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kingbsa
03-03-2011, 19:29
ok abit broad but i would like to know what is most challenging army to play? i'm looking to start 40k again after a long break (think my last game was when dark eldar first came out lol) i'm predominantly a fantasy player in fact ive have armies of each one available my main been beastmen so im use to sub-par styles although i relise its completely different game. so basically whats the most challenging army to play without unit spamming?
thanks for any input

ps sorry i don't tend to make much sense and tend to ramble

ColShaw
03-03-2011, 19:32
I'd say Necrons (because they're bad), or possibly Craftworld Eldar (because they're specialized and fragile).

Robot Unicorn
03-03-2011, 19:38
Codex: Chaos Space Marines.

It's challenging to force myself to continue using it, rather than join the "counts as" Legion. ;)

rhelsius
03-03-2011, 19:50
I say Dark Angels. Difficult to combine.

kingbsa
03-03-2011, 20:23
necrons=bad? because they havent had an update in awhile? craftworld sound a solid choice then.

whats wrong with chaos marines?

dark angels difficult to combine how?

Hendarion
03-03-2011, 20:25
I say Dark Angels. Difficult to combine.
They are overpriced, but Marines are *always* an easy army. Very forgiving.

I'd say DE or CWE are hard to learn/master (DE more than CWE) without Jet-Councils. Hard to play though? Dunno.

NixonAsADaemonPrince
03-03-2011, 20:29
I'd vote for Craftworld Empire as well, as you have to use them as a whole with the units supporting each other, or they fall apart.

Tyranids can be a bit hard to use as well, again they tend to have units catered to specific duties rather than all rounders.

wyvirn
03-03-2011, 20:40
Challenging is a relative term, one player may have a knack for one play style, while another person might not. For example, a hypothetical army's mechanics that depends solely on telling green from red would be very difficult for a colorblind person, but easy for others.
That said, I will say that I feel the new dark eldar and tyranids have a steep learning curve. They both require experience and tactical finesse to be successful, as well as being fairly unforgiving.

mephy77
03-03-2011, 20:40
My vote is for either of the eldar armies.

Especially if you've learnt to play the game behind a 3+ brick wall. Big learning curve and subtle tactics.

yabbadabba
03-03-2011, 20:46
Socially challenging will be Ultramarines for the sheer amount of negativity you will have to wade through for even thinking of fielding them.

Robot Unicorn
03-03-2011, 20:47
The recent Tryanid codex and Tau require much more skill than any variant of Eldar, imo.

mephy77
03-03-2011, 20:49
Socially challenging will be Ultramarines for the sheer amount of negativity you will have to wade through for even thinking of fielding them.

Is that real world whinging, or internet nerd rage?

I've never encountered this kind of discrimination against the ultramarines. A bit of banter maybe, but not an overwhelming amount of negativity.

yabbadabba
03-03-2011, 20:53
Is that real world whinging, or internet nerd rage?

I've never encountered this kind of discrimination against the ultramarines. A bit of banter maybe, but not an overwhelming amount of negativity. 'Fraid its experience - mostly disparaging :(

Ozybonza
03-03-2011, 20:54
Someone previously mentioned Dark Angels, but I'd like to say that Doublewing, specifically, is one of the most challenging. They are certainly able to be competative, but they are an extremely unforgiving army to play - your low model count means that every move you make is crucial, but they can be pretty awesome (especially since the enw FAQ) if played well. Certainly an advanced army.

In general, I think that any army can be challenging with the right list. If you take a wide variety of units rather than spamming "easy win" choices that is.

Example: I've played a great general who played IG, but he had Ogryns, scout sentinals, armoured sentinals, a single Leman Russ vanquisher, a single chimera, a large squad of conscripts. He's turned (arguably) the most powerful, easy win codex into an extremely challenging army to play with, but he still manages to pull off wins due to unit synergy and tricky tactics.

mephy77
03-03-2011, 21:02
'Fraid its experience - mostly disparaging :(

Awww man, sorry to hear that.

Love Ultramainres, hate nerd rage. My first models.


Socially awkward? Hmmm. I don't like seeing internet cookie cutter lists, since they are either proxies, or grey models that will never see a lick of paint before being sold on to fund the new big thing.

And running internet lists in casual play displays a lack of imagination...unless you were the progenitor of the revolution. In which case, keep you secrets to yourself and win more!

Bonzai
03-03-2011, 21:12
I would say Tau. Necrons are dated sure, but they still have reasonably good units and specialists. Until the Space Wolves came out, I felt that I had a decent chance against 90% of the lists out there.

Tau unfortunately have little to no versatility. It is pretty much move and shoot. Now factor in all the FNP, Armor saturation, and mobility available and you can see that it's an up hill battle.

PatchOnMyShoulder
03-03-2011, 23:32
Necrons or CW:Eldar

BT are simple to play so hard to call them challenging, and DA with the new FAQ got a boost.

So probably CW:Eldar. Very unforgiving of mistakes (low T, armor, and low model count), AND old enough to show codex creep issues. They MUST be played as a whole, and must generally be played perfectly.

They're still a razor in the hands of a vet player, but they're one that can be dealt with now, and in the hands of a newbie or even moderatly skilled player it's almost laughable to beat them (since any mistake they make costs them 1-2 units being wiped)

Ivellis
03-03-2011, 23:58
I don't know what all this Craftworld Eldar being hard to play is about, I think I've only ever lost a single game with my craftworlders, and I'm not that great of a player, I lose basically any other game I play not using CWE.

DE seem a lot more challenging, although I finally won a game with them yesterday, 'twas a great moment.

Wise Guy Sam
04-03-2011, 00:05
Socially challenging will be Ultramarines for the sheer amount of negativity you will have to wade through for even thinking of fielding them.

:evilgrin:This is why I continue to make ultramarine armies. Not that I cop that much crap for using them it's fun when I do....then win.

stonehorse
04-03-2011, 00:09
Ravenwing.

Very limited selection, and so few in numbers. They I think have to be one of the hardest armies in the game... and I'm a long time Necron player! :D

RobPro
04-03-2011, 02:26
Try winning objective-based missions against a competent opponent with Necrons, I dare you. ;)

Latro_
04-03-2011, 08:35
Squats, they dont have an army list.

In all seriousness you can make any army a challenge to play with by not taking the cookie cutter effective units. Just do the whole collect what you like the look of thing.

kingbsa
04-03-2011, 10:41
would be simple to go and pick an army from the models wouldn't trouble is i tend to like the vast majority of them its how i ended up with every fantasy army:shifty: lol, i'm looking many for a challenging play style type of army to go by mainly. cw eldar sound good. are dark still hard to play even with new book? whats main problem with needs? is it that bad with variety with tau? move shoot done?

blackjack
04-03-2011, 15:23
The weakest army is Necrons with out a doubt.

The most effective way to use Tau are as a very simple gun line army, not over powered but extremly simple. Castle up and shoot. Chase objectives late in the game...

The hardest army to play tactically is probably Daemons as they are so bloody random.

Lord Gabranth
04-03-2011, 18:00
Try winning objective-based missions against a competent opponent with Necrons, I dare you. ;)

Imo my buddy uses necrons and everytime that there is an objective to capture, he rolls imortals and pariahs over the thing and those damn things are hard to stop, and the necron codex isnt that bad, it still hasnt been nerfed like the chaos codex, so it still boosts one of the badest monsterous creatures in the game, the NightBringer

Obrimos
04-03-2011, 21:12
Try footslogging CW Eldar.

Aluinn
04-03-2011, 21:19
would be simple to go and pick an army from the models wouldn't trouble is i tend to like the vast majority of them its how i ended up with every fantasy army:shifty: lol, i'm looking many for a challenging play style type of army to go by mainly. cw eldar sound good. are dark still hard to play even with new book? whats main problem with needs? is it that bad with variety with tau? move shoot done?

I now play both types of Eldar, so maybe I'm fit to answer this.

Dark Eldar are theoretically more fragile than the Craftworld Eldar, with overall worse armor saves (quite a lot of CW Eldar actually have 4+ or 3+, whereas DE very rarely have anything better than 5+) and lower armor values (they don't go above 11, seriously!), on open-topped vehicles no less.

But, as Jes and Phil said in the videos, they cheat :). For one thing, they can take quite a few Haemonculi (up to 6), which will grant any unit they join FnP from the start of the game. This can make them actually tougher than their Craftworld counterparts in quite a few cases. On top of this, they have some units (Wracks and Grotesques, specifically) which start the game with FnP even in the absence of an accompanying Haemonculus; these also have fairly high Tougness. For their vehicles, things are not so rosey: Although they do have some decent defensive upgrades, there's no getting around the fact that they're very fragile, even with 20 points each invested in making them harder to kill. The Haemonculus buff also has its limits, not only in terms of how many can be taken, but in the sense that they drive up points cost and prevent, say, a Warrior squad in a Raider from taking a heavy weapon, if they want to ride along.

In the end I would say that DE are a bit more fragile overall, but not as much as it would seem at first glance. The big advantages for DE, IME, are that they have slightly more efficiency in points terms, can spam more special and heavy weapons, and have much better generalists (mainly in the form of Kabalite Warriors and Trueborn, though they can take diverse weapons on units across the list). By contrast, Eldar units are heavily focused on being strong against a very specific sort of target: For example, Howling Banshees are a close combat unit, but beyond that are only good in close combat against heavily-armored, not-too-numerous enemies, while Fire Dragons are entirely armed with anti-tank weapons and are pretty bad against anything else (except a monstrous creature, maybe).

So, TL;DR: Craftworlders are slightly tougher and more specialized, with the specialization (along with higher points costs for roughly equivalent units) probably making them a bit more difficult to play. I'd expect some lowering of points costs whenever they get their next codex, but the specialization thing is thematic and will probably always be a part of the army to some extent.

EDIT: Since you also asked about Tau and 'Nids, I'm less experienced there but can take a stab: 'Nids are not necessarily bad, but their codex suffers from poor internal balance, i.e. some units are just very poor choices compared to competing units in the same Force Org slots. They rely heavily on synergy between their units, though, in any case, and that is what makes them difficult to play, as far as I know. Tau are indeed universally quite hopeless in close combat, but can choose between a mobile shooting army, a more static army, or some sort of hybrid, and can be more or less reliant on vehicles, so there are some options in play styles there. They seem the least difficult to play of all armies you mentioned, though I haven't personally used them since early 4th Ed.

Hakar
05-03-2011, 04:24
Is the Harlequin list still legal? That should be a challenge and a half.

DeviantApostle
05-03-2011, 06:18
Discounting armies that are currently hurting due to lack of updates, I'd throw in Chaos Daemons into the ring.

1. Tricky deployment rules.
2. Limited ranged anti-vehicle.
3. No transports.
4. High point cost overall.

At the beginning of the game, you make numerous dice rolls that are likely to throw your game into disarray somehow. Then there's no guarentee that the rest of your army will come in on the turns you need them to, and even then there's no guarentee they won't suffer deep strike mishap.

For added challenge, try a mono-god theme list or a dual god theme list.

Hendarion
05-03-2011, 06:39
Is the Harlequin list still legal? That should be a challenge and a half.
You mean the one from 3rd Edition? Err... no.

Dvora
05-03-2011, 06:51
Witch Hunters lead by an inquisitor, IMO just..freaking worthless.

Inach
05-03-2011, 08:21
Necron or daemons

Necrons, the least units possible to field and besides the lords or Dfields no upgrades possible.
Though units but if an opponent knows how to handle crons.. ur dead (kill warriors)

Daemons because:
1. they have a pretty steep learning curve
2. 1/3 of the battles are a uphill battle (wrong wave)
3. the most expensive units could never reach the table (bad DS)
4. many armies have good anti daemon rules (say hi to: null zone / GK's / master of the fleet / runepriest staff / etc.)
5. lack of AT guns (they make it up in anti infantry though, but with current meta it's not good enough)

Vaktathi
05-03-2011, 08:32
People like to bring up Eldar a lot. Eldar can sometimes be difficult, but really aren't as hard as many like to think they are. They practically played themselves in 4th, and many builds now don't require much more in the way of thought than most SM armies.

Dark Eldar on the other hand are very difficult to play properly. Not quite as hard as before, but are still probably the easiest army to cripple in one shooting phase if the opportunity is presented to an opponent.

There's also a huge difference between skill required to play and a book just not being all that effective. Necrons for instance don't take an inordinate amount of skill to play next to many other armies, it's just very hard to win with them due to the nature of their book and the 5E rules.

Harold Zoid
05-03-2011, 09:17
Witch hunters. Weak infantry, overpriced transports, sub-par long range shooting, lots of kps, almost no close combat capabilty (2+ canoness dies easily to massed attacks from basic infantry).

PyroSikTh
05-03-2011, 09:29
I'm going to have to echo the Daemons sentiments.

I play Dark Eldar, and I still think Daemons are more challenging. They just don't have the anti-mech capabilities required. I used them once against Mech Guard. I knew I just didn't stand a chance. It's hard enough for Daemons to deal with a few Razorbacks, let alone 10 Chimeras and 2 Leman Russ tanks.

Other than that, the only half of your army really sucks, as does having 2/3rds of the codex specialised in combat, but have to sit there for a turn out in the open.

KronusDaSneaky
05-03-2011, 09:35
Pure Grey Knight Daemonhunter Lists, tiny army with all the vulnerabilities of normal marines and very limited anti tank. Often need to rely on raider spam to be remotely competitive.

Armies that are hard to play but good in the end include Daemons, Eldar, Nids and DE


Witch hunters. Weak infantry, overpriced transports, sub-par long range shooting, lots of kps, almost no close combat capability (2+ canoness dies easily to massed attacks from basic infantry).

????

Witch hunters are pretty good army, very good if your factor in their age. With army wide access to flamers and melta, one of the best tanks in the game (exocist), one of the best troop choices (who would say no to 11pt for a bolter, power armour and bs 4) and a quasi-psychic power system, known as faith, which because they are not psychic powers can't be stopped in the usual manner. I would agree they might not be simplistic as marines to use well but WH are simple enough. When I play DH on the other hand I come with the knowledge I am playing with a disadvantage from the off and need to work twice hard to turn it into a victory.

They are a little more challanging then SM lists but far easier then some armies already mentioned (doesnt take a degree degree in tactics to use an army that is basically all mounted in rhinos, has bolters, powerarmour, flamers and meltas) and still relatively competitive. They compare far more favourably to their sister codex, daemonhunters which struggles far more to present a challange esp against the 5th edition codexs. Just to clarify I own large armies of both DH and WH. I also own daemons and I confirm the frustrations many people have with them though ironically they are still a lot more competitive then DH

Woodsman
05-03-2011, 10:42
People like to bring up Eldar a lot. Eldar can sometimes be difficult, but really aren't as hard as many like to think they are. They practically played themselves in 4th, and many builds now don't require much more in the way of thought than most SM armies.


Totally. You can build a challenging Eldar army or you can build one that basically just forces you to prioritise targets; no more, no less. Having had a starcannon spam list back when they were good, there was no real challenge in playing eldar. T3 is only an issue when things are walking around getting shot, you can hide everything in serpent if you wish.

I still use the old harlie list occasionally. It's good for a laugh.

Harold Zoid
05-03-2011, 13:20
????

Witch hunters are pretty good army, very good if your factor in their age. With army wide access to flamers and melta, one of the best tanks in the game (exocist), one of the best troop choices (who would say no to 11pt for a bolter, power armour and bs 4) and a quasi-psychic power system, known as faith, which because they are not psychic powers can't be stopped in the usual manner. I would agree they might not be simplistic as marines to use well but WH are simple enough. When I play DH on the other hand I come with the knowledge I am playing with a disadvantage from the off and need to work twice hard to turn it into a victory.

They are a little more challanging then SM lists but far easier then some armies already mentioned (doesnt take a degree degree in tactics to use an army that is basically all mounted in rhinos, has bolters, powerarmour, flamers and meltas) and still relatively competitive. They compare far more favourably to their sister codex, daemonhunters which struggles far more to present a challange esp against the 5th edition codexs. Just to clarify I own large armies of both DH and WH. I also own daemons and I confirm the frustrations many people have with them though ironically they are still a lot more competitive then DH

I have four armies (WH, SM, BA, DE), so I had a chance to compare their effectiveness agains various opponents :)

1. Before space wolves, IG and blood angels came out I would agree that sisters are a good troops choice. Now they are definitely sub-par. 10 grey hunters in a rhino cost less than 10 sisters in a rhino, have roughly the same shooting power (on average, divine guidance gives 1-2 ap1 hits with bolters) and have cheaper meltas and flamers. Oh, and they will easily beat sisters in close combat. BA assault squad with a priest nearby can easily survive divine guided rapid fire (even with flamers, thanks to wound allocation) and then will most definitely murder the sisters which shot them. Of course, it's possible to concentrate fire to wipe out a full BA squad, but if your opponent plays well he will not let his army to be destroyed part by part.
IG - do I need to say anything about it? :)
Yes, basic sisters costs 11 points, that's good. But upgrades and rhino are expensive, and a sister squad is definitely not a cheap troop choice.
Where I play people mostly use WAAC lists, sisters definitely suffer in such metagame.
2. Exorcist is random and useless after one weapon destroyed result. Long fangs cost less and shoot better if exorcist rolls averagely, not 5-6 only (and are more survivable), BA las+ak predator costs the same, is fast and does not fear weapon destroyed result as much.
3. Acts of faith are the only thing keeping sisters playable. However every army has to have at least something that they do good, right?
4. DH are weaker. I agree with that. They are being released really soon so it's irrelevant.
5. Daemons are not hard to play. All I see are cloned fatecrusher lists. lucky scatter? Yay, they come and crush me. Bad scatter? They die. Drop, then move towards your enemy hoping that re-rolls would save you. One of the most boring lists in the game IMO.
6. As for necrons, they are simply a bad codex. Against newer armies they die. There is nothing challenging in playing them because in competitive environment they simly stand almost no chance.

Inach
05-03-2011, 14:35
5. Daemons are not hard to play. All I see are cloned fatecrusher lists. lucky scatter? Yay, they come and crush me. Bad scatter? They die. Drop, then move towards your enemy hoping that re-rolls would save you. One of the most boring lists in the game IMO.

Most of the dex's have a powerbuild, daemons have fateweaver lists. Thats still no auto win. 1/3 chance still to get wrong wave, DS problems and Mass small arms fire on fateweaver.
And not all daemon players play fateweaver lists (I never fielded him (played like <100 battles with daemons))...
I would say, try them a couple of times, the first 10 battles are against your self to get grip on the army. After that... it's challanging:D

Harold Zoid
05-03-2011, 14:46
I didn't said it was an auto-win. However I don't think that fatecrusher list is challenging to play. It is really straightforward and does not require any complex tactics.

htmlord
05-03-2011, 15:22
I think the point here is that the OP wants a list that can be competitive, but takes skill and planning to be successful. What Zoid said is that Fatecrusher lists take almost no skill or planning, they either get lucky and are successful or they don't get lucky and they lose.

Similarly, most Thunderwolf Cav based armies are very one dimensional: throw your Cav at your opponent behind massed ML fire and hope for the best.

I started with Tau and switched to Eldar midway through 4th ed (never played Mech Eldar, though - didn't have the hulls until 5th ed), and I have to say that the Tau were much less forgiving than the Eldar back in 4th. I've had a single forgotten jump cost me a game, or using my markerlights on the wrong target cost me the game, or railgunning the wrong tank cost me a game. Especially in 4th, you had to plan your shooting phase from start to finish before you fired a single shot or you lost (or at least I did). In contrast, I felt that my Eldar were much simpler- shoot the antitank at the tanks, the antiinfantry at the infantry, and charge the stragglers with my Harlies. The specialization made the shooting and cc phases very straightforward. I would say that the main challenge to an Eldar army (of either variety) lies in the movement phase - putting the right units in the right places - and in deployment. Having the right units where you need them makes or breaks the army, but at least you know which units should be allocated where.

PyroSikTh
05-03-2011, 15:25
Pure Grey Knight Daemonhunter Lists, tiny army with all the vulnerabilities of normal marines and very limited anti tank. Often need to rely on raider spam to be remotely competitive.


Only for another month though ;)

night2501
05-03-2011, 15:42
I would trow another vote for TAU, the gunline aproach just does not work that well with them as people think, mostly because even SM can outshot/outrange them, also in the current edition with how fast some units can crash your lines gunline is not the best option.
also given how important assault is in 40K tau are even worse than guard at assault! they are almost as fragile as eldar for the most part (basic troop is T3 SV4+), no power weapons, BS on par with guard, mid/low body count, hell playing with them is hard but rewarding, i would say try TAU a bit and then decide

3+savesarefornoobs
06-03-2011, 03:06
My vote is for either of the eldar armies.

Especially if you've learnt to play the game behind a 3+ brick wall. Big learning curve and subtle tactics.

Read my name.

Malphax
06-03-2011, 06:18
Modern Tau tactics are extremely complicated, because they can't really effectively mechanize because their transports have no fire points and most of their firepower comes from the crisis suits and broadsides. The static gunline dies to outflankers unless you do a lot of creative deployment (bubble-wrap) and often extensive use of Kroot and Piranhas are necessary to block the millions of super-fast assaulty units.

At this point in time, 40K is very poorly balanced. All of the 5th edition codexes are stupidly strong compared to their predecessors (except for Tyranids, which are rather weak, and Dark Eldar, which are generally considered to be well-balanced) and the old codexes simply can't stand up to them without severe min/maxing. You CAN still win with an older codex, but it will be an uphill battle against a new codex.

So, really, any older codex would fit into the "challenging" category. Of course, you can build a challenging list out of any codex, even super-strong ones, if you restrict your options.

3+savesarefornoobs
06-03-2011, 22:30
It's probably Tau.

Failing that its either Eldar, Sisters of Battle, or Dark Eldar.

It's definitely NOT space marines. Learn to play without 3+ saves.

Robot Unicorn
06-03-2011, 23:53
It's definitely NOT space marines. Learn to play without 3+ saves.

We get it. You're a unique snowflake, cool.

On topic, I'm surprised to see so many people saying CWE, when they are pretty easy to play in my experience.

Rated_lexxx
07-03-2011, 02:07
I have seen my friend play demons and it seems so difficult to play.

kingbsa
07-03-2011, 20:12
thanks guys for the imput looks like ill probally go with the tau

3+savesarefornoobs
08-03-2011, 17:39
thanks guys for the imput looks like ill probally go with the tau

I don't recommend it. You should go with Dark Eldar, they take a lot of skill to play and can still compete with the big boys once you get some skills.

Wait on Tau until they get a update, Dark Eldar is the MOST RECENT 40k codex to have come out and its been the best Xenos release ever.

New models coming out in May as well.

Lord Gabranth
08-03-2011, 17:45
I don't recommend it. You should go with Dark Eldar, they take a lot of skill to play and can still compete with the big boys once you get some skills.

Wait on Tau until they get a update, Dark Eldar is the MOST RECENT 40k codex to have come out and its been the best Xenos release ever.

New models coming out in May as well.

The point of his topic was that he was looking for the most difficult army to play as, not the most balanced