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 Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?

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Demantiae
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PostSubject: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Wed Jun 22, 2016 9:30 am

Are Void Ravens viable using the Blackheart Talon formation? Razorwings are already one of the stronger elements of the Deldar list (getting arguably stronger with the changes to the air game) so leveraging them seems like a no-brainer if you like using fliers. But what about the Void Raven. It's acknowledged to be an overpriced unit but it's one that carries two tools unavailable elsewhere - STR 9 lances and a STR 9 pie plate. Previous to the changes to aircraft these tools weren't good enough to justify the points sink but what about now?

Taken as a wing 2 Razorwings and 2 Void Ravens can form up into an attack pattern that confers significant benefits to the Void Raven. The turn this wing arrives you can devastate key targets with a ton of missiles. They're not cheap but having 4 fliers unleash all theirs missiles at once is going to do some serious damage. You want to fire them off because this formation is gonna take some serious return fire. The turn after they arrive the attack pattern bonus' kick in. Now your 2 void bombs are ignoring cover and rerolling for pens on any vehicle they hit. You can catch a lot of units in those blasts. On top of that the lead bomber is getting +1 STR to his bomb. That's a vindicator blast that ignores cover and gets to reroll if you fail to pen. Assuming you don't get unlucky scatters you can make short work of most things unfortunate enough to be under those templates.

After they've done their bombing run you have a preferred enemy unit you can focus on bringing down. Those void lances are gonna be hitting a lot with PE. Chose a nasty unit for the PE and hit it with 4 STR 9 shots that are very likely to hit each turn. If you're lucky your wingleader will roll +1 BS too meaning he's very unlikely to miss any shots.

If you can ensure other elements of your army can deal with skyfire units then this formation should have complete control of the skies. The 2 Razorwings with interceptor should be able to deal with enemy fliers just fine.

And then you have Eldar and their skimmers. Skimmers can't jink those bombs. You can wipe out swathes of jetbikes if they're clumped together and you can reliably damage eldar vehicles. The Razorwings get ignore cover and tank hunters when they fire at skimmers (which count as air targets). That's 4 lance shots into a skimmer that can't jink.

The reserves manipulation aspect of the new air phase doesn't seem to be worth much. You're not likely to kill enemy fliers in dogfighting and you only get the bonus when you're fliers are in reserve anyway so it's a turn 2 or maybe 3 bonus at best in the most ideal of scenario's, unless you're opponent took no fliers at all.

What do people think? Having a chunk of your army that is difficult to hit (massive skyfire nerfs to almost all factions but DE) seems favourable. Sure bolters can down your planes but if your opponent is pouring bolters into your fliers then they're not pouring them into your scourge or venoms. Is this formation the new DE distraction carnifex? It seems that DE came away winners from the flier changes, should that be leveraged?

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Wed Jun 22, 2016 10:36 am

I'm not quite sure about all the changes from death from the sky and now there's an additional book. I think I won't incorporate those changes in the near future.

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Wed Jun 22, 2016 10:47 am

From what I've seen the dogfighting is pretty dumb. No skill involved and has only an occasional impact on either sides fliers, but at least it looks quick and not likely to occur too often in a game (maybe 2-3 times tops in a given match).

The changes to skyfire make Razorwings instantly more survivable as so few of the faction fliers are actually fighters. Sure they die to lucky bolter fire but they always suffered that. Now you need a lucky lascanon shot to take them down too. And as the Razorwing was already one of the better fliers in the game it seems to have given the DE an edge over the other factions fliers.

The stacking bonus' to bombers bomb weapons means that Void Ravens are worth a look now if you can deliver them safely to your target. Would love to see what the other Archons think about this.

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Wed Jun 22, 2016 11:34 am

One downside with the new flyer rules, if I remind correctly, is that fighters haves maluses when shooting ground unit, losing a little bit of usefulness, because it's main role was infantry bombing, with missiles.

But globally, the new rules seems to be an overall bonus for us.
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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Wed Jun 22, 2016 12:55 pm

Fighter suffer -1 BS shooting ground targets. I think they have to also choose to take skyfire to not snapfire at air targets. However I'm unclear whether them taking skyfire is optional each turn or a one time switch. If the skyfire is permanent after selecting it then yes Razorwings are hit hard, if it's a choice each turn then they're fine. The -1 BS won't hurt too much on missiles and will only slightly effect them on their lance shots, but lances aren't reliable anyway so you won't lose too much impact there. They do however shoot at skimmers and jetbikes at full BS which is nice vs some of the tougher armies out there.

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Thu Jun 23, 2016 5:57 am

Page 59 of Death From The Skies (2016):   Zooming Flyers with the Fighter Combat Role can choose whether or not to enter Skyfire mode at the start of each Shooting phase.

There is also supposedly a discrepancy where the digital version includes the attack fighter combat role in with the above rule... still waiting on clarification there.

In general though, the razorwing is worse off since it's role was to shoot at ground targets and it now does so at -1 bs.   It's true that it won't matter very much with large blasts, but those are finite.  In exchange for the penalty it gets to dog fight... in a mediocre fashion.  

Being able to field flyers a la carte is nice though - as are break turns and some of the formation bonuses.

I don't see such a large flyer formation being viable for the dark eldar as you'll be dedicating 1/3 to 1/2 of your points on units that can't ever score.  The air superiority formation may be a bit more practical, but will unfortunately benefit other armies more (transports in this formation get obj sec).
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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Thu Jun 23, 2016 11:58 am

It's hard to say, if the whole book is being used then most flyers will lose skyfire thus making ours more survivable, however ITC and others are currently voting on modified death from the skies with other flyers just getting -1 bs at flyers (meaning we get a nerf with the -1bs to ground targets for razorwings and they can still kill our flyers with ease).

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Thu Jun 23, 2016 12:09 pm

@Seshiru wrote:
It's hard to say, if the whole book is being used then most flyers will lose skyfire thus making ours more survivable, however ITC and others are currently voting on modified death from the skies with other flyers just getting -1 bs at flyers (meaning we get a nerf with the -1bs to ground targets for razorwings and they can still kill our flyers with ease).

I think they're also voting on whether to use DftS at all and, if they do, whether to include the dogfight phase.

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Thu Jun 23, 2016 2:03 pm

I don't see dedicating a large number of points to this as a problem if you're facing something like a knight or superheavy. PE on something so large and dangerous mostly makes up for the razorwing's -1 BS. Outside of launching it's missiles a razorwing has few roles. With dissie's and splinter canons it could have been used to kill infantry but nobody did that, you took the lances and you tried to bring down dangerous vehicles. You can still do that, you just declare the most dangerous thing to be your PE and go to town. If your opponent has air cover then you should be focusing on taking that down anyway rather than ground targets that other units can deal with.

VS Eldar that -1 BS goes out the window anyway because skimmers and jetbikes are air targets and thus exempt from the -1 BS shooting. Razorwings can shoot at eldar vehicles without penalty.

I'd like to see this formation used in a couple batreps or reports to see if it has any value.

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Sun Jun 26, 2016 5:23 pm

@Demantiae wrote:
Are Void Ravens viable using the Blackheart Talon formation? Razorwings are already one of the stronger elements of the Deldar list (getting arguably stronger with the changes to the air game) so leveraging them seems like a no-brainer if you like using fliers. But what about the Void Raven. It's acknowledged to be an overpriced unit but it's one that carries two tools unavailable elsewhere - STR 9 lances and a STR 9 pie plate. Previous to the changes to aircraft these tools weren't good enough to justify the points sink but what about now?

Taken as a wing 2 Razorwings and 2 Void Ravens can form up into an attack pattern that confers significant benefits to the Void Raven. The turn this wing arrives you can devastate key targets with a ton of missiles. They're not cheap but having 4 fliers unleash all theirs missiles at once is going to do some serious damage. You want to fire them off because this formation is gonna take some serious return fire. The turn after they arrive the attack pattern bonus' kick in. Now your 2 void bombs are ignoring cover and rerolling for pens on any vehicle they hit. You can catch a lot of units in those blasts. On top of that the lead bomber is getting +1 STR to his bomb. That's a vindicator blast that ignores cover and gets to reroll if you fail to pen. Assuming you don't get unlucky scatters you can make short work of most things unfortunate enough to be under those templates.

After they've done their bombing run you have a preferred enemy unit you can focus on bringing down. Those void lances are gonna be hitting a lot with PE. Chose a nasty unit for the PE and hit it with 4 STR 9 shots that are very likely to hit each turn. If you're lucky your wingleader will roll +1 BS too meaning he's very unlikely to miss any shots.

If you can ensure other elements of your army can deal with skyfire units then this formation should have complete control of the skies. The 2 Razorwings with interceptor should be able to deal with enemy fliers just fine.

And then you have Eldar and their skimmers. Skimmers can't jink those bombs. You can wipe out swathes of jetbikes if they're clumped together and you can reliably damage eldar vehicles. The Razorwings get ignore cover and tank hunters when they fire at skimmers (which count as air targets). That's 4 lance shots into a skimmer that can't jink.

What do people think? Having a chunk of your army that is difficult to hit (massive skyfire nerfs to almost all factions but DE) seems favourable. Sure bolters can down your planes but if your opponent is pouring bolters into your fliers then they're not pouring them into your scourge or venoms. Is this formation the new DE distraction carnifex? It seems that DE came away winners from the flier changes, should that be leveraged?

I think the idea of fielding the voidraven and the Razorwing both seem to be underestimated.

I can see why some see 600 pts as a big chunk of the army. Still, the same cost applies to the widely used Corpsethief Claw formation. And that for a unit that moves 6" a turn! To compare two units on paper is one thing. Seeing what they do in play is another. They can both carry out anti-vehicle/aircraft tasks and punish enemy infantry. Their missiles have de facto the longest range in the faction. They move up to 48". Using this offensively will let your armada advance.

An AP2 str9 pie seems a bit tasty. Also note that it has the lance rule.


Last edited by Hellraiser on Sun Jun 26, 2016 7:05 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Sun Jun 26, 2016 6:05 pm

@Demantiae wrote:
With dissie's and splinter canons it could have been used to kill infantry but nobody did that, you took the lances and you tried to bring down dangerous vehicles.

I've actually seen the opposite here, where people SPECIFICALLY did that. They had missiles, dissies, and splinter cannon.

That was the preferred loadout for razorwing jetfighters. Turn 1, you crack their transports with your ravagers and other AT, turn 2 your jetfighters arrive and unleash holy hell upon enemy infantry.

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Sun Jun 26, 2016 7:12 pm

@Hellraiser wrote:
@Demantiae wrote:
Are Void Ravens viable using the Blackheart Talon formation? Razorwings are already one of the stronger elements of the Deldar list (getting arguably stronger with the changes to the air game) so leveraging them seems like a no-brainer if you like using fliers. But what about the Void Raven. It's acknowledged to be an overpriced unit but it's one that carries two tools unavailable elsewhere - STR 9 lances and a STR 9 pie plate. Previous to the changes to aircraft these tools weren't good enough to justify the points sink but what about now?

Taken as a wing 2 Razorwings and 2 Void Ravens can form up into an attack pattern that confers significant benefits to the Void Raven. The turn this wing arrives you can devastate key targets with a ton of missiles. They're not cheap but having 4 fliers unleash all theirs missiles at once is going to do some serious damage. You want to fire them off because this formation is gonna take some serious return fire. The turn after they arrive the attack pattern bonus' kick in. Now your 2 void bombs are ignoring cover and rerolling for pens on any vehicle they hit. You can catch a lot of units in those blasts. On top of that the lead bomber is getting +1 STR to his bomb. That's a vindicator blast that ignores cover and gets to reroll if you fail to pen. Assuming you don't get unlucky scatters you can make short work of most things unfortunate enough to be under those templates.

After they've done their bombing run you have a preferred enemy unit you can focus on bringing down. Those void lances are gonna be hitting a lot with PE. Chose a nasty unit for the PE and hit it with 4 STR 9 shots that are very likely to hit each turn. If you're lucky your wingleader will roll +1 BS too meaning he's very unlikely to miss any shots.

If you can ensure other elements of your army can deal with skyfire units then this formation should have complete control of the skies. The 2 Razorwings with interceptor should be able to deal with enemy fliers just fine.

And then you have Eldar and their skimmers. Skimmers can't jink those bombs. You can wipe out swathes of jetbikes if they're clumped together and you can reliably damage eldar vehicles. The Razorwings get ignore cover and tank hunters when they fire at skimmers (which count as air targets). That's 4 lance shots into a skimmer that can't jink.

What do people think? Having a chunk of your army that is difficult to hit (massive skyfire nerfs to almost all factions but DE) seems favourable. Sure bolters can down your planes but if your opponent is pouring bolters into your fliers then they're not pouring them into your scourge or venoms. Is this formation the new DE distraction carnifex? It seems that DE came away winners from the flier changes, should that be leveraged?

I think the idea of fielding the voidraven and the Razorwing both seem to be underestimated.

I can see why some see 600 pts as a big chunk of the army. Still, the same cost applies to the widely used Corpsethief Claw formation. And that for a unit that moves 6" a turn! To compare two units on paper is one thing. Seeing what they do in play is another. They can both carry out anti-vehicle/aircraft tasks and punish enemy infantry. Their missiles have de facto the longest range in the faction. They move up to 48". Using this offensively will let your armada advance.

An AP2 str9 pie seems a bit tasty. Also note that the void mine is lance.

The CTC is on the table turn one though. While the flyers won't be on the table before turn 2 at best. You can't rely on air superiority for reserve manipulation so it seems like a pretty big risk.
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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Mon Jun 27, 2016 6:04 am

@BetrayTheWorld wrote:
@Demantiae wrote:
With dissie's and splinter canons it could have been used to kill infantry but nobody did that, you took the lances and you tried to bring down dangerous vehicles.

I've actually seen the opposite here, where people SPECIFICALLY did that. They had missiles, dissies, and splinter cannon.

That was the preferred loadout for razorwing jetfighters. Turn 1, you crack their transports with your ravagers and other AT, turn 2 your jetfighters arrive and unleash holy hell upon enemy infantry.

I run my RW with dissies, never had much luck with the lances.
I get much more bang from dissies. Cool

I'm not convinced on the Flyer formation... I'd definitely take the CTC if I had to choose between the 2.
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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Mon Jun 27, 2016 10:07 am

I feel like we are kind of disregarding the new flier rules simply because no one wants to buy that book for do little rules. I think I might just have to bite the bullet because I should be all over anything new to try with the true kin.

As for reserves, an allied Autarch does not have any trouble fitting into most of my lists.

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Mon Jun 27, 2016 1:20 pm

It's true, I don't want to buy a book for rules that barely change the game, in ways that are arguably worse than they are without using said changes.

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Mon Jun 27, 2016 5:32 pm

These aren't optional changes though. You can't tell your opponent he can't make a break turn just because you don't like it.

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Mon Jun 27, 2016 5:35 pm

@The Red King wrote:
These aren't optional changes though.  You can't tell your opponent he can't make a break turn just because you don't like it.

Depends on the format you're playing. House rules aren't optional either. The game breaks without them. Many formats won't use the death from the skies rules.

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Mon Jun 27, 2016 5:37 pm

But the fact it isn't being used will never be up to one individuals opinion. It's an official book.

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Mon Jun 27, 2016 6:36 pm

But we're not talking about one individual's opinion. At least I'm not. You may want to single out my personal opinion for debate or something, but that's not possible. We are legion. Wink

It's already established that many share my opinion on those "official" changes. Now it's only a matter of time till we find out if that opinion is in the minority or majority, as it's currently being voted on in the ITC. Were I to find out that all the formats I play in have adopted those rules with open arms, I'd go buy the book, no questions asked. But I'm not going to buy the book with just a few rules I don't like anyhow, that likely won't be used in games I play anyhow. I will wait and see.

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Tue Jun 28, 2016 9:26 am

For this most excuisit subject, I decided to field the Razorwing in my latest battle report. Moving at  48" a turn is fun. You can fire several missiles at enemy units, good if you like nuking the living hell out of people.

There is also an aspect of terror-gaming to it. Your opponent will try to guess it's next move, avoiding bombardment.


Last edited by Hellraiser on Tue Jun 28, 2016 6:36 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Tue Jun 28, 2016 1:19 pm

Razorwings don't have the ability to drob bombs. FYI.

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Tue Jun 28, 2016 2:00 pm

We both know they mean missiles. PLEASE, PLEASE, mean missiles. I get that rando internet dweller may not tho.

That said ITC says No. I'd imagine this book will not really matter until it's content get's rolled into 8th edition and made a required part of the game like super heavies and LOW.
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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Tue Jun 28, 2016 3:36 pm

@amorrowlyday wrote:
We both know they mean missiles. PLEASE, PLEASE, mean missiles.

The way he worded it, it sounds like he thinks he can drop missiles on people using the bombing run rules.

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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Thu Jun 30, 2016 8:16 pm

I've played about five games using the formation. It is quite fun and has had great success. That said, it is rock/paper/scissors

One game, air superiority didn't work and the fliers didn't arrive until turn 4. That hurt a lot.

The Preferred Enemy is amazing and neutralizes a lot of negatives on the fliers. With that much investment in missiles, I found spending the extra 20 points for the AP missiles was worthwhile. The flexibility on the attack patterns helps against multiple armies as well. For example, a 4++ and IWND against a Tau interceptor line is fantastic. It provides flexibility.

That said, I have never used the attack patterns on the turn they arrive. After that, the fliers seem to be in better position separately.

It probably isn't worth 1/3 of an army if you're headed to a 50+ person tournament and you want to be on the top table, but my personal performance with DE has increased using the fliers in the book.

The extra 90 degree turn is awesome.
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PostSubject: Re: Blackheart Talon Air Wing Viable?   Mon Jul 11, 2016 3:28 am

Break turns are an amazing addition to the Razorwing's capabilities.
I've use my 2 Razors (with lances and stock missiles) in a number of games since DftS dropped. And I'm 100% pleased with their performance.
Break turns are AMAZING.

Haven't managed to try this formation yet because I don't own voidravens, but am looking at picking up a 3rd DE flyer tomorrow.

As for those who say air superiority isn't reliable for reserve modification; nobody else in my meta uses flyers. Nobody in my friends' metas use flyers. Not many batreps I've seen include flyers.
But if you do run into them, it's already beneficial to take 2nd turn (which null deploy does well) so you can shoot your enemy flyers after they're on the table; if the enemy flyers arrive in their turn, you now have air superiority, and as mentioned above Razors are currently near the top of the dogfighting stack right now so they can help you put the hurt on anything else in the sky to begin with.

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