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Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar

 Post subject: Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar
PostPosted: Fri Nov 18, 2011 11:51 pm 
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Disclaimer: This is experience from 3 games with the Leviathan 3.0 list, 2 against Eldar. I'm going to play more, but my most regular opponent is taking a break for exams. I'm hoping this will be useful as a data point, but it's way too narrow for anything definitive. Maybe I'll get some pointers about how to play vs Eldar.

What I'm left with is a feeling that Eldar are nearly a hard counter to Tyranids: Part of it may be that I'm no good at playing CC hordes, but I can't quite see how Eldar are vulnerable to that at all. They're faster, they can block almost any CC with skimmers if they want, and if I try to line up multiple formations to threaten CC assaults they will use Farsight to break 3 of them, cripple most of those and maybe even wipe out one or two of the formations. Probably with formations that were under CC threat, leaving me one or no targets. I struggled with formations being extremely vulnerable to being attacked in FF - nothing with countercharge 10cm leaves them very vulnerable to clipping, which is made worse by the poor FF scores.

The exceptions are Carnifexes and titans. 4+ RA, Fearless troops could care less if they are assaulted, they won't lose many, if any, units, and they'll use the withdrawal move to move into a better position for next turn, counting on the 2+ rally. Devourer Carnifexes are even scary enough in FF to discourage almost anything from attacking them. And a formation of 6 and a Hive Tyrant is only 300 points.

I managed to keep the games against Eldar close with Carnifexes and titans. In the first game a carnifex swarm surrounded the wraithgate in some ruins, fighting off and almost wiping out a guardian host with wraithguard and killing the storm serpent. In the second game a Warlock Titan assaulted another Carnifex Swarm, using barging to drag them back, but only managed to kill one of them. They broke, but moved towards the blitz, rallied and killed the void spinner guarding it and claiming Blitz. The Eldar player then made big miscalculation and deliberatly left the warlock within CC range of the Dominatrix. A Harridan with 8 gargoyles moved into support, and the Dom charged with her two barbed hierodules and four hormagaunts. The warlock had lost one DC to the carnifexes, lost four more to the Dominatrix Swarm and lost the holo-field, leaving the harridan and gargoyles with a very easy task of finishing it off. I should probably have lost one or maybe both hierodules to the Warlocks attack (one in CC, one in FF), but he only managed one hit, that did one damage. This left us in a bit of a stalemate, tyranid formations who weren't dominatrixes or carnifexes got wiped out easily, but the Dom and the Fexes had secured BTS and Blitz. Given that it still took activations to remove the rest of the Nid army I should have managed to deny Take & Hold, but messed up in activation order and the game ended when the biotitans lost an assault against some Eldar Rangers (oh, the shame - 7 hits, but of the three rangers in range one made both his saves, the rangers and some bikes did two points of damage and I lost the rolloff). We should have played another turn, but time ran out and we had to call it (even forgot to count VPs - I think the Eldar were ahead something like 1400-1300).

Quick rule question: When you shoot at War Engines you choose to shoot at either War Engines or non-engines. Does this apply to CC too? We played that it did, but if it doesn't the Warlock would have been even more screwed - normal hits on the RA war engines, TK hits on the hormagaunts.

First game was 2000 points vs Eldar. Nid list:

Horde Swarm 1 - 2 Tyranid Warriors, 4 Termagants, 4 Hormagaunts
Horde Swarm 2 - 2 Tyranid Warriors, 4 Termagants, 4 Hormagaunts
Specialist Swarm 1 - Hive Tyrant (Swarmlord), 6 Carnifex
Specialist Swarm 2 - Hive Tyrant, 3 Devourer Carnifex
Specialist Swarm 3 - 2 Tyranid Warriors, 8 Biovores
Harridan Swarm - Harridan Prime, 8 Gargoyles
Genestealer Swarm - 6 Genestealers
Lictor Swarm - 6 Lictors

Played another game vs Space Marines (me playing Marines). Nids won easily, but I played like shit - a devastator formation tried holding the center alone, scouts broke some genestealers but got wiped out in return, the big tactical formation with land raiders spent the game attacking the carnifexes for no real effect. The terminators even managed to assault the small devourer carnifex swarm in CC and got wiped out for no loss.

Second list, 3000 points
Horde Swarm 1 - 4 Warriors, 8 Termagants, 8 Hormagaunts 425
Horde Swarm 2 - Dominatrix, 4 Hormagaunts, 2 Barbed Hierodule 700 (BTS)
Specialist Swarm - 2 Zoanthropes, 8 Biovores 250
Specialist Swarm - Hive Tyrant, 6 Devourer Carnifex
Trygon Prime 250
Harridan Prime (4 extra gargoyles) 325
Spore Mine Cloud 150
Spore Mine Cloud 150
Genestealers 150
Lictors 150
Lictors 150

Eldar 3000 points: http://traitor-legion.appspot.com/choos ... 1~503~32x5


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar
PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 12:26 am 
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Did the Spore Mine Clouds do something usefull ?
In my games versus Hojyn, Spore Mines were just a waste of points.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar
PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 12:31 am 
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Flogus wrote:
Did the Spore Mine Clouds do something usefull ?
In my games versus Hojyn, Spore Mines were just a waste of points.


The Eldar player didn't use aircraft, as he had a Warlock (and no models for them). I used them as a scout screen, but they got assaulted by rangers and guardians in the first activation as I had placed them very close to the middle of the table. 2 spore mines survived.

They did let my genestealers survive to break a Fire Prism formation and kill five on hackdowns ("aaaah genestealers!!!" "but we're in a skimmer? "I bet those Cads can jump, fleeee!!!")


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar
PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 12:35 am 
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FWIW it's worth I put a whooping w/ my eldar on zombo's leviathan 2.0 a few months ago. It was so easy it felt embarrassing especially as I hadn't even brought a tailored anti-nid list. Even the 4+RA stuff is not that scary as Eldar have lance weapons and can clip the hell out of the big beasts, for instance 8 warp spiders w/ exarchs coming out of a gate can break any of the 'phants or or dominatrix starting as they do up 3.

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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar
PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 1:39 pm 
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Eldar will always be a real challenge for 'nids, no matter what lists.

Personally I'd like the meiotic spores to have a 30cm range to represent a cloud of spores in the area, which would make them more useful.

Ulrik: What were your opinions on the army list construction? I'm a little concerned about the specialist swarm; maybe it should be a support swarm rather than core.

Also, how about the special rules?

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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar
PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 2:28 pm 
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zombocom wrote:
Ulrik: What were your opinions on the army list construction? I'm a little concerned about the specialist swarm; maybe it should be a support swarm rather than core.


Not sure about it. Looking at it, a lot of the specialist swarms can work better as horde swarms, as it's usually enough with one large cluster of the specialist unit. Add a small gaunt cluster and you gain some cheap units which can be swarmed back, and also the option of doubling up on synapses. Both of those are great options, but they do cost points. Compare these two:

2 Hive Tyrants, 6 Devourer Carnifex, 4 Termagants 475
1 Hive Tyrant, 6 Devourer Carnifex 300

The second one is vulnerable to lucky hits on the tyrant (barrage being the most likely I think), and has no option for swarming and fewer attacks in FF. However, it is significantly cheaper.

Personal opinion is that Specialist Swarms could move to Support, but then each Core Swarm should allow 2 Support Swarms.

Quote:
Also, how about the special rules?


Swarming works like a charm. Gaunts feel extremely expendable - not only do they not give blast markers, there's always more of them!

Hive Mind rally is powerful, but it also felt needed - my formations broke so very easily to Eldar assaults

Regeneration had very little effect. The Dominatrix did regen the single point of damage it took from the Warlock, but that was inconsequential.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar
PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 5:07 pm 
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My thinking behind allowing specialist swarms as core was largely to test out whether gaunts etc are worth taking. If we find people aren't taking them, despite them being the only swarmables, then they need looking at again.

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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar
PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 5:15 pm 
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I'll try to experiment a bit with adding gaunts to "specialist swarms" and see if it's worth the extra points.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar
PostPosted: Sat Nov 19, 2011 10:10 pm 
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I have to say that in the lists I've been guessing there are gaunts, but not to many, I still have to test them (looking forward to do it in the incoming week). In concept I've found them desirable for some things:

1) They're great rounding your points.
2) They give you a good expendable and recurrent screen to hide your blast markers for the big guys, so they at least keep moving or rallying.
3) They'd screen the fearless big guy's worrying wounds in assault, while maybe giving you the units you need for getting over the other formation number of units (or doubling...).

I'll tell you the results of my thoughts once I can put them to work.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 12:34 am 
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As promised, here are my thoughts. Gaunts in big guy units are great, even when they can't even fight (cheap hormagaunts against skimmer). I had 4 with the dominatrix and 4 in each of three units of 1 x tervigon + 2 x tyranofex (swarm units so).

The reasons:
- The tervigon spawns always at least 1d3, keeping the number.
- The most favorable unit in the table can usually spawn 2-3D3, keeping up with the number, even when most of them are out.
- They are overseen by the enemy, who prefers to shot at the big guys, who are really shooting at him, and when close combat arrives, you put them in front and they absorbe all the bad wounds.
- You can usually spawn enough to disregard most of the BMs, even if you're broken.
- They give the slow big guys (15cm) just the additional movement they need to engage properly the firefighters, and the number to apply the +2 for doubling the enemy in number, when the enemy are small units (less casualties).

The drawback:
- They're so cheap casualties that you easily lose combats with any BMed unit, but you're still fearless and won't take additional BMs, so no big deal...

Still skimmers are a living nightmare for the tyranids, moreover if they're fearless (I was playing against necrons). See the report I'll be adding to the leviathan thread in little, but I lost, even if at the start of turn 2 the necron player was thinking on conceding. The game has been quite intense and I've enjoyed every minute.


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 12:53 am 
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What was your list?


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 2:37 am 
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Check on the main leviathan_v3 topic.

I can give you some more numbers, though:
1xtervigon
2xtyranofex
8xtermagaunts

8 necrons assault a fresh unit for: 8xfirefight4+ & 3xfirefight3+ : 6 termagaunt casualties
You give back 14xfirefight5+: 2'3 casualties
- You might win the number of units (+1).
- Nobody broken (+0).
- Lose by four casualties (-3).
You're probably running, but won't suffer much more, so you retreat 30cm.
You recover (2+), and respawn 2d3 gaunts (4 back)... 4 gaunts, and you recover back to 4BMs (5+1 leader). Changed 2 gaunts by 2'3 necrons... not to bad.

If you manage to obtain firefight support, you got it.

When shooting at the gaunts, as you have them adjacent to an AV or WE (I used to), they're hit at -1.

In the meantime, you have 4 AT4+ hits on your turn, and can obtain good crossfires and good firefight supports, if you don't spill around to much (I still think that shooting carnifexes will most probably work better).


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 9:18 am 
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as his oposing player, i found that hormagaunts allowed me to win firefights (easily killed) but could never touch the big guys due to gaunts absorbing every wound, so next turn it would spawn and come back at full strength, it was discouraging how they played the attrition game, really as nyds are supossed to fight


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 Post subject: Re: Some thoughts on Leviathan 3.0 vs Eldar
PostPosted: Tue Nov 22, 2011 11:02 am 
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Interesting. I had looked at the Tervigon + Tyrannofex formation (looks like the most AT bang for the buck), but I hadn't thought of using gaunts with it.

A core of fearless nids with ablative gaunts does look like a very good way to play the list. Will try that out.


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