Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Eldar Tactica! Avatar

Rework in the makings for the Autarch. Avatar is sufficient for now but will most likely also be re-done.

All that is Beast! Rawr! For his points the Avatar is one of the Cheapest yet most effective CC monsters there is. He's T6 which means basic weaponry will need atleast a 5 or 6 to wound him and he's got a 3/4+ save which means he has a decent chance of stopping whatever does try and harm him. At 4 wounds he can even afford to take 1 or 2 ouchies before making it to combat and still tear shit up! He's S6 and MC and he even has a built in meltagun which means vehicles and Walkers are less of a problem than other things that are just as tough if not tougher than the Avatar. Did I mention he's WS10 and I6? I6!!! He can outswing and outhit even the fiercest opponents. He's a Daemon too! Daemons are all Eternal Warriors so no blowing his mind apart with Force weapons or having to worry about the Khan lopping his head off with a single stroke. He even makes other Eldar within 12" fearless. IMMUNE TO FLAME AND MELTA BASED WEAPONRY! Get some.

Even the beast must be wary though. T6 isn't by any means unstoppable. Though he can take his fair share of lasgun and bolter volleys doesn't mean you should let him and that's the lightest weaponry someone will carry, don't forget about heavier weapons that wound even T6 on a 2 or 3 and than you only have a 4+ invul to fall back on. Something that makes you take a save makes you take the risk of failing that save. For proper support you should have your own warriors giving heavy cover fire and/or presenting a multitude of threats that leaves the enemy unable to deal with all of them.

Distraction or Hammer? A Favorite tactic while running an Avatar is to split your force into roughly equal halves. Equal being based on either High Toughness or lots of models. The first half consists of the Avatar and the toughest BAMFs that you want to march alongside him, usually Wraithlords. These guys like to wade up the middle soaking up huge ammounts of the enemy fire power before charging in and crushing whatever was shooting at em. A potent fire magnet in their own right, the most frustrating thing is that some of them usually live to make it to the enemy line and this actually represents very little of your army. The Rest of your force is laying down cover fire or soaring to the flanks in tranports ready to butcher the enemy in close quarters. With the Avatar and a couple buddies providing such valuable not to mention potent double duty on the battlefield it's easy to see why these guys enjoy such popularity.

The Anchor The other way of running the Avatar without actually fussing over the little details is to use him to bolster a huge Eldar Firing Line or Horde of CC guys. Both ways are run pretty much the same way just one moves and the other does not. By using him to provide fearless you ensure your ability to return fire with every unit that has atleast one model within 12" of the Avatar no matter how many casualties are inflicted on them short of total wipeout or how many enemy snipers are trying to pin you. The other Way is to field bunches and bunches of Storm Guardians supported by a couple heavies and run them screaming at the enemy. I dunno how effective it is but it sounds like fun.

Comments and criticism are always appreciated guys. I'll be going over Rangers and Pathfinders in my next thrilling installment. Till next time!


  1. I completely disagree with your opinion of the Autarch. Although he is not an uber-death-machine, he is both a tactical asset and a good boost to an aspect squad. The +1 to reserve rolls has been invaluable many times, and he has quite a few kills under his belt.

    I have yet to finish my avatar...but you has given me some food for thought ;)

  2. The Autarch's main role is to give you +1 to reserves. No more, no less. It's an advantage for dealing with a shooty enemy going first. Reserve everything, get it quickly anyway.

    Past that, put him where you can. Usually mine gets a Fusion Gun and Power weapon and plays with the Fire Dragons, or goes off to try to assassinate something.

    Regarding the Avatar:
    He is a Daemon, but is NOT an eternal warrior. His entry specifies 'daemon', but you're stretching things to say that the Chaos Daemons codex 'daemon' rules grant him eternal warrior.

    I'm not so sold on the Avatar, truth be told. I think Avatar + 3 Wraithlords can be fun, but I don't know about effective. Take a sword and two flamers, and maybe a scatter laser, and run at the enemy. Hope the enemy isn't fast, or capable of moving vehicles 12" and annoying you. Bright side? It's like 400-500 points of the army.

    The Anchor?
    What are you anchoring?
    The Eldar just don't have solid shooty infantry. Guardian Defenders have low BS, and all their high-strength weapons are single-shot. for objective-sitting, Rangers are superior, since they can go to ground for a 2+ save.

    I'm not worried about Fearless, since I'm not going to shoot the Avatar. Truthfully, about the only army you can kind of count on running off with shooting is Tau, since thye have no morale support. Most folks will shoot 'til dead anyway.

    For melee support:
    Throwing an Avatar into assault to back up weak infantry like Guardians, or even flimsy infantry like Banshees or Harlies (they ARE flimsy, even if deadly) is going to be a lesson in No Retreat! wounds. The enemy will NOT attack the Avatar if they can help it. The Avatar kills a couple, and then guardians get torn up. Fearless wounds are handed out. Same thing goes for Wraithlords and backing up piddly infantry.

    I think if you want melee support on foot, you're better off with Harlies. A squad of 7-8 with Kisses, a Power Weapon Troupe Leader, and Shadowseer will run around 200, but simply cannot be shot outside of 4d6 inches.

    I'm not saying that the Avatar is worthless, but I'm saying that the Fearless aura isn't that huge a bonus.

  3. Could always be wrong on the Daemon thing. Happened before, gonna happen a lot more. Would be cool though!

    On the Autarch I just don't feel like he's strong enough to take stand alone. Stand alone in as only taking 1 HQ. I don't feel the slot and/or the points are worth spending just so you can try and reserve faster. I dislike reserves, the less targets you present to someone the easier it is for them to totally nuke what you have put on the board. Not to mention it's still possible to fail reserve rolls and there's nothing like having to fight an uphill battle because a couple units rolled less than what you needed to come on board. I still take my Autarch, he still has a place in my heart and his kill list is huge! but it's always because he has a good squad rolling around with him with other things to draw fire. I like being able to hit and run with the Shining spears or giving some extra Power to my Seer Council on bikes. I just don't like that he usually under performs when I change his kit or when I have No Psychic support to take pressure off his S3. Yes you have a chance of pimping other Peoples HQs with a melta shot but when you take into account cover/invul saving and getting locked in hand to hand S3/T3 puts you against the odds.

    The Avatar can Anchor whatever you want him to. Since our shooting units are ld8/9 and it's easy to start inflicting 25% casualties I like the insurance that I won't run off the board or break with no chance to regroup. Dire Avengers, Rangers/Pathfinders, Dark Reapers and Guardians squads are great shooting units. Some of the best for their points cost. And they become better when you have to kill every single model.
    Guardians are atleast BS3 and that's the normal for non MEQ armies, Guard still get along fine with in. A full Guardian squad still gets around 40 shots and they'll smash into things with Farseer support. One can even take a Shuri-Cannon or Scatter Laser and that's a nice chunk of S6 shots.

    You can also Anchor the CC mob. Storm Guardians can get a lot of attacks and with a Warlock Leader with Enhance making them I5 you'll get your batch of dice before the other guy and with doom you'll actually make good use of the swings you do hit on. The Avatar at this point just swings the combat more in your favor. If you actually have Harlies or Banshees you'll really tear shit up inflicting more rending wounds or power weapon wounds or whatever CC unit you have a preference for.

    Fearless is what you make of it. As with anything with probability if you make something take enough tests it'll fail one. Even LD9/10 units if you force em to make enough tests start running out of position or start becoming pinned or falling off the board. And there's nothing better when one of your units does start falling back and it regroups when it becomes fearless if it normally couldn't because it was under half strength or whatever other reasons.

    Harles are only mediocre. This is of course my opinion but I feel that being T3 and a 5+ invul only gets you so far. Even the Veil power only works for so long with all the mechanized armies running around, dumping guys after moving and hosing you down. And they will hose you down. Even if you were to just Mathhammer(I hate mathhammer)a Rapid firing, bs4 squad you hit what 14/15 times? wound 7/8 and Make 1 or 2 saves. That still kills half or little more than half a squad and now the shooters can probably survive an assault from the remaining clowns. Survivability is better because they can occupy a Falcon or someone Wave Serpent turn 1 but now they run the risk of taking more woudns if the transport explodes. With the prevalence of Drop Pods unless you hem your guys in with a shield of other units and vehicles it can be dangerous just sticking them somewhere with the threat of Sternguard/Dreadnaughts with flamers looming. Isn't the Veil of Tears 2d6 x 2?

    Good points guys and there's my take on em. Other things I should consider or take into account?