Best typical frontage for a unit with the Cauldron of Blood?

How to beat those cowardly High Elves?

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Jabroniville
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Best typical frontage for a unit with the Cauldron of Blood?

Post by Jabroniville »

Typically, I put the CoB in a unit with a frontage of 5, making it 8 models wide. This seems to leave the unit with a not-too-big Footprint, and pretty deep ranks if I go with 25 (typical for Special) or 30 (Core- generally always Witch Elves). Given the death-rate of Elves, it seems that you'd lose too many models too quickly to make a Horde more worthwhile. How wide do the rest of you typically go?
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Re: Best typical frontage for a unit with the Cauldron of Bl

Post by Deadsun »

For starters I have only ever used the cauldron in a large (35)unit of witch elves.

When fielded on their own as a large block the witch elves are usually deployed 7 or 8 wide for the reasons you said, you want to hit hard, but not give too much away as well as combat res and be able to step up losses from shooting.
The addition of the cauldron however changes the unit it is in with some pretty neat passive bonuses. The first is the ward save. Which reduces the vulnerability of your witch elves. The second is improving the quality of their attacks with rerolling any failed wounds. This makes a horde formation feel a lit more worth while with this unit for me.
The biggest disadvantage I encounter (this can also be a strength if you are prepared for it) is the fact a WE horde with cauldron puts out so much threat to an enemy that it will be avoided and shot at pretty mercilessly and you need to make the rest of your army work to get it to hit where you want it. Footprint can be an issue for movement and deployment but you can prepare for this, like wise it is possible to shut down the frenzy bating at least for the first few turns pretty effectively.
One issue i do find with the cauldron being in a horde is that the number of other units within range for the frenzy spell are reduced limiting options, but then again if you have gone horde then you most likely want to boost the host unit.
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Calisson
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Re: Best typical frontage for a unit with the Cauldron of Bl

Post by Calisson »

Six-wheel chariots inside units induce three typical frontage:
- defensive = 5 wide (chariot +2). It allows the command group to push to 2nd rank vulnerable characters such as BSB or magic-user. Provides SCR and steadfast.
- offensive = as wide as the opponent + 2 (including 3 for the chariot). It maximizes the number of models in contact, which is usually good as each model is deadly. It keeps as many ranks as useful. Note that if you take the offensive stance, it means that it is better to sacrifice a rank and to have more models in contact. If your concern is to keep some SCR, then better use the 5 wide defensive frontage.
- horde = 10 wide (chariot + 7). It increases slightly the number of models which can hit.
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Jabroniville
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Re: Best typical frontage for a unit with the Cauldron of Bl

Post by Jabroniville »

Cool stuff, thanks! So I typically use the "offensive" version. I find Hordes difficult to use and justify, especially if the opponent isn't Hording (and most of mine do so only sparingly). And I would consider going over 30 for the Witch Elves, but... it feels so risky. Adding their cost into the CoB/Death Hag's really makes it a game-loser if the thing gets run down and dies. That you can't really Crown of Command it properly makes it even worse, and they're pretty fragile to put the "makes you Unbreakable" banner in it and leave the Hag as a BSB.
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Re: Best typical frontage for a unit with the Cauldron of Bl

Post by Calisson »

With the offensive set up, your optimal setting is when you maximize the frontage in contact, no more, no less.
If your likely opponent's frontage is 5 infantry, then anything wider than 7 is a waste, you'd better reduce your frontage from 8 to 7.
If your likely opponent's frontage is 10 infantry, then you'd better go 12 wide (and get horde bonus if applicable).
Adjust for monstrous infantry and cavalry.
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direweasel
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Re: Best typical frontage for a unit with the Cauldron of Bl

Post by direweasel »

I do the horde, 24 witches plus the cauldron, 4 witches on each side of the cauldron, 3 rows back. It is accurate to say that shooting usually prevents the 3rd rank from contributing to combat. But it does force the opponent to concentrate fire on it, I think from a psychological standpoint more than anything. And they have a fat juicy ward save, so I'm fine with my opponent shooting at them and not more squishy stuff. There are always still enough to win combats when I get there.

I will be taking this exact formation to a tourney tomorrow, I'll tell you how it turns out.
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Jabroniville
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Re: Best typical frontage for a unit with the Cauldron of Bl

Post by Jabroniville »

The only thing that bothers me is that I want to base the unit properly (I have many bases already that are JUST a bit too small, resulting in an ugly-looking unit where the WE are kind of leaning funny or falling onto the CoB's base), and needing multiple kinds of facings is totally ruining that :).
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Re: Best typical frontage for a unit with the Cauldron of Bl

Post by direweasel »

I won my tourney, but it was only two rounds, because we only had 3 people show up. But I did win both games, and in both cases, my witch elves were instrumental in the victory.

I was actually even able to get my horde attacks in against dwarves, on two seperate combats. He brought one organ gun and one cannon, but I was able to keep them from shooting at the witches with my chaff (I had shades threatening them on one side, and dark riders on the other before I killed both war machines). The witch elves got a flank charge on a unit of longbeards, and overran from there into a flank charge with a unit of ironbreakers, which my black guard had held up for a turn by allowing themselves to be charged in the front. It was glorious. :)

Needless to say, today's events has only reinforced my faith in my witch horde. :)
Chinese Relativity Axiom: No matter how glorious your triumphs, nor how miserable your failures, there will always be at least one billion people in China who don't give a damn.

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tmr
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Re: Best typical frontage for a unit with the Cauldron of Bl

Post by tmr »

Has anyone tried using the CoB with executioners and how did it go?
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Calisson
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Re: Best typical frontage for a unit with the Cauldron of Bl

Post by Calisson »

Ho! TMR returns? Welcome back, old mate!
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Re: Best typical frontage for a unit with the Cauldron of Bl

Post by tmr »

indeed - took two years off and played VC... now I'm back with a vengeance. Good to see you're still around. I need to get caught up on all things DE. -tom
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Jvh792
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Re: Best typical frontage for a unit with the Cauldron of Bl

Post by Jvh792 »

I play my witches and cauldron 10 wide, 5 deep. I have never had a problem with them losing combats. They've been flank charged by a frost chicken, and killed the frickin thing before it got a chance to blink. They've been charged on 3 sides, and smashed through everything. The only problem I've had with them is that they have a wide footprint, but with careful deployment, they do fine.
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Re: Best typical frontage for a unit with the Cauldron of Bl

Post by Kerupto »

HORDE
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