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 Generalized Advice from Dash

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Xelkireth
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PostSubject: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSat May 28 2011, 07:03

This is a re-posting by Dashofpepper. Please do not repeat the antics of Dakka in this thread. We as a community are above such childish banter.

NOTE: Original post has been edited for continuity, spelling and grammar. Not all grammatical errors have been fixed.

…Welcome most certainly to Dark Eldar, and most of all, welcome to the idea of experimenting with competitive play. I'm about to write a lot of stuff, and I'll do my best to explain everything in the same terms that you've used. I also want to offer this disclaimer: I do have a huge ego. On the tournament circuit, I'm 56 wins and 2 losses with my Dark Eldar. They've been from California to Washington D.C. to Florida to Texas and most of the places in between playing against the best players I've been able to find anywhere. I've made friends, I've made enemies, some of them here on Dakka. I generally don't give advice to people on Dark Eldar. There are too many people offering what I consider to be useless advice, and I don't feel like spending my days arguing against what I consider to be stupid ideas. So I generally entertain general questions, occasional PMs, and shy away from discussing this stuff.

My point: I'm going to tell you what I think is good and what I think is bad. I have no doubt that some people are going to respond with bruised egos because I think their ideas are useless. I'm not diming anyone in particular out, just speaking from experience. I don't plan on sticking around to hash out, argue and name-call, resulting in a locked thread (that crap happens far too often with me). So I've put my laurels on the line, take them for what they are. I'm going to make my points, try helping you the best I can, but I won't be returning to defend my position against detractors - I get suspended often enough for telling stupid people to stop being stupid.

With all that said:

General Philosophy:
1. Dark Eldar are a glass cannon. They're meant to strike hard, strike fast, but don't have the tools to withstand return fire / counter assaults. So they're an extremely powerful army, but very unforgiving.

2. Every model in a Dark Eldar army should have a purpose, and ablative wounds should NEVER be one of them. A unit of 5 warriors is meant to hold an objective. 5 warriors is also the minimum squad size. Six warriors are not better than five warriors, nor are seven warriors better than five warriors. Every additional model and expenditure of points that you put into something that is not created, honed, and visualized to kill something is a waste of points. I'll get back to this with your warrior squads in particular later.

3. Heat Lances: You're not missing anything. In the old codex, reavers had a better save, could take more special weapons (3 reavers with two blasters)...and were *still* borderline not worth using. They were a filler unit to bring a distraction unit to the table to turbo-boost up the side of the table and maybe snipe out a tank as a distraction, or to turbo-boost around the table near the end of the game to annoy and contest objectives. Reavers are even worse in the new codex. They're weaker, require double the unit size to get the same number of weapons, and the single weapon that would make them interesting is just as you called it - too dangerous and expensive to competitively consider. There's an alternative methods of heat lance delivery, but none of them do it effectively or efficiently when comparing to other means of disposing of tanks in your arsenal.

4. Versatility: I firmly believe that every unit in a Dark Eldar army should, if at all possible, have a dual role. 5 warriors with a single blaster inside a venom with dual splinter cannons is a great example. That's a transport killer. It’s a land raider killer. And it’s *also* effective (both the unit inside and vehicle) against every variety of infantry from MEQs to GEQs to terminators to Monstrous Creatures to Star Gods. You can't do much about creating dual purpose roles for Ravagers - they're lances. They shoot vehicles until there are no more (or MCs if there are no vehicles), then start sniping at ICs, terminators, etc.

5. Reliance on Vehicles: This is *not* a weakness, it is a strength. Lances are 36", Splinter Cannons are 36", and ultimately, blasters are 18" weapons that can be fired after a 12" move and a 2" disembarkation, making them effectively a 33" weapon. You outrange pretty much everything except for missiles, autocannons, and railguns when you consider mobility as part of your firepower. Yes...bolters can theoretically pop a raider. But all of your weapons outrange bolters. And since you have flickerfields, you literally have 33% more vehicles than you paid for.

6. Open-topped: Don't worry about it. When an open-topped vehicle explodes, it’s a STR3 hit on the passengers, or 4+ to wound your models....and that's what you have required minimum sized units for. 5 warriors with a blaster means 4 models die before you have to worry about losing its best weapon. Haemonculi make wyches get Feel No Pain, making them great raider companions. More on this later again.

Your List:
1. Baron Sathonyx is a great HQ choice. I love him for the +1 to go first if nothing else. It wins me the roll to go first quite often. You're not sure where to put him - the obvious answer is that since he's jump infantry and can't be embarked, put him with the only unit that you have on foot: Your beasts. You can freely move him about in the movement phase - whether an IC is attached to a unit or not is dictated by their respective positioning to the unit at the beginning and at the end of the phase - which means that you can move the Baron around and through the unit to get him where you want him (away from potential threats, towards threats, etc). On the plus side, he has the HUGE advantage of giving the beasts +1 cover, and even MORE huge....offensive and defensive grenades. The only downside is that he's not cavalry and doesn't have the same 12" charge that the beasts do. You always move at the speed of the slowest model...so where the beasts would assault 2d6, pick the highest x2, the Baron (being an IC) gets 3d6. So your assault range with the Baron attached is 3d6, pick the highest. You've got a pretty good chance of getting 5-6" of assault range. And if you're not going to be able to get the Baron and friends into an assault (something you'll learn to eyeball with practice), you can detach the Baron and send him either into cover, away from threats, or to go pick on something (probably a vehicle) by himself. And if you can't get into assault.....well, you can sit in cover with a 3+ cover save and defensive grenades. The Baron and Khymerae are I6 and the Razorwings are I5, so you'll probably still be going first (or simultaneously).

2. Your beast unit is illegal. Each beastmaster (0-4) can take 0-5 Khymerae, 0-2 Razorwing Flocks, or 0-1 Clawed Fiend. You'll have to add one more Beastmaster to get 5 Khymerae and 4 Razorwing Flocks. You should do it though. With the Baron along to give them grenades and stealth, these guys are fearsome. And with rending 6 attacks on the charge per model for razorwings, you can pop vehicles too! =D

3. Ravagers: Presuming that your entry (Ravager with Flickerfield filled to brim with DLs. 3x) means that you have three units of triple lance ravagers, and not one ravager with 3 dark lances, you're on the right track. I firmly believe that *every* competitive Dark Eldar list should start with three triple lance ravagers and go from there in whatever direction they want. I definitely do *not* encourage you to use disintegrators. They are an awful choice. In the old codex a disintegrator was STR7 AP2, small blast. Three blast templates per vehicle that could kill terminators, or in a pinch try opening up a rhino/razorback here and there. They were pimp. I used them and relied on other things for anti-tank. Now....they're basically the old submunition round without the cool template. STR5 AP2 isn't worth wasting a heavy support slot on when EVERY GUN IN YOUR FETHING ARMY is poisoned. Terminators these days are packing storm shields on both arms, a spare on their back, and extras in the land raider in case anyone forgot to bring a storm shield for a 3+ invul save. Volume of fire is what brings down terminators, not quality shots. Against Monstrous Creatures, you have STR8 AP2 lances or volume of fire from splinter weapons - there's simply no niche for disintegrators to fill that can't be filled somewhere else by a weapon with more general purpose. And when it comes down to it, while you can put blasters all over an army, the single best source of anti-tank is *always* going to come from the triple lances per ravager. Don't compromise this for anything. Start every list with three of them.

4. Did I see Night shields somewhere? No? I thought I did. Don't ever take them. Ever. They are useless. There are about three weapons across ALL codices that the night shield will give you utility against. Either it already outranges you by 12" and could care less that you have Night shields (autocannons, missiles, etc), or is mounted on a platform that can return fire even if you're at 36" and night shielded (multi-lasers, heavy bolters, lascannons, etc). Bolters, assault cannons and meltas. Oh noes. Totally screwed with them ha! Well, melta doesn't need help cracking an open-topped transport with the second D6, and if you're letting guys get up to melta range, you're already doing something wrong. Simply not worth the points. Don't do it.

5. You have three units of Warriors in Venoms for objective grabbing. Give them LETHALITY! Objective grabbing is what you do when your opponent has been crafty enough that you're not going to get to table them. 5x Warriors with a blaster inside a venom that has a second splinter cannon. Now you have the means of not only laying waste to the contents of any transport you open, but you have the ability to explode those transports in the first place. It cost you 25 more points to turn this objective holder into a lethal unit. Tactically, I could never recommend you taking an army from a codex designed to be a lethal instrument and assigning some of it to a non-lethal duty. Every piece of your army should be designed to maim, mutilate, explode, wreck, torture and enslave.

6. Wyches: They are tie-up units like beasts; STR3 non power weapons isn't scaring anyone off, but with a 4+ invulnerable save and a potential 4+ FNP depending on your configuration and HQ selection, they can sit in combat with things more expensive and deadly than them for some time and even win. Haywire grenades make you lethal against ANY vehicle (not to mention being your best and only competitive selection for dealing with both Monoliths and Blessed Hull Land Raiders), and FNP gives you survivability to get through raider explosions and the results of your haywire handiwork. 7....is just an awkward number. Kick it up to nine, and add a haemonculi. If that means you have to drop the other unit of wyches, do it.

7. Speaking of your second unit of wyches....hekatrix with an agoniser and a PGL joined by a haemy with an agoniser in a raider with a flickerfield....PHEW! Haemonculi might have the ability to take close combat weapons, but that doesn't mean that you SHOULD....especially when they're T3 with a 6+ armor save and an IC that can be targeted separately in close combat. My favorite haemonculi weapon of all time, the ultimate equalizer: The Shattershard. Take a toughness test, and if you fail, remove the model from play. Easier to kill Eldrad with a shattershard than with a crucible of malediction. Even better, the fact that it calls out each of the models touched by the shattershard means that you are literally playing a game of flamer sniper. Drop a shattershard template over a unit of ork boyz, touch the Nob and the KFF Big Mek with it, and those two models (and the other models you've touched with the flame template) take toughness tests or are removed from play. 500 point unit of terminators....every 5 or 6 is a model removed from play. Independent Characters, power fists, Eternal Warrior, doesn't matter - remove it from the table. =D If you're packing multiple haemonculi and you want to wargear them out, drop a liquifier on the others so that they can stay in the raider/venom after their attached unit goes to cause its own trouble. Just adding extra threat, extra distraction units, too many things for an enemy to deal with.

8. And finally, trueborn. Trueborn should be like taking extra ravagers. And this is where I saw those Night shields at. Drop those. Your trueborn are pimped out for infantry killing, but as you've noted in your weaknesses, it isn't infantry that scares you, it’s your tanks getting shot out of the sky. Aside from Ravagers, trueborn are your next best threat. 4 Trueborn with 4 blasters, or 3 trueborn with 3 blasters. You move 12", disembark them into cover somewhere, and open up on a vehicle. It’s literally like having 6 ravagers in your army. Let the anti-infantry duty be executed by your volume of fire splinter cannons and splinter rifles on your no-longer useless warriors. 6" move, rapid fire from a venom, rinse and repeat. Pack as much anti-tank as you can into your army. If you run out of tanks, don't worry that you're not going to have enough to deal with infantry - because the infantry are not NEARLY as threatening to you as the tanks.

Personally, if I go second, I reserve everything. Between 12" moves and 36" guns, I can range the whole board - so whether I go first or second...*I* get the alpha-strike.

*Edit*

Since this is where I'm compiling my DE advice, pasting in most of something I wrote elsewhere.

Most importantly, remember this: DE are perhaps the *most* unforgiving army in 40k. A space wolf rookie can put an army on the table, and do well with it, even if they make mistakes. A DE rookie cannot. It is an *extremely* powerful army, but requires an extremely competent general to pilot. I can't begin to quote you statistics like 90% or 99% or anything, but almost every Dark Eldar player I've met in person, and most of those I've met online fail to achieve with their Dark Eldar because they're simply not good enough. Either not good enough to write a competent list, not good enough to play a competent list effectively, or a combination of both.

So for YOU who plays a BA army that can't mishap its deep-strikes because of gyrostabilizers, and who plays a Kan-wall that simply marches forward 6", takes 4+ cover against everything (I love a Kan wall; I play Orks too)....I ask you this: Do you make mistakes on the table? Are you a fast learner? If you're a good player and not prone to "Ah crap, I shouldn't have done that" then try out DE. If the idea that a mistake might just cost you the game is a painful idea, then it’s not the army for you. Here's some common ones:

-Aw crap, enemy reserves coming in and my ravagers are angled towards the middle of the board, presenting my rear armor to the flanks.
-Aw craw, I mean to flat out to get a cover save.
-Aw crap, I thought I'd be able to get into assault range.
-Aw crap, I should have shot that instead.

Those are deadly. Understanding target and threat priority, vehicular positioning, assault reach....if an enemy does something or shoots at something that you weren't expecting, you did something wrong. =p

If you've got those things covered, you will murder people with Dark Eldar. It’s to the point where there are exactly *two* army builds in the entire 40k universe give me pause. One of them I fear, one of them I just respect.

SO! Nothing like your current armies. Much more powerful if you have the ability to put the reigns to that power and drive it well.

The original post was posted on DakkaDakka. You may find the post here.
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Todo13
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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSat May 28 2011, 10:48

Hmm… I agree with some of this, but not to always take min squads of warriors
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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSat May 28 2011, 15:57

He has a good View on things, and lots of it is good advice, but with some things, He is too stubborn ;-)
Ravangers are great but always 3? What about a talos/Cronos or One of The Foyers?

But his advice is Not wrong, it's just One (very good) View on The issue.

That being said, i should stop critisising others and at least try to make my own personal tactica.
I Bursa it would Start with:
"Do Not try these tactics at home, as you'll Need to be crazy enough to use them" As i am One of thouse "crazy people" with a blaster Lord, Even though The huskblade Lord got used more often.

Anywho great read and good advice!
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Hashmal
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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSat May 28 2011, 16:11

General intro lets me expect a Stelek-like personality. There's a reason I don't read Stelek.

Dash wrote:

General Philosophy:
1. Dark Eldar are a glass cannon. They're meant to strike hard, strike fast, but don't have the tools to withstand return fire / counter assaults. So they're an extremely powerful army, but very unforgiving.

Agreed.

Dash wrote:

2. Every model in a Dark Eldar army should have a purpose, and ablative wounds should NEVER be one of them. A unit of 5 warriors is meant to hold an objective. 5 warriors is also the minimum squad size. Six warriors are not better than five warriors, nor are seven warriors better than five warriors. Every additional model and expenditure of points that you put into something that is not created, honed, and visualized to kill something is a waste of points. I'll get back to this with your warrior squads in particular later.

Also agreed. Ablative wounds are rather pointless in a DE squad, since killing 8 dudes is often about as easy as killing 5. However, CC units are different (they provide more attacks and need resilience to be effective).

Dash wrote:

3. Heat Lances: You're not missing anything. In the old codex, reavers had a better save, could take more special weapons (3 reavers with two blasters)...and were *still* borderline not worth using. They were a filler unit to bring a distraction unit to the table to turbo-boost up the side of the table and maybe snipe out a tank as a distraction, or to turbo-boost around the table near the end of the game to annoy and contest objectives. Reavers are even worse in the new codex. They're weaker, require double the unit size to get the same number of weapons, and the single weapon that would make them interesting is just as you called it - too dangerous and expensive to competitively consider. There's an alternative methods of heat lance delivery, but none of them do it effectively or efficiently when comparing to other means of disposing of tanks in your arsenal.

He just called a 12 point 18" S6 AP1 melta lance weapon expensive. A weapon that is slightly less effective than a melta gun (my prime beef, honestly, but it is less effective at the bottom of the curve where such things are less important) but is entirely on mobile or resilient platforms and has 3" greater effective melta range. My spidey sense is tingling.

I wonder where else he's getting reliable tank pop through AP1? Oh wait.

Dash wrote:

4. Versatility: I firmly believe that every unit in a Dark Eldar army should, if at all possible, have a dual role. 5 warriors with a single blaster inside a venom with dual splinter cannons is a great example. That's a transport killer. It’s a land raider killer. And it’s *also* effective (both the unit inside and vehicle) against every variety of infantry from MEQs to GEQs to terminators to Monstrous Creatures to Star Gods. You can't do much about creating dual purpose roles for Ravagers - they're lances. They shoot vehicles until there are no more (or MCs if there are no vehicles), then start sniping at ICs, terminators, etc.

Duality is great. Duality, however, emphasizes units having two functions. A squad embarked in a transport is not an example of duality - I see this often. They are two separate units that do pretty much one thing. If he means duality in force org slot, then this is accurate. However, that is not the commonly understood meaning of duality.

Dash wrote:

5. Reliance on Vehicles: This is *not* a weakness, it is a strength. Lances are 36", Splinter Cannons are 36", and ultimately, blasters are 18" weapons that can be fired after a 12" move and a 2" disembarkation, making them effectively a 33" weapon. You outrange pretty much everything except for missiles, autocannons, and railguns when you consider mobility as part of your firepower. Yes...bolters can theoretically pop a raider. But all of your weapons outrange bolters. And since you have flickerfields, you literally have 33% more vehicles than you paid for.

I agree with his comments on vehicles. It's funny he trashes night shields later because you can't stay out of range of 36" weaponry, but then says not to fear bolters when your 18" weaponry outranges them. In either case, a 6" move closes the gap.

Personally, I don't fear bolters either.

Dash wrote:

6. Open-topped: Don't worry about it. When an open-topped vehicle explodes, it’s a STR3 hit on the passengers, or 4+ to wound your models....and that's what you have required minimum sized units for. 5 warriors with a blaster means 4 models die before you have to worry about losing its best weapon. Haemonculi make wyches get Feel No Pain, making them great raider companions. More on this later again.

I agree again. People make a big deal about open topped. Get used to it. It has some serious advantages too.

Dash wrote:

Your List:
1. Baron Sathonyx is a great HQ choice. I love him for the +1 to go first if nothing else. It wins me the roll to go first quite often. You're not sure where to put him - the obvious answer is that since he's jump infantry and can't be embarked, put him with the only unit that you have on foot: Your beasts. You can freely move him about in the movement phase - whether an IC is attached to a unit or not is dictated by their respective positioning to the unit at the beginning and at the end of the phase - which means that you can move the Baron around and through the unit to get him where you want him (away from potential threats, towards threats, etc). On the plus side, he has the HUGE advantage of giving the beasts +1 cover, and even MORE huge....offensive and defensive grenades. The only downside is that he's not cavalry and doesn't have the same 12" charge that the beasts do. You always move at the speed of the slowest model...so where the beasts would assault 2d6, pick the highest x2, the Baron (being an IC) gets 3d6. So your assault range with the Baron attached is 3d6, pick the highest. You've got a pretty good chance of getting 5-6" of assault range. And if you're not going to be able to get the Baron and friends into an assault (something you'll learn to eyeball with practice), you can detach the Baron and send him either into cover, away from threats, or to go pick on something (probably a vehicle) by himself. And if you can't get into assault.....well, you can sit in cover with a 3+ cover save and defensive grenades. The Baron and Khymerae are I6 and the Razorwings are I5, so you'll probably still be going first (or simultaneously).

What's this 2d6-3d6 stuff? Is he always assuming a charge through or into difficult terrain? Granted, it's not uncommon, but to act like that's their baseline assault range is... misleading. I like the Baron in WWP armies, but people make a big deal about going first.

Dash wrote:

2. Your beast unit is illegal. Each beastmaster (0-4) can take 0-5 Khymerae, 0-2 Razorwing Flocks, or 0-1 Clawed Fiend. You'll have to add one more Beastmaster to get 5 Khymerae and 4 Razorwing Flocks. You should do it though. With the Baron along to give them grenades and stealth, these guys are fearsome. And with rending 6 attacks on the charge per model for razorwings, you can pop vehicles too! =D

Can pop vehicles does not mean should. Dark Eldar have multiple ranged AT options. Don't be Daemons.

5 Khymerae and 4 Razorwings is the configuration I espouse too. Clawed Fiends are terrible, imo.

Dash wrote:

3. Ravagers: Presuming that your entry (Ravager with Flickerfield filled to brim with DLs. 3x) means that you have three units of triple lance ravagers, and not one ravager with 3 dark lances, you're on the right track. I firmly believe that *every* competitive Dark Eldar list should start with three triple lance ravagers and go from there in whatever direction they want. I definitely do *not* encourage you to use disintegrators. They are an awful choice. In the old codex a disintegrator was STR7 AP2, small blast. Three blast templates per vehicle that could kill terminators, or in a pinch try opening up a rhino/razorback here and there. They were pimp. I used them and relied on other things for anti-tank. Now....they're basically the old submunition round without the cool template. STR5 AP2 isn't worth wasting a heavy support slot on when EVERY GUN IN YOUR FETHING ARMY is poisoned. Terminators these days are packing storm shields on both arms, a spare on their back, and extras in the land raider in case anyone forgot to bring a storm shield for a 3+ invul save. Volume of fire is what brings down terminators, not quality shots. Against Monstrous Creatures, you have STR8 AP2 lances or volume of fire from splinter weapons - there's simply no niche for disintegrators to fill that can't be filled somewhere else by a weapon with more general purpose. And when it comes down to it, while you can put blasters all over an army, the single best source of anti-tank is *always* going to come from the triple lances per ravager. Don't compromise this for anything. Start every list with three of them.

I don't think I agree with every list needing to start with three Ravagers, but I agree with the rest of this. Ravagers are solid and Disintegrator Cannons are not.

Dash wrote:

4. Did I see Night shields somewhere? No? I thought I did. Don't ever take them. Ever. They are useless. There are about three weapons across ALL codices that the night shield will give you utility against. Either it already outranges you by 12" and could care less that you have Night shields (autocannons, missiles, etc), or is mounted on a platform that can return fire even if you're at 36" and night shielded (multi-lasers, heavy bolters, lascannons, etc). Bolters, assault cannons and meltas. Oh noes. Totally screwed with them ha! Well, melta doesn't need help cracking an open-topped transport with the second D6, and if you're letting guys get up to melta range, you're already doing something wrong. Simply not worth the points. Don't do it.

SPIDEY SENSE. They're perfectly worth the points, alter movement of 36" weaponry, and can literally take squads out of the equation - like entire squads of Grey Hunters. Further, this comment entirely ignores any army that isn't Guard or Space Marines. Night Shields, for example, completely dominate Grey Knight, Daemon, Blood Angel (who rely on nothing BUT melta and Assault Cannons for tank pop), Chaos Space Marine, Sisters of Battle (except for those blasted Exorcists), Tyranid, and Ork (who actually have effective ranged AT versus us) armies, while annoying Guard (Multilasers are 36" range - force them to move) and Eldar (see previous, change Multilaser to Scatter Laser) armies. Necrons are already humped.

Okay, so they're not great against Space Wolves, Tau, and standard Marines who hump Riflemen Dreads. Three armies. I'm not impressed.

As a note, I always take Night Shields over Flickerfields because generating cover saves isn't exactly hard, so Flickerfields are often redundant. However, vehicle upgrades are some of the last things I add to any list, so often they're absent.

Dash wrote:

5. You have three units of Warriors in Venoms for objective grabbing. Give them LETHALITY! Objective grabbing is what you do when your opponent has been crafty enough that you're not going to get to table them. 5x Warriors with a blaster inside a venom that has a second splinter cannon. Now you have the means of not only laying waste to the contents of any transport you open, but you have the ability to explode those transports in the first place. It cost you 25 more points to turn this objective holder into a lethal unit. Tactically, I could never recommend you taking an army from a codex designed to be a lethal instrument and assigning some of it to a non-lethal duty. Every piece of your army should be designed to maim, mutilate, explode, wreck, torture and enslave.

Staple of Venom Spam. With the lack of Raiders, your Warriors have to pick up AT duty, since you lean on vehicles for AI.

Dash wrote:

6. Wyches: They are tie-up units like beasts; STR3 non power weapons isn't scaring anyone off, but with a 4+ invulnerable save and a potential 4+ FNP depending on your configuration and HQ selection, they can sit in combat with things more expensive and deadly than them for some time and even win. Haywire grenades make you lethal against ANY vehicle (not to mention being your best and only competitive selection for dealing with both Monoliths and Blessed Hull Land Raiders), and FNP gives you survivability to get through raider explosions and the results of your haywire handiwork. 7....is just an awkward number. Kick it up to nine, and add a haemonculi. If that means you have to drop the other unit of wyches, do it.

It's hard for me to take anyone seriously that mentions us needing to take care of Monoliths - that is not a stellar argument for taking anything. However, I'm glad he sees that Wyches are a tarpit unit.

Dash wrote:

7. Speaking of your second unit of wyches....hekatrix with an agoniser and a PGL joined by a haemy with an agoniser in a raider with a flickerfield....PHEW! Haemonculi might have the ability to take close combat weapons, but that doesn't mean that you SHOULD....especially when they're T3 with a 6+ armor save and an IC that can be targeted separately in close combat. My favorite haemonculi weapon of all time, the ultimate equalizer: The Shattershard. Take a toughness test, and if you fail, remove the model from play. Easier to kill Eldrad with a shattershard than with a crucible of malediction. Even better, the fact that it calls out each of the models touched by the shattershard means that you are literally playing a game of flamer sniper. Drop a shattershard template over a unit of ork boyz, touch the Nob and the KFF Big Mek with it, and those two models (and the other models you've touched with the flame template) take toughness tests or are removed from play. 500 point unit of terminators....every 5 or 6 is a model removed from play. Independent Characters, power fists, Eternal Warrior, doesn't matter - remove it from the table. =D If you're packing multiple haemonculi and you want to wargear them out, drop a liquifier on the others so that they can stay in the raider/venom after their attached unit goes to cause its own trouble. Just adding extra threat, extra distraction units, too many things for an enemy to deal with.

I like this. Haemonculi shouldn't take CC weapons, yet he gives him one. Wut. Maybe that was meant ironically. Second, Haemonculi are T4; Ancients are T5 (and a waste of points). Shattershards are amazing, which is why you only get one. I agree that the kit for Haemonculi is a Liquifier. You can also take a Venom Blade if you plan on getting down and dirty; they're cheap enough.

Dash wrote:

8. And finally, trueborn. Trueborn should be like taking extra ravagers. And this is where I saw those Night shields at. Drop those. Your trueborn are pimped out for infantry killing, but as you've noted in your weaknesses, it isn't infantry that scares you, it’s your tanks getting shot out of the sky. Aside from Ravagers, trueborn are your next best threat. 4 Trueborn with 4 blasters, or 3 trueborn with 3 blasters. You move 12", disembark them into cover somewhere, and open up on a vehicle. It’s literally like having 6 ravagers in your army. Let the anti-infantry duty be executed by your volume of fire splinter cannons and splinter rifles on your no-longer useless warriors. 6" move, rapid fire from a venom, rinse and repeat. Pack as much anti-tank as you can into your army. If you run out of tanks, don't worry that you're not going to have enough to deal with infantry - because the infantry are not NEARLY as threatening to you as the tanks.

Precisely why Blasterborn are the best unit in the Elites slot.

Dash wrote:

Personally, if I go second, I reserve everything. Between 12" moves and 36" guns, I can range the whole board - so whether I go first or second...*I* get the alpha-strike.

Play Daemons. It'll put you off Reserves forever. This is a huge gamble. If we had some way to augment our Reserves roll, I'd recommend it every time.

It's not an alpha strike when three of your squads come in on Turn 2.

Dash wrote:

*Edit*

Since this is where I'm compiling my DE advice, pasting in most of something I wrote elsewhere.

Most importantly, remember this: DE are perhaps the *most* unforgiving army in 40k. A space wolf rookie can put an army on the table, and do well with it, even if they make mistakes. A DE rookie cannot. It is an *extremely* powerful army, but requires an extremely competent general to pilot. I can't begin to quote you statistics like 90% or 99% or anything, but almost every Dark Eldar player I've met in person, and most of those I've met online fail to achieve with their Dark Eldar because they're simply not good enough. Either not good enough to write a competent list, not good enough to play a competent list effectively, or a combination of both.

Dark Eldar are unforgiving. They're not Space Marines. If you play them like Space Marines, you'll lose.

They're not the most unforgiving army out there. I direct your attention to Tau, Necrons, Sisters of Battle, and Grey Knights (new codex aside, they don't have the model count to mess up). Of these armies, only Necrons lack the competitive edge, but mistakes are extremely bad for them.

Dash wrote:

So for YOU who plays a BA army that can't mishap its deep-strikes because of gyrostabilizers, and who plays a Kan-wall that simply marches forward 6", takes 4+ cover against everything (I love a Kan wall; I play Orks too)....I ask you this: Do you make mistakes on the table? Are you a fast learner? If you're a good player and not prone to "Ah crap, I shouldn't have done that" then try out DE. If the idea that a mistake might just cost you the game is a painful idea, then it’s not the army for you. Here's some common ones:

-Aw crap, enemy reserves coming in and my ravagers are angled towards the middle of the board, presenting my rear armor to the flanks.
-Aw craw, I mean to flat out to get a cover save.
-Aw crap, I thought I'd be able to get into assault range.
-Aw crap, I should have shot that instead.

Ah, rookie mistakes. Every army suffers from this, though, and when playing against a good player, this can spell doom even for Space Marines - especially when the good player is a Dark Eldar player.

Dash wrote:

Those are deadly. Understanding target and threat priority, vehicular positioning, assault reach....if an enemy does something or shoots at something that you weren't expecting, you did something wrong. =p

If you've got those things covered, you will murder people with Dark Eldar. It’s to the point where there are exactly *two* army builds in the entire 40k universe give me pause. One of them I fear, one of them I just respect.

Let me guess: LasPlasmaback Space Wolf spam and Chimera Wall Guard? Yep. They're the only two I fear as well. Note: competitive Tau can brutalize our army - however, if their dice go a bit cold, it's lights out for them. I always respect a competitive Tau player, cause if you think DE are hard, give that a whirl. THAT'S hard.

All in all, some I like, some I did my best to shoot down.

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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSat May 28 2011, 16:11

@Crazy_Irish wrote:
He has a good View on things, and lots of it is good advice, but with some things, He is too stubborn ;-)
Ravangers are great but always 3? What about a talos/Cronos or One of The Foyers?

But his advice is Not wrong, it's just One (very good) View on The issue.

That being said, i should stop critisising others and at least try to make my own personal tactica.
I Bursa it would Start with:
"Do Not try these tactics at home, as you'll Need to be crazy enough to use them" As i am One of thouse "crazy people" with a blaster Lord, Even though The huskblade Lord got used more often.

Anywho great read and good advice!

Crazy people? Blaster Archons are amazing. Don't let anyone tell you differently.

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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSat May 28 2011, 17:28

@Xelkireth wrote:
your assault range with the Baron attached is 3d6, pick the highest.

While I agree with most of what Dash said, I have to point out the flaw here: the Barons loses move through cover when joining a unit that doesn't have it (ie: beasts). Therefor they'll only assault 2d6 pick highest. It's something I feel people should know Wink.

Also: Night Shields are my favourite upgrade for raiders, with those I can survive first turn shooting if I have to go second... Raiders mostly move flat out when the killy stuff is inside, making Flickerfields worthless. After they've dropped their payload I'm usually not too worried about losing them.

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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSat May 28 2011, 17:35

I personally think Dissintegrator Ravagers work great in very small games. I played one 400 point Combat Patrols game. This was my list:

Kabalite Warriors x5
- Blaster
Transport: Raider
- Splinter Racks
- Shock Prow

Ravager:
- 3x Disintegrator Cannons
- Shock Prow

Razorwing Jetfighter:
- Splinter Cannon

I posted the battle report here if you want to read what happened: http://www.miniwargaming.com/forum/viewtopic.php?f=58&t=58896

It worked great for me. It tore apart several Bloodcrushers in a way that Dark Lances could not. Admittedly it wasn't a perfect list, but it functioned beautifully.

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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSat May 28 2011, 21:51

Looked, readed, walked away.

Basic stuff is right actually, but he ofen NOT use his advices (like this one about not taking useless stuff while picking single Wyches, Beasts and Duke in Venomspam. Yes, just in case he meet triple Monoliths or Blessed Hull Land Rider bla bla bla).

Also, he cheat. He used old Raiders (that are bigger than new ones) and... Venoms. Yeah...

So while I DO liked his advices for Orks (which I can sum - "it's good codex without crappy units"; I use twin Warpheads and Meganobz in Trukks, duh) I think I'll pass.

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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSat May 28 2011, 22:00

I posted it mainly as an alternative view to competitive tactics. I'm trying to get permission from another Dark Eldar player to post their tactics articles, but as of yet, I've gotten to reply.
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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSat May 28 2011, 22:20

I do realise that, however I encourage people (especially new, since unlike other races there was NO DE community/playerbase before recent rerelase of codex.) to NOT look at "woow, Dash wrote this" but rather "hey, some dude write this".

Never take anything from internet 100% serious, even this post Razz Like those things about Warpheads.

Yes, Grotesques suck on paper. Or Shredders suck. Try them anyway. I did with Warpies and my W/L rised from 40-50% to 70-80%. Orks can work without BikeBoss/KFF but internet says otherwise...

Oh and I'm refering to Ork codex because it's non-melta/lance ancestor of DE. Same stuff, same problems, just not so suited to "mech da king".

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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSat May 28 2011, 22:26

I agree with him in a lot of things (Haemies should be kept pretty cheap, blasterborn are awesome), but I still think Reavers are pretty damn good and dissies aren't 100% useless (altho the only thing I'd take em on is the razorwing. With 2 disintegrators, splintercannon and missiles, that thing mows down infantry like nobody's business). Also, I trongly disagree with always taking 3 ravagers. Ravagers are great yes, but there's a whole lot of other great options too. I think the important part isn't the ravagers, but that you have enough anti tank, be it ravagers, blasterborn, reavers or scourges. I try to have atleast 1 AT weapon per 100 points. Ravagers are a good source of them, but by no means the only one (blasterborn are great because you also get anti-infantry with a venom, and scourges can be very good for reliably supressing enemy guns, even if they shouldn't be relied on as the main form of AT).

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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSat May 28 2011, 22:33

@Local_Ork wrote:
I do realise that, however I encourage people (especially new, since unlike other races there was NO DE community/playerbase before recent rerelase of codex.) to NOT look at "woow, Dash wrote this" but rather "hey, some dude write this".
Exactly. I personally despise Dash. Some of his points are valid. Some of his points are down right abusive.

Never take anything from internet 100% serious, even this post Razz Like those things about Warpheads.

@Local_Ork wrote:
Yes, Grotesques suck on paper. Or Shredders suck. Try them anyway. I did with Warpies and my W/L rised from 40-50% to 70-80%. Orks can work without BikeBoss/KFF but internet says otherwise...
I can't stress this enough. What works for one person, may not work for you. Point and example: During the wonderful reign of the 3.5 Edition of the Chaos Codex, I ran an Emperor's Children army. I spent the time and money to convert completely, sonic bikers, sonic terminators and sonic tanks. Anyone and everyone who could field sonic weaponry had a sonic blaster or blastmaster. Most of the Chaos players in San Francisco at that time (or at least the ones I ran across) either played Khorne 'zerker lists, Iron Warriors, or Alpha Legion. Not only did I do well with my Emperor's Children, I won consistently with them. I even one a few tournaments with a list that most of the "serious" competitive players laughed at.
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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSat May 28 2011, 22:54

Reposting my thoughts on meta vs individual and net lists (I wrote this 7 months ago)

Ok so I started rambling (and I'm still rambling here) in an army list advice post and managed to pin down some thoughts I've been having recently a theory of the 'meta-gestalt'

The Meta- Gestalt

This is the phenomonen of having an internet community dedicated to one game whereas the trend for armies within that system is set to beat the percieved most powerful-build within that system. This leads to that build being most powerfull and the process begins anew encouraged by the more vocal/repected (note that there is a big difference between the two) members of the games community. This should in theory lead to a dynamic ever changing game meta but in practice it leads to 'internet lists' and a restriction of creativity.


All that said I have started to realise that with army lists (and especially in the case of the more anti-meta esoteric lists) only the original author can now what will work for him/her and a lot of the advice you get will be attempts to drag you back to the 'meta-gestalt' fold. So my advice would be break the mold become that Unique Beautiful Butterfly and escape the grasp of the 'meta-gestalt'.

The only way you can know how a list or unit will preform for you with your own tactical acumen is for you to try it out. The advice you get on boards about your lists will be tainted by the personal experiences of the poster or agents of the 'meta-gestalt' out to drag you back to the fold. Some of the best lists I have devised recently have had no comments at all on some bigger boards.


This post is sponsored by coffee and a lack of good sleep and while the ideas contained within may be sane if you can find them the poster most definately is not.

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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSun May 29 2011, 01:18

@The Strange Dude wrote:
Reposting my thoughts on meta vs individual and net lists (I wrote this 7 months ago)

Ok so I started rambling (and I'm still rambling here) in an army list advice post and managed to pin down some thoughts I've been having recently a theory of the 'meta-gestalt'

The Meta- Gestalt

This is the phenomonen of having an internet community dedicated to one game whereas the trend for armies within that system is set to beat the percieved most powerful-build within that system. This leads to that build being most powerfull and the process begins anew encouraged by the more vocal/repected (note that there is a big difference between the two) members of the games community. This should in theory lead to a dynamic ever changing game meta but in practice it leads to 'internet lists' and a restriction of creativity.


All that said I have started to realise that with army lists (and especially in the case of the more anti-meta esoteric lists) only the original author can now what will work for him/her and a lot of the advice you get will be attempts to drag you back to the 'meta-gestalt' fold. So my advice would be break the mold become that Unique Beautiful Butterfly and escape the grasp of the 'meta-gestalt'.

The only way you can know how a list or unit will preform for you with your own tactical acumen is for you to try it out. The advice you get on boards about your lists will be tainted by the personal experiences of the poster or agents of the 'meta-gestalt' out to drag you back to the fold. Some of the best lists I have devised recently have had no comments at all on some bigger boards.


This post is sponsored by coffee and a lack of good sleep and while the ideas contained within may be sane if you can find them the poster most definately is not.
Arrow [[Xelkireth likes this.]]
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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeSun May 29 2011, 17:13

In my humble opinion I think one of the greater problems with internet lists opposed to homemade lists is that the player who just takes a list of the internet doesn't always know how the list is supposed to be ran. This is especially true for certain armies that require careful planning and synergy with other units in the roster to work well. Someone with a "perfect" internet list who has no idea how to wield it would get crushed by someone with their own "mediocre" list that they understand how to play with.
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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeMon May 30 2011, 09:39

When critiquing lists I am more likely to comment on unit configuraton rather than the actual units used in the list.

This is becuase the original poster probably has the models in his list already and adding/removing them means that some wont see any action.

I also think that all units are worth trying out even if its just for experience. This is a very practical approech in the DE list where EVERY unit has a place, even in so called optimised lists. You just have to figure out the best unit config and blend them with your other units to make something terrifying.

On another less positive note I am disappointed to see Dash getting knocked here. The mods should just delete posts that attack other members individually. Nobody will post here if they think they will be torn down by the resident internet celeberity.

We need to aspire to be like d.net in its heyday. In the days of the 6th ed army book it was the most amazing resource and full of very knowlegable, helpful poters with a sense of humor.


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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeMon May 30 2011, 09:42

@Venkh wrote:
Nobody will post here if they think they will be torn down by the resident internet celeberity.
Lol. Obviously, this is not an issue.
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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeMon May 30 2011, 09:46

Quote :
Lol. Obviously, this is not an issue.

A star is born! Very Happy

But seriously no. No massive ego's here. Yet.
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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeMon May 30 2011, 09:49

Dash has, and probably always will, spark controversy. It won't matter what army he plays. As to "Dash knocking" none of the comments have been over the top. Everyone is entitled to their opinion.
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PostSubject: Re: Generalized Advice from Dash   Generalized Advice from Dash I_icon_minitimeMon May 30 2011, 13:44

@Hashmal wrote:
Dash wrote:
Most importantly, remember this: DE are perhaps the *most* unforgiving army in 40k.

Dash wrote:

If you've got those things covered, you will murder people with Dark Eldar. It’s to the point where there are exactly *two* army builds in the entire 40k universe give me pause. One of them I fear, one of them I just respect.

Let me guess: LasPlasmaback Space Wolf spam and Chimera Wall Guard? Yep. They're the only two I fear as well. Note: competitive Tau can brutalize our army - however, if their dice go a bit cold, it's lights out for them. I always respect a competitive Tau player, cause if you think DE are hard, give that a whirl. THAT'S hard.

All in all, some I like, some I did my best to shoot down.

Very good OP and feedback from Hashmal aswell.
Agree on that Tau is at least as challenging to play, but not at all in the same way (apart from target prio)

Going to my first real tournament with the new Dark Eldar this weekend, expecting to have a blast...
(and 13 blasters)
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