make these guys super-strong in my mind. As it stands, this squad is almost as likely to run from shooting as a guardian jetbike squad and lack the ability to reroll the failed test.

Harlequins, on the other hand, have a completely different problem. These guys are so fragile that blinking in their direction will kill half the squad. I have been using a mounted force so far, so I haven't yet utilized a full size foot squad, but I can assure you that that is definitely the best option for these folks. Immunity to gunfire at 24 inches and a guaranteed minimum 13-inch charge lets them get where they want to go. I just find that they do not put out enough wounds to justify their cost or frailty without focusing the army completely around them. The 10-man squad will at least be able to take incoming fire more easily, especially with cover, but I find they typically die in the assault phase after having failed to kill enough of whatever they just assaulted and only having a 5+ save.

If you have some insights into these units you can share, please do. I've got a long way to go before I'm anywhere near "good" with this army, much less able to give sound tactical advice to random peoples over the interwebs.

1 comment:

  1. If you want a Jetbike squad that performs, go for a "Poor Man's Jetlock" squad.
    9+ GJBs w 3 Shuriken Cannons; Warlock w Conceal & Singing Spear; Farseer w Fortune, Runes of Warding & Singing Spear. Optional Spirit Stones, Doom, and Runes of Witnessing.

    Still only rates "decent", but is fast, Scoring and a nice place to put your required HQ.

    It sounds like you're realizing why many people use Serpent Stormies and/or DAVU.

    Were you looking for advice on those particular units or just in general?



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