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EvanM
10-06-2014, 06:50
if you dont know what empire infantry is like, dont comment.
most tourny empire lists are literally all cavalry or just run a few infantry archer units as chaff.

it is true that halberdiers are decent, being one of the cheapest infantry to get S4 (because of halberd) but the other infantry is dwarfed in usefullness by them.

swordsmen are decent but not worth 1 more pt than halberds.

spearmen die by the truckload, like halberdiers, but without the invaluable S4.

greatswords are NOT elite infantry, they just happen to get Stubborn, but die very very quickly for costing exactly as much as a spearmen and a halberdier together. Unlike other elites, they lack high I, WS, s4 base, 2A, or ASF of high elves, Immune to Psych, or any other special rule that may make them seem more elite.

40 GS = 40 Spears and 40 halberds. What would you choose?

militia are garbage because of no armor, too many pts and 2 hand weapons is lame when youre ws3 and s3.

archers are good, but
handgunners and crossbowmen have limited uses and cost too much compared to other armies ranged units.

flagellants................ yeah. just sad.

so its no wonder people take ICK in huge blocks or demigryph units that can actually kill things.

thoughts?

dalezzz
10-06-2014, 07:48
Yeah they are a bit rubbish , I do use 40 spearmen and 50 halberdiers quite often ..... Mostly cos I painted them though, I don't think I'd touch swordsmen anymore , spears do their job cheaper to my mind ( hitting on 3s sometimes isn't worth the cost nor is the parry) I see them as a defensive unit mostly.

Now I love greatswords ... The models though , I have several different units , they don't see a lot of of action though as they are too expensive. Flagelants .. Only got about 15 painted so the odd time I've used them has been purely as a holding unit ... They have been ok , probably cost too much for what they did though

shooting units are just terrible , BS 3 doesn't hit anything , usually take 10 xbows though , but I face a lot of fanatics and the like

yabbadabba
10-06-2014, 07:49
I think it has been well established on here that Empire are a synergistic army.

if you dont know what empire infantry is like, dont comment. Sorry that isn't going to work. Still, to ease your worries, I have been an Empire player for almost 20 years now.

most tourny empire lists are literally all cavalry or just run a few infantry archer units as chaff. There is more to GW games than tournaments. You tend to find that tournament army lists are different to other styles.

it is true that halberdiers are decent, being one of the cheapest infantry to get S4 (because of halberd) but the other infantry is dwarfed in usefullness by them. That S4 is all that makes them "decent"

swordsmen are decent but not worth 1 more pt than halberds. They are WS4, +1 AS and a Parry save. All that for 1 pt? It all comes down to what you are using them for.

spearmen die by the truckload, like halberdiers, but without the invaluable S4. All Empire infantry die by the truckloads. However I have had a lot of success using Spearmen as a defensive lure, lead by a Captain and buffed with, say, Wyssan's Wildform. Now taking this unit alters my playing style, but it is a viable option especially with lower I armies.

greatswords are NOT elite infantry, they just happen to get Stubborn, but die very very quickly for costing exactly as much as a spearmen and a halberdier together. Unlike other elites, they lack high I, WS, s4 base, 2A, or ASF of high elves, Immune to Psych, or any other special rule that may make them seem more elite. Greatswords are elite, but definitely needed a buff, even with a further points increase. When you compare them with their more closely aligned opposites, the Black Orcs, Greatswords suffer immensely for being underpowered. Still that Stubborn is something to value in an army where if you want good leadership you need steadfast and/or the LD bubble, more so if you are within range of the BSB.

militia are garbage because of no armor, too many pts and 2 hand weapons is lame when youre ws3 and s3. I'd never put Militia up in a face to face fight, they melt like marshmellows in a roaring fire. They have other uses, including flank attacks. They also get quite mean if you want to add the ubiquitous Warrior Priest to them in a horde unit. I mostly use them for taking out other small units, like fast cavalry, flanking, war machines, teasing fanatics etc. Its amazing how often people ignore a little unit of militia running around.

archers are good, but handgunners and crossbowmen have limited uses and cost too much compared to other armies ranged units. Archers are less effective than the other two, they are mostly used for a purpose they were not designed for.

flagellants................ yeah. just sad. I dont ofetn take flagellants but when I do it is for that Unbreakable factor. They can tie up and entire wing for a few turns if positioned correctly and lesser infantry or smaller cavalry blocks can come off smarting in the first round of combat.

so its no wonder people take ICK in huge blocks or demigryph units that can actually kill things. As I said, its about the environment in terms of your criticisms, not the list. Warrior Priests, Life and Beasts wizards, even captains, all can help turn those piddly little men into real winners on the battlefield, but it takes a skilled general to do it in a tournament environment. That is probably more why people don't take them, ICK and Demigryphs are more forgiving.

Greyshadow
10-06-2014, 09:26
I think it has been well established on here that Empire are a synergistic army.

I am learning the Empire at the moment and I am certainly getting this impression. Was thinking about adding a Hurricanum to get some buffs out to boost my troops.

dalezzz
10-06-2014, 10:52
The problem I have with this is the cost and survivability of that "synergy" on top of the unit cost , very unit needs a WP right ? So that's over 50 points straightaway , more if you actually want him to survive , wich is essential against any army with higher initiative or you won't even get your hatred, so more like 100 points? Can save a bit by going for just heavy armour and shield I suppose 75ish.
So then we also need a hurricanum? Over a 100 points again and it can realistically effect 2 units ( + detachments) at best , course you have to hold a fairly static line , or hope your opponent does, to make it go that far

+1 to hit and hatred isn't too shabby, I think statistically it's the same as hitting on 3s with a reroll but it's very easily removed by killing the priest . The wagons obviously harder to shift as it's probably behind your lines but as soon as you have to move to deal with a threat it's use is halved

so 200 ish points per unit or 280 ish, for 2 ( more likely choice) I think there's some general costing issues all through the empire book ( under and over) and it's pretty easy to spot too , and I think a lot of the infantry empire players have picked up new army's since it came out ( cav lads are very happy :) )

tldr . I think we pay a synergy tax on buffs that might be brought and I think we pay it again on the things that give those buffs

Ultimate Life Form
10-06-2014, 10:58
As rarely as it happens, but I have to agree with Yabba. I'm not an Empire Player but I had the "pleasure" of going against infantry-heavy Empire numerous times so this may qualify as "knowing what Empire Infantry is like". Are they game-breakingly powerful? No. If you want that WoC are that way ->.

Still it baffles me how anyone can describe Flagellants as useless, and Greatswords as chaff. I dread thesde units every time I see them on the table. Of course, you have to know how to use them, too. If you use militia to take Chaos Warriors or Savage Orcs head on then, well, the result is not really a surprise.

And I also like how in 7th everyone was like "you MUST take Swordsmen, there is no other viable option, it's the only thing one would ever consider, everything else is completely useless, the designers are so stupid" and now it is exactly the same, only with Halberdiers, apparently.

Plompkin
10-06-2014, 11:18
Greatswords, in my opinion, got slightly worse compared to spearmen and swordsmen with the FAQ that allows detachments to use the parent rank bonus for determining steadfast. That, combined with Cannons and Demis in the special slot, makes taking a huge unit less comfortable for many people. I definitely think they need proper use of detachments and army composition/strategy to pull off, but when done so they are one of the scarier units on the table.

As for Halberdiers, they're okay, but I never like using the mentality of being good with magic as a justification. Swords at 7 may seem too expensive (6 was fine ffs), but I can rely on them against a crap magic phase. I'll generally pay that premium for the comfort.

Banville
10-06-2014, 11:35
Yabba is spot on, in every respect. I've been playing 40k and Fantasy since 2nd and 5th respectively but have only taken up Empire in the last 6 months and I'm loving every minute of playing with the puffy-sleeved, hammer-loving Germans. It's precisely the synergy that appeals to me.

To the OP, analysing most units, in most armies, in a vacuum is a recipe for skewed conclusions. You have to take into account battlefield role, buffs, the rest of the army, rock/scissors match-ups and the fickle whims of the dice Gods. Never judge a unit or army on its tournament reputation. That way lies madness.

dalezzz
10-06-2014, 12:11
And I also like how in 7th everyone was like "you MUST take Swordsmen, there is no other viable option, it's the only thing one would ever consider, everything else is completely useless, the designers are so stupid" and now it is exactly the same, only with Halberdiers, apparently.

True there's not a lot between the various statetroops , but it's such an obvious choice , unless your sole purpose is for the unit to last as long as possible 50 halberdiers are better than 60 spears , even then I'm a bit dubious as the halberdiers extra killiness means that they will be taking fewer attacks back ( also they kill more things :p ) swordsmen are a bit more complex as they are a bit more survivable ( most notably against WS4 troops) but halberdiers outkill them against most things and spearmen probably do too against everything not WS 3.
not a massive amount in it but it's just very obvious wich is best so why not take them? Personally I think giving spears free shields and making luminarks and warrior priests buffs stack with parry would even things up nicely

HelloKitty
10-06-2014, 13:25
the Yabba-Creature speaks truth.

The empire troops must work together, not be able to go off unsupported (which this one seems to find a common trait amongst players is the desire for units that do not need supported)

Wesser
10-06-2014, 14:03
It is pretty simple.

Of all Empire units only Flagellants and Steam Tanks are able to fight unsupported.

Demigryphs are a support unit as it will only be able to get a finite number of attacks and while knights are good tarpits.. byt themselves they likely won't cause enough damage to kill off units.

Flaggies are magnificent against INI2 armies with little shooting, but bad in other cases.

The rest of the Empire army relies on some sort of combination of Hurricanums, WP Hatred, magic buffs and bonuses from other characters to make an impact whether in CC or shooting. The daft thing is that Empire infantry probably is overcosted even when you factor in army book access to these kinds of buffs, but on the flip side the characters and other buffers are somewhat undercosted. It averages out, but in the meantime the book pretty much compels you to take the crutches to make Empire function...(Helblasters is just the best example of how badly Empire was Cruddified).

The things to say about Empire infantry is:

1. If your opponent is smart and plays "Whack the Crutches", aka killing WP's and such off before fights then yea.. that's a problem that means you'll have to invest in means of protecting said assets.

2. Empire infantry have a lot matchups (most notoriously Elves) where they will be brutalized almost no matter what you do. However you buff your troops then stuff like Witch Elves and Phoenix Guard for instance will absolutely murder your units. Such units are for your knights, while units such as White Lions and other GW troops that your knights don't like are what your halberdiers should be after.

thesoundofmusica
10-06-2014, 15:30
Much like Yabba (lol) says environment has much to do with it. OP is assuming a tournament scene and an all-comers list. This is not how everyone plays Warhammer.

Every time I see someone reviewing an army book and go "unit X sucks and will never see play for another 3 years" I just know these guys play all-comers lists tournament style. With list tailoring suddenly alot more units become viable or at least semi-viable. And this is what the tournament guys forget, the game isnt catering solely to them (or at all, some would say).

EvanM
10-06-2014, 17:20
i dont play tournaments, but I know that when you put competition into a game, you see the optimal efficiency level of investment come out.

its well established that without characters and buff spells, buff wagons etc empire infantry suck.
I dont want them to be chaos warriors, I just want a few more men on the field!
6pt swordsmen wouldnt just wreck the game would it?

5pts for spearmen with free shields?? why not?

greatswords for either 9 pts or get S4 would make them scarier but just listen to the empire players, we know that we cant field these guys right now EXCEPT one instance:

you play 40 GS with 2 detachments of 20 halberds to pass on the stubborn to them, but thats IT.

I think warrior priests are priced correctly, however Genera is too many pts (compared to arch lector).
Pistoliers should be core (look at every other army with fast cav)

lets just make the wagons cost 40 pts more and give me 1 pt less per man, that way since i dont use wagons, it can balance out (as opposed to HAVING to use one).


you guys are talking about the usefullness of empire infantry, and I agree with everything you have said. they are useful, they are just overcosted even when you factor in the "likely" amount of help that they can get from a myriad of different sources because that help still costs in pts. It takes a very clever general to win with empire, its very rewarding but if you cant do it, then its very frustrating.
empire infantry would still be more expensive than goblins.. slaves.. clanrats but just not as expensive as stormvermin (+1WS +1AS +1M +1I from halberds) or orcs (+1T).

I think if we say tiny changes to those 3 units youd see more empire infantry in the game.

HelloKitty
10-06-2014, 17:29
It has never done this before but it thinks that offhand the above suggestions would need playtested quite a bit. It sees 9 pt greatswords as being deployed x50 or x60 to take advantage of the then cheaper stubborn rule with larger stubborn detachments to create a fairly large and cheap immovable object. (it exaggerates of course stubborn does not mean unbreakable, it will iron its mouth in penance for this slip)

it doesn't like pistoliers as core - that indicates that the majority of an empire army could be pistoliers and it doesn't think the narrative indicates this is true.

Would it wreck the game? It cannot say one way or the other but it thinks this would need playtested quite a bit first before rationally considering it.

olderplayer
10-06-2014, 19:02
Having played part of a competitive GT with a large block of halberdiers and two smaller militia detachments recently, I was quite surprised at how well they did against some really tought armies (VC, High Elves, WoC top lists). The army ended up 2-2-1 but with the abilty to win some scenario objectives, keep one loss a mior loss, a fluffy themed list and a very high paint score the army ended up doing really well overall (17 out of 85 or something like that). The key was keeping a stubborn character at home and using steam tanks and artillery in place to threaten and cut stuff down. Similarly, I have often played against empire armies built around infantry that did quite well at a GT event the last few year. The key, as others noted, is synergy. I think GW deliberately overcosted empire infantry a bit due to the presence of hatred with war priests, the detachment system, and the bubble effects of the buff wagons.

That being said, halberdiers are almost always the base core unit in an infantry-based empire army. The inability or unwillingness of GW to use fraction point costs limited the ability to point cost the individual infantry units against each other corrrectly. As a result, as some noted, the point cost of a swordsman is too high (GW overvalued the parry save and shield AS), spearmen are too expensive, and militia are often too expensive (unless used correctly as chaff detachments). Archers and handgunners are also a bit too expensive.

Greatswords are actually not that great but if you conga line them and use the arch lector bound spells or a war priest in the unit, they can be quite effective holding something up.

GW totally screwed up flaggelants. They messed up their rules for martyrdom and then unnecessarily raised their point costs, ignoring the fact that they die in droves in combat. As a result, I almost never seen a competitive Empire army at a GT with flaggies anymore. (same issue with mortars, too good before so they nerfed their rules and raised their point cost to the point that one rarely sees them in competitive play).

Part of the real issue is that Empire cav is so much better in some situations for filling out core and special slots. Hatred combos well with the ability to get the charge off. Demigryphs are one of the under-costed/OP units in the game and the 1+ AS of cav plus the ability to run characters with 1+ AS in barded cav core units makes cav the preferred part of the army from a points efficiency stand point. The problem with Empire cav armies, as I've found, is the smaller model count (vulnerable to spells that do not allow an armour save) limits the ability to break steadfast, low S when not on the charge (unless one sacrifices an armour save and accepts ASL for a great weapon), and reliance on mobility means that the HBVG and cannons are left more vulnerable. Thus, the toughest empire armies for me have been ones with a decent halberd core with detachments, HBVGs and cannons with engineers, and some combo of Demigryph knights and steam tanks.

yabbadabba
10-06-2014, 19:40
The problem I have with this is the cost and survivability of that "synergy" on top of the unit cost , very unit needs a WP right ? So that's over 50 points straightaway , more if you actually want him to survive , wich is essential against any army with higher initiative or you won't even get your hatred, so more like 100 points? Can save a bit by going for just heavy armour and shield I suppose 75ish. No, that's just net-speak - WP are fantastic for the points but are best used in offensive units. Also, if you want to get the best out of your character allowance you tend towards semi-naked WP to keep the points down.

So then we also need a hurricanum? Over a 100 points again and it can realistically effect 2 units ( + detachments) at best , course you have to hold a fairly static line , or hope your opponent does, to make it go that far This is kind of a misunderstanding I think. If you just use the Hurricanum or Luminark for their unit buff, it is a massive waste of points. I have got the best out of them as the link between two hammer units - Halberdiers and Knights, preferably KofIC. Not only do you get the buff, but you also get the support attacks from the chariot in one of the combats. And the spells, while easy to dispel, are highly annoying especially if cast towards the end of a successful magic phase. Just to take one of these two for the sake of buffs is a waste of points, you'd get more with the extra troops or a wizard.

So it really comes down to how you view items within the army working together. If you have a defensive core unit, like spears or swordsmen, you might be better with a Captain and some detachments rather than a WP and Luminark, acting as an anvil and allowing the latter to support the hammer.

yabbadabba
10-06-2014, 20:01
I think if we say tiny changes to those 3 units youd see more empire infantry in the game. And I think you would see less of other things. The Empire army is, for me, quite nicely challenging in the army list pahse. There is so many options and combinations you can take to make an effective army in most games outside of highly competitive ones. So lets look at your suggestions then:

6pt swordsmen wouldnt just wreck the game would it?
5pts for spearmen with free shields?? why not? I don't have a problem with either of these, as it actually doesn't solve anything. It doesn't make them better, you just get more of them, which only delays when your steadfast stops working by a turn, possibly two.

greatswords for either 9 pts or get S4 would make them scarier but just listen to the empire players, we know that we cant field these guys right now EXCEPT one instance:
you play 40 GS with 2 detachments of 20 halberds to pass on the stubborn to them, but thats IT. As I never use my GS in this fashion, I disagree with your premiss for this change. However GS are definitely either overpriced or underpowered. There are several answers, of which s4 doesn't really answer, but maybe +1A would be too much. ItP could be quite nice. Another is to allow GS to stay at S3 but no longer be ASL, but just strike in initiative order.

I think warrior priests are priced correctly, however Genera is too many pts (compared to arch lector). Most armies have issues where they have a LvL 4 wizard vs a combat lord. Combat Lords need to bring something else to the party, and I am still assessing if the Dwarves do this or not.

Pistoliers should be core (look at every other army with fast cav) Hmm, not really as both the Special and Core sections are rammed as they are. Here is a radical thought - KotIC and Reiksguard can have Pistolliers as Detachments, with all the normal detachment rules?

EvanM
11-06-2014, 00:30
pistoliers as detachments............. OOOOH! i like that idea! stand and shoot! :D

pistoliers and outriders could be given heavy armor (why not?)

YES GW overcosted empire on purpose because of a lot of reasons, but the non fractional overcost is whats wrong here and swordsmen are probably worth someting like 6.33 pts but they rounded up and same with spearmen. Now that you get horde, getting an extra rank isnt good enough unless spears get some bonus special rule like "shiltrom" formation or phalanx formation that could make them interestingly different.

GrandmasterWang
12-06-2014, 07:21
Spearmen at 4 points are too good. 5 points is fine for them.

I have seen the destroy units (shadow wizards, mind razor empire build) however that was with rerolls and an op spell on them.

Regarding Flaggies.... they are the most powerful infantry beat stick the Empire have. Their role has changed from unbreakable core considerably.

Regarding Greatswords... I think ITP would make sense and go hand in hand with stubborn. That is the only of the proposed changes that makes sense. Armor buff and striking at initiative dont make background sense imo and a point drop makes them too cheap for special.

Overall the Empire book is solid although it has internal issues I like the options it provides.

Demigryphs are op no question at t4 but it is what it is....

For the most I find Empire a fun army to play and face.



Sent from my GT-I9505 using Tapatalk

EvanM
12-06-2014, 20:03
5 pt spearmen with shield for free is NOT over powered. look at clanrats.

6 pt halberds with shield for free is probably a good trade, shield only works for ranged anyway (so not worth 1 pt)

6 pt swordsmen would be about right.

Petey
12-06-2014, 21:54
pistoliers as detachments............. OOOOH! i like that idea! stand and shoot! :D

pistoliers and outriders could be given heavy armor (why not?)

YES GW overcosted empire on purpose because of a lot of reasons, but the non fractional overcost is whats wrong here and swordsmen are probably worth someting like 6.33 pts but they rounded up and same with spearmen. Now that you get horde, getting an extra rank isnt good enough unless spears get some bonus special rule like "shiltrom" formation or phalanx formation that could make them interestingly different.

Why not? Because that amount of armor makes them not fast cab anymore. It's part of the simulation.

EvanM, you've started this thread by whining about your empire, but I play against empire regularly and don't find them weak at all. Maybe, instead of asking for your army to get buffs or asking for 8th to be modified to make your guys stronger, you should start experimenting with how to use your list. Seriously, it's insulting for you to say we have no idea about your infantry because we don't play them. That means that either a) we're too dumb to figure out another army book by reading it or b) we're too dumb to figure out another army book by fighting it. Neither is the case, Yabba's points are all spot on

The only place I feel that your points are valid are on the Flaggellents and the free companies.

Petey
12-06-2014, 21:58
5 pt spearmen with shield for free is NOT over powered. look at clanrats.

6 pt halberds with shield for free is probably a good trade, shield only works for ranged anyway (so not worth 1 pt)

6 pt swordsmen would be about right.

The base cost for a human model is 3 points, it has been since 6th ed. plus 1pt for WS+I, plus 1pt for light armor, 1pt for shields, and finally 1pt for detachments and synergy.
It is reasonably costed. You're ignoring a lot when you compare it to the shaven

EvanM
13-06-2014, 02:17
doesnt matter, itll be 1 less point next ed anyway because thats what they do, they constantly go back and forth between 6 and 7 pts.

Lord Dan
13-06-2014, 02:26
+1 to hit and hatred isn't too shabby, I think statistically it's the same as hitting on 3s with a reroll

It is.

Given that most of the time, they'll be hitting on 3's with a re-roll. ;)

Ramius4
13-06-2014, 02:38
It is.

Given that most of the time, they'll be hitting on 3's with a re-roll. ;)

ba-dum-tish! :p

Lord Solar Plexus
13-06-2014, 05:54
Why not? Because that amount of armor makes them not fast cab anymore. It's part of the simulation.


How much armour FC can wear differs between books I believe. There's no fixed rule that armour removes this status - my WoC L4 can have 1+ re-rollable and still be FC. Just saying.

It's not the Empire that is weak, it is almost all of the infantry. Even that is not a problem as such; Slaves and Goblins are weak too yet still taken. The infantry is almost universally seen as overcosted by 1 point. In the same vein, people would prefer to have something else instead. There are exceptions to this rule and it's quite possible to play with a brick or two or a Griffon but the point that they're overpriced still remains.

The formula you claim is the basis is wrong on so many levels. I mean sure it could exist but light armour is not worth a point. That may be the price assigned to it but its not worth it, under no circumstances. Detachments already cost points to buy - using the rule and your formula would mean you're paying 2 points for it if you use them and 1 if you don't. What kind of game design is that? Perhaps Swordsmen should cost another point if they don't use Halberds? The same goes for synergy. Are other factions' units costed higher because they could synergize with magic or characters? No. In fact, they're often cheaper even if a synergistic aspect is innate (such as hatred for example).

A Warrior Priest or a wagon already cost points. Missile detachments do not provide any synergy but are a burden. Crossbows don't benefit from +1 to hit, yet Demis and ICK do - why are the former 1 point more and the latter seemingly not?

Point costs have always been a somewhat contentious issue, and it's hard to believe that GW follows a strict formula as long as they do arbitrary stuff like raising and lowering it for no apparent reason. After all, detachments have been around before the increase and they were better.

At the end of the day, some units are simply not taken, or not very often, and that's a sign of internal imbalance.

EvanM
13-06-2014, 06:12
I HATE when people patronize empire for their state troops. Fine, keep em a lot of points if captain (similar to skaven cheiftain) is 45 pts base (without FP armor) AND warrior priests start at 55 pts and generals start at 70 pts (basically as good as noble from HE but no ASF and +1 W).

GW absolutely does not have a comp formula for things, they just go with what "feels right" and call it a day, leaving us to either play for fun or be disappointed with the comp version of the game.

dalezzz
13-06-2014, 07:11
It is.

Given that most of the time, they'll be hitting on 3's with a re-roll. ;)

shh i was rambling! :p about as good as ASF then , you don't get the going first advantage but slaughter goblins , bargain at 195 points :shifty:

Petey
13-06-2014, 15:03
How much armour FC can wear differs between books I believe. There's no fixed rule that armour removes this status - my WoC L4 can have 1+ re-rollable and still be FC. Just saying.

It's not the Empire that is weak, it is almost all of the infantry. Even that is not a problem as such; Slaves and Goblins are weak too yet still taken. The infantry is almost universally seen as overcosted by 1 point. In the same vein, people would prefer to have something else instead. There are exceptions to this rule and it's quite possible to play with a brick or two or a Griffon but the point that they're overpriced still remains.

The formula you claim is the basis is wrong on so many levels. I mean sure it could exist but light armour is not worth a point. That may be the price assigned to it but its not worth it, under no circumstances. Detachments already cost points to buy - using the rule and your formula would mean you're paying 2 points for it if you use them and 1 if you don't. What kind of game design is that? Perhaps Swordsmen should cost another point if they don't use Halberds? The same goes for synergy. Are other factions' units costed higher because they could synergize with magic or characters? No. In fact, they're often cheaper even if a synergistic aspect is innate (such as hatred for example).

A Warrior Priest or a wagon already cost points. Missile detachments do not provide any synergy but are a burden. Crossbows don't benefit from +1 to hit, yet Demis and ICK do - why are the former 1 point more and the latter seemingly not?

Point costs have always been a somewhat contentious issue, and it's hard to believe that GW follows a strict formula as long as they do arbitrary stuff like raising and lowering it for no apparent reason. After all, detachments have been around before the increase and they were better.

At the end of the day, some units are simply not taken, or not very often, and that's a sign of internal imbalance.

The formula I'm stating has been the same since 3rd edition of WHFB, in the original big red book, the difference being that at that time humans were base 5 pts per model. That makes 1 point for light armor more reasonable. The worth of that point of armor has many factors, the chief of which is how S vs Armor is handled, and that S does double duty in that you use it against T and it reduces defenses, all of which could easily be fixed by making armor penetration based on strength happen at 5 instead of 4, but I digress.

Yes you have to pay for the Detachment rules, yes even if you don't make use of it. If a model has a power that gives it a bonus against shooting, and you're up against chaos knights, you never get to use that power. A pity, but yes it's factored into the cost of the model. Hence if you buy infantry with the Empire, it's foolish not to use the detachments with them. As to your "other factors" of characters , magic and unit synergies; yes other armies pay for those as well, if you want to learn how the math works buy a 3rd ed big red book, the info is all there and they haven't changed the formula much, even after all these year.

Also, as to Crossbows not benefitting from detachment, you're mistaken as well. They get to reaction fire for another unit. As to Demigryphs not being more expensive, your math is wrong again. The cost of any cavalry is rider as on foot times two, plus the cost of the mount.

And yes point costs are contentious. Mostly for the reasons you mentioned, that the community doesn't feel that things are worth the cost they are assigned. That and rules change, so the value of fear in one edition is different from the value of fear in another (the same is true for most rules). Your supposition that detachment were better before though, is something I can't get behind. With all the changes in the rules from 7th to 8th, detachments are stronger than they have been in a long time.

And while some units are simply not taken, that may not be a sign that the internal balance is off. For example, the meta in your area may mean that you need armor piercing since all your enemies have high armor. In another area, you may need more cannons, since all your opponents rock a lot of giant monsters. Let's also not forget that specials and rares are more points efficient because of their slot, so people want more of them, or perhaps people want to paint less models. There are many factors that you're ignoring.

Petey
13-06-2014, 15:04
I HATE when people patronize empire for their state troops. Fine, keep em a lot of points if captain (similar to skaven cheiftain) is 45 pts base (without FP armor) AND warrior priests start at 55 pts and generals start at 70 pts (basically as good as noble from HE but no ASF and +1 W).

GW absolutely does not have a comp formula for things, they just go with what "feels right" and call it a day, leaving us to either play for fun or be disappointed with the comp version of the game.

You're completely wrong, go buy a 3rd ed. Big red book. When I get home tonight I can even find the page that they have points cost deconstruction for you. IT HAS NOT CHANGED.

theshoveller
13-06-2014, 16:08
You're completely wrong, go buy a 3rd ed. Big red book. When I get home tonight I can even find the page that they have points cost deconstruction for you. IT HAS NOT CHANGED.
If it hasn't changed, why do points values change at all?

olderplayer
13-06-2014, 16:20
GW absolutely does not have a comp formula for things, they just go with what "feels right" and call it a day, leaving us to either play for fun or be disappointed with the comp version of the game.

That, unfortunately, is true in part only in that the formula that they use misprices certain core stats and abilities and underprices others; that has long been a problem and complaint with GW. The army designers simply are too focused on fluff and fun and more artistically oriented than mathematically and rules oriented. GW does not appear to run simple unit against unit tests to evaluate points efficiency in combat based on average wounds caused and received and certainly does not run unit against unit simulations (which are not that hard to write and do given I can do it for fun) to evaluate the units. The result is that, even with GW doing a better job generally in achieving external and internal balance in the WHFB army books, nearly every time a new army book comes out it quickly becomes apparent which character, unit, and magic items choices are favored and which are less favored in a competitive or semi-competitive army list and what army builds will work and will not work. The fact that these become fairly obvious in part, but not entirely, within a few days after each army book is released is an issue. Things like rounding multiwound model point costs to the nearest 5 points often (with some exceptions) and not pricing methodically each upgrade for each model or unit mean that some models and units see a lot of play with certain options/upgrades almost always taken on such models and certain models and units see little play with certain options/upgrades not taken. (For example, why would one not take full plate armour over heavy armour or light armour on a captain or general? Similarly, why would a Dark Elf army not put a sea dragon cloak (+2 AS) on every master and dreadlord taken?) I never get the feel when I open a new army book that a group of people in GW actually sat down and reviewed the point costing of each unit and model and debated them thoroughly over time with the experience of a lot of play and mathhammer theory before releasing the army book to the public.

Let me just say that Empire armies with core infantry and great sword units in play are doing just fine and winning a lot in major, uncomped or lightly comped GT events. Empire has one of the stronger and more flexible books and a number of viable options to fit one's play-style. So complaints about the point costs of some infantry units are not going to find much sympathy with those of us with armies with fewer competitively viable unit options and builds and less balanced army books. Yes, the core infantry units are competitive mostly when they are combined with cannons, ME led Hellblasters (which are terrifying to some armies and units), light council magic builds, demigryph knights, steam tanks, and some 1+ AS cav units, but the base block of halberdiers with detachments is still the commonly seen core and are effective points denial and tar pit units and can win battles when used with other units to delay combat and deplete opposing units sufficiently to hold them up or destroy them in the later turns in the game. Maybe the key is to read some battle reports and tactical posts to understand how to synergize the army?

When the 8th ed Empire book first came out I was disappointed with the point costing of infantry. Of course, I was also even more disappointed with how they nerfed and then overcosted Flaggies, which really are part of the fluff of the army, and mortars (They were over-powered and undercosted before, but GW went too far in nerfing and then overcosting them.). With Empire infantry, GW clearly was thinking in terms of the benefits of the detachment system, the hatred augment and bound spell augments from War Priests and Arch Lectors, the Hold the Line benefits provided by generals and captains, and the two buff wagons when it priced Empire infantry. Frankly, Warrior Priests, Captains, and Arch Lectors and mages in the Empire book are really good values for their points costs and the benefits they confer to the Empire army. For that reason, I see a lot of Empire core infantry at GTs and not as much Empire core cavalry, even though the cav seemed like a great value when the army book first came out. The trend to cheap infantry in core in Empire will probably continue if we see more Wood Elf waywatchers and waystalkers being played and people react to the high armour save armies that have become popular, especially Warriors of Chaos, with greater strength shooting and anti-armour and ignore armour save magic and shooting options.

Even given that, it was pretty clear that swordsmen are a point too high in point cost but halberdiers and spearmen are probably about right by current 8th ed standands, now looking back. Archers are probably a point too high in cost but are brilliant when used as stubborn/steadfast detachments to hold something up and screen other units and protect war machines and bunker characters, like a master engineer or a mage; same is true of free company units (I found recently they actually did quite well as detachments in front of a unit of halberdiers with a crown of command character or great swords with stubborn and they actually killed stuff with the arch lector buffs). Crossbowmen and handgunners are too expensive simply because the move or shoot rule is too cumbersome for them to be of use

Of course, GW has continued to overprice infantry in army books, especially for play in comp systems like Swedish Comp and ETC where limits on unit size prevent using large and relatively cheap per model infantry blocks to exploit the steadfast rules and tar pit and wear down opponents. Warriuors of Chaos and marauders, that should be at the core and heart of a Warriors of Chaos army are now sufficiently overpriced that one hardly sees marauder infantry, except as a cheap and small mage bunker, and Warriors are replaced by core chariots, trolls in a Throgg list, etc. very often in core. Similarly, even with ASF, spearmen in the Dark Elf and High Elf books and swordmen in the Dark Elf book are overpriced for what they do and see relatively less play with the new army books. An elf base warrior costs 1.5 times or more than a halberdier and dies as easily or easier to base magic missiles and direct damage spells and shooting (at least when not hiding in a forest) and only has S3 due to the cost of ASF and better WS, I and LD (all of which are offset by hatred and the greater potential size of halberd units and the benefits of detachments).

EvanM
13-06-2014, 18:33
I understand it is an epidemic, yes there are some good rules for big infantry units but these units are expensive in pts, and elves chaos and men alike all have a hard time running core infantry, I get it.

I will continue playing with at least 100 state troops in every army list because I will never give up on my empire. I encourage others to play core infantry as well, we know theres issues with it but whatever happened to seeing state troops face off against marauders, high elf spearmen against dark elf spearmen, HE archers taking down orc boys........

now its just "hmm i wonder how many frostheart phoenixes my opponent is gonna bring..."

wtf. thats what I say.

**** it, make them free! make it so you can bring whatever army you want but you get a free unit of 400 pts of core infantry on top ( 40 HE spearmen/ 50 marauders / 50 swordsmen )

now then itd look like a real army in my mind.

Petey
13-06-2014, 20:02
If it hasn't changed, why do points values change at all?

They have changed the base cost of models, and how to cost cavalry (this happened in 6th edition) They have also recosted special rules (like undead, fear, stubborn etc) and of course the things that didn't exist in 3rd ed. The cost of S, T, WS etc has stayed the same, as has the cost of armor.

olderplayer
13-06-2014, 22:24
I will continue playing with at least 100 state troops in every army list because I will never give up on my empire. I encourage others to play core infantry as well, we know theres issues with it but whatever happened to seeing state troops face off against marauders, high elf spearmen against dark elf spearmen, HE archers taking down orc boys........
....
now then itd look like a real army in my mind.

You can run that kind of core just fine, just bring a cannon or two, some redirection and chaff units, a HBVG with a master engineer along, some decent characters (magic), and, then, maybe a steam tank to hold something up and threaten something (plus it makes a second cannon), a buff chariot or two (or not), a unit of knights, and a unit of demigryphs and rock and roll. If you're saying you just want to run state troops and nothing else, then that is a problem because that is not how the book was designed. Phoenixes are not that hard to kill if you've got the artillery to deal with them. Better yet, because your shooting is not magical, a HBVG or two can tear apart those white lion hordes and deal with some of the heavy armour nasties in the game right now. It is about synergy, balance, and tactics. I actually have seen someone do pretty well with that kind of build but it is not that easy and I think he had two stanks and a unit of greatswords and some artillery as well.

Katastrophe
13-06-2014, 22:38
If it hasn't changed, why do points values change at all?

Sell more models.

Actually they change because the game designer/writer determines that he want to incentivize one to use a particular unit. We have heard story after story of lack of play testing and even worse outright ignoring the play testers when they have describe problems with points and balance.

Ive been playing since 3rd and I still have the 3rd book and looking at some of the units its close to the cost using the formula and some costs are simply inexplicable (particularly after playing with the units).

EvanM
14-06-2014, 00:06
okay obviously I dont want just 400 state troops + general, no arty :p

heres my list at 2500 pts which is a little bit of a stretch and not ultimately optimized but decent for fun games:



unit
number
equipment


General of the Empire
1
Full Plate armor, shield, Runefang, Potion of Speed, dragonhelm


Battle Wizard
1
Lvl 2, Shadow


Battle Standard
1
Full plate, shield, 4++, ironcurse icon


Warrior Priest
1
Heavy Armor, Enchanted shield, shrieking blade (fear)


Battle Wizard
1
LvL 4, Light


Warrior Priest
1
Heavy armor, barded warhorse, great weapon, regen 6+


Swordsmen
48
FC


Halberdiers
48
FC


Reiksguard
9
FC, SoD


Demygryph Knights
3
Champ


Pistoliers
5
musician


Great Swords
10



Great Cannon
4



Helblaster Volley Gun
4
Master Engineer




its pretty good, i use everything in balance as opposed to all cav or those sorts of lists. Mix of decent things without going overboard. Also remember that this is like me buying all the "goodies" to make my army meet 2500 cuz Id usually play at 2000 ish with mostly the same models.


what ive found is that halberdiers die every single game but swordsmen are valiant and survive a long time! especially in a horde of 50.

infantry are usable, its just usually they do the same job as high elf archers, or lothern sea guard .... in an elite army with better choices, the bland core ones seem a burden.

OH also greatswords as a unit of 10 is pretty good at holding up units with low S because stubborn is super fricken good.

HurrDurr
16-06-2014, 05:42
4 cannons and 4 helblasters, you sneaky devil you.

Lord Solar Plexus
16-06-2014, 06:13
The formula I'm stating has been the same since 3rd edition of WHFB

So you agree with me that it is wrong? Because the times, they are a'changing, and so are circumstances.

This has very little to do with the local meta. Of course people will be more likely to take inefficient or overpriced or underperforming units in "fun games and pretzel tourneys". Heck, I took Handgunners and Flaggies myself just because I could. They did not and do not become any better though.

What factors precisely am I ignoring? You're just speculating what people might do or not while I have a solid explanation. If units are rarely taken in an environment where the best units are advisable, that's a clear indicator of which units are good or bad. Not that we can't see it by simply looking at the book - static units that can't cause casualties, have no armour or stats to speak off, no special rules or weapons to make up for it and so on are simply crap. :)



Let me just say that Empire armies with core infantry and great sword units in play are doing just fine and winning a lot in major, uncomped or lightly comped GT events.


I haven't even seen a single build like that at tournaments, let alone remember that it won the event.

The base block of halberdiers with detachments is not "still the commonly seen core", it's the only infantry core seen at all, and that's the problem. This is not a question of reading tactics posts (which are extremely rare), as you so disingeniously suggest. You even get to the heart of the matter when you say infantry is priced higher because one needs to spend more points on it to make it work. Yes, it is. That is the problem. ;)



for fun games
...
4 cannon - 4 HBVG
...
everything in balance


Could you please point out where exactly the balance is? I've read your gunline*10 list three times and completely fail to see it. I also wonder what exactly is fun about it. I'd probably pack up and leave.

GrandmasterWang
16-06-2014, 09:48
Hmmm... interesting list Evan. Did you say you horde the swordsmen??

Id play that list (ill play vs anylist at least twice) but agree with LSP that it dont seem like a 'fun' list lol.

I honestly think you would be better served splitting up the swordsmen. Multiple drops and more flexibility.

Also... you use 10 Greatswords touting their stubborn yet you have been bagging out the cost of the empire infantry. Try a detachment of 10 swordsmen... I mean you pay points for the detachment rule after all. They should form a much cheaper and potentially more resilient (parry) stubborn (due to parent unit) speed bump to the Greatswords.

A horde of swordsmen does look nice though :)

Sent from my GT-I9505 using Tapatalk

Metacarpi
16-06-2014, 10:13
Isn't that list illegal with the number of duplicate cannons and hellblaster choices? Or is there some qualifier in the Empire book that I'm unaware of?

GrandmasterWang
16-06-2014, 11:20
Isn't that list illegal with the number of duplicate cannons and hellblaster choices? Or is there some qualifier in the Empire book that I'm unaware of?

The list posted does break the duplicate rules. 4 rares ouch... nasty blasters.

In a game between friends it's all good though so long as everyone is on the same page.

The posted list is a prime example of subjective opinions. Who is really to say what a 'real' army should look like? Does the posted army better represent what an Empire army 'should' look like better than an all cavalry knight based empire army? Everyone is entitled to there own opinions

Sent from my GT-I9505 using Tapatalk

Petey
16-06-2014, 18:10
So you agree with me that it is wrong? Because the times, they are a'changing, and so are circumstances.

This has very little to do with the local meta. Of course people will be more likely to take inefficient or overpriced or underperforming units in "fun games and pretzel tourneys". Heck, I took Handgunners and Flaggies myself just because I could. They did not and do not become any better though.

So, in order,
1. Point costs for things need some restructuring. But not as much as most people think, definitely less than what the OP wants.
2. Mostly I was denouncing the folks who claim there isn't a pricing structure, because there is one, not actually saying that it doesn't need change
3. Meta most certainly changes what units are best. IE, way watchers will change the amount and frequency Heavy Cavalry is taken. As each book comes out, the meta changes a little bit. This has no bearing on whether something is correctly pointed or not. But it will change what people will and won't take in their lists.
4. Mostly I don't have complaints will much of what you've said, I'm just annoyed with the OP's suppositions and requests, as they clearly don't take the rest of the game into account (past Empire) and they are insulting, in that they assume non Empire player cannot empathize with/understand his points
5. As to our discussion on fast cavalry, these units shouldn't have heavy armor not because the rules not explicitly say they can't. They can't because it breaks the simulation. The game does have roots in simulation of medieval/renaissance warfare, in which, fast cavalry needed to have very little equipment. If they were heavily armed/armored they would not be able to fill that role. Since they don't explain this in the army books, most people forget that it's a design factor (like the OP) or never learn it in the first place.

EvanM
17-06-2014, 16:34
so, i screwed up, um I just use 1 helblaster and 1 great cannon.

I put "4" in that box on the spreadsheet to calculate total models and Pts per model................. sorry guys.

I think running 4 GC and 4 HBVG would kind of be a dick move.




and like I said, this is my "maximize my points" list, the 10 great swords have been doing a good job as a chaff unit (i know, what am I thinking, right?) but it kinda works. being armored with stubborn ld 8 is pretty good!


I horde the swordsmen and love it, detachments are cool.... IF AND ONLY IF your opponent has NO IDEA what they do. otherwise they just multi charge your detachment with something at the same time as the mainunit. They CAN be used but I kinda like committing to these sturdy blocks.

I meant my list is balanced because theres 2 guns, 3 cav units, 2 infantry units (main) so its kind of a combined arms army. A lot of the stuff could be trimmed to fit it in at like 2200 pts or 2000pts but im just trying out some toys *ehhhemmm* runefang *ehemmm*

olderplayer
17-06-2014, 17:54
I think running 4 GC and 4 HBVG would kind of be a dick move.
*
Yeah. max 2 HBVGs and two cannons with two engineers. If you have a stank, then one cannon and one HBVG is okay with one ME. The key is to balance the mix of artillery, steam tanks, and demigryph knights. If you go heavily, like 2 stanks, 2 units of DG knights and lots of artillery is where people tend to get upset.

I'd cut the halberds down and run some chaff detachments (where the parry save of swordsmen make sense in allowing detachments to survive a little bit better). Obivously, swordsmen are not optimal, look good but overcosted by a point as previously noted. What I found was really effective was stubborn crown on character with detachments as chaff/redirectors and mage bunkers; then they hold stuff up just long enough to be able to anticipate and deal with them or sidestep threats. A small detachment of archers is really useful as a mage or ME unit; can free reform and march our of trouble and away from threats and reduced rate of taking BS shooting hits. 10 greatswords are surprising, especially if area allows and accepts the use of smaller conga line units.

EvanM
17-06-2014, 21:11
yeah you sort of need to exploit the rules to get the most out of the infantry. Swordsmen arent optimal but they bring a very cheap way to get more survivability to your men. If you for instance just bring a larger unit of spearmen then the nuke spells get more hits and more kills.

the armor save and parry save are extremely helpful when you take a dozen wounds a turn and save 3-4 of them.

I actuallly still run them 5 wide by 2 deep, they die decently fast but usually last 2-3 turns if the unit they are facing is S3.

I like detachments, I also run the 50 halberdiers with 2 detachments of 25 swordsmen which is fun to do as well but I dont like it against MSU armies who I cant triple or double team against easily.

however paying 35 pts to get stubborn on 100 men is a very very good thing!