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How to use chariots? 
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Trainee Warrior

Joined: Tue May 03, 2011 7:10 pm
Posts: 29
Hi,

I have never used chariots but am in the process of modelling 2.

Just looking for some advice on using them. They seem very vulnerable as their power relies on them getting the charge. With them being so slow this theoretically seems difficult.

Any advice would be most welcome.

Cheers,

-MustangTC


Mon Jun 20, 2011 10:38 am
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Cold One Knight
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As it is, our chariots are about as tough as chariots come. T5 and 3+ AS is pretty good. It is true however that they function best on the charge.

They are not really slow (M7) but indeed they may not march, which in some cases can be considered slow. They are however very manouverable (pivot on the spot). furthermore they do have a large charge range (as cav) so they can threaten a lot.

They can function in a lot of ways.

- Protect the flanks. Move them up a bit from the flank and you can get into charge range of anything coming from the other side like skirmishers, fast cav, small knight units. Even bigger infantry units will not like a Cold one Chariot in its flank, since they will get hold up for a long time (standard inf (str3) will wound on a 6 and you still get your 3+ AS). with LD 9 and immune to psychology they do not need the generals LD on the flank either.

- Reactive charges. For those who like to play the shooting game, Cok are very excellent. Set them up to threaten the field for anything coming towards your gunline.

- Support your infantry. Cok are also very good for adding punch to your infantrybloks. March your spearmen up 10 inch, Cok on its side 7 inch, then together happily charge into the enemy to break them apart. Or move your spearmen up a little less and the Cok set up to threaten the enemies flank if they charge the spearmen.

Well, hope this hleps a little....Oh, one more reason to field them: chariots are cool!!

D...


Mon Jun 20, 2011 11:00 am
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Generalissimo
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A lot of their strength depends on who you are playing against.

Against low toughness elites (e.g. High Elves, Wood Elves), they are incredibly good. D6+1 impact hits at S5 is very powerful and can easily mess up a unit before combat even starts.

Against high toughness foes, or hordes, they are less good. D6+1 S5 hits against a unit of 40 goblins = not much really. Similarly, D6+1 S5 hits against a unit of 20 Chaos Warriors = not much damage.

Lord Damian Valar is basically right in his appraisal of their functions. A few caveats though:

- T5, 4 wounds and a 3+ armour save is great, but still vulnerable (especially to volley fire).
- Once locked in combat, their damage potential goes down considerably. If you get a 1 on that initial impact hits roll, you're then left with a couple of measly dark elves and cold ones attacking in combat each turn (losing hatred after the first turn too). Consequently they can get bogged down quite quickly.
- Their manoeuvrability is further hampered when encountering rough terrain.

That's, sadly, why you won't see any in most of my lists still.

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Tue Jun 21, 2011 11:22 am
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Malekith's Best Friend
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Chariots are still great units but they are a force-multiplier and not a combat unit. By that I mean a good General does not send a lone chariot into combat and expect it to win. A Chariot works in conjunction with other units to A) force a fear check and B) add in some kills. But I think what is so often overlooked is that they need to work with deep units in order to be effective. Here's an example; a 7x3 unit of Witch Elves can really dish out some pain in the combat phase. Enemies playesr fear this unit! But with only three ranks they rarely break an enemy's Steadfast bonus on the first turn. So if a player charges in the Witch Elves with Chariot support, it doesn't matter if the Chariot adds in another 11 kills - until Steadfast is broken on your opponent, a Chariot isn't effective. If a player wants to have Chariots in his army, then he needs an army with ranks. I think everyone is so focused on the Horde rule (because it is still shiny and new) that they forget a 5x7 block of Spearmen assisted by a Chariot will break a LOT of units.

Chariots are the coup de grace to a fight. They're the unit that tips the scales in a fight to break an enemy. knowing when or where to apply a chariot's force is a bit of an art but one that can turn a battle. As a side note, but relating to another thread being discussed on the boards, if I do not take a Cauldron of Blood, I often replace it with a pair of Chariots. "Sure. Go ahead and ram your Chaos Warriors into my Spearmen, Mr Chaos Player. I'll hold on Steadfast and next turn I'm going to slam those two chariots into your face for up to 22 wounds, and your big expensive unit is going to be dust!" It is a very scary threat!

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Tue Jun 21, 2011 1:21 pm
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Black Guard

Joined: Thu Jan 27, 2011 11:38 pm
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Location: Epsom, UK
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Put chariots in the side, especially if you're holding up the front of the unit with an anvil, no-one, not even Chaos like d6+1 S5 imact hits in the side.

Lone chariots can also be ok against small units of things like thunderers (though this can be risky as if you charge in the front they -will- stand and shoot.)


Tue Jun 21, 2011 2:42 pm
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Malekith's Best Friend
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My favorite thing about Cold One Chariots is the usefulness they have alongside an infantry unit. Send in your standard unit of Black Guard, Witch Elves or whatever, and then have the chariot also charge the same target and fight corner-to-corner. You get the full benefit of impact hits while still leaving room for your infantry to attack.

If and when you win the combat, the chariot pursues quickly with Swiftstride and can run down your opponent easier than infantry can, letting you reform with your infantry to fight someone else.

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Tue Jun 21, 2011 3:14 pm
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Generalissimo
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Quote:
"Sure. Go ahead and ram your Chaos Warriors into my Spearmen, Mr Chaos Player. I'll hold on Steadfast and next turn I'm going to slam those two chariots into your face for up to 22 wounds,


Wait, where are you getting the 22 wounds from?

You have 2xD6+1 S5 impact hits, plus 2x2 WS4 S5 dark elf attacks and 2x2WS3 S4 attacks from the cold ones.

That's an average of:
9xS5 impact hits (4.5 from each chariot). Versus T4 Chaos Warriors, you're wounding on 3s, so that's an average of 6 wounds. They have Chaos Armour as default, so they're saving on 6s: so an average of 5 unsaved wounds.

You get an average of 3 hits from the dark elf charioteers in combat (4 attacks, hitting on 4s against WS5 Chaos Warriors, re-rolling for hatred). They're T4, so you're wounding on 3s, so that's 2 wounds. They then save on 6s again, so just under 1.667 unsaved wounds.

You get an average of 2 hits from the cold ones (4 attacks, hitting on 4s against WS5 Chaos Warriors, no hatred). They're T4, so you're wounding on 4s. So that's 1 wound. They save on 5s and 6s, so you're looking at 0.667 wounds.

So, in total: 5+1.667+0.666 = 7.333 wounds on average. A far cry from 22 I'm afraid...

I assume you're calculating the 22 possible wounds by working out the maximum possible damage that could occur (so 7 kills from each impact roll (14 total), followed by 2 kills from each set of charioteers (4 total) and 2 kills by each cold one set (4 total)...14+4+4 = 22. But I do have to say, this is not an effective way to visualise potential damage at all. Otherwise that unit of 40 goblin spearmen become far more frightening than they actually are. They have the potential to do up to 40 wounds, but realistically they're not going to.

The reason I flag this up is because it feeds back into my original point. Yes, chariots sound very hard hitting and scary until you actually do the maths and then suddenly they become far less compelling.

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Tue Jun 21, 2011 3:43 pm
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Malekith's Best Friend

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In his defence, he did say "up to 22 wounds", which is a common marketing scheme ;)


Tue Jun 21, 2011 5:50 pm
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Slave (off the Altar)

Joined: Sun Jul 11, 2010 12:43 pm
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Post 
Red... wrote:
Quote:
"Sure. Go ahead and ram your Chaos Warriors into my Spearmen, Mr Chaos Player. I'll hold on Steadfast and next turn I'm going to slam those two chariots into your face for up to 22 wounds,


So, in total: 5+1.667+0.666 = 7.333 wounds on average. A far cry from 22 I'm afraid...

Yes, chariots sound very hard hitting and scary until you actually do the maths and then suddenly they become far less compelling.


Against that same unit of Chaos Warriors those 7.3 wounds on average means taking out 1.5 ranks and giving you a much better chance to break them.


Wed Jun 22, 2011 8:13 am
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Generalissimo
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Quote:
Against that same unit of Chaos Warriors those 7.3 wounds on average means taking out 1.5 ranks and giving you a much better chance to break them.


Any Chaos Player who's stacking their warriors in ranks of 5 in 8th edition deserves to lose. Most go with 7 or even 10 these days. But yes, 7.333 wounds is okay, I just think there are better options for doing this kind of damage (or greater) out there with less risk and effort (e.g. a unit of 6 cold one knights, a hydra). And 7.333 wounds is certainly not 22.

Oh, it's worth adding that if they're playing with Nurgle or Tzeentch warriors then the 7.3 will be even lower...

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Wed Jun 22, 2011 8:22 am
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Malekith's Best Friend
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While playing math-hammer is fun for everyone, the topic at hand is HOW to use chariots. And I described how I use them. If anyone out there has better suggestions, spit it out! I'm always ready to hear better ideas!

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Wed Jun 22, 2011 2:52 pm
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Black Guard

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I actually completely agree with you Phierlihy, it's why I always have 2 in my list.


Wed Jun 22, 2011 3:52 pm
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Malekith's Personal Guard

Joined: Sun Feb 14, 2010 12:13 am
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First off, I haven't used one yet - mine aren't done yet. :oops: However, I have given the issue some thought.

Historically speaking, Chariots were used two ways. First was as a highly mobile shooting platform (i.e. the Egyptian variant), second was as a 'hit and run' unit. The chariot would either nip in, drop off or pick up a hero (the Homeric version) or do a drive-by and use the scythe blades to wreck the front line of a formation (most everyone else). Secondary fucntion was usually anti-chariot. You didn't bother going after cavalry; you'd never catch them unless they wanted to be caught.

What the chariot did NOT do was charge in headlong and get stuck into a unit. This inevitably resulted in a dead chariot, something the charioteers were quite keen to avoid.

And with the invention of the stirrup, the chariot went obsolete because now a horseman was far superior in mobility and striking power. That's why the dark age and medieval armies didn't feature knights in shining chariots. :lol:

The problem with this in Warhammer is... those roles don't work. Except for the Tomb Kings, you can't form units big enough to be terribly useful shooting platforms. Sure, our double RXBs mean 4 shots per... but that's about it.

The close combat version fares even worse. There is no way to do a drive-by in WFB, short of breaking the unit on the charge which is hardly assured anymore. So, historical roles fail us when looking at how to use chariots in WFB.


So, how does one use this historical fair-haired stepchild in the game?

One could just take a lot of them. You can have 3 in the special slost, plus one for each (non-caster) character. At least that way you would have a significant amount of shooting to do. But it is quite expensive for that - 3 chariots costs more than two units of 8 Dark Riders, only gives 12 shots vs. the Dark Rider's 32, and is quite limited on speed and mobility vs. their Fast Cav compatriots. Not to mention that Dark Riders are core... ;)

Thus far, the best use I have come up with is as a companion to an infantry block. That way the infantry can depend on having a heavy-impact charge come in on their side when combat occurs. Just hold the chariot backand to one side a bit (no big deal with the non-marching chariot) and wait for the opportune moment.

I'll tell you more once I get some actual battle experience with them under my belt.


Wed Jun 22, 2011 5:05 pm
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Malekith's Personal Guard

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Tho I LIKE your idea of popping an unit on it after their melee phase (our Move) if it's close enough.

wait. if a master joins the unit and the unit hasn't moved yet... ooooh

technically TK use those Egyptian style hitters a LOT now with the 'Always BS 5' thing half of them have lol

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Fri Jun 24, 2011 1:39 am
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Its not always BS 5, it is BS 2 with no modifiers so hitting always hitting on 5's (unless you modify their BS with magic).

As for that tactic you would never us it with TK either, paying about 5x the pts for 2 shots than you could pay with archers, you buy chariots for combat and shooting is just a bonus.

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Fri Jun 24, 2011 2:56 am
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