Monday, January 26, 2015

Skaven: Different list variations

Killing everybody.. yes, yes..

Having played a ton of games with my Skaven on UB so far, I've decided to try a few more list variations.  There's three of them..

Real quick, let's talk about list design in general.  Keep in mind that all of my lists have been designed with ETC Draft 2 in mind.  That's the new hotness where I play and the majority of players on UB are rocking that.  You can find a link to the ETC restrictions in some of my previous posts, and I really suggest you guys give this new version a go.  I was really hating on ETC a couple of years ago because the comp was much harder than I like, but now ETC is considered by most to be light comp with a few tweaks.  This is really good for players like me who likes minimal change to the game while preventing the most heinous power builds from occurring.  The 5 dice cap and LoS on killer death spells is also a blessing.

If you guys are reading this on the East Coast, get ready because ETC will be the main ruleset for majors over there.  Now, let's go over the lists that I've been tinkering with, check it out.

The Two Towers
2399 ETC
11 deploys

LORDS:
Grey Seer = 265
Lore of Ruin
Earthing Rod
+Screaming Bell = 200

HEROES:
Chieftain BSB = 82
Halberd, CShield, Ironcurse

Lv.1 Plague Priest = 129
Flail, Scroll
+Plague Furnace = 150

Warlock Engineer = 45
Doomrocket

CORE:
45x Stormvermin, FC, Storm Banner = 390
50x Skaven Slaves, FC = 106
49x Skaven Slaves, FC = 104
1x Giant Rat Pack = 23
1x Giant Rat Pack = 23
1x Giant Rat Pack = 23

SPECIAL:
32x Plague Monks, FC, Plague Banner = 279

RARE:
1x Hell Pit Abomination, Spikes = 250
1x Warp Lightning Cannon = 90
1x Warp Lightning Cannon = 90
1x Doomwheel = 150

A few points tweaks here and there, but you'll see mostly good stuff on the lords/heroes selection.  The BSB is a little fragile in there for someone who's going to be on the front lines, but since the entire unit is Unbreakable I'm not all that concerned.  Yes, swinging at the Grey Seer is troublesome and yes, having two giant blocks of infantry will limit my deployment options, but so far I've been very successful vs. the Dwarfs, WoC, Empire and HE lists I've played against.  I don't think most of my opponents faced something like this in a long time and I'm happy to show them that old lists can still work.  The Plague Monks are especially effective against anything Elves once they hit combat, and they absolutely tear up things like BotWD blocks, Halberdiers, and even armor if I force enough wounds.  Even if you stay in there with heavy armor and S3 bounces off you, I don't care either because I'm Unbreakable and my Furnace will be denying combat res and dropping smack in your face every turn while forcing Toughness tests all day.

Rat Storm
2400 ETC
12 deploys

LORDS:
Grey Seer, Ruin = 275
Power Scroll
+Screaming Bell = 200

HEROES:
Chieftain BSB = 122
Halberd, 4+ Ward, Charmed Shield

Lv.1 Plague Priest = 129
Flail, Scroll

Warlock Engineer = 45
Doomrocket

CORE:
45x Stormvermin, FC, Storm Banner = 390
50x Skaven Slaves, FC = 106
50x Skaven Slaves, FC = 106
1x Giant Rat Pack = 23
1x Giant Rat Pack = 23
1x Giant Rat Pack = 23

SPECIAL:
29x Plague Monks, FC, Plague Banner = 258
5x Gutter Runners, Slings, Poison = 90
5x Gutter Runners, Slings, Poison = 90

RARE:
4x Storm Fiends, Rattling Guns = 340
1x Warp Lightning Cannon = 90
1x Warp Lightning Cannon = 90

You can either set these Storm Fiends up in 2x2 or 4x1, it doesn't really matter.  You just walk these guys forward and let loose with 12D6 worth of S5 AP magical shots that ignores everything but cover.  Against some lists, they can be utterly fucking ridiculous since it outright murders knight-heavy Empire lists, most VC lists, and mostly any lists that doesn't shoot back or have weaker shooting elements.  They suffer against heavy-shooting armies from Elves and light councils in general, but otherwise they're horrible to deal with if your opponent knows what he's doing.  I'm missing out on the Abomination and Doomwheel in this list, but that's fine as long as I can pour enough hot lead into my opponents to make their points back.  If you think about it, if I eliminate all their shooting options and chaff, the Storm Fiends will walk around, utterly unopposed and kill everything on the board with their shooting.

Now that you guys see the lists, here's some brain cake to think about.  Skaven, being one of the older books, still sports some of the nastiest stuff out there  The biggest boon that Skaven has is their don't care attitude toward elite, heavy armor style armies.  If you're running a knight bus, you might as well pull it from the table when fighting most Skaven lists.  I know for a fact my current VC list will most likely auto-lose to my Skaven because I just have no way of dealing with their damage output from range.  Storm Banner is a luxury and it will seriously hamper armies that rely on ranged shooting, and if I don't need it, I don't need to use it.  In my Two Towers list, a Storm Banner is a huge boon since it can keep my hammer units alive until I reach combat.  In my Rattling Fiend list however, they are less useful because it also impacts my shooting.

Another really ridiculous thing about the new Storm Fiends is that they add another dimension of power and confusion for your opponents.  During list construction, do they build to fight something like the Abom, Wheel and 2x WLC configuration or do they anticipate facing the 4x Rattling Fiends?  What about 2x units of Rattling Fiends or a unit with Grinder Fist?  Do they anticipate the Gutter Runners which is generally weaker vs. heavy armor lists with minimal shooting, but can they risk drawing a Skaven running max shooting?  How will armies that rely on breaking enemies and minimal attrition handle 2 huge Unbreakable blocks that can potentially ignore armor saves?  What if I have that Assassin with Weeping Blade and Potion of Strength?  The only thing that's really apparent to me now since the release of the Storm Fiends is how much they're going to change how people view Skaven.  If they were Special like some people suggest, they would be utterly broken.

I suspect that we might see a +1 restriction for Storm Fiends and maybe even more if I take the Grinder Fist on one of them.  Having them come up on the backfield of my opponents and blast away his stuff after charging a WM is kinda ridiculous.  Regardless, if ETC comps them, I can just swap out the Storm Banner with Razor Standard and call it a day.

1 comment:

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