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Elyas
18-04-2005, 05:12
Hey all, I just created two lists for VC that I need critiqued. Now, I know that a lot of people say you should take a bunch of fast units (Dire Wolves, Black Knights, etc.) and maybe some ghouls (they're the only core unit with a decent stat-line for the points), but I decided to go heavy on magic and field a slow, shambling, "traditional" undead army. I put my strat at the end, so please read that before critiquing.

2000-point army list:

Necromancer Lord: Level 4, Wristbands of Black Gold, Staff of Damnation

Necromancer: Level 2, Power Familiar

Necromancer: Level 2, Power Stone, Dispel Scroll

Necromancer: Level 2, Power Stone, Dispel Scroll

Skeletons (20): Light armor, Spear, Musician, Standard Bearer

Skeletons (20): Light armor, Spear, Musician, Standard Bearer

Dire Wolves (5)

Dire Wolves (5)

Grave Guard (25): Shields, Musician, Standard Bearer, Banner of Doom

Fell Bats (10)

Banshee

Total Points: 1993


3000-points army list:

Vampire Count (Von Carstein): Level 2, Ring of the Night, Aura of Dark Majesty, Wolf Form

Necromancer Lord: Level 4, Wristbands of Black Gold, Staff of Damnation

Necromancer: Level 2, Power Familiar

Necromancer: Level 2, Power Stone, Dispel Scroll

Necromancer: Level 2, Power Stone, Dispel Scroll

Necromancer: Level 2, Power Stone, Dispel Scroll

Skeletons (20): Light armor, Spear, Musician, Standard Bearer

Skeletons (20): Light armor, Spear, Musician, Standard Bearer

Skeletons (20): Light armor, Spear, Musician, Standard Bearer

Skeletons (20): Light armor, Spear, Musician, Standard Bearer

Dire Wolves (6)

Dire Wolves (6)

Grave Guard (29): Shields, Musician, Standard Bearer, Banner of Doom

Fell Bats (10)

Banshee

Total Points: 3000

My strat is the more or less the same for both lists. The plan is to have a wall of undead advance towards the enemy (all the skeleton units in a line with grave guard at the center) with dire wolves guarding their flanks (and maybe doing a little flanking action one I've pinned the enemy units). Even though my dire wolves will be out of range for marching, they will still be able to keep up with my main line (9" regular move beats an 8" march). I brought fully equipped skeleton units along because then I'll get the most out of raising more of 'em :D , and I can always raise new units zombies later on (which is much easier than raising new units of skeletons). The Fell Bats will take out any war machine annoyances and then hopefully be able to tie up any enemy archers/gunners as well (maybe even coming back to do some rear charges). The Banshee will float around behind my main line singing at the enemy's big core units that might outnumber me (but usually have low leadership).

A quick note on the second list: I brought a vampire count along for several reasons. First of all, 3000 points will give my opponent a lot more options for tooled-up characters, and I don't want some uber-character running right through my main line and into my necros. Secondly, Aura of Dark Majesty will really help since my main line will need to stay together to be effective. Thirdly, Wolf Form will allow my to pounce on any flyers who get funny ideas about killing my necros, and maybe help stall/kill any fast flanking units who make it past my wolves. As I wanted to keep the focus on magic, however, I decided not to equip my count with any offensive weapons.

Wargamejunkie
18-04-2005, 05:21
Well, it looks to me you are going magic crazy with the VC, so you should go balls to the walls and drop the count. I would also drop the power stones and give one the "Thriller Book" aka. book of arkhan. In the 3000 just take another LV4 necro.

As far as generals you cant go wrong with the Cloak and the amulet.

I tend to field my with just huge mobs of zombies, and just beat them out with rear and side charges.

If it was my army I would drop the grave guard, and the bats down to 3-4, then buy hordes of zombies. If you want so killy you can always take another banshee or black coach.

Elyas
18-04-2005, 20:42
I was tempted to just take another lvl 4 necro, but there was/is one big bonus about the count: aura of dark majesty. With a longer line of troops, I think the extra 6" will prove quite beneficial, as I don't want my line to shamble THAT slowly.

I was also tempted to take cloak on my main necro, but decided to save some points with the wristbands. I think they're more effective for their points cost, as I won't be going into cc with my main caster now will I?

I chose skeletons over zombies not because of kill ability, but survivability. Light armor and shields gives them 5+ vs shooting and 4+ in cc. It also makes them more worthwhile to summon. Also, zombies are really easy to raise, and my plan actually is to raise a lot of zombies for flank/rear charges.

I'll consider the other stuff. Thanx for the comments.

Stouty
18-04-2005, 21:26
Your main problem os your lack of the ability to kill anything, 2 nice big units of knights would demolish all but your grave guard, and i doubt they could stand by their own.
And guess what? Brettonian armies tend to have more than 2 units of heavy cavalry to screw you up.
I like what i see but.

Elyas
18-04-2005, 23:29
That was exactly my first impression of the list Stouty. In fact, that was one main reason I threw in the grave guard (and even considered giving them halberds).

However, I think that I'll try instead to win through combat res instead of pure kills (i.e. ranks, outnumbering, standard). Hopefully, my skeleton units will be large enough by the time they are charged that they will be able to sustain casualties from the initial charge and still have an extra rank or two for combat res. After the first round, the knights should be much more limited (no more +2S for lances), so they won't get as much combat res. Just before the charge, my plan is to summon a few zombie units in flanking positions so that they'll be able to help out after the initial charge. My magic phase should bolster my skeleton units to replace any lost in the previous combat, so turn two (after the charge) should see more or less the same sized skeleton unit plus one or two flanking zombies taking on a unit of knights with no charge bonus. Throw in a couple of Hellish Vigors, and that knight unit looks a lot less convincing!

In the case of multiple charges, I'll be summoning lots of auxiliary zombie units to either divert charges or get in flanking charges. If I can divert one or two units of knights, I'll be able to take one that's left as above. If the supporting knights don't take the bait, I'll have some nice flanking charges in for next turn. Don't forget that I'll also have wolves on my flanks and bats set up for flank and rear charges respectively.

If worst comes to worst, I could always use a gaze of nagash or curse of years to soften up the unit before it charges (maybe even use my banshee)...

Wargamejunkie
19-04-2005, 00:01
Well I am just speaking from personal experience, always take the super save(mists and shadows & amulet) because if he dies your whole army goes to crap. Second the extended leader ship is nice but for a unit to march all they have to do is be with 12" of a character. I tend to take a unit of skeletons to hide my leader near, then as said the rest zombies, because they are so dirt cheap to raise. What you have next if a couple units of wolves to hit units in the flank and maybe get a kill off, but mainly to negate ranks. So you will have 3 ranks+banner+outnumber+flank attack+any kills the wolves get and they will have kills+banner, which means you will almost always win the combat then get to run them down with the fast calvary.

I personally would only keep 1 unit of the skeletons then, bump the bats down to 4 s, then take a Lv4 necro instead of the count, with all those extra points I would take 6*30 zombies with full command then 8 more wolves.

I have yet to find a problem with any army fielding this basic concept, with the undead your biggest weapon is fear and auto breaking, so throw them zombies to pin them down and hit them in the flank and rear with wolves or raised units.

Oh also you cant use the spears and get the +1 save in H2h, its either use the spears or the hand weapons so I personally would drop them.

Elyas
19-04-2005, 01:20
Well I am just speaking from personal experience, always take the super save(mists and shadows & amulet) because if he dies your whole army goes to crap. Second the extended leader ship is nice but for a unit to march all they have to do is be with 12" of a character. I tend to take a unit of skeletons to hide my leader near, then as said the rest zombies, because they are so dirt cheap to raise. What you have next if a couple units of wolves to hit units in the flank and maybe get a kill off, but mainly to negate ranks. So you will have 3 ranks+banner+outnumber+flank attack+any kills the wolves get and they will have kills+banner, which means you will almost always win the combat then get to run them down with the fast calvary.

I personally would only keep 1 unit of the skeletons then, bump the bats down to 4 s, then take a Lv4 necro instead of the count, with all those extra points I would take 6*30 zombies with full command then 8 more wolves.

I have yet to find a problem with any army fielding this basic concept, with the undead your biggest weapon is fear and auto breaking, so throw them zombies to pin them down and hit them in the flank and rear with wolves or raised units.

Oh also you cant use the spears and get the +1 save in H2h, its either use the spears or the hand weapons so I personally would drop them.

Uh, I think you got one of the rules mixed up buddy. The VC book says "undead units/characters can't march unless they begin their movement phase within 12" of the general. If they do, they can march during that movement phase and all standard rules for marching do apply". Also, I don't know what you'd use the extended leadership for anyway?

You're right about the spears and shields though. I forgot that it only works with hand weapons, so there goes that idea.

I like the idea of massed zombies now since spears and shields can't be used together. However, since zombies are so much cheaper, I will be able to field a lot more of them, increasing my battle line drastically. Wouldn't this increase the need for Aura of Dark Majesty, since I would need the extra range to have my whole battle line march? Also, how do you field your wolves (unit sizes, ranks, etc.)?

Wargamejunkie
19-04-2005, 03:16
Durrrrr, I must have been thinking about the crubling thing. Well I tend to use the wolves in units of about 7. The trick I found is let them come crashing into you, then when they are stuck in the tarpit, you raise up all your minions. So in essence you inch forward at your own pace, if you need a unit to sweep around the side you bust out your Vanhels Macabre and send them up 8 inches. What I sometimes like it to take a Count(go with the nectarch) and take the Awakening , Master of the black arts, and forbidden lore,then give him the wristbands of black gold or staff of damnation. Have him tucked in the middle of two units of zombies about 2 inches back so he is totaly free from all assualts, then with his 24 inch range Invocation that can raise D6+D3+1 zombies at a min. So if they warmachines poof what do you know zombie right in front.

Elyas
19-04-2005, 04:02
What about these two lists:

2000-point list:

Characters:

Necromancer Lord: Level 4, Wristbands of Black Gold, Staff of Damnation, Book of Arkhan

Necromancer: Level 2, Power Familiar

Necromancer: Level 2, Power Stone, Dispel Scroll

Necromancer: Level 2, Power Stone, Dispel Scroll

Core:

Zombies (25): Full Command

Zombies (25): Full Command

Zombies (25): Full Command

Zombies (25): Full Command

Zombies (25): Full Command

Dire Wolves (6)

Dire Wolves (6)

Special:

Fell Bats (5)

Fell Bats (5)

Rare:

Banshee

Total Points: 2000


3000-points list:

Characters:

Necromancer Lord: Level 4, Cloak of Mists and Shadows, Obsidian Amulet

Necromancer Lord: Level 4, Wristbands of Black Gold, Book of Arkhan, Staff of Damnation

Necromancer: Level 2, Power Familiar

Necromancer: Level 2, Power Stone, Dispel Scroll

Necromancer: Level 2, Power Stone, Dispel Scroll

Necromancer: Level 2, Power Stone, Dispel Scroll

Core:

Zombies (25): Full Command

Zombies (25): Full Command

Zombies (25): Full Command

Zombies (25): Full Command

Zombies (25): Full Command

Zombies (25): Full Command

Zombies (25): Full Command

Dire Wolves (10)

Dire Wolves (10)

Special:

Fell Bats (6)

Fell Bats (6)

Rare:

Banshee

Banshee

Total Points: 3000

Wargamejunkie
19-04-2005, 16:10
Well, I like generally like both the lists, I would try to add a banshees to both, maybe by dropping the fell bats a couple. The reason, I this allows you to ignore armour saves, the one problem you do have, and it has been in the erratta that you can shoot into hand to hand with them. So you hit them with your zombies and just start screaming away.

In the 3000

Drop a couple of power stones and give the power familiar to a Lv2, then give you guy the obsideon amulet, this makes you immune to all mundane weapons cannon balls and such and with the amulet you have MR1 and a 4+ ward save against magic items.

Elyas
19-04-2005, 21:39
I couldn't find a good way to alter the 2k points list, so I left it like that (I want to win by combat res anyway, as I doubt I'll be killing much with either of these lists, banshees or no banshees). Fell Bats will give me the rear charges I need to get some nice res (as well as taking out those nasty war machines). I did manage to stick in another banshee in the 3k point list though by taking out some bats. I also shifted things around a bit to give my general (the first necro lord) a bit more protection w/o sacrificing the other items (except for a power stone and a dispel scroll). Combined with Invoc of Nehek (the restore wounds part), my general is now nigh unkillable :).

Wargamejunkie
20-04-2005, 01:57
Well all in all, I think you got your self a good list, with enough changes to make it your own. The tactic I found that works is just raise your units that are across from their most killy then once you got about 40 which isnt that hard start working on your flanking units, all the while moving you flyers and fast calvery to their flanks and wait for them to get bogged down.

Elyas
20-04-2005, 02:22
I was thinking of just boosting my units until I get within charge range, and then engage him. Once our units are in combat, I'll start summoning zombies behind his battle line and rear charge him with dance macabre. My dire wolves (who advanced with my main line) would now take the opporunity to flank the units on the end of his line, hopefully surrounding his entire battle line. My bats should already have zoomed up and taken care of any war machines (and possibly even scared of any archers/gunners), leaving them available to support with rear charges/etc. I just don't wanna raise some zombies in flanking positions only to have them charged, allowing the enemy to overrun into or even straight past my main line (which could be big trouble).