View Full Version : social behavior as observed in large groups of rodents

Ultimate Life Form
14-07-2009, 22:57
Now that I'm putting my finishing touches on my new Skaven army, I'd like to know some basic deployment tactics from veteran overlords of the chaotic rat-men. How do Skaven use their number to best effect? How do they usually behave and band together under normal conditions? I want to hear your field studies!

The question in question is the following: How big should blocks of Clan Rats be? I know the Skaven philosophy is there is never enough of them, but unfortunately, there is a point limit even to them. Now that I've worked out my first army list, the last thing I'm not sure about are the Clanrats. Initially, I was planning on running blocks of 20 (coming from Lizardmen, that's quite a lot), but they appeared a little frail on paper and after reading the Skaven guy's army building tips in the book again, who advocates taking Core units in blocks of at least 25, I decided to heed these words of wisdom and increased size to the aforementioned 25.

Now the question is. Is 25 Clan Rats per block okay or is it still on the weak side? Should I further increase their numbers? If so, what is the ideal size for such a block?

My army is intended to be Teh Horde Army incarnate (and therefore the complete opposite of my Lizardmen to offer me a little variation for once), so I want as many units and models as possible on the table. For that reason, I am currently planning on running 4 units of 25 Clan Rats. But maybe it would be wiser to (grudgingly) disband one unit and instead have 3 units of 30 each. Which is more important, bigger blocks or more blocks?

14-07-2009, 23:08
i think that 25 is a good number and you could get more of the other units you still have the protection in numbers with 25 but if you going to have rhe swarm banner then you shuld have a unit of 30, the thing is that 30 or more models in a unit becomes hard to manuover around the field


Ultimate Life Form
14-07-2009, 23:18
Ah, thank you ever so much. :D

Nope, no Swarm Banner or other tricksy stuff. Just as many rats as the table can bear.:D

15-07-2009, 06:05
Oh and the Stormbanner.

Its, cheap, You can't dispell it, as a Skaven you should have a bannerbearer of some sort anyway, and if used on the right turn, half - 1/3 the armies on the table's battleplan will fall apart around them.

It is potentially the most broken item in all of WHFB. :)

PS. If you're using 3 blocks of 25 clanrats, then be sure to add 3 units of 20 - 25 slaves as well.
C'mon, they're only 60 points each!

Ultimate Life Form
15-07-2009, 13:56
Thank you, Feintstar. Yes, of xourse I included a LOT of Slaves, my current model count is approx. 340 models at 2000 pts.

However, I found out that it will probably be impossible to remove one Clan Rat unit because I forgot the Mainstay rule which means I need four blocks of Rats if I want to take my four blocks of Plague Monks.:(

Well, the choice is taken off my hands anyway. Seriously, who writes such weird rules? It's very hard for an old Scar Veteran like me to change his ways and mind all these restrictions. While the Mainstay rule is rumored to go, it's still in the current book, so I'm forced to take 4x25, which I'm absolutely fine with since it means I'm not doing anything wrong.:D

Since 25 seems to be considered a good number, I'll test it out till Nov and when the new book comes (without Mainstay, but with cheaper Clan Rats as the rumors suggest), then mass mayhem will truly set in.:D

15-07-2009, 14:01
when you are using your slave blocks, be careful to angle dem in front of your clanrats. and don't flee, take the charge and break, that way, with some carful use of this, no matter the outcome of the combat wou will guarantee that the enemy have exposed their flank to one of your units.

angle like this:

\_\ or /_/

bert n ernie
16-07-2009, 01:06
If you're going to be taking characters, or making use of either the swarm or fear banner in your clanrat units then one unit of about 30 can be useful. Often your opponent will want to shoot out of the sky any unit which contains a character or useful dude of any kind, so this keep that unit testing on full leadership for a while longer. Otherwise I pretty much stick to 25 all the time.

16-07-2009, 11:46
While you're thinking about preparing for the new book, the new assassins not taking hero slots will make the world fear the skaven - 1 per fully ranked unit = total mayhem - we can afford far more units per points than the Druchii can.
So all the more reason to buy More Clanrats it would seem....

21-07-2009, 15:38
25 to 30 on clanrats. Personally i field 4 to 6 units, 1 of stormvermin 23 to 28 with warbanner and 2 to 3 units of 20 slaves (naked) any points left over go on weapon teams and other nasties. Hope it helps

21-07-2009, 21:49
It looks a bit bad on the table but taking 21 slaves instead of 20 increases the number of kills needed for a panic check with 1 for a very small cost.