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Advice for Biel-Tan vs. Imperial Guard

 Post subject: Advice for Biel-Tan vs. Imperial Guard
PostPosted: Wed Sep 04, 2019 6:35 pm 
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Hi everyone,

Very new to EA and looking for some tips and strategies against an Imperial Guard player at my local club. Trying to improve my game overall by spending more time thinking about army lists and strategies (and watching them go out of the window from move 1!).

My opponents guard army usually has these features (common to lots of guard armies I guess):

* Lots of sentinels used as a scout screen pushed up aggressively.
* one or two huge leman russ formations with extra bombards or AA.
* one mech inf. formation and one on foot. The non-mech formation usually parks up on blitz on overwatch in cover and is a nightmare to remove.

Army list below. Thoughts on army list (proxies are fine when we play so have scope for playing around with list) and strategies for dealing with guard as Eldar? Thinking at the moment

*Guardians sit on my blitz
* falcons, bombers, void spinners all focus on his huge tank formations (and maybe AA if seperate unit) then I try and assault turn two with either aspect warriors in the Vampire or Shining Spears (bringing windriders in to the mix as well).
* Swooping hawks to deal with his blitz or something isolated. Teleporting in.
* Once tank formations dealt with use my disrupt weapons (arty and bombers) on his large infantry units hiding in cover to try and soften for any painful assaults I might need to make.

Thanks for any advice you can give, if anyone is near Manchester and wants to play sometime let me know!

Incompertus, 2995 POINTS
Biel-Tan Craftworld (Biel-Tan Craftworld (v4.2))
==================================================

GUARDIAN WARHOST [200]
Farseer, 7 Guardians, 3 Support Weapon Platforms

WRAITHGATE [50]

AVATAR [0]

ASPECT WARRIOR WARHOST [325]
4 Striking Scorpion, 4 Fire Dragon, Exarch

ASPECT WARRIOR WARHOST [375]
8 Shining Spear, Autarch

WINDRIDER TROUPE [200]
5 Jetbikes, Vyper

WAR WALKER TROUPE [150]
4 War Walker

SWORDS OF VAUL TROUPE [330]
3 Falcon, 2 Fire Prism, Fire Storm

VAMPIRE RAIDER [200]

PHOENIX BOMBERS [325]
3 Phoenix Bombers

VOID SPINNER [275]
Void Spinner

ASPECT WARRIOR WARHOST [300]
8 Swooping Hawk

SWORDS OF VAUL TROUPE [265]
4 Falcon, Fire Prism


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 Post subject: Re: Advice for Biel-Tan vs. Imperial Guard
PostPosted: Wed Sep 04, 2019 7:03 pm 
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Against Guard with big formations you're hopefully up 2-3 in activations at the start of the game. So long as your AA is good and you're spread out enough that artillery won't hurt that bad, I'd let them go first if you had the choice on turn 1. That way you can stall on the Russes, hopefully getting them to activate when there's no decent targets. Then move up and keep laying the BMs. Use your Falcons/Walkers to break the Sentinels before they activate turn 1 if you can, otherwise hit his anti-tank units (Russes). Hide behind terrain and pop up if you can.

If your Scorps/Dragons are in the Vampire, hold them to the end of the turn and try to bring them down where they can engage the BTS. Suppress his AA with your Falcons, and put them within 30cm of where you want to land the Vampire so you get AA shots on CAP. Use the Vamp to barge 2 Russes, base another 4 if you can with the Scorps. Now he's down to 6@6+ and whatever is left for FF, and you've got many dice back which include MWs. With outnumbering, BMs and the Exarch you're looking at going in at at least +3.

Engage with the Spears if you can turn 1, otherwise double them to an engagement position late in turn 1. Teleport the Hawks turn 2 into a good support and/or crossfire position. Don't engage with them if you can avoid it. If you went second turn 1, you'll win ties on turn 2, giving you the change to set up another 2-3 assaults on the key formations at the start of turn 2.

Always use your consolidations move to get into cover and/or support positions. And if you ever summon an avatar make sure he runs out of LoS of all your formations when he engages.

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 Post subject: Re: Advice for Biel-Tan vs. Imperial Guard
PostPosted: Wed Sep 04, 2019 9:08 pm 
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Dave wrote:
And if you ever summon an avatar make sure he runs out of LoS of all your formations when he engages.


Lol

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 Post subject: Re: Advice for Biel-Tan vs. Imperial Guard
PostPosted: Wed Sep 04, 2019 10:23 pm 
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Activations, activations, activations. Turn 1 will probably be mostly stalling, hit-n-run popups and staying out of sight. Don't be too tempted to over extend falcons to get some shots off on a double leaving them open to retaliation - even a BM is useful against guard - he will fail some activations. (eldar are vulnerable to this too incidentally, all the more reason to hide). Failing makes him take the tough choice of using the reroll or saving it in case the tanks fail. Sentinels shouldnt worry you, they cant do much, are fragile and this gives you forward targets to break to reduce his activation count (as Dave says try to do it before they activate, he will end up having to activate something important that can't see anything, or waste them on 100 point scouts). Plus you can take rangers (where are your rangers?) which are just as cheap and more durable can take cover and not vulnerable to AT). So I would concentrate on the smaller things first rather than piling in on the tanks straight away. Bear in mind how expensive those tanks are and what they'd have to kill to earn their points back. Terrain can make them less effective than it might appear.

It can be good to get used to counting remaining activations on both sides and working out if you have enough of an advantage to move unopposed at the end of the turn. You will need this at some point as it will require a combination of formations to eventually take down the BTS - you want to stack as many modifiers on the assault resolution so that more die, hence it must be prepped with BMs and preferably a couple of casualties - it takes 4 hits on average to kill a russ, but each kill in assault can kill another in resolution, so combining that with lance and macro hits in assault can have a multiplying effect that shooting just cannot achieve. Likewise, once broken, BMs will decimate them much more efficiently than regular shooting - good thing you've got disrupt that can hit anywhere on the board then.

If you're worried about artillery (especially if he uses manticores instead of bombards, which cannot reach your deployment zone) then break them with the void spinner. Artillery can really wreck your day.

Against guard it is more achievable than many other armies to set up a rolling assault for turn 2 or 3 (assault, consolidate, retain, assault, consolidate, retain, assault). If you pull it off you'll feel like a gaming god ;) If you lose initiative then you're toast. Most opponents won't allow it to happen but it can be fun trying!

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 Post subject: Re: Advice for Biel-Tan vs. Imperial Guard
PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2019 1:29 am 
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gunslinger007 wrote:
Lol


It's a legimate strategy!

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 Post subject: Re: Advice for Biel-Tan vs. Imperial Guard
PostPosted: Thu Sep 05, 2019 8:49 am 
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Something that can be particularly helpful against lower activation count armies is working hard on turn one to reduce your opponents' activation count by stripping fragile formations. Artillery and aircraft are particularly good for this, but engagements might work against forward garrisons if they're close enough. You mention that your opponent runs lots of screening sentinels: as a 6+ armoured LV, you only need to kill two in a shooting attack to break the unit (or hit two with Disrupt artillery and kill one). If you can force your opponent to go first and use your initial activations to kill off unactivated Sentinel formations using your Swords, artillery, and aircraft while using cover to avoid retaliation from the Russes, then there's every chance that you can end turn one with unopposed marches to line up for a turn 2 assault (even better if you can find yourself within 30cm of the light units you just broke so they need 5+ to rally).

Being able to out-activate your opponent is a massive advantage in Epic, and it can often be a compounding one: if out-activating your opponent allows you to March your assault units into position at the end of turn 1, you'll be in a good position to open Turn 2 by engaging and hopefullly breaking at least two units before they have a chance to respond. Keep a particular eye out for intermingled units: it won't happen often if your opponent knows what they're doing, but it's a great feeling when you get to break that Infantry Company sitting on the blitz by assaulting and annihilating the three basilisks parked a little too close to them.


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 Post subject: Re: Advice for Biel-Tan vs. Imperial Guard
PostPosted: Fri Sep 06, 2019 3:36 pm 
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Thanks for all the comments, incredibly helpful! I'm not sure Eldar are the best learning army for EA so this is all good stuff. Let's see what I can do when we get to the table. I'll try and get an AAR together.


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 Post subject: Re: Advice for Biel-Tan vs. Imperial Guard
PostPosted: Thu Sep 12, 2019 3:07 pm 
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yeah Eldar rank only above Marines (IMHO) as not-beginner armies and even then, some of their advanced tactics such as the triple retain are some of the hardest to master. best of luck and I look forward to hearing how it works for you

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 Post subject: Re: Advice for Biel-Tan vs. Imperial Guard
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 4:50 pm 
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Feedback Time!

It was a tough game and I lost in the end but my opponent admitted at the end he felt on the back foot for most of the game. My decision making is getting much better. Rode my luck with some assaults which although prepped well only included the aspect warrior units alone (shining spears against an infantry block in forests, and an air drop against the Leman Russ formation). I broke the Leman Russ BTS formation but couldn't quite finish it off and just didn't have enough in the tank to take enough objectives. Let down by rubbish swooping hawks who teleported into a lot of hostile fire. Still, almost did enough to win and will keep plugging away. Felt a big improvement, thinking in terms of activation's really helped a lot. Forgot to use the Vampire to get into b2b with two tanks but still won the engagements there.

I'm not sure if it's just how terrain works in our club but guard units sitting on objectives are very tough to annhilate once on overwatch. Void Spinner did a lot of damage to one unit but other in the industrial area was basically untouchable.

Thanks for all the comments, really felt they helped a lot. Slowly getting better. We finished in 3 hours as well, now I have something of a strategy things are looking better. Maybe see you all at a tournament at some point!


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 Post subject: Re: Advice for Biel-Tan vs. Imperial Guard
PostPosted: Thu Sep 19, 2019 4:54 pm 
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Feedback Time!

It was a tough game and I lost in the end but my opponent admitted at the end he felt on the back foot for most of the game. My decision making is getting much better. Rode my luck with some assaults which although prepped well only included the aspect warrior units alone (shining spears against an infantry block in forests, and an air drop against the Leman Russ formation). I broke the Leman Russ BTS formation but couldn't quite finish it off and just didn't have enough in the tank to take enough objectives. Let down by rubbish swooping hawks who teleported into a lot of hostile fire. Still, almost did enough to win and will keep plugging away. Felt a big improvement, thinking in terms of activation's really helped a lot. Forgot to use the Vampire to get into b2b with two tanks but still won the engagements there.

I'm not sure if it's just how terrain works in our club but guard units sitting on objectives are very tough to annhilate once on overwatch. Void Spinner did a lot of damage to one unit but other in the industrial area was basically untouchable.

Thanks for all the comments, really felt they helped a lot. Slowly getting better. We finished in 3 hours as well, now I have something of a strategy things are looking better. Maybe see you all at a tournament at some point!


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 Post subject: Re: Advice for Biel-Tan vs. Imperial Guard
PostPosted: Fri Sep 20, 2019 12:47 am 
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Nice one, glad you are happy with your progress. What has happened to your poor vampire, he's had his tail bitten off?

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