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View Full Version : how to use greatswords and unit sizes?



Darwin_green
09-06-2009, 19:01
hello, I'm humoring picking up the battallion box set and thinking about actually using the Greatswords.

anyhoo, a long time ago I converted up about 10 from the old warrior sprue and the militia sprues.

so I'll eventually wind up with 20 or so.

ok, so what's a good number to use with them? 10-20 or stick with something like 12 and run them 6 wide?

or maybe even field 2 units of 10? (I probably wont be getting outriders or any extra cannons for a while so my specials are still pretty open)

I've tried reading the other threads about them, but basically all I hear is how Cheazy VC and DE black guard are. The group is pretty easy and laid back so that shouldn't be too much of an issue.

sulla
09-06-2009, 20:17
What armies are you typically facing? If you face a lot of fear causers, you definately don't want the smaller unit size.

You probably don't want to go any wider than 5 either. They are relatively poor in combat so it's unlikely they will be causing many wounds. Static combat res is your best bet for winning rounds of combat with these guys (other than if you charge).

Also, keep a BSB nearby; you don't want you expensive unit fleeing from a single bad ld test.

Witchblade
09-06-2009, 20:21
I'm very inexperienced with Empire, but at first impression stubborn seems to be their main feature, so I'd take pretty big units to avoid being outnumbered by fear causers. That way, they shouldn't run, especially not with a BSB nearby. In short, they're a tarpit (which isn't what they should be, according to the fluff...)

Anardakil
09-06-2009, 21:29
or stick a character with the icon of magnus in the unit to make them immune to fear. :)

SuperArchMegalon
09-06-2009, 22:04
At 10 points per model, they'll seem expensive compared to other Empire troops, but keep in mind they're still a lot cheaper than most other armies' special troops. I'd use a big unit of at least 20, up to 25.

sroblin
09-06-2009, 23:09
I've always run mine in units of 20; they need a decent amount of static CR to win battles. I suppose an extra 5 models would be nice to significantly improve their chance of starting battle with full rank bonus, but the unit at that point has become kind of pricey.

Alternately, I suppose you could take smaller units to serve purely as stubborn tarpits, but then you might as well get flagellents or something cheaper and therefore more disposable.

How to use them? They are an ok anvil, I feel, with a better chance to inflict damage than an average Empire unit. They should win against average infantry all right, but they won't do well against elites of other armies- but that's ok, because they're still stubborn and you can hold the enemy off while you get flankers in position. You can stick a warrior priest or general with them, the former will not only make them immune to psych but increase their chance to hit. If a BSB is in range (highly recommended to have on in most Empire armies anyway), than they are very difficult to break, and they have decent survivability for Empire infantry. So I think the general principle is to deploy them somewhere in the center of the enemy line, intercepting dangerous enemy units and pinning them down in combat while you get a flank attack into motion. Alternatively, you can use them to help trump average enemy infantry blocks (average Orc/Skaven/Goblin etc.) head on.

Laughingmonk
10-06-2009, 05:58
At 10 points per model, they'll seem expensive compared to other Empire troops, but keep in mind they're still a lot cheaper than most other armies' special troops. I'd use a big unit of at least 20, up to 25.

Heck, they're a lot cheaper than many armies CORE troops. The only caveat is that they take up a prime special slot. If I could take one unit as core they would be in every list I make.

scarletsquig
14-06-2009, 07:53
20 + 1 character in a 3x7 formation. Get as many attacks out of the unit as you can.

Immunity to fear, either from the icon of magnus or imperial banner etc. is needed for this unit. Otherwise it's incredibly easy to win combat and autobreak them. Warrior Priest works well, it's one of the better units to have hatred on.

With immunity to fear and a good LD 9/ battle standard re-roll from somewhere, they'll reliably fight to the last man almost all the time.

You're not going to be winning any combats with them alone. At all. Seriously, never. Be thankful if the enemy doesn't wipe out the entire front rank in the first round of combat.

Take a charge and countercharge with detachments or other units in the next turn (small units of 5 knights are great for this), and hopefully break the nasty unit.

Take a couple of small swordsmen detachments. 9 is a good number, in 3x3 formation. Alternatively, 1 swordsmen detachment and a 5-man handgunner/ archer detachment works well. Keep them way back, out of charge range, but within countercharge range. They're also good for seeing off pesky skirmishers and march blockers.

Darwin_green
14-06-2009, 08:06
groovy. I'm gonna be focusing on my chaos, but once I get a nice and stable 1000pt list down I'll pick up a small empire force.

I want to make a nice and balanced force of empire with a healthy mix of infantry and cavalry since my chaos force is fully mounted.

Von Wibble
14-06-2009, 17:43
20 + 1 character in a 3x7 formation. Get as many attacks out of the unit as you can.

Immunity to fear, either from the icon of magnus or imperial banner etc. is needed for this unit. Otherwise it's incredibly easy to win combat and autobreak them. Warrior Priest works well, it's one of the better units to have hatred on.

With immunity to fear and a good LD 9/ battle standard re-roll from somewhere, they'll reliably fight to the last man almost all the time.

You're not going to be winning any combats with them alone. At all. Seriously, never. Be thankful if the enemy doesn't wipe out the entire front rank in the first round of combat.

Take a charge and countercharge with detachments or other units in the next turn (small units of 5 knights are great for this), and hopefully break the nasty unit.

Take a couple of small swordsmen detachments. 9 is a good number, in 3x3 formation. Alternatively, 1 swordsmen detachment and a 5-man handgunner/ archer detachment works well. Keep them way back, out of charge range, but within countercharge range. They're also good for seeing off pesky skirmishers and march blockers.

Absolutely right. Just one other point - I find its best to give the character with the Icon of Magnus a 1+ save from armour of meteoric iron, as he will draw quite a lot of attacks otherwise.

If only greatswords could be used as detachments.....

Gokamok
15-06-2009, 10:34
Absolutely right. Just one other point - I find its best to give the character with the Icon of Magnus a 1+ save from armour of meteoric iron, as he will draw quite a lot of attacks otherwise.

If only greatswords could be used as detachments.....

From my experience, a BSB with Icon of Magnus and Armor of Meteoric Iron is absolutely perfect in a unit of Greatswords. They'll likely be deployed around the center of your line, so you get the added bonus of making damn sure that your BSB isn't running anywhere either;)

Clobbersaurus
15-06-2009, 13:33
Sorry, again, I am a noob. What is a "BSB?"

BlazeXI
15-06-2009, 16:12
Sorry, again, I am a noob. What is a "BSB?"

Battle Standard Bearer.