View Full Version : Black orcs with shields

06-09-2007, 10:29
Ok, the next battle I'm doing, I'm planning on using an orc heavy army (because I got all these models, I ought to use them from times to times, my gobs won big deal last time, they deserve a break).
So I want to try something that I've never tried (that's the fun with O&G, loads of different combinations to try out): a core unit of black orcs with shields. As far as I know, they don't seem very popular. 14 points a pop just for a 4+ save against fire. People are not even considering using the shields in melee. Why? Even Avian ignores the option in his BO page (doesn't pay off, he says).
Well no matter, I want to try it out, this way:
Ranks of 6 (or 7, I'll see if I can get them all in contact with a rank of seven), shields, that they would use would they fail the charge. This gets you a S5 attack on the first turn, combined to a 3+ save in h2h. How can that be bad? My BO, when charged, tend to suffer a lot, they're not any harder than any other orc when it comes to that. Now with the weapon selection I won't ditch the possibility of taking two choppas if I get the charge, but, imho, paying the additional point to save my unit from a nasty charge ("glares at the chaos knights, with shields they will get a 5+ save, not bad") might prove well worth it.
Well anyway, anybody else has tried that and got an opinion on the matter?

I've never been a fan of tooling up units to a point where they cost more than two units of gobs, but I'm a fan of survivability over crushing power (if you get to survive, surely in the end you may win, as the stunties do).
In my last battle with my goblins, I've forced myself to take and try the seemingly overpriced river trolls and, for good measure, took 4 of them. Then I watched with dismay that 240pt unit get a combined charge of 2 chaos spawns and a chaos charriot (bloody stupidity, both the trolls' and mine).
Now, nothing I could really do about the charriot impact hits, but I looked with wonder as most of the spawn attacks (and there was like 16 of them) and both horses failed to hit the trolls (-1 to hit, golden ability, I'm kind of taking back the comment about overpriced river trolls, but they need being tried again, my snotlings have managed to beat bloodleters once, doesn't mean they're elite troops). In the end, they only failed to regenerate a couple wounds, and the punishement they dealt in return was, well, what made me think about trying tough guys over strong guys. Considering the dice rolls of the chaos player, would the trolls have been of another kind, half of them would have probably bitten the dust, lost combat, and been an enormous waste of points.
Funilly enough, in this battle I also tried my common goblins, that I had built after letting them spend two years in a closet. Well they got charged by ogres with great weapons (effectively negating their 4+ armour save - this very armour save I built gobs with shields and hand weapons to get ><), they lost the first round of combat but, amazingly enough, they held, and then they won the second round (killing an ogre, mwahahaha) and ran them over). They now have that chaos ogre banner that was in my bits box (nyark).
Once again, another example that resilience (here through numbers) got me farther than brute strenght.
Heeeem... yeah, well, I got a bit carried away, just wanted to say I was going to try black orcs with shields, sorry :p

06-09-2007, 11:04
Even Avian ignores the option in his BO page (doesn't pay off, he says).
Note that I am only against using shields in close combat, for the cost I think it is well worth it to take shields to protect against missile fire. ;)

Now, Chaos Knights are one of the few things you might actually want to use the shields against if you are charged by them, because they are so tough that you aren't likely to do much damage anyway, but that is one of a very short list of cases where using shields pays off.

Not to mention that using shields in such a situation isn't really a good option, merely a slightly less bad one. That is to say that you would do better trying to avoid the few cases where shields pay off altogether.

It is more or less the same thing with Ogres using their ironfists as shields. Yes, there are cases when that is the best option, but those cases are mainly combat you should have stayed completely out of because you are still going to lose them, even if you lose by slightly less. :p

But I am assembling my new Black Orc unit with shields as well, yes.
(The spare drums you get are actually useful as shields if you do some creative cutting and trimming)

06-09-2007, 11:28
Couple things:
The idea of giving them shields, here, is more of a safeguard versus charges (and yeah, missiles, they're the bane of my BO). If I were to get the charge against the chaos knights, well, really, I don't know (I'm not good at mathammer) what I would take, honestly (and, unfortunately for me, chaos knight charges are not something I consider being a rare occurence :p).
It depends if I believe I can win on the first turn or not, to begin with. With that 6 strong unit I'm facing, it's somewhat difficult to say; let's be optimistic and say I'm confident I can beat them: two choppas (S5x2 attacks, knights get a 4+ save), great weapon ( S6, 5+ save)? In either case, the odds seem low to me (and my BO tend to run around w/o a character with them), and the backlash could be hard (knights wound on 3+, no save, horses on 4+ with 6+ save? Every turn? Hitting first on the following turns?). I think I'd take the shields even on charge, in fact.

Mmh, dunno about ironfists. They're most of the time coupled with light armours, and I usually face armies with a majority of S4 minimum troops, so in most cases I'd rather save the points on both ironfists and light armours (if the light armours were default gear, for free, well that would be different, but 3pt per ogre, it rises fast) to get more troops. I admit my first steps with my ogre army are painful, either I win a crushing victory, either it's the most cataclysmic defeat I could picture, soemthing I can only get with catastrophic dice rolls with my greenskins army, so my choices may be questionable (no need to point me to your guide, I'm already spending way too much time reading it/reading it again-again-gain-ain for my own good), but well, trial and error is how best you learn I suppose. Even though errors hurt :p

Anyway, at least, the Blorcs get to conbine their shields with heavy armour (my models will get converted shields based on the warhammer online shields - very easy to do, so it's not as big a project as turning all my common goblins into north goblins with fur capes ala chaos warriors...).

06-09-2007, 14:00
When charging normal Chaos Knights, the most effective combo for the first turn is two choppas and the worst is choppas/shields. In later turns, the choppa/shield combo is slightly less bad than the others, but giving up an advantage in the first round for a minor advantage in the second round, which might not even happen or might be irrelevant, doesn't seem very wise to me.
If you charge in with choppa/shield and fail to break them (more likely since you have chosen the least effective combo), then in the following (probably Chaos) turn, you'll probably get charged by something nasty and routed.

However, should you by some chance get to charge Chosen Chaos Knights, then choppa/shield is less bad than any of the other combos (you may call that "best" if you like ;)). Black Orcs without character aren't going to beat Chosen Knights, though.

As I said above, the problem isn't that the choppa/shield combo isn't better than the other combos in some cases, the problem is that the times that combo is best are those times when the combat is lost whichever combo you choose. So use it only when fleeing isn't an option. :p

06-09-2007, 17:21
Avian, I agree with your comments, but it is often hard to dictate the action when the enemy moves faster than you do.

Urgat, If I take BO(Which I almost never do anymore), I give them shields, as 1 more point for more survivability is not an issue.

Now Gents, I may have been playing this wrong, but if you get the charge in, you can choose to use 2 HTH weapons, as BO are Armed to da Teef, correct?

Also, I have put magnets on the back of my Shields from the Orc Boyz box, so I can swap them out with my units as needed. They stick to the BO ok, but I had to put some small magnets in the arms of my boyz and then paint them green in case I decide to go Shieldless.

06-09-2007, 17:29
Avian, I agree with your comments, but it is often hard to dictate the action when the enemy moves faster than you do.
Not sure I see what you mean... :confused:

Yes, charging Black Orcs can use two choppas and that is indeed the best combo in nearly all cases when you charge, thanks to the strength bonus. Two WS4 S5 attacks per model puts a dent in nearly anything.

06-09-2007, 19:35
Also, I have put magnets on the back of my Shields from the Orc Boyz box, so I can swap them out with my units as needed. They stick to the BO ok, but I had to put some small magnets in the arms of my boyz and then paint them green in case I decide to go Shieldless.

I won't need that, I still have my old 20 BO unit (the metal models, plus the 6 "twin brothers" plastic ones, heavily converted though - I hate having two identical models in the same unit, so I switch weapons, I cut or add horns, etc), that will do a fine unit without shields. I'm still rather fond of these old minis, actually, shame they're a bit too small compared to the other orcs now, but heck, they still look fine in my eyes.

06-09-2007, 20:24
Urgat, I also have 52 of the old B.O. 20 w/Great Weapons, the rest w/2 Hand Weapons and 2 command groups, this is why the magnets cling to them more easily :)

06-09-2007, 20:33
ive played a 2k list that fields 50 BOs with grimgor.

Bos are nails. I won.. but only because he was a noob (whos been playing fantasy 4x longer then me :P)

15-09-2007, 12:28
Well there you go, I tried them (against chaos mortals)

Well, they got involved in two fights, first one, I got the charge on marauders with great weapons, so I chose the two choppas options ( 6 marauders dead, one BO dead in return -forgot to kill the champion- marauders break, flee, get run down).
Second fight, though, saw them charged by chaos warriors (hand weapons, shields, not chosen, and, interestingly enough, exactly same number). So I chose the shields:
chaos warriors didn't manage a single kill, well, I didn't either, BUT this should have won me the game, if I didn't forget to have my orcs who just rallied my following turn to flank charge the chaos warriors on my last turn -last of the battle. Well I forgot, but the BO stood there for 3 combat phases, and finally won the fight by one or two. Chaos warriors didn't break, but they never managed to break through the save anymore than I did.
For such a lentghy close combat phase, my BO did fairly well, they were bound to strike last if they had taken any choice, and I'm fairly sure the chaos warriors would have won the combat w/o the 4+ save, I got to save more than a few wounds. So the conclusion is that now I'll always field BO with shields, and will not hesistate to use them if I'm charged.