Unit Discussion Darkling Covens Bleak Swords

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Unit Discussion Darkling Covens Bleak Swords

Post by Saintofm »

For the longest time, the two most common core models of any dark elf unit were the warriors, which not only came as options in the same box (thus allowing for multiple bits of spare parts) but came in the carieties of stab it with a spear or shoot it with a crossbow. For the longest time, they were also the only plastic unit. As of 8th eddition they included Swordsmen called Bleak Swords. And now for a mini of a female doing she sexy pose with bagpipes.


Like their cousin units in the same box, they have 1 wound, save of 5, move of 6, and bravery of 6. Unlike darkshards which are meant to stay away from combat, and Dreadspears which are defencive, these guys are meant to get into the heat of battle.

THeir Lordling unit champion gets an extra attack, their bravery can be boosted by 1 with their standard, or by 2, if they are within 8 inches of a Darkling Coven’s Hero, their horn player could get you a reroll on a charge die that doesn't do so well. And for bonus defence, Darkshield give them a chance to reroll failed save rolls of 1, and in Combat, 1 AND 2.

This pure offensiveness if shown int their stats and unit rules. They hit on 3’s and wound on 4’s. ANd while they lack the rend or more than one damage per wound, they make up for it in attacks.

Normally they have one attack. However the Quicksilver Blades Rule grants an extra attack if your to hit score was a 6. It dosn't say that these extra attacks cannot generate extra attacks, and as unlikely as this is, you could get far more attacks in then you have minies that can actually be in range. If you have a unit of 20+ swordsmen at the time, this is upped to 5’s and 6’s, so upping your odds. Its slim, but its fun.

This makes them pretty good support and anti lightly/moderatly armored unit.


This of course brings us to their problems.

At 5+ saves, they are moderatly armored so anyone that can eat through armor or deals tones of attacks might be a nightmare to deal with.

And while I can see a unit of 30, I'd leave the 40 size for the bigger games as like I said before, big units=big target.


So where to use them:

Units of 20 work, no more than 30 unless you are doing bigger games. Have them team up with one of the heavier hitting units and have one flank and the other charge in directly.

You could also have them team up with spearmen, to protect their flanks, and then fank the enemy while they take the side.

I havn’t had a chance to play as them myself, so this will be a fun time to try them out.
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Re: Unit Discussion Darkling Covens Bleak Swords

Post by Maisie Medrano »

I'd say dreadspears as bleakswords are a bit rubbish. Bring able to attack in 3 ranks with careful positioning means you also don't need to expose much frontage to get full unit attacks.

Executioners are basically as good as black guard against most targets but much, much better against high armour targets. I don't think there's anything that blackguard do better against except enemies that get increased Armour against no rend damage. . !eek! !eek! !eek!
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Re: Unit Discussion Darkling Covens Bleak Swords

Post by Rathstar »

In GH19 npth bleakswords and dreadspears went down 10 pts, however Black Guard went down 20 to 120/320. This makes the standard battleline even more obsolete compared to the elite infantry. Making the standard bleakswords and dreadspears only worth it for screening, sacrificing to sorceresses and cheap objective campers. Even then they have competition from the cheaper corsairs (if you have the ally points spare) and dreadshards which for 1 pt a model more will do a bit of damage at 16" away from the enemy.

My conclusion is to use as little dreadshards/dreadspears/bleakswords as possible for screening, sacrificing and cheap objective campers and then spend the rest of the points on other units. Currently my 2k list has 3 x 10 dreadshards for the warhost, but I do include 40 corsairs and a fleet master as allies. If i didn't have the ally points spare I probably would include some but not many dreadspears or bleakswords.
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