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Fielding Dark Riders 
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Highborn
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Always was and always will be. The Dark Riders are just one of them staples you can guarentee to be in every decent army. But how to field them? With the points and models cost a logical answer would be of minimum size of 5. So why isnt the rest of the choices as easy?

So i'm putting it out there. How you you set up your DR? Crossbows? Shields? Command? and how it work for you?

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:46 am
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I always like to field at least 2 sometimes 3 units of DR's.

Units of 6 with rxbs and musician.

These are great though, with the advent of Core Harpies I may be cutting back to just 2 units and then 2 units of harpies.

As to effectiveness

AWESOME

Asides from the march blocking potential u can circle a slower unit for turns on end pincushioning them until u can get the rear charge and break them.

An example of this would be when one unit managed to hold up 25 marauders for 3 turns stopping them from reaching my lines until they only had 7 members remaining. (I may point out here that my opponent rolled Double 1's on every single panic test)

Against shooting armies i use them to get up to the cannons quickly and take them out.

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:52 am
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I give them rxb's,musician and put a sorc in one unit (i field 2). Their main goal is to get behind enemylines (normally one does get through with unit strenght 6 or more. They take out small units and single characters that don't strike first (mainly warmachines, mages and light cavalry) while going through and then turn back for a nice rear charge. I also try to use them to dominate movement, if they get to enemys flank or rear he's going to have hardtimegetting them neutralized.


Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:58 am
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Out of curiosity, what would be a better unit for destroying war machines, the DRs (as mentioned above) Harpies, or Shades (fighting or shooting)?

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 10:28 am
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I field a unit of 5 with RxBs and musician. I can't think of a list I have written which doesn't have them in (unless it's the random games of 500pts we play occaisionally).

I use them for march blocking and general harrasment. They have been known to multicharge things for fun as well.

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 10:41 am
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I always use 2 units of them with Repeating Crossbows and musician and will always do it. I even place them on each side of the deploiement zone as my first units. It's fun to see shooting units placed in front, so I just move away from them and the opponent will have to move them to a better place. :)


Mon Aug 11, 2008 10:49 am
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I always take a unit of 6 with Rxb's, never fail me unless I verse scouting skinks (I hate skinks so much...).

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 12:07 pm
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Quote:
Out of curiosity, what would be a better unit for destroying war machines, the DRs (as mentioned above) Harpies, or Shades (fighting or shooting)?

dark riders, because all you need is two dark riders left, and even one with hatred might be able to. Harpies are good warmachine hunters though, because they so cheap, and flying is a bit better than move 9 and fast cav. Shades are good because they can see off many units with their shooting.

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 2:34 pm
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The key with dark riders is the same as much of the rest of WFB, especially support units. These units require.

1) utility (rxb's allow them multi-task)
2) low cost so that they may be sacrificed at need
3) redundancy

Set them up for your particular army build with these elements in mind. Bascially, dark riders are so good the only real way to field them poorly is to fail to include them.

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 2:39 pm
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Highborn
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So clarifying DR are best deployed in 5-6 with RxB and a musician

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 5:34 pm
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Lord of the Dragon Caves
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I use 3 units of 5 with musicians and repeater crossbows.

Unit size is 5 (not 6) since they are a semi-disposable unit, and so I want to keep the cost down. That being said, I always give them repeater crossbows since even though it makes them cost more, it makes the unit more versatile. The ability to stand and shoot means that Dark Riders armed with x-bows have more options for dealing with enemy fast cavalry and other light elements--you can stand and shoot and do some casualties allowing you to take charges you might otherwise have to flee from. The movement ability of fast cavalry also allows you to deliver shooting with surgical precision, frequently allowing you to hit targets that are screened from other missile fire.

Musicians are must since my Dark Riders flee so often -- I can't count how many times I've rolled a "9" on rally attempts that would have failed without a musician.

I field 3 units for a few reasons. First, because Dark Riders ar evulnerable to magic and shooting, I want redundancy. Second, for the deployment phase, I like to start out by putting down low-value units that dont give away my overall depolyment strategy and that can rapidly redeploy one the game starts. Having 3 untis of Dark Riders (and some harpies) frequently lets me get a good idea about the enemy deployment before I have to put down anything of real consequence.

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:06 pm
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in most of my lists i am running 2 units of 5 with repeater crossbows and musicians. This gives me a flanking unit on each side of the board able to pepper the enemy with 10 shots after moving, and flank charge or marchblock where necessary. The musician is just an insurance policy.


Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:12 pm
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Why doesn't anyway take 10 with a full command? Points cost? (Again, curious)

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 6:48 pm
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Maeth wrote:
Why doesn't anyway take 10 with a full command? Points cost? (Again, curious)


Depends on their use and place in Army List. When they are used as flankers, bait, warmachine hunters, march blockers etc they don't really need additional rank bonus or victim absorption. It is expensive points-wise becouse You take one unit playing same role with rank bonus equal to second unit.

Such big unit is also harder to maneuvre an dtakes lot of spece on battlefield, smaller units can fit everywhere, such big block not necesserly.

Ther thing is that one unit can't be in two places at once as two units can ;) One less warmachine shooting, one less fast cavalry, one less scouting skirmishers, one more rank bonus taken.

Unless they can be used as shock unit, without RXBx with full command and hero, with hatred they are really something in close combat and can take even not to pumped up elite unit.

The idea I was playing with is:

Master, Dark Steed, Game Of Nightmares, Full Gear, lance (in largest DR unit), 9 DRs full command.

The general idea and purpouse of such unit is one devastating charge, cause fear and break due to outnumber. There's 3 S6 attacks (Master's lance), 5 S5 (DRs, Herald) and steeds , plus hatred. Then they can be used as heavy hitting unit for rear/side charges...

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 7:07 pm
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Iyagd wrote:
Maeth wrote:
Why doesn't anyway take 10 with a full command? Points cost? (Again, curious)


Depends on their use and place in Army List. When they are used as flankers, bait, warmachine hunters, march blockers etc they don't really need additional rank bonus or victim absorption. It is expensive points-wise becouse You take one unit playing same role with rank bonus equal to second unit.

Such big unit is also harder to maneuvre an dtakes lot of spece on battlefield, smaller units can fit everywhere, such big block not necesserly.

Ther thing is that one unit can't be in two places at once as two units can ;) One less warmachine shooting, one less fast cavalry, one less scouting skirmishers, one more rank bonus taken.

Unless they can be used as shock unit, without RXBx with full command and hero, with hatred they are really something in close combat and can take even not to pumped up elite unit.

The idea I was playing with is:

Master, Dark Steed, Game Of Nightmares, Full Gear, lance (in largest DR unit), 9 DRs full command.

The general idea and purpouse of such unit is one devastating charge, cause fear and break due to outnumber. There's 3 S6 attacks (Master's lance), 5 S5 (DRs, Herald) and steeds , plus hatred. Then they can be used as heavy hitting unit for rear/side charges...


This unit idea sounds like a unit of wood elf wildriders.
I like the idea, you can boost this unit by using Cauldron of blood.
Within 24 inch of cauldron, put the blessing on this unit and charge!


Mon Aug 11, 2008 7:32 pm
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Thanks for that, now I know to get a unit or 2, but are they more useful than COK?

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 7:34 pm
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Maeth wrote:
Thanks for that, now I know to get a unit or 2, but are they more useful than COK?


Dark riders and COK have his good/bad things.

Dark riders are very fast but fragil, so if they get hit by shooting/combat they die pretty fast.
They are Core choise and bit cheaper then Cold one riders.
You can give them Xbows and maybee good for wizzard hunt.

Cold one riders are stronger in combat, the WS5 and good strenght of rider + cold one makes it easy too kill enemy.
Causing Fear can be very good.
it's a special choise, movement 7 is ok but not the fastest and some times stupidity can ruin your plan/game.
COK have very good armour safe so they are good protected by enemy hits.

When use of COK or dark riders, it's just how the army list look like.


Mon Aug 11, 2008 7:51 pm
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Thanks, that's sort of the answer I was hoping for. I didn't quite want to replace my beloved Knights without good reason.

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 8:13 pm
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If you use the search function you can find several threads discussing dark riders with shields and get the different views on those units.

Personally, I like a large unit of dark riders with shields. Hatred makes them hit harder and lead by a noble with a fear causing item they are very effective.

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 8:22 pm
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Dark Riders are not the necessity in this book as they were in the last one. With harpies as core, they can provide the mage/war machine hunting at almost half the price of the DR. It's my opinion that DR will lose their role as hunters and start to focus on harassing with shooting, or taking out flanks. Harpies can simply do the jobs I need done at a better price.

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 8:32 pm
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Lord of the Dragon Caves
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I think both harpies and Dark Riders are necessary to really control the movement of your opponent's army. Harpies are great for dropping in behind an enemy unit of infantry and preventing it from marching -- sometimes for an entire game.

Dark Riders are better at bait-and-flee tactics to redirect the enemy rather than just slow them down. The simple reason beaing that after they flee, they can move freely after rallying -- allowing them to repeat the same action over and over again. Harpies can't do this even if they do manage to rally.

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:15 pm
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Dvyim: You, of course, are right about the bait-and-flee tactics. But I still think that if you need to take something out quickly, Harpies are the way to go. If I have a nasty enemy mage, I would rather sacrifice a 55 point unit than an 85 point unit. I would advocate taking one unit of each, though I think that harpies are cheaper money wise, so I'll probably be going with them.

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:27 pm
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Quote:
1) utility (rxb's allow them multi-task)
2) low cost so that they may be sacrificed at need
3) redundancy


Forgive my ignorance but what does redundancy mean?


Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:41 pm
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Redundancy is having multiple units in armies that can preform the same task. That way, if you have one unit that gets killed, it doesn't ruin your entire plan. Basically, spreading your eggs across many baskets.

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 9:55 pm
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Talking about redundancy, I have been using 4 units of Dark Riders. It doesn't matter how many you kill there is still another unit or two just running around and shooting at you. It is also fun to just say okay now I have 40 shots on your Warriors there. and just grab large handfuls of dice!

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Mon Aug 11, 2008 10:44 pm
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