Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Imperial Armour Review Part 1: Eldar Units


Having read though the second edition of the Doom of Mymeara with excitement over the updated rules for Eldar warmachines and units I though I would share with you all what I though. This review will be in three parts, the First (this part) will be on the Eldar rules, the Second part will be covering the Rules for Corsairs, and the third Forces of the Imperium, Background and my overall opinion of the whole book. Anyway onto the Eldar units...


Forces of the Eldar

With an updated Imperial armour it means we get updates rules, and this time its the turn of the Eldar. Quite a lot of it is just a bit of a polish of the existing rules to bring them back up to date with 7th edition and the current Eldar codex. I will go though them unit by unit to give you a clear view of the changes, but I wont go over point changes exactly, as i'm not 100% sure what every unit used to be.

Shadow Specters

The first thing I noticed about the Shadow Spectres is that their profile is the same as the rest of them except for the Exarch who only has the traditional 1 instead of 2, which I only mention for the sake of continuity. I think the 2 wound exarch is silly, but such is life.

Anyway Shadow Spectres are a jet pack infantry unit who specialise in taking out tanks as well a being able to take out light infantry if needed. They are relatively low in number at 25 points a model but do have a 3+ save to keep them alive, but they also come with a spectre holo-field which gives them a 5+ cover save if they move, and a 4+ if they thrust in the previous turn. They also gain fear, and the exarch power forces enemy units within 12 to roll and extra D6 for leadership and moral tests and take the highest two. So straight away it makes them an interesting unit for psychological warfare if you can get them close to the enemy.

Each Spectre comes with a Prism rifle. This has two modes, one is an anti-infantry unit which is a strength 4 ap 4 blast, which is nice when you trying to take out Tau or Storm troopers. However the other mode I a strength 6 lance shot. I know it doesn't sound reliable at taking out tanks, but for each hit you get you can choose to exchange them all for a single shot with either +1 strength or -1 AP for each shot after the first. So soon you can have an Ap 1 shot with ease or upping the strength to 9 with out much of a problem.

However you still only get 1 shot, which isn't great at taking out tanks, and is poor when you face super heavy tanks. If you want specific anti-tank Aspect stick with Fire Dragons, but the Spectres give you options, which the Eldar pay a lot for. For 25 point a model you get an ok infantry killing unit and a risky one shot anti-tank shot which is very dependent on number of hits, so it wont take out flyers. But I believe that the psychological aspect of the unit is by far the most useful if you can keep them alive, however I have never used them... so that purely just looking at the rule rather than practical experience. Still I like this unit.

Irillyth, Phoenix lord of the Shadow Spectre

With a new aspect comes with a new Phoenix lord. He comes with the standard lord profile with a few extra bits of wargear and special rules. The weapon of choice for this lord is the Spear of Starlight, a heavy 3 strength 7 ap 2 weapon which can take out tanks with a bit of luck. It can also be used in combat with a bonus to strength and ap 3 (or 2 on the charge) which isn't too bad. The extra special rules are fear, night vision, hit and run and acute sense. First of all I have no idea why he has acute senses as he can't outflank as far as I can see... so yer. Hit and run helps his unit stay out of combat where he doesn't really want to be when he could be shooting at stuff. He also ha the Spectre exarch power which is handy, but this combines with his warlord trait. If an enemy unit within 12 inches targets his unit they have to take a leadership test, if they fail they can only snap fire at him.

Overall I have no idea why you would take him really other than fluff or if you really like Shadow Spectres, a he doesn't add all that much bar a bit of a beat stick. He's ok as a combat character but in an Eldar army I feel your HQ should help your force more than be a combat monster, but that's just me.

Eldar Hornet

This is the fast attack choice which invalidates the vyper, it has higher armour, not open topped, two weapons which can be upgraded like the vypers with the addition of pulse lasers and come equipped with star engines. Also you can scout (so outflank) and ha acute senses, it also can go flat out and still snap shoot. But the nail in the coffin is its only 20 points more than a vyper with 2 weapons. For those 20 points you get a hell of a lot and really unless your on a points budget take a hornet. Thanks to do points drop of the vyper in the recent codex, the vyper I still viable, but not so long ago the vyper and hornet used to be the same points and the vyper never stood a chance.

Focusing on the Hornet now, if you pay 80 points you can have 4 strength 8 ap 2 shots on a fast skimmer which outflanks. This is very powerful but also still quite weak, as 2 hull points with av 11 isn't going to be winning any wars of attrition. But if you are playing eldar in an war of attrition you are doing it wrong (unless your just using wraith units). If I had a unit of 3, I would use the Hornets in every game, they really do look amazing.

Lynx

Now here we have one of the biggest changes to the units, the lynx is no longer a super heavy lord of war. What we now have is a 5 hull point heavy support unit (we have too many heavy support units) and has taken about a 100 point drop. Other changes include it armour which ha improved, and its weapon which is no longer a pulsar, its now a lynx pulsar. It has also lost its titan holo-field so its no longer able to just dodge shots. Oh and its now a flyer with hover.

The Lynx Pulsar now has two firing modes, Saturation, which is a single 48 inch large blast D weapon (so similar but weaker than it used to be) and Salvo, which gives you 3 twin-linked D shots at 24 inches. While it has lost a lot of range the salvo mode could be very devastating against a super heavy or gargantuan, 3 twin-linked D shots is nothing to sneer at. The option of swapping it for a Sonic lance is still there if you bought the model before it got discontinued.

Its special rule is called Sky-hunter, while it a flyer the lynx can only make snap shots but when its hovering it counts as a fast skimmer. Even though its a flyer you can choose to start on the table but you can't take to the sky until turn 2. Why this rule is called sky-hunter I have no idea as its not very good at hunting in the sky.... but what ever. If you are flying you might as well jinx as you lose nothing at all.

I am very mixed on this change, I doubt I will be using it as a flyer all that much so I can actually shoot with it weapon, but the twin-linked snap-shots aren't exactly terrible. Even though its got 5 hull points, AV 12 won't keep it alive all that long. So when I next use it, I will have to keep it off the table and try and bring it on turn 2 and kill what ever needs killing. I think the lynx is going to be a nice addition to the Eldar force but competing with so much in the heavy support slots I don't think it will be an auto-include. Watch this space, I will try and use mine soon.

NightWing

The nightwing is a light flyer with 2 hull points and a good arsenal. It come with two shuriken cannons and two bright lances, so I can take down another flyer with ease. You can buy a second one for a unit of 2 so you can hunt down bigger flyers. While only having av 10 and 2 hull points its easy to blow out the sky, but the nightwing has a little trick for that, it come with Agile and Stealth, so a 6+ cover save normally, but if it jinks, it goes to a 2+ cover save, which is a tough nut to crack. Unfortunately every one and his dog ignores cover saves thanks to formations and special rules so its less useful than you might think at first. It also comes with vector dancer to you can get what you need to. You can buy a holo field for a guaranteed save though which I am thinking you might need to do in order to survive an unfortunate match up.

For 125 points I think its a cool flyer but you are going to be jinking most of the time which reduces its ability to actually deal damage but if you can place it well I don't see how it won't be a great addition to an Eldar force.

Pheonix Bomber

A very different flyer to the Nightwing, still av 10 with stealth, but 3 hull points. It focus is taking out infantry on the ground as it has strafing run and weapons for taking down infantry. It comes with two shuriken cannons, two pheonix bombers and a pulse laser. The pulse laser appears to be more to defend itself if another flyer attempts to take it out the sky, or if you need to desperately take out a tank.

It really shines when shooting at marines in the open, its phoenix missile launchers have 3 strength 5 ap 3 shots, so with two of them and the shuriken cannons they will be hitting on 2+ then hopefully just shred infantry. However for this rather specialised role you are paying just over 200 points, which is a little pricey for something which struggles to shift models who are in cover. Personally I don't rate the bomber but if you can come up with a role for it please comment.

Vampire Raider

A super heavy flyer (with hover) with 12 hull points will be hard to shift, but it also ha a 4+ invulnerable so good luck doing anything to it. This flyer has a transport capacity of 30 models so I can move units where they need to go, but its armament is rather weak. They can have a scatter laser and a twin-linked pulse laser, so nothing amazing, but you can swap the pulse laser for a twin-linked pulsar which helps.

I really don't get exited about this unit, its resilient and can hold an army. But its very dull and I can't help but feel its better to use this in a massive game (6k+) where you need move an army in order to reinforce a section of the battlefield. Its jut very expensive and dull.

Warp Hunter

Another heavy support unit for the Eldar, this tank is an odd one, its the Eldars Barrage tank. It has the same stats as the other eldar tanks like a falcon for fire prism, but its weapon is very unique. Unlike the large range of the Imperial Artillery tanks, the Warp hunter only has a 36 inch range, but what it lacks in range it make up for in damage. It fire D3+1 3 inch blasts, and its strength D ap 2. However before you cry out op, it gets -1 to its roll on the D chart, so it can never roll a 6. But still it has the possibility to just murder tanks and monsters that it can hit. Infantry will still die to it, but it only a 3 inch blast so they aren't too worried about that as they can just hide in cover (it can't ignore that).

However it comes with a second firing mode, allowing it to use to flame template, still D -1 ap 2 shot, and if you use this you are using it as a last ditch attempt to survive (as otherwise you would just move away). It makes it a flamer with ap 2 which wounds on a 2+, very scary.

I have one of these models and will be using it in the future, but how I will be using it I don't know. It doesn't have the range to sit at the very back, so I will have to keep in supported, maybe with guardian defenders to protect it? Not too sure but this model has the potential to really do some damage.

Wraithseer

Like a Wraithlord the wraithseer is a strength 8, toughens 8 monstrous creature with 4 wounds. Unlike the wraithlord, the wraithseer is a HQ choice and a psyker. Since his last iteration he has been improved in a few subtle ways. No longer does he require a second Hq unit to field him, he can now just be selected on his own to lead your force to victory. He can take a heavy weapon for his shoulder like the wraithlord, but also has the option of a D-cannon or wraithcannon so can take out tanks with ease. As standard the wraithseer comes with a ghostspear which increases his strength to 10 and give him sunder (re-roll failed armour penetration rolls).

In addition to being a kick as beat stick, the Wraithseer has some abilities to boost your force. Being a level 1 pyker with a twist, he comes with 3 powers as standard and can cast one of them a turn. His powers focus around other wraith units, he can give another wraith unit (not knight) fleet, or give a wraith unit feel no pain (5+), again not wraith. Both of those powers can help a wriath unit either get into combat, or just be even harder to shift. The 3rd power is an assault D6 witchfire attack which won't do much damage but forces the unit to take a pinning test at -2 ld.

Over all I think the Wraithseer is a nice unit to add to a wraith heavy army, adding both a few useful powers as well as being able to take a punch.

Skathach Wraithknight

A Wraithknight that is designed to protect the webway but is now available for you to use on the battlefield. I am not surprised that they released a new wraithknight as the original is so popular. This monster has the same basic profile as the regular wraithknight and can be used instead of one in any formation or detachment which is allowed to take a regular wraithknight.

Now the two difference between the two knights are the weapon options and a webway shunt generator. The shunt generator allows the knight to make a special shunt move instead of moving. It allows the knight to take it off the table and redeploy it within 12 inches of its starting position then scatter D6 inches then you can shoot, run or charge a normal, OR place it into ongoing reserve. If you scatter onto an enemy unit or land within 1 inch you take a wound and are forced into ongoing reserve. Now I only see this being useful for getting out of combat and recharging or jut getting away from a scary unit as you can just jump within 12 inches anyway so no real benefit unless you need a very lucky scatter to move a little extra. Its just a little extra protection from getting bogged down in combat as this guy wants to be shooting.

Speaking of shooting you get a choice of two weapons, either two Inferno Lances or Deathshroud cannons. The inferno lances are your anti-tank option, each gun get D3+2 meltagun shots at 36 inches, so with both of them that's a minimum of 3 shots each and a very dead something. The deathshroud on the other hand kills infantry, with two firing modes. The first is a strength 7 ap 4 hellstorm template with shred and momofilament. The other is a 7 inch blast again with monofilament and shred. Its not going to take out terminators but infantry will die, even if its just because of the sheer number of wounds it will cause, its best at slaughtering Tau but marines will die in a pinch. If you were stuck in combat with a horde of something and shunt out of combat you can then just flame them as they stay in a compact formation as they can't move after you leave combat.

Personally I think the version with Inferno lances is the better option, and for 315 points its a steal. It doesn't get an invulnerable save unless you drop a gun which I can't say I would do as I would want maximum damage from it. Still a scary unit to face.


Wasp Assault Walker

The wasp is an elite war walker, its profile is exactly the same, its weapon options are the same the only difference is they have a wasp jump pack. The jump pack allows the wast to use it in either the movement phase or assault phase. If used in the movement phase the walker can move between 8 and 12 inches in a single direction ignoring terrain and models but it can only fire snap shots. If its used in the assault phase they roll an extra D6 for their charge and discard the lowest and inflict D6+1 hammer of wrath attacks.

Its an extra 10 points for the wasp over a war walker and really I quite like it, as I like war walkers in general and the additional movement of kick in the assault phase is quite a nice addition. I would likely just use them as a war walker, supporting other units and if I need to run away I have that option, or if I need to take out a tank on 1 hull point I can just hammer it to death. Not a bad unit.

Scorpion and Cobra

I am combining these two together as they aren't all that different from their previous incarnations, and are rather similar. Both are 9 hull point av 12 super heavy fast skimmer. The Scorpion come with a twin-linked Pulsar (2 shot, 72 inch, large blast D weapon) while the cobra come with its D-impaler (1 shot 36 inch, 7” blast D weapon which can stay in place and kill things later on in the game). For the points I would say that they are your average lord of war, and which one to take is more a matter of taste than anything else.

The only real change for them is they both lose the titan holo-field and gain Improved holo-fields. This means they now have a 4+ invulnerable save against shooting and in combat, which does help improve its survivability, but not quite as much as the titan holo field did. I understand the change though as it keeps the mechanics streamlined and wont surprise opponents with some complex rule.

Not much to say, want a lord of war, take one.


Revenant and Phantom Titan

I have saved the Titans for last and lumped them together as they are rather similar bar the size. Being eldar they can't just have something like every one else, so they have two very 'unique' rules. The first is something they have always had, Titan holo fields. When they are hit by an attack (combat or shooting) roll a D6, if they moved they are hit on a 4+ other wise it 3+. So its very good protection against D weapons as half of them don't even hit you. Now its a very strong rule but they also have a rule called wraith titan which is just silly. When attacked in close combat by units which are not super heavy or Gargantuan, they can only be hit on 6+ regardless of ws or OTHER CONSIDERATIONS so they ignore other special rule as well. Super heavys and gargantuans hit on a 5+ instead... now let that sink in. Not only do you need a stupid roll to hit, the holo fields kick in and knock some of those few hits off as well. What the hell are they thinking? Also the rule allows them to run 12 inches if it has only fired a single weapon. Now both titans have those special rules making them rather hard to hit in combat and shooting... crazy.

The Revenant is the smaller of the two, with av 12 and 9 hull points its possible to take out in a turn or two (bar the rule above). It comes with jump jets which allow it to move 36 inches in the movement phase ignoring terrain and models. So its very manoeuvrable which an eldar titan should be with weak armour. Its weapons pack one hell of a punch though, either Pulsars or Sonic lances. The sonic lance is a ap 2 hellstorm template which always wounds on a 3+ so will kill any unit it touches. Pulsars are 2 shot large blast D weapons, so again will destroy vehicles with ease. In the past you always had to have two of the same weapon, but now it appears that you can have one of each. As that has never been an option in the past it does get me thinking would it be worth taking mixed weapons? Probably not, as one is close range and the other is rather long I don't see the benefit of two different weapons. It also now has a heavy 4 skyfire missiles so it can now also take out flyers. For 900 points you get a very powerful killing unit, and if it didn't have the wraith titan I would say its great, but as it is, its very over powered. It should have a weakness, and combat would have been that but no longer.

The Phantom is the Eldars version of the Warlord, its the biggest of their titans and ups its armour to 13 and 24 hull points. Being bigger, it ups its weapons as well, being able to take two of the three options available to it. Phantom pulsar is a heavy 4 large blast D weapon with ap 1 which will just kill everything. The D-bombard option is a primary 1, 10 inch blast D weapon which leaves the template in place and any models left under it at the beginning of any subsequent movement phases or shooting phase take a single D hit. And it remains until your next turn. That can block off entire sections of the battlefield as no one wants to risk taking extra D hits for no reason. Take two of these on it and you can just nuke your opponents army and watch it die in its own turn. This is an odd change as once upon a time it just ignored void and power shields but now it just kill the planet. The final weapon option is the Phantom glaive, a D melee weapon (it only ha 3 attacks so nothing to worry about) but if you take a wound or hull point the model can only snap shoot and their attacks are reduced to 1. While I don't rate this option its a nice addition and will stop a knight from murdering it in combat (bar wraith titan that is). They also come with the same anti-air missiles as well as an extra anti-tank missile launcher.

For 2500 points the phantom can and will murder a lot, as it should as it like the warlord. But again why is it so resilient in combat? Being able to nuke the battlefield is a bit weird, especially leaving temples so you kill off what ever you failed in your turn. Just very powerful, and I don't know if 2500 is enough, I would have to test it out.

Anyway that is all of the Eldar units, with only 1 thing missing, the Firestorm which isn't in the book for the Eldar for some reason. Anyway next Tuesday I will review the Eldar Corsairs then the Imperial forces and Background.

What do you think of the Eldar units? Have I missed anything?

1 comment:

  1. Hi Malduran, thanks for the review, I only just saw it today. I quite liked it. Maybe some more pics would be nice though :)

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