I took my Eldar to a local RTT tournament this weekend. 1000 points is a very limiting value, and I went through about 5 different concepts before I finally settled on the list below.
Farseer with Doom and Runes of Warding
5 Dire Avengers
10 Storm Guardians with 2 Flamers and Warlock with Destructor
7 Fire Dragons
3 Wave Serpents with twin-linked Scatter Lasers and Shurken Cannon
2 Fire Prisms
I felt that the 5 Eldar tanks would be very resilient at this level and the Fire Dragons, Guardians and Fire Prisms would be able to put down a lot of fire-power.
The tournament had some custom scenarios that made things a bit weird. Every game had kill points as one of the objectives, and each game was limited to only 4 rounds. The odd bit was that the we could complete the round up to 3 times within the two hour time limit. So for example, if you completed all 4 turns of the game and still had time left, you could re-roll to see who goes first, re-deploy and then start the game all over again. Then at the end of the round, your best score from the games completed would be used as the score for that round. In my case, I was able to complete 2 games in each of the 3 rounds. Another common theme was that I was able to win the roll and go first in each game.
The first round was spearhead deployment with an objective in the center of the table that could be picked up be a troop unit. Then you would score points for every turn that you managed to have it within 8″ of your deployment corner. The caveat, though, was that you couldn’t pick it up with a transport, the troops had to get out to grab the objective, but then you could get back into the transport. My opponent for the first round was a Black Templars player with a 10 man Tactical Squad, a 5 man Terminator squad, a 5 man Assault squad, a 10 man Scout squad, Emperor’s Champion and a Predator with lascannons. My plan was to zip forward with my Avenger Serpent and grab the objective, while the other two serpents surrounded it to give it protection. This didn’t work out as well as I hoped because the objective was on the bottom edge of a hill and I wasn’t able to get over the hill without going fast, so I couldn’t drop off the Avengers quite close enough and ended up getting wiped out before they could get the objective back into their transport. Not all was lost, though, since one of my Fire Prisms was able to wreck the Predator on the first turn. Then between the Fire Dragons, Fire Prisms and Scatter Lasers I was able to slowly take out all but the Terminators and Scouts. The first game ended with a score of 5-1 in my favor.
The second game, I decided to take the other side of the table, and that worked out a bit better for me as far as the main objective went. I was able to get the objective back to my deployment and held it there for the last two turns. Sadly, though, I wasn’t able to take out the Predator as early and that cost me a pair of Wave Serpents over the course of the game. On the last turn, his Terminators were able to assault my remaining Serpent and destroyed it. The game ended with each of us getting 4 points.
This was a good set of games, but it was obvious that my opponent was a bit rusty. He was forgetting attacks in assault and generally playing a bit sloppily. He was a good opponent, though, and I gave him a few pointers at the end of the game that hopefully helped him along.
The second round was straight-up kill points with a Pitched Battle deployment. The only addition was that if you managed to seize the initiative your entire army would get the Fleet rule for the first turn. My opponent was a Dark Angels player with Belial, Samuel in his Land Speeder, a squad of 5 Terminators, a squad of 6 Bikers with 2 meltaguns, a 5 man Tac squad and a Razorback with Heavy Bolters.
The first game I deployed in the center and he deployed his bikers behind some trees to my right and his Razorback and Samuel behind a hill to my right. The Terminators were in reserve. On the first turn, everything moved up and my Prisms managed to immobilize the Razorback. His bikes came around the trees, but didn’t hurt my Serpents. The Terminators dropped in behind the trees and started moving up. My Fire Dragons blasted 4 of the bikes, but they held strong. The Fire Prisms finished off the Razorback. The bikes and Terminators then managed to wipe out my Fire Dragons. I was not able to kill off the Terminators and Samuel was able to take out one of my Prisms on the last turn to make the score 2-2.
The second game I deployed pretty much the same way. My opponent deployed his Razorback and Bikes behind the hill on my right, while Samuel and the Terminators would Deepstrike. I moved up to the center of the board, and the Prisms were able to knock out 3 of the bikers. The terminators dropped on the front edge of the hill and his bikes ran up over the top, but were only able to shake the Fire Dragon’s Serpent. The Dragons then hopped out and with the help of the Fire Prisms they took out the Terminators and Belial. The bikers ran the Dragons off the board, but not before the Dragons took out one of the Bikers. The remaining two bikers fell to Prism and Scatter Laser fire. The last two turns were spent firing at the rear of Samuel’s speeder, but I was only able to immobilize it, regardless of the amount of fire I poured into it. The game ended with a score of 3-1 in my favor.
These games were great and by far the toughest of the day. My opponent played well, and I just didn’t have the fire power to get through the tough armor.
Round three was Pitched Battle with kill points again, but this time one Troops unit was designated to have a bomb implanted in it. If you could get the unit into assault, then you could detonate the bomb at will, but otherwise it had a 50% change of exploding at the start of turns 3 and 4. My opponent was an Imperial Guard player with 3 Chimeras, a Battle Tank, a Demolisher, 3 10 man squads of Veterans and a Command Squad. I setup with everything in the center and my opponent did the same pretty much. My Storm Guardians held the bomb and went to my left behind some trees with the Dire Avengers. The Fire Prisms took out most of a Veteran Squad that was deployed on a hill, while my Fire Dragons went up the middle and then jumped out to nuke the Demolisher. The Dragons and their Serpent then got take out by the Battle Tank and some melta guns. At this point the Storm Guardians jumped out of their tank and tried to get close enough to one Veteran squad to assault, but failed. They would kill off a few veterans, but then die to the bomb implanted in them. The Guard’s bomb ended up taking out a Chimera and the Guardsmen inside it, and that was it. The game ended with a score of 6-4.
The second game went a bit better for me. Deployment was pretty much the same, but with the Guard’s Chimeras in a line to the right of center. I sped all of my Serpents straight at the Chimeras and hoped. The Prisms again blasted the Guardsmen on the hill. My Fire Dragon’s tank did take some hits, but ended up only stunned. My Dragons jumped out and blasted the Command Squad’s Chimera. Most of that squad died in the wreckage, but the rest were killed off in assault by the Fire Dragons. The Storm Guardians got out and hoped to assault the Guardsmen in the Chimera on my far right, but I was unable to wreck it with Scatter Lasers, so they would have to wait a turn. At that point their bomb exploded and killed half of them. The remaining ones were able to light up the guardsmen with their flamers, but couldn’t finish them off and were too far away to assault. Enough Fire Dragons survived the turn to be able to attack and then assault the Demolisher and wreck it. At the end I had taken out the Demolisher, 2 Chimeras, 2 Veteran Squads and the Command Squad, while he only managed to kill the Fire Dragons. The game ended with a score of 7-2.
I had never played against Imperial Guard before, so it was an interesting game. It was also the only game where my Storm Guardians really managed to do anything.
At the end of the day I had managed to score full battle points in the first and third games, and I did well enough in the 2nd game to earn first place for the day. I was pleasantly surprised and definitely happy to have won the day due to my gameplay as opposed to my painting skills (my buddy Nick won the painting award). The missions were definitely a bit goofy and the prevalence of kill points as an objective was a bit disappointing. Also, being able to play two games against each opponent was quite helpful, since I was able to learn from the first game and then change tactics if needed in the second game. The final thing that helped immensely was simply luck. My Fire Prisms were extremely accurate in most of the games and were the MVPs of the day. The Fire Dragons came in a close second, while the Storm Guardians were pretty weak, even in the last game.
Overall, my plan for the day held true. I stuck to my guns and played aggressive. Few armies had the ability to deal with 5 Eldar tanks and the speed and firepower really made the army work.