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 Post subject: Eagles v Reavers
PostPosted: Fri Nov 04, 2016 10:38 am 
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viewtopic.php?f=5&t=69961

Prince of Spires wrote:
Eagles are still an ace unit. They didn't really change between 7th and 8th. They're still the cheapest redirector (or even unit in general) we have. So you can't go very wrong with bringing them. It's more that, in my experience, once you hit a certain points level, you pretty much have what you want in core. And then spending 80 core points on a reaver unit can be a better deal then 50 rare points. A bit to do with diminishing returns. At 1500 pts (or even 2000) getting that SH bus, big archer or spear unit is a tight fit. At 2400 or 2500 it's a lot easier and leaves you room for one or two reaver units.

I think there are three issues here:

1) Are Reavers a better pick than Eagles because there is slack in Core?
2) How equivalent are the two choices?
3) Do things differ between a 25% Lords and Heroes environment and a 50%?

I'll kick off with the first point. Rod is basically saying that at 2400/2500 a list usually has the leeway to fit in a unit or two of Reavers in preference to spending Rare points on Eagles. I've a quote that supports the opposed view:

viewtopic.php?f=76&t=33584&start=1260

Seredain wrote:
”Doesn’t matter - It’s a core choice! but I’m starting to think it does matter."

In his early games with the 8th edition HE book, Seredain had fielded a lot of Silver Helms and a modest number of Core infantry, in the belief that the latter wouldn't hurt. But gameplay showed him it did hurt, his Combined Arms list needed more bodies in that infantry block. In short, there wasn't the slack (such as might have accomodated a unit or two of Reavers) available that he'd thought there was. His revised Core at 2500 (he had Eagles in Rare):

24 Archers, Musician, Standard – 260
10 Silver Helms, Musician, Standard – 250
5 Silver Helms - Shields - 115

The point is that all of his Core points were spoken for. He needed a decent number of Archers, to give him a Core Infantry unit that could stand and fight. He needed the larger unit of Helms for his characters. He needed the smaller unit for chasing down missile troops and being an alternative character bunker. There was no slack. Of course, this is just one example but I think it applies to most honed HE lists.

Thoughts?

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 Post subject: Re: Eagles v Reavers
PostPosted: Sat Nov 05, 2016 7:18 am 
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Ah, one of the big questions of our times! Regarding HE at least ;)

Personally, I'm firmly in the Eagles camp. Its the flying that makes the difference. Somehow, despite their light cav rules, the Reavers are much worse at being at the right place in the right time.

They still have their place and, being core, aren't a bad way to spend points. I just think the eagles are a must have regardless of their presence :wink:

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 Post subject: Re: Eagles v Reavers
PostPosted: Sun Nov 06, 2016 7:28 pm 
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RE.Lee wrote:
Personally, I'm firmly in the Eagles camp. Its the flying that makes the difference. Somehow, despite their light cav rules, the Reavers are much worse at being at the right place in the right time.

We're on to point 2) I suggest. There is certainly overlap. Both can be used to redirect and unlimited Free Reforms help Reavers a lot but flight is an advantage. Both can fight, at a pinch, though again they fight differently. Both can hunt War Machines under some circumstances. Here Reavers have Vanguard to make up for the lack of flight.

There are differences too though. Eagles don't take Panic tests from shooting damage. Reavers are very difficult to one-shot with cannon. Reavers can flee charges and still function. Eagles can cannon-screen. Then again, we can ask how much overlap there is between Reavers and a small unit of Silver Helms for example?

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 Post subject: Re: Eagles v Reavers
PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2016 9:13 am 
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I'm, unsurprisingly..., in the reaver camp. Though as always, it depends on what list you have.

For me the main role of both is to get in the way of stuff and allow me to control the movement of my opponent. Either to let me avoid a deathstar type unit or to stall parts of an army so I can first deal with the other parts. Any thing extra they do is a bonus to me, whether it's getting shot, charging into combat and so on.

Some thoughts on reavers.
They're actually faster in the first two turns then eagles are. With vanguard and M9 they effectively get a 30'' move T1 compared to a 20'' one of eagles. You can put them on an extreme flank and have them be pretty much anywhere on the board T2 (same goes for eagles, I know, but still worth mentioning). There are also fewer ways to hamper reavers. When running into a storm banner skaven list for instance, the eagles are reduced to a measly M2. The reavers have no trouble at all and can just keep moving. Feigned flight is a nice bonus early turns, though for me it only occasionally plays a role. More often then not I want to keep whatever is being blocked in place.

Reavers have more wounds then an eagle. 5 vs 3. The T4 compensates a bit, but the reavers have a 5+ armour save which helps in some cases. They're less likely to die to shooting, though if either they or an eagle gets shot it's already a win in my book.

The combat potential of the reavers is a lot higher then the eagle. 2 attacks is just not reliable enough for any kind of serious combat support. The reavers have the same S on the charge, more attacks and they get a reroll in many cases (reavers have no reason to fight I6 or higher units). The 5 horse attacks are a nice bonus. Having 10 attacks also means they're a much better target for a magical boost. Extreme case, mind razor on them. I would let mind razor on an eagle pass. S8 is impressive, but with only 2 attacks I'll live in most cases. 10 S8 attacks on the other hand, 5 of which also reroll misses will hurt. A lot. Same goes for most other spells you can think of.

But, in the end the main reason for me to pick reavers is that they are core. HE core got better in 8th ed compared to 7th. But it's still not something to brag about. Of course, this doesn't mean that there are no configurations where core is so packed with other stuff that there is still room for reavers. And once you go over min core eagles are a better choice (since they're cheaper). But until you do, go with reavers. It probably helps that I have no SH models. Which means that I don't run a SH bus. And a SH bus fills up core fast. I can see the sense in Seredains core configuration. His SH bus was a core part of his list and army style. You want some shooting to take out the pesky eagles of your opponent and so on.

Still, the 5 SH could have been replaced by a reaver unit. Yes, 5 SH are a handy unit to have. But at the same time, so is 7 or 8 extra SM or WL (which is what you could get for the points if they were special). And if you're not running a cavalry prince / SH bus there is a smaller need for a backup SH unit. Or perhaps you could jiggle stuff around and find the 145 points needed for a 5 strong DP unit, which is more expensive by 30 points, but also has double the hitting power and higher WS (and a 6+ ward save as a bonus).

A side point, it also depends on the points total you're playing. The lower you go in points, the faster core fills up. You'll always want some shooting somewhere. And the unit should be a decent size. So 10 archers don't cut it. Same if you decide to bring spearmen, they need to be a minimum size before they start being useful. And then saving points by going for eagles instead of reavers is worth it. Same goes the other way round of course. If you're loading up on the other goodies in rare then you may very well end up with no space for eagles.

Rod

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 Post subject: Re: Eagles v Reavers
PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2016 1:06 pm 
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Some really good points there!

I think it largely boils down to personal experience with the units themselves and against most common opposition. Reavers are a bit more complicated to use I think (as is all fast cavalry with its vaguards and feigned flights that I notoriously forget about) and are better when the enemy is coming your way or at least opens up a little bit, so that you can exploit those holes in his lines. Against the Dwarfs, my regular opponents, many of those advantages are lost. The eagles' ability to jump over the enemy infantry and threaten their warmachines is more valuable then.

Right now I'm having the same problem with Chaos - the marauder horsemen just suck at infiltrating the Dwarf line and if they manage to sneak through they get a salvo to the face and die. Not exactly a fair comparison, but the Daemon Prince has much more mobility :)

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 Post subject: Re: Eagles v Reavers
PostPosted: Mon Nov 07, 2016 9:23 pm 
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Prince of Spires wrote:
When running into a storm banner skaven list for instance, the eagles are reduced to a measly M2.

Good point. Obviously this is likely only for a turn and only against Skaven (or Bretonnians). It cost me a unit of Treekin once though.

Prince of Spires wrote:
The combat potential of the reavers is a lot higher then the eagle

Charging with Spears I'd have to agree. Where Eagles shine is surprise flank or rear charges which Reavers can struggle to pull off because they can't fly over things. In those cases it's often the static CR that matters.

Prince of Spires wrote:
It probably helps that I have no SH models. Which means that I don't run a SH bus. And a SH bus fills up core fast. I can see the sense in Seredains core configuration. His SH bus was a core part of his list and army style.

Exactly Rod, Helm Bus makes a big difference here. The other main Core set-up is to take a lot of Archers, especially if running a defensive list. But there you might often want a couple of small cav units anyway.

Prince of Spires wrote:
Still, the 5 SH could have been replaced by a reaver unit.

The last ETC under 8th saw a lot of HE players running Helms instead of Reavers. Mainly I think because they take fire better and elves were everywhere by that stage. Ironically, Seredain was fielding a single unit of Reavers! In his case I believe because the 50% Lords and Heroes meta saw him use those non-Core points and so his beloved Eagles had to go. Though of course by that stage, redirectors had become generally less important.

RE.Lee wrote:
Right now I'm having the same problem with Chaos - the marauder horsemen just suck at infiltrating the Dwarf line and if they manage to sneak through they get a salvo to the face and die. Not exactly a fair comparison, but the Daemon Prince has much more mobility

Against any opponent with BS shooting, WoC light troops go down very, very quickly. There might be some point to hiding them early game so they can try to pop out and redirect later. As you say RE this can be counterbalanced by access to (multiple) flyers, which are themselves very hard to redirect, especially under 50% Lords and Heroes.

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 Post subject: Re: Eagles v Reavers
PostPosted: Fri Nov 11, 2016 8:11 am 
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shuffling forums around I came across this little gem: Great Eagle Tips and Tricks (actually, it's a rather big gem, but well worth the read). Everything you ever wanted to know about eagles and how to use them to make your opponent hate them ;)

11 reasons why eagles rock!

Rod

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 Post subject: Re: Eagles v Reavers
PostPosted: Sat Nov 26, 2016 3:35 am 
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I still mostly (95% of the time) use eagles. But before the current book I ALWAYS used eagles. And I firmly believe that anyone who didn't wasn't doing it right. And I know people who play somewhat seriously (like I did in 6th and early 7th) felt the same way.

Now there are some situations where they just don't fit into your rare points, and the fact that you can use reavers for core combined with the vanguard rule means that you can cover a lot of the roles that eagles filled without too much loss in other areas for some lists.

But most of the time it's really of question of should I take Eagles AND Reavers, or just eagles. For the cost, and how well they function in support of rest of the high elf list it's just hard to justify not having a couple.


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 Post subject: Re: Eagles v Reavers
PostPosted: Sat Nov 26, 2016 12:09 pm 
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Shannar, Sealord wrote:
I still mostly (95% of the time) use eagles. But before the current book I ALWAYS used eagles. And I firmly believe that anyone who didn't wasn't doing it right. And I know people who play somewhat seriously (like I did in 6th and early 7th) felt the same way.

I agree, with one exception. Every time I played someone who wasn't using Eagles, they weren't familiar with redirection and hence weren't that good. Ant Spiers though didn't use them and he was a stellar player.

As mentioned earlier, the big difference I noticed was if playing under 50% Lords and Heroes. If your opponent's rocking four or five heavy flyers, redirectors become less vital.

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 Post subject: Re: Eagles v Reavers
PostPosted: Sat Nov 26, 2016 10:27 pm 
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This might be a bit old school, but just deploying an eagle if you go first is a great distraction. Followed by another eagle, and then a unit of reavers before deploy the main front line troops. I'd take two eagles for rare and a unit of reavers at least.

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 Post subject: Re: Eagles v Reavers
PostPosted: Sun Nov 27, 2016 2:23 am 
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Chracian wrote:
This might be a bit old school, but just deploying an eagle if you go first is a great distraction. Followed by another eagle, and then a unit of reavers before deploy the main front line troops.

Does make life easier. Now and then it might pay to hold an eagle deployment back, say against a really fast enemy.

Chracian wrote:
I'd take two eagles for rare and a unit of reavers at least.

I used that combo for a long time. Not essential but nice to have.

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