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MSU / MSE - some observations and game experiences 
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The Aspect of Murder
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sugacapra wrote:
GrogsontPowwabomba : we think the same things many time when MSU come to talk :-))

does your shrine is near italy ? (so maybe one day we can our shake hands and cross our blades?)

;-)


Haha, I am actually in the USA in New York City and Philadelphia (depending on what work has me doing).

I've been to Florence once, and it was beautiful (as it seems all of Italy is).
So I don't see us meeting anytime soon, but I offer you a virtual handshake and blade crossing. 8)

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Mon Jun 30, 2003 4:31 pm
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Morathi's Favoured
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Hey Grog, you've been to Florence ( Firenze ) too! It is my favourite city in the whole world. I love it! Used to go there very often about 15 years ago ( jeez am I that old :evil: !lol! ).

Sugar you have a very good grasp on this whole MSU thing. My hat off to you man.

On stupidity and leadership, I find that as my COK units are now smaller, none existant or 2 units stupidity is not so critical as the main punch in my lists now comes from characters or infantry. Sort of redundant cure for stupidity. I can really see how Gav viewed the whole issue now when he gave us 2 for 1 chariots. " a very cunning plan M'Lord" !lol!

Pleased you all liked my article anyway. Got a few other points to add later ( tea first - got a hungry 13 year old to feed :? )


Mon Jun 30, 2003 4:54 pm
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Slave (off the Altar)
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Thanks for the advice Grog. I haven't tried the Harpies. How many do you usually use in a unit?

Durban

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Mon Jun 30, 2003 5:07 pm
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Dark Alliance wrote:
Hey Grog, you've been to Florence ( Firenze ) too! It is my favourite city in the whole world. I love it! Used to go there very often about 15 years ago ( jeez am I that old :evil: !lol! ).

Sugar you have a very good grasp on this whole MSU thing. My hat off to you man.

On stupidity and leadership, I find that as my COK units are now smaller, none existant or 2 units stupidity is not so critical as the main punch in my lists now comes from characters or infantry. Sort of redundant cure for stupidity. I can really see how Gav viewed the whole issue now when he gave us 2 for 1 chariots. " a very cunning plan M'Lord" !lol!

Pleased you all liked my article anyway. Got a few other points to add later ( tea first - got a hungry 13 year old to feed :? )


Hi Dark, i play warhammer only by about 5 months , long time ago (i'm near 30..) i play very very long time and very hard other medievals 25mm and other scale games... but almost always i play with tactics similar to MSU (with varius success.. sometime i get my ass kicked really hard.. :-)) ).
On last august i know a guy (now a real good friend) and he have about 12000 points of chaos on his house.. (a real house of chaos LOL) and he paint very very well (some of his pieces were selled time by time on ebay at incredible prices) he play khorne almost all the time.. and at the end he lured me to warhammer (with my girlfriend that gift me the starting druchii army for xmas... a real nice gift :-)) ) i'd play high (pantsy) elves first time versus my friend, after some game (2 -3) i feel that they are not fitted for me.. too many magic power, too many all power , too good deed... ehm.. i see the druchii and fall in love :-))

so i'm not a warhammer experienced player... (i'm a newbie for warhammer) but i've played a lot other military... and really.. at the start i doesnt understand why goblin are so heavily ranked or why my friend deploy 25 chaos warriors... but i cant grasp how to beat him (the first game i make many frontal charge , often i was able to reach 2 frontal charge with unit on one of his own not understanding that the flank cannot be reached as in other game by "enveloping" :-)) )

this long (and annoying :-) ) sentences to say that you Dark Al. and Grog, and Leithel and really almost any other druchii that write here boost my think and tactics.. appear that without this site i have to play really a lot to understand things that i cleared reading post here... this is the best site for warhammer that i find scavengin' the web and from here we learn how to win (or maybe how to be competetive ... ) with druchii...

thanks for the "hat off" but i think that the merit stand on the site itself..

:-)


Mon Jun 30, 2003 5:07 pm
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Black Guard
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GrogsnotPowwabomba wrote:

Haha, I am actually in the USA in New York City and Philadelphia (depending on what work has me doing).

I've been to Florence once, and it was beautiful (as it seems all of Italy is).
So I don't see us meeting anytime soon, but I offer you a virtual handshake and blade crossing. 8)


maybe... the life is impredictable :-))
but if there is some virtual mode (in future) to play..

Also NY city have to be a wonderful town... (the Rome of 2000.. :-) )

if you came in italy let me know indeed"! :-)


Mon Jun 30, 2003 5:14 pm
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The Aspect of Murder
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Dark Alliance wrote:
Hey Grog, you've been to Florence ( Firenze ) too! It is my favourite city in the whole world. I love it! Used to go there very often about 15 years ago ( jeez am I that old :evil: !lol! ).


Yeah, it is definately one of my favorite cities I have ever been to. It ranks up there (for me) with most of my other favorite cities (London, NYC, Tokyo), but unlike them, it is much more relaxed.

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Mon Jun 30, 2003 7:25 pm
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how do u think ill do using the msu/mse against chaos

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Mon Jun 30, 2003 8:17 pm
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.....need....GASP....more....WARRIORS....cough....

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Tue Jul 01, 2003 4:51 am
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A very interesting article DA, i like your tactics very much... i'm thinking of playing one myself... but just need to have a feel first....

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Tue Jul 01, 2003 6:09 am
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aenarion wrote:
how do u think ill do using the msu/mse against chaos


i usually play versus chaos (even mortal or daemonic) and you can fight him using msu.

simply you need to consider that:
- you have to face his fastest unit first or distract them with your harasser (DR are the best).

- if he have slow and heavy chaos warrior you can try to avoid them almost all the time,
"shade" them around , and if sustained by a DR group he can't march any more.. so with his
"fabolous" movement of 4" probably he'll reach the fight on turn 9-10 (LOL) when you are already on your bed sleeping :-)

- kill all his flying "harasser" (harpies,screamers) fast, they need to die fast cause you need to get to dominate the movement, and if you let them survive he can try to stop your maneuver.

- if he have frenzied units your darkrider need to give them ALWAYS a chargeable target,
always... and in the last turn if you are lucky (skilled?) you will be able to force them out of
table only letting him charge your bait that lay on borders... :-)) (scoring the unit points...)

- if he have tzeentch you need to close fast, (i fear the tzeentch lord on dragon with save of 3+ (or better..dont remember)) and if possible bring with you our "magical ring" that let him
miscast (RoH? right?) a noble on DP can make great use of it.

- try to think on a spellthirster hidra instead of CoB if he use heavy magic... your hydra can give a real boost on your dispell dice if you keep them on centre of your units..


- if you force him to fight where you want (and almost what i see the chaos players tend to be easy-chargers) you'll have their chosen knight fall apart hitted badly by your hammers unit

- remember that chaos have almost no missile fire at all... so .... go "heavy" on very light and deadly units.. (witches if he have lots of marauders and wardogs, execs if he have walking /riding tin-can )

- the black guards can do a real good jobs taking strong enemy where you want and let you flank charge him... (use a bait done from a infantry help on reduce losses on BG)

- RBT and DR versus frenzied units are at theyr best.. "flank bite" with DR and force him to "give you the flank" to the RBT... monoshot and see how many knight goes on..


Tue Jul 01, 2003 7:48 am
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The Aspect of Murder
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Sugacapra makes a very good point in this post. In most situations, your primary targets should be enemy fast cavalry, fliers, and any other fast elements they have. You want to completely dominate the movement phase with MSU, and eliminating these elements will give you almost free reign as to where you can go.

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Tue Jul 01, 2003 1:58 pm
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The Aspect of Murder
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Durban Poison wrote:
Thanks for the advice Grog. I haven't tried the Harpies. How many do you usually use in a unit?

Durban


I usually use them in a unit of 5 or 6. This is all you really need, it keeps their cost down, and I only have 6 models... :oops:

But seriously, I think you rarely need more than 6 Harpies anyway.

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Tue Jul 01, 2003 2:00 pm
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sugacapra wrote:
aenarion wrote:
how do u think ill do using the msu/mse against chaos


i usually play versus chaos (even mortal or daemonic) and you can fight him using msu.

simply you need to consider that:
- you have to face his fastest unit first or distract them with your harasser (DR are the best).

Absolutely the first part of the tactical plan to dominate the movement phase. Nothing to add here.

- if he have slow and heavy chaos warrior you can try to avoid them almost all the time,
"shade" them around , and if sustained by a DR group he can't march any more.. so with his
"fabolous" movement of 4" probably he'll reach the fight on turn 9-10 (LOL) when you are already on your bed sleeping :-)

lol :lol: :lol: I love this line!

- kill all his flying "harasser" (harpies,screamers) fast, they need to die fast cause you need to get to dominate the movement, and if you let them survive he can try to stop your maneuver.

This is very important as Screamers can make a mess of your back line and remember the Furies cause fear too. Not good for war machine crews to deal with.

- if he have frenzied units your darkrider need to give them ALWAYS a chargeable target,
always... and in the last turn if you are lucky (skilled?) you will be able to force them out of
table only letting him charge your bait that lay on borders... :-)) (scoring the unit points...)

Agreed. Nothing to add.

- if he have tzeentch you need to close fast, (i fear the tzeentch lord on dragon with save of 3+ (or better..dont remember)) and if possible bring with you our "magical ring" that let him
miscast (RoH? right?) a noble on DP can make great use of it.

This is an absolutely brilliant idea. I never consider using this item at all, but I'm not so sure now. Hmmmm.....


- try to think on a spellthirster hidra instead of CoB if he use heavy magic... your hydra can give a real boost on your dispell dice if you keep them on centre of your units..


- if you force him to fight where you want (and almost what i see the chaos players tend to be easy-chargers) you'll have their chosen knight fall apart hitted badly by your hammers unit

- remember that chaos have almost no missile fire at all... so .... go "heavy" on very light and deadly units.. (witches if he have lots of marauders and wardogs, execs if he have walking /riding tin-can )

- the black guards can do a real good jobs taking strong enemy where you want and let you flank charge him... (use a bait done from a infantry help on reduce losses on BG)

- RBT and DR versus frenzied units are at theyr best.. "flank bite" with DR and force him to "give you the flank" to the RBT... monoshot and see how many knight goes on..


@ Sugacapra : this is a really good summary of how to use MSU/MSE to deal with Chaos. Well done. Even gave me a new idea to think about with the Ring of Hotek!


Tue Jul 01, 2003 4:59 pm
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Dark Alliance wrote:
sugacapra wrote:
aenarion wrote:
how do u think ill do using the msu/mse against chaos


i usually play versus chaos (even mortal or daemonic) and you can fight him using msu.

[...]

@ Sugacapra : this is a really good summary of how to use MSU/MSE to deal with Chaos. Well done. Even gave me a new idea to think about with the Ring of Hotek!


nice to hear it, also as i said elsewhere chaos is my usual opponent... probably we can try to wrote a DOC filled with all the think we had said so we can reorganize all the ideas we put on it..
tomorrow i'll try to reorganize what we had said (there are 4 thread of an awesome lenght) so it will become more readable to all.. or not? :-)

p.s. the ring of hotek used with surprise can make you laught in face of tzeentch (i close combat on rear a unit of chaos warrior escorting the lvl4 mage... i tie and stay there and he have no chance to cast without the risk.. ehehe he cast and miscast.. LOL)


Tue Jul 01, 2003 5:07 pm
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Morathi's Favoured
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Yes, a good enhancement would be a Noble with dark steed ha, sdc, shield and lance carrying the ring and leading a unit of 5 DRs. An excellent flanking unit but tough enough to get close to the Wizard too.

Or have one on foot and use Steed of Shadow to fly him close enough to the Tzeentch wizard to affect him.


Tue Jul 01, 2003 5:12 pm
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An alternative to a Noble on Dark Steed/Pegasus is the new Beastmaster on Dark Pegasus. Beastmaster with Lance, Light Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Dark Pegasus and the Ring Of Hotek only costs 127 points. He ignores all terrain and so can hide in woods to get close to enemy Wizards.


Tue Jul 01, 2003 6:29 pm
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Well, i hate to ruin the party but ring of hotek is useless against characters outside units as he can walk outside its huge 6" range even if he´s a dwarf :P Don´t even try to use it against a dragon with flying...

Using it against characters inside infanteryunits work much better as 5" is the fastest movement possible with footsluggers, and thats before any wheeling or turning... he probably still can avoid it by moving the wizard to the other side of the unit (that doesnt require any movement, right?)

I used an Assassin with the ring and deployed him as a scout against lizardmen, instantly getting within 6" of the slann and thus forcing him to either leave his 300 pts saurus guard or face the consequenses :| Thats when he told me it was 4:th generation and ignored miscasts :\ Spell still failed tho


Tue Jul 01, 2003 6:54 pm
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The Aspect of Murder
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Yes, but you are assuming your opponent knows that you have the ring. If they don't know you have it, they are in for a big surprise. :)

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Tue Jul 01, 2003 7:13 pm
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GrogsnotPowwabomba wrote:
Yes, but you are assuming your opponent knows that you have the ring. If they don't know you have it, they are in for a big surprise. :)


Yes and against magic heavy armies I can see it's benefits as some of the enemies casters will be in units.

I am thinking seriously of using it after playing a campaign game against an opponent who is playing Necrarch, he's got 3 wizards and seems like he's going to be bringing them to every game. That will be a nice suprise and a pain in his butt. :)

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Tue Jul 01, 2003 8:05 pm
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Morathi's Favoured
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Yeah, the ring will come as a surprise the first time you use it. And you will only announce it's presence if the enemy mage rolls a double. If he doesn't in that turn they you keep stum. ;)

For 20 ( ? ) points, all it needs to do is stop 1 spell and chances are it will earn it's keep. After that, once your opponent knows it is there he will have something else for his wizard to worry about. Possibly deciding to move him away from your all important units and putting some spells out of range.

Sugacapra has pointed out a really good idea there and demonstrated yet further the tactical flexibility of the DEs and the MSU idea equally.


Tue Jul 01, 2003 8:16 pm
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langmann wrote:
I am thinking seriously of using it after playing a campaign game against an opponent who is playing Necrarch, he's got 3 wizards and seems like he's going to be bringing them to every game. That will be a nice suprise and a pain in his butt. :)


I can also see its uses against all the kids with their Heavens Lore Sniper Wizards.

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Tue Jul 01, 2003 8:17 pm
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GrogsnotPowwabomba wrote:
langmann wrote:
I am thinking seriously of using it after playing a campaign game against an opponent who is playing Necrarch, he's got 3 wizards and seems like he's going to be bringing them to every game. That will be a nice suprise and a pain in his butt. :)


I can also see its uses against all the kids with their Heavens Lore Sniper Wizards.


Oh yeah baby :D Give it to a scouting Assassin for example, as well as the Dark Pegasus riders.


Tue Jul 01, 2003 8:18 pm
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More about deployment.....

I mentioned before about the importance of deployment with MSU / MSE and I thought I would get into it a little bit more now.

I pointed out that deployment and movement are unavoidably linked and vitally important to the success ( or failure ) of this principle. When I construct my army lists I look very carefully at how each unit is going to work in conjunction with another and I generally have groups of 3. Each of which can interact with other groups if necessary.

Typically I would have 2 units of 5 DRs with rxbs running up one flank ahead of a small unit of COKs or a Manticore. In the centre I would deploy 10 rxbmen with shields in a single line backed up by a unit of Witch Elves and 10 Spears and on the other flank a line or unit of 10 spears backed by executioners and more rxbmen.

The fast flank there to distract, cause mayhem behind his lines and try to turn his units exposing juicy flanks. The centre and second flank start to advance and mop up the pieces.

I prefer to use rxbmen as my frontline units due to their missile capability and their very respectable 4+ save in combat. I find that opponents feel they really need to take these out quickly and so this is where my first trap is laid angling their position in such a way as to send the enemy overun across my line exposing their flank. In pretty much every game I field a unit of 10 rxbmen centrefield for they have a commanding role throughout the whole game then.

Unless I am fielding a Manticore, my general would normally reside within the Executioners and would be a Noble rather than a Highborn. The Exe's are deployed to theflank centre to offer what he can to the needs for leadership but I do play the odds with Ld tests, figuring that with 8 & 9 I won't fail too many.

This deployment would then typically spread across a wide part of the available deployment zone with Sorceresses positioned appropriate to their level and their intended use in any given list. Remember my earlier comments about leaving enough room for the movement requirements of each unit.

Enhancements or 'bolt-ons'.......

Since these discussions about MSU / MSE started a number of people have come up with some additional ideas / tactics / concepts which really enhance this strategy and I thought I would list the ones I would most likely use myself.

1. The Cauldron of Blood. Takes up a rare slot which would normally be contested by more rbts or a hydra ( or even Black Guard now under the Revision ) but I feel it is essential if your list is predominantly infantry based. You will find you enemy coming to you and once within it's range the effects of Red Fury are devastating to an enemy unit which has been hit by a multi unit charge!

2. The Ring of Hotek. Finally a really good use for it. Magic is potentially lethal to the small MSU units so a Beastmaster or Noble on a Dark Steed or a Dark Pegasus is really going to catch out an enemy mage with this item. The odds being in your favour with surprise and the one spell it miscasts should be the one to allow your game winning charge! Chances are, especially if the mage is in a unit, he will ignore the lonely DE character in favour of casting at a unit so he should prove effecive.

3. Lord / Manticore. Being an aspect of Khaine this beast really fits the list fluff wise if you are theming around Khaine as I am. The enormous flexibility of this combination, while pricey, will really pay dividends in this list. With plenty of cheap bait units around drawing charges there should be ample opportunities for flank charges with this monster.

4. Lore of Shadows. With it's movement enhancing spells is a natural for this tactic. Imagine your opponents face when he thinks you have finished setting up those obvious traps - "which he is not going to fall for!" and all of a sudden you charge him from somewhere else!

5. Dark Rider units with Standards. I have a new found healthy respect for standards in these units now as my spears are naked except for shields. The DR flank charge usually being the deciding factor which breaks the enemy.

6. The Deathmask. Another aspect of Khaine, Given to a Noble on foot sitting in an Infantry unit adds a nasty surprise to an enemy with low leadership. Imagine a unit of 40 Gobbos running from your 10 Spearmen because they failed a terror test! This item obviously has merit when given to the Dark Pegasus riders too.

7. Harpies. Further aspects of khaine ( reincarnated WEs? ). Invaluable again for doing what they normally do but due to their 360degree vision, invaluable too for adding the surprise flank or rear charge.

Once again thanx for reading and I hope you find something of use. :D


Tue Jul 01, 2003 9:04 pm
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Morathi's Favoured
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/\\// wrote:
An alternative to a Noble on Dark Steed/Pegasus is the new Beastmaster on Dark Pegasus. Beastmaster with Lance, Light Armour, Sea Dragon Cloak, Dark Pegasus and the Ring Of Hotek only costs 127 points. He ignores all terrain and so can hide in woods to get close to enemy Wizards.


What do you mean by 'ignores all terrain'? If he is on a flyer he will have to land at the side of a wood in one turn, and walk into it in the next.


Wed Jul 02, 2003 8:28 am
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Having read this most interesting discussion and looking at my comments early on I set out last night to attempt to compare the effectiveness of an MSU/MSE list vs a more conventional DE army list.

My assumption before the game was that it would probably end up in one of two results a draw or a massacre to the player who went first. I had little expectation of any thing else from my past experience of same race opponent games.

First up the army lists;

MSU tactical style army;

Noble on peagasus lance ha sdc enchanted shield, seal of ghrond
Sorceress l2 lifetaker and tome of furion
sorceress l2 dispell scroll and dark star cloak

10 warriors champion and standard
10 corsairs champion
10 warriors rxb shield
5 DR rxb
5 DR rxb
2 charriots
7 shades
5 harpies
2 RBT's
1 hydra


Possibly not truely MSU but based on its principles the corsairs provided a bait unit, I had a screen with the rxb warriors for the spear warriors charriot and hydra the hammer and anvil. The DR protected the flanks.

More conventional army using traditional DE tactics - my opponeent Trevor was under stictest instructions to forget ever hearing about MSU coupled with telling him I was going to play with my Chaos Khorne army! :lol:

Highborn dark steed ha,sdc, enchanted shield Blade of ruin
Noble BSB Coldone SDC, HA, Hydra banner
Sorceress L2 DSC
Sorceress L2 2x dispell scrolls

2 x 10 rxb warriors
20 warriors c/s/m
5 DR
5 harpies
7 COK c/m
2 charriots rxbs
2 RBT's

The table top was set up as a mirrior with a hill partly in each deployment zone and a wall towards the middle of the table on both sides.

Deployment
second line (behind COK's) spears harpies
front line DR RBT Chariot COK Chariot rxb rxb

front line harpies corsairs rxb RBT's
second line pegasus DR spears (angled to centre) chariot hydra chariot
Scouts behind a wall 10" infront of the rxb unit

Conventional list went first

The game progressed pretty much as expected with the COK rampaging through the centre of the table unfortunately not through my bait unit but through my rxb warriors over running into the hydra. I duely counter charged with a charriot and the spear armed warriors. The COK's duely lost and fled in a fit of bad dice despite 3 over running units I failed to catch them. I was then forced to move my RBT's to avoid the harpies I couldn't shoot due to having got chillwinded!

The large spearmen were dispatched by a combined charge from the warriors (flank) and a DR (front) unit whilst the pegasus eventually disposed of the RBT's in turn 5. Meanwhile both my charriots got charged and the hydra killed without inflicting further damage.

The shades fought out a protracted fire fight from behind the wall with the rxb warriors eventually 1 unit of them broke and the shades were killed. The second unit fell victim to a fortuitous flank charge from my small warrior unit and promptly fled with my warriors over running back into my half of the table.

The game ended with me having the noble, corsairs and a DRunit in my opponents half of the table with my warriors in my own. My opponent had the remains of his COK and 2 charriots in one quarter along with his highborn and 2 sorceresses.

The more conventional army won by 350 pts a minor victory.

At the end I felt the game went pretty much as I'd expected with the COK unit proving very powerful but fragile whilst the plethora of units I had coupled with the attempt I made at using them in the MSU style saved me loosing more heavily as it enabled me to occupy 3 of the 4 table quarters at the end of the game. Without these and a bonus 200 pts for the standards I captured I would have lost by 850pts.

Looking at the list I only had 2 more units than the traditional style list but these proved decisive in staving off a worse defeat as if I had played the list in a more traditional style then I would probably have lost the lot and certainly would have done so in the past.

MSU provided me some creative solutions to common problems such as how to I kill heavy cavalry and negate charriots without resort to big expensive formations or relying on my magic which proved sigularly useless all game (I failed to dispell any spells at all! then got both my sorceresses chillwinded to death). The pegasus proved very handy if not as powerful as a manticore it was a lot cheaper and proved more than adequate for killing off war machines. The hydra made for a marginally more reliable hammer than the more usual small COK unit as I would have been relying on Ld8 to avoid stupidity and works out at a similar points cost even if it is a little less effective in hth. The terror is handy and it soaks up missile fire which means all your fragile small units have more time to get into position which is nice.

Overall I liked the feel of the MSU army and will try out a few more variants on it over the coming weeks but at the end of the day I suspect I will end up with more of a hybrid style army not disimilar to this one which utilises MSU infantry tactics with more traditional druchii DR shade tactics. With the final advent of the revision and the changes this will move to a more MSE/DR combo - now just to paint all those witch elves!

K

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Life is short, death last for ever like a journey on British public transport!


Wed Jul 02, 2003 9:08 am
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