Friday, September 2, 2011

Something a bit different for Homecon

So I'm heading back home next week, which happens to nicely coincide with the Homecon tournament being run by Dad (It's funny how the dates always seem to line up nicely!). Wanting to have a change and a bit of a laugh, I decided to use the Empire that have been sat on the shelf ever since Dad bought them a year or two ago.

Now, I don't pretend to be any sort of an expert with the army in the slightest, but after a bit of prowling the net mixed with theory-hammer, I've come up with the following list, which is open to all constructive criticism, as I would love to improve it, being the empire noob that I am!

Arch Lector of Sigmar, War Altar,Sword of Fate,Armor of Meteoric Iron,Van Horstman's Speculum
Wizard Lord ,Level 4, Luckstone, Shadow

Master Engineer
Captain (BSB), Full Plate Armor
Battle Wizard, Light, Seal of Destruction
Captain of the Empire, Full Plate Armor, Shield, Pegasus, Sword of Might, Dragonhelm, Dawnstone

30 Flagellants, Champ
40 Halberdiers, FC
Detachment - 5 Swordsmen
Detachment - 5 Archers
10 Crossbowmen, Banner
Detachment - 5 Archers
12 Swordsmen, Banner

Great Cannon
Great Cannon

Steam Tank
Helstorm Rocket Battery

Any and all thoughts welcome. Pictures will certainly be taken over the weekend as well, and I will let you all know how much I failed at using the army!


  1. Your list is not compliant with Pete-Lite comp.

    You have 4 warmachines, but 5 templates as the Stank has a cannon AND a steam gun.

    Other than that the list is a little too reliant on the stank and walter to hold stuff up for the counter charge. No Hatred in the halberds means that the shadow hexes and 1 unit only bound light buffs will be obvious and easily shut down-esp as cant guarantee the useful Aoeffect light spells on the lvl2 (who I suspect is just there to give s5 banishment + hold scroll??). The Walter bounds are great for banishment and Net of Amyotok (spelling fail), but the casting cost is very 7th and can hamper your magic phase in 8th as need 2 dice + no area of affect = dumb and easy to see coming.

    Shadow + Empire works really well when the tactic is to gunline + push stank and walter into anything your troops cannot handle. Wither + mortar = pain.

    Also be prepared to leak points to scouts and artillery hunters! 385 points in artillery + engineer is a lot of points. At least give the 12 Swords a musician to be able to swift reform and act as an artillery protection unit.

    Not my style of play, but keep it conservative and there is too not much that can go wrong.

  2. Looks pretty damn bog standard for an 8th Empire army, Jack, so I can't really say much.

    I personally think it needs more pigeon bombs though :D

  3. Thanks for the thoughts Joel. I think you really hit the nail on the head in the last line - we see and play the game in different ways.

    First off, the template/warmachine issue has been cleared up and I'm good to go. I'll let Dad explain why, but I suspect it's some combination of ambiguity in the comp rules, cannons only being a funny type of template, and of course genetic preference giving me the home ground advantage ;)

    I agree about relying a bit on the altar and the tank especially for tarpitting, but completely disagree on the magic. Yes the magic buffs and hexes will be obvious, but how is the opponent going to stop the light bound and all of the shadow spells at the same time?

    The level 1 is there like you say to hold the scroll, and also to give a burning gaze for the early turns of the game. The biggest disadvantage to shadow is the early turns having not much impact magic-wise, but this should help alleviate this.

    The other thing going off in the early turns is the lots-of-dice war altar bound (probably banishment), because IIRC there's no miscast downside? At 2 dice, the altar bound is boring and predictable, but being able to throw 5-6 dice at it without fear seems pretty potent.

    I was originally considering some knights to control the space in front of the war machines, but ended up picking the pegasus instead. If needed, he should be able to perform this role. Of course, if the situation warrants it, the warmachines don't need to be put together anyway. It might be worth splitting them up in order to preserve points at the expense of them all having the engineer's buff.

    The swordsmen should have a muso, that will be fixed pronto! Oversight on my part completely.

    I know this might come off as dismissive of your opinions, but like I said I think it's down to us seeing the game differently. I wouldn't claim for a second to know more about empire than you!! Quite the opposite in fact :) I do appreciate the chance for discussion too

  4. Reading through the rulebook the cannon is not listed as a template but under the description of cannon shooting it mentions that it behaves a one figure wide one.

    I'm inclined to count it as a war machine but not a template weapon. The restriction on templates was designed to catch the more traditional template weapons - including the WLC.

    In future iterations of Pete Lite I'll be more explicit on the wording e.g. No more than four models that use the Large Blast, Small Blast and Flamer templates for determining hits

  5. Im a fan of greatswords with a WP for hatred. And as said mortars with a lvl4 shadow is a great combo. I would replace the stank with mortars and greatswords.

  6. Why change it? Force the Empire players to make harder decisions - 2 Cannons, Helstorm AND Steam Tank (with an Engineer!)?

    If you count the Steam Tank as two templates the selection gets at least a little more considered.

  7. Not changing the rule Dave, just making the wording more explicit as it is causing confusion.

    The restraint is the same:

    Max 4 war machines
    Max 4 templates

    The other wording I need to include is 2:1 choices - high elves and dark elves

  8. Again IMO, the reason it's not a problem is that the comp just aims to take the edge off of the power builds. On the whole, armies built to the limits of these restrictions are still very strong, just without the little things that push them over top (in this case probably the third cannon or a couple of mortars).

    You have to remember that under the comp, with Dark Elves since I know them well, you can take 2x10 shades along with 2 units of black guard backed up by a level 4 shadow with dagger and a cauldron, which is incredibly powerful. I think that 2 Cannons, Helstorm and Steam Tank fits into this power level just fine.

    Of course, it would be a good idea to limit it further as part of reducing the power level across the whole tournament, if that's what you wanted to do.

  9. Empire with the new exception can now field:

    2 cannons
    Rocket battery
    2 engineers with Pigeon bombs

    Back that up with shadow lvl4, w/alter and a w.priest to get re-roll to hit on the pigeon bombs (super nasty place anywhere you want on a 5+ s4 small partials FTW)....oh and + 3 dispel dice as a nice aside...and a scroll that removes a spell (suddenly the Dwarfs are re-writing their grudge list).

    I always assumed the template restriction was to stop this (and as an aside encourage interesting Empire lists instead of pie templates + unbreakable units).

  10. @Joel - it's not a new exception. The rule around templates was never designed to pick up cannons - that restriction was via war machines.

    The template restriction was more aimed at Skaven As they can go mad on them.

  11. IMO, why are you differentiating the two? A cannon is a 'Special Template' (BRB)

    When it hits something it acts exactly like a template.

    I dont think it really hurts Empire/Dwarf Players that much if it does count as a template weapon anyways

    Just my 2c

    Im fine to play it though

  12. “Only 4 models that have a template weapon (as per the BRB, cannons are template weapons).”

    Hopefully that satisfies all. :-)

  13. Jack, Shadow Magic vs. Light Magic Spam, discuss..

    I can certainly see the benefits of shadow, and saw it a lot at ETC, but light spam looks to benefit the army a lot more. Your basic empire troop is either going to be a halberdier or flagellant (units du jour in 8th). All they need is WS and Init boosts which Light provides. Lowering S/T is nice, but not necessary if you're able to pop up the Speed/Pha's combo. And I know all about mindrazor-ing ftw, but I feel like high S banishments and cannons can do the job just as well. Also, having so many magic missiles around means you don't have to take missile units, eliminating a weak spot in the line.


    *Just as context, since returning from Switzerland, I'm giving serious thought to putting together an empire list (something I feel we could have done with, serious daemon busting potential) and the shadow/light choice is tough. I wouldn't run a stank since I feel it needs life to work most effectively, but certainly want to try it.

  14. @DDevil. THis is my approach to empire...if I can get MC Hammer going, my hatred halberds will walk over everything and the flags wont even stop to see what the bump in the road was.

    Stank though works really well with light. It is that "thing" that doesnt need the buffs, but if by chance it gets caught in the AOE ASF double movement, a 30 inch stank charge can be very scary!

    With life the problem is that you generate steam points at beginning of movement, but dont heal until magic phase = always playing catch up. Also the stank's role is really to be super annoying and unkillable (t10, 10 wounds 1+As tends to do that!), not a combat machine. It holds up the unit, Flagellants smash it into the ground.

    Shadow + Empire is for the nuln freaks. slower movement + wither + mortars = win. Works best when can field 3xmortars, 2cannon, Rbattery and a couple of pigeon bomb engineers to ensure the artillery doesnt blow often. Great Swords are the other unit that benefit most from lore of shadow....and they work really well in nuln "themed" lists. A block of 40 with hatred and you have a sturdy unit to clean up what gets past the artillery.

    This list though has only 2 combat units that are not nerfed by steadfast, so the shadow lore will be useful to make sure the shooting does enough of an impact + slowing movement will make the 3 suicide squads just that much more effective.

    Jack, I know its only 6 points, but why suicide swordsmen not free company? I've found that 5 free company can take on fast calv etc (10 attacks is great!, so get a bit of role versatility.

  15. I think Shadow offers much more decisive spells than light in general. When we are talking units of 30-40 fighting, winning the combat is not the only goal, you need to be killing off a large amount of the enemy at the same time. I feel spells like withering and mindrazor achieve this better than pha's, speed of light, and to an extent timewarp, which don't tip the balance as much. If you want to hit on 3's or reduce the enemy to hiiting 5's, miasma can largely achieve the same effect.

    Shadow also gives you pit if you need it, which can be very useful obviously.

    The key tipping factor towards shadow for me was the altar having all the light spells anyway. I can now throw out a timewarp on 2 dice, backed up by 2-3 shadow spells all at once, which seems better than just light spells.

    Like I said, the Level 1 just adds another burning gaze, to help with ranged attacks. There's probably a case to be made for taking another one, perhaps with the rod of power?

    In short, shadow seems more decisive, which is good in a block grindfest

  16. @Joel: The swordsmen are there purely based on the models I have available ;)

    That's how I see the tank too. Get it in the way, and either hold a unit up and take it out of the game, or set it up for a decisive countercharge