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Author Topic: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.  (Read 21038 times)

Offline Warlord

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What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« on: April 24, 2012, 02:45:56 AM »
So what does the new, classic 8th edition Empire army look like?

We have been discussing effectiveness of unit x, overcosting of unit y, but people are still grappling at how to put it all together to make an army. Keep in mind, this is intended to be a discussion on what units could come together to form a cohesive army, and not so much about which unit is most effective - we have plenty of threads already running about that.

So lets have a quick list of unit choices and their effectiveness (ignoring Special Characters):

LORDS
General - cheap L9 in units, or great on a Griffon
Arch Lector - with CoC can double as both General & WP in a unit, WA gives good AOE buffs (however many WPs may be cheaper)
Grand Master - only really any good with Runefang & OTS
Wizard Lord - cheap, must take even just as magic defense

HEROS
Captain - always take one as BSB, useful in units, useful on pegasus
Warrior Priest - cheap buff character, useful in all types of units, spam has potential
Wizard - cheap, must take, good offense / defense
Engineer - only useful on a helblaster, arguably an expensive combo
Witch Hunter - not very useful, perhaps useful in a second rank with MoH

CORE
Halberdiers - Still great as a Horde and detachment
Swordsmen - expensive, WS4 is only benefit, halberds are probably more useful
Spearmen - cheap bus unit
Free Company - overpriced, anything they can do, halberds do better

Crossbowmen - too expensive, outriders are a better choice for the points
Handgunners - too expensive, outriders are a better choice for the points
Archers - cheap screening unit, good redirectors,

Knights - cheap flanker
IC Knights - cheap strong flanker, consider with GW

SPECIAL
Greatswords - bunker unit for characters, bestows stubborn on detachments, expensive but useful as a horde, small autonomous flank unit
Flagellants - benefits most from war altar buffs, people liked a horde of them before will still like them

Reiksguard - useful flanker / tarpit
Demigryph Knights - strongest unit for cost, should see at least 1 unit of these in any competitive list

Pistoliers - expensive and situational
Outriders - besides from archers, only viable small arms fire, decent on a flank or behind lines
Huntsmen - cheap, good disrupters

Cannon - despite point increase, still must take
Mortar - too expensive, not strong enough, situation - must take against skaven or elves only.

RARE
Helblaster - reliable, good for killing knights and monster units
Helstorm - not very reliable, situational, decent against skaven

Luminark - useful for a defensive army
Hurricanum - useful for an offensive army

Steam Tank - reliable, all rounder - can shoot, charge and tarpit.


Now lets consider how they all fit together.

THE 8TH EDITION RECIPE
  • I see most people still taking the horde of halberds (with a general or AL with CoC), together with a bus of spearmen.
  • I expect people will take the demigryph knights as their strong flank support, perhaps backed up by a steam tank.
  • A War Altar, Luminark or Hurricanum (or 2 of the 3) will make an appearance in the middle / behind the line of halberds and spears.
  • A cannon and a helblaster will form our artillery support.
  • BSB will be with the infantry, either the spearmen or a bunker unit of greatswords.
  • Sprinkle with wizards and warrior priests, and whatever other units you want to flavour, and voila, the mainstay Empire army of 8th edition.

Here is my interpretation:
http://warhammer-empire.com/theforum/index.php?topic=42145.0

Obviously people will make adjustments to their own preference, but surely this is pretty much what an optomised 8th edition Empire army would roughly look like.
« Last Edit: April 24, 2012, 02:54:27 AM by Warlord »
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Offline Clymer

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #1 on: April 24, 2012, 04:23:05 AM »
I think that's a really reliable build and going to be very common for sure. I think the gypsy caravans may be touch and go... I'm still very skeptical of them and am holding a spot on my shelf for them next to my Thundertusk just in case. But I'll be the first to be happily surprised if I'm wrong. In any case, I think you'll see players juggling between them and other support choices.

I do think that you will also see some viable cav based lists too. Either a medium unit and some core infantry, or a large unit plus demigryphs and elite infantry.

So far the only absolute must haves that I see in our book are Warrior Priests, Cannons, perhaps the steam tank, and the perennial level 4 and BSB. Otherwise I think it's mostly up for grabs and I expect to see a lot of diversity, although I agree that what you listed above will be among the most common builds.

I think a lot of people will take spearmen, the same way that most people take goblins. They'll do almost nothing in most games, get completely hosed in some, but just often enough they will do something amazing enough that they confirm the owning players bias that spearmen are actually any good. Said player, if he works very hard, will find himself in the bottom of the top third at tournaments, always wondering why they never place any higher.  :icon_mrgreen:
Note: The above post was intended for entertainment purposes only and may contain views not necessarily held by its author. Any similarity to actual facts is purely coincidental.

Offline pippin_nl

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2012, 05:03:52 AM »
Many players wish to spam pidgeoneers and do not agre with:

Engineer - only useful on a helblaster, arguably an expensive combo

I am not convinced either way. Also I am not convinced about the blastineer, 6-12 S5 hits is not very strong versus hordes, you might kill about 5 bloodletters for instance

Offline StealthKnightSteg

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2012, 10:22:29 AM »
I take Swordsmen and Free Company Militia both as detachments. Swordsmen at 10 or 15 to hold their own in a first round of combat to allow flanking to take place next turn. And FCM of 10 as chaff, speed bump and an extra target to screen my regimental unit.. let them take the pain nstead of the halberdiers that I want to survive a round or 2 longer.
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Offline Uryens de Crux

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2012, 10:27:05 AM »
My army will look almost exactly the same as it did in 6th ed, and 7th ed and now 8th ed, barring a couple of tweaks for points and missing magic item (I am still mourning the loss of the Sword of Sigismund)
We go to gain a little patch of ground that hath in it no profit but the name.
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Offline Fandir Nightshade

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2012, 10:28:07 AM »
Take the sword of ASF and a potion of strength you seldon need that one round of I kick ass this turn and re rolls to hit is a nice addition for 45 points.

Offline Uryens de Crux

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2012, 11:13:55 AM »
Its not the same  :icon_cry:
We go to gain a little patch of ground that hath in it no profit but the name.
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The Barony of Wusterburg

Offline The Ol Perfesser

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2012, 11:17:53 AM »
Thanks Warlord for this nice synopsis.   :::cheers:::

I have not yet played a game using the new 8ed army book rules, but I hope to very soon.  I really hope that the Steam Tank/Demigryph Knight combo turns out to be as effective as I think it can be.

The HBVG + Engineer combo seems like a natural to me...but perhaps two HBVGs without an engineer would be better and more cost effective?

Normally I would always take 2 cannons, but with the increased reliability of the STANK, I am now tempted to just take one.

 
Never make predictions, especially about the future.

Offline Fandir Nightshade

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #8 on: April 24, 2012, 11:18:42 AM »
@ Uryens
Yes...it is better.

@ Olperfesser

2 HBVG > 1 HBVG+ Engineer and only slightly higher in costs.


Offline Finlay

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #9 on: April 24, 2012, 11:22:25 AM »
I think a lot of people will switch to one cannon, and use the stanks cannon as a fall back.

I'm not sure that a lord character other than a wizard is vital. Perhaps a Lector with the CoC so you need one less WP.

level 4 wizard
BSB
some warrior priests

Halberdier horde

Cannon
Demigryph knights

Stank.


I think that is the "basic" template I would build around (unless I was doing all mounted)
I wonder if a unit of 10 Ic knights will become standard now too.
I don't care about the rules.

Pass the machete.

Offline Fandir Nightshade

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #10 on: April 24, 2012, 11:23:39 AM »
If not 10 than 6 IC knights are very good and most important they fill core slots.


Nice bodyguard for whatever lord choice carrying the crown of command and maybe them the banner of discipline.

Offline Joey_Boy

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #11 on: April 24, 2012, 11:30:14 AM »
Not sure if I agree with the competative EMpire armys using and infantry what so ever. Maybe one unit of swordsmen to help break steadfast. I know Halberds are better at killing stuff, but Swordsmen are better at retaining ranks without character or buff support. And in all cav lists that is what you want as the DGK and IC knights will be doing the damage.

I think we will be seeing something like this:

lvl4, Life.
BSB on pony.
WP on pony.
2 Pegasii capt. (or another unit of 4 DKG, or more cannons/a Helblaster)
12 IC Knights /w GW
10+5+5 Archers
5 knights /lances (or Swordsmen for rank breaking)
4 DGK
4 DGK
STank
STank


The mobility and durability of the Cav lists are superior to any infantry build we can make right now. And with 5 solid combat elements and Life magic in support the army style can take a beating and still keep on trucking.

That's my predictions for the future, some form of the above list. The only reason for taking infantry(other then a GS horde) is for fluff, comp or nostalgia. This is based on competitive tournament play. There is other builds with some infantry and buffage all over, they will however not be as good. 

Offline Calisson

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #12 on: April 24, 2012, 12:00:56 PM »
Engineer - only useful on a helblaster, arguably an expensive combo
Cannon - despite point increase, still must take
Helblaster - reliable, good for killing knights and monster units
I'd recommand a battery of Cannon + Hellblaster with 1 Engineer. 305pts overall.
Align HB forwards, engie at 3" behind, cannon 3" behind engie.
When you start the game and as long as the HB's 24" bubble is free of enemies, the engie helps the cannon.
When the HB has a target, the engie helps the HB and let the cannon aim by itself.
When the HB is about to be charged, the engie remains in between, at the appropriate angle so the pursuit leaves the cannon out of threat. So much for 2 warmachines disabled in 1 turn.
When the engie has been killed in melee, the enemy can't overrun a second time, and stays there => grapeshoot them.


Crossbowmen - too expensive, outriders are a better choice for the points
Handgunners - too expensive, outriders are a better choice for the points
Agree, however they are both core, contrary to outrider.
A small unit of 10 plus 2 detachments of 5 are still useful to babysit a sorcerer.
Such a detachment won't do anything good anyway, so  at least it can shoot.
Xbows have an interesting range for that purpose.



Back to the original question, now.
how to put it all together to make an army?
what units could come together to form a cohesive army?
People want all the goodies plus their favorite units.
In games <3000pts, you just cannot have it all.

- There is the 25% requirement for core.
With all the goodies available in rare/special/hero/lord slots, I foresee core troops to be kept to minimum 25%.
One bus plus 2 detachments as redirectors seems reasonable. Add 1-2 units of vanilla knights.
Alternative: a large unit of ICK. Add 10 Xbows + 2x5 bows for wiz babysit/redirectors.

I'd recommend to start with the core troop and restrict the other slots to what is essential.
Doing it the other way, you'd risk to leave 0% for core, and be forced to remove some useful stuff and replace it by suboptimal core.

- Note that Rare units are all at the same cost (or double that cost for STank).
1 HB = 1 wizcart = 1/2 STank = full allowance for 500pts.
There is a strong incentive to max the rare slot. Every 500pts, you'd wish to take more.
Before comitting 25% of the army to rare, make sure they all fit with your battle plan. The more you cans spare, the better.

That leaves you with 50% for lords + heroes + special.

- heroes are so good that there will be a wish to take many.
BSB is near mandatory.  1-2 WP are must-take. 1 engineer is great with HB+cannon. Captains are nice for "hold the line". Wizards are useful, especially in light with the importance of buffing troops.
Can't take them all. The witchhunter is out.

I foresee that lvl1-2 will soon be out, due to the competition with WP/wizcarts/popemobile/Lvl3-4. Simply said, there's not enough PD for every caster.
I don't expect many non/BSB captains either.

That leaves BSB + 1-2 WP + 1 engie as a candidate for the optimal list.
Not even sure for the engie. However, his duty cannot be taken by anyone except by more warmachines, and you're short of rare/special pts.

- lords.
I want a Lvl4 for magic defense, and the popemobile for flaming cannons/hatred for everyone.
I'd love the griffon general and the runefang GM. And another lvl4, too.
Can't take them all.
That should be either GOTE or TGM or none.
That should be either 1 Lvl4 or WA, possibly none if I get several WP and a wizcart.
I'm convinced that an army could do well with only WA/wizcarts/WP, and not a single sorcerer.
I don't say that it's optimal, you'd have to endure the opponent's magic, but you'd have plenty of use for your meagre PD.
I won't be surprised to see a no-lord competitive army, maxing rare/hero slots.

- Finally, special.
I put them last because I think that they are less mandatory than other choices.
Is there any pts remaining? If not, review your previous choices and remove anything which is not absolutely vital.
Cannons are still near mandatory. 1 or 2 depending on the size of the army.
Greatswords => consider a core bus instead.
Flagellants => the STank can tar pit as well. Either one is great, probably not both.
Reiksguard => consider ICK instead. Either one, not both.
Demigryph Knights => consider STank. Keep them cheap anyway.
Outriders => consider handgunners or RXB instead.
Pistoliers => consider archers instead.
Huntsmen => consider archers instead.
Once you've considered it all, some specials will remain, some will see their role more or less taken by core units or units you already plan to take.



Overall, the good point with Empire is that many units have roles which overlap with many other units.
This means that you could do without pretty much anything, except BSB, 1 WP and cannon.

Offline zifnab0

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #13 on: April 24, 2012, 01:05:43 PM »
I'd recommand a battery of Cannon + Hellblaster with 1 Engineer. 305pts overall.
Totally agree.  This is going to be my preferred setup, although some people might want to take 2 sets, although expensive.

- There is the 25% requirement for core.
With all the goodies available in rare/special/hero/lord slots, I foresee core troops to be kept to minimum 25%.
One bus plus 2 detachments as redirectors seems reasonable. Add 1-2 units of vanilla knights.
Alternative: a large unit of ICK. Add 10 Xbows + 2x5 bows for wiz babysit/redirectors.
I've actually been playing around with the idea of using a block of Greatswords as my central unit and filling up core points with Knights, possibly inner circle.  Expensive, but it's a hard hitting combo.

I foresee that lvl1-2 will soon be out, due to the competition with WP/wizcarts/popemobile/Lvl3-4. Simply said, there's not enough PD for every caster.
I don't expect many non/BSB captains either.
There's also not enough room in the hero slot to take a Level 2 wizard.  A non-BSB captain is great for making a unit virtually fearless.

I want a Lvl4 for magic defense, and the popemobile for flaming cannons/hatred for everyone.
I don't think the popemobile will be as useful as it used to be.  You've already got 2 WP for buffing your Bus/Horde, what else is going to need hatred and be within 6" of the popemobile?  Flaming cannons is pretty much the only reason to take a popemobile and I'm not convinced it's worth it.

I also don't think the wagons are worth mounting a lvl. 4 on them.  They might be good as a rare choice, but they're a liability for a wizard.

Lords I think will be Lvl. 4 maybe a GotE instead of a captain in one of your blocks.  Griffon GotE might also be useful, but you're spending a lot of points on him, and not taking advantage of HtL, which IMO is the real value of our mundane characters.

Greatswords => consider a core bus instead.
Flagellants => the STank can tar pit as well. Either one is great, probably not both.
Demigryph Knights => consider STank. Keep them cheap anyway.
I think Demigryph Knights are going to be a staple.  A 4-wide unit is hard hitting and cheaper than a STank.  And they're one of the few units we can field with multiple attacks.

Greatswords haven't been replaced by anything in the core choices.

Flagellants shouldn't be taken, there are better and cheaper tarpits.

Offline tcklein

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #14 on: April 24, 2012, 01:30:14 PM »
I think a lot of people will switch to one cannon, and use the stanks cannon as a fall back.

I've been doing this and it's working out pretty well.

Offline Talben21

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #15 on: April 24, 2012, 01:36:12 PM »
For any new Empire players; this thread has a lot of great advice in it!

Offline Spiney

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #16 on: April 24, 2012, 02:13:20 PM »
Callison, that's a great assessment of how to build an army, it was really helpful thanks.

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Offline Padre

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #17 on: April 24, 2012, 02:27:11 PM »
Thank you ever so much for this thread. It's made me really look at the rulebook again, which in turn has made a bit miffed.

The points per Handgunner (I have loads of painted handgunners) are ridiculous, especially, as pointed out, cf. the Outriders (of which I have none). One Outrider at loads less than the cost of three Handgunners, shoots the same number of shots at the same effective BS, and on top of that gets the positional benefits of fast cavalry, and has an armour save. Completely and utterly stupid points imbalance. I am almost afraid to start comparing other things. The only thing I can think of which 'balances' this is that when one Outrider dies you lose three shots, but when one Handgunner dies you lose only one. Oh, and Handgunners can have standards (just points for the enemy to take). Meh!
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Offline Sanctus

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #18 on: April 24, 2012, 03:43:17 PM »
I'm still skeptical on the 2 cannons + HBVG battery. I'm not sure he's worth it still, he's still a gamble in of itself in that he has to chose which cannon etc to help out before they are shot. I might have play around with a bit but I'm not sure, he's still a point investment and is worth 10 Halberds or a WP.

Offline Spiney

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #19 on: April 24, 2012, 03:53:14 PM »
I'm still skeptical on the 2 cannons + HBVG battery. I'm not sure he's worth it still, he's still a gamble in of itself in that he has to chose which cannon etc to help out before they are shot. I might have play around with a bit but I'm not sure, he's still a point investment and is worth 10 Halberds or a WP.

Are you talking about an engineer with the HBVG? Sure he is expensive, but looking at what he does to the engine by allowing you to reroll a arty dice AND raising its BS by 1 is a pretty big step up. Basically what it comes down to is does he increase the effectiveness of the machine by 50%, if he does then its worth paying the points.

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Offline malladin_ben

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #20 on: April 24, 2012, 03:58:31 PM »
A note on Handgunners (and I'm not really stating this as a big defence of them as I'be dropped them from my army) but they can be detachments, which means they get to stand and shoot when your main unit is charged. Trouble is when they get charged they die very easily and provides a nice soft target for breaking the detachment trap.

I still wouldn't take them, but it is something they can do that outsiders can't.

Ben

Offline Warlord

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #21 on: April 24, 2012, 04:07:51 PM »
Outriders => consider handgunners or RXB instead.

You mean XB. If we could get RXB, that would be a very different discussion  :-)

I think I do overestimate flagellants, mainly because of all those people who swore by them in 7th and early 8th. Those people will (and should) continue to use them, because in theory they are still our most destructive unit. Especially now that the max 30 unit size is lifted.
Personally though, I think they die too much.

I do disagree about the role of the Demi-gryphs vs the role of the Steam Tank. Yes, on the charge, the steam tank can hurt, however subsequent rounds it will not be able to dish out anywhere near as much damage as the Demi-gryphs. Add to that their ability to take a magic banner (such as flaming) and these guys will kill things and fast. Faster the Steam Tank grinding in subsequent rounds. They cannot tarpit, however, which the Steam Tank does excel at.

Plus, you mentioned it yourself, the Rare points percentage restriction will mean these guys can perform a similar role.
Rare I generally see going to a Steam tank, Helblaster and Magic Wagon. Not enough points in the slot left for another Steam Tank, and thats why the DGK will see a lot of action.

A note on Handgunners (and I'm not really stating this as a big defence of them as I'be dropped them from my army) but they can be detachments, which means they get to stand and shoot when your main unit is charged. Trouble is when they get charged they die very easily and provides a nice soft target for breaking the detachment trap.

I still wouldn't take them, but it is something they can do that outsiders can't.

Outriders can stand and shoot also...
And if they are charged, they can flee, and rally in a really annoying spot for the next turn.

But regardless, Outriders do perform a different role than handgunners / crossbowmen - I just don't believe the handgunner / crossbowmen role is required anymore.
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Offline Calisson

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #22 on: April 24, 2012, 04:26:48 PM »
Outriders => consider handgunners or RXB instead.

You mean XB. If we could get RXB, that would be a very different discussion  :-)
Oops! The dark elf spy has been spotted.  :icon_mad:
Now everybody knows that everything that I said is crap and you need to consider exactly the contrary.
I'm doomed...


Back to serious discussion.
I do disagree about the role of the Demi-gryphs vs the role of the Steam Tank. Yes, on the charge, the steam tank can hurt, however subsequent rounds it will not be able to dish out anywhere near as much damage as the Demi-gryphs. Add to that their ability to take a magic banner (such as flaming) and these guys will kill things and fast. Faster the Steam Tank grinding in subsequent rounds. They cannot tarpit, however, which the Steam Tank does excel at.

Plus, you mentioned it yourself, the Rare points percentage restriction will mean these guys can perform a similar role.
Rare I generally see going to a Steam tank, Helblaster and Magic Wagon. Not enough points in the slot left for another Steam Tank, and thats why the DGK will see a lot of action.
You're right. What I meant was that if you're already running a dual STank, maybe the DGK might be overkill.
DGK are indeed uniquely hard hitting during many turns. Plus they are quite fast.
For these two reasons, they can be considered a must-have (that's why I've bought mine already, while I'm not planning to buy anything else atm).
What should be discussed is how to run them:
- 3 vanilla or 4 FC flaming banner?
- stand alone or with WP/TGM?

Offline Lord Solar Plexus

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #23 on: April 24, 2012, 04:29:17 PM »
Not sure if I agree with the competative EMpire armys using and infantry what so ever. Maybe one unit of swordsmen to help break steadfast. I know Halberds are better at killing stuff, but Swordsmen are better at retaining ranks without character or buff support.

That's still not true, Joey, unless you field units of the same size. Killing more stuff and having more ranks is vastly superior to suffering one or two fewer casualties.

Quote
I think we will be seeing something like this:
...
The mobility and durability of the Cav lists are superior to any infantry build we can make right now. And with 5 solid combat elements and Life magic in support the army style can take a beating and still keep on trucking.

I think such a list will forever remain a minority choice. Mobility is better, yes, but durability is way lower, with the possible exception of the STanks, which could be taken in an infantry or mixed list as well.
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Offline Skyros

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Re: What everyones 8th edition Empire army will look like.
« Reply #24 on: April 24, 2012, 05:35:03 PM »
My flaggies, militia, mortars, and TGM are all staying home.

I'll probably (2500 list) bring something like the following

2 cannons
helblaster
helstorm
engineer

(in 7th I would take 3x cannon and 3x mortar and one engineer)

steamtank

(took in 7th will still take)

war altar
(more for unit buffs and LD bubble than powerful combat unit: if I'm not taking AOMI, mace of helstrum, VHS, etc total cost should be about the same)

BSB
(about the same cost, will no longer have flaming banner now)

Used to take L1 wizard, will no longer.

Will continue to take L4 wizard: either light or life.

Used to take unit of xbows. Dropping.

Took small unit of greatswords before. Probably still will. Might give them warbanner or flaming banner.

Took 2 blocks of halberds and one of swords before. Will probably be 2 of halberds and one of spears now. About the same points wise.

Hopefully the points from dropping things will let me shoehorn in a captain on pegasus and/or unit of DGK. Or just plain ole vanilla knights.  I'd also like to find the points to put my wizard lord on a wagon, if a light wizard. (or at least just buy the wagon).

I will probably not be taking any command options on my blocks. (Unless a tourny list where I need banners). 30 points saved across 4 blocks is very significant. I'm not paying 10 points for one more attack or +1 CR for anvil units or the ability to win ties for anvil units.

I can take 30 spearmen for 150 points. Or I can take 30 spearmen with FC for 180 points. Does FC increase the units power by 20%? Nooooope.

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I'll probably also make a char heavy list with WP in all units, witch hunters running around in skirmishing archer units, captains all over to hold the line, etc.