PDA

View Full Version : Any way to play Skaven as a more 'Elite' force?



Desalbert
29-10-2010, 17:15
I'm interested in Skaven, but find horde armies pretty unwieldy; so the question I have is simple... Are there a few ways to run Skaven as a smaller sized army, or, should I scratch them off my list of potentials?

Thanks,
Des

Kelderaith
29-10-2010, 17:38
Not all that knowledgeable about fantasy in general but I'll answer this as best as I can. I think you can, if you focus on said expensive thing (aka, don't run slave, run units of stormvermin, etc.). A Skryre theme list could be relatively small, in the sense that jezzai are costy, and adding weapon teams to each infantry block quickly adds up as well. Plus, warplightning canons and wheels are exactly all that cheap (well the wheel kinda is, but then again you can take multiples). The same could be achieved if you played with a few Bells/Furnace because they end up being quite expensive as well. I think there is plenty of ways to play Skaven with a more elite feel, but the real question is: would this really be all that good? My guess is that yes you can field an army without the mandatory big slaves and clanrats units, but when you don't you lose one of the definite edge the army possesses.

Artinam
29-10-2010, 17:43
Its possible but it might not be as effective. Go heavy on expensive gear and Storm Vermin.
You could theme it around a Warlord who found enough warpstone to buy it all, or an 'elite' bodyguard detachement of the Council of Thirteen.

Jokaero!
29-10-2010, 21:51
I play an Eshin themed list and in 2500pts I only have four infantry blocks, 40 Clanrats x2, 24 Night Runners and 40 Stormvermin. This includes a Grey Seer, Queek, Warlock, Assassin, 3 Weapons Teams, Hell Pit, Plagueclaw and Gutter Runners.

In the games I've played so far at this point level I have tabled opponents and only drawn one game. I hit the enemy with a barrage of templates and 13th spells before Queek's Super Stormvermin mop up the survivors.

It's a Skaven elite army, and it works.

(A small note, I probably would run the 200 odd slaves everyone else does if it wasn't for the sheer amount to paint.)

decker_cky
29-10-2010, 22:15
I've got a list I want to try with a unit of 25 plague censer bearers, a furnace and a bell. Can't get much more elite than a unit which makes swordmasters blush. Lots of cheap stuff aside from that, but anything with those censers must be elite.

The bearded one
29-10-2010, 22:40
Well... it's a bit like trying to play dwarfs as a fast army.. You can try it and there is a fair number of options available but it won't necessarily be effective for the points invested. Get an exessive number of stormvermin I'd say and bring on Ze Halberdz! Queek is an option to get a strong stormvermin unit out, take a hordeunit of those.

Unwise
29-10-2010, 22:50
If you want an elite army that is themed around being elite, take Queek Headtaker as your general. This guy is expensive, but good for his cost, he also allows you to take one unit of uber-stormvermin (Ws5 St4 - ok, uber for skaven). Theme wise he surrounds himself with the best of the best and takes more Stormvermin than other clans.

Between him and his unit + weapon team, that is a good portion of points gone right there. With Queek, 30 bodyguard, 30 storm vermin, BSB, Warlock, 8 rat ogres, 2x weapon teams and an abomination, that is pretty much your whole 2000point army there.

That being said, ignoring slaves is not good optimisation, but do what makes you happy.

kyussinchains
29-10-2010, 23:02
it could be done, but I doubt it would be tremendously effective, it would perhaps make a fun themed list to take queek and some uber stormvermin, but having to take queek every time to be competetive would be tremendously dull for an opponent (back in 6th edition, enyoss used to take blind eltharion in almost every army, true it was to offset the awful intrigue at court rule and make the elves somewhat playable, but it got boring for both him and the rest of our group....)

skaven are inherently a horde army, they can't compete on a one for one basis, and their magic and war machines are too inherently unreliable to consistently win games.....

couple of big units with loads of the special stuff might be alright.... lots of rat ogres, censer bearers, jezzails....

Kevlar
30-10-2010, 01:09
If you want an elite army that is themed around being elite, take Queek Headtaker as your general. This guy is expensive, but good for his cost, he also allows you to take one unit of uber-stormvermin (Ws5 St4 - ok, uber for skaven). Theme wise he surrounds himself with the best of the best and takes more Stormvermin than other clans.

Between him and his unit + weapon team, that is a good portion of points gone right there. With Queek, 30 bodyguard, 30 storm vermin, BSB, Warlock, 8 rat ogres, 2x weapon teams and an abomination, that is pretty much your whole 2000point army there.

That being said, ignoring slaves is not good optimisation, but do what makes you happy.

Actually Queek is very cheap. He is about 20 points more than a standard kitted out warlord. Granted no ward save, but he def has more than 20 points in extra abilities.

The deal with skaven is the slaves make the army. At least 100-150 are nice to have. Granted thats a lot of painting, but very little % of your total army points.

Feefait
30-10-2010, 01:20
Skaven are a horde army. It's their motif. It's what they do. and they're about as elite as they come as far as power tier. Play something else if you don't like horde. Even going 'elite' with skaven will probably mean big units. I just don't understand the point, really if you want ot play an army but don't want to do what they're known for.

The bearded one
30-10-2010, 01:25
Well, for example, dwarfs are known for their shooting, but you can easily go maxed out on combat. Dark elves are elite but can horde up with their spears, and orcs can go elite with an army of big 'uns and black orcs.

squeekenator
30-10-2010, 02:33
Well, for example, dwarfs are known for their shooting, but you can easily go maxed out on combat. Dark elves are elite but can horde up with their spears, and orcs can go elite with an army of big 'uns and black orcs.

Dwarves happen to have good shooting, yes, but it's not their defining characteristic. Playing Skaven without hordes is like playing Dwarves without beards or High Elves without androgynous girly-men. It's just... not Skaven. Not that I'm trying to be dismissive of your idea, Desalbert, but why do you want elite Skaven?

grumbaki
30-10-2010, 03:09
Well, a Clan Moulder themed army could be pretty elite. Lots of rat ogres, hell pit abominations, some giant rats (as mounts too). I could see the points piling up real fast.

Desalbert
30-10-2010, 05:54
Dwarves happen to have good shooting, yes, but it's not their defining characteristic. Playing Skaven without hordes is like playing Dwarves without beards or High Elves without androgynous girly-men. It's just... not Skaven. Not that I'm trying to be dismissive of your idea, Desalbert, but why do you want elite Skaven?


Skaven are a horde army. It's their motif. It's what they do. and they're about as elite as they come as far as power tier. Play something else if you don't like horde. Even going 'elite' with skaven will probably mean big units. I just don't understand the point, really if you want ot play an army but don't want to do what they're known for.

You're both right. I was just curious. Mainly because their background and outlook and nature is so intriguing and so 'my style' that it's a shame they're such a horde, because a horde won't work for me, alas.

Skaven players, enjoy your army. I'm scratching them off my "lets choose an army" list and moving on...

Wishing
30-10-2010, 08:11
Well, a Clan Moulder themed army could be pretty elite. Lots of rat ogres, hell pit abominations, some giant rats (as mounts too). I could see the points piling up real fast.

This is exactly what I was contemplating. I don't have the skaven book currently, so I'd love to hear what Moulder options there are for core units and fleshing out the army. Doesn't have to be competitive, just playable.

Kevlar
30-10-2010, 15:23
This is exactly what I was contemplating. I don't have the skaven book currently, so I'd love to hear what Moulder options there are for core units and fleshing out the army. Doesn't have to be competitive, just playable.

Rat ogres are expensive money wise though. For two rat ogres you can purchase 20 clan rats. I mean if you want to spend big bucks on your army you could take thrott and make some rat ogres core. 6 rat ogres put out a lot of hurt, two units of those would be nice hammers. But they will also hurt your wallet. Maybe you can get a good deal on spare IoB ogres, but the IoB clan rats are usually an even better deal.

sulla
31-10-2010, 07:27
Skaven players, enjoy your army. I'm scratching them off my "lets choose an army" list and moving on...The 'elite' army is rarely the most reliable way of winning. Even WoC make use of dirt cheap marauders.

But it is often the easiest way to start an army. I wouldn't be too discouraged if I were you. I'd start out with a smaller army of more expensive models and slowly expand as you can afford the purchases and time to paint them.

There are many themes for skaven that will let you get started without requiring 200 slaves. Don't get too locked into only taking the most efficient army. There's plenty of time for that later down the track.

Taavis
02-11-2010, 01:14
Ok not sure if I have missed something or not, but are characters tournament legal? This would make a big difference in how you build/attempt an elite army list.

Taavis
02-11-2010, 01:34
Ok not sure if I have missed something or not, but are characters tournament legal? This would make a big difference in how you build/attempt an elite army list.

eyescrossed
02-11-2010, 02:54
...armies without characters aren't legal. Of course characters are legal.

The_Bear_in_the_Hat
02-11-2010, 03:24
Skaven are one of the major winners in the new edition, because they have access to huge numbers of cheap troops that can actually fight. Also, their special rules mean that taking hordes or huge units is even more beneficial with Skaven.

Whilst it can be difficult to build up an army which uses massed horde units, it probably is worth the effort to master the use of infantry; rather than going "elite" to avoid the issue. The Skaven are a straight-up horde army and the new rules are a gift from the Horned One.

As to making them an elite army - have you considered putting them on stilts, giving them pointy hats and making them wear dresses? High Skaven: it may catch on.

Taavis
02-11-2010, 03:50
Ok should have been a bit more specific. I meant to say Special Characters.

eyescrossed
02-11-2010, 04:18
Ahh, my bad.

Gorbad Ironclaw
02-11-2010, 06:26
Ok should have been a bit more specific. I meant to say Special Characters.

Depends on the tournament in question and where in the world you are playing. My initial guess would probably be no.
But unless you are going to a tournament I don't really see why that should matter.

Surgency
02-11-2010, 07:08
Depends on the tournament in question and where in the world you are playing. My initial guess would probably be no.
But unless you are going to a tournament I don't really see why that should matter.

Official GW tournaments allow SC's, as they're all part of the army book. The new thought on SC's is that if its in the book, its allowed in a game, no questions. The "banned characters" and "opponents permission only" thing is all holdovers from old editions, and we'll likely never see it again. I haven't heard of a tournament that bans SC's in years, and they're becoming more and more rare. Given the new points limits, you'll find that most of the complained about characters aren't feasible in most tournaments anyway...

Wishing
02-11-2010, 08:58
Rat ogres are expensive money wise though. For two rat ogres you can purchase 20 clan rats. I mean if you want to spend big bucks on your army you could take thrott and make some rat ogres core. 6 rat ogres put out a lot of hurt, two units of those would be nice hammers. But they will also hurt your wallet. Maybe you can get a good deal on spare IoB ogres, but the IoB clan rats are usually an even better deal.

I had a feeling there would be a Moulder special character that unlocks a Moulder army theme... thanks. :) So rat ogres can be core, how about giant rats and such? Someone mentioned you can use giant rats as mounts? Mounted skaven sounds very weird to me, I haven't actually played WHFB since about 5th edition.

Surgency
02-11-2010, 13:22
Only for characters. There aren't any rat-mounted cav, if thats what you're wondering :p

Chain
02-11-2010, 15:40
...armies without characters aren't legal. Of course characters are legal.

well a warlock engineer without any stuff can act as a general


Will be odd with such a weak general though

DeathlessDraich
02-11-2010, 15:56
I'm interested in Skaven, but find horde armies pretty unwieldy; so the question I have is simple... Are there a few ways to run Skaven as a smaller sized army, or, should I scratch them off my list of potentials?

Thanks,
Des

Smallest viable Skaven list I can muster is about 120 models

KronusDaSneaky
02-11-2010, 16:16
If you going elite I would suggest skyre or moulder heavy, notably the latter. With Throt you can take Rat Ogres as common choices meaning that you can have an army of just them and other expensive rare's and specials giving you a very small elite army indeed. Probably not very effective but truth be told if you want an elite army you would be much better off with HE or WoC

eyescrossed
02-11-2010, 16:38
well a warlock engineer without any stuff can act as a general

Oh, so Warlock Engineers aren't characters? :p

Chain
02-11-2010, 16:44
Oh, so Warlock Engineers aren't characters? :p

^^'

seem to have forgotten the part about it being so few points it's easy to miss :P

Mystic_Weasel
02-11-2010, 16:46
I would say "dont want horde" = "dont want skaven", Simples!
every skaven army is just a massive horde of warriors, over running their enemies in a sea of fur. Although it is possible to make more elite skaven armies, i would say. . .
1. They are not so effective.
2. More importantly, it's not very skaven.
You may as well want friendly chaos warriors, or skinny ogres.

Elite skaven armies might have more stormvermin or more rat ogres etc. but at the end of the day are still vast armies darkening the horizon.
I would say stormvermin hordes get expensive quickly cash wise, and do you really want to have an army of those abominations, the rat ogre models?
Any right thinking rat general wants lots of stormvermin, clanrats, and slaves (reguardless of effectiveness...they look great!).

If you are really set on skaven then go for it, dont take my negativity too seriously.
To me though you don't seem to sure, and spending 250 pounds on an army you are not really excited about, makes me think you would be better with another army.

Jormi_Boced
02-11-2010, 16:52
Official GW tournaments allow SC's, as they're all part of the army book. The new thought on SC's is that if its in the book, its allowed in a game, no questions. The "banned characters" and "opponents permission only" thing is all holdovers from old editions, and we'll likely never see it again. I haven't heard of a tournament that bans SC's in years, and they're becoming more and more rare. Given the new points limits, you'll find that most of the complained about characters aren't feasible in most tournaments anyway...

Really? Neither of the GTs I am going to this year allow SCs.

pauduro
03-11-2010, 02:38
So how many is conciderd a HORDE? im going now for a 3-25 Clan rats, 2-4 R
Ogers, 2-20 G Rats, 1 HP is this a horde?

Cus i have seen some Skaven that go like 100 Slaves, 50 P monks, 50 S vermin and doom weels and HP.

So what do you guys consider a horde?

eyescrossed
03-11-2010, 02:56
An army with at least 3 units of 35+ models.

Ramius4
03-11-2010, 03:12
An army with at least 3 units of 35+ models.

lol.. My Skaven armies at 2500 points usually clock in around 300 models including either a bell or furnace. 105 models? I wouldn't get out of bed for 105 models, let alone call that a horde :p

eyescrossed
03-11-2010, 03:32
lol.. My Skaven armies at 2500 points usually clock in around 300 models including either a bell or furnace. 105 models? I wouldn't get out of bed for 105 models, let alone call that a horde :p

:eek:

-squirts the musk of fear-

That's a lot of models.

Ramius4
03-11-2010, 03:53
:eek:

-squirts the musk of fear-

Hey watch it! That's my leg... :shifty:

Anyways yeah, I don't really run units less than 50 to 60 anymore. Especially Slaves near the general. For the Bell it's 80 Clanrats minimum. More often than not I don't bother with more than one or two weapons teams total. Magic fills that role just as well.

eyescrossed
03-11-2010, 04:01
Fair enough, heh.

skavenmatt
03-11-2010, 18:55
You could take Stormvermin as core and ROgres and Jezzail as Specials in an elite list. if you really want, throw in a throt the unclean or queek. There are lots of options, they usually just don't work out as efectively as hordes and hordes of slaves and clanrats.