Thursday, August 13, 2009

Some Ulthwe tips for a reader

A while back, I met a fellow Ulthwe enthusiast at Oslo Miniature Games Club. He was in the process of fleshing out his army, and has some questions in that regard. For your reading pleasure, I've decided to post response here.

Viktor said:

I've started painting my Eldar guys, but I haven't a clue what to give the infantry and vehicles.

Which weapons should i give my Dire Avenger Exarch? What about the weapon platforms for the Guardian squads?

I want a Seer Council with a couple of Warlocks, and one Warlock in each Guardian squad. How should I kit them out?

I've written my list below. Should I make any changes to it? DO you have any tips on which weapons I should take?

Seer Council 388 pts
Farseer: Witchblade, Shuriken Pistol, Ghosthelm, Runes of Witnessing, Fortune
Farseer: Witchblade, Shuriken Pistol, Runes of Witnessing, Guide
Farseer: Witchblade, Shuriken Pistol, Ghosthelm, Runes of Witnessing, Guide, Mind War
Warlock: Close Combat Weapon, Shuriken Pistol, Augment, Runes of Witnessing
Warlock: Close Combat Weapon, Shuriken Pistol, Augment, Runes of Witnessing
Warlock: Close Combat Weapon, Shuriken Pistol, Embolden
Warlock: Close Combat Weapon, Shuriken Pistol, Enhance
Warlock: Close Combat Weapon, Shuriken Pistol
Warlock: Close Combat Weapon, Shuriken Pistol

8 Warp Spiders 176 pts

Guardian Defender Squad: 168 pts
10 Guardians
2 Crewmen and Eldar Missile Launcher
Warlock: Close Combat Weapon, Shuriken Pistol, Conceal

Guardian Defender Squad: 168 pts
10 Guardians
2 Crewmen and Eldar Missile Launcher
Warlock: Close Combat Weapon, Shuriken Pistol, Conceal

Guardian Defender Squad: 163 pts
10 Guardians
2 Crewmen and Star Cannon
Warlock: Close Combat Weapon, Shuriken Pistol, Conceal

5 Rangers 95 pts

Fast Attack:
1 Vyper with Bright Lance 65 pts
1 Vyper with Bright Lance 65 pts

Heavy Support:
Falcon: 210 pts
Pulse Laser, Star Cannon, Shuriken Cannon, Holo-field, Spirit Stones

Wraithlord: 120 pts
Bright Lance

3 War Walkers: 300 pts
2 Star Cannons each

Points total: 1998 pts

A comment from the guy I stole the list from:
What's really great with it is that everything except the Rangers can move and shoot, so when the enemy gets closer i can just go backwards and still fire att my full potential. Or if i have to claim an objective i can walk there in the last few turns and take it while still firing everything.

I appreciate any help from a fellow Ulthwe player!!

My response:
Thanks for writing in, Viktor! I don't see myself as an expert on competitive Ulthwe, but I have played quite a few games in a friendly setting.

First of all, your list is currently illegal. The list was written using the old Craftworld Eldar codex, which is outdated now. You should get the newest codex if you haven't already, and make your list out of that book.

HQ: You can have at most two Farseers. If you're going to field them on foot, I recommend taking Eldrad Ulthran. In fact, I rarely take two farseers. They are a support unit, and Eldrad is more than capable of supporting a fairly large Eldar army.

If you have some conversion skills, I'd recommend making a jetbike council. One Farseer with Fortune, Doom and Spirit Stones, six or seven Warlocks, 1 Enhance, 1 Embolden and the rest with Destructors. This unit can deal with pretty much anything in the game, is highly mobile and very resilient

A Seer Council on foot is pretty good, but they really need a transport, preferably a Falcon grav tank. My Seer Council is often like this:
  • Farseer w/Spirit Stones, Runes of Warding, Fortune, Doom, Singing Spear
  • 4 Warlocks w/Destructor and Witchblade
  • Warlock w/Embolden and Singing Spear
These guys can take out almost anything, and will rarely end up pinned if the Falcon crashes or if they suffer casualties.

Elites: Warp Spiders are great, but make sure they actually fulfill a role in the army. I haven't actually used them, but have played against them quite a few times. They are very effective, as long as the enemy heavy wepons have something else to shoot at. Keeping them away from assaults and small arms fire is often pretty easy, though.

Troops: Being Ulthwe, we need Guardians! Ten guys with a heavy weapon is great, but their greates weakness is morale. Lose three, and they have to take a Morale Check. As the Guardians will likely be in cover, they really don't need Conceal. They need Embolden! Cheaper and better.

Sneaky tip: If you take 12 Guardians and a Warlock, you have 13 models in the unit. A morale check from 25 % casualties is taken at 4 models lost. This is unlikely in a single round of shooting if they have sufficient cover, seeing as the Guardians often are a low-priotiry target.

I feel that the Bright Lance is the best weapon for them. With ten models, good cover and Embolden, they are a real pain for your opponent to get rid of, and a constant threat to his vehicles.

The Rangers really should be upgraded to Pathfinders. Getting that 2+ cover save is golden!

You ask about Dire Avengers, but they aren't in your list. I use them sometimes, and find that the Exarch is best kitted out with dual Shuriken Catapults and the Bladestorm power. They can be a pretty good tarpit against some enemies with Shimmershield, but far from all of the nasty gribblies out there.

Fast Attack: I really like Vypers, but they are very easy kill points. I often use two with Bright Lances myself. If you keep them in reserve, they can keep out of the worst trouble and get side shots on enemy armour.

Heavy Support: If you want a Wraithlord, take two. Also, a single Falcon will be shot out of the sky really fast. I often use a Wave Serpent tag-teaming with my Falcon, conserving my Heavy Support slots, and ensuring that at least one side of the Falcon will be safe from melta weapons. Weapon-wise, I recommend that you take only a single Shuriken Cannon on the Falcon, and use the Pulse Laser most of the time.

Three War Walkers with Star Cannons were great in 4th edition, but in this edition, each gun has one shot less, is more expensive, and because of easy cover saves . I take Scatter Lasers instead. Two shots more and much cheaper. Volume of shots are generally more important than armour piercing capabilities, especially against light transports and troops in cover.

General tips: You should consider more vehicles and Storm Guardians.

Flamers/Melta are more awesome than ever, Storm Guardians can have both. For a multi-purpose unit, take two Fusion guns and a Warlock with Destructor. Following up the shooting with a charge can be desvastation against the right foe. If you decide to let the Seer Council and Defenders do anti-tank, you can give the Storm Guardians two flamers. This will effectively eat up over 10 orks or a combat squad of Space Marines in a single round of shooting. Add in the fire from their transport and some supporting element, eliminating a full 30-ork mob in a turn is not especially difficult.

Vehicles are always good, and the Eldar ones are better than most. The Defender Guardians doesn't need transportation in my opinion, but Storm Guardians and the Seer Council do. With transports equipped with Star Engines, you can do some ridiculous objective grabs late game. Even in Kill Point missions, the Eldar vehicles are great because they can take a lot more punishment than the other races' transport vehicles.