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Dareus
19-08-2008, 19:25
Hello everyone,
I've got some question concerning my declining Empire force.
After some games against the new Dark Elves I'm a bit frustrated about my army (ok... a bit of whining involved in this thread:rolleyes:).

On the one hand I've to say that I don't like extreme armies like gunline or knightly order avalanche. I rather want to play a strategy game than an armybuilding or dicerolling game. Of course the latter points are always part of the overall strategy... but you know what I mean?

On the other hand I have the strong feeling that imperial Infantry is largely inferior (from a point/efficiency-point of course) to the Dark Elves Infantry. Detachments are ok, but all in all the Dark Elf Player is able to counter the countercharge of the usual 10 Halberdiers with 5 Harpies for the same points more easily than myself getting the Halberdiers in a position to actually being able to do a countercharge. Handgunners and Crossbowmen seem to be also inferior to RxB-Elves. (I mathhammered this a bit but when you get to better odds please let me know ;) )
Magic-efficiency is also well on the side of the Dark Elves.

So in the end there is only Knights (which are always a bit easily distracted by moderately used Dark Riders) and Artillery. What do you field when you're playing vs. (new) Dark Elves using Empire and what's your strategy with this?

Cheers,
Dareus

Andrew Luke
19-08-2008, 19:50
One oft-unnoticed downside to all of the nasty new magic for DE, is that sometimes people are taking less magic D. Yes, a DE sorceress with tome of furion and a sacrificial dagger is going to get off tons of spell, but that means she is less likely to have scrolls. This means you should be able to sneak in a fireball here and there too help with hydras or annoying dark-riders.

As for your detachment troubles, take another detachment of free company for each block and screen against the harpies and dark-riders, keeping your other detachment free to break ranks as intended.

Also, Ignore the Black guard if at all possible. Either shoot them to hell or flank them with knights.

Scythe
19-08-2008, 20:00
One oft-unnoticed downside to all of the nasty new magic for DE, is that sometimes people are taking less magic D. Yes, a DE sorceress with tome of furion and a sacrificial dagger is going to get off tons of spell, but that means she is less likely to have scrolls. This means you should be able to sneak in a fireball here and there too help with hydras or annoying dark-riders.


That's an illegal combination, you know. Taking two arcane items on the same character is not permitted. As most usefull arcane stuff is 25 pts or less, and the rest of the magic item list isn't all that attractive for a sorceress, you can expect most of them to pack a scroll next to their focus familliar / darkstar cloak or similar.

Andrew Luke
19-08-2008, 20:01
Can't Morathi do it?

blurred
19-08-2008, 20:20
I haven't played against the new DE, but I think these advice are sound nonetheless:

1) Hatred. Sure they re-roll attacks in the first round of combat. However, the drawback is massive: with small detachments (5-men archer detachments are beautiful) you can pretty much force your opponent's units to go where you want them to go.

2) Fire-concentration is the name of the game. Elves are fragile and its quite easy to make their units practically useless with a volley or two. I've come to appreciate my 15-strong unit of crossbowmen lately: they can lay down an impressively powerful hail of bolts (with a long range) and small scout and flyer units are not such a big threat to them.

3) RxBs are tricky for the Empire, but small units of knights should be able to endure their firepower and hit hard enough to drive them away or at least keep them occupied for a turn or two. Try to screen your infantry units with archers and stay out of their range. They have a range of 24" right?

Ok. That's it. Good luck with your struggle against those nasty, spike-eared pansies. ;)

El Haroldo
20-08-2008, 02:10
I like playing against empire as they have a similiar ability to Dark Elves in that a balanced army of infantry, light and heavy cav, magic, shooting and war machines is a very viable option.

Handgunners and Crossbowmen are bad times. My small and valuable infantry units start with a 5+ save. In fact, those missile troops are pretty deadly towards Cold One knights and Dark riders as well.

Unbreakable flaggelants and warrior priests making swordsmen stubborn also give me trouble.

Empire has numbers over any elves, but weaker stats and can vulnerable to psychology.

Gensuke626
20-08-2008, 02:33
Can't Morathi do it?

No. She can be given 1 Enchanted Item and 1 Arcane Item...and she has to take one of the two Magic weapons offered...

Dragon Prince of Caledor
20-08-2008, 05:05
Sucks that the only chariot you have is 300 pts. nothing more satisfying for me than watching other elves get squished under some fierce wheels. shoot out the heavy units and let his shooters shoot you; you are dirt cheap for the most part. As previously stated hatred is a double edged sword. Sacrifice a unit and expose his flanks. Black guard should be avoided at all costs by a human army. Try magic ing the crap out of him. I know that empire has a couple dirty bound items to drain dispel dice whilst a magic missile or two will abliterate any elf dark elf unit. You could also try scouts as bait and march blockers to give more time to shoot and make your preparations. Medium sized units of knights would do the trick; especially if you are in his flank.
Best of luck!

Kalec
20-08-2008, 06:00
Dark Elves do not like outriders. Nothing in the list, short of monsters and chariots and maybe the knights can survive against black powder weapons.

Knights are good. They get a 2+ AS against repeaters and black guard, and are great for charging into ranked infantry blocks and forcing the elves to pursue your much faster cavalry, opening them up for flank charges.

You are going to need some cannons to kill those damn hydras, dragons, manticores, and knights, because you do not want to get into combat with any of them.

Magic-heavy is the key here. Arch lector on the alter, a couple battle wizards and either a priest or a third wizard give you a good balance of magic offense and defense, as well as plenty of bound spells and the only chariot empire can have. It isn't an easy battle, but one Empire stands a fair chance of winning.

Nicha11
20-08-2008, 06:54
If Dark elf light cavalry are giving you trouble use two pistolier units together. Toughness three hates black powder.

And If magic is annoying but you don't want to go magic heavy take two warrior priests, or if you are really worried an arch Lector with altar.

Artillery wise mortars or Hellblasters as you will usually wound easily it should be quantity over quality.

Dareus
20-08-2008, 16:25
Thanks for the replies. Some nice hints but some things I already tried.
I'll let you know what works in future games and what doesn't.
I've rather problems with units like Witch Elves with Assassins and stuff like this, (Witch Elves last time killed the 11 Flagellants that tried to charge them. An Assassin kiled off the first row of 5, the rest got slaughtered by the Witches.)
than monsters and such.
My Artillery, which is the only viable option against Witch Elves like this, usually fails (either is unable to shoot because of misfire or chill wind or the crew is killed by harpies) and regiments of 10 Crossbowmen/Handgunners kill 2 Elves in average/round. Thats nice against Dark Riders but proofed not to be nice enough as those are quite dodgy and I don't get to shoot them that often (move or fire). And the Elves are perfectly able to do this against my Pistoliers, too (50% higher shooting efficiency here for only 25% points more).
Knights, the last tool you all more or less proposed are really my only reliable strong point. But in small units without MR-Banner they can get magicked away by one of the armour ignoring spells of the dark magic lore and getting shot really easy by boltthrower crossfire
Well, we'll see.
But playing magic heavy isn't that fun for me. There's too much luck involved and only works when the Dark elves aren't doing it either. In a straight duel seeing whose mages destroy the opposite army faster, the Dark Elves will always win. (bold statement but look at their spells and their items)

Thanks again,
Dareus

Scythe
20-08-2008, 17:48
I'll let you know what works in future games and what doesn't.
I've rather problems with units like Witch Elves with Assassins and stuff like this, (Witch Elves last time killed the 11 Flagellants that tried to charge them. An Assassin kiled off the first row of 5, the rest got slaughtered by the Witches.)


Witch Elves can be tricky. Try to control their movement, and take advantage of their frenzy (yes, I know everyone tells you that, and I admit it is often a lot easier said than done against an experienced opponent). Still, if you can sacrifice a small detachment, you might just get a flank charge of on them. The assassin would still be a problem in this case though, but static combat resolution helps you a lot more now. Failing that, whittle them down from a distance. Witch elves are practically vulnerable to everything at range, so try to take advantage of this. Mortars and Hellblasters have a high damage potential against the elves.
But the easiest solution would be to charge the witches with your knights. With only S3, they are not going to cut trough your armour anytime fast. Even the Assassin has trouble with knights, as S4 still gives you your 2+ save. The best he can hope for is a lucky killing blow, otherwise your kinghts will probably strike intact. Get a war banner on them, and you shouldn't be too far behind in combat resolution either.

sulla
20-08-2008, 23:06
So in the end there is only Knights (which are always a bit easily distracted by moderately used Dark Riders) and Artillery. What do you field when you're playing vs. (new) Dark Elves using Empire and what's your strategy with this?

Cheers,
Dareus

You sound like you only bring limited shooting (good for you, gunlines are more than a tad dull). So prioritsing your shooting is a must. First target the fast light stuff (harpies and Dark Riders). This will strip away the DE ability to target your shooters or redirect your heavy hitters.

Now comes the tricky bit. In 6th ed you could generally match up your knights vs COK and your infantry + detatchments vs DE infantry and come out favourably. With the 7th ed DE, these are more of an arm wrestle and the DE list is so versatile that even seemingly harmless units can be boosted to chaos chosen-esque damage output.

Particular 'tricks' to look out for are things like a BSB in the cold one knights; he's usually carrying the hydra banner(an extra attack for all riders and mounts in the first turn of a combat). You may well find this unit supported by the cauldron giving the riders an extra attack too. For 6 knights with full command and a BSB with a lance, you could face up to 24 s6 rerollable ws5 attacks and 14 rerollable s4 ws3 attacks(assuming they all make it into combat). Thats enough to wipe out a decent flaggelant unit or steam tank!!!

Another trick you will commonly see is black guard with a banner that allows them to strike first. With 2 s4 attacks each that always reroll, these guys can happily get flanked by your infantry and kill everything in base combat... and that same cauldron can give them an extra attack or killing blow if it's not supporting a more worthy cause.

Anyway, the moral of this tale is that DE can now be tooled into excellent combat troops. But... they are expensive, and they are t3 elves. So your best defence is to whittle them down at range with shooting and magic and if possible, bring a few small sacrificial units to throw away simply to expose flanks or tie the super units up for a turn. Just bear in mind that you can't just guarantee steamrolling them anymore.

Xzazzarai
22-08-2008, 07:27
1) Hatred. Sure they re-roll attacks in the first round of combat. However, the drawback is massive: with small detachments (5-men archer detachments are beautiful) you can pretty much force your opponent's units to go where you want them to go.


Like you said: Hate.
They are subjected to hate, not frenzy. So they aren't forced to charge.

_Lucian_
22-08-2008, 09:53
he didnt mention charging, i believe he was talking about the forced persue and march blocking on angles (although non skirmishing units would be preferable for this).

Scythe
22-08-2008, 17:37
Pretty much. Always purshue can be a pain for DEs, especially since empire has the option for some cheap as chips detachments to draw units from their positions. Of course, the DE player has to fall for it, and charge in the first place.

Dareus
22-08-2008, 18:46
Well, yes. Hatred isn't really that much of an disadvantage. The Elves are somewhat faster so it's rather difficult to set traps with detachment I think. Maybe it works with small units of knights (of course they still have to loose the combat and flee in the right moment).

But what do you think of the Hydra. Only Great Cannons are an option I think? They do an average of 1.45 wounds per round.(calculated with an hit-chance of 100% only ;) )
Steamtank maybe but, ST can't be the solution to all problems.

Kellindel
22-08-2008, 22:03
This last game I had was against Empire.

I had everything going for me in turn two. The Empire player saw his mistakes and what he thought my mistakes were actually well laid plans.

Then one unit of COK failed their stupidity on the round I wanted them to charge and the other unit chased down a knight unit.

My lines were really pulled apart at that point and the steam tank started shooting everything like a barrel of fish.

Take a tank. Take Crossbow men. You'll have the range and the S4 -1AS with most Dark Elf units spells death.

Have two support units for every main unit you have on the board.

Magic will be a pain because of DE unlimited casting but that increased the chance of mis-casting.

Try to figure out if he has an Assassin before hand. Innocent questions before the game are not illegal. Even when he likes to talk about what he has. Be mindful of the units an assassin can be in and pepper them with ranged attacks. Or roll over them with the Steam Tank.

Stupidity will kick in for any Cold One unit he has. When it happens take advantage of it. Use bait units to pull his lines apart and pick them off at your leasure.

Kalec
22-08-2008, 22:31
Outriders hit a hydra on 4's at long range. 7.5 hits, 2.5 wounds, roughly 1 unsaved wound.
Close range: 10 hits, 3.3 wounds, 1.5 unsaved wounds. Assuming a unit of 5 outriders, a 5+ scaly armor save and 5 toughness, I don't feel like checking my book.

Comparable to the great cannon in damage, more reliable, and good against the little guys too.

Cower Beast is good against DE, as you can expect to see some cavalry or monsters in almost every DE list, and they are some of the most problematic for Empire to deal with.

Dareus
23-08-2008, 03:32
Yeah! Gunpowder seems an option. Even normal Handgunners are indeed quite able to hit a large target. Definitely more reliable than the ordinary misfire-machine.

Thanks a lot to all answers. I've considered all suggestions and have made up my mind on my upcoming armylist.

Cheers,
Dareus

p.s.: if it doesn't work I'll make you responsible for this as it's easier to blame someone else than own wrong decisions or even an opponents unbalanced armybook. :p

kroq'gar
23-08-2008, 03:48
Damn seems im a tad late, though heres my two cents:

You must take enough shooting (even if you dont like it) to force him to come to you. If your trudging towards him then its game over.
EDIT: Helstorms are perfect for this.

Take two combat detachments for every parent unit. If you can afford it make these swordsmen (they can take on most light infantry/flyers).

Dont go magic heavy. He'll have the ring of hotek stuffed in his pants. The solution is warrior priests, even an archlector.

Dont listen to the nay-sayers. Take cannon. Target his RBT's (they smash easily when you hit one).

Finally, have faith in the little guys....