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NecronBob
16-12-2007, 04:39
Several people assisted me in getting an army together in this thread, and I've decided to post here in order to share what I've learned (as well as get advice on how to play better): http://warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=112031&highlight=necronbob

As a long time 40k player, I have some inkling of how things work, but Fantasy works a whole lot differently. Tonight, I had my first two games: a 500 point battle against a night goblin army and a 2000 point army against Brettonians (each played by a different player -- the night goblin player was brand new to his list. He's thinking of starting a goblin or orc/goblin army and wanted to get the feel with smaller points):

For the 500 point battle, the following forces faced off:

Night Goblins
Level 2 Shaman
20 Speargoblins
20 Archers
3 Fanatics
5 Spider Riders
1 Troll

High Elves
Level 1 Mage w/ jewel of dusk
15 Spear Elves w/full command
5 Silver Helms
10 Archers

Set-up:

The goblins set up situated in the center-left of his zone. The archers mounted a hill in that area while the speargoblins situated themselves at the base of the hill. The troll was left of the the bulk of the army, while the spider riders approached from the far left flank. The shaman skulked along behind the spears.

For their part, the high elves set up nearly directly across and in a similar formation. The only difference was that the Silver Helms were much closer in and were situated to the right behind a building. This set-up proved to be a mistake as you will see.

Turn 1:
Not much activity here. The high elves had the first turn and downed a two goblins at long range. The silver helms took the point rushing towards the troll in hopes of taking the great beast out, but the positioning behind the building meant that they would have to take an awkward wheel next turn. The mage cast his Shield of Saphery spell on the knights in hopes of keeping them safe.

The goblin turn was less exciting. While the archers squabbled on the hill, the rest of the force moved forward.

Turn 2:
Poor generalship put me in a tight spot here. As the silver helms came around the edge of building, I didn't think that I could reach the goblins with a charge, so I just moved forward. The spider riders were closing fast on the left, so I wheeled my spears in order to protect the archers back (thinking the silver helms could hold this side). Once again, I landed the shield of sapphery on the knights and the archers continued to chip away at the block of spears.

As the silverhelms continued to close, the goblin player chortled with glee. Three fanatics dropped in front of the speargoblins. Two of these were pointed directly at the knights while the other shot towards the spearelves. Luckily only one of the fanatics reached the silverhelms (the other came up just short while the spearelves were well out of range. The damage was not as bad as it could be as only one knight fell to the whirling chain. Unfortunately, the shaman followed this up with a magic missile at the same unit which killed two knights and, in a moment of bad luck, sent them fleeing. Elsewhere, the troll and spiders marched ever closer, while the goblin archers were overcome with rage and charged off the hill towards the hated elves.

Turn 3:
My bad luck continued, and the silver helms failed their rally roll and proceeded right off the table. With only the spearelves and the archers, things were looking rough. The spearelves moved themselves in position to block the spiders; they were within charge range, but I wanted to let him charge me. The archers fired across towards the speargoblins, ripping into the unity, dropping four models. The mage found himself outmatched by the goblin who dispelled his shield. Luckily, he was able to get a drain magic off, which would hopefully protect us from other bolts.

The fanatics were apparently worn out as one of them strangled himself in his chain while the second charged directly into the third. Strangely the goblin player grinned with satisfaction as the two killed each other, and he seemed even more pleased when the archers anger towards the elves abated and turned back on their comrades (the archers have now rolled 1, 6, 1 on animosity if you are scoring at home). The riders tried to charge the spearelves, but failed to overcome their fear. Likewise, the areas magic had become so drained that the shaman was unable to get a spell off. All told, a very unsatisfying round for the greenskins (although the troll marched ever closer to the now undefended archers).

Round 4:
The archers had something big and green bearing down on them, so they turned away from their favorite target (the speargoblins) and focused their attacks on the incoming troll. Indeed, it was an excellent round of shooting, but the lucky troll regenerated all wounds save one. On the left flank, the spearelves grew tired of waiting on the spider riders, so they charged. Unable to face their fears, the spider riders turned tail and ran for the hills (and run they did, shooting across the board at amazing speed). The magic phase had been the same as last round: a dispelled shield followed by a drain magic.

The goblins' poor luck continued as the spider riders failed to rally and continued their mad dash right off the left edge of the table. The archers were finally able to act and began to move forward hoping to get within range of their foes. Smelling blood, the troll charged forward, while the goblins marched within range for a turn five charge. Standing and shooting against the fierce beast, the archers managed to inflict another wound to the troll. However, he still reached their lines, and I feared the worst. However, the archers made good use of "Always Strikes First," somehow managing to inflict a single, and mortal, wound. The fearsome beast fell to the ground before it could take a swipe. The shaman continued to be pinned down by drain magic.

Turn 5:

Not much action for me this round. The spearelves tried to get themselves turned around to get back into the fight. The archers knocked down a couple of speargoblins, while the mage reversed his normal order. This round, he managed to shield the archers but failed to get off a drain magic (thanks to the shaman who changed his dispel target).

The night goblin spearman were undeterred by the death of their troll ally. They overcame their fear of the elves and charged headlong into the archers. Without a target, the goblin archers continued to march forward, while the shaman directed his magic missile at the spear elves, killing four of them! The archers beat back the goblins, once again using ASF to great effect. The poor goblins only managed one kill to the archers three. These casualties, coupled with four rounds of missile fire had whittled the poor goblin spearman down to nothing. Fed up with this fight, they turned and fled away (much as their spider rider comrades had done).

Turn 6:

Although the battle had looked ugly early, the elven mage felt good about his army's chances by this point. The only unit still advancing was the archers, so the elves pretty much controlled the table. The spearelves had nothing to do, so they hunkered down behind a small chapel, hoping to avoid the shaman's blast. The archers chose to shoot at the archers in a move that proved to be a poor one. Perhaps because of his overconfidence, the mage failed at both of his casts.

Unhappy with the state of his army, the shaman decided to throw everything at the archers in the hopes of breaking them. As his goblins continued to flee, his magic missle and the archers arrows pounded the archers; however, despite several causalities, the archers held their ground, bringing the game to a close and winning the High Elf leader a minor victory over the Night Goblins.

Some things I learned:
* The jewel of dusk was probably a very good buy, and the free drain magic is very nice. The two of these together allowed my lowly mage to try both of his spells at 2 dice. Drain Magic was huge at keeping the very deadly shaman under control, while the ward save was nice as well.
* My 40k background hurt me a bit as I didn't realize how difficult it was to turn ranks around. Thus, my spearelves probably didn't do as much as they should have. Moving them back to the goblin riders effectively took them out of the fight.
* Fanatics are both nasty and fun at the same time. I think the goblin player is now planning to grab another box. If the fanatics had done better, I would have been in some real trouble. Certainly, either the fanatics or the shaman were the goblin MVPs.
* I was surprised at how well the archers did. Indeed, they did most of the killing. I was pondering taking two units in my larger game. I'm glad I didn't because these guys didn't do much against the Bretts. They were, however, the MVP of this game.
* I didn't really tinker with my 2k list because of this battle. It was a small battle and the night goblins were pretty fragile. Even so, it was a very close game and could have gone any way.

That's it for now. Any advice on how to improve my performance would be useful. I'll post the Brettonian battle report tomorrow (it turned out to be an amazingly bloody battle).

Just Tony
16-12-2007, 15:03
At 500 I'm not entirely sure there was anything you could really have changed. I'm not a big fan of tiny units of heavy cav like that, and I would have used the points for probably Shadow Warriors. March blocking could have done wonders, AND brought the fanatics out closer to the enemy lines

SevenSins
16-12-2007, 15:44
nice going, and looking forward to the larger battle

NecronBob
18-12-2007, 04:40
Here's a quick report for my second battle. This time, I had to face the Brettonians. Unfortunately, I threw out my copy of his list, but I'll recreate it from memory as well as I can. My point in putting these reports up is that I need some help learning the game and how to use troops effectively, so please offer any insights that you have.

High Elves
Archmage (Lvl 4) jewel of dusk
Mage (Lvl 2) ring of fury
Korhil

10 Archers
15 Spearelves with Full Command

14 Swordmasters Standard and Musician
14 White Lions Standard of Sorcery and Musician
6 Dragon Princes
1 Lion Chariot
7 Shadow Warriors
2 RBT

Brettonians
Lord
Battle Standard Bearer
Damsel w/ two dispel scrolls
Paladin

2 Units of Knight Errants
1 Unit of Grail Knights
1 Unit of Questing Knights
1 Unit of Knights of the Realms

13 Archers
Trebuchet
1 Unit with Reliquary
3 Pegasus Knights

Set-up
This was my first battle with a lot of points, so I was a little unsure of how to set everything up. I ended up centering my lines on the right end of the board around the spearman. I put Korhil with them and the white lions to their left. I placed the Dragon Princes behind a building angled towards the spearman. The swordmasters went to the far left, backed up by the chariot. On the hill behind the white lions went the archers and both bolt throwers. I was a little unsure of where to put the mages, so I put one in a building to the far left and another right behind the spearelves. The shadow warriors skulked behind a hill near the Bret archers, awaiting their opportunity to strike.

For his part, the Brettonian general set the Knights of the Realm directly across from my spearelves and stuck a unit of Knight Errants on either side. The trebuchet was placed on a hill to my far left almost directly across from the house my archmage had made his command center. The reliquary centered his line, with the archers to my far left. The Grail Knights faced the white lions and the Questing Knights were way over by themselves on the left.

During my magic phase, I took Lore of Metal on the Archmage and rolled well, getting the bolt and both armor powered damage spells. The mage took shield of saphery and fury of khaine (to go with the one in his ring).

Round 1
I took the first turn, as the Bret player passed in order to get his ward save. I moved the lions over towards the swordmasters to support them against the grail knights. I got a little impatient with the chariot and moved it around behind a building very close to the questing knight. Everything else stayed put (I actually forgot about my poor shadow warriors).

The magic phase was a bust, due to poor target placement (the bound spell got knocked out by a magic resistance banner) and poor rolling (I couldn't get a 12 on five dice with the archmage). Nonetheless, the bolt throwers did well, eliminating two questing knights.

The Bret player moved his pegasi around the building that the archmage was in, setting up a perfect flank charge on my spears. Everything else simply move forward in an attempt to get in charge range. Luckily for me, the trebuchet misfired, saving me any casualties during this round (they would all come next round).

Round 2
Perhaps it was the impressiveness of the model, I don't know. Whatever it was, I decided to fire my chariot into the flank of the Questing Knights with no support. The white lions and swordmasters declared a charge against the Grail Knights but were out of range, so they just inched a little closer. The shadow warriors remembered to move (but forgot to shoot!), and the archers and bolt throwers knocked out another Knight Errant and a Knight of the Realm.

The dice were with me during the magic phase, and I did a little damage. Most importantly, the Bret general was forced to use both dispel scrolls in order to save his Pegasi some nasty damage.

Although it was a stupid move, my lion chariot did very well. It smashed into the flank, knocking out enough knights to prevent any return swings. Unfortunately, it was not enough to send the Brets running (although he did comment on how sick the chariot was -- he muttered something about it being stupid that lions were strength five).

The Brets were itching for the start of their round, as things were looking grim for me. Four units were set up to charge the spearelves, and depending on which he decided to use, he could end up overrunning half of my army. Luckily, he choose to charge with the 3 units of knights directly in front of the spears, leaving the Pegasi to attempt to circle behind the building to get at my Dragon Princes. This was probably fortunate because a route from that direction could have sent him across into my lions. Speaking of the lions, he also chose not to charge me with the Grail Knights (I think because he feared a counter charge by the Swordmasters).

As it was, the spearelves were toast. Not even Korhil could save them, and I only managed to down two knights out of the huge mob that swept over me. In addition, I learned why it was bad to put you casters behind units, as the Questing Knights charged into my mage, killing him as well. He had sent one of the Knights Errants after my fleeing spears as well (this unit gobbled up one of my bolt throwers as it rumbled by), leaving the other sitting in perfect charge range for my Princes (he probably figured the Pegasi had their back).

Over on the other font, the lion knocked the unit of knights from six to two before being killed, not a bad showing for a unit that I misused.

Oh, and the trebuchet misfired again.

Round Three
I won't lie. It looked pretty bad. Being a new player, I expected to lose, but at this point, it really looked as if he could whipe me off the board in one round. Fortunately, my archmage and Dragon Princes had a few things to say about that.

As everyone expected, my Dragon Princes charged into the exposed flank of his Knights Errant. I chose to stand my ground with the white lions, using the bolt throwers to get the Grail Knights attention. Perhaps in an effort to avenge his fallen student, the archmage proceeded to throw everything into the Pegasus Knights, eventually whipping them from the table. I think this really upset the Brets' plan.

For their part, the Princes destroyed the Knights Errant, and I was pleased to see that they actually ran away. I pursued and cut them down. At this point, things looked much better.

Oh, and the Shadow Warriors moved closer to the archers and managed to kill one with their bows.

The Bret player was a little disheartened. He had smelled a massacre but now found things tightening up. The two units of knights that had pursued my spears could only turn themselves around. However, the Grail Knights had had enough and charged the white lions, seeking to slow down the archmage by eliminating his Banner of Sorcery. For their part, the Lions did their job. They held their ground, but they didn't really do any damage in return. I smiled, knowing that the Sword Masters could take care of that next round. (and the trebuchet missed this round).

Round Four

So, this was going to be a big round. I moved my archers out to screen the back of my Dragon Princes. The swordmasters did charged into the flank of the Grail Knights, while the archers and bolt thrower concentrated on the Knights of the Realms who had turned themselves around to pursue the Princes. The Archmage once again unleased a spectacular display of magic, destroying the remaining Knights of the Realms (including the Damsel).

I was really disappointed by the swordmasters. I had expected big things, but they didn't kill a single model. It was so bad that even with the flank charge and the two units to one, combat resolution came out tied (my musician put me on top, but alas he would not flee).

Oh, and the Shadow Warrior charged the archers, lost a couple to the stand and shoot, and copied the swordmasters' result. They fled and were run down. I realized that I had no idea how to use this unit.

The Bret player started with a charge of the two remaining Questing Knights into the back of the swordmasters. Otherwise, the only things that he had to do were some moving and missing with a trebuchet.

Combat was also very anti-climatic. Bolstered by another unit of knights (and a lord), the swordmasters and white lions both were defeated and run down. The Bret player actually cheered when the Banner of Sorcery was finally eliminated.

Round Five

Ugh. Things had been looking up, but now, with the loss of all of my infantry units, I felt like my goose was cooked. Once again, however, the Princes and the Archmage came to my rescue. The swordmasters had fled towards the Princes, forcing the Questing Knights (well Knight, there was only one left with the Lord) to move within charge range. The Grail Knights were out of the picture, as it had taken 11 inches to catch the white lions, who had fled straight backwards (the remaining BT tried to soften them but failed).

Once again, the Archmage protected the Princes back, coupling with the archers to wipe out the remaining Knights Errant (Lore of Metal is brutal on Brets). I was a little worried about the Princes against the Knight and Lord. As expected, the eliminated the Knight and even inflicted a wound on the lord. However, I cringed as the Bret player rolled the Lords attack as his sword allowed no armor saves. Fortunately, he rolled poorly and inflicted no wounds. It was my turn to cheer as the Princes managed to finish him off in the next round.

The Bret's round was slow, he brought his Grail Knights around and charged the archers. I debated on fleeing with them, but they were so close to the edge, I chose to stand and fight, there were only three left anyway. Their bravery was unrewarded, however, as many died and the rest fled away anyway (bringing the Grail Knights, the final unit of Brettonian Knights on the table, face to face with the Archmage).

Otherwise, the action was limited. The reliquary finally came around the hill and approached my Princes. The trebuchet fired a rock at my archmage who had left the safety of the house to fire at the Errants. The rock missed by a fraction of an inch.

Round Six

As we surveyed the field, there wasn't a whole lot left.He had his Questing Knights, his archers, the trebuchet and the Reliquary. I had my Archmage, one bolt thrower, and my Dragon Princes.

Hoping to eliminate victory points, I sent the Princes after the reliquary, hitting it in the flank in order to eliminate their shields. I killed quite a few, but not enough to knock them down. The Archmage moved forward to get out of the Grail Knights' line of sight before unleashing another spell storm. It wasn't impressive. although it did drop another knight.

During the Bretts round, all we really had to do was finish the Dragon Prince vs. Reliquary fight. The Princes won, knocking them down to exactly 50%. Despite all of their action, the Princes remained the only unit not to sustain some sort of casualty during the fierce battle.

Scoring

There wasn't much left on the table at all. The only things still standing was my archmage and the Dragon Princes and his trebuchet, a depleted unit of Grail Knights, half of the Reliquary, and the Battle Standard Bearer.

In the end, it was a draw, although the points slightly favored him. I left the table feeling like it could have been a lot worse but knowing that it had been a good learning experience.

What I Learned
* The Lion Chariot is very powerful. Now, I just need to figure out how to support it.
* I have no idea what to do with Shadow Warriors. However, it is obvious that they don't belong in HTH fighting.
* I nearly lost the game in set-up. I need to pay better attention to where a fleeing unit is likely to end up.
* White Lions are better than Swordmasters. The potential is of course greater with the SMs, but the Lions survivability puts them over the top.
* I need to figure out where to put my mages. I was lucky to have had the house, but most armies will have foot soldiers to go in and get him. Of course, I do now know that putting one right behind a unit is bad news.
* I probably gave him too many points in banners. How do you decide when to add them to the unit (CR vs. VP).

That's it! I put these things up, hopping for some veteran advice on how to fix some of these deficiencies, so please, give me some insight!

The Adept
18-12-2007, 06:29
I play dark elves rather than high elves, but the armies are very similar - expensive, hard hitting and T3, so I'll try to help.

The chariot first; chariots are great units. High toughness (something we lack), impact hits, fear (for lions and cold ones) etc. What lets them down is low damage output when not charging, and only being US4 (and therefore unable to break ranks and claim flank/rear).

Try mounting a character on it (if you are allowed). He'll add killing power (both on the charge and off it) and will give you that magic US5. Then hit flanks, giving you a CR swing of 4 (-3 ranks, +1 for flank).

Or, support it properly. Because it can't march, infantry can keep up. However, they make a poor support unit for the chariot because they can't match its long charge range. Try running the chariot with your Dragon Princes or other heavy cav - together, they should be able to smash units apart.

Thirdly, you could use the chariot as a counter attack unit. Hold it back, near you infantry. When the enemy get engaged, hit them in the flank with the chariot. This works best if you mount a character on it, giving you the US5.


Now, the shadow warriors. These sound similar to my shades (skirmish, scout, ranged attack). These guys work well as march blockers. That is, get them within 8" of as many enemy units as possible, while remaining out of charge arcs. This will stop them marching, giving you extra time to shoot/magic the hell out of them.

Shooting at weak units is good to - you should be at close range thanks to scouting, giving you a fighting chance to take out war machine crews - or at least kill one or two, which slows the rate of fire of many war machines.

Thirdly, having the scouts makes it difficult for your opponent to keep mages out of units - if he does, you might shoot/charge him to death. But watch out for magic missile while mage hunting, beacuse the penalties to hit skirmishers (in cover!) don't help at all against magic missiles.


Hope this helps, even if you do play High Elves!

Malorian
18-12-2007, 15:15
I have to say that you are lucky that the bret player was so stupid. I almost couldn't belive it when he was hit in the flank by a chariot, and almost got his grail knights charged on the second turn... shameful...

That being said, it was also your first game and I'm glad you got eased into it. There's nothing worse than trying something new and getting smashed.

NecronBob
18-12-2007, 15:35
Try mounting a character on it (if you are allowed). He'll add killing power (both on the charge and off it) and will give you that magic US5. Then hit flanks, giving you a CR swing of 4 (-3 ranks, +1 for flank).

I was a little apprehensive about putting a character in the chariot. I figured that it'd make it too easy to kill him (although Korhil ended up being killed easily anyway). Do you think that it'd be better to tool up a cheaper character for the chariot than to put Korhil and his fear into the spears?



Now, the shadow warriors. These sound similar to my shades (skirmish, scout, ranged attack). These guys work well as march blockers. That is, get them within 8" of as many enemy units as possible, while remaining out of charge arcs. This will stop them marching, giving you extra time to shoot/magic the hell out of them.

Shooting at weak units is good to - you should be at close range thanks to scouting, giving you a fighting chance to take out war machine crews - or at least kill one or two, which slows the rate of fire of many war machines.

Thirdly, having the scouts makes it difficult for your opponent to keep mages out of units - if he does, you might shoot/charge him to death. But watch out for magic missile while mage hunting, beacuse the penalties to hit skirmishers (in cover!) don't help at all against magic missiles.


Good ideas here. I actually wasn't really sure what march blocking was until this. I think my next game is against Empire, and I've seen him let his Wizard run around by himself. Maybe I'll try to use the Shadow Warriors to pick him off (Maybe I'll use to units of 6 next time).

NecronBob
18-12-2007, 15:40
I have to say that you are lucky that the bret player was so stupid. I almost couldn't belive it when he was hit in the flank by a chariot, and almost got his grail knights charged on the second turn... shameful...

That being said, it was also your first game and I'm glad you got eased into it. There's nothing worse than trying something new and getting smashed.

I wouldn't say stupid; he seemed a little apprehensive about the new elves. I think he'd heard rumors and was expecting everything to be uber. However, if he'd held back one of those three knight units to answer the Dragon Prince's counter-charge, he'd have gotten his massacre. Actually, the Pegasus Knights could have swept from the right flank and with the Knights of the Realm would have probably broken the spears, allowing him to charge into my first Bolt Thrower and then into my archers and then into my other Bolt Thrower. It would have been like a quadruple jump in checkers, but it was a learning experience for everyone.

Like you said, I'm glad he didn't see it because it wouldn't have been too much fun to get smashed.

sainthale1988
19-12-2007, 00:11
always good to see new players (shame about HE but i'm not complaining)
you've got to remember everying in the HE is highly specialised, and in the case of shadow warriors they are an anti skermisher unit which also does the standard warmachine/ march blocking routine
keep Koirhil with the spears (who i would suggest you increaes in number to at least 20)
as a general rule of thumb sticking mages in units of archers is a good move (they should have good lines of sight, and will give 'meat sheild' protection)
in WHFB its best to have at least 3 blocks of combat infantry, you at the moment have 2: the spears and white lions (which i agree are just dirty for 15pts an elf) i would suggest you get another
other than that keep it up!

NecronBob
19-12-2007, 00:36
always good to see new players (shame about HE but i'm not complaining)
you've got to remember everying in the HE is highly specialised, and in the case of shadow warriors they are an anti skermisher unit which also does the standard warmachine/ march blocking routine
keep Koirhil with the spears (who i would suggest you increaes in number to at least 20)
as a general rule of thumb sticking mages in units of archers is a good move (they should have good lines of sight, and will give 'meat sheild' protection)
in WHFB its best to have at least 3 blocks of combat infantry, you at the moment have 2: the spears and white lions (which i agree are just dirty for 15pts an elf) i would suggest you get another
other than that keep it up!

Good advice. I kind of like the High Elves. I had originally planned to get either Empire or Orcs, but they were both covered by other players in the group so I ended up going with choice #3. I'm pretty happy after two fights.

Good idea on mages with archers. I'll also look into working in another block of troops. Any ideas on what to do about banners? It seems like they are too many VP if they are put in every unit.

Just Tony
19-12-2007, 01:33
As far as banners go, I put them in every hammer and anvil unit. NEVER in a ballistic unit, and I'm kind of torn on fast cav command. On Reavers, it seems like it's destined to simply net your opponent VPs. I tend to keep my units of infantry at 20 total, regardless of which type, and my archers in two ranks of ten on a hill. Maximizes shooting, and the RBTs don't need the extra boost of the position. Unless, of course, the hill is big enough.

You ought to consider Great Eagles. Excellent march blockers, great at hunting mages, and are annoying enough to distract, if not defeat, war machine crews.

Oh, and putting two ranks of five heavy cav with full command has always worked for me. If the back rank hits combat intact, bonus. If not, then they soak up the wounds leaving the front rank combat capable. Also, toss a BSB in that unit with the Battle Banner. D6 combat res in cav is usually the extra push you need to break units...

The Adept
19-12-2007, 07:18
I don't believe I missed the best support you can have for a chariot in my last post - another chariot! It can keep up, charge the same distance. With two, you can cover two charge arcs, making a large area unpleasant for your opponent. And it both charge the same target (fairly easy with their narrow fronts), the 2D6 (+2 if scythed) impact hits can be enough to break the unit, even without the crew/steeds attacks!

sainthale1988
19-12-2007, 11:35
i agree with adept, chariots always work best in pairs ( i have 2 teams of 2 for my beastmen, and their rubbish compared to lion chariots)
put standards only in block combat units. ( i stick them in my empire knights as well, but they need the extra point of CR)
i reality you should avoid fights you cant win