Feast of Blades '13

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

New Eldar Rules:The Competitive Edge

Hey all Kevin here getting back to my Competitive Edge article series writing. So with the book in a few hands lets go break down what Eldar will need to do to get the competitive edge in 40k.

I will probably follow this up with a more in depth view of the codex when its in my hand physically.....

OK so lets go through the army as a whole. It has gotten a lot more elite. I know the Eldar really wanted to get cheaper but instead we actually got more expensive points wise. Yet rules wise we got a huge boost across most of the board. Yet the extreme boost in abilities and rules will make this army potent in certain aspects, yet with a huge skill level increase to play this army effectively....aka it will be a hard codex to play correctly. I get why they did it since it would not fit the fluff to have massive hordes of eldar yet a general decrease would have been nice. The whole old nemesis thing is too niche to mean much to me as a competitive player. Slaanesh CSM is rare and we would only see this with daemons....which will happen but not that often....

Now I am ok with this. Army wide abilities such as shoot/run run/shoot is a huge ability....basically it is jump shoot jump light which is a very potent power when used correctly. We also saw  all shuriken weapons gain the new version of bladestorm which is basically rending light (aka no D3 extra pen.). Now I would rather see a 6"+ average range boost on all weapons this is a very good ability. Now is it as good as poison? Situation depending it can be. This ability combined with gude and doom really can spell doom for armies like Nid MC spam and other similar high toughness armies relying on a few tough models that are hard to kill. This may be a case of looking mediocre on paper at first since it is not as reliable as would be needed to rely on (Only 15% of wounds will ever be AP2 and auto wounding anyway) yet with a combination of powers and proper MSR/MRS (Move Shoot Run/ Move Run Shoot) the already nasty footdar close up shooting is only gonna get better..We must remember Eldar have fleet making this move a little better than most are thinking of it on paper..Making it a more viable army in competition than it already is. Guardians get a huge stat line boost. Besides a slight increase in range and exarch abilities Dire Avengers lose most of what made them cool to the point where its almost always better to take Guardians instead. Pathfinders needing an hq is a downside and normal Rangers are only cool because they are dirt cheap.

HQ wise we got a lot more diverse. The warlord traits have a few one offs which is OK. It only emphasizes the positioning and quick and sudden counter strike ability of the army.  Multiple different varieties of farseers with different abilities is nice as well is the multiple different corresponding charts they can roll on. The multiple charts with multiple abilities per roll is huge as one power seems to always have the anti version. So fortune/misfortune, guide/anti guide. This flexibility is a psychic boost I was not expecting all though we do lose all of our other perks that get replaced by weaker yet more modern versions. The Avatar got a huge boost as well and with Exarch abilities could be cool to run in a Wraithbone Construct themed build for Shiggles and Gits. Autarchs allow some serious reserves manipulation which is cool and Phoenix lords can unlock Aspects as troops. Wraithguard can still be made troops as well. All together we have a lot of serious FOC manipulation at our hands. I still see using the new versions of farseers and even Eldrad more often. I haven't heard anything on him points wise yet which worries me although he still is about the same if not better at ML 4. Warlocks got leaps and bounds better since they are all Level one psychers. Their chart is also pretty nasty taking these guys where and whenever possible is a must.

Aspect wise Dark Reapers got a ton better. They went back to their old form of using Rocket launchers and can even get skyfire. This combined with the ability to give fast shot to any exarch is pretty good. Warpspyders are a little bit better with the mono filament abilities. The flyers are mediocre at best since they are AV 10 all around but since it can be controlled by an exarch with exarch powers you can spend a bit of points to make it more efficient yet not more tough....so these guys will be probably left at home, especially with the anti-air abilities of Tau. The  bomber is just more expensive for the same weaknesses.  Banshees only got a point cheaper, yet they still are mediocre in todays game.

17 point jet bikes are very nice.

It seems Harlies went back to the limited range view on them which is odd....

Vehicles, although still expensive, got a pretty nice boost with holofields and normal shields giving them 4++ saves. Warwalkers having skyfire missiles is also pretty useful.

The Wraith units are the most interesting part of the codex. Wraithlords got a bit more expensive and unless the weapon got cheaper they are not getting better with only being S8 now. Yes this is lame as I like Wraithlords but it seems these guys might get left out except for themed armies. I might still take one since I own the models but I am not happy right now with the state they are in. Wraith Guard and the CCW version are 160 points for 5, which is good. Since they can become troops a high toughness with some pretty crazy high strength weapons is possible yet still expensive.

No I have yet to understand why a lot of Internet Armchair Generals are crapping on the Wraithknight. It is a 6 wound Wraithlord with a jump pack. Now for 240 points, aka the price of two wraithlords we get something that is just as tough to kill as two wraithlords except it has a jump pack and an invulnerable save. It also has access to way better weapons.If people are worried it can die too easily remember we can get a psychic power that gives it shrouding. Stack this with the possibility of fortune and keeping its tippy toes of the base in terrain and we have a 3+ re-roll-able cover save.....how is this easy to kill? It can avoid force weapons with the ability to jump pack around as well. IMHO this guy is an auto take for at least two spots. Combine the new weapons with the twin linking ability of scatter lasers  this guy is quite good in every aspect although some playtesting will be needed. As of now I think he will be better in practical use than he looks on paper.

Honestly I like the army. I can see myself running Eldrad and another Psycher for HQ's. Double blobs of guardians with some Dire Avenger units following them up. I might get a few small jetbike squads to replace my pathfinders. Beyond this I plan on still using Warpspyders. Possibly as many warlocks as I can fit in. I will bring two of the new Wraithknights and a Wraithlord or Reapers or D-cannons if they got a higher range. Will it work? Possibly....only time will tell....more on this later....


  1. I missed the part where PL make their respective aspects troops. Thought the Spirit Seer was the only FOC changing unit. I'm thinking Scorpions will be hitting the table top en masse then.

  2. I may have read that from a wrong source but I do remember it from the mass of rules leaks, I guess we will have to see

  3. Even without the phoenix lords, Eldar still have a tremendous amount of flexibility with their troop selections with up to 8 different squad types. Exciting times. I agree with most of what you said but for Avengers. I think they got a huge boost. for 170 points you get 10 avengers with bladestorm, run/shoot, fleet, counter attack, ws/bs/i 5 exarch that is 3++ in a challenge equiped with power weapon, 4+ 5++ saves for the entire squad. Even on the cheap for 130 points you get most of the above and still retain leadership 9.

    At any rate, I think the biggest challenge to the Eldar is letting go of past strategies and tactics. With the sweeping changes (such as BS 4 across the army) I believe it will play completely differently.