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8th Ed. Beating Vampires

Discussion in 'Lizardmen & Saurian Ancients Tactics' started by Taipan, Jan 16, 2012.

  1. Taipan
    Temple Guard

    Taipan Member

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    Didn't see a topic already, thought I might chime in. Can't comment on the SC's, but I suspect its the usual story of 1-2 decent options and a whole pile of meh-to-silly choices. Generic characters seem to always be better in the new army books.

    Looking over the reviews and builds people are starting to make, I don't think there will be a huge change required for our already effective builds;

    Slann is still a must-have. You'll need magic to take down the Hexwraiths, the Grave Guard Deathstar (it's still largely intact), Spirits, Cairn Wraiths, Banshees etc. And of course for nuking the Mortis Engine/Coven Throne/Terrogheist should they bring one. Light and Shadow are both strong choices, which you take depends largely on your opponent's build. If you can, Double Slann and take both (their combat Lords are generally going to stomp our Saurus heroes anyway).

    Old-Blood can still work, you'll need to think carefully about his item selection. If you have Lore of Light on the Slann, you can take Burning Blade/Piranha Blade and buff him to I10/ASF so he can duke it out with the enemy Vamps. If you take Shadow, Sword of Swift Slaying/Hornet will be essential so you don't get assassinated before you can swing. Getting Armour of Destiny/Talisman of Preservation is a good choice, maxing out armour won't help against Vamps and Death/Metal sniper spells will still get you if you don't have ward.

    Scar-Vets will badly need Light buffs or ASF swords if you are going to duke it out with Vamps. EOTG is great, 5+ ward against Mortis Engine soul sucking and his gun magic helps and the S5 on 'Burning Alignment' lets you kill off his Ethereal units without too much difficulty. Plus the Ancient Steg is great for breaking apart Skeleton or Zombie tarpits, they're unlikely to hurt it and you can outgrind them with Impact hits and Thunderstomps. Obviously a charge of last resort, and Varghests/Terrogheists/Crypt Horrors will still wreck your face (same for Vamps and Death/Metal sniper spells).

    Saurus are going to die hard, even with Light buffs you'll probably get dragged under by sheer numbers (with 'Nehek' being AOE, their cheap horde formations just keep staying Steadfast). Skinks are pretty close to useless, the big monsters have Regen (albeit low but it can get buffed by Mortis Engine) and lots of wounds, so blowpipe sniping is hard. Blowpipes can still be good against Vargheists and Crypt Horrors (provided you hit Crypt Horrors with a flaming attack first). Trade your Core to buy time for the Slann to unleash magic to obliterate the hordes.

    Temple Guard need substantial buffing to swing combats. Again, like with Saurus, I seriously doubt their ability to outgrind the Skeletons or even Grave Guard. You'll cut down things like Vargheists, maybe even the big monsters. The big blocks of never ending undead are going to be tough though. Magic will be crucial to whether you face down a pitiful remnant or an unstoppable wave.

    Salamanders are once again worth their weight in gold. You can focus your magic elsewhere, whilst these guys annhilate the Grave Guard Deathstar and Skeleton horde blocks. Expect the Vamp player to slam Ethereal or fast movers into them to kill/shut them down, but even 1-2 turns of flaming will cause so much carnage. Focus fire to achieve best results, if you let the Vamp player have even a few left of a unit he'll just multi-cast 'Nehek' until they're back to a useful size.
     
  2. Hinge
    Saurus

    Hinge New Member

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    I think that the biggest challenge VC present are ethereals.

    Spirit Host Bases. These now can be taken as a single base. They will be able to lock up a steg indefinitely, chase skinks and sallies, and can hold a combat block for a turn with the BSB close by.

    Hexwraiths. Fast Cav Ethereals. Really? They strike with St5, no armor save, magical and flaming attacks. Forget their special attack, these guys are worth it on their own.

    Wraith heros. We got a taste of these lately. They are cheap, disposable heroes that the VC can use for a number of different tricks.

    Let’s not forget the Black Coach. Its impact hits now have KB btw.

    Taking a couple of scar vets armed with magic weapons will be mandatory. Their job will not be to tackle the vamp but to counter all the ethereals. The case for light is even more compelling since it includes a magic missile.
     
  3. Taipan
    Temple Guard

    Taipan Member

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    They're annoying, but easily killed with gun magic or 'Burning Alignment'. Rolling 'Chain Lightning' or 'Thunderbolt' on the Skink Priest would be handy too.

    Hideously expensive though, so only small units for harassment. Just get them to commit within 'Burning Alignment' range, or dakka them with gun magic from the Slann/Priests. People are overrating them IMO, Grave Guard are still just as insane as previously, more so now they can get re-rolls and ASF easily.

    Banshees are especially annoying, with their screech that kills off our expensive infantry easily. Again though, within 'Burning Alignment' range or gun magic reach, they're exceptionally easy to kill.

    That does suck. On the plus side, still needs 6's, and it no longer sucks up power dice (hooray!). 3+/4+ means nuking with 'Pit' is probably preferable to trying to kill it with Light gun magic.

    Yeah, Scar-Vets Light is going to be the weapon of choice if he's spamming Ethereals. Shadow can be good as well though, Pendulum can snipe down lone Ethereal heroes and Miasma can slow down Hexwraiths until you can focus on them.

    I'm wondering, is Lore of Fire vaguely possible? Everything denies Regen, the dakka magic is the entire point of the Lore, and putting 'Sword of Ruin' on a unit of Salamanders elevates them from 'oh god' to 'sweet mother of mercy concede now'.
     
  4. Hinge
    Saurus

    Hinge New Member

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    Dealing with one or two ethereals is not much of a challenge, it is the massed ethereals that worry me. Spam enough and you will face target saturation. There is also the trick of having the entire front rank of a Zombie unit composed of Wraiths. The Zombies provide ranged protection and mass while the wraiths provide security and hitting power.

    The back up skink priest helps if we get the right spells, though the higher casting costs of Thunderbolt and Chain Lightning means a L2 needs to throw more dice then we may want.

    I really like your idea of Flame. It is an underrated lore IMO. Provides a good magic missile and makes every unit in our army an ethereal hunter with Fire Cloak and Sword of Ruin. Flame cage is also an awesome spell! I think if I knew I was facing VC, I would strongly consider the lore. I play “all-comers” style though and I think they are many more synergies with Light. Two (and potentially three) magic missiles and a couple of magic weapons should see us through. Throw a doomfire ring on someone?

    I think if you see hexwraiths, it will be a large unit (10). Expensive but you either need to go all out or leave them at home. They would be too easy for a single magic missile to demolish if you only take 5.

    At least no more regening grave guard or helm!
     
  5. Taipan
    Temple Guard

    Taipan Member

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    It's a bit silly though. I mean, it's like that trick Goblin armies pull by spamming Warlords with great weapons in the front rank of a giant unit of Gobbos.
    Also, the more Ethereals he brings, the less Grave Guard, Blood Knights, Vamps, monsters etc he can field. They have to come out of Heroes, Special or Rare. So, there will be a trade-off with Ethereal spam, where you reach a point of no return (ie go all out or scale it back to fit in something else).

    Well, his focus will be getting us in close-combat and grinding us to death. So, boosting the range probably won't be necessary, 24" is perfectly fine. They're both 3 dice spells really, 4 if you want to be 100% sure. Plus, by having 'Rumination' on both your Slann, you can usually afford it (unless Winds was really low, in which case you adhere to the golden rule of 'Priests don't matter, Slann need the dice more').

    Not a bad idea. Maybe put the Ring on an EOTG Priest (he has excellent LOS), or on one of the Slann (enchanted item so doesn't compete with 'Cupped Hands' or scroll). Between that and the Light Slann with 'Burning Gaze' you can deny Regen easily and Banishment will be a lot more effective.
    I agree though, in a tournament situation, I would never take Fire. Light and Shadow are hands down the best Lores we have (Life is way too reliant on 'Throne' being up). So yeah, most likely I'll drop the defensive talisman I have on my EOTG Priest and give him scroll+Doomfire Ring.

    Eh, I think if anything Grave Guard are better now. IIRC they got a price reduction, and with ASF and re-rolls to hit able to be cast onto them from Lore of Vampires (and Barrows still being an option), they still outgrind everything in the game. Weapon Skill only mattered because people were relying on the great weapons to kill stuff, not the KB ability. Now however, with their re-rolls to hit and ASF, they're going to get more 5+ coming up and slapping down our guys with no save (except parry of course).
     
  6. Ejpok
    Temple Guard

    Ejpok New Member

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    Hello,
    I just wanted to say that a naked Vampire is 75 points more expensive than a naked Old Blood, so i don't think that our fighting lords don't have a chace, because this is a Tactical battle game not arena deathmatch:)
    I am very pleased, because with the new VC book the EotG is not so passe anymore:)
    As for the lores of magic, i think Shadow is a Good option, VC Cannon fodder units don't have high I so Numer 4 and 5 are good, And when you Decrease thier T to 1 and burne them will salamander they won't be able to rise them back fast enough, especially when you have cogitation:)
     
  7. Taipan
    Temple Guard

    Taipan Member

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    The thing you're missing is they combine their mage and fighter into a single package. If Old-Bloods were Level 2 casters with a Lore akin to Vampires, they'd be nearly as expensive.
    The thing is, unlike us, they can have their cake and eat it. We have to buy a Slann for magic artillery and support, but if we want a Lord-level fighter, there are tough decisions to make, because they're different choices, and Slann are already $$$.

    Vamps have better Weapon Skill, Initiative, magic item selection, perks, magic ability...yes they are a lot more expensive, but its not out of proportion. They can still fit in two Lord Vamps at 3k, where we have either two Slann or a Slann and Old-Blood (singular).

    Mmm yeah, gonna be looking forward to burning multiple Ethereal units with it at close range. Its a bit annoying we only get a Strength upgrade, I'd prefer the extra D6 hits perk that Light spells get. Guess that would be OP though, as it also ignores armour.

    The thing is though, they don't need to IF 'Nehek', when there will be multiple casters and it's AOE. Removing 6's is annoying, and it's highly effective at shutting down ultimates from other Lores.
     
  8. Lord Tsunami
    Salamander

    Lord Tsunami Member

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    I havent gotten my VC book yet, so i wont speculate too much. All i know is that i like the models very much :D

    I did some quick calculations with a horde of 50 skeletons with spears against 25 saurus (5x5) in a grinding fest. I assumed the skeletons will be healed by 4 models each turn (im not sure if this is reasonable, but with dispels it sounds reasonable to me). Anyway, In a grinding fest (with no buffs and no failed fear tests) the skeletons should come out on top after around 7-8 rounds of fighting. The saurus then start to lose fighting models and roughly half of the skeletons remain. The saurus will win the combats, but it takes too long to eradicate all skeletons, and you will run out of saurus before he runs out of skeletons.

    BUT, if you decide to reform your saurus to 10x2 after the first round of combat you will absolutely demolish the skeletons. After 3 rounds of fighting, only around 15 skeletons remain to face your ~18 saurus. After 4 rounds they will be gone. This may be a very important technique to use against undead (and i am sure many ppl already do so). I know it is an overly simplified model, but the results are so massively different between the 5x5 and the 10x2 formation that it simply cant be wrong. Every kill you do counts as 2 kills (since he will lose one more to combat res) and thus it is incredibly potent to maximize your attacks.

    I havent done any calculations for GG, but i assume that we are indeed in deep shit there :p Though as usual, buffs can swing any combat any way. T1 GG will obviously be in trouble, and ASF guys will eat saurus for breakfast.
     
  9. forlustria
    Kroxigor

    forlustria Member

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    but will 10 saurus across still all be in base contact against 5 across skelies.
     
  10. Lord Tsunami
    Salamander

    Lord Tsunami Member

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    a skeleton HORDE. ;)

    A skeleton unit that runs 5 wide can be attacked by 6 saurus, and you could reform to that if you wish, but that is much more like the first case i calculated (5x5 saurus) except that the skeletons will only hit back with 15 attacks, making them kill a single saurus every turn on average. that will dramatically change how long the saurus unit will last. The skeltons wont die for a whole battle (basically) but the saurus will keep winning the combat. none of them are going anywhere and two equally sized units have locked each other down.
     
  11. Scizorsfury
    Jungle Swarm

    Scizorsfury New Member

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    I have the new Vampire book, what do you guys want to know about them? Biggest change so far is Zombies went up 1S and T and down in cost...Characters can join them now and they can pursue you. Lots of new Vampire powers and the one I hate is the banner that adds a dice to me taking fear test plus they have a Vamp Power that makes me re-roll successful fear checks or it and my BSB cancel each other out. The Raise Dead spell can create Skeletons now. You can not keep casting necromancy spells over and over again. Krell is a Monster and in a unit of Grave Guard with Heinrich Kemmer in it can be annoying.
     
  12. eppe
    Kroxigor

    eppe New Member

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    Just played, and beat, my buddies new VC list. I'll post a battle report tomorrow. The Mortis Engine was really cool.
     
  13. skirder
    Skink

    skirder New Member

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    Playin 2.5k today

    taking a decked out slann, some scar vets for magic attacks, 2 medium blocks of saurus and a large tg block, some chameleons for the monsters and some sallies. will post about how it went tonight or tomorrow. He was unbeatable with the last book... so it's not an entirely promising game :p
     
  14. Pyre
    Saurus

    Pyre Member

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    OK let me preface this by saying I have the new book and have played my vamps for about two years without interruption so in theory I know some of what I'm talking about... in theory...

    First, some people are making a BAD miscalculation. A single slann will not, I repeat NOT, shut down the VC magic phase now. With how cheap Necromancers are now, and with the Mortis Engine adding +2 to all Necromancy casts, a hero necro can crank out spells almost as well as a lord. Also, even removing sixes, a vampire/necro level 4 will cast the base invocation on anything but a 1 or a 2... and that's only because of "lack of power." Vampires only can also take "Dark Acolyte" that adds another d3 to all Invocation rolls. On AVERAGE a caster Vampire hero sitting next to the Mortis Engine is +6 to cast Invocation with Dark Acolyte.

    Second, Hex Wraiths are a threat to some units but not to anything with more than a few models. Their "Soul Hunters" ride through is neat but nothing to worry about. I can see their main use being to ride through a unit to get to something behind the enemy lines the next turn. Also they can only use Soul Hunters in the remaining moves phase, so no charging and tagging something on the way in.

    Third, the new Master Necromancer is 200 pts for a lvl 4 caster. That means you're going to see a LOT of combat vampire lords marauding up the flanks with his Vargheist buddies while the squishy necromancers use Dance Macabre to move the 120+ zombie hordes up the fields at pace. All this means the march bubble limitation really isn't going to slow a well deployed army down much, and all the vampiric units can march on their own anyway.

    On the whole, believe it or not, the new army is pretty well balanced though. Its much harder to use lores outside of those granted by the book (necromancy, shadow, and death). With the magic WS hat gone, and no more regeneration banner the VC army looses a lot more models per combat. So while they can out grind a lot there is a threshold that once they start loosing too many too fast, or if they have a crap magic phase, they fall apart quickly.


    Pyre


    Oh two more things: the Black Coach doesn't "take" the dice any more, they can still be used as normal; and the death of the general just causes one round of crumble as long as there is one other wizard with Necromancy on the table.
     
  15. skirder
    Skink

    skirder New Member

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    While lore of light definitely boosts us, as well as the bonuses it has against the undead, I really think Shadow or Life would be better.

    We can still shut down their phase IF THEY DON'T FOCUS ON A MAGIC HEAVY ARMY. If they do, then choose which spells you need to dispel carefully. Invocation is now the God of attrition.

    Also, there are some nasty combos that cause some units to be incredibly difficult to wound.


    Battle Report here:
    http://www.lustria-online.com/threads/2500-vs-vc-lizards-lose.8613/
     
  16. theodoris
    Saurus

    theodoris Member

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    I going against the new VC next friday.

    I`m going to use the stegadon with skink chief and war spear.
    It makes the impact hits 2d6 magical, since we realy need magic attacks against VC this would be an great option.

    So you would have 2d6 magical impact hits +3 attacks In. 6 str. 6 attacks, also magical.
     
  17. Moniker
    Kroxigor

    Moniker Member

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    So a mate of mine plays VC and he's been playing around with builds for a killy vampire lord, and suffice to say the thing is a monster capable of causing ten wounds a round.

    Anyone else have any experience with these things? What strategies do you have to kill it or mitigate the damage? What are good options for our army to counter this thing? The obvious solution would be to crumble the unit he's in, but his contribution to combat res is usually quite large.

    Let me hear your thoughts!
     
  18. JWhex
    Jungle Swarm

    JWhex New Member

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    Have people replying actually played against good vampire lists?

    You cant compare skeletons to anything without accounting for the buffs the get from mortis engine, corpse cart and spells. The army has a lot of synergy.

    Ghouls can be made into a just horrendous death star.

    Vamps can lower your leadership and if they get a couple or three units on your unweildy slann/temple gaurd unit you can just lose horrendous numbers to the damn scream attack.

    They arent unbeatable but people here are under rating the vc and not accounting for their synergy.

    Locally people arent using grave gaurd much because there are cheaper ways to make a death star.


    If you want to learn how to beat vampires you need to play against skilled opponents. Theoryhammer from reading the book doesnt help all that much.
     
  19. Vallek
    Saurus

    Vallek New Member

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    I thought these forums were practically built on theorycrafting and personal experience. And not every area of the world has a highly competitive VC player.. yet we are still able to come up with solid tactical plans. For instance, I know I'd bring a skink priest with a cube of darkness, a slann with lore of life, and a fat saurus block with banner of eternal flame.

    Remove the regenerations saves from the mortis engine (as well as the crypt horrors if applicable) with the flaming attacks. Lore of life will bump up our saurus to T8 and if you cast shield of thorns then every unit in contact with that block is taking 2d6 S3 magical hits at the end of EACH magic phase. Wait until you are thoroughly locked into CC THEN pop the Cube of Darkness. 50/50 chance of ending their magic phase and stopping them from recouping their losses.

    VC win through attrition, taking away even ONE magic phase from them once they are tied up could utterly destroy whatever unit the saurus are locked in with because that is 3 rounds of CC and most likely 3 rounds of unstable losses. The chances of them causing enough wounds against T8 models to even threaten CR is very unlikely.

    Pop a nice fat Scar-Vet on the front lines with armor of destiny, great weapon, and VotFF.. since Great weapons are mundane they would benefit from the Banner of Eternal flame.. VotFF only says attacks made with mundane weapons COUNT as poisoned and magical, thus not making the weapon magical itself. This means it is 4 S7, flaming, poisonous, magical attacks with a 3+ AS, 4+ Ward for relatively few points.
     
  20. Alvincacti
    Skink

    Alvincacti New Member

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    You can't have the armour of destiny and Vofff on a scar vet together...not enough points
     

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