I just read through an thread where a number of posters expressed how great it was that it is now possible to heal stegadons using an lore of life slann which reminded me that in 8:th edition, TK and VC are no longer the only armies that can heal their units back to life. This made me think about what the TK skeleton warrior has going for it in the new edition and I must say the situation appears rather grim. Please note that this post isn't about skeleton warriors in general, VC skeleton warriors and TK skeleton warriors functions very differently so many of the things mentioned in this post might not apply to the former type of undead.

The stats of an TK skeleton warrior are worse than an goblin but the warrior costs more than twice the amount of it's goblinoid counterpart if similarly equipped. Now, we should remember that goblins are generally not considered very good for their point in 8:th edition or in 7:th edition so we are not comparing to an undercosted unit type. The difference in points between the two unit types are represented by the fact that the skeleton warrior have the undead special rule. Lets see how what benefits this special rule brings the warrior:

+ Immune to psychology
+ Cause fear
+ No break tests

And for the disadvantages:

- May never march
- May only hold when charged
- Crumbles when losing combat

Lets look at each of these points in more detail. With the new rules for standard bearers psychology has little impact on the game in most cases. Thus being immune to psychology is less important than ever meaning that what was previously a great benefit is now worth very little. With the new fear rules, causing fear is no longer very advantageous. It's certainly an boon but not the large benefit it was in 7:th edition. Not having to taking break tests used to be HUGE in 7:th edition before the steadfast rules was introduced, in 8:th edition break tests are no longer that bad for large blocks of weak core infantry so this benefit has also diminished in value in 8:th edition.

As for the weak points: Never being able to march is and will always be an major disadvantage for any unit in the game. The new rules for charging has made this special rule a bit more bearable but not being able to march is still a huge disadvantage for M4 infantry. Only being able to hold when charged as well as being unable to flee if losing combat badly is an sure way of being wiped out to the last man which is more serious in 8:th edition than in 7:th edition since half dead units no longer gives any victory points. The last point is the most important disadvantage of the undead rule, never fleeing and only crumbling used to be what made undead infantry units good. In the new edition it is actually an disadvantage since it means that undead infantry units will always give the opponent VP if loosing combat (since they will never break and later rally denying VP) and perhaps more importantly, due to the new steadfast rules, taking an (in many cases rerollable) unmodified roll on the generals leadership is almost always an better deal than losing models based on CR.

Due to the changes introduced in 8:th edition, I no longer think that it is advantageous for skeleton warriors to have the TK undead special rule (not VC undead special rule given to VC warriors which is an different cup of tea). In fact I would rather have them cost the same amount of points and not having the undead special rule at all thus being able to march, flee instead of being annihilated and taking advantage of the steadfast rule.

I therefore believe that TK skeleton warriors in their current form should cost no more than an goblin (shock!!). I would love to hear from you guys what you think that they should cost and why?