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intact01
29-11-2011, 23:57
Hello Warseer, well as you may guessed by the name of the Thread, i need a bit of help, Im going to be starting Tomb Kings soon. I have not played Tomb Kings before but i have played Skaven.

Anyway i was wondering which options would be more viable against a large array of races, I will be against my group of friends and know, only a bit about the Tomb kings and was wanting to know from people who have played them or against them which options would be good on a wider scale of races and what would be best against the certain races


The Races i will be up against are
-Ogres
-Chaos (Possibly)
-Wood Elves
-Orcs and Gobbos
-Dwarves

I will be starting my force off with A Tomb Prince, A Liche Priest, A Tomb Kings Battalion, and another box of Skeletons, and yes i allready own the Army book. So i was just wondering what would more viable?

The First Question is, What would be best to allocate my 40 skeletons in units of?
-A unit of 30 Skeletons Spears/shields (or HW/Shields) and 10 Archers?

-A unit of 40 Skeletons (Spears or HW) And no archers?

-Or 20/20 Ratio?

Secondly the games we are Currently playing are in the 1000-1250 point range, should i take my 8 Horsemen as Horsearchers? Or spear Cavalry?

And Finnaly, our group will be going up to 1500/1750 points what do you recommend i add to the standing figures i have, for the races i will be playing ^_^?

Again thanks for comments i know i asked a bunch of questions and this was long as hell, but i was just looking for some input from people who are not actually newbies with or against tombkings (like myself), Thanks in Advanced!

Intact01

vinny t
30-11-2011, 00:23
make all your skellies archers, regular skellies are almost useless. Use your horsemen as archers. For the races you play against, as they are relatively cannon light and low initiative, I would pick up at least one sphinx, and maybe a unit each of Necroknights, and then find some extra tails and make 3 sepulchral stalkers. That ought to be a good start.

intact01
30-11-2011, 00:34
make all your skellies archers, regular skellies are almost useless. Yea the only problem with that though is i didnt want to have a full army of Skeleton archers wanted some sort of Skeleton Block (For looks and My own Happiness),so i will keep atleast half of the Skeletons warriors, Other then that, thank you for your Post helps alot :D

w3rm
30-11-2011, 01:22
I despise skeleton warriors. Personally use a unit of Tomb Guard for that purpose.

friendsofrhomb
30-11-2011, 05:34
I can understand your adverse reaction to just using archers, I bought two battalion boxes and made 40 archers and 40 warriors....The warriors have sucked in every game I've played, although I take them for character, and because I really dont like the idea of just having big shooting blocks and constructs.

I recently bought 50 of the old metal tomb guard to take the role of combat block, so the warriors are going to have all their arms ripped off and turned into archers :)

Make sure you make good use of the chariots in the battalion box, they are awesome, especially in those smaller games you will be playing

Enigmatik1
30-11-2011, 13:46
Yeah...I've gotta co-sign the "don't field Skeleton Warriors" sentiment. We all kinda got lulled into a false sense of security with MWBD, but in application it does next to nothing to help Skeleton Warriors survive longer in close combat and Kings and Princes are not powerful enough to stop/overcome the proverbial hemorrhaging of combat resolution that Skeletons induce. A Bloodshed King can sometimes against T3 infantry but why are you fielding a Bloodshed King on foot when he can melt face in a chariot unit? I will say though that when the stars align and Cthulhu rises from the depths and your opponent fails a Fear test, Skeleton Warriors being hit on 5s is actually kinda good...but that only happens once every 27,000 years. ;)

Our only viable infantry is still, sadly, Tomb Guard in a majority of situations and Tomb Guard units get really expensive, really quickly. Still, they're the best we have and pretty good at whatever you need them to do and that's OK in my book. :)

Althwen
30-11-2011, 14:33
You should really dig up the Tomb King Tactica thread and post in there. It could do with some reanimation ;)

Anyway, I've been really stubborn about my skeleton warriors as started TK's because my gaming group's metagame consists mainly of Elite armies like Elves, Daemons and Chaos warriors.
But as it turns out, even with MWBD skeleton hordes just aren't as effective as any other horde. And without some key advantages, all there's really left is a big block that has 'target me with Dwellers plx' written all over it.

I plan on getting a second battalion for TK's and out of those 40 new skellies, about 30 will be turned into archers and the other 10 will get the 'plain skelly drop' treatment.

Spiney Norman
30-11-2011, 15:52
make all your skellies archers, regular skellies are almost useless.

No they're not, people just use them for the wrong purpose. If you try and buff a horde of skeletons into a deathstar by throwing in a King, Necrotect and a cocktail of buff spells at them then you're always going to be disappointed as the inevitable spell failures or miscasts ruin your day.

If you use skeletons for what they are actually good at (which is tar-pitting, and maintaining ranks to prevent enemy steadfast) and support them with your heavy hitters they are certainly worth their points.

Skeleton warriors need deep ranks, small frontage and a heavy hitting unit (sphinx, Colossus, GW Ushabti, TG, or Knights) to support them by providing kills while they keep the enemy unit un-steadfast. TG can't do that job effectively because they are too expensive, but skellies excel at it.

TheDrugLordX
30-11-2011, 18:04
No they're not, people just use them for the wrong purpose. If you try and buff a horde of skeletons into a deathstar by throwing in a King, Necrotect and a cocktail of buff spells at them then you're always going to be disappointed as the inevitable spell failures or miscasts ruin your day.

If you use skeletons for what they are actually good at (which is tar-pitting, and maintaining ranks to prevent enemy steadfast) and support them with your heavy hitters they are certainly worth their points.

Skeleton warriors need deep ranks, small frontage and a heavy hitting unit (sphinx, Colossus, GW Ushabti, TG, or Knights) to support them by providing kills while they keep the enemy unit un-steadfast. TG can't do that job effectively because they are too expensive, but skellies excel at it.

This is all just... incorrect.

If you hit the enemy with your skellies at the same time as your hard hitting units, the skellies will feed your enemy with so much combat resolution that your hard hitters will also crumble. No unit in the TK arsenal (except for maybe horde of TG + king + necrotect) is powerfull enough to supply the killyness needed to outscore an enemy elite in killing skeleton warriors.

I've had units of 40 skeleton warriors evaporate in a single round of combat because of crumble. Had it been ANY OTHER UNIT (at similar pts cost) it would have been way more durable (making skellies a really bad tarpitter in comparison).

The skeletons even have a worse statline than other 4pts models (goblins, clanrats etc) meaning that they, statistically, even lose where the fight is pretty much even... Heck even SLAVES beat them!

And you can't get them into a fight on their turf, because they're movement 4 without the possibility to march. This is the units biggest downside since large units (40+) are too clunky to wheel around and will get stuck in combat with anything that wants to fight it.

For +2pts/modell you get a unit that is really good at shooting, and it performs just as good in combat.

As for the cavalry, horsemen have actually performed better for me. But that's a perference of choice.

Enigmatik1
30-11-2011, 19:53
This is all just... incorrect.

If you hit the enemy with your skellies at the same time as your hard hitting units, the skellies will feed your enemy with so much combat resolution that your hard hitters will also crumble. No unit in the TK arsenal (except for maybe horde of TG + king + necrotect) is powerfull enough to supply the killyness needed to outscore an enemy elite in killing skeleton warriors.

I've had units of 40 skeleton warriors evaporate in a single round of combat because of crumble. Had it been ANY OTHER UNIT (at similar pts cost) it would have been way more durable (making skellies a really bad tarpitter in comparison).

The skeletons even have a worse statline than other 4pts models (goblins, clanrats etc) meaning that they, statistically, even lose where the fight is pretty much even... Heck even SLAVES beat them!

And you can't get them into a fight on their turf, because they're movement 4 without the possibility to march. This is the units biggest downside since large units (40+) are too clunky to wheel around and will get stuck in combat with anything that wants to fight it.

For +2pts/modell you get a unit that is really good at shooting, and it performs just as good in combat.

As for the cavalry, horsemen have actually performed better for me. But that's a perference of choice.

Your experiences echo my own, but the one thing we have to realize is that this situation is extremely metagame dependent. In mine, the worst infantry I see (outside of Skaven Slaves and Clanrats) are Dryads, Saurus Warriors, Ogre Bulls and Perma-Razor Elves. In my circle, Skeleton Warriors do not work regardless of what you do to them or how many characters you cram in the unit.

The average margin of loss for any Skeletal unit I've ever fielded hovers around 15. Now, while other armies get to remain Steadfast on LD9+, we lose 15 more models on top of the slew killed in the actual battel...basically leaving you with 1-2 ranks if you're lucky and they're gone next round. Nothing in our army can overcome a -15 CR defecit except a red hot Bone Giant, a Thundercrushing/Fire Breathing Warsphinx or a S5 chariot bus lead by a Bloodshed King. Anything else is going to crumble into oblivion a vast majority of the time unless you fielded units of 100 Skeletons...but who wants to do that? :mad: I had a unit of 8 Ogre Bulls plus a Bruiser recently charge into 40 match-sticks plus my King and a Herald. When that fiasco was over, I'd killed 2 bulls via my characters and to show for my efforts, I'd lost all of my Skeletons and my King and Herald each had a wound remaining after allocation.

Maybe in Spiney's that's not the case...where he is faced with units that Skeletons actually have a chance of holding against. Note, I did not say defeat.

intact01
30-11-2011, 23:53
Well i have decided to take atleast 30-40 (probably 40 to make it a horde) Skeleton warriors, i will have 60 Skeletons in total, 20 or 30 of which allocated as Archers, My decision is just do to fluff, no tomb king shouldnt have his valiant warriors and footsoldiers at his side, and plus we are going to be playing campaigns in the future and i really do love the look of Skeleton Warriors so i will be keeping them. the only problem i can see with them is how slow they are and with my plans for such a big unit.

I do have a question regarding these skeleton warriors though, as many of you despise them,you have played them though and what worked better? Skeletons with HW/Shields to tarpit the enemy, or give them Spears to add some sort of damage output? (Yes i probably will have Horde of them i do believe)

Spiney Norman
01-12-2011, 00:07
This is all just... incorrect.

If you hit the enemy with your skellies at the same time as your hard hitting units, the skellies will feed your enemy with so much combat resolution that your hard hitters will also crumble. No unit in the TK arsenal (except for maybe horde of TG + king + necrotect) is powerfull enough to supply the killyness needed to outscore an enemy elite in killing skeleton warriors.

Good god man, I didn't suggest you send them toe to toe with the best CC infantry in the game, yes if you throw them against Chaos chosen or swordsmaster you'll get rightly crushed (I don't know what makes anyone think that 4pt/model units should be able to stand up to units like that anyway really).


I've had units of 40 skeleton warriors evaporate in a single round of combat because of crumble. Had it been ANY OTHER UNIT (at similar pts cost) it would have been way more durable (making skellies a really bad tarpitter in comparison).

Losing 40 in one round is unfortunate, but there aren't that many units that can cause 20 casualties on skeletons outside of horded super-elites/other death star units, so it basically comes back to stop trying to use a skeleton unit to stop the hardest units in the game.


The skeletons even have a worse statline than other 4pts models (goblins, clanrats etc) meaning that they, statistically, even lose where the fight is pretty much even... Heck even SLAVES beat them!

Stat lines are not everything, skeletons will not run, ever, for any reason, goblins will run the first time they are called on to take a panic check unless they are next to the general (and goblin armies tend to be so big that not everyone can be next to the general). The other massive difference you're overlooking is that skeletons can be guaranteed to hold until the last model has fallen, once any other low-cost unit loses its steadfast then its gone.


And you can't get them into a fight on their turf, because they're movement 4 without the possibility to march. This is the units biggest downside since large units (40+) are too clunky to wheel around and will get stuck in combat with anything that wants to fight it.

I've found 30 fielded 5 (front) x6 works best for me. Also regarding the march thing, if you're playing TK without a magic phase they you're doing something wrong (and I've played enough to know that with a couple of LoN wizards you can usually get desert wind off at least once every couple of turns).


For +2pts/modell you get a unit that is really good at shooting, and it performs just as good in combat.

2pts more per model is increasing the cost of the unit by 50%, thats quite a lot in the grand scheme of things, and archers do not perform as well in combat, losing the 6+/6++ makes a difference, esp the parry ward, also when you consider that the warrior unit will be 50% larger than an equivalently priced archer unit it will definitely last longer in combat.


As for the cavalry, horsemen have actually performed better for me. But that's a perference of choice.

I've also used Horsemen and again they're useful as a support unit, but at the end of the day they're just skeletons that move at 2x speed and can't parry. They also have the ignominy of being worse than the archer equivalent and the same price.


Your experiences echo my own, but the one thing we have to realize is that this situation is extremely metagame dependent. In mine, the worst infantry I see (outside of Skaven Slaves and Clanrats) are Dryads, Saurus Warriors, Ogre Bulls and Perma-Razor Elves. In my circle, Skeleton Warriors do not work regardless of what you do to them or how many characters you cram in the unit.
...

Maybe in Spiney's that's not the case...where he is faced with units that Skeletons actually have a chance of holding against. Note, I did not say defeat.

You seem to be playing in a far more competitive environ than I, I'm assuming the razored elfs is because of Teclis or a book of hoeth? I don't see those much as our HE player realised a while back that it wasn't winning them any friends, plus for whatever reason he actually seems to enjoy fielding his dragon lord. I see a lot of Empire halberdiers, greatswords, dwarf warriors, night goblins, orcs and Men-at-arms and I rarely take more than 7-8 casualties and usually cause one or two in return, plus whatever carnage the supporting chariots/warsphinx does.

In most circumstances I try and charge my skeletons and chariots/Knight/warsphinx in together against the same target, on the other hand if things get desperate, 30 skeletons can be relied upon to hold for a turn vs any non-elite infantry which allows me to get my chariots in the flank.

Goldenwolf
01-12-2011, 00:51
Unfortunately I agree with the Anti-Skeleton Warrior crowd. They just seem to need too much to stand up to any heavy hitter. Charging anything in with the Skellies means that it dies by CR, so it is just free points for your opponent.

I am thinking 12 Chariots at 2500 will get you your core points spent, and then you can spend the rest on Tomb Guard and Sphinx units.

I am having real trouble trying to get an army that REALLY is able to beat a heavy hitter army with the Tomb Kings. In my area 3+ Horde infantry blocks is common, and T4 is usual.

vinny t
01-12-2011, 01:59
Spiney Norman, I have to disagree. You advocate using skeletons to tarpit things like men-at-arms and then sending in a sphinx to actually kill models. The only problem that I see with this is that it only takes one bad round for you to lose the sphinx. Let's take men at arms as an example. Both of your units charge in, the sphinx kills 7-12ish if thundercrush hits, and around 5 if it doesnt. You win combat and the men at arms hold on steadfast. Now you are in a very very bad situation. If they get off any buff spell like +2/4 T, Wyssans, or anything like that you will be hard-pressed for your sphinx to survive. If a unit of knights then charges your skeletons, your sphinx will likely die. It isnt that the Skeletons cant hold up equally pathetic units in combat, its that committing the necessary forces to finish off the skeleton's target is too risky to consider. Taking skeletons in units of 30 is 120 points. 20 archers can basically serve the same purpose and also kill little annoying units like shades. Their speed is also abhorrent, but they simply dont serve a necessary role in a TK army. Chariots are faster and actually do damage, Archers kill little units and can hold up in a pinch, and horsemen are able to kill warmachines and harass people. I used to use 3 units of 35 skeletons 5x7 with a TP in one. This worked pretty well until opponents were able to concentrate enough of their forces to destroy them in one or two rounds of combat.

Yamabushi
01-12-2011, 02:22
Mmmm how can a Warsphinx kill around 5 if the thundercrush misses? 4 crew + Thunderstomp and potential breath weapon means at least 10+ dead, and that's not counting what kills the skeletons may have contributed, which may be more, if they fail their Fear tests). The men at arms may or may not be steadfast, depending on how many ranks your skellies have.

Also, if we factor in magic for the Brets, then we have to factor in stuff like Righteous Smiting, Protection and maybe even Doom and Darkness for the Kings.


its that committing the necessary forces to finish off the skeleton's target is too risky to consider

^ Fully agree. We have to pick our fights very carefully.

On the other hand, I would field hordes of skellies of both varieties against Elves of various kinds.

vinny t
01-12-2011, 04:11
4 crew, usually needing 4s to hit and 3s to wound means 1.32 wounds before saves. A 6+ parry means 1.1 wounds from the crew. For thunderstomps, an average of 3.5 hits translates to roughly 3 wounds. 7 hits from the breath weapon means 4.6662 wounds. So, assuming a 6++ save (from other skeletons or something similar) means that missing with thundercrush, and using the one-use-only breath weapon, the Sphinx deals 9 wounds. So, greater than 5, but I wasnt factoring in the breath weapon. I also wasn't citing magic as a factor in the combat per se, but rather just suggesting that magic is a huge factor that can easily result in the death of your monster. 1 round of smiting/protection won't make or break a combat in favor of the TK, in my experience, but one round of Flesh to Stone can certainly break it against the TK.

So, I guess my belabored point is that instead of using skeletons and a sphinx against a horde unit, just use the sphinx. The risk of losing it to skeleton fueled rez is gone, and the breath weapon/thundercrush can protect it in sticky situations. Skeletons look best when holding bows and shooting fast cav.

Yamabushi
01-12-2011, 06:03
Yup, your point stands. Its just that the example involving Man At Arms which I wished to touch upon. They have crappy WS2 and even crappier Ld, so I suppose it got me thinking on how can the Sphinx have only 5 kills, as even the crew will hit on 3s and wound on 2s on the charge.

Anyway, lets keep the topic moving on.... Our skellies NEED a prince / king inside for that WS boost to even stand a chance. Has anyone here tried say, a defensive prince inside a block of say, 50-60 skellies?

Althwen
01-12-2011, 09:44
Anyway, lets keep the topic moving on.... Our skellies NEED a prince / king inside for that WS boost to even stand a chance. Has anyone here tried say, a defensive prince inside a block of say, 50-60 skellies?

I ran a king with the 2+ armour and dragon bane gem and a greatweapon inside a unit of 52 skellies.
Reason for it being a king and not a prince is because my metagame consists mostly of HE, DE and Daemons. So the difference between having WS 5 and having WS 6 is huge.

The unit more often than not provided a visual threat rather than actually doing something.
They did hold against 30 spearmen and 14w hite Lions until the Warsphinx could charge them and eventually win the combat, but in other battles they also found themselves being a huge favourite for the Dwellers Below.

So, they work, but the unit will cost a bit, and in a 2k point battle it will almost certainly mean you'll be spending a good deal more on core choices than is nessecary.
Because you don't really want to leave without some chariots, oh and ofcourse your archer bunker and maybe a drop of 10 skeletons...

Crovax20
01-12-2011, 10:55
Makes me a bit sad to see skeleton warriors being viewed so bad. Like some other posters have pointed out, you want to include one because it fits the fluff so good... I am personally going for a 2250 list with a unit of 40 skeleton warriors, even though I know they are pretty much garbage. i'll have to rely on the 6 chariots, 30 tombguard, necrosphinx, casket and 30 archers to do the job, and will just throw the 230 points unit away to my enemy as a speedbump.

TheDrugLordX
01-12-2011, 11:10
4 crew, usually needing 4s to hit and 3s to wound means 1.32 wounds before saves. A 6+ parry means 1.1 wounds from the crew. For thunderstomps, an average of 3.5 hits translates to roughly 3 wounds. 7 hits from the breath weapon means 4.6662 wounds. So, assuming a 6++ save (from other skeletons or something similar) means that missing with thundercrush, and using the one-use-only breath weapon, the Sphinx deals 9 wounds. So, greater than 5, but I wasnt factoring in the breath weapon. I also wasn't citing magic as a factor in the combat per se, but rather just suggesting that magic is a huge factor that can easily result in the death of your monster. 1 round of smiting/protection won't make or break a combat in favor of the TK, in my experience, but one round of Flesh to Stone can certainly break it against the TK.

So, I guess my belabored point is that instead of using skeletons and a sphinx against a horde unit, just use the sphinx. The risk of losing it to skeleton fueled rez is gone, and the breath weapon/thundercrush can protect it in sticky situations. Skeletons look best when holding bows and shooting fast cav.
You hit an important note when you bring up magic. Sure the lore of nehekara is a very useful lore, it's just not useful when it comes to boosting skeleton warriors. 5 to 10 extra attacks (depending on formation) at ws2 and s3 just doesn't cut it, and increasing their parry to 5+ doesn't either. While other races can cast very powerful buff spells to increase their units combat abilitys we are very limited. Healing d3+1 is negligible when we die up to 30 warriors in a turn. While lore of light is awesome with TG/knights/sphinx it has the same problems as lore of nehekara when it comes to buffing skeleton warriors. Soulblight and Desication is the best "buff" we have, but we cannnot reliably get them without investing very heavily in magic, and if I do that I don't think I want to spend lots of magic in buffing my skeleton warriors...

As for the movement spell; forcing us to sacrifice our superior magic phase to be able to keep up with even dwarves? I would buy it if the points cost in our units would be reduced for this, but with 4pts/model skeletons that has crumble (BIG downside compared to steadfast infantry) I don't buy it. Besides they could easily focus their dispel dice on the movement spell if it's that important, effectively shutting us down.

Things would look alot different if he had like wyssans wildform (reliable to get, stable infantry buffer) or a good healing spell then things would look alot different. As previsouly stated, nothing in the TK book synergise with skeletons at all (rather they unsynergise --> crumble) which is what makes them terrible.

Sorry for wall of text :D



Anyway, lets keep the topic moving on.... Our skellies NEED a prince / king inside for that WS boost to even stand a chance. Has anyone here tried say, a defensive prince inside a block of say, 50-60 skellies?
When I had the most success with my skeletons I ran a unit of 40 with spears and light armor + a king. They actually did put up quite a fight against a iron gut death star. That was with some luck on my side however.

Here's hoping GW realises their mistake when VC is realesed and fixes it, and realeses an errata to fix the TK ones...

Crovax20
01-12-2011, 11:23
Skeleton warriors basically need steadfast. Its like they were designed with the benefit of steadfast taken into account. Would people consider skeleton warriors if they could benefit from the following

Steadfast- Undead units that have more ranks than the enemy, will only loose up to a maximum of X (lets say 3-5) extra models if they lose combat

Even a unit of 45 night goblins feels better than 45 skeletons at the moment. 45 night goblins would be able to get an effective toughness 4 against same amount of points of skeletons. Which pretty much means the goblins will statistically win combat most of the time.

Enigmatik1
01-12-2011, 14:27
You seem to be playing in a far more competitive environ than I, I'm assuming the razored elfs is because of Teclis or a book of hoeth? I don't see those much as our HE player realised a while back that it wasn't winning them any friends, plus for whatever reason he actually seems to enjoy fielding his dragon lord. I see a lot of Empire halberdiers, greatswords, dwarf warriors, night goblins, orcs and Men-at-arms and I rarely take more than 7-8 casualties and usually cause one or two in return, plus whatever carnage the supporting chariots/warsphinx does.

In most circumstances I try and charge my skeletons and chariots/Knight/warsphinx in together against the same target, on the other hand if things get desperate, 30 skeletons can be relied upon to hold for a turn vs any non-elite infantry which allows me to get my chariots in the flank.

I guess I do. I hadn't really given it too much thought until I read your reply because we don't generally take the game too seriously but the simple truth is its only against Skaven do I ever see an enemy unit across the table from me that Skeleton Warriors stand a chance against in close combat. Surprisingly, I have not yet faced Teclis nor the Book of Hoeth but the Shadow Archmage is pretty much obligatory. Our Dark Elf player is new and I haven't played him but it's only a matter of time before he catches on. He may not though, as he likes using Dark Magic immensely but I can see him running a L2 Shadow Mage because Mindrazor is just too good in the hands of Elves.




Things would look alot different if he had like wyssans wildform (reliable to get, stable infantry buffer) or a good healing spell then things would look alot different. As previsouly stated, nothing in the TK book synergise with skeletons at all (rather they unsynergise --> crumble) which is what makes them terrible.

When I had the most success with my skeletons I ran a unit of 40 with spears and light armor + a king. They actually did put up quite a fight against a iron gut death star. That was with some luck on my side however.

Here's hoping GW realises their mistake when VC is realesed and fixes it, and realeses an errata to fix the TK ones...

I'm with you 100%. It just seems like we have to over invest in a unit of Skeletons to make them effective. Most of the reports I read in which they perform well it's when they're being led by a character (or two) and have 2 Priests devoting a majority of the magic phase just to keep them on the table long enough to make a difference. This falls largely on the lack of ability to take advantage of the new rules in 8E designed to help infantry and the fact that MWBD doesn't do enough to do what it needs to do and that's help Skeletons mitigate damage taken. WS3-4 units still hit them on 4s. If they were hitting them on 5s instead, we'd be in business.

If Undead infantry had some way to benefit from Steadfast, none of this would be an issue imo although it would probably make Tomb/Grave Guard too powerful.

Goldenwolf
01-12-2011, 23:04
This is the same issue that VC have with Skellies/Zombies. You want to take them for the background material, but they are horrible and not worth their points.

Spiney Norman
06-12-2011, 11:17
I guess I do. I hadn't really given it too much thought until I read your reply because we don't generally take the game too seriously but the simple truth is its only against Skaven do I ever see an enemy unit across the table from me that Skeleton Warriors stand a chance against in close combat. Surprisingly, I have not yet faced Teclis nor the Book of Hoeth but the Shadow Archmage is pretty much obligatory. Our Dark Elf player is new and I haven't played him but it's only a matter of time before he catches on. He may not though, as he likes using Dark Magic immensely but I can see him running a L2 Shadow Mage because Mindrazor is just too good in the hands of Elves.


I might be being a little dense here, but do you regularly find yourself in situations where you fail to dispel any of your opponent's magic? I get that DE have the tools to make the power scroll into an auto-IF machine, but that is only good for one spell, and the resulting miscast could easily do as much damage to the DE army as a unit of razored elves could do to you.

Most lores in WFB only have one spell that you absolutely have to stop (death is the main exception to this as it has at least 2, possibly 3), and for shadows Razor is that one spell, I agree that shadow is a great lore and that many of the other spells are significant inconveniences, but razor is the one to stop. I don't usually have much difficulty stopping one spell a turn.

Enigmatik1
06-12-2011, 14:31
I might be being a little dense here, but do you regularly find yourself in situations where you fail to dispel any of your opponent's magic? I get that DE have the tools to make the power scroll into an auto-IF machine, but that is only good for one spell, and the resulting miscast could easily do as much damage to the DE army as a unit of razored elves could do to you.

Most lores in WFB only have one spell that you absolutely have to stop (death is the main exception to this as it has at least 2, possibly 3), and for shadows Razor is that one spell, I agree that shadow is a great lore and that many of the other spells are significant inconveniences, but razor is the one to stop. I don't usually have much difficulty stopping one spell a turn.

Not dense at all, Spiney. That's a valid question and the answer is largely yes.

A lot of my group tends to over invest in the magic phase and they take everything that adds bonus dice (or flat bonuses) that they can get their hands on for both casting and dispelling. I simply habitually face extremely magic heavy armies and we don't have much in the way of magic defense (outside of the Kanopi and no one takes RiP spells against me because of its threat). I actually got tired of spending a crapton of points on multiple Priests that didn't really help so I stopped. These days, I run one Hero level w/ the Channeling Staff because I'm forced (Hierophant) to and I do better now than I did when I was running the "obligatory" L4 plus Acolytes. Mix that with an ample helping of having the worst luck in the magic phase known to man and it should make more sense. ;)

I also have a very strong (and probably irrational) aversion to Pit of Shades. I know I probably shouldn't...but I don't like the idea of my Tomb Guard unit plus whatever character I decide to include therein being removed in practically one fell swoop. I'm no good at mathammer. I just know that I HATE spells that remove units...anyone who has played against me knows this. It's a flaw in my game that is often exploited but I've paid for it dearly the few times I fought my instincts so it's a catch-22 I haven't figured out a way out of/around yet.

I often find myself trying to dispel rolls so high (especially on spells like Mindrazor), assuming no IF, that I need double 6s to dispel anyway...which never comes. This is mainly from LM, HE and DE. Wood Elves and Ogres I find manageable and I haven't played Skaven or WoC since we got our new book...so we'll see. Skeletons are leaps and bounds the worst core infantry fielded among my group when taken in totality. Where slaves never seem to break and are massive enough to absorb casualties, it takes two rounds tops of anything just being in base contact to kill units of 40 when I field them. A portion of that is user error I'm sure (I was never really any good using them before...and they're much worse in the context of this edition than they used to be) but my friends just grimace and ask why I field them at all (while laughing at how badly they lose combats by themselves or combined) when we play that I'm don't think it's all user error. LOL!

Spiney Norman
06-12-2011, 15:22
Not dense at all, Spiney. That's a valid question and the answer is largely yes.

A lot of my group tends to over invest in the magic phase and they take everything that adds bonus dice (or flat bonuses) that they can get their hands on for both casting and dispelling. I simply habitually face extremely magic heavy armies and we don't have much in the way of magic defense (outside of the Kanopi and no one takes RiP spells against me because of its threat). I actually got tired of spending a crapton of points on multiple Priests that didn't really help so I stopped. These days, I run one Hero level w/ the Channeling Staff because I'm forced (Hierophant) to and I do better now than I did when I was running the "obligatory" L4 plus Acolytes. Mix that with an ample helping of having the worst luck in the magic phase known to man and it should make more sense. ;)

Ahhh, you should try true TK magic lite, take Settra as your hiero and no priests, he's an absolute badass.


I also have a very strong (and probably irrational) aversion to Pit of Shades. I know I probably shouldn't...but I don't like the idea of my Tomb Guard unit plus whatever character I decide to include therein being removed in practically one fell swoop. I'm no good at mathammer. I just know that I HATE spells that remove units...anyone who has played against me knows this. It's a flaw in my game that is often exploited but I've paid for it dearly the few times I fought my instincts so it's a catch-22 I haven't figured out a way out of/around yet.

Pit is a pain, but its a similar dilema to PSX, its unlikely to completely remove the unit (which is generally what counts for undead) so you'll likely have a chance to get at least some of them back in your next magic phase. Any high Ld with Razor can easily remove an entire unit in one hit.

I've hated pit ever since I lost a warsphinx to it, but at the end of the day Razor is definitely the more dangerous spell depending on who it is cast on.


I often find myself trying to dispel rolls so high (especially on spells like Mindrazor), assuming no IF, that I need double 6s to dispel anyway...which never comes. This is mainly from LM, HE and DE. Wood Elves and Ogres I find manageable and I haven't played Skaven or WoC since we got our new book...so we'll see. Skeletons are leaps and bounds the worst core infantry fielded among my group when taken in totality. Where slaves never seem to break and are massive enough to absorb casualties, it takes two rounds tops of anything just being in base contact to kill units of 40 when I field them. A portion of that is user error I'm sure (I was never really any good using them before...and they're much worse in the context of this edition than they used to be) but my friends just grimace and ask why I field them at all (while laughing at how badly they lose combats by themselves or combined) when we play that I'm don't think it's all user error. LOL!

Heres how I approach the dispel phase, my opponent has a lot of spells, assuming that I can dispel only one spell per turn, which would I choose to save my dice for? Then I just throw all my dice at that spell.

Death is my least favourite lore to face because I have to choose between Caress of Laniph on my hiero or PSX, in the worst case scenario I have to choose between Caress on my hiero, Fate of Bjuna on my hiero and PSX...

Character assassination spells are among the most underated spells in the game imho, the number of times my Savage orc great shaman has 'eadbutted me to victory by knocking out an enemy wizard lord because my opponent chose to dispel high level foot of Gork is beautiful.

Regarding skeletons I don't expect mine to kill anything, nor do I expect them to survive the battle, all I ask is that they do the job I want before they crumble to dust, and as long as you don't have unreasonable expectations like holding up a horde of razored elf spearmen they do that pretty well.

Snowflake
07-12-2011, 02:08
I might be being a little dense here, but do you regularly find yourself in situations where you fail to dispel any of your opponent's magic? I get that DE have the tools to make the power scroll into an auto-IF machine, but that is only good for one spell, and the resulting miscast could easily do as much damage to the DE army as a unit of razored elves could do to you.

Most lores in WFB only have one spell that you absolutely have to stop (death is the main exception to this as it has at least 2, possibly 3), and for shadows Razor is that one spell, I agree that shadow is a great lore and that many of the other spells are significant inconveniences, but razor is the one to stop. I don't usually have much difficulty stopping one spell a turn.

You do realize Power Scroll doesn't work like that anymore, right? It was changed months ago.

Skipschnitz
07-12-2011, 04:06
Skeleton warriors basically need steadfast. Its like they were designed with the benefit of steadfast taken into account. Would people consider skeleton warriors if they could benefit from the following

Steadfast- Undead units that have more ranks than the enemy, will only loose up to a maximum of X (lets say 3-5) extra models if they lose combat

Even a unit of 45 night goblins feels better than 45 skeletons at the moment. 45 night goblins would be able to get an effective toughness 4 against same amount of points of skeletons. Which pretty much means the goblins will statistically win combat most of the time.

Amen to that!!! I don't see why they couldn't have all Undead follow the same rules as Daemonic Instability. It would have made them much more playable even with there pathetic stat lines. Then it wouldn't be as much of a problem that we can't heal our characters or bring as many models back as a Life Wizard with Regrowth. Somebody throw a rock at Matt Ward and Robin Cruddace for coming up with the Unstable Rule. :evilgrin:;) I mean, Lore of Light for us??? :confused: Why not have had them be able to have Life and Death??? Would have made more fluff sense as well. :wtf:
Our group and others in the area are very competitive players and there are a lot of tournaments around here. I got to believe that I didn't waste my money on my TK's, but I'm losing faith. We have a "king of the hill" campaign going on and I'm going to try to run a 2500 pt list with 2 catapults, 2 Caskets, a Heirotitan, two units of 6 chariots with a Prince and Herald in each, and then the rest with liches and archers. These are against steam tank gun lines, 2 hydras, ogre death stars, deamon "in your face", uber type lists...so maybe I'm setting myself up again for disappointment. If the VC book comes out with similar rules...I'm not even going to waste my money on the book and my 8000 pts can sit in the closet until 9th comes out. :cries:

Mike3791
07-12-2011, 05:04
From what I've seen filling up core with chariots is the most competitive option. Chariots are very nasty core choices :skull:

GrandmasterWang
07-12-2011, 06:36
I think Skeleton Warriors are great for the cost. I don't see why everyone is saying they are garbage. They are only 4 pts a pop and will be WS 5 most of the time. The opponent has the choice of fighting WS 5/6 skeles or trying to take out the much tougher prince/king who will almost always have a ward save. Any attacks on the Prince/King is skele's not being killed and you'll only be hitting the skele's with 50% of your attacks almost always. Add in some magic buffs/ the Hatred re-rolls and you have a great regiment.

I personally find big skeleton blocks very effective for their cheap pts cost.

GrandmasterWang
07-12-2011, 06:42
This falls largely on the lack of ability to take advantage of the new rules in 8E designed to help infantry and the fact that MWBD doesn't do enough to do what it needs to do and that's help Skeletons mitigate damage taken. WS3-4 units still hit them on 4s. If they were hitting them on 5s instead, we'd be in business.


If most enemies needed 5's to hit 4pt unbreakable troops then skeletons would be broken as hell.

Against troops such as GW Dwarfs/Hammerers the 4+ instead of 3+ to hit makes a huge difference. Also, with a Prince in their the Skeletons will actually hit DE Spearmen/Dwarf warriors on a 3+ which also makes a big difference for the overall combat result. I mean we are just talking about cheap troops here. It's not like they cost 8pts anymore.

You mentioned previously that the average margin you'd lose combat with the skele's was 15 (therefore another 15 crumbling) Can you please provide a couple of examples of these combats as in normal circumstances I think the Skele's should do much better vs most troops. (not swordmasters etc etc)

Spiney Norman
07-12-2011, 08:58
You do realize Power Scroll doesn't work like that anymore, right? It was changed months ago.

Yes of course, I knew there had to be a reason why I hadn't seen one in ages, I forgot they shat on it via WD.


If most enemies needed 5's to hit 4pt unbreakable troops then skeletons would be broken as hell.


Again Settra is your best friend, making everyone within 6" WS7 is nasty as hell, esp if "everyone within 6" " includes a Colossus.

Stymie Jackson
07-12-2011, 17:49
You mentioned previously that the average margin you'd lose combat with the skele's was 15 (therefore another 15 crumbling) Can you please provide a couple of examples of these combats as in normal circumstances I think the Skele's should do much better vs most troops. (not swordmasters etc etc)

Not directed at me but I'll add to this. This isn't going to apply to sticking Skaven in the naughty bits, scaring gobbos or beating down pathetic imperial core infantry. Maybe we don't need to compare to Chosen or Swordmasters, but you will run into Temple Guard, GW Dwarf Warriors and Chaos Marauders, and such near-elite units will punish skeletons.

For example I have been playing with/against Dwarfs vs TK a lot lately. Typically I'll run two GW hordes at 2500 points. This is not crazy, or rare, and remember these are core infantry enemy. So how do skeletons do against a solid, tough unit that isn't truly Elite like Hammerers or special elf units?

Note there is one thing that is often forgotten. Fear. Not every unit is within BSB range. BSBs can be killed by snipe spells or KB assassination. Dwarves won't fail very often thanks to LD9, but it does happen.

We aren't going to add a prince to the unit, just straight up infantry vs infantry. To be honest, Princes belong in TG and chariots mainly anyway.

If you run a skeleton bus (which you should) skeletons will swing first. 10 attacks won't do a whole lot to the Dawi. Typically you will average 1 kill (hit on 4+, wound on a 5+, then 2/3 chance of armor failing).

The Dawi then swing back 21 times (7 models in B2B, 3 ranks). That's hitting on 3+, wounding on 2+, and a parry save. Ends up about 10 kills.

So the Dawi win by 9. Both will have 4 ranks and a standard, so disregarding charge or other bonus, that's 18 dead skeletons in one turn.

The average margin won't be 15. It'll be about 10 against solid enemy infantry, whereas 15 is more likely with truly elite units. But losing by 10ish against a core infantry unit that isn't uncommon? In other words, expect to lose 20 skeletons per combat phase against good enemy infantry. Pretty bad in a competive environment. In my experience, 40 skeletons die in 2 combat phases. That means if they charge you, their next movement phase the unit is free to kill something else. That's not a tarpit!

So yeah, if your meta doesn't have units like this then skeletons may do good. But otherwise I think it's pretty clear the minimum size for skeletons should be at least 50 general speaking in an all comers army, if you take 'em all at. 30-40 will only be useful against cheapo enemy infantry.

GrandmasterWang
08-12-2011, 06:56
Heh, I need some Chariots before I run Big Set but yeah, definitely liking him at the new points cost. I'll need to read his rules again. If he can pump up the colossus then that's huge.

Cheers for the response Stymie. Dwarfs are my main army so it was interesting reading what you had to say. There is a huge difference between losing 20 and 30 skeletons per round, I just struggle to see where an average of 15 comes from (of course I can see it vs Chaos warriors).

Regarding your example/mathhammer. "beating down pathetic imperial core infantry." These are equivalent pts infantry though.

Back to your mathhammer, I personally think it's always worth running a Prince in a decent/big block of Skeles. I don't have enough chariots to really use yet, but of course Tomb Guard need a 'Tomb' something to guard :)

40 GW dwarfs costs 400pts. For that you can get 40 Skeletons and a bloody tough prince with pts to spare. I consider fielding a big block of skeletons without a Necro/Tomb something kinda like fielding dwarf warmachines without runes if you know what i mean. They are a strength of the army, may as well get use out of them.

Good point re: fear. When i face TK's with my dwarfs i have terrible luck all the time.... except for when it comes to passing fear tests, but if you're in enough combat rounds with skeletons you'll eventually fail. For an example of my terrible luck vs Tomb Kings. 11 Ironbreaker (hey, i like the 3+ save, only way to get in on dwarf infantry plust the models are some of my favourites.) attacks, hitting on 4's I managed to hit with a total of 4 attacks over 2 rounds...just venting. Anyway.

Back to your example. This time Bus but with a Prince (using your example, no champs)
Skeleton's strike first, this time with 9 attacks hitting on 3's. They will kill on average 1.3 dwarfs (same as 10 hitting on 4's basically). Not so good. Now with the return attacks.

Some will have to/choose to hit the prince but we'll ignore that for now. Going for optimal combat res, lets say all 21 can hit skeletons. Now they are hitting on 4's, kills on average 7.3 skeletons. Let's just say the Prince kills 1 dwarf. Makes a big difference (loss of 5 vs 10). Really, against most guys you want them to attack the prince who has toughness 5 and ideally a 4+ ward save. With 3 wounds it's unlikely he'll die in 1 round, even with 9 GW dwarfs attacking him. Say 9 GS dwarfs attack the prince they'll cause 2.25 wounds before saves, say 1 wound after. This leaves only 12 to attack skeletons. Causing 4.167 skeleton deaths after saves. As you can see with this, if the GW dwarfs devote to trying to get rid of the prince they could well actually lose the combat with a bit of luck.

Prince, 3 attacks with a hand weapon will on average kill 1.3 dwarfs a round. Not good, but he's just there to boost and be annoying. I'll need to check my book but i'm pretty sure you can get 40 skeletons w/Necro and Prince for less than the 40 GW dwarfs. With a Prince in there a horde of skeletons can actually be quite effective but we'll leave that for another time.

Finally, one other huge advantage of Skeleton infantry (bows as well) is the 'repeat' challenge. Challenge with your Skeleton champ who is cheap as poo, then raise him again and challenge again. It can be really annoying for an opponent and can do a great job at neutralising powerful characters.

"So how do skeletons do against a solid, tough unit that isn't truly Elite like Hammerers or "

Well... they'll do about as well against the hammerers as they do against the GW dwarfs ;)



I'm not saying Skeletons are great or anything but I think they are well underestimated and underated on here.

Althwen
08-12-2011, 09:54
That sums it up pretty nicely, Stymie.

Enigmatik1
08-12-2011, 13:57
That sums it up pretty nicely, Stymie.

Seconded...

It's quite commonplace in my circles to run into "near-elite" core infantry. No one takes anything else. The chaff, as y'all like to say, is left at home outside of Skaven who's garbage units are broken in the current rules environment. If it isn't T4 and/or doesn't have multiple attacks (or an extra rank via spears) it doesn't see the field. I thought I'd made that clear in my post...:p

Edit: Fear is forgotten because it's so rare that it actually comes into play. I've had 6 games under the new book and I have seen exactly ONE failed Fear test. Now granted, that Fear test did save (incidentally) my Skeleton Warrior unit from a Saurus block (I know...o.O) but one failure over 6 full 6-turn games is not something you can really plan around. ;)

Skipschnitz
09-12-2011, 03:23
It's like using decimals to show case the rarity of dice rolls. :eyebrows: Guys in my group do that too and it makes me laugh. There should be a disclaimer for that just like calling up a psychic hotline or something..."for entertainment purposes only". ;) For whatever reason, my dice don't follow the "trends". One game they will be hot as hell and roll everything that I need them to. Then in a tournament, they get stage fright and can't roll anything that I need them too. :mad: You just have to build your army to be able to stand the attrition that will inevitably be the deciding game factor. Unfortunately, it goes against an Undead Player's odds. (although currently the VC's are in a better spot than TK's)

GrandmasterWang
09-12-2011, 07:10
Unfortunately, it goes against an Undead Player's odds. (although currently the VC's are in a better spot than TK's)


Not when it comes to skeletons though ;)

Spiney Norman
09-12-2011, 08:14
Edit: Fear is forgotten because it's so rare that it actually comes into play. I've had 6 games under the new book and I have seen exactly ONE failed Fear test. Now granted, that Fear test did save (incidentally) my Skeleton Warrior unit from a Saurus block (I know...o.O) but one failure over 6 full 6-turn games is not something you can really plan around. ;)

The deathmask considerably increases the odds of failing a fear test, I'm very much enjoying my deathmask chariot King.

Echunia
09-12-2011, 08:29
The deathmask considerably increases the odds of failing a fear test, I'm very much enjoying my deathmask chariot King.

How much chariots do you run him with btw? I've been considering running him. How do you protect him? The most I managed was a 3+ and 5++ but maybe it's enough, with a spear for offence?

Enigmatik1
09-12-2011, 18:38
The deathmask considerably increases the odds of failing a fear test, I'm very much enjoying my deathmask chariot King.

No doubt. I haven't run the Mask yet...but its definitely next on my "to try" list. :-)

Stymie Jackson
09-12-2011, 19:59
I consider fielding a big block of skeletons without a Necro/Tomb something kinda like fielding dwarf warmachines without runes if you know what i mean. They are a strength of the army, may as well get use out of them.


I hear yah about toughening up the skeletons with a Prince. But I REALLY am fond of Tomb Guard. They stomp face, plain and simple, as long as they have a prince with them. I'm not big on running multiple princes, as at 100 points a pop buck naked they aren't cheap. If you DON'T run Tomb Guard or a big block of Chariots, I guess the next best thing is skeleton infantry.

50 Skeletons plus a pimped out prince (Armor of Destiny or Talisman of Protection and fire ward, 3 base wounds on a hero is awesome for ward save protection) is actually a bit less than a Dwarf Great Weapon horde. Considering that Tomb Guard+Prince is between 500 and 750 points (39 TG+SoTUL+Prince=deathstar of face beating, if you are so inclined, but runs 750) that's a much more affordable 'center' of the army.

I guess if you run a lot of constructs like Sphynx and Knights this may not be a terribad idea. The cheaper, and core nature of skeleton means more points for Homoerotic Snake Riders and death kitties.

Note: I'm biased against Death Kitties because they die just as easy to cannon as giants, and giants are cheaper, but that is my bias since I play Dwarves a lot!


I'll need to check my book but i'm pretty sure you can get 40 skeletons w/Necro and Prince for less than the 40 GW dwarfs. With a Prince in there a horde of skeletons can actually be quite effective but we'll leave that for another time.


Oh yeah cost wise you are correct, but the problem with Necrotects is they need to survive until the Skeletons swing. Against Dawi that's doable. They are just so fragile that anything with I3 usually turns them into Toilet Paper.

It's this...why spend 200+ points to buff 'crappy' infantry to mediorce? That's my view, but I'm spoiled by WS4 T4 core troops in my main army.



I'm not saying Skeletons are great or anything but I think they are well underestimated and underated on here.

You may be correct in the end. I'll say this caveat...IF you do not run a large (28+) Tomb Guard unit or (say 5-6) Chariot mob, then a Skeleton anvil may be a decent choice. It's like Shield Dwarves...they have little killing power but if you take other units to provide the killing power they can be useful.

After watching, repeated in several games, Tomb Guard chop down a GW Dwarf horde (40 models, typical) in ONE turn of combat I really just look at skeletons and say, "Why, when you can get more TG". But I do admit that is a strong bias of mine and hope people can understand a lot of my opinion here may be biased as about 75% of my TK experience is against Dwarves. Skeletons certainly do better against Empire (except Greatswords), skaven, goblins and core elves (especially when you consider the points per kills). WS5 skeletons actually beat a lot of these T3 enemies in combat.

Thanks for a great response!

Spiney Norman
09-12-2011, 23:31
How much chariots do you run him with btw? I've been considering running him. How do you protect him? The most I managed was a 3+ and 5++ but maybe it's enough, with a spear for offence?

It depends on the game size, at 2000-2500 I accompany him with 5 chariots, at 3000 I up that to 7, always with a standard and banner of swiftness, you'd be amazed how much +1M adds to a unit of chariots.

My most common build is
Tomb King: Chariot, spear, shield, Armour of Fortune, Dragon Bane Gem, Deathmask

I've also experimented switching the spear/shield out for a flail or GW, but prefer the spear as Str 6 is enough to deal with most things. IMHO giving the deathmask to a foot King is a waste of time, the chariot lets him get into the enemy's face much quicker and fielding it in an infantry unit allows your opponent to choose his battles and pit your King against units which minimise its effectiveness (for example his own general's unit).

Makaber
09-12-2011, 23:39
This is pretty funny, because when the book was released, everybody was all "why would anyone bother taking Tomb Guard, when Skeleton Warriors are so cheap?". I mainained that Warriors might be cheap, but they don't actually do much. It's nice to see I was sorta right. I'll notch this down as a victory in my book of personal victories that nobody cares much about.