Thursday, October 09, 2014

7th Edition 40K - New Dark Eldar Codex Review - Troops

With Baron gone and haemonculi no longer unlocking Wracks, we're left with just the standard two choices for Troops in the Dark Eldar army. Warriors saw a lot more action that wyches in 6th edition for me, I wonder if the new book will redress that balance?

Firstly, and somewhat irritatingly, the Warrior/Trueborn and Wych/Bloodbride entries have been merged into a single page each. It makes it pretty awkward to figure out the price and options of each unit and it seems simply to be an IP protection move since there are no trueborn or bride models. That or they were saving paper?

Kabalite Warriors
Effectively the same as they were in the old book but 1pt cheaper. Splinter cannons are now 5pts more expensive though which cancels out some of the reduction in unit cost and Salvo means you can't fire them and assault. Shredders now have, Shred (seems obvious) but as ever they're a small blast so a blaster is probably a better choice. You can also take two blasters or shredders in a 20-man unit now.

What this basically means is the standard unit of 5 warriors with blaster in a venom is 5pts cheaper. I doubt many people will be taking a Sybarite just like before so it comes down to a choice between five warriors in a venom, ten in a raider or upto 20 on foot. I'd be tempted to stick 20 of them with two cannons with a webway portal toting character and pile 44 poisoned shots into an enemy unit without them being able to stop you! Of course you might not survive very long after arriving but it's still very tempting, especially when you consider that with a little luck you could down a wraithknight!

More likely I'll be running the standard 5-man venoms with a couple of packed out raiders and possible splinter racks.

The headline for wyches is that you can no longer give all of them haywire grenades and basically that sounds the death knell for them. They suffered a lot in 6th edition with FNP being reduced to 5+, vehicle explosions causing S4 hits and overwatch. You were lucky if any survived long enough to make it into combat! You'd still consider taking them though because haywires could often succeed where all your dark light weaponry had inexplicably failed. With that option taken away I can't see me using them very much at all.

Let's assume you could get them into combat alive though. The special weapons now offer either re-rolls to hit, re-rolls to wound or re-rolls 1s for both. Not too bad for 5pts a pop but perhaps not as good as before. It's worth noting you can take 3 of them in a 10+ strong unit without upgrading to brides. Combat Drugs will help out a lot if you can get a good roll too. That 4+ save and turn 3+ FNP will make them a great tarpit unit (especially turn 5 on when they're Fearless) but I just can't see much to make me spend 2pts more on them instead of a warrior.

I'd be very surprised to see wyches in many competitive lists. They were becoming less common already and the loss of haywires is hardly going to help them. The decision is how you run your warriors rather than whether to take them over wyches. It's a shame as I used to love fielding wyches and they've achieved some amazing feats over the years I've played Dark Eldar. I'm not saying I'll never run them again in friendly games but it's too easy a decision for competitive play. They're basically a case of bringing a knife to a gunfight!

The problem with kabalites is that against vehicles they're pretty limited. Poisoned shooting does nothing and with S3 and no grenades they won't be doing much in combat (until they get Furious Charge). That means you'll need some anti-tank elsewhere in the list or perhaps blasters in your kabalite units.

That was pretty straightforward then. Onto Elites!


  1. Sigh! Wyches, some of the best models in the game with the worst rules. Seriously GW how could you get this unit so wrong, they were pretty poor before, getting decimated by vehicle explosions, overwatch and being pretty poor in combat too. Nothing has changed and they have lost haywires......WTF! Now useless.........demmit MUST BE POSITIVE

    1. Well, it's the opposite of the SW dex where a previously underused troop choice (blood claws) is now seeing new life thanks to a points drop. Wyches will still make it into combat some times with their transport and fleet but they're mostly just good for holding units up as they last the punch to take them out.

      What I'm really struggling with at the moment is open topped vehicles. Not only are they +1 on the damage table (meaning anything can explode them unlike other vehicles), inflict S4 damage on occupants in an explosion and are restricted to 6" move to disembark an assault but they now suffer hits from template weapons when inside the transport! It might make sense from a realism point of view but today one of my venoms was hit by a heavy incinerator from a dreadknight. The first turn the vehicle lost a hull point and 4 guys inside were killed. The second turn the remaining guy suffered 6 (since it's D6 hits) hits despite being on his own. That's better than flaming him in the open (where admittedly he'd still die). Not only that but should there be anyone left when the vehicle explodes they'll still suffer hits from the explosion.

      I don't like to whinge (contrary to what you might think) but seriously that's stupid. Having AV10 vehicles is tough enough. Admittedly dreadknights aren't in every list but even a normal flamer could be devastating to a unit that should be safe in a transport!

    2. I got to agree there. I was really hoping they would do something to sort this problem out when the dex hit. I think as well as those issues I find that losing 5-8 models from a vehicle explosion is pretty lame for an army that relies on their vehicles (and I do not think you are whinging). I had a pretty positive response to the wolves dex but I can understand a bit of the rage now as I am REALLY disappointed with this so far. I think there will be some good and viable builds coming out but I am sad that we lost some units (wyches deserved the blood claws treatment). I a, sure I will calm down soon :)

    3. GW seems to have a habit of doing that in some ways. Possessed are a classic example, they were great Units with terrible Models for years, then they got good sculpts right as their Rules went down the toilet.

      Nids have a few examples, too. Raveners got nerfed to hell right when they got their new plastic kit, and the Pyrovore, which looks awesome, has been fighting for the title of worst unit in 40K since it was introduced.

  2. I'm going to s tournament this weekend (thankfully using the old codex), and I'm carying 22 haywire grenades accross 4 units (1 trueborn, 3 wyches), so they switch in codex is causing me to have to reevakuate my anti-tank.

    What do you think are the best replacements for haywire anti-tank ?

    Basically I'm bunged anti-tank in where ever I can; using the more expensive ravagers & voidraven bomber, adding in a razorwing jetfighter, swapping splinterborn back to blasterborn. Problem is that all the alternatives are much much more expensive leading to a much smaller army :(


    1. Well, wait and read the Fast Attack portion of this review.....


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