Further Skaven thoughts

Won my game on Tuesday. We rolled Dawn Attack, which helped me out a lot: most of his units were cramped into one flank while I got spread much units pretty evenly, with a number of units to place wherever I wanted.

My list was basically the one I’ve been running, but with the third clanrat unit dropped in favor of a Warp-Lightning Cannon and a Plagueclaw Catapult; I’ve really not spending enough of my Rare allowance and I wanted to give them a try.  Unfortunately, neither really got the chance to do much.  So, I’ll have to experiment with them some more.

Here’s the list I’ll be running next week:

Skaven – 2,500 points

Warlord (General) – Enchanted Shield, Talisman of Protection, Warlock-Augmented Weapon

Chieftain (BSB) –  Shield, Storm Banner
Warlock Engineer – Lvl 2, Doomrocket, Warp-Energy Condenser
Warlock Engineer – Lvl 2, Dispel Scroll

Clanrats x29 – Full Command, Shields
– Poisoned Wind Mortar
Clanrats x29 – Full Command, Shields
– Doom Flayer
Skavenslaves x30 – Champion, Musician, Shields
Skavenslaves x29 – Champion, Musician, Shields
Stormvermin x30 – Full Command, Banner of the Under-Empire
– Poisoned Wind Mortar

Gutter Runners x6 – Slings, Poisoned Attacks
Rat Ogres x6 – Master-Bred, Packmaster x3
Rat Ogres x6 – Master-Bred, Packmaster x3

Plagueclaw Catapult
Warp Lightning Cannon

So, with a few games under my belt:

Dumping the sixth big block of troops worked really well for me: I’ve had problems getting in my own way with so many blocks.  I’m continuing to spend those points on war machines, in the name of science.

I’m really happy with the Warlord’s kit.  He’s hard to kill, with a 3+/4+ and kills hard enough with 5 S5 Attacks.  Ditto with the BSB.  Stormbanner’s far too key to Skaven survivability, and I can’t think of a better banner for him to take.  The Engineers have done well by me, though I need to learn to hold  on to the Doomrocket a little longer: if I wait a turn or two, I won’t have to shoot as far, won’t have to roll as many dice, and will be more accurate.

The Mortars have done okay by me so far.  The Doom Flayer hasn’t really had the chance to shine, though.  It should get a respectable number of wounds, though, which will offset the lack of killiness of the clanrats.

I’ve been incredibly pleased with the blocks of 30 Slaves.  At 20 Slaves, I felt that the unit wasn’t worth taking at any cost.  At 30, things are very different.  They will be Steadfast.  When they blow up, they will cause a respectable number of wounds.  I hated them at 20.  I like them, a lot, at 30.  Now I’m going to try them out with a Champion: he won’t make a difference in terms of CR, but he’ll keep more bodies in the unit, which will help with the Steadfast/Cornered Rats.  I might even drop the Musician; it’s not like I flee with these guys any more: they’re better at controlling enemy units holding them in place than drawing them into hard-to-fail charges.

Clanrats are clanrats.  They don’t really kill much of anything.  The Parry save has made them a little more survivable, I’ve found.  They don’t win combat any more… Static 5 CR is now Static 4 CR and that’s worth precious little now, but they don’t go anywhere.  Steadfast + Strength In Numbers means they just grind away at the enemy (which is effective, though not especially dramatic) or they hold them long enough to get the Stormvermin or Rat Ogres into the flank.

One them I have learned, though, is that if Slaves are in the front, I do not want to flank.  They give up so many wounds that it just means whatever I’m flanking with is going to lose combat, too.

I’ve replaced them with Gutter Runners, which will be more dangerous (even at half the model count) with with a higher WS/BS/I, and Poison.  Plus they should be more effective at countering war machines with the improved Scout rules and Sneaky Infiltrators.

I’ve dropped the Night Runners.  They really haven’t impressed me at all.  The only time they’ve really shone is when 10 of them held a building against a bunch of Ogres: the Building rules had them throwing out 20 attacks, which looked kind of nasty.  Every other time, they’ve done little more than ineffectually plink some slings against models.

I love the Rat Ogre units more and more every time I run them.  The Master-Bred goes before most things, and the Rat Ogres go before a lot of things.  21 S5 attacks by Initiative 4 really adds a lot of punch that the Skaven need help with.  The Packmasters and Stomp attacks don’t hurt, either.  Easily my favorite unit, post-8th.