Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Eldar, Tournament Afterthoughts

Two weekends ago Millennium Game ran a 1500 point comp themed tournament and this would be my first time using my Eldar in a tournament setting. I placed 8th out of 14 players with a total of 47 points while the top player earned 71 battle points. This was advertised as a comped event so I planned my list accordingly and the only duplicate unit I brought was two guardian squads. Since I want to either run a full Eldar list or a Eldar/Tau list for this fall's Da Boyz GT, I figured I would start tinkering with some combinations. 

Here is the 1500pt list I brought:

Farseer - Runes of Witnessing and Spirit Stones
Avatar of Khaine

10 Guardians with Scatter Laser Platform
10 Guardians with Scatter Laser Platform
6 Rangers

Fast Attack:
7 Warp Spiders - Exarch, TL Death Spinners, Fast Shot, Marksman Eye

5 Dark Reapers - Exarch with Tempest Launcher, Fast Shot
1 Support Battery - D Cannon
2 War Walkers with EML - Flakk upgrade

Tau Commander - Airburst Frag Projector, Plasma Gun, Iridium Armor, Command and Control Node, Multi-Spectrum Suite

7 Fire Warriors with Bonding Knife

 Going into the event I knew my biggest weakness was going to be anti-air since my only dedicated AA unit were my walkers. I planned on keeping them near cover and within reach of my Farseer so that they could benefit from any beneficial psychic powers. I was confident that everything else would do fine as this is a predominately foot list and I planned on shooting the heck out of my opponents while slowly working my way up the field.

My first game was against a guard army who had a good combination of units. He totally kicked my butt and it was well deserved as I did some dumb things like focus on his guard blobs instead of targeting his HQ squad in the Chimera. Once his Valkyries knocked out my walkers he pretty much ran all over the rest of my army.

My second game was against a Chaos Black Legion player who ran a brutal list. Something like 10 terminators, 2 CSM squads in rhinos, 2 Forge fiends, and 2 heldrakes. I was able to take out 1 forge fiend and the 10 man termi squad but as in the first game, once he knocked out my walkers the 2 heldrakes pretty much owned the game.

My last game was against a leaf-blower type army. 4 Chimeras, 3 medusas, 2 valkyries. The terrain was more favorable to me in this game and I was able to cripple most of his light armor in the first 2 turns and I was able to down one of the Valkyries early on. This was a kill point match so I was able to rack up the points and kept most of my units in cover to avoid the medusas.

So what worked and what didn't work that weekend?

Units that performed as expected or above.

The Tau commander was there purely to buff the reapers by giving them all re-roll to hits and ignore cover with their reaper launchers. For the most part this worked well but once my opponents started to figure that out they poured a lot of fire power into that unit. Having the Tau commander soak up most of the shots paid off well I think this unit performed great. Yes it is expensive but they were able to put out a decent amount of fire power and absorb a lot of attention. In my first two games they lasted to near the end and in the last game I had only lost two.

The spiders worked great as well. Being able to move across the field with ease and shoot up troops was great. In my first game they took out a squadron of sentinels and put some wounds on a flyer. In the second game they helped whittle down the termis and were able to pop a rhino. In my last game they chewed through guardsmen. I always ran these guys in the last codex and now they are even better.

The Avatar did what we was supposed to do and that was to keep my units from running off of the board. He lived through all three games, which surprised me as I did not roll fortune at all that day. I pretty much kept him surrounded by the guardians and moved him up to keep my units fearless. I think the reaper squad helped draw fire away from him in all three games.

The guardians with a scatter laser did ok. Bumping guardians up to BS4 and giving them battle focus make them a no-brainer for a troop choice. I can't see any reason why I would want to take Dire Avengers over them in most games. At higher points I would like to include some warlocks to help buff them or curse my opponents.

While my walkers were only able to down 1 aircraft out of all three games I am hesitant on scrapping them. They were still great against light armor and infantry blobs. Plus I was lucky with a few of my 5+ invul saves, they were pretty much top priority for all three of my opponents due to the threat to their aircraft.

What did not work

The D-Cannon seemed to be a waste of points. Having a 24" inch range was limiting and when I was able to shoot my scatter die wanted to deviate. I planned on running more in a larger game but I may swap it out for more walkers or a falcon.

So with my first three tournament games under my belt, I like the direction that Eldar are going. My next decision is do I want to invest in a Wraith Knight or a Riptide? Should I run an aegis line to provide additional AA or should I consider the Crimson Hunter. While I do own a few wave serpents, a falcon, and a doom weaver; I have always been partial to a foot list. Running tau as allies complements this play style well. What have you fellow Eldar players think?


  1. A Riptide would be a great addition as that can also provide AA for you, and Guided/Prescienced Ion Templates hurt!, and Riptide's are as tough as old boots too.

    Scatter Laser and Cannon Wave Serpents work very well, as there resilient (unless CC'd ) and can churn out a lot of Twin Linked S6/7 shots and really help force mobility.

  2. Good write up, thanks. I have been putting starcannons on my guardian units, but scatter lasers making the rest of the squad get de-facto "guide" is tempting. I have been tempted to add Tau to my Eldar lists, but the idea of buying models from yet another army is off-putting.

    1. Luckily I have been collecting tau well before Eldar so the only new unit I'd need to buy would be a Riptide.

  3. Laser lock is per model only. Guardians gain no benefit from that rule. Only vehicles or MCs who have a scatter laser and something else.

    1. Yup, I've noticed a lot of confusion on that as well. I'm considering buying more war walkers and adding a Scatter Laser/Bright lance combo to bump up my anti-armor capability since the bulk of my army is ST6/7

    2. Yeah, that came from the codex rules leak, they way the leak was worded it sounded as if Laser lock affected the whole unit. Obviously some people never bothered to actually check the rule when they got the codex.

  4. the meta in the area does seem to average 2 flyers unfortunately so I would say if AA is your problem the riptide is the way to go, he can even get interceptor! I run mine with ion accel. Twin fusion blaster(now that fusions are 18"!!!) Velocity tracker and early warning for sky fire and interceptor if I have the points I'll throw a missile drone on for that 4++ and 2 missile shots ...I can say for my gt list I would be worried about AA big time if I didn't have a few serpents to go with the BS5 quad gun, I still think all the new giant MC'S (riptide,wraithknight, Trygon, dreadknight) should be able to swipe at flyers but that's just me haha

  5. The Riptide is great at Intercepting deep-striking drop pods and Terminators, but if you really want AA then you are better off with a squad of Broadsides with Skyfire. They can field more drones to absorb wounds and have a higher strength gun to threaten flyers. With the Tau Commander's PENchip conveying Tank Hunter they're almost assured of bringing down any flyer in the game.

    Honestly, I would suggest dropping the Reapers and DCannon and replacing them with far more durable allied Broadsides. Taking hits on the attached Tau Co. is only going to work until you face (more skilled) opponents with indirect barrages who can target the squishy Reapers.