View Full Version : New to Fantasy, which army?

19-12-2006, 16:20
Hello all. I am an avid 40k player with four armies, and I am looking to start playing fantasy. There are a few armies I like the look of, but I could do with a bit of help to save me buying all the army books. I would like a versatile army, and one that can compete with my friends' Wood Elves and Dark Elves.... model wise I like the look of High Elves, Brettonian, Tomb Kings and Empire. Would anybody recommend any of these? I know that Empire are getting a new book and models so they could be a bit of an unknown entity at the moment..... any help is greatly appreciated.

19-12-2006, 16:37
Empire and Lizardmen are the most diverse armies. They are strong in all areas

Chaos armies tend to be lopsided in their abilities, and the troops are expensive.

Dwarves are the Space Marines of the fantasy world. Suit them up with a lot of war machines and thunderers and your opponents will be nothing more than blood stains on the board. Super powerful army but boring to play as or against.

high elves and dark elves both need to be revised to really be competitive now.

Orks and Goblins are designed to be fun armies as well as good armies. In the end when rules are put in place to make something "funny" or "orky" then the army inherently has a big flaw.

Undead are undead, think necrons who never take leadership checks and get no saves and can be summoned back.

19-12-2006, 16:41
Thanks for the help.

What do you think of Brettonians?

Any clue as to when they may revise those elves?

Murderous Monkey
19-12-2006, 16:49
There are have been a few threads about suggested beginners armies recently so I'd have a scout around and see what people have recommended before as general points. There's a useful thread asking for summaries of the various armies that's fairly current too, which might give you some basic info to get you started.

As for your suggested armies...

Empire is getting a revamp (general release just after christmas) and is a nice flexible list. They do a bit of everything and consequently offer tactical flexibility. I like them, but won't be collecting them any time soon as I've got a couple of armies on the go at the moment... and my regular opponent plays them anyway. I really would recommend them, especially as a long term army (due to that flexibility I mentioned before - by adding more units you can make your primary army play in a completely different way).

High Elves have some nice models and great background - not the best balanced of lists AND are due for a refit. I'd hold back until they're rereleased... or until we get some rumours for them. Also, make sure you like painting white first. I eventually went for Wood Elves due to painting problems, despite High Elves being my favourite army. One day I'll go back, but not yet.

Bretonnians have great cavalry, pegasus riding knights and some beautiful models. They're easy to use and learn with because cavalry is fairly effective and plain easier to use as a beginner. They might be a good choice but some people really don't like playing them and some people find them a little one-dimensional. Super painting opportunities and a general thumbs up from me, but a lack of flexibility, especially compared to the other armies you've chosen, might get you bored before too long.

Tomb Kings are the most reliable. Their magic always works and their soldiers never run. Hard to use well I believe (although not having played as them I'm relying on others for that info) but easy to paint and have a nice theme to them as well. I'd steer clear as a first army just because they seem to work in a very different way to most other armies and that might make learning the game a little harder. Don't be dissuaded though if you really like them as it's always worthwhile in the end and you'll have far more fun with something you genuinely like the look and feel of.

Ultimately I make decisions upon background and model quality, and worry about winning later. Proxy a bit and search for some tactics threads to get a feel. Maybe glance at CMON or the painting forum to see which models inspire you the most and then make your decision.

Have fun whatever you choose!

19-12-2006, 17:02
Well, let's see...

High Elves:
Pros: Great fluff, reward nice painting greatly, very nice miniatures (except for the spearelves and the plastic bolt-thrower) and would make very cool games against your friend's Dark Elves.

Cons: Elves aren't exactly a "beginner's army". Elves are a bit more tricky to use than other armies so if you have to win to stick with your army and have a low tolerance for "losing to learn the game", maybe HE aren't for you. Also, the HE list is quite inbalanced. It's general consensus that some units are very good for their pts cost, others are not so good. The fact that HE have a heavy cav unit for a core choice is also quite odd in my opinion.

Pros: Nice fluff, lots of historical references, can look fantastic on the tabletop, plastic miniatures for relatively expensive (pts-wise) units -> quite cheap

Cons: Generally, Brets are considered a bit of a one-trick-ponyesque army since many people tend to go for all knights and, even worse, focussing heavily on Pegasus Knights. These armies are quite ....straightforward if you want to put it nicely so if you want to enjoy the army (AND ensure that both of you have fun), go for a balanced force, include Men at Arms and such. There's a lot of raving going on about Brets here and there so prove them wrong. ;)

Tomb Kings:
To be honest, I don't know much about TK armies; I think they're one of the rarer ones really, depend very much on magic and I think there was something about their shooting...

Pro: Lots of historical references, lots of fluff, very diverse army, new army book upcoming, many new miniatures (don't know if you prefer them to the old ones though), can also look very good on the tabletop

Cons: Just don't fall for the gunline or similar min-maxing things. Otherwise, I think this army is a very nice one. Another con could be that there will be many(x18) Empire armies around in the next year.

So all in all, I'd say that Empire gives you the best opportunities to learn the game. The army list has all kinds of very different units, is new (which means: shiny and fun new toys) and should be balanced too.

19-12-2006, 17:07
I am a very successful 40K player so when I got into fantasy I checked around to see what the hardest army to wint with was and the answers were High elves and Empire. Now the Empire have gotten a lot tougher and Skaven have gotten a alot weaker.

I would encourage you to take the underdog army and learn to beat people down with it. Then when you play as a powerhouse like dwarves or bretonians you can truly appreciate the anihilation.

The previous poster was correct about brets, theya re one dimensional and good at it. Charge, lets see, charge, hmm what am I going to do this turn, oh eyah, charge. Losing to a Bret player is a function of game mechanics and not skill or tactics.

Winning with an old Empire list was pure skill and tactics, with a lot of luck thrown in.

19-12-2006, 17:24
Thanks to everyone who has replied. Seems like Empire could be a good choice..... I love the idea of cavalry, but would prefer not to have to paint the heraldry, as I generally stick to basic schemes as I don't have the time for more elaborate work usually.

How would these guys fare against Wood Elves? My friend has roughly:

20 Archers
5 Wild Riders
20 Spear boys
2 Treemen
20 Dryads
10 Glade riders
20 Wardancers

19-12-2006, 17:32
High Elves have some nice models and great background - not the best balanced of lists AND are due for a refit. I'd hold back until they're rereleased... or until we get some rumours for them. Also, make sure you like painting white first. I eventually went for Wood Elves due to painting problems, despite High Elves being my favourite army. One day I'll go back, but not yet.

Of course, you can always paint your High Elves green (http://uk.games-workshop.com/highelves/here-be-dragons/1/)!

Murderous Monkey
19-12-2006, 18:32
I can only hope for the sake of my bank balance that painting Chaos and Wood Elves keeps me honest for the time being. I've still got most of my Chaos army to paint and have already ripped open my Wood Elf Battalion. The models do look good though - maybe I'll experiment on my Tyrion model and see how I feel when the new release occurs this summer.

Thanks for the link though, some of those models look pretty darn nifty!

19-12-2006, 20:57
I chose High Elves as my first army in Warhammer simply because they have some of my favorite models. Everyone was against a newbie playing High Elves since they can be difficult to win with (low toughness and low strength on nearly all of their units) but eventually I got the tactic down. Everyone assumes High Elves are an offensive army since they're mainly cavalry, but in reality they're very very good at being defensive.
Just line up your bolt throwers (a must in most HE armies) and your mages and let loose a barrage that causes your enemies to start moving towards you! Against other extremely defensive armies (like dwarves or shooty empire armies) you have your weaknesses, considering you'll have low numbers and you'll rely on having them march towards you.

HE are a great army, but you need to play exactly to their strengths. You can't expect to have an infantry army win most battles against other infantry armies because they're simply not strong enough to do so.

Empire are fantastic. Very versatile and very strong in nearly all aspects. Want a cavalry army? sure thing! Want an infantry army? You got it! Want a shooty army? Go for it!

19-12-2006, 21:35
Empire are an interesting matchup with Wood Elves. Wood Elves are going to be able to outshoot you and things like cannons aren't going to do as well against skirmishers. I think things like pistoliers and handgunners would do fairly well against WE, but I'm not an Empire player, so I am just speculating here. He is probably going to force you to come after him, so a couple fast units would probably be to your advantage.