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Witch Elf unit o Doom 
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Highborn
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1 Death Hag - BSB, Standard of Hag Graef, Rune of Khain
15 Witch Elves - FC, Rune of Khain

Maybe I'm wrong here but this unit with KB from the Cauldron can probably take a Cav charge and win. It has between 20 and 24 attacks going first. With KB you should be able to get 2 kills out of that on average. It has an SCR of 4 and likely will outnumber whatever it encounters after 1 round of combat. Perfect for killing off the VC regen bunker.

Obvious weakness is it can be baited and shot to pieces so maybe a harpy screen can help there. Its expensive but compared to the BG unit of Doom its about par maybe even cheaper.

You can probably improve by adding 2 more WE and spreading them out to be 6 wide.

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Anyone else find it kinda interesting that DE will not use gun powder because its unreliable but seem to have no problem using cold ones?


Thu Oct 09, 2008 2:36 pm
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Dragon Lord
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Also unlike Black Guard, the Death Hag can be singled out and killed from afar, then the witch elves suddenly lose their always-strike-first-ness and are again very soft target.

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Thu Oct 09, 2008 2:46 pm
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Highborn
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Dalamar wrote:
Also unlike Black Guard, the Death Hag can be singled out and killed from afar, then the witch elves suddenly lose their always-strike-first-ness and are again very soft target.


True, lets see of the things that can single her out.
1. Long Rifle (a harpy screen is useful)
2. Challenge (Hag can take that)
3. Regular H2H attacks (hopefully nothing will be left out of the front rank for that to be a threat)
4. Spells
a. Death Magic - Soul Stealer
b. Metal Lore - Rule of Burning Iron...ok St 1 hit probably a waste of Casting Dice
c. Spells that hit every model in the unit
5. Cannon Ball...why not!


Can anyone think of something I'm missing?

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Anyone else find it kinda interesting that DE will not use gun powder because its unreliable but seem to have no problem using cold ones?


Thu Oct 09, 2008 3:00 pm
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Cold One Knight
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Quote:
Maybe I'm wrong here but this unit with KB from the Cauldron can probably take a Cav charge and win.


I don't think a competent general will do that.

Its a very expensive unit. And you don't have much control over it due to frenzy.

I like your idea of experimenting with it. I saddens me that Black Guard is such a popular choice nowadays (almost mandatory :/) I can't blame Druchii generals take them because they're just too good for there point costs...


Thu Oct 09, 2008 3:11 pm
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Rending Star
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There's a very decent chance, that you do not roll enough killing blows and the otherwise rather puny attacks will be saved against, so that you are still facing quite a few attacks, which typically translate into dead Witch Elves rather quickly.

Too much of a gamble against anything with a decent armor save (3+ and better).

Bye
Thanee


Thu Oct 09, 2008 3:17 pm
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Highborn
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@Cervix - Sure it's a musing on my part...it may not work at all but I have a game this weekend and i think i will try this out...what the heck.

@Thanee - very true but doing the math it looks like you should average about 2 KB attacks out of that after throwing out successful poison attack and on average 1 wound on the normal attacks should get through armor saves...So on a unit of 5 knights the 2 remaining guys get there 5 or so attacks, On average they lose by 3 CR. Ouch! Not that you would go inviting this but I wonder how the numbers add up with the BG unit taking the same charge? That would be interesting wouldn't it? BG with KB from Cauldron taking the charge of 5 knights (any flavor I guess will do) with FC.

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Anyone else find it kinda interesting that DE will not use gun powder because its unreliable but seem to have no problem using cold ones?


Thu Oct 09, 2008 3:59 pm
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Rending Star
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Well, BG have one fewer Attack per model, but a higher WS and Strength. Against 2+ AS they will likely fare better, against 1+ it should be roughly even (better WS balancing out the fewer Attacks; though I wouldn't even give them KB with the Cauldron, but an extra Attack rather).

And that's just the BG, without equipping them like you did with the WE (i.e. a BSB and an item for the Champ; which could mean that six of their Attacks are S6 (Soulrender or Greatweapon for the BSB and Crimson Death for the Champ) and really hurt cavalry, even the 1+ AS kind).

However...

IF the dice come out against you... the BG are still Ld 9 Stubborn, while the Witches lose Frenzy and are in trouble of getting overrun.

WE need to pick low armor targets.

Bye
Thanee


Thu Oct 09, 2008 5:49 pm
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The witches don't have an avarage of 2 KB.
They have poisonned attacks, autowounds on sixes to hit, but with armour save.
This means that on avarage (lets say they have 24 attacks and hit on 4+, for easy refference), they'll do 4 poisoned wounds and 9 hits (the death hag hits on 3+).
Thats 1.5 Killing blows on avarage, if you use the most optimistic approach.

Without a ranged attack and no protection from shooting or magic, they'll end up dead verry fast.
You might compensate for that with the rest of your army, but witches being frenzied doesn't help either.
I see a lot of easy victory points in that kind of unit.

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Thu Oct 09, 2008 8:10 pm
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Hmm... I think you forgot Hatred, One-S. ;)

9 Attacks from regular WE
6 Attacks from the Hag
7 Attacks from the Death Hag

15 x 4+ => 7.5 miss, 5 hit and 2.5 hit with Poison
7 x 3+ => 2.33 miss, 3.5 hit and 1.17 hit with Poison

Then Hatred...

7.5 x 4+ => 3.75 miss, 2.5 hit and 1.25 hit with Poison
2.33 x 3+ => 0.78 miss, 1.17 hit and 0.38 hit with Poison

Result...

12.17 hit and 5.2 hit with Poison

=> ~2 KBs on average from the 12.17 standard hits

Bye
Thanee


Thu Oct 09, 2008 8:45 pm
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I'd strongly advise you to use Banner of Murder. Against armoursave 2+ he now save on 3+ instead which give you twice as many wounds from non-KB.

So on average if you make 24 attacks hitting on 4+ all with S3 to make it easy:

Without Banner of Murder vs 2+ Armoursave you do 4 wounds

With Banner of Murder: You do 2 KB:s and 4 ordinary wounds = 6 wounds vs 2+ AS.


Thu Oct 09, 2008 9:05 pm
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Highborn
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@thanee - So in the BG's case you think the extra attack makes more of a difference then KB...I suppose with the 2+ knights that might make a lot of sense but you think you would choose that against 1+ knights also?


@champion re - Wow! I did not think that Banner of Murder would make that big of difference but your right! With banner of murder you could vaporize a 5 man h cav unit if it charged this unit. Given you roll average.

I think overall the BG are the better uber unit for reasons pointed out but man it owuld be fun to throw all those dice :D

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Anyone else find it kinda interesting that DE will not use gun powder because its unreliable but seem to have no problem using cold ones?


Thu Oct 09, 2008 10:24 pm
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Gut feeling would be that the extra attack is better against 2+, yes. Against 1+ I would probably take the KB, though.

And yeah, Banner of Murder is definitely a good choice for Witch Elves... armour is exactly what they do not like, so making it worse can only be good. ;)

Bye
Thanee


Thu Oct 09, 2008 10:33 pm
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Master of the Red Legion
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I've seen that unit in action before and I must say, I'm not impressed with it. I've even seen a nastier version of it - still not impressed. Both that unit and the BG unit of insanity have the fatal flaw of being expensive, T3 low armour units that are actually fairly easy to wipe out. I played a game the other day where my shooting (two units of RXBmen and a couple RBTs) did a real number on a unit of empire spearmen - and at least those guys get some sort of armour save.

Assuming you get close and I haven't shot at you yet, and lets say I get a unit of DR or shades in on this for 50 shots and I hit on 4s, that's 12 gone right there and then I have the RBTs which will claim another 5 or 6. Combine with either a couple of turns to shoot or some magic and that unit is little more than paste. By that time, a good opponent has rid himself of your screen of harpies, more than likely.

I like my shock units small, cheap, and duplicated in case something goes wrong. Adding in cool banners like the banner of murder for the witches is a great idea though and goes a long way to making what is otherwise a cheap unit, much more effective. Serious, how much better is your unit than a unit of 12 witches with a musician and champ which is only 135 pts plus any banner.

Quote:
I think overall the BG are the better uber unit for reasons pointed out but man it would be fun to throw all those dice


I get my fix for that using big wych units in 40K. ;) Those you can sometimes get into combat in turn 1. :twisted:

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Fri Oct 10, 2008 2:45 am
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Thanee wrote:
Hmm... I think you forgot Hatred, One-S. ;)
Bye
Thanee


Indeed, I did.
You've got to love it, hatred makes Dark elves so much better.

But that doesn't change my point of vieuw on the use o that unit.
It's going to get shot and cast to pieces and what's left will be charge baited.
It's a combat unit that won't perform if your opponent knows what he's doing.

A small, semingly harmless (don't know if that exists...) unit of witches is almost as dangerous and it won't attrack so much attention, wich makes it easier for them to get engaged.

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Fri Oct 10, 2008 4:34 am
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Highborn
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One-S wrote:
But that doesn't change my point of vieuw on the use o that unit.
It's going to get shot and cast to pieces and what's left will be charge baited.
It's a combat unit that won't perform if your opponent knows what he's doing.


I guess I don't worry much about shooting and casting because anything that can shoot and cast at the BG unit of doom is probably not going to give it an armor save so you pretty much have to screen them against gun lines and protect them from particularly nasty spells too.

One-S wrote:
A small, semingly harmless (don't know if that exists...) unit of witches is almost as dangerous and it won't attrack so much attention, wich makes it easier for them to get engaged.


True but it doesn't have ASF, doesn't have good static combat res, and is easier to render ineffective through shooting. Baiting I think is the biggest problem with WE but it might make for a nice surprise.

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Anyone else find it kinda interesting that DE will not use gun powder because its unreliable but seem to have no problem using cold ones?


Fri Oct 10, 2008 2:13 pm
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Stick with BG and ASF banner. They are 13 but with 2 S4 ASF attacks and Stubborn + ITP this is a formidable unit best used on pairs usually 2X15 one with Assassin the other with the banner.

Remember you get Stubborn and ITP for free with those guys while with witches you need to pay 200 pts! for CoB.

If you fight against demon legion/undead/wood elf or any other opponent based on fear or psycology effects BG are the optimal choice. They still are pricy but more effective and flexible than before add in a spearblock for ranks and you'll do well.

No witches in my army whatsoever... maybe sometime a couple of Exes' due to S6 but then again I prefer to take my chances with CoC/CoK.

All in all an impact army of BG/spearblocks/CO is a much better choice(Sure CO are stupid but tougher than their adversaries and cheaper 27pts for knight with fear and S6).

PS: there are no such things as ubber witch unit of doom... t3 no asv while not being formidable on the offensive S3 attacks summaries it pretty well.

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Sun Oct 12, 2008 1:00 pm
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^ Witches are immune to psychology without the aid of the cauldron, and witch brew is 25 points witch helps them.

And what makes you think a T3 5+ save unit is so much tougher than a no save unit? In my experience a 5+ armour save can be modified or eliminated entirely all too easily to ever be counted on.

I am also not sure why so many people think they are so hard to screen from shooting, especially since it also stops them from getting led around too. I have gotten into the habbit of screening all my valuable infantry blocks. Screening WE for two turns with harpies, is well worth it if it means a successful charge. Once they are in combat they will most likely annihilate any light to medium armoured foe, and the asf banner only serves to fortify their success in hth.

I tend to side with sipio here, but my unit would be 18 and 6 wide. Math may not be on my side, but with 27 potential attacks and ASF, KB, I would feel confident in getting more then 2 KB attacks in. Of course I don't think I would go out of my way to engage a unit of knights, but I probably wouldn't with a BG unit either, but I am sure the WE unit would beat a unit of 5 - 10 knights. And against fleshier targets this unit will easily out do any BG unit.


Sun Oct 12, 2008 4:01 pm
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dread_knight666 wrote:
^ Witches are immune to psychology without the aid of the cauldron, and witch brew is 25 points witch helps them.


You get Stubborn for free with BG that's why I mentioned the cob for witches. Secondly as regards ITP BG are better since they do not have frenzy and those 2 S4 WS5 I6 attacks are far better than puny S3. BG are a better unit in every situation compared to witches.

There are many debates over the whole site I won't continue to discuss about it since it reaches almost the limits of spamming!

The whole idea is that a unit of BG armed with asf banner and tower master either with RoH or CD is a much better choice and more cost effective than any combination of a witch unit of doom.

Watch the Druchii guys on competitive tournaments and I mean those that are successful and see if they favor Witches over BG.

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Single combat I await
My shadow brings them fear
The spikes upon my chariot
Will grind them when they're near...


Sun Oct 12, 2008 9:18 pm
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Quote:
You get Stubborn for free with BG that's why I mentioned the cob for witches. Secondly as regards ITP BG are better since they do not have frenzy and those 2 S4 WS5 I6 attacks are far better than puny S3. BG are a better unit in every situation compared to witches.


You appear to miss the point of witches... Stubborn is almost useless for them, since if they loose combat they are toast anyway. I have used witches many times and in the hands of a skilled player they are absolutely devastating. And what is wrong with frenzy? I like the extra attack and immune to psychology and it is so easy to prevent baiting with the DE list it isn't worth mentioning.

Also you appear to be stuck on the whole S3 thing. I am not sure if you noticed but almost everything in our list is S3, so by your rational everything except BG, COK and Exec's are "puny" and not worth taking.

And as for BG being better in every situation, that is complete nonsense. I can guarantee a unit of 6 WE(70) with a hag, will out perform a unit of 5 BG(79) with a tower master, against almost any lightly armoured foe. I can't beleive your going to sit their and tell me a BG unit with 11 attacks will do better than a WE unit with 19 attacks against say goblins, or most human infantry for example.

BG are fine and swell, but I suspect so many people like them because they play themselves and will hold their ground even in hot water. People dislike WE because it actually takes some smarts to get them into combat successfully, but once their in the rewards are great.


Mon Oct 13, 2008 3:41 pm
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Highborn
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ST 4 is all fine and well but against high T units like monsters and giants I would rather have WE. Poison is great, Another thing with WE is with the lower WS they re-roll more often meaning more chances to hit with poison ;)

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Anyone else find it kinda interesting that DE will not use gun powder because its unreliable but seem to have no problem using cold ones?


Mon Oct 13, 2008 5:17 pm
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^ A good point, I also wonder how well witches would do against high T monsters. Auto wounding suddenly becomes much more valuable against high T and with hatred and the sheer number of attacks, WE could probably do decent damage. Although a dragon or something else with a good save could probably resist the bulk of the wounds. Still against a giant, manticore or something comparable, I would imagine they would fare quite well.

WE may be ideal meat grinders, probably the best in our list, but with COB support they become even more versatile. The sheer volume of attacks gives them great potential against other targets, give them killing blow to dispatch armoured foes, or an extra attack to help take down monsters. They may not be perfectly suited to these tasks, but I think they can fair well, and at the least can fill an odd role in a pinch.

**EDIT**

Clearly I was mistaken on CD, I apologize. :oops:


Last edited by Dread_knight666 on Mon Oct 13, 2008 10:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Mon Oct 13, 2008 9:14 pm
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Rending Star
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Actually, clearly, ST6 is better than ST5 with AP. ;)

Bye
Thanee


Mon Oct 13, 2008 9:25 pm
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I think the performance of Witch Elves vs low toughness foes is a bit exaggerated in relation to Black Guard.

Some numbers, assuming 5 models in base contact with champions but no banners or COB.

---------

Vs WS2 T3 5+ armor save (Gobblin Spears + Shield)
WE: 5.83
BG: 5.43

Vs WS4 T3 5+ armor save (Elf Spears + Shield)
WE: 5.11
BG: 5.43

Vs WS5 T4 3+ armor save (Chaos Warriors)
WE: 2.07
BG: 2.06

Really tough stuff

Vs WS3 T5 no save (Giant)
WE: 5.09
BG: 3.26

Vs WS7 T5 1+ armor save 5+ ward save (Combat Vampire Lord)
WE: 0.53
BG: 0.31

---------

Assuming my numbers are correct, Witch Elves do better against targets with high toughness than Black Guard. Against most other things though its a wash.

The reasons are obvious, poison helps more against things that are difficult to wound than easy to wound. What Witch Elves give you is the potential to do more wounds since more attacks are thrown, but on average their hitting power is about the same as Black Guard.

Shelving the ability to wound for now, Black Guard are better than Witch Elves in my opinion for a few reasons. Keep in mind some of this depends on the context of your army:

They reroll to hit every round. Some people gloss over this, but its big in my opinion. You cannot count on breaking units on the first round of combat every time. Too many armies have unbreakable units for this to be a good way of doing things.

They don't need a BSB to get ASF. Again big because it frees up your BSB slot to do other things.

Their champion can take magic items. Once again very big in my eyes because it lets you do things like stick a Ring of Hotek in the center of your line without taking up a master's item points.

They have an armor save. Yes 5+ is easy to beat in close combat. That doesn't however mean its the same thing as having no armor. Not every single attack in the game is strength 5 or strength 4 armor penetrating. Longbows, Elf Spearmen, Witch Elves (: P).

Frenzy is double edged. Yes you can screen for your troops to prevent being led around. However if you're using Harpies and Dark Riders to screen for frenzy, you aren't using them for other things like hunting war machines.

Other stuff has already been discussed so I'll gloss over them. BG are ItP the whole game (again don't just assume you'll always win combat). BG are stubborn without needing to hug the COB.

Granted I'll agree Witch Elves can be better in some situations than Black Guard. What makes Black Guard so good though is they're good against more things, more often and in more common situations.


Tue Oct 14, 2008 9:03 am
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So I've just tried this doom unit: I planned to do this some times ago, but I needed to get some confidence with the cauldron. The unit was composed by 13 witches on 2 ranks with piercing banner, champion +D3, death hag with asf banner, manbane and +D3.

The unit didn't impress much, because in the end it could be really easy to avoid (I played vs Lizarmen with 2nd generation Slann). Problems for my opponent arose when he didn't expected that the death hag could jump into the executioners unit (14 full command and warbanner) that was beside the witches. That was a very nasty surprise and nothing that his saurus block could take muahahahahah.

Maybe the key is keep together this two units or just support your witches with another dangerous unit (as bg), gaining an impassable line. Then just throw them in front of enemy units and move the hag where she's needed, boost the cake with the cauldron and the game is over. If the enemy charges he's dead, if you charge... wait, it's the same!

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Tue Oct 14, 2008 11:28 pm
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Highborn
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Hag is definatley mobile and that gives you options. I suppose its best not to think of her as part of the unit of doom but a component that can fit else were as well.

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Anyone else find it kinda interesting that DE will not use gun powder because its unreliable but seem to have no problem using cold ones?


Wed Oct 15, 2008 3:21 am
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