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Tutorial Cold One Cavalry Tactica

Discussion in 'Lizardmen & Saurian Ancients Tactics' started by Qupakoco, Jan 18, 2013.

  1. Qupakoco
    Skink Chief

    Qupakoco Keeper of the Dice Staff Member

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    EDIT: On top of fixing a few typos I have added a few simple statistics to the bottom of the post after the Final Thoughts section. Hope they help a bit.

    TL;DR – They are expensive. Don’t worry about Stupidity. Keep them on the flank. Stay out of frontal assaults unless it’s against a supporting unit. They are expensive.

    As to not remake the wheel, the much credit in this thread needs to be given to Barotok and his post concerning 7th edition tactics. That topic can be found here: Cold One Cavalry Tactica (Updated 9/2/09) (Beware, there are some rather childish jokes contained within.)

    What’s good about them?

    Move, Strike, Destroy

    First things first, these guys are one of our most elite units. They are essentially mounted Temple Guard. They have 4’s across the board, a hefty 3 attacks per model (including the Cold One chomp), and smack into an enemy at Strength 5. Not bad stats at all. A unit of 10 Cold One Cavalry models can dish out 15 Strength 5 attacks and 5 Strength 4 attacks on the charge. Against most enemies they will cause massive casualties in the first round of combat, as they are designed to do so. Their ability to weather an enemy attack is also impressive, having a Toughness of 4 and an Armor Save of 2+. Nothing to shake a stick at, unless that’s all you have.

    First to the Front

    They are one of our fastest units, falling second to Terradons and tied with the Carnosaur. Their Movement of 7 and the fact that they have Swiftstride gives us an 80.5% chance of making 14-inch charge. Be sure you don’t forget the extra D6 allowed by this special rule. If you do their chance of making a successful charge at 14-inches drops down to 58.3%. That’s a gamble in my book.

    Give ‘em the Shaft

    Having an Armor Save of 2+ and a Toughness of 4, these guys don’t fall as easy to shooting as some others would. Against regular shooting you need not worry too much. Even against the Elves they can often weather a hail of arrows for a few rounds. There are many tricks you can do to minimize casualties like taking banners, hiding them behind Skink screens, buffing them, debuffing enemies. Just try your best not to turn your flank to a bolt thrower.

    Courage Conquers

    Their final perk is that they are both Immune to Psychology and cause Fear. I personally believe that Fear is quite nerfed in this edition as even troops with a Weapon Skill of 1 can hit on a 5+. Indeed that is better than being hit on a 4+, so I guess there is a use for it. Of course being Immune to Psychology means you can gladly charge them into a Terror-causing Greater Daemon and not worry about them chickening out and returning attacks at a Weapon Skill of 1.

    What’s bad about them?

    It’s hard to lead a cavalry charge if you think you look funny on a horse

    They’re stupid. They look kinda ugly. Man, the Dark Elves got away with murder on that note. Their Cold Ones are SOOO much cooler looking than ours. Anyway, most people will tell you that you will find yourself failing their Stupidity test every other game or so. The statistics show that our Saurus have an 89.3% chance of success, so don’t get too worried about it. If you are crafty you can give them the Banner of Discipline and boost that up to a 94.9% chance of success. And if they are within BSB range they are almost guaranteed to pass at a 98.8% chance. Add both of those together and it’s up all the way to 99.7%. Remember that when you are in combat you do not have to test for it, so use that to your advantage. Besides, sometimes you just want to meander forward a couple inches, right? Guys? Guys…

    But it’s so Expensive…

    Their biggest drawback by far is their massive price tag. Just three of these guys cost the same as a single mounted Scar-Veteran. Why the heck would you dish out the points for the regular guys when you can make a unit of Scar-Vets? Consistently Strength 5, capable of taking magic items, capable of being the BSB or General, et cetera. I’m not sure I have an answer for that yet. Perhaps that can be a starting point for another thread. Earlier I mentioned them being essentially mounted Temple Guard, right? Apparently the addition of a Cold One is enough to more than double their points cost, but they don’t get halberds anymore. Oh, if you really want to get irate about their price tag, take a gander through the Dark Elves book and compare their Cold One Knights to ours. They have Weapon Skill 5, lances (at the same Strength of 4), Leadership 9, a 2+ save, Hatred, AND they cost 8 points less. I mean, come on! It’s just disgusting. Yeah, ok, we have Cold-Blooded, Toughness 4, and 2 attacks. But is the extra attack really justifiable for the price hike? Maybe it is, maybe it isn’t.

    Anyway, they’re spendy.

    Cold One Cavalry in 8th Edition

    I’m sure you have heard that cavalry isn’t as good in 8th as it was in 7th. While I cannot attest to this as I didn’t play during 7th, I do agree that the new rules for Close Combat have made cavalry units a little harder to field effectively. Steadfast is the biggest impasse by far, with supporting attacks and striking order coming in tied for second. Let’s take a look at each rule and how it interacts with our mounted lizards.

    Steadfast: At the current price tags our cavalry are very unlikely to ever be steadfast against another unit. But that is not what I am concerned about; the bigger and more common issue is another unit being steadfast against us. Anytime a unit has more ranks than another unit it is considered Steadfast. With most cavalry units rarely going over 3 full ranks, many rank and file troops are very likely to remain Steadfast.

    Striking Order: Back in the good ol’ days, the charging unit was allowed to strike first. This was a HUGE advantage. Nowadays all combat takes place according to Initiative steps. While the mounted Saurus have a decent armor save of 2+, the loss of one model can rob you from precious attacks in response.

    Supporting Attacks: This rule simply allows more attacks against our elite lizards. Always a bad thing, especially when combined with the prior rules. If we have 2 ranks it becomes beneficial.

    Overcoming our weaknesses

    This is definitely a hammer unit. The best tactic that Cold One Cavalry can use is flanking, particularly when combined with frontal assaults from regular Saurus. This means you are using your unit to smash into the side of large blocks of rank and file or to clean up those supporting units.

    Getting flank charges with this unit is a huge advantage. Not only do we gain an additional combat resolution point or two for being on the flank, we also mitigate the attacks sent back towards us. This means we can continue to hack and slash away at an inferior race with our spears and teeth while only receiving a handful of hits in return. In addition to this, there is a rule that can use to our advantage called Disruption. This rule states:
    For us that means we need 10 guys to flank and disrupt, potentially making an enemy unit lose the combat by an even higher margin. The downside to this is that you are now fielding a very expensive unit to accomplish your goal. If you are so fortunate or tactful to be fighting a single unit with both Cold One Cavalry and Saurus, you may have a chance of breaking Steadfast.

    As a flanking unit you can also use them to clean up enemy flankers. This would be things like skirmishers, light cavalry, some chariots, detachments, and the like. Whatever your foe may be, you should always plan on being on the giving end of a charge.

    How to field them

    As with most units, you can expect different configurations, sizes, upgrades, and whatnot. The following quote was written by Barotok concerning 7th edition tactics, found here: Cold One Cavalry Tactica (Updated 9/2/09)

    The Lizardmen rulebook has not changed since the spawning of this particular thread, so the majority of his points are still valid.
    Unit Sizes - with credit to Barotok

    Barebones: The smallest you can go with them is 5 models. This allows you a decent flanking unit with 15 attacks and a nice charge range. This unit type is best reserved for smaller games. It can also be used as a Scar-Veteran delivery system to give you the Look Out Sir save and add even more punch, but I’d just as soon consider spending these points on another Scar-Vet. As mentioned in the other thread, this is a viable size if you want to learn how to use them with some basic flanking roles.

    Barebones with Standard: This unit is slightly more expensive than its predecessor but it comes with some welcome bonuses. Having a standard is always a good thing as it grants you an extra combat resolution point. Having access to a magic standard is even better. In this case Haunchi’s Blessed Totem is likely the best bet, allowing you some flexibility in case you fluff a charge. Second to that would be either the War Banner or the Sun Standard of Chotec, depending on what you feel is better for your meta.

    Barebones with Champion and Standard: Similar to the prior, but now you have the ability to issue challenges and are given an extra attack. This is an upgrade you should consider if you have some points just lying around and aren’t sure what to do with them. The champion or standard bearer can be a Scar-Veteran if you’d like. As said before, they add quite a bit of punch to the unit and benefit from the protection of similar unit types.

    Extra Riders: At this point is assumed that you have taken Full Command. The addition of extra riders gives you some flexibility in combat and can allow your unit to reform into more useful formations. More riders can let you reform in combat to expand your frontage, giving you 2 more attacks per model in the front rank. This can be quite handy if you are really trying to lay the hurt on an enemy flank since 6 models in the front rank put out a total of 18 attacks. 7 gives you 21 and so on and so forth.

    Full Strength: For me this means either 10 riders with full command OR 9 riders with full command and a Scar-Vet OR 8 riders with full command and 2 Scar-Vets. The latter of these 3 is clearly the most powerful, but has the disadvantage of being a very expensive unit. The most common of these is 9 riders and a Scar-Vet, as this gives you access to an awesome character with a tough-as-nails unit and a magic banner. This kind of unit is the type where you can start playing the Disruption game, assuming you don’t lose one guy before combat.

    10+ Riders: I honestly haven’t tried this yet. Unfortunately these guys are so expensive that I likely will not. The only advantage I can see in this is the possibility of having 2 ranks of 6 models, giving you just that much more damage output in combat. The addition of a more riders beyond 10 could let you soak up some damage before combat so you can still try for disruption in case of casualties.

    Final Thoughts

    While Cold One Cavalry can indeed be a standalone unit, they perform much better in a supporting unit role. They can in some cases take on large infantry blocks or elite troops in head to head combat but that is not often the case. Their relatively small unit size means most troops will survive the first round of combat and begin to grind them down in the following turns with a high volume of attacks. They are not likely to be steadfast making several rounds of combat their undoing. This unit is not meant to replace the role of Saurus but to enhance it with supporting charges and keeping your own flank clear of the nasties.

    There is a psychological factor that they bring to the table as well. Seeing a full unit of them is impressive and can lead your opponent to make silly little mistakes here and there. For me it seems that they aren’t seen very often, making people unsure of what to do about them. Either that or they have bad memories of Scar-Vet Cowboys cleaning house.

    So there you have it. Comments and criticism are welcome.

    NUMBERS!!!

    Chance to pass Stupidity:

    For a Dark Elf:_________83.3%
    For a Saurus:__________89.3%--Yay for Cold-Blooded!
    With Ld 9:_____________94.9%
    With Slann at Ld 10:____ 98.1%--Assuming Inspiring Presence
    With BSB:_____________98.8%
    With BSB and Ld 9: _____99.7%
    With BSB Slann at Ld 10:_99.9%


    Chance to succeed on a Charge, based on Distance:

    9"___100%
    10"___99.5%
    11"___98.1%
    12"___94.9%
    13"___89.3%--Same as passing Stupidity!
    14"___80.5%
    15"___68.0%
    16"___52.3%--Getting risky...
    17"___35.6%
    18"___19.9%
    19"____7.4%
    20"______0%--Can't roll 13 on 2 dice, silly kid.


    The following was included in the 7th edition tactica, written by Barotok. The chart was made by snowywlf.

    Example Damage Potential:
    Below is a chart which exhibits the damage potential of a unit of Cold One Cavalry along with the addition of a Sarus Scar Veteran.

    5 Cold One Cavalry
    Full Command
    (225)

    Sarus Scar Veteran
    Scimitar of the Sun Resplendent
    (163)

    ColdOneAttacks.jpg
    (thanks to snowywlf)
     
    Scalenex likes this.
  2. Anubris
    Saurus

    Anubris New Member

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    I was looking forward to this post when you were talking about it in another topic considering cold one cavalry. I'm probably going to end up trying them since they are included in the lizardmen battalion. However, if you want to use 9 CoC + 1 scar vet (for steadfast) you would end up buying another unit of cold one riders for just 1 rider... that sucks :(
    I had planned on buying the battalion + a scar vet cowboy and just leaving one CoC out of the unit, but being new to all the rules it doesn't seem like a very favorable unit size does it?
     
  3. Rhodium
    Kroxigor

    Rhodium New Member

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    Excellent article, exceedingly interesting,

    "Of course being Immune to Psychology means you can gladly charge them into a Terror-causing Greater Daemon and not worry about them chickening out and returning attacks at a Weapon Skill of 1."

    Terror causing units still cause fear in fear causing units so you do still need to be worried about WS1!
     
  4. Scalenex
    Skink Priest

    Scalenex Keeper of the Indexes Staff Member

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    I knew your Tactica would be worth the wait!

    And they are Initiative 2. That’s good for a Saurus (I play a lot of low Initiative opponents so this sometimes matters).

    You can get another Cold One Rider for the cost of the Banner of Chotec, I think the extra casualty will give you more protection versus shooting than the Banner, unless you are fighting Wood Elves maybe.

    I’ve used the War Banner defensively since it once caused me to lose CR by one point less than I would have otherwise lost saving the unit from breaking. One point on an Ld test makes a huge difference for Cold Blooded units.

    I’ve tried going 11 or 12 once or twice I can lose one or two and still keep my extra ranks. Generally the dice gods laugh at me when I do this and I lose x +1 where x is the number of extra Cavalry I took. It’s still a good THEORY.

    Immune to Psychology trumps the fact that Terror outweigh Fear. That’s why most Temple Guard don’t have to take Fear tests either.
     
  5. Qupakoco
    Skink Chief

    Qupakoco Keeper of the Dice Staff Member

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    Yeah, Games Workshop is mean like that. They give you a box of 16 Saurus, which is not quite enough. They give you 24 Skinks, which is good, but the last 4 guys usually sit at home or get converted. And then they give you 8 Cold One Cavalry. Just weird numbers.

    They only reason I prefer the units of 5 or 10 is because of the benefits of having a full rank. If you only have 9 guys you can still play them effectively, you just happen to fall short of the Disruption game by a mere one model. But then having a Scar-Vet can provide the damage output to offset the loss of disruption. And adding in the War Banner will help too.

    For your battalion box, I would recommend that you model at least 1 of the riders as a Scar-Vet, if not 2 models. There are plenty of bits in the kit to give you that flexibility. That way you'll have the option of Scar-Vets and enough rank and file Cold One Cavalry to take them with the unit.


    Good points on the banners. I generally take the War Banner with my Temple Guard as a defensive measure, not an offensive one.

    I actually have 23 Cold One Cavalry models, though most aren't fully assembled. I wrote up a list with 2 units of 10, but the point cost was so painful that I dropped one so I could get some Saurus.

    Thanks! I kind of want to do the same thing with Stegs now.
     
  6. n810
    Slann

    n810 First Spawning

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    Actualy the odd unit size per box is a holdover from 6th edition,
    back then the minimum width of a unit was 4 wide,
    so having 8, 12, and 16 models per pox made sense then.
     
  7. Anubris
    Saurus

    Anubris New Member

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    With rank and file cold one cavalry, you mean 4x2 or? I'm still figuring out all the rules :p I got the idea of making one badass cold one rider --> it will look like a scar-vet.
     
  8. VonManson
    Skink

    VonManson New Member

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    Musicians also help with swift reform that can benefit a fast unit the turn after it has over run on the flank.
     
  9. GCPD
    Bastiladon

    GCPD Active Member

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    Good write up. I'm really saddened by Cold One Cavalry in the current rules because they feel like such wasted potential. They are very nearly very good, but have too many drawbacks - most of all on price. Even T4 2+ armour save doesn't really feel like much (or maybe its just that I fight armies with too easy access to high strength).

    That being said, I've crunched the numbers on 10 cavalry buffed by lore of light spells and it seems pretty impressive, so I'm going to give them a try.
     
  10. Qupakoco
    Skink Chief

    Qupakoco Keeper of the Dice Staff Member

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    ^^^ Yah, the price is awful. And yes, any Saurus unit buffed by Light gets pretty mean. Especially with another attack and ASF at initiative 10. Talk about a meat grinder...

    When I say rank and file I am just referring to regular Cold One Cavalry riders. The ones that aren't characters. Since you need at least 5 to make a unit, keeping a few as regular riders is a good idea.

    This is true. If you are lucky enough break/run down an enemy you can really set yourself up for some nice follow-up charges.

    I added some numbers to the original post, hopefully allowing my fellow generals to make better informed decisions.
     
  11. Lawot
    Kroxigor

    Lawot Active Member

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    A big unit of Cold One Cav is the one use I have for Kroq-Gar. Try fielding him in a 3k game, buy a few Skinks, and then spend the rest of your Core points on Cav. Watch them get +2 or +3 rank bonus, and steadfast against support troops! It's lots of fun.
     
  12. ZaGreekie
    Chameleon Skink

    ZaGreekie Active Member

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    I wound be really interested to see this tactica updated as now in reality coldones are not that expencive, i mean without spears they are quite cheep and 4x S4 attacks per model AND extra attacks on 6's i think it can make them a very viable heavy cav now.

    im going to try them out a bit more but i think they may be one of our new diamonds in the rough.
     
  13. Wizgamer
    Cold One

    Wizgamer New Member

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    A fresh tactica would be interesting due to not being able to take them as core alongside Kroq-gar any more.....
     
  14. Qupakoco
    Skink Chief

    Qupakoco Keeper of the Dice Staff Member

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    Oh, I suppose I could update this.... Admittedly I've only played one game since the new book came out. I'd like to run around with some spear-less guys and see how they handle. Kinda think they'll be better, especially with easy access to Wyssan's Wildform and cheaper Scar-Vets.
     
  15. ZaGreekie
    Chameleon Skink

    ZaGreekie Active Member

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    I think spear less CoC could be a great unit they are oddly enough fairly cheep now for the amount of attacks they have and there saves.
     
  16. Man0waR
    Kroxigor

    Man0waR Member

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    I am waiting for an cold one saurus cavalry box to assemble DE coldones to Saurus riders. For now i only have 5 6th edition cold one riders. (as i use the champion one as a Cowbow i "cannot" field them).

    Until i do it i can only theoryhammer. And this is what I've thought.

    - Nearly naked slann lvl4 Beast; Skink lvl2 beast ; Skink lvl2 beast; Whatever you do and you roll with the spells (who has Amber Spear, Savage beast and Kadon) you should have the 3 caster with Wyssans.
    - Engine of the gods. -1 to lore of beast.
    - 2 units of 5 naked cold one riders. (or maybe a larger one if I want to babysit a Cowbow)

    Whatever the winds of magic gift you. You have 3 attemps to buff your units. So i could throw a 150 points light support unit against an average infantry with no hope of success and turn it into a major carnage with a signature spell value dropped from 10 to 8. That means you need with your slann a 4 dice roll value, with your skink priest a 6 dice roll value.

    So you can reserve your 3 last power dice for 2 Wyssan's cast on your key units. Even in a poor winds of magic roll it becomes better.
     
  17. lbisson
    Cold One

    lbisson New Member

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    Nice writeup. In lower point games I am having a field day with these guys. 5 CO and a Scarvet on CO really lay the obsidinite to opponents. :)

    Only edit I would suggest....the new Lizardmen rulebook took away the magic standard for these guys. So all of the goodness about buffing with banners is no longer valid. :(
     

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