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View Full Version : starting a new force, know what style but not what faction



Camman1984
11-04-2014, 10:49
I currently play space marines and while i love them i find them very predictable and samey to use. I am slowly building an eldar force as a painting project which wont be on the table for ages so i wanted to start a force that i would paint to a lower standard and get playing faster.

The style i want (in no particular order) is -

1) Reasonably mobile, not interested in a purely static gunline
2) interesting tricks and adaptable tactics so the enemy is kept guessing
3) primarily ranged prowess with either durability or balls out firepower to win a firefight.
4) synergy between units to improve power but not units that are useless unless half the army support them.
5) playable at low points levels (500) to get to the table asap.

My favourites are, in order of preference

Necrons
Tau
Dark eldar

Any suggestions for these or different factions? Regarding unit choices and favourite quirks?

Not-not-kenny
11-04-2014, 13:07
Sounds like you want to play Tau to me. They can be made more mobile than many think and do have some tricks up their sleeve other than 'moar riptides'. I think you are already aware of the absurd short to medium range firepower they can bring to the fight. The main 'synergy unit' would of course be the pathfinders, probably the most reliable way to get markerlights from. At small point levels I like using stealth suits and special weapon pathfinders instead of crisis suits.

Princey
11-04-2014, 14:13
yep, +1 to the above, tau are certainly what your looking at from your descripton, try a suit army, or my favourite which is the airbourne cavalry setup (lots of firewarriors and fishies) tau really are a bit pants in combat, but if firepower is what you want then they have it in spades. Necrons can be made reasonably mobile and are certainly very shooty/tough but generally slower than tau. Dark eldar....well....LOTS of firepower or really good combat combined with ridiculous speed....downside ---about as tough as a wet paper bag certainly interesting to play and without a doubt in my mind the single best overall range of miniatures gw produce. they are a difficult army to master however, games tend to be utter slaughters for one side (not necessarily you) as your already doing an eldar army, id recommend one of the other two for something different.

Camman1984
11-04-2014, 22:16
Are tau really all that mobile, everything about the dex that i have read so far like supporting fire etc seems to revolve around castling up and sticking together. The dark eldar were just an idea as they have interesting tricks etc, but tau and necrons look much more competitive as an army.

I have heard that crons can be very mobile with their croissants and veils.

jimfolks
11-04-2014, 23:06
I would suggest Dark Eldar. The points cost for their vehicles are low. You can get them with troops. You can go 2 venoms with 3 trueborn (splinter cannons) and 1 Raider with 5 kabalites and another set of Kab walking with a dark lace and an archon for close to 500 points. Thats 40 poison shots if you move 6 inches or 48 poison shots if you move 12 (but 24 of those only hit on 6s) Plus 2 dark lance shots and another 9 kabs still to shoot. Not bad for 500 points at all.

Marshal
12-04-2014, 01:54
I second dark eldar. They are as far from a static gunline as you can get, keep the tactics interesting with every game being different, and have the firepower to boot with their standard armament on their vehicles being the dark lance as well as splinter cannons on their venoms. High toughness? Just about every weapon is a poison weapon. Lots of vehicles? Haywires and dark lances. Loads of infantry? Sheer volume of fire with splinter cannon venoms. They are one of the fastest armies in the game, with loads of cheap troops and cheap vehicles. I personally love Reaver jetbikes (though they're expensive to buy) but it annoys the crap out of everyone with their bladevane attacks and can tote heavy weaponry as well with either blasters or heat lances.

Camman1984
12-04-2014, 11:55
As cool as dark eldar are i think i might not go for them as i am already building an eldar list. Have written a couple of tau and cron lists and am currently favouring crons.

wanderingblade
13-04-2014, 01:58
Debatably having an Eldar list - which would have been ideal for this style - is a good reason to go Dark Eldar; the two ally well if you're into that. Mindyou, I suppose that Tau can ally with the Craftworlders as well.

That said - I don't feel like there's a huge amount of synergy in the Dark Eldar list.

Aryllon
13-04-2014, 09:35
All valid points, but they miss the point. Choose Necrons or just stick to Eldar.


All three option can play the way you want but if the point is to have something painted quickly while you work on the force you really want (and who also play this way very well), then Necron are the obvious interim.


Tau and especially DE are paint-intensive, if you choose either of them you might as well stick with Eldar in the first place as you're not getting to the table any faster.

Asdrubael108
13-04-2014, 10:55
Maybe the legions? It sounds like a nice HH army!

Frogstomp
13-04-2014, 11:14
For fast easy painting Tau or Necrons.... Try an allie detachment for your marheens or something for the eldar your workin on... just my thoughts

Sanai
13-04-2014, 11:42
Are tau really all that mobile, everything about the dex that i have read so far like supporting fire etc seems to revolve around castling up and sticking together.

Castling up and sticking together? Are you sure you didn't accidentally read the guard dex?

The tau are an army where everyone either has a jump-pack or access to a skimmer, and the majority of their weapons are most effective in medium ranges.

People who turtle up with Tau are wasting a lot of the armies tactical potential. Sure, some units are suited for sitting back (Broadsides) but the rest is very effective at hit & run or mid to close range firefights.

Also, tau can be pretty easy to paint- I have seen one army that is pretty well painted using only a couple of colours. Its just that Tau are an army that lends itself more towards highlights than washes.

BigHammer
13-04-2014, 17:05
I currently play space marines and while i love them i find them very predictable and samey to use. I am slowly building an eldar force as a painting project which wont be on the table for ages so i wanted to start a force that i would paint to a lower standard and get playing faster.

The style i want (in no particular order) is -

1) Reasonably mobile, not interested in a purely static gunline

Of the three you mention:
-Dark Eldar are mobility embodied. No other 40k force, save Craftworld Eldar, is as mobile as Dark Eldar are. Being able to both shoot and assault from all of their cheap, deadly transports makes them the premier maneuvre warfare force.
-Tau are surprisingly mobile. While their infantry have to rely on Devilfish (not a bad thing) to stay mobile, their abundance of jetpack infantry (more than any other force in 40k by far) means run and gun tactics suit them to the core. If you want to avoid infantry altogether, try a Farsight Enclaves list, who can take Crisis suits as troops.
-Necrons have some odd means of getting about the table; their transports are reliable and deadly, and they feature a lot of skimmers that pour out firepower. They also have access to flyers as dedicated transports, teleportation devices aplenty, deep strikers and jetbikes (albeit regular, not Eldar variety). Add on scarab swarms and they're actually pretty quick at getting across the board.


2) interesting tricks and adaptable tactics so the enemy is kept guessing

- Dark Eldar have access to a few tricks. Poisoned weapons and Lances are their main schticks, meaning no creature is too tough and no tank too heavily armoured for even the average all-comers Dark Eldar list. Haywire grenades on troops (Wyches) enhance their tank-killing power, while the Haemonculi have access to a lot of individual trinkets that help them deal with specific targets rather nastily. Their units are relatively specialised, though, so while they can certainly fight any force, each individual unit will always have weaknesses. No amount of poison weapons can scratch a rhino...
- Tau are a strange beast when it comes to tricks and adaptability. You can run a Tau list that is nothing but big guns and markerlights that just blow everything away, or you can take a mix of synergetic units that work together in lots of little ways to keep your opponent guessing; mechanised Tau lists with some crisis suit/riptide backup, accompanied by some Kroot skirmishers and a healthy serving of AA are one of the most versatile armies I've ever fielded.
- Necrons have a plethora of tricks up their sleeve. Reanimation protocalls are the obvious one, while their signature gauss weaponry is effective against infantry and vehicles both, meaning they're never really caught off guard by your opponent's list choice. Super-weapons like the Death Ray, etc, also ensure you can answer whatever threat your opponent comes at you with with a larger one of your own, while Mind-Shackle-Scarabs can really throw your opponent for six when his warlord starts beating himself around the head with his thunder hammer.


3) primarily ranged prowess with either durability or balls out firepower to win a firefight.

- Dark Eldar do a lot of their killing at range, using their mobility to stay out of harms' way for the most part. They lack really large numbers, and are very fragile, though, so certainly can't rely on overpowering their enemy in the way you describe here. They do have considerable capability in combat, to make up for this, though.

- Tau do one thing well, and that is shoot. Their infantry have decent armour saves or fieldcraft, defensive grenades are liberally available, and they have access to a lot of multi-wound heavy infantry too, in the form of battlesuits. Everything has a lot of guns, and they're all good guns, to boot. Add markerlights into the mix, and few races in 40k can hope to outshoot Tau. In a straight-up firefight, Fire Warriors are one of the best troops choices in the game, point for point.

- Necrons are a bit like Tau, in that they are both shooty and resilient. They lean more toward the resilient side of things, thanks to higher toughness and reanimation, but their shooting is pretty impressive too. They have access to tough vehicles with big guns, and large infantry units with weight of firepower.


4) synergy between units to improve power but not units that are useless unless half the army support them.

- Synergy is an odd thing to Dark Eldar. Their units are inherently greedy, as stacking more pain tokens on fewer units gives greater rewards for them, but most of their lists revolve around using MSU tactics to maximise firepower and minimise erosion. Their units are specialised, mostly, though, so will need support on occasion from other units, but that's really the extent of their synergy. Their real synergy comes in close combat, but that's not what you seem to want from your force, so it's not really worth mentioning.
- There is no force that relies on synergy between units than Tau, and none that rewards clever use of supporting units more than them. You learn a whole new way to play with a Tau army, where how far apart your units are, their corridors of fire, distance to the enemy, order of firing and which unit gets to use your markerlight tokens are all key to success. Playing them in this manner is tricky to master, but for me at least has been one of the most rewarding facets of 6th ed 40k and Tau. Look to Supporting Fire, Markerlights, Defensive Grenades, Drones and Pinning to make the most of them.
- Necron units have some odd synergetic play. They have the Court to support their infantry with their odd devices, and the Triarch Stalker to expose units to devastating firepower from the rest of your army, and the Monolith's teleportation device can change the shape of the battlefield very quickly. However, they do tend to operate as mostly separate units for the most part.


5) playable at low points levels (500) to get to the table asap.

- Dark Eldar have a lot of small, cheap units available in nearly all of their FOC slots. A small Dark Eldar army loses little; it remains mobile, since transports are dirt cheap, and can still deal with all comers thanks to the abundance of poison and lance weapons. They even have cheap, effective HQ choices; my personal favourite for small games is the Succubus, who is a monstrous WS8, I8 with A4, for very, very little points.
- Tau work decently at small points values; Fire warriors and Kroot are both cheap and effective, while small units of crisis suits give you access to specialised weapons on mobile, survivable platforms while remaining affordable. A crisis commander can be made without breaking the bank, but they have access to some other, budget HQ choices too; Ethereals and Cadre Fireblades are the obvious ones to mention here, and both do excellent work supporting your infantry forces. They do lose access to some of their larger toys; squeezing a Riptide or a Broadside unit into your army in small games will leave little room for anything else, and will certainly make your games less fun.
- Necrons work in small points simply due to the versatility in their troops; warriors can deal with both infantry and vehicles, and are fairly cheap and survivable, so you can throw a few units out there and not have to worry too much about what you'll come up against. Their HQ choices might gouge you a little at low points value games, but you can still fit a big gun or two in there without too much bother.

So that's as objective as I can be for you, to help you choose. In my opinion, Tau will be the most rewarding for you. Get some Fire Warriors, a unit of pathfinders, and some crisis suits and build from there. The Battleforce box for them is actually pretty excellent, just throw in a Crisis commander and you've got an effective force straight out of the box.

Camman1984
13-04-2014, 18:14
Thanks for the breakdown. Tau and necrons both look really fun and rewarding and tau would fit in with my eldar while the armies are small. Only problem with tau is they are more complicated to paint and crisis suits are really showing their age and need an update.

BigHammer
13-04-2014, 18:37
I don't find Tau particularly complicated to paint, but compared to Necrons you're technically correct ;)