Thursday, January 20, 2011

Hornets, Shadow Specters and Warp Hunters, O My!

If you've wandered by the Forgeworld website recently, you may have noticed some new Eldar models. Or perhaps you've seen the pictures of these models from the last Games Day floating around the web.

I recently posted a review on these new UNOFFICIAL additions to the Eldar arsenal over on the Independent Characters' forum.

I won't repeat that review here because I'm lazy, but I would encourage you to head over there and read it if you're at all interested, as well as checking out the site in general. If you're not familiar with the ICs they are a biweekly podcast about 40k, and they tend to include a lot of material not only about the local gaming scene here in the South Bay but explore a lot of the rules material in a fun and creative way.

One caveat: just so you don't think I'm a hypocrite after my Hype article, remember that this review I posted contains MY opinions about the new units. You might have some unique insight that I lack. If so, I encourage you to share your opinions either here in the comments or in the forum thread itself.


  1. Shadow specre are a bit of a disappointment, You'd have to have some special terrain or a foolish opponent for them to survive past the first turn as they're a) so very easy to kill and b) so crippled by every loss. 5/10

    The warp hunter is beautiful, but not great. If they'd made it a large blast d-cannon it'd have something going for it, but as it is the even a single FP has a better main attack, more useful (though less cool) alt attack, better BS and is cheaper to boot. 4/10

    The hornet I love. It's really not that expensive - my preferred vyper load out is scatter laser and underslung cannon for 70pts a pop. The hornet with same config is 75pts - and for that extra 5pts you get armour 11 (only 1 point, but a significant 1), scout, star engines and not open topped! If someone told you you had a vyper upgrade that did all that you'd be biting their arm off. The problem is it can have such tasty weapons that if you can be tempted to go a bit mad.. the 170 pt holofielded twin pulse laser for instance...

  2. Your ratings are pretty close to mine, stuart. I forgot to mention it in my post but most Forgeworld models get a +1 adjustment due to cool factor alone (totally the case with the 'specters).

    Another thing about the hornet that kept me from giving it a better rating; there are too many ways to spam out S6 shots already. Do we really need another? I would prefer spending the points on something that hits really hard when it does hit and can take a single 'weapon destroyed' result and still shoot.

  3. heh, yeah they are all very lovely. I thought it was a particularly humorous twist releasing piccies of the mouthwateringly beautiful Warp hunter at more or less the same time as the 'back end of a bus' storm raven mail.

    Another thought occurs about the warp hunter - I hadn't considered that due to the d rules it doesn't really matter whether the template centre is over vehicles (i.e it can scatter and brush them and isn't reduced in st) which makes it compare much more favourably to the Fire prism than before. Still not as good as the trusty falcon though.

    I agree, but my definition of 'hits really hard' includes 16 st6 shots. Due to the prevelance of cover saves and invulnerables (3++ terminators for all now) low Ap/high st weapons rarely out perform a good scatter lasering. Also, I very much prize outflank and it's the only Eldar unit that can do it (ignoring rangers (as what's the point) and war walkers (as heavy support slots are for falcons and night spinners).

  4. While I think it's true that scatter laser spam will outperform things such as bright lances and starcannons, with the Hornet I see a lot of potential to get around cover saves.

    By turn 2 or 3, a fast skimmer squadron - outflanking or not - should be able to put itself anywhere it wants to be on the board in order to get around line of sight and cover issues. You won't be using these bad boys to push units out of terrain, but they most certainly will be able to make short of anything with a rear armor < 14.

  5. Bit of threadomancy, but I was fairly disparaging about the warp hunter initially, lamenting it's fairly mediocre tank-busting ability. But I've been a-thinking (and it's fair to say, a-looking) and now wonder if it's quite so bad as I first thought. First off, it's tank hunting ability is mediocre, it could try and take out a landraider, and it's got good odds for a single shot gun, but single shots are never that reliable, and it gets progressively worse against lower armour when you compare it to cheaper alternatives. But it struck me, this thing is not a tank hunter - it's a troop killer. D weaponry is nice, but when you give it the template rules (the aether rift) ignoring cover they become great. Even the standard tac squad in cover take some shifting (18 scatter laser shots or 24 star cannon-ings!) but this could nobble an entire squad in one pass.

    Range is a problem of course, but when you have a fast skimmer then it's effective range is around 24" so it's not so bad. The way I see using it is loading up with holofields and spirit stones and then reserving it. By turn two (or later) there should be some bodies out of tanks within 24" for it to go for, and the 12" move and holofields should help protect it from assault based reprisals. Sure, it's going to grab the attention of every big gun on the table, but then it's probably the most survivable thing eldar can get so if nothing else will suck some fire.

    What do you think? Is it actually fiendishly good or am I just making excuses for it cos it's sooo pretty? I have one on my painting table right now and will be using it in a fun doubles tournament in my club, so will report back with actual experience.

  6. I think your analysis is pretty good. That being said, it only really pays off against those heavy vehicles and marines. What if you are up against nids or orks? Would you REALLY want to get that close to a mob?

    In my experience needing a "6" to hit a skimmer isn't that effective against mobs; some of them will hit, and with armor 10 you will get a few glances. That means you will need to put spirit stones on it to avoid Crew Stunned (and thus being auto-hit the next turn).

    Yep, great against marines,etc, not so good vs. swarm-type armies that will get lots of attacks.