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Dark Elf Cavalry 
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Joined: Mon Feb 27, 2012 1:15 pm
Posts: 120
Ok, so I'm just gonna ask it...why do I see so many people taking CoKs and Dark Riders in their army lists?

Imo they are a huge point sink that can be much better spent on almost if not ANY other units. I have taken CoKs in a few games and they just roll over to ranges attacks, magic, close combat, etc.

Ok, so let's break it down:

Dark Riders:

17 points/model
S3 (S4 on the charge), T3, 1 wound, 2 attacks (counting the horse) 5+ armour save


10 points/model
s3, T3, 1 wound, 2 attacks, 5+ armour save (4+ against shooting), slaver speacial rule

Is the strength bonus really worth paying almost double for your unit?


27 points/model
S4 (S6 on charge), 1 attack, 2+ armour; COs get a WS3 S4 attack and suffer from stupidity

Black Guard:

13 points/model
S4, 2x WS 5 S4 attacks, 5+ armour save, stubburn, warrior elite

Stubburn and warrior elite are huge upsides and Stupid is a huge downside. Also, do you think it's worth over DOUBLE the points for the 2+ armour save when any units of comparible points should either melt most of the save or do enough attacks to make them irrelavent?

I am not trying to be critical, I am just really curious as to your opinions here. If there is a good enough arguement, maybe I will give them another try.


Tue Jun 12, 2012 1:47 am
Lord of the Dragon Caves
Lord of the Dragon Caves
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Location: The Dragon Caves of the Underway (Indianapolis IN)
It's speed you are paying for with Dark Riders, not the strength bonus of the spear.

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Tue Jun 12, 2012 3:10 am
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Slave (off the Altar)

Joined: Mon Jan 30, 2012 8:42 am
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Location: Australia
Definitely the speed.

With Dark Riders, you are not taking them as a combat unit, as they're not really equipped to be much more than warmachine hunters in terms of putting out damage. You want to take these guys as:

(a) Redirectors - You use their great manouverability (plus their vanguard move at start of game) to place them in between your prize unit and your opponent's biggest hammer. Sure your riders will get wiped out, but your opponent has to waste a turn killing them in combat and another turn repositioning. Meanwhile your best units are happily killing away. Think about it: If your 5 riders (100 pts) are preventing your opponent's awesome unit (400pts) from getting into the fight straight away, the rest of the battlefield is skewed points-wise in your favour, giving you a good advantage. You've lost 100 pts but in exchange you are clearly the dominant force in the main battle-area and should do some serious damage. Foot troops such as corsairs just aren't as reliable for getting them into the right position at the right time to pull off this delaying tactic.

(b) Flank harrassers- No one likes being flank charged. It removes your steadfast and gives your opponent +1 combat res. Dark riders (again, as they are so much more manouverable than corsairs) can do exactly this fairly often. You would never send them in alone (they're too weak), but you would use them to set up a combo-charge where your unit (lets say warriors) meets your opponent's unit (lets say empire swordmen) head on, but then your riders scoot in from the side for the flank charge, potentially turning your iffy combats into complete routs. In this example, you have gained +1 combat res for the flank charge and you have denied your opponent +3 combat res for extra ranks (a net res difference of 4!). Again, foot troops are too slow to guarantee flank charges every time.

(c) Bullet sponges- For the above reasons, your opponent won't like you having Riders running up and down the flank causing mischief (i.e. causing (a) and (b)), and may well sink some shooting into them. Well be glad that they did, because a unit of 5 riders is not too much points to lose, and it means one less turn of your opponent shooting at your more prized units.

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Tue Jun 12, 2012 4:57 am
Malekith's Best Friend
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Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 2:28 am
Posts: 1734
Location: California
As for knights, all heavy cavalry, be they cold one knights or demigriphs, main advantage is on the charge do to most of them having a +2 strength bonus during the turn they charge.

Their speed, an average of 14 on the march and 9-20 inches on the charge, they are bound to get it more times than not.

Howvever, their weakness is 3 fold.

1. Once the charge is done, if they are still in combat they loose most if not all of their advantages (in our case strength and hatred). They are forced to fight it out, and may only have one rank, if that, to work with. They have to have overkill on the wounds when they charge.

2. The flanks are wide, so are begging to be charged, You can have twice as many troops fighting a cavalry unit on the flank as the said cavalry unit.

3. Lore of Metal. A 2+ armor save is an easy kill for some of the lore of metal direct damage and magic missiles.

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Tue Jun 12, 2012 6:58 am
Malekith's Best Friend

Joined: Wed May 21, 2003 8:12 am
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Location: UmeƄ, Sweden
wylieboy89 wrote:

(b) Flank harrassers- No one likes being flank charged. It removes your steadfast

Unfortunately this is NOT the case, you can never remove steadfast by charging in the flank (only the combat resolution bonus).

To answer the original poster, I personally do not use cavalry in my lists at all as I too prefer other units. Harpies are even faster and more maneuverable than Dark Riders, and Chariots are both more resilient and hard-hitting than the corresponding points worth of CoKs.

Tue Jun 12, 2012 11:41 am

Joined: Tue Sep 01, 2009 5:33 pm
Posts: 539
I would say double check this, but I believe it is called Disruption, if the flanking unit has a 2nd complete rank or more, it disrupts the unit it charges negating the steadfast of that unit.

Tue Jun 12, 2012 12:09 pm
Malekith's Best Friend
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It is indeed called "Disruption" and Setomidor has the correct understanding. Being Steadfast and counting rank bonuses are unrelated.

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Tue Jun 12, 2012 12:39 pm
Cold One Knight

Joined: Sun Jul 11, 2010 2:00 pm
Posts: 245
thenick18 wrote:
I would say double check this, but I believe it is called Disruption, if the flanking unit has a 2nd complete rank or more, it disrupts the unit it charges negating the steadfast of that unit.

Nope, he is right. You will disrupt ranks thus the unit will not get any rank bonus for CR but you can never disrupt steadfast. (only things like forest do that)

Tue Jun 12, 2012 12:44 pm
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Joined: Mon Apr 30, 2012 12:18 am
Posts: 104
Cavalry is a fast alternative to our other combat units. And your right, as soon as the charge is over for our COK, there screwed. How do you fix this? Kill the unit on the first round of combat :D I have learned that a COK unit should never charge alone unless the unit is small and can easily be taken out. I almost always charge a unit with a hydra or my spearmen horde to help my COK. Dark Riders are fantastic because they're fast. First turn I can be in my opponents deployment zone shooting him. And sure they won't do much damage but eventually :), he will devote part of his force to turn around and deal with them, when that unit could be dealing with my spearmen horde, my 2 hydras or my black guard. Thats just my little speal hoped it helped!

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Tue Jun 12, 2012 3:39 pm
Malekith's Personal Guard

Joined: Sun Feb 14, 2010 12:13 am
Posts: 992
8E really sucked a lot of the usefulness out of cavalry as a combat unit. Unless they break a unit on the charge they are likely going to die... and now it's virtually impossible to break most units on the charge.

Still, they have their uses.

1) Maneuver.

Let's face it, you aren't taking cavalry because of its hitting power. You're taking it because you can apply that hitting power to the exact spot it needs to be at.

So. The way to use combat cavalry is not in the frontal assault role, but as a flankhammer. Basically, pin the unit down with a big block of infantry (spearmen or RXBs work well for this), hold for a turn, the the cavalry slams into the flank to disrupt ranks and/or add a boatload of casualties to CR (or ACR).

This role covers both shielded Dark Riders (in units of 10+ to disrupt ranks) and small units of Cold One Knights (usually 5 with musician for extra ACR).

2) Superhammer

This is the classic kitchen sink approach. Take a big unit of Cold One Knights (10-15) with either the Standard of Hag Graef or the Banner of Murder, give them a Hydra Banner BSB, possibly even a Unkillable Dreadlord, have the cauldron in the back give them an extra attack, and charge!!!!. Hits like a ton of bricks and can smash most medium-size units to pieces... and even has a decent chance to grind on subsequent turns (with S4 all 'round and Stubborn from the Dreadlord).

Just don't take on any Chosenstars or 50+ infantry units.

3) Warmachine Hunting

Dark Riders were born for this role. 12" vanguard + 18" march = charging warmachines on turn 2. 5 S4 attacks on the charge (+5 S3 from the horses) gives them a very good chance to kill the crew outright. Shades are the Dark Riders' only competition... and very well might take them a couple turns of marching to get to charge position.

4) Bait and Flee

Hopefully we all know this one. Put your Dark Riders in front of the enemy at a good (for you) angle and shoot, flee the charge pulling the unit out of position to attack you (or into position for you to flank-charge him), rally and do it again. Another trick the Dark Riders excell at - Harpies can do the job cheaper, but can't move on the rally turn, much less shoot.

5) Speedbump

Like the bait and flee... only you stand and shoot instead of flee because you don't want him to redirect. Harpies do this better, ah, I mean cheaper but sometimes you must use what you've got left once the harpies are all dead.

6) Screening against shooting

Again, harpies probably do this cheaper... but harpies also tend to die quickly.

7) General mayhem

This is a catchall for 'anything else a maneuverable unit can do to get on the enemy general's nerves.' This includes things like mage/hero hunting, running down small remnants of units for VP, herding fleeing units off the table, that sort of thng. Sometimes just getting a unit into the enemy's flank or rear will cause him to totally throw his battle plan out the window and do something dumb.

In short, killing stuff is often the LEAST important function of cavalry.

Tue Jun 12, 2012 7:48 pm
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