Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Today in Alwful Warseer Tactics Part 13

You know what time it is... it's been a while since the last one of these.  Not because Warseer drones got any smarter, but because I simply haven't ventured to Warseer.  This is a short one, but near and dear to my heart.  It's about which of the three elite Dark Elf infantry units a person should bring in their list.

Just to make it clear right now, here is all you need to know about Dark Elf infantry:

1.  Executioners suck.  They need a Hag BSB and a Cauldron of Blood to be better than Blackguard.  If you give a Blackguard unit a BSB and a CoB, just to make the comparison fair, there is no comparison.  And running both units naked, Executioners are laughably bad.

2.  Witches can be good... if you buy them a Cob to babysit them.  My triple Witch horde list with 3 CoBs and Hellebron is nasty.  Not too many units want to go toe to toe with them in combat.  However, Witches naked, with no supporting units frankly blow. 

3.  Blackguard own.  Blackguard are good for the very fact that they don't need a CoB or character to buff them.  Their job is to puree hordes and elite units alike, and they do that without adding 300+ points of buffs.  The fact that you can count on them to do their job without baby sitting them with buffs is why they are clearly superior.

So onto the minion's question and my answer, followed by moronic answers I will snowmobile, as always, in orange...
Asphodel: I run a corsair-themed DE army (heavy on corsairs and core troops, COK, DR and RBT - no hydra or COB) and am on a tight budget, so I'm looking to build one unit of execs, witch elves or blackguard.

I much prefer the exec models, but they make me nervous because of those great weapons - I'm concerned that they can only be effective in blocks of 20+, at a cost of >$125 CAD. WE don't really fit the theme, but they can get shoe-horned in, and I don't like the minis but I really like their hitting power. BG seem to be a popular choice, but for the life of me I don't get why - and I don't like the minis or their fluffability - but if they're the best then I'm open to experimenting with them.

I'm looking for perspectives from players that have experience fighting DE - which of these three types of units do you find the most challenging and why/when? Or, if you play DE, what's your preference and why?

The correct answer, is Blackguard are the best for reasons I stated above.  However, in your army, with a heavy dose of Corsairs to chop up infantry, you don't need to spend points on Special anti-infantry units.  Spend your points on a large Cold One Knights unit  The Knights will do what your Corsairs can't, namely deliver a crushing hard blow quickly, and have a 2+ save to give them resiliency.  No one will be focused on your large SSS Corsair unit when 25 Knights are breathing down on them, believe me.  And they don't need a CoB to be good either, which fits your budget requirement.

Now that the correct answer is given, let's see what the driveling fools have to say...

CaliforniaGamer: Executioners are spectacular in 8th ed. By the far the best infantry special choice for DE in 8th. 

I'm sure you'll back up this completely incorrect statement with some logic or mathhammer at least, right?

Do the math on horde attacks str6 w/KB. A unit of 40 is key, backed by a cauldron bsb. Much much better than the capped blackguard who are only getting 1 supporting attack.

Do the math on how many points that costs.  A unit of 40 with a CoB BSB is about 800 points.  Any 800 point unit is better than a 300 point unit.  I should hope so, anyway.  You're fucking dumb.
Hashrat: I would take the bsb in the excecutioners unit with the asf banner.

So then I kill your unarmored, defenseless Hag BSB with basically anything, and suddenly your deathstar sucks.  Your advice sucks, and you suck.

Shimmergloom: I could see a unit of 40 [Executioners] being great if you didn't want any other specials in a 2k game(you can't even afford a full command and keep it under 500pts.).

So what you're saying is, "I could see that unit being great if you want to completely neuter the rest of your army and have a terrible force."

I feel almost bad enough for this noob to post in the thread warning him not to buy Executioners until the next army book.  Almost.  Much like a nature documentary, you have to be an impartial witness to what you see around you.  The Circle of Life, and all.


  1. Essentially, most elite infantry with only 1 attack in their profile, suck.

    And they stay sucky unless they have some ridiculous special rule or are dirt cheap (or both).

  2. It's so true. People want Executioners to be awesome so badly since the models are so cool looking. They just aren't. It's such an easy fix, too. FAQ them to be able to carry a 35 point magic banner and they can have ASF and be a good unit.

    Or have a special rule like...

    Draitch Masters: So skilled are Executioners with using their draitch blades, that they do not suffer the effects of Always Strikes Last.

    I'd trade away killing blow for that. Then I'd have a badass triple COB triple Executioner 'Ard Boyz list posted in about 10 seconds.

  3. Then again Dark Elves don't need elite infantry to curb stomp you. They function just as well with just a few shades and a crap load of xbowmen.

    WHFB army books can be very static when it comes to composition. The non-point efficient ones will always be overlooked for the better ones.

    At least Dark Elves are blessed to have strong core choices and that is what matters in 8th Ed. Some armies (like Empire) have crap cores that do nothing but stand around and wait to be mowed down. xD

  4. While unrelated to your post, it is related to internet stupidity.

    Basically, I'm referring to the overwhelming amount of dumb at http://www.belloflostsouls.net/2011/02/40k-black-templars-faq-what-happened.html

    It reminds me why I stay away from BoLS, so keep up the good fight. I've got myself a pounding headache after reading all of that crap in the comments. Enough for me to need pain killer.

  5. Marshal Laeroth, stick around this morning for today's article here ;)

  6. truthfully, if you feel desperate to field a smaller executioner unit you're gonna have to include an assassin, just to do some casualties to the enemy unit before they strike back. But then again, this unit will be costing you 300-400 points and really it'll be the assassin doing most of the work.
    I'm like most DE players, I've got the executioner units because I love painting the models, but they hardly ever find their way into my lists

  7. Fantastic post, you're my hero of the day.