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PostPosted: Mon Jan 05, 2015 11:42 pm 
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The Cavalry Prince
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Thanks very much chaps.

Ferny, SA pretty much answered your question as I would. 3++ massively swings it - without that he'd be way too unreliable. Then you add in WS6 and a bunch of combat buffs and heal spells, plus AP attacks from a friendly unit banner, and he's properly decent (remember my archmage ends up in combat in every game I play and has yet to be killed in combat - a 20" base with a 3++ and access to heal spells is hard to grind down).

SA, for sure you'd be nuts to run solo characters if you're riding around under people's guns. If they're in range and dangerous (BS weapons you can take cover from), then you bunker up. Solo'ing your characters is always a risk/reward exercise rather than doctrine. The doctrine merely is to remember that you always have the option. In that last lizardman game, my opponent had tonnes of shooting but, of course, only a tiny proportion of it was ever in range of my more vulnerable heroes, and none of it was armour piercing. If I'm up against dwarfs, you better believe I'm deploying my characters with units! What I've yet to try, but am keen to, is deploying the BSB with the reavers or phoenix guard against war machines to tempt some cannonballs away from the silver helms for a turn.

One redirector, yep. Partly because I get to shoot a lot more chaff off than I used to, and indeed enemy shooting units, so I'm much less liable to have to rush forward with my whole force or else work for combo-charges with wide-fronted units. Having fewer, harder units who can take charges and have better ranged support, plus movement buffs, makes having my own chaff less important. Facing lots of flyers, and being offered more points in lords, was pretty much the nail in the coffin. I won't argue that you can't always use two eagles for something good (rear charging a character in a challenge was always a good trick), but I would say I can survive without them, and as for our core choices I've always found archers too valuable to swap a chunk out for one more chaff drop (we've covered this ad nauseam in recent pages). The one unit of reavers I have is important most of all for out-charging cavalry buses. If you husband the unit a little, keep it in cover, it's pretty easy to keep it alive long enough to do the job.

Andros, I agree entirely with your analysis of the loremaster's casting abilities. The Book certainly does make him a better caster, and you're also right to say that a major reason I don't give it to him is because it would significantly weaken my dispelling. I think it's a toss-up as to which ability is more beneficial - a difficult enough decision that I ummed and aah'd about it for ages. But, having just lost the Scroll of Shielding, my defence felt light and I didn't want to chip away at it any more. There are other reasons, though, for why I kept the Book on the archmage. First, Shield of Saphery is vital to the performance of the phoenix guard and indeed the loremaster himself. If only one spell goes off, it should ideally give me +1 ward save too. Secondly, with a few exceptions (chiefly Searing Doom), High magic has those hard counter spells that absolutely need to go off when you need them: Walk against gunlines, Apotheosis on a wounded prince, drain magic against buffed units, Convocation against large units and Unforging against so many nasty character builds. A fair criticism of High magic is that its spells are situational outside of the magic missiles, Hand of Glory and ward saves. The flip side is that, when you want these spells to go off they really really matter (especially the damage spells, for which you have limited time), albeit they don't need 6 dicing and so are less likely to roll the single 6 that makes the Book dangerous. Conversely, at least half of High spells can be cast on one dice by the +5 archmage. I wouldn't do this without a re-roll but, with a re-roll, it's doable for a small phase. By contrast there are very few spells the loremaster can only throw one dice at (Miasma aaand.. Shem's?) which are likely to be so beneficial (ward save included). Finally, there's the loremaster's other kit. If I took the book for him, I'd have to lose the ogre blade. Alongside the AP banner, it's a fantastic weapon against any unit and still leaves me plenty of room for the essential merwyrm shield and other toys (here the cloak), plus scroll. If I took the Book, I'd have to downgrade. Probably the build I would try, continuing the theme we've been discussing, would be Book, Sword of Anti-Heroes and Merwyrm Shield. Worth a go, perhaps (making phoenix guard my go-to unit for anti-deathstar work), and workable all-comers because 3+ phoenix guard will beat almost any unit that doesn't have 2+ characters. I may indeed end up with this build and will certainly try it. For now, I do like the ogre blade as Str6 attacks are always a useful addition to Str4 phoenix guard or, indeed, archers being threatened by nasty single models (where Anti-Heroes is generally less useful). Both weapons have good uses in my list, so I suppose how my magic phase works will end up being the deciding factor. I guess we'll see! Good thoughts anyway - I'll keep an eye on how my magic phases work out and get back to you.

Thanks,

S

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 9:23 am 
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Thank you for your answer.
To be honest, I'm not really sure what build I like the most myself. I can really see the benefit of having the loremaster with an ogreblade + razor standard as it makes the phoenix guard able to tackle 1+ amour saves way better.
I don't know about your meta, but mine I feel is dominated by elves - especially wood elves. So I always have them in mind when I make an army list for a tournament. So being able to throw those magic missiles (shems and fireball) and miasma his waywatchers on one single dice is pretty amazing. And I simply just don't feel comfortable doing it without the book.
However, as I said I really like the fact that your loremaster also has another purpose outside his casting abilities. I'll look forward to see how your setup fares :) .


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 06, 2015 11:02 am 
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I've seen a few lists where redirectors are kind of regarded as a useful option but not essential. So they might tack one on if they feel like it. Looking at the UK Masters lists in particular there are several with a single block of Core infantry plus assorted terrifying characters and as said, maybe the odd eagle or unit of Chaos Hounds.

I like the Loremaster Seredain, I prefer the list with him in to the previous one. Seems like a good fit with High Magic. Also, I would seek to put my Treeman into the PG and take a wound per phase maybe. With the Loremaster that's two wounds, which changes things.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 09, 2015 10:38 am 
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First and foremost, congrats on a very well laid log and amazing ideas. I remember reading your logs back when I got in competitive WHFB with our previous book, and finding the cavalry prince idea compelling and brilliant.

I was checking your army list out, and saw this:

Seredain wrote:
Battle Standard Bearer - Great Weapon, Dragon Armour, Barded Elven Steed, Featherfoe Torc, Charmed Shield, Golden Crown.
174 points


I assume it's missing the Star Lance? the points fit, at least, as does him having both a great weapon and a shield. It looks fairly interesting, too. Survibable by himself for a turn or two, and can lay the hurt like no tomorrow.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 09, 2015 2:36 pm 
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What's there is 50pts of magic items already.

I'm guessing this guy sits in the second rank of the bus because he isn't kitted out to survive a grind.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 09, 2015 2:58 pm 
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SpellArcher wrote:
What's there is 50pts of magic items already.

I'm guessing this guy sits in the second rank of the bus because he isn't kitted out to survive a grind.



No I think he is missing the Star Lance. FfT = 5 CS = 5 and GC = 10. Star Lance fits perfect.

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PostPosted: Fri Jan 09, 2015 4:39 pm 
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I guess there's some misunderstanding here:

Featherfoe Torc: 35 pts

Pidgeon Plucker Pendant: 5 pts

;)


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 09, 2015 11:23 pm 
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NonnoSte wrote:
I guess there's some misunderstanding here:

Featherfoe Torc: 35 pts

Pidgeon Plucker Pendant: 5 pts

;)


Eps. That's right. I've been eyeing the Featherfoe Torc lately too, but I get them mixed out quite a lot. I guess the shield was the problem. Still, GCoA, Charmed Shield, Star Lance, Great Weapon and Pidgeon Plucker Pendant has some kind of merit, too, though more as a targeted missile that can threaten big flying monsters in a hurry.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 10, 2015 4:54 pm 
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Previous answer was great, I was happily surprised!
That is training, we're training here to then could enjoy the match plenty. Because of that I admire you, really few warhammer gamers I know take seriously the training. I falled in love with you (still in Warhammer context) first time I saw one of your posts organized with Subtitles. That's quality!

My High Elf career as General

Warhammer fascined me with 14 years old. Specially High Elves looked like the noble and proud warrior I always want to become on.
Always tried to take the game as competitive as I could, and three years earlier I met the Cavalry Prince army in Ulthuan (14 swordmasters, 1 RBT !).
I played always a copy of it, engineered tactics with notebook and pen, writting...
I stopped playing when you turned to the Phoenix Guard heavy infantry choice -Seredain, how can you do that? Each swordmaster model is a single master! They always fascinate me.
I will continue the second way of your army:

Lances of Hoeth -High Magic, swordmasters, cavalry lances, bolts and arrows

It was my first time -in a 3 match long tournament- using the variation proposed in the previous post -without the Prince, still with swordmasters-.

So, I have never met a character army! I want to see battle reports.

Seredain, here you have the variation of the Cavalry Prince. Thank you for giving me space here. I think I'm opening my own blog, I just start here because this it's mother land.

Lances of Hoeth 2400p

Archmage - High Magic lvl 4, Book of Hoeth, T. Endurance - 305p

Cavalry Archmage - High Magic lvl 3, barded steed, D. Scroll, T. Preservation, K. Fury Ring - 307p

Bsb - barded steed, Sword of Might, E. Shield, T. Protection, Iron. Icon, dragon armour - 165p

10 Silver Helms - shields, full command - 260p
5 Ellyrian Reavers - 80p
22 Archers - standard, musician - 240p

4 Bolt Thrower - 280p

Great Eagle - 50p

20 Swordmasters - standard, champion - 280p

6 Dragon Princes - full command - 204p

2191p +[bigger swordmasters/DPs, characters, etc]

Tactic: shooting + counter-attack

Like the original Cavalry Prince army, Lances of Hoeth is intended to punish from range in early turns. Follows the approachment and board control to finish the game with a glorious combo-charge in a good situation. Lances of Hoeth army lose early close combat killing power as gaining the following advantage:

Magic: 8 High spells and Book of Hoeth. The oponent has to deal with a powerful spell launcher (cavalry-Archmage) while having an eye on the other one 1-dice launching Archmage. When -thanks to the spell variety- they can switch the role trickly.

Cavalry and versatility: after years using the Cavalry Prince army, I began to flee with heavy cavalry. I mean to deliberately take that tactic to beat the oponent; do a controlled safe movement.

A heavy cavalry unit unable to move during a turn when rallied is not a disadvantage in this army but a tactical redeployment to itself to face the next threat (maybe a different target).Oponent's failed charge allows us more ranged fire (even a rallied Cavalry-Archmage's spells).
Even never rallying the fleeing cavalry the advantage taken can be still more important -when in turn 1 my Silver Helms fled (off the table) from a charging Gorebeast nurgle chariot (center deployed) which fail-charges 3", enough to safe-charge it with 3x2 Dragon Princes in the heart of the rushing WoC army, overrun with no counter-charges to finally have in the second turn six Dragon Princes moving 18" in enemy armie's rear-.

The Cavalry-Archmage can turn heavy cavalry in tanks (High Magic, dragon armour, Ironcurse Icon). The tank is a threat in close combat, taking few wounds and gaining few res. points with charge and wounds.
Most of the enemy characters are unable to challenge-kill instantly the 3++ Carchmage and are weak to the tank's res.

Heavy cavalry has the first four long turns to approach the enemy, eat chaff, incite him to charge, control the board, carry characters safely and of course wait for the best charging chance to put a serious damage.

Infantry. The killing power: while the 'special forces' look with a few luck to make a huge tactical advantage as explained above, the infantry composed by the archers, bolt throwers and swordmasters will not fail you. Trust in them to do a big damage output.

Thank you for reading and commenting, for giving me this space where I train myself.
No problem if I have to move it to another place.

Sutilar

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 12, 2015 4:23 pm 
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Thanks chaps.

Yup - bad news - featherfoe torc is a real investment - 35 points. Building the BSB around the item is therefore pretty straightforward - you cram in as much defence as possible and give him a mundane weapon of your choice. On balance, I think the great weapon may be a mistake - losing ASF drastically weakens his defence against other ASF units, so I think I'll reinstate the halberd (which is what I've used up to date).

The Featherfoe BSB as Quarterback

I've only had maybe 3 games with this guy in his current form and, thus far, I have yet to field him in the bus (or indeed the bus itself at all - I've fielded a silver helm unit). As you said SA, this guy isn't much of a frontline fighter in grinds. Not in the helms anyway. In the phoenix guard he gets the ward save buff from the archmage, and that is something I could probably live with given the phoenix guard are much more reliable backup in combat than the silver helms. Within the helms, the fact is that the new noble pretty much takes over from where the old BSB build left - off - not surprising since his defensive kit is precisely the same. As part of a bus, this BSB is a second-rank character who takes the opportunity to come forward when he gets the chance to kill stuff without dying.

In other contexts, though, he's been really useful as a standalone fighter standing guard over the archers or running solo playing a quarterback role behind my main units. Here he's more likely to come into contact with light units, which he can straight-up beat, and solo heroes. The weak ones he can kill and the less weak ones he can tank for a round and break with his extra static res. This is also, of course, where he's likely to meet flying units, including heroes, for whom he's a really nasty surprise. Previously I relied on bolt throwers to cover this role - having the flexible cavalry character on hand as well is a big jump in capability. In the context I wonder if a lance wouldn't be the right weapon for him, so he can play a bit more of the hunter-killer role but, since I don't have the points for it, I'm satisfied that the halberd brings more all-round utility for when he's riding alongside the archers or phoenix guard. In any case, in such a role he's easily able to keep the whole army in his bubble for much longer. As long as the enemy doesn't have cannons (and even if they do should I want to distract shots from the bus), this guy works really well as a solo support-combat character. Being able to leave a cheaper and less important noble to the grinding work alongside the prince, separating to a new degree the sometimes mutually exclusive roles of standard and sword, is an added benefit.


SA & Andros, it's single heroes, monsters and knight units that make me feel the ogre blade is the one to have on the loremaster. If I'm playing defensive then this allone turns the archers from being a have-a-go basket of points into a much more dangerous proposition. If my BSB and loremaster are with the archers then, suddenly, there's no good place for a chimera to attack except the bolt throwers. The amount of liberty this gives you is immense, because you don't need to waste anywhere near as much mental energy second-guessing where those flying monsters are going to go. If your army presents only bad options, it forces their hand to a degree that the controlling player is much more likely to make mistakes. And of course, in a closed-lists environment, few will suspect I have the torc so even good players can find themselves throwing points away by going after what they might see as soft points. Ogre blade, merwyrm shield and torc really changes things.

Sutilar, I really like the army concept - good shooting, superb board control and I think 7 levels (why not 8?) of high magic would give you great control over the magic phase - and movement phase too (much easier to flee with heavy cavalry if you know you can Walk them back into position, eh?). There are a couple of things I'd tweak, I think. Is 2200 the top limit or is there more in the bank to spend..? For starters, you don't need dragon armour as well as the talisman of protectionon your BSB. Secondly, I'd really look to get Banner of the World Dragon n the swordmasters. They're your single most important combat unit and leaving them without a magic flag feels risky. Since you also have a caster in the unit (who will occasionally want to throw 5 or 6 dice at something), having the miscast protection for the unit could also be a lifesaver. This is the major part of why I switched to phpenix guard, by the way. They don't have the same destructive capability as the swords, but they do allow you to throw all your dice at one spell without exposing the unit. Swords, by contrast, really benefit from spam-casting, so they slightly restrict your options in the magic phase during those turns when defence is important.

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 13, 2015 1:35 pm 
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I run the BSB with Great Weapon and while I take the point about vulnerability to ASF, the enemy is only re-rolling to hit if he is I7+. So pretty much only elf characters and as said, in your guy's case those peg heroes run into the Torc Seredain. Can the bus function without the BSB on hand to provide re-rolls? At first I thought swap the kit with the Noble and let him do the 'sweeper' job but I guess that requires the re-roll.

As an aside, I'd be tempted to use the template on those archers with the Chimaera, if they're packing characters. Though it will be likely be eating bolts afterwards, I think it's up to the WoC player to keep the pressure on by rushing other stuff forwards too. Again, though, will we see fewer Chimaeras now that WoC can simply spam characters instead?

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 14, 2015 7:13 pm 
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My armies point limit is 2400, the 2191 shown in my post is the base of the army, then it has different options to complete the list.

Now I realize how much need swordmasters the World Dragon flag. My consecuenced next point is the unit (20) is too small because each model died takes away an attack and when finally arrive to close combat don't perform like I look to.
In order of exploiting it's killing power I think about fielding 25 model unit with the banner of World Dragon. When performing in ranks of 7 with the Archmage inside they add the third ranks resolution point, but the best difference is to take an enemy charge in 5x5 ranks.
The other side is: is 405 points unit too big? Which disadvantages and risks carry it?

Thinking about your new choice of Loremaster, I see it amazing! It has Miasma! That works great with High Magic. Should it have also a place in my army...

Forward: about this points -and starting my own blog- I built again the army.

Lances of Hoeth 2400p -High Magic,
Swordmasters, cavalry lances, bolts and arrows

Cavalry Archmage Sutilar – High Magic lvl 4,
barded steed, dispel scroll, talisman of
preservation, ironcurse icon – 322p

Infantry Archmage Belannaer – High Magic lvl 4,
book of hoeth, talisman of endurance – 305p

Battle Standard Bearer Sagasti – barded steed,
dragon armour, lance, featherfoe torc, charmed
shield, golden crown of atrazar – 176p

Noble Sartain – barded steed, dragon armour,
lance, enchanted shield, dawnstone, potion of
foolhardiness – 136p

10 Silver Helms – shields, full command – 260p

5 Ellyrian Reavers – 80p

23 Archers – full command – 260p

4 Repeater Bolt Thrower – 280p

25 Swordmasters – full command, banner of the
World Dragon – 405p

5 Dragon Princes – standard, champion,
flamming banner – 175p

-2399p

How is going my army? What do you think? I'm happy of being adviced by every commander.

The Bsb Quarterback

I falled in love with him. Using it more conservatively it gains huge versatility. Cover infantry from the back (safe thanks to his 'double' Charmed Shield), join the Bus or even the infantry to light on the Featherfoe Torc or attack running solo like a MSU.
I steal it with your permission. It even fits better in my army, which performs slower.

Cavalry Archmage + bodyguard Noble Sartain

I'm trying to combine this pair to run both together (or both inside a cavalry unit) in order of tanking enemy hard characters.
In an example, Sartain and the C Archmage (in pair together) are charged by the enemy lord which fights my bodyguard noble in a duel -boosted with High Magic and ward saves-.
Is a Noble with 1+ rr, 4++ able to handle a Chaos lord, or another terrifieng character?

Sutilar

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 19, 2015 11:49 pm 
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SA, that's a good point actually. I had in mind enemy cowboy heroes but really that just comes down to dark elves and here I could use the Str 6 against the 1+ save. I like too that the halberd gives you the reliability but, from the other point of view, the Str 6 gives you a better chance of getting lucky if you make all those hits. Since I've got a couple of spells now to improve those hitting chances against WS6+ opponents, I suppose the great weapon should be a reliable enough. But man I hate missing rolls to hit!

I've seen chimeras absolutely blitz the archer unit with a breath template. Pretty much every time it sees the end of them as a serious unit. The problem for the chaos player is that this doesn't ever kill the archers and, with Hand of Glory and Walk Between Worlds to hand, I can just hop them away to at least temporary safety and force the chimera to waste at least another two turns chasing them and spend another two turns getting shot at and magicked. It's not ideal, because charging archers typically means putting your monster in a place and at an sgle of my choosing (assuming the monster takes the shortest route), but if it wants to kill hem it's probably best for the chimera to use it's breath weapon in combat where it can stay safe from shooting and have a chance of breaking the archers for all the points. Of course, that'll take at least a couple of rounds and, against these sorts of lists, I'm probably fielding the loremaster in this unit. The ogre blade and a combat buff or two have a lot to say in a matchup like this.

Sutilar, I like the list changes. Tremendous board control and all those ward buffs sould give your swords and knights some real backbone. You're right, I think, to increase the swordmasters in size a little. I'm not fan of spending points on massive infantry units, but you get better value out of your power dice if you're buffing the ward save of a unit more worthy of the investment. The only thing that this list seems to lack is a reliable source of high strength attacks to take out heavy armour. You have the bolt throwers and two lances on your nobility, but these obviously don't work over many rounds of combat. I can see how your lance noble keeps fighting with his excellent defence - I like his build - but how do you take on the heavy stuff? Arcane Unforging and bolt throwers I guess?

Glad you like the BSB! for the first time, last week, I got to see how he works deployed in the phoenix guard when my opponent has two cannons. It's late and I have to up early, but I'll do a quick summary tomorrow.

Thanks for reading,

S

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PostPosted: Tue Jan 20, 2015 12:00 pm 
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Hmm, bit of Theoryhammer here but what if the WoC player takes a couple of units of Horsemen or Hounds and screens them at first. Then he goes for the archers with the Chimaera. If all goes well, he takes off 2/3 of the unit and then the redirectors come out to play. The RBT get a bit annoyed at having to spend time on them.

Don't tell me...Hand of Glory laughs at the cover mods?

:)

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 7:56 pm 
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SA, I think the chimeras are always too tall to get any cover save from the likes of marauder horse or warhounds. But, in any case, I always shoot the chaff on turn 1 regardless. A ground based army like mine can be pinned down by these units for a turn and this is exactly what you don't want against a flying list which can gang up on one unit while the others are parylized. T1 you shoot the nearby chaff to death, Turn 2 you pick your targets. Sometimes I don't shoot chimeras at all in the early turns because there are more dangerous things around. In my experience, the monsters tend to go after the repeater bolt throwers or the archers. You job is to have counter-charges ready to punish them when they do that. Assuming the enemy army doesn't have hell cannons, this is when it often makes sense to run the prince solo. Of course, usually he's got bigger fish to fry, but if I leave the archmage with the phoenix guard and shift the BSB and loremaster to the archers, suddenly there's no good place for chimeras to land except my war machines and reavers even if the prince is leading charges elsewhere. Often, then, shooting chimeras to death by Turn 3 is less important than simply giving them only bad options when it comes to charge opportunities. For that, your army needs to be able to move and, for that, you need to kill the chaff.

Battle Summary - Ogres

So as I said I fought against an ogre army last week. An unusual list, this - only a BSB and firebelly (scroll and ruby ring) in characters. The beef was two units of 11 ironguts in two ranks, a unit of 8 leadbelchers, 8 manesters (pistols, poison, stubborn), 4 mournfang and 2 ironblasters. I dropped the phoenix guard first, front and centre as a straight-up challenge, and he followed suit with both irongut units (one character in each) in the centre, leadbelchers opposite my left and mournfang+maneaters opposite my right. Facing them were my helms, in 2 ranks with the prince and OTS noble and, on the far side just of the phoenix guard, stood the archers with my bolt throwers scsttered about, again mostly on the left. His ironblasters were rolling around in hard cover behind his units - I hate those things. With them in mind, I dropped the BSB into the phoenix guard. He could bounce a couple of cannonballs before marching out of that unit to join the helms about 10" away should he need the cover - if my helms weren't getting shot, I would be happy.

I got first turn and decided to target his shooting phase. The archers and 3 bolt throwers ripped 7 wounds off the leadbelchers while the archmage threw +1 movement onto the knights (who advanced in their wood a little to invite a long charge and some dangerous terrain tests from the mournfang) and got the 3++ for the guard. The loremaster reduced the ballistic skill of the maneaters by 2, and cast iceshard blizzard on an ironblaster. My plan was simple: if I neutralised the ogre shooting as best as I could, I reckoned on my character-heavy combat units besting his character-lite ogres. And it worked - the manesters couldn't shoot the knights because of miasma, and so had to take their chances with a Turn 2 flank charge once the mournfang had failed a chsrge, then fled a counter-charge from the helms (continued off the table). The prince and noble made way to the flank and carved them up, with the helms reforming from round 2, over 4 rounds of combat. The phoenix guard pumped loads of missiles into the ironguts until the latter felt forced to charge at long range - one unit made it in, got thoroughly beaten, broke and ran, to be replaced by the other irongut unit, this time charging in with an ironblaster alongside. The 3++ phoenix guard bounced them too, did a great number of wounds and broke them, killing the BSB. Turn 4 ends and my infsntry and cavalry are running amok, so my opponent concedes.

Both the BSB and loremaster added a tremendous amount of damage output to the gusrd unit - even though my magic phase had by this point started sucking badly (4 dice unforging, with re-roll failed... stuff like that - a lot). Thankfully, my own shooting was enough of a threat that the ironblasters, leadbelchers and firebelly were fully occupied in trying to silence it, and this kept my two main units unmolested. An ogre cannon eventually switched to my BSB, who bounced the shot and so spared another shot unto the helms, preserving those crucial bodies to cover the prince. By the time I got in amongst the ogre units with an unmolested knight bus and guard mini-star, it was pretty much over. There are harder ogre lists out there, but controlling the conduct of the ranged war in the early turns was nonetheless a fresh experience against a shooting-heavy ogre list and really did act as the best protection for my knights against successful Turn 6 cannon-sniping.

Ch-ch-changes

First, the BSB gets his great weapon back - with apologies to SA. Nothing else needs changing about this guy because frankly, even without flyers on the board to run into his featherfoe torc, he easily pulled his weight. Charmed shield, golden crown, Shield of Saphery and the Hand of Glory/Miasma/Iceshard treble vs WS3 troops really gave him excellent protection, while the AP banner makes him deadly in combat. If flyers aren't on the table and you don't want to be MSU'ing the characters for some other reason, the phoenix guard is the place for him. In particular, since the guard were in the centre of the army, the Ld re-roll got much better coverage than it would have when deployed with the knights on the flank. When the knights moved off, they stayed Ld 10 and the remaining army kept the re-roll for solid leadership. By comparison, the outlying ogre units found their panic tests much dicier (they actually passed all of them but, odds on, they shouldn't have). In all, this was a very solid performance.

Top marks also go to the loremaster. The synergy between him and his unit was fantastic - AP on his Str 6 attacks wasn't so necessary against ogres, but it was ridiculously good value to have a 3+ ward save granted by a 15 point shield and, again, an almost guarenteed -1 to hit for the ironguts trying to slap him after my magic phase had done its work. My opponent just could not take him down and he added valuable wounds to a tanky unit which, once down to half strength, has limited damage output.

Separately, the combined achmage/loremaster phase was just so effective, even though a couple of turns screwed me over on dice. In any given situation, this phase can do anything. Or rather, almost anything. The one asset it lacked, as compared with my old phase, was in the magic missile departmemt. The short point is that the basic soul quench is unbelievably good value. 2d6 hits for 3+ to cast, even without the ward buff, is an absolute steal. Throwing one dice at the end of the magic phase puts your opponent under real pressure - especially if he knows you're going to do it. In order to obtain the same number of hits the loremaster needs to spend three times the power dice. What fireball and shem's give you are other things which are useful in particular circumstances - range and flaming plus, in Shem's case, the access to high strength hits. But if your target is the unit you've pointed your phoenix guard at, or the one next to it, soul quench gets you loads more bang for your buck. Something else I noticed was that the Book of Hoeth is of more limited value in a magic phase where plenty of your dice are going to the loremaster. Further, the situational nature of spells like Unforging, Dain Magic and Walk heighten the importance of one particular cast at one particular time, whereas the Book spreads its effect over several casts. The exception is the spells you want to 1-dice spam but, for me, that is only Soul Quench and, when carrying the Book, the archmage can only have one copy of this spell. Of course you could cast the big version, but your +5 to cast doesn't scale up and so, for double the hits you'll end up throwing 4 times the dice.

This is search for re-improved missile economy and the ability to surge a crucial high spell at a crucial moment (my failed Walk cast left my knights open to a flank shot from an ironblaster which, thankfully, Iceshard Blizzard prevented), made me decide to switch up my casters' items. So I dropped the Book on the archmage and added the Ring of Fury and the Power Stone. This freed up 10 points and so allowed to me add another hard counter element to the army: to replace the Cloak of Beards with the Gem of Sunfire. So, if I want to fireball a war machine, searing doom an ironblaster or kill Kairos with Shem's, this item becomes fantastic (the difference between wounding on 5s instead of 6s, or 2s instead of 3s, is huge). As far as I can see, there is no stipulation on when you pop the gem so, presumably, I'd be free to successfully cast a spell, roll the number of hits and then pop it before rolling to wound, to ensure it earned its points. Suddenly, those situational missiles from the loremaster have the ability to be much, much more powerful and, with that, it's probably fair to say that I now have a magic phase which is both tactically flexible and inclusive of hard counters to most of the big nasties I'm likely to face. The only question will be how much I miss the Book in defence. Here, it benefits from 100% of your dice and so really shines. I'll be keeping an eye on my dispelling, for sure.

Work is likely going to be a nightmare for at least a week but, when I get a game in again, you'll hear about it.

Thanks for reading,

S

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Last edited by Seredain on Mon Jan 26, 2015 11:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Jan 24, 2015 10:43 pm 
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No, no! The idea is to screen the chaff with the hard WoC units, not the other way round Seredain! That way it might still be alive for mid-game, when he needs it.

The BSB thing is interesting. For a long time I bemoaned my guy's lack of impact on the game. On foot, in the central unit of Eternal Guard, his re-roll coverage was excellent. But EG are so squishy, that 3 S6 attacks didn't make much of a difference. Horsing him in a unit with a decent save, made those attacks more effective. But not being able to support a blocking unit on a defensive flank is a real issue now. In contrast, those attacks make some difference to the PG. But again, a lost combat for your Prince could see him testing on a 7 or 8 maybe?

How's the tourney schedule going? Seen this?

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2015 11:22 am 
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Oh that! Haha sorry I mis-read you. I've seen that a bit too but it hasn't bothered me too much. Yes, Hand of Glory on the archers (and now a long range fireball) allow me to reach out to these units, but when they're deployed like this the truth is they're much less of a concern. They're slower than the flyers, and no faster than skullcrushers so, if they're parked behind these units (and don't vanguard infront), there's not a lot they can do to stop me charging these units. If there's no chaff that's posing a block-threat, then you're free to shoot something else. I suppose hide n seek chaff become more of sn issue where they're guarding a backline caster bunker that you really want to get to. Here, sure you're looking for Hand and magic missiles to step in and help out. Reavers too - ASF spears are a really good way to clear out warrior chaff and, if this saves your archers a round of shooting, so much the better.

As for the prince/BSB/OTS noble, wherher or not you want to combo them together is really about the match-up you're facing. Stuff like monstrous cavalry you can character wall against with the prince, noble and high helm but yeah it's worth just keeping an eye on the averages to see if the BSB's attacks and flag will make an important difference. Hence again why my tendancy will probably remain to keep the guard and knights pretty close to each other. On balance I'd usually rather not load up the helms, though. In combat terms the noble replaces the BSB and, usually, it's the re-roll that's the important thing. If there is a tough unit in the enemy army, the phoenix guard are a better front-on solution than the helms. With the guard firmed up into a solid centre for the army, the helms therefore become freer to go after those smaller, specialist/high toughness units before working their way toward the flank of the enemy centre in the late game. And this is exactly how I like to use them since it allows hou to take advantage of all theor movement. The phoenix guard are the main phalanx in this setup rather than auxiliary support for the knights.

My tourney schedule is waaaaay poor. Dom's been telling me off for it. I'll take a look...

Some ET eh... I guess this is the part where I trade in my own archers and probably reavers for a juicy block of poisoned wood elf archers? I gave my Khaine book away but I recall that martial prowess now means we get to fight in an extra rank also with the benefits of murderous prowess? If elf legion is allowed, that's hard to turn down.

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2015 11:39 am 
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Seredain, so how does your roster look atm?

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 25, 2015 11:44 am 
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What is the 'standard' WoC army these days I wonder? The block of Tzeentch Warriors with Blasted Standard seems to be quite popular now because he can hide the mounted characters in it if necessary. I'm not seeing Skullcrushers for example, so much.

That's something that struck me about your PG Seredain. They're a strong unit but a Leadership test for them, even with Ld9, looks a bit chancey without the BSB within 12". How often is that a scenario? I guess because both this unit and the Helms are strong in combat, a paired advance is hard for most armies to resist. But are there games where you'd really rather split them up?

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 26, 2015 11:32 am 
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I like the way you are taking about your characters and units combining and supporting each other. Since the new Bsb have a place in the infantry against lots of comers the army gains versatility, and as you said freeing up the Bus cavalry of being close to the Phoenix Guard, which needs leadership support.
That was a molesting limitation I realized from the first games I played with the Cavalry Prince army list. It remained in loads of games, measuring 12" from the infantry of a Bus cavalry able to move more than 18" each turn.

Now changing the army list lightly - Bsb build up change to charmed shield and golden crown - this guy gains versatility.
And now you can deploy two independent close combat units which can envelop the oponent, turn by turn by making distance from each other.

I'm changing my army Lances of Hoeth in order to fill the lack of that constant high strength. It looks deadly, the most agressive version of the Cavalry Prince. But first I need to do battles!

Waiting for battle reports,

Sutilar

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 26, 2015 11:35 pm 
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Galharen wrote:
Seredain, so how does your roster look atm?

Hey Galharen,

After the latest little tweaks, the roster is as follows:


Prince - Dragon Armour, Shield, Barded Elven Steed, Giant Blade, Dragon Helm, Dawnstone, Ironcurse Icon.
290 points

Archmage - Level 4, High Magic, Talisman of Preservation, Power Stone, Ring of Khaine's Fury.
310 points

Loremaster - Ogre Blade, Merwyrm Shield, Dispel Scroll, Gem of Sunfire.
330 points

Battle Standard Bearer - Great Weapon, Dragon Armour, Barded Elven Steed, Featherfoe Torc, Charmed Shield, Golden Crown.
174 points

Noble - Dragon Armour, Barded Elven Steed, Sword of Might, Enchanted Shield, Luckstone, Other Trickster’s Shard.
140 points

12 Silver Helms - High Helm, Musician, Standard Bearer, Shields.
306 points

21 Archers - Hawkeye, Musician, Standard Bearer.
240 points

5 Reaver Knights
80 points

19 Phoenix Guard - Keeper, Standard Bearer, Razor Standard.
350 points

4 Repeater Bolt Throwers
280 points

= 2500 points


As a little experiment, I might try a lance and the Ring of Fury on the OTS noble instead of the shard - something to buff the helms' ward save against machines or charges from enemy units when my own charges fail. A way, also, of bringing different enemy units into range (though to the same degree this is counter-intuitive since, if the phoenix guard are in range for one soul quench, they will be within range for two soul quenches). This would be a budget way of providing the prince with some boosted protection as was granted by the lost high mage. It would also make the noble a magnificently flexible MSU unit in his own right. It sounds fun so I may give it a go albeit staying aggressive and keeping the shard feels better, for now. In any case, if I can survive with the basic magic defence I currently have, I prefer to have the Ring of Fury than not, so the same basic set-up above should see a few games.

SA,

That's a good question. I haven't played enough warriors lists in the last 4 months to speak confidently of a typical list except that they all share a common goal to get me into combat more or less as soon as they can. Now, the lords allowance will likely have changed everything up. Based on the chaos lists I'm used to facing (almost all of which have at least one disc character, a daemonic mount BSB and two chimeras), I imagine I'm going to run into armies which somewhat continue the theme of flying and hard combat power, albeit in lord-heavier form and perhaps with the backing of a heavier magic phase. It strikes me that such armies would be tempted to mine away at their ground-based rare units for new flying character options. In this context, infantry bunkers struck me as an unlikely path to take, but then I always saw them from time to time and I suppose there's no reason that should change now (indeed, as discussed, if fighting lords reduce the commonality and effectiveness of monstrous cavalry, I'd say infantry has more reason to exist).

On the phoenix guard I rarely, if ever, allow them to be taking leadership 9 tests without a re-roll. Quite often that's because they'll be winning combats (now more so than ever since the loremaster stepped in), but if they're looking to lose and hold you have to keep the BSB close. The current BSB therefore mostly belongs with, or close to, the phoenix guard. Only if he's necessary to helm the prince and or helms bust through something, or where moving units is essential for his own survival, do I fancy moving him. As you say, mostly I stick to a paired advance but, if the knights have good reason to charge off, my tendency would be to leave the BSB behind. Against elves I've often deployed him in the archers just to make sure that my whole army has a minimum leadership of 9 and all the infantry, at least, benefits from the re-roll.

Sutilar,

Sounds good - I'll check it out. You're not the only one who needs to get some more games in!

Thanks all,

S

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 28, 2015 3:48 pm 
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Hi Seredain.

In a few days I will attend a fairly big ETC tournament and after a lot of thinking, I'm started to look more and more at your list. As I said earlier I find it very interesting. The thing I actually love the most about it is you get the feeling that you have the tools to take care of anything your opponent can field. The archmage + loremaster really covers oh so much. Of course lot's of things can still go wrong. We are after all only fragile toughness 3 elves :wink: .

I have now played some games with the list and variations of it, and thought I would share some observations and concerns with you.

The loremaster kit
Do we give him the book or not :?: . That's the question.
Being able to one dice miasma is fantastic since it is just an amazing spell. Shems and fireball is not bad either, but not the reason for giving him the book. The archmage can reliably 2 dice all the "small" spells in high magic, which is not bad too.
But after some games where I've tried both things (loremaster with book or with the ogre blade), you can count me in as a supporter of the loremaster with the ogre blade. He is my reasons in a nutshell:
1. The book does not change his casting habits that much. If you want to cast anything on a 10+ (wyssans, fireball, searing doom etc.) you can do it with 2 dice with the book with 68% chance. That is not good enough for me. Therefor I have to spend 3 dice even with the book. Casting these spells without the book with 3 dice gives you a 84% chance which I find to be okay.

2. After some games, I realize that fighting with 3++ phoenix guards is no blood bath on both sides. Very few kills are made. So if the loremaster can put 1-2 extra kills into the equation it actually has a huge impact on who wins combat. I had a game recently where I faced a block of nurgle warriors. The loremaster took out 2 each turn, which was quite amazing and helped me a lot.

3. Finally it also feels like a waste to not take advantage of his 3 attacks and WS 7. People keep saying that you should not see this guy as a combat character, but with 3 s6 armour piercing attacks and a 4+3++ I happen to disagree.

As you also mention yourself the combination of a loremaster and a high magic really gives you all the tools you need in the magic phase. Having always liked high magic, I found that it can be too situational, which makes dispelling way to easy for your opponent. Further, the loremaster have so many buffs for close combat, which is an area high magic lacks too.

So I ended up with this. 2400 points:

Prince on barded steed
Giant blade, Dawnstone, HA, shield, Dragonhelm

Archmage high magic
Talisman of endurance, Book of hoeth

Loremaster
Shield of Merwyrm, Ogre blade, dispel scroll, Gem of sunfire

Noble on barded steed BSB
Banner of the world dragon

21 archers
full command

5 reavers with spears and bows

12 silver helms with shields
Full command

19 Phoenix guards
standard and keeper

4 bolt throwers
eagle


Overall I like the list, and so far it has been quite successful. However, I have some problems with having the BSB in the silver helms. That leaves my phoenix guards with a leadership 9 test, which I'm not in any way happy with. Almost any army need to approach this list, because my shooting and magic is so good so I can keep my units within 12 inches in the beginning of the game at least.

Finally I'm very eager to hear what you think about the loremaster in your list. I like him a lot, but he is sooo expensive with his +300 points. That's more than a frostheart.. And those things are evil.
I realize it turns the list into a very points denial type of list with the loremaster, but ahh I'm not sure if he is too expensive. Time will tell :) .


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 28, 2015 7:05 pm 
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Loremaster is WS6.

8)

It's a good point about adding a kill or two to the PG. This has always been what made the Helm bus tick because the kills put on are backed up by R&F that are hard to kill. With Wood Elves, Sisters of the Thorn can do this.

That World Dragon BSB looks safer in PG than Helms here, on the whole.

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PostPosted: Thu Jan 29, 2015 10:00 am 
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Quote:
Loremaster is WS6.


Guess I got a bit too enthusiastic there :wink: .

Quote:
That World Dragon BSB looks safer in PG than Helms here, on the whole.

He will also go with the PG from time to time. However, the point of the list is to be able to draw any army close and then countercharge them. All my points are in 2 blocks. A 3++ phoenix guard block and a 2+,2++ (against magic) in the silver helms. With my 4 bolt throwers, archers and magic is should be able to make most armies come to me.
So if the BSB is in with the phoenix guards, he does not give the helm bus the protection it needs in the beginning.


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 01, 2015 12:15 pm 
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Andros,

Thanks for the comments. I agree with you about the Book and find it interesting to see your look at the percentages has backed it up. I too find that the Book has minimal impact on the numcer of dice I use for each spell or dispel. Even 1-dicing spells is not something I'll try with the Book unless it's a bound spell or the last cast/dispel of the phase.

Also completely agree that the kills brought by the ogre blade loremaster make a big difference to the guard. You may find there's less of a difference, though, if you take the Razor Standard. Str 4 armour piercing is much, much better than base Str 4 (1+ troops fail twice as many saves), and it makes the ogre blade better too. You've gotta take this flag!

Yes, you're going to have to watch how you play the BSB. His chief weakness is that, against lots of armies, he'll have to stay with the knights. Now there are times the phoenix guard won't need that leadership - they're immune to Fear, don't have to take terror tests and don't typically suffer enough wounds from ranged attacks to take panic tests either. That mostly just leaves break tests to worry about and these, likewise, you can often predict (you know which combats you'll be winning as opposed to those where you'll need to hold on steadfast). If there's a realistic chance you'll be taking break tests with the guard, it's always best to keep them close to the knights. They're good in combat (better than the helms), so getting aggressive with them to keep their leadership solid is usually a good move. Of course, if you want to guarentee yourself the option to keep the BSB close, putting cannonball protection on him really opens up your options. If you want to keep the Banner, though, at least you still have the options to run him with the guard unit where your opponent isn't running template war machines.

For me the chief difference between the loremaster and the frostheart is the matchups issue. Frosthearts are great units with some bad matchups (cannons etc). The loremaster is so flexible that, outside of challenges (which anyway are largely voluntary) he almost has no bad matchups (except maybe death snipes - consider the obsidian trinket if you're worried about these). He also acts as a hard counter to things which are bad matchups for the rest of your army. For me that's traditionally steam tanks - I could hardly ever kill them - but now you could also add regenerators (previously I had no flaming), war machine spam (more long range missiles), cowboy heroes (the prince can't be everywhere at once) and, not least, armour spam in combat (ogre blade + AP banner). The combination of excellent spell flexibility (including combat buffs in a list that had very few outside of the Shield), and serious combat ability (in a list with few natural high strength attacks), very much makes him worth the points. Just watch those unit-melting spells. If you're facing Dwellers and you park the loremaster in the phoenix guard alongside an archmage and even BSB, you're asking to get burned.

Good luck with the tournament. It's Sunday already so I assume I'm too late... In which case I hope it's going/went well!

Oh, and whack Hand of Glory on the loremaster to make him WS7. 8)

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 01, 2015 12:44 pm 
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The Loremaster brings an awful lot. WS7 would be the cherry on top.

Would casting Hand to get there be worth it though? It's not like the list is lacking in casting options.

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 01, 2015 4:08 pm 
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Not for WS7 per se, but for a 3+ combat ward save and -1 to be hit when fighting against ironguts, it's great. Hand of Glory is the quintessential +1 ward spell.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 04, 2015 10:54 am 
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Hi Seredain.

Quote:
You may find there's less of a difference, though, if you take the Razor Standard. Str 4 armour piercing is much, much better than base Str 4 (1+ troops fail twice as many saves), and it makes the ogre blade better too. You've gotta take this flag!

Yes, my mistake. I simply just forgot to write it on the list, however it was with the guard in the tournament :).


Anyway, after having played 7 ETC games with the list, I still really like it. The phoenix guard bunker is amazing. It just can't be touched with it's 3++. I won against a wood elf player 17-3 only because he elected to charge everything into the phoenix guards turn 5. They just took the hits and completely slaughtered them in return.

I found the list to be way more defensive, than I actually thought. With all that shooting and a very very good magic phase, I more often that not, had no reason to advance. In hindsight I might also have been playing too defensive.. Usually my opponent would kill the 5 reavers, the eagle and the archers, which doesn't give up many points.
However, I must say that I feel the silver helm bus with the prince and BSB is a bit awkward in this list. There were so many people who brought mounted flying characters, which really dictated a very defensive play style from my part. Further, the bus with it's huge footprint just didn't feel right. Again this maybe due to me playing too defensively.

Have you found your prince bus to perform well for you? And do you have the phoenix guards close to silver helms all the time, or do you allow them to operate separately?

On a side note: having the gem of sunfire on the loremaster is just amazing. As it stands now, he has melted 2 star dragons away with searing doom :).


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PostPosted: Wed Feb 04, 2015 11:20 am 
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Andros123 wrote:
Have you found your prince bus to perform well for you?

:)

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 04, 2015 11:32 am 
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Joined: Wed Jan 29, 2014 7:30 am
Posts: 263
Haha, okay okay I get that one :).

Let me try again then:
Are you still finding your bus to perform the way it is intended with the shift in the overall Meta to more single mobile troops (time of the big blocks seem to be gone)?
Also with all that nasty stuff out there, I just don't find the prince to be that good. Waystakers are just one of his nightmares as an example.


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