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Executioners VS Saurus warriors: who comes out victorious?! 
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The Guiding Eye
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Just had my first REAL game of the new edition (ie it latest longer than 2 turns, ACTUALLY occured - as opposed to opponent not turning up, and was not an introductory game for a friend...)

I narrowly lost (in the sense of I almost took the objective but failed due to some poor luck on the last turn) to Lizardmen in a 2500pt game to 'Claim the Watchtower'. I have made some notes post game of how incredible the Lizardmen appear to have become in the right hands, but one of the finer points I'd noticed was a matchup that I had thought might go my way:

A combat between a unit of 15 Saurus (originally 18 but lost 3 due to a scattered Pit of Shades) and 21 Executioners.

Of course, I'd been a complete idiot by forgetting to use the Cauldrons buff - had originally considered using the 5+ ward on them but got distracted with a question about my potential charges that turn by an opponent before I could declare what it was doing. With hindsight I should probably (if I'd remember in the first place!) have opted for +1 attack (I wish sometime there'd be an option for the cauldron's kb buff to give Exes heroic killing blow (as some fluff suggests) or an special 5+ KB... ;)).

As it was however it was a straight fight that saw the executioners sustaining a hefty 9 casualties and inflicting a return 7 on the Saurus. Sadly even the prescence of the cauldron and BSB could not hold them however (The heavens Blizzard spell had been cast on them denying easier 'to hit' rolls and a deduction of their LD).

Anyway after the game I noted that the Saurus cost a proportion less than the Executioners (about 50pts or so) - I'd not given the exes a banner but had full command of course.

My question of this thread thus is, have you had combat match ups between Saurus and Executioners and if so, what was the outcome and your thoughts (eg to improve next time) of the situation and experience? Of course, its pretty obvious to gain flank charges on the enemy (less to strike you back with).

My personal thoughts are somewhat twofold: that Always Striking Last has seriously hindered the executioners in combination with HAVING to always use a 'special weapon' if the model has these. In the executioners example, they cannot use their Hand Weapons for instance unless their great weapons are destroyed in some way. Similarly, our warriors must ALWAYS use spear and never hand weapons in combat. This is a shame as the new Parry rule has really impressed me: numerous times my opponents would roll 6s when I least expected them to and perhaps most frustratingly for me - being able to save my few Killing Blow wounds.

So, whats your experience with Executioners vs Saurus? Do they match up well? Do we require large units for this to be a success story? If so, what size?? What is the best cauldron support ability to go for (bearing in mind the 5+ ward save means more chances to attack the enemy), what tactics work well eg. unit pairing to create successful combats (such as having a chariot charge the same enemy unit).

I love executioners, and was impressed when reading a thread a while about their effectiveness, but was somewhat dampened with they suffered so badly several times in this last game.

Thanks for your thoughts. Hopefully write a batrep when I have time: the game was very good fun and I enjoyed the new rules on the whole! :D

- Beanz

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Mon Oct 04, 2010 12:51 am
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So, your experience shows that Execs, when victims of hexes, and not buffed to double their attacks, are slightly inferior to Sauruses.
If, under these conditions, they experienced a near match-up, probably having +1 attack would have granted them a fair edge.

ASL means that you need to take 5 more Execs as compared to not having ASL. The relative change in the cost is not that big, when you have already a large unit.

The 8th fashion for druchii magic is to favour Shadow magic.
did you try?


8th edition is fun indeed!

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Mon Oct 04, 2010 5:54 am
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I agree with Calisson's point that you need to have other factors in place for Exectuioners to display their full worth. The Execs must be an optimum size in order to have the frontage to crank out attacks and the numbers to survive until they can use those attacks. Similarly, the Cauldron is virtually a must, since Stubborn allows you to take risks with the Execs, and +1 Attack adds tremendously to their hitting power (especially with that first-round Hatred, the individual probability of a single-attack hitting, wounding and bypassing armor is about as close to a sure thing as you can reasonably get with a rank-and-file in Warhammer Fantasy.)

Unsupported, I wouldn't consider them worthwhile at all, especially against Saurus who are renowned for the high amount of Strength 4 attacks they can use while remaining cheap and hard to break.

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Last edited by Tethlis on Mon Oct 04, 2010 10:07 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Mon Oct 04, 2010 5:08 pm
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The Guiding Eye
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Hiya chaps - thanks for your responses: both very valuable as always!

The unit I took was 21 men arrayed in a 7x3 formation. The enemy were in a 6 wide, 3 ranks deep formation. There were no Hex's on either of us. I had the executioners within range of the cauldron's stubborn ability and of my BSB (mounted on a Dark Peg nearby).

@ Tethlis: Yeah, sadly Saurus make a bad opponent for Exe's: I hadn't quite considered what role they'd adopt in my army (a somewhat hasty army list on my part of things I wanted to try out rather than optimum combinations for VS lizzies), similarly then Chaos Warriors and other multi attack S4 infantry make poor match ups for the exes who, although I don't doubt WOULD overpower the enemy, suffer many casualties to do so - thus reducing their longer term effectiveness throughout one game...

@ Calisson: My bad on mentioning the Ice Blizzard being cast on the exe's (that was the following turn after they managed to outrun the pursuing saurus). It was literally a pure and simple basic normal profile fight. I thought that I had allowed a suitable sized unit (not that I knew it at the time, but the unit WAS 5+ men larger than the enemy's unit) by taking 21 to allow me to overcome the enemy despite their damage output.

Also, I did indeed take Shadow: my level 4 had it (with spells: Miasma, Mindrazor, Pit of Shades and the -D3 T spell) sadly my Pit's kept scattering wildly (even on minor version), Miasma was on someone else (reducing the saurus by any amount of WS would've helped HUGELY), Mindrazor was pointless as was -D3 T...

Anyway it matter not too much: I'll just have to take 30 next time :twisted:

I was just wondering HOW well others have found out Executioners to be as I was surprised to see them lose in that circumstance (I wasnt expecting a landslide wooping of enemy arse but was thinking we'd overcome the saurus). I often find its one thing in Theoryhammer land and quite another in realistic battlefield situations - hence the thread (and to vent my frustration!! :P)

Thanks again chaps

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Mon Oct 04, 2010 5:37 pm
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Exeis are poor vs multiple attack enemies. That's the main thing. You will lose troops to your opponent before you get to strike. So if you want to do well with them, you must target single attack foes to limit the damage you take before you get to strike. Some enemies this is not possible against...

I really wanted them to work in this edition, but they are still outclassed in my experience. Not being able to host your dreadlord really hurts them too.

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Last edited by Sulla on Mon Oct 04, 2010 7:23 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Mon Oct 04, 2010 7:17 pm
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Mine always come with a huge target painted over their heads, my opponents always seem to target them ahead of even BG. In the few times they have been in combat they have:
1) taken out general, bsb and a unit of clan rats (yeah you heard!)
2) failed to do much except perhaps hold when they are near a cauldron.

I think its my fault though, I seem to roll 50% ones when I'm wounding. It's merely unfortunate that the main troops they kill easily can often cut through elves like paper - as you saw against the saurus.

I've never used them in a large enough horde but the potential is there, and as 10-15 man flanking units they can work (though my armies are filled with units like that so I never tried them). When I ran 30 they got nearly wiped out by magic and shooting (30 -> 4 in 1 turn), they lasted the game so no VPs lost, but they didn't generate anything either. I would recommend trying 40 or 50 though, just for the lolz.


Mon Oct 04, 2010 7:20 pm
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They really should be able to take 50 pts of magic banners (they are elite)... that would make them so much better in an instant. :)

Bye
Thanee


Mon Oct 04, 2010 7:43 pm
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Thanee wrote:
They really should be able to take 50 pts of magic banners (they are elite)... that would make them so much better in an instant. :)

Bye
Thanee

That.


Mon Oct 04, 2010 8:05 pm
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YES! A horde would be good with ASF banner... perma-hatred against everyone in those long combats at WS 5!


Mon Oct 04, 2010 9:48 pm
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I think the issue isn't so much that Execs can't take the ASF Banner, but rather that they can't take the ASF Banner OR a BSB. If Execs could have ASF with no BSB required, they would have been even worse than ASF Black Guard were last edition in terms of being overused.

In 8th edition, the Khainite restriction just hurts them badly. Not being able to have a Dreadlord or Master to help provide some high Initiative killing power, battle standard benefits or other unit-enhancing wargear is simply tragic.

That being said though, provided you take enough of them, they can win back points versus virtually any opponent. Remember, the unit being deteriorated over time isn't a big problem just as long as they are not wiped out completely. If they take heavy casualties but eradicate one or two crucial threats, that's still very useful for a Dark Elf general.

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Mon Oct 04, 2010 10:13 pm
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Thanee wrote:
They really should be able to take 50 pts of magic banners (they are elite)... that would make them so much better in an instant. :)

Bye
Thanee


As much as I want this I can't complain. We certainly have a better selection than most armies, though I think we should at least have a more viable death hag.


Mon Oct 04, 2010 11:04 pm
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The Guiding Eye
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Thanks for the points and sympathy/compassion gents. Some interesting points appearing.

First up, Sulla me old lad: absolutely whole heartedly concur with ya fella - I was really behind the idea of using our beautiful executioners (still think Hedstrom's models are timeless and amongst the best druchii models out there - have a very vivid colour scheme for mine too! :cry:) on the battlefield.

Sadly, as you and almost everyone else point out: their mostly situational role (VS very low attack enemies/enemy flanks - for smaller exe units) coupled with the lack of effective character enhancement (who could strike before the enemy/add a more expensive magic banner to the unit whilst standing a chance of surviving attacks concentrated on the BSB) make it rather awkward for the effective use of executioners.

As I also mentioned earlier - not being able to wield or choose the use of the Executioners hand weapons, though subtle, further limits and situationalises (real word?! :?) them further.

I think that, although adding a combat character against a large enemy unit would'nt do much (there'll still be full supporting attacks once the dreadlord/masters attacks have been resolved), against smaller elite enemy (which the exes SHOULD be our unit of choice to use against) units this would be a useful addition to destroying the enemy unit completely.

Saying that, I'll add that I'm not going to merely retire my executioners to my shelves, I'll keep trying them out until I'm fully content that I've given them a proper 'road testing'.

Ok, so Exes have become situational for smaller units whilst larger units can be of use (I wont try and steal the thread about 50 man units of Exes found HERE...). Either way (small unit or big) Executiners pretty much NEED the cauldron of blood to be fully effective. Obviously some Augment spells help to: the 2 Metal lore spells spring to mind as the most prominent.

I'm almost certain Calisson the DRAICH has discussed this in detail, but what is the optimum unit size for executioners? You mentioned the 5+ models rule? What I'm rather wondering now is - ok, I've tried a unit of 21 - is it worth going to the effort of attempting a unit of 30, or maybe more? (I know a lot of this depends on the list I use but I usually take an 'all rounder list' - in this case the Exes would probably be my main Hammer unit).

I'm also tempted to re-title or start a new thread (as the initial point has pretty much been resolved now) about dealing with saurus and saurus cavalry in 8th (obviously from a druchii perspective). Would others find this useful to discuss?

- Beanz

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Tue Oct 05, 2010 12:00 am
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Dangerous Beans wrote:
I'm also tempted to re-title or start a new thread (as the initial point has pretty much been resolved now) about dealing with saurus and saurus cavalry in 8th (obviously from a druchii perspective). Would others find this useful to discuss?

- Beanz
Expect a lot of 'Purple sun' replies. It is such an overwhelmingly powerful no-brainer vs undead, dwarves and lizards in this edition...

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Tue Oct 05, 2010 1:56 am
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The Guiding Eye
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sulla wrote:
Expect a lot of 'Purple sun' replies. It is such an overwhelmingly powerful no-brainer vs undead, dwarves and lizards in this edition...
Good point, it certainly looks like the more reliable in terms of accuracy and number of units affected compared to Pit of Shades - which, tbh I found to be very innaccurate: even with clever placing...

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Tue Oct 05, 2010 8:22 pm
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True, two of this edition's most powerful armies (Lizardmen, Dwarves) are also wildly vulnerable to Purple Sun. I'm curious as to whether or not this was intentional or not on the part of Games Workshop; create a wildly powerful devastating uber spell capable of handling two of the most dangerous armies under the new edition ruleset.

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Tue Oct 05, 2010 8:22 pm
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The Guiding Eye
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I don't think it was intentional: the 2 armies also happen to have good magic defence techniques (Lizzes for the lev 4 dispeller, Dwarves for multiple Scrolls (Runes)).

That doesn't mean that its not the least be handy against them however ;)

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Tue Oct 05, 2010 8:27 pm
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If anything, the scariness of Purple Sun is just as effective if it doesn't go off. If you can get all your other spells off then you're set.

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Tue Oct 05, 2010 8:33 pm
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