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 How to counter the psychic phase?

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LidlessEye
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PostSubject: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sat Feb 25 2017, 18:07

I play against some folks with fairly psyker-heavy armies, and with the True Kin being psychically-neuter as they are, it's like my opponent gets a nearly unopposed bonus phase each turn. Any good tactics for dealing with psykers and/or taking some sting out of the psychic phase?
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The Red King
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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sat Feb 25 2017, 22:04

Well assuming you don't want to resort to cwe, harlequin shadowseers are a much fluffier choice and have access to an adamantium will bubble via an artifact if I'm not mistaken.

Stick her in with an important squad and they will deny on a 4+, while your surrounding units deny on a 5.

Without any allies you don't really have much choice. The helm of spite is workable.

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Massaen
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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sat Feb 25 2017, 22:22

Consider the fact that the opponent is spending all those points on a highly unreliable phase of the game - but you are spending it on guns and blades.

Personally, I have never had a huge issue with the opposing phase.

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chickendinner
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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sat Feb 25 2017, 22:35

I'd love to hear how experienced players deal with enemy psykers, it's something I don't consider myself good at.

I try to keep my dice for enemy witchfires, and let them buff their units as they like. Depending on what buffs go off, I just keep in mind what unit has what when deciding what to shoot/assault.

One good example is invisibility; sometimes you can just ignore the invisible unit until they fail to cast it, and when they do focus a turn of shooting on the unit.

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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sat Feb 25 2017, 23:11

I do think they're missing a slight trick by not having some sort of Covens unit that's made from chopped up bits of Blanks. Say, provides a 12" null aura and has some bits of kit that specifically hurt psykers.

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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 01:23

I agree that GW should make something like that, but in the meantime there is nothing (but maybe comp limits) stopping someone from converting some esoteric or grotesque conversion of a culexus assassin. Either of flesh bits or a tortured spirit made from some of the fantasy ghosts, or even a special mandrake... in fact I think I just got a project.

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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 02:16

@Massaen The phase may be unreliable to an extent, but they still essentially get two rounds of shooting in many cases.
@RedKing Harlies are definitely something I've thought about, but they're tricky to work into a battleforged force. Good formation suggestions? I've taken the Heroes Path a few times, and in that one the shadowseer is forced to run solo. Not super effective as an answer to this issue.

Anything we can.do tactically (i.e. not just allies/unit selection) to hurt psyker-heavy lists? What are our advantages (I hope there are some) that can blunt psykers?
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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 02:51

Path of Heroes + Cast of Players, in cast of Players take Inriam Spectre for shrouded. That will give you 2 mastery level 2 psykers and enough assassination power to kill pesky psykers. Take Mask of Secrets - get close and do the psychic shriek.

Also you counter enemy psykers by killing them. If all else fails, try this.

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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 03:07

A) Allies. We have access to the best psykers as Battle Brothers, so even a small number of them can have huge benefits.

B) Target saturation. We can do MSU pretty damn well, and with so many things spread out to hit, it's hard even for a psyker to deal with that much threat.

C) Knowledge. Consider in each case: what do these psykers do? How will it affect me? If they are buffing themselves, can I use my superior mobility to just ignore them? If they are attacking me, can I keep valuable targets away from them and only allow them the range to hit cheap, insignificant targets? If they are buffing allied units, can I focus fire on the psykers to remove the force multiplier effect? Different psykers require different strategies, and the most effective way to fight them is to know what you're up against and the appropriate response.

Hope that helps.
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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 03:21

LidlessEye wrote:
@Massaen The phase may be unreliable to an extent, but they still essentially get two rounds of shooting in many cases.

Most witch fires don't reach out past the 18-24 range bracket and they still need LoS and so on.

Besides, it's not witch fires that worry me - it's blessings

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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 06:30

@Jimsolo Yea, C) is huge. I guess I'll have to spend a little more time looking over my mates' power cards before the next round.
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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 07:35

With regard to the psykic phase, we do have some options.

-With the new Gathering Storm 2 suppliment (campaign?) we can now take Harlie units in a formation with DE. So this is easy access to Shadowseers.

-We have a few pieces of equipment to help against psykers. Healm of Spite, The Laughing Gods Eye (Harlie Artifact)

-The best weapon against them though is MSU strategy. Have so many units costing 150 pts or less, that it doesnt matter if they kill a few. Wychfire abilities shouldent be much of a concern between their unreliability and our small point value. The real concern is for blessings on their deathstar units. Just know what the enemy has, and try to deny the most valuable abilities.

Target priority is a must when playing DE. In the movement phase (for getting objectives), shooting phase, in the assault phase, and in the psykic phase.
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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 08:10

If you are willing to use allies and the new gathering storm book a single seer council will give you dominance of the psychic phase with minimal investment.

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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 09:45

I had a game against Space Wolves recently, and he brought some psyker formation with Njall Stormcaller. They got this power which was something like S7 AP? assault D6x number of psykers left alive. He had five of them spread throughout his army, and every turn he pointed at something within 24" of one of his psykers and essentially just deleted it (plus, some special rule meant 6s to hit add to more hits). Combined with the warp charges, re-rolls and harnessing on 3s it was pretty disheartening.

This was against my Harlequins BTW, so I only had five major units to speak of, and by prioritizing he essentially removed over half my army without much of a wimper (Solitaire + 2 Troupes).

All this to say that sometimes all you can do is sit by and watch, while taking comfort in knowing that he spent 500pts on the formation so you can go on and win the game (with three models left I might add).
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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 10:58

chickendinner wrote:

All this to say that sometimes all you can do is sit by and watch, while taking comfort in knowing that he spent 500pts on the formation so you can go on and win the game (with three models left I might add).

In my first ever major, national level grand tournament, I lost to a DE player when our match got called due to time in turn 4, when he had 2 reaver models(1 unit) and 3 kabalite warriors(1 unit) left on the table, because he scored more maelstrom points than I did through the course of the game. I had roughly 90% of my army still intact.

Of course, if we would have completed the entire game to it's natural conclusion, he would have lost, but that's not what matters at a tournament. I learned a valuable lesson that day.

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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 12:53

BetrayTheWorld wrote:
chickendinner wrote:

All this to say that sometimes all you can do is sit by and watch, while taking comfort in knowing that he spent 500pts on the formation so you can go on and win the game (with three models left I might add).

In my first ever major, national level grand tournament, I lost to a DE player when our match got called due to time in turn 4, when he had 2 reaver models(1 unit) and 3 kabalite warriors(1 unit) left on the table, because he scored more maelstrom points than I did through the course of the game. I had roughly 90% of my army still intact.

Of course, if we would have completed the entire game to it's natural conclusion, he would have lost, but that's not what matters at a tournament. I learned a valuable lesson that day.

yeah this, tournaments are a COMPLETELY different monster.

But in normal play games, SM, Eldar and Chaos if played right, the psychic phase is their MOST important phase. With Buffs and Debuffs, it can win you the game easier than extra units with shooting.

I lost a tournament game b.c a player misfortune my knight and just shot me with about 16-17 SM's and rend me to death at the same time he Forewarning a unit on the objective I had to get him off of. 4++ doesnt sound like a lot (I play Harlequins) but when I relay on AP2 to kill and now my 4-5 AP2 only killed 1 instead of 4 that makes a large different.

I've won many games also b.c of powers, having a Shadoweer sitting on a point and casting Veil so he cant be shot at by 3 Landspeeders with ML's its very funny.

Psychic Powers are Multipliers where additional units is just additive.

yes they are random but you either take few pyskers for the Primaris or you take enough to make sure you make it work.

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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 14:26

amishprn86 wrote:
SM, Eldar and Chaos if played right, the psychic phase is their MOST important phase. With Buffs and Debuffs, it can win you the game easier than extra units with shooting.

I would generally agree with this, with the emphasis on "played right". The psychic phase is the most mentally taxing phase, and is easy to screw up. I'd say this is true for most tournament games as well.

But if you're good with designing psyker lists and using them, there are very few things in the game that are scary to you. I was never even worried about drop podded Culexus assassins, when they were allowed to be used(though I feigned a sort of concern so that my opponents didn't feel entirely impotent.)

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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 14:30

LidlessEye wrote:
I play against some folks with fairly psyker-heavy armies, and with the True Kin being psychically-neuter as they are, it's like my opponent gets a nearly unopposed bonus phase each turn. Any good tactics for dealing with psykers and/or taking some sting out of the psychic phase?

You throw dice at it and it goes away. Alternatively deep strike a unit with the Helm of Spite. Alternatively kill the psykers first. Alternatively Ally in psykers of your own. My personal favorite is 2 Psykana Divisions.

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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 14:53

BetrayTheWorld wrote:
amishprn86 wrote:
SM, Eldar and Chaos if played right, the psychic phase is their MOST important phase. With Buffs and Debuffs, it can win you the game easier than extra units with shooting.

I would generally agree with this, with the emphasis on "played right". The psychic phase is the most mentally taxing phase, and is easy to screw up. I'd say this is true for most tournament games as well.

But if you're good with designing psyker lists and using them, there are very few things in the game that are scary to you. I was never even worried about drop podded Culexus assassins, when they were allowed to be used(though I feigned a sort of concern so that my opponents didn't feel entirely impotent.)


I'm not to good at it so i dont play the psychic game, i take a couple for the primaris only.

I have a friend that just makes it work everytime (he uses seer conceals and farseers so he is spending 500pts if not more every game on them) and it just does work.

It does take the right mindset or lots of practice.

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BetrayTheWorld
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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 15:04

amishprn86 wrote:

I have a friend that just makes it work everytime (he uses seer conceals and farseers so he is spending 500pts if not more every game on them) and it just does work.

Yeah, I'm in the same boat as your friend. I rarely spend less than 500 points on characters.

amishprn86 wrote:
It does take the right mindset or lots of practice.

Indeed, but when you have both, they can be brutal, borderline unfair.

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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 17:34

faced a tzeentch list with 13 warp charges this week. he got 2 good turns blessing himself and shrieking, then just fell apart from weight of attacks. I felt how DE are useless in the Psychic phase and how psyker armies can tailor against you when choosing spells. But ultimately he just didnt have the numbers to deal with mine
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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Sun Feb 26 2017, 21:29

How is a council and farseer hard to use or mentally taxing?

They are very powerful and resilient and therefore a very popular choice. scratch
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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Mon Feb 27 2017, 01:49

A seer council has between eight and seventeen powers to keep track of, prioritize, and use.  It's definitely something that requires some concentration and mental agility to juggle each turn.
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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Mon Feb 27 2017, 03:49

@Jimsolo nailed it. When you have that many powers from the council, plus any supplemental characters to the council, with lots of witchfires that have a variable chance of failure depending on what you're targeting, and you don't have a limit to the number of different units you can target with your witchfires and maledictions, it's a lot of information to process, and one can easily make the wrong decision.

If you're playing a defensive jetseer council that goes for invisibility, 2+ armour saves, and rerolls with psychic shriek and singing spear offense, there is much less to think about, but also much less that they can do. This is the standard way most people play seer councils, and I think this is one of the weakest ways to play them because it makes ignoring them a pretty valid and attractive option.

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PostSubject: Re: How to counter the psychic phase?   Mon Feb 27 2017, 05:03

They're not hard to use don't let these guys bamboozle you. I picked up how to run a ghetto seer council from just goofing around with dice. What you roll entirely determines their abilities. Always shoot for Fortune first, and after that Invisibility, and after that Misfortune. Try to have some redundancy. Like Prescience and Guide or Misfortune and Doom, that way you can get your opponent to blow their denial load on one and get the next one off no problem. The key to psychic phase is tricking your opponent into thinking they have a choice as to what they deny. One turn, don't cast invisibility. Let them hold all their dice waiting for it. Or cast it first and let them blow all their dice on it. This works against even good players.
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