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  1. #1
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    Default New DE player needs some advice

    As some of you are undoubtedly already aware I'm unboxing my old Dark Eldar and am getting back into that army for casual games.

    I've run through a few battles now and have run into a problem: I'm having difficulty killing Space Marines and their ilk efficiently.

    Massed Splinter fire from raiders with Splinter racks gets me a lot of hits and plenty of wounds, but they keep bouncing off the 3+ armour (and often those that get through are getting stopped by FNP. Death Company and Icon of Excess are both to blame). In close combat I obviously fare even worse, as relatively low strength and lack of units with good armour penetration means that only squad leaders with agonizers are reliable for taking on the MEQ, outside of my Incubi.

    Since I play as a very fast, shoot-from-vehicles-and-maybe-assault-to-clean-up army, I can't exactly rely on an Incubi squad to be my only hard counter to MEQ. The only gun that I've seen that really seems to do the job I need is the Disintigrator Cannon, and the only way to field them en mass is via Ravagers. (I tend to use my raiders for AV work)

    How do other Dark Eldar players hard counter MEQ? Am I missing something really obvious?

  2. #2

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    How do other Dark Eldar players hard counter MEQ? Am I missing something really obvious?
    We do not "hard counter" MEQ. We try to make maxed out army lists, have more experience and do not make any mistakes to end up on even ground. That is how bad the codex is.

    Units that do have a fighting chance:

    Venoms + Kabalites (lots of them, cheaper than gunboats and more firepower point for point)
    Grots + Raider
    Grotesquerie + WWP (Haemonculus coven)
    Trueborn + Blaster + Venom
    Reavers (lots of small units)
    Ravager (Lances)

    Thats about it.
    After the new "grav everywhere" codex, you can't even use the Dark Artisan or Corpsethief anymore.

    So in short: don't bother. As a DE beginner you will hardly ever win.

  3. #3

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    Short answer: there isn't one.

    Scourges and Trueborn can do the trick if you equip them with blasters... but that's really expensive and squishy just to kill MEQ. You can potentially run Pain Engines to kill MEQ in melee.. but they're slow if you aren't running the Covens supplement. In fact, if you aren't running the Covens supplement, most Dark Eldar 'counters' to common game situations are either way too expensive (like.. priced from several editions ago expensive), not very effective, or both. Ravagers, for example, are way too expensive for a paper-thin gun platform that only has a few shots.

    Before the 7th codex dropped, I was running two squads of Incubi in Raiders for MEQ clean-up. After 7th.. well, without the grenade launcher on the archon (and therefore the incubi), even that stopgap doesn't work anymore unless you get lucky and your opponent is in the open.

    As for a serious answer: ally in Craftworld Eldar? Or wait for the next Dark Eldar codex, one should drop within the next year at this rate.
    Last edited by vonDietdrich; 06-20-2015 at 04:56 AM.

  4. #4
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    Default

    Well, that is interesting. Blasters are it? Ouch.

    Meh, massed fire will have to do. I've been using a blend of speed, defeat-in-detail tactics and luck so far (not kidding on the luck: took out 'Cron elites squad with 300 point lord with two squads of witches. Charged, inflicted one casualty, they epic failed, flunked their morale and got cleaned up in the sweeping advance). I've drawn both game's I've played as DE so far, and the second one was a 4 way melee that I would have won except for a lucky shot taking down a scoring model and an enemy commander who just WOULD. NOT. DIE. (Iron Arm Nurgle Demon Prince who'd just rolled perils, got a six, aced the check and now had a 3++ rerollable. Still I dropped him to 1 wound. Either killing him or keeping my unit would have made a clear win but it was not to be)

    Not going to be allying with Craftworld Eldar any time soon. I've got a 5,000 point plus Uthwe force but the whole reason I'm dropping to DE is it's less mean for friendly games. My only real problem so far has been people with far too much luck on their saves making my life difficult, hence the question.

    So from veterans, is there any situation at all where you'd take the Disintigrator cannon over the Dlance? I'm personally having a hard time seeing it as cheap and mobile AV seems to be at a premium.

    @Charon: I'm a novice to Dark Eldar, not a novice to the game (or even to fast, frail armies). Steep learning curve or no, I've been having fun with my new toys. Lack of counters to power armour is the only problem I'm consistently running into with them, but since that seems to be a codex issue rather than me overlooking something obvious I can adapt to compensate for friendly games. When it gets serious, I go back to the craft world and grab my big guns.

  5. #5

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    Honestly, I tend to leave my Disintegrators on my Raiders, since those are 5 points cheaper and I expect the boat to die anyway. Gives some Anti-Infantry punch to get some wounds before my splinter warriors open up... or after, if you think you've got a shot of exposing a special weapon or something with the massed fire.

    Venoms with 2 splinter cannons carting around some warriors with a blaster is not a bad option either. 12 poison shots from the Venom, then a couple more from the warriors, then a dark lance shot can put some hurt out, and it's a cheap unit with some decent durability (for DE).

    Grotesques are badasses. I like to stick my Succubus with Archite Glaive in there, aim them at some big mean squad, and go nuts. Remember that they all have poison weapons, and likely get rerolls to wound unless you're fighting T5 dudes, and the lucky Instant Death shots ignore FNP. I like to give the Aberration an Agonizer, since it's also poison and therefore gets rerolls (plus a ton of attacks!), so between him and the Succubus you can handle challenges pretty easily. Don't forget Rampage! D3 extra attacks on your dudes for fighting a bigger squad is awesome. The Liquifier Gun is... eh. I used to love them, but the S3 nerf and the 15 point cost are making me love them a lot less these days.

    Incubi obviously rock. Demiglaives are sad now, though. They used to be cool. Oh well, maybe next edition. I also miss the cool Klaivex powers from last edition, but oh well.

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by Fueldrop View Post
    My only real problem so far has been people with far too much luck on their saves making my life difficult, hence the question.
    It's not really luck on saves so much as how steep saves are now, with FNP or equivalent being common on MEQ (and DE have no good way to punch through 3+ anyway). Dark Eldar guns really weren't recalibrated in the new edition to deal with the sheer amount of 'hard saves' that things like Khorne have with their MEQ and demon saves plus army-wide FNP for tithe points, or Necrons with Decurion protocols, or FNP everywhere on Marines, etc. Relying on luck isn't really a good plan for Dark Eldar, since it doesn't take much bad luck to swing the game against you. Even with Power from Pain, Dark Eldar saves are dismal by comparison. (And then there's the lack of Psykers and ways to deal with Psykers..)

    As far as Dark Lances go, disintegrators are an unfortunate necessity to back up blasterborn squads in Raiders against MEQ and TEQ. Dis-ravagers aren't the greatest but it's not like you've got much in the way of alternatives for anti-MEQ ranged firepower. You can get a short distance with weight of fire and poisoned alone, and it used to be that Dark Eldar melee could go first and kill just about any single model in the game and ignore lots of saves. That's no longer the case, and just about everyone's better in melee than Dark Eldar now to top it off. You can get lucky with wyches, but you're wounding FNP MEQ on 5+ with no AP value, and that's terrible odds to gamble an entire squad on. And then they're wounding you on 3+ and you have a worse save.

    Like I said, Covens is pretty much the way to go to patch up the army if you really want to play them with decent odds of winning. Most Haemonculus-y units got big buffs and formations to top it off, and while they're not as cheap or generally useful as Kabalites in Raiders, they're overall much more well-rounded (and the glass jaw isn't as pronounced). Point for point they're all worse than their Craftworld Eldar analogs, but they're still better than most of the regular Dark Eldar units.
    Last edited by vonDietdrich; 06-20-2015 at 02:31 PM.

  7. #7

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    There is the model from the court of the Archon that has a Str4 ap3 template weapon (I can't remember it's name).
    You can use an Archon's webway portal to make their transport appear at a good angle and do a lot of damage to a marine unit with one or 2 of them from a Raider/venom
    Other than that Agonisers on squad leaders.
    All of my Wych squad leaders have them and they don't (in my experience) lose to marines.
    Plus as grav spam is likely with marines Wyches low armour becomes a good thing.

  8. #8
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    Default

    Just had 3 games with a Chaos Space Marines player, who to be fair is still a rookie. None the less the results were... disturbing.

    Seriously, I virtually tabled him 3 games out of 3, lost maybe 2 raiders and 4 squads between the games. Experience appears to be one hell of a force multiplier.

    On a less serious note: When he defeated the Chaos Lord and his champion in CC my Archon stole their souls, grabbed their bodies and dragged them back into the webway to be resurrected. Next raid, the pimp mobile had a new lap dancer to keep my Archon entertained while he glided into battle. Homonculi can work wonders.

  9. #9

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    Since it sounds like you're mostly talking Blood Angels and CSM here, you're in better shape than some of the doomsaying in this thread might suggest.

    Disintegrators - A good option, though competing with Dark Lances, so it's a hard option to fit in sometimes. You might consider keeping them on any Raiders you take--where you're more likely to Jink anyway and why waste the points on a 1 shot lance?-- and keeping your anti-tank on your Ravagers and Scourges. A Razorwing is also a decent place to take Disintegrators, and the missiles can certainly put out enough wounds if you get a clumped up target.

    Incubi - 5 with Klaivex in a Venom should pretty well wreck most MEQ units, even if they have to charge through cover, and they're fairly cheap. Especially if you soften a unit up with shooting first, they should mop up.

    Talos - If you're not facing down a horde of Grav weapons, Talos are still a really strong option. Fairly punchy and tough for their points, and can double as some anti-tank if you give them a Haywire Blaster.

    Grotesques - Volume of wounds will solve pretty much any Toughness based problem, and Grotesques bring that in spades (especially if outnumbered). Plus, the occasional lucky Instant Death will ignore FNP. They're a good unit to include in any army because they're so good against just about everything.

 

 

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