We’ve got the book, muahaha!
Well, the Dark Eldar are here. This post is just off the cuff, first impressions. This is not a comprehensive review, that will come soon.
Their book is gorgeous, fist of all. The art inside and on the cover are just fantastic. GW has really stepped up their game in that regard.
As for the rules, their are some things to be really sad about and there are some things to be really excited about. For one, just let it be said right away that Dark Eldar will be very competitive. They have some builds that will be quite good. Eldar good? Eh, maybe not, but then, who is? This is though, a solid book with what jump out at me as multiple, viable builds.
- The Warlord traits are garbage. Roll on Strategic like pretty much everyone else. Move along.
- Power from Pain got simplified, but, got generally worse on a per unit basis but when considering that it is army wide, is pretty solid. Some of the benefits will not kick in till late game when you really want them on turn 2, such as Furious Charge. Fearless on turn 5 is awesome though, for holding objectives to the bitter end!
- The Relics are largely junk, with a few that can be awesome on occasion. The Helm of Spite is pretty rad though, giving all Deldar units within 12″ Adamantium Will, and enemy Psykers within 12″ suffer Perils on any doubles!
- Vehicles generally got worse in the terms that they have more expensive or worse upgrades than they did, but, this is offset by the ability to take TONS of them. For example, in the Realspace Raider’s Detachment, you can take 6 Venoms by themselves which is absolutely brutal, or 14 total as transports, too! Razorwing Spam in this Detachment will be devastating too, which we will get to.
- Grenades…or the lack thereof. So, you know how awesome Genestealers and Warp Talons are in this edition and how often you see them on the tabletop? Yeah. That is pretty much the entire Dark Eldar army. I have absolutely no clue–none–who in the design studio thinks it’s cool to have expensive, low toughness, low armor save models that need to strike first to function as an assault unit go into battle without offensive grenades. It just utterly hamstrings a lot of units. Incubi, Hellions, etc. are all fragile and when assaulting into cover will get slaughtered before they even swing. It’s really bad and unless I missed something, there is no way to get them around this.
- Webway Portals. Holy shit! These are incredible. They allow the model with it to Deepstrike from reserves with their unit and any transport which allows for some utterly insane combos. Wraithguard? Fire Dragons? 20 Warriors or Guardians? Let your mind go crazy with that. Deepstriking with no scatter on a unit that can just devastate the opponent is brutal.
- Units of MCs. All of a sudden, the lackluster Talos and Cronos got better. Everything counts in large amounts!
- The Dark Eldar detachment is excellent. It allows for some very powerful builds. As mentioned above, 6 Venoms would be brutal. But, 6 Razorwings would be crazy good, too. Deldar have a lot of power in the Fast Attack slots and being able to take 6 is really good, plus would make for a fun army to play with all of that speed.
Units that got a boost:
- Succubus, Court of the Archon, Lelith, Drazhar, Warriors, Mandrakes, Grotesques, Reavers, the Razorwing, Scourges, the Talos and the Cronos all got anywhere from a small to a significant boost. These units will be seen on the table quite a bit, IMO.
Units that got a swift kick to the junk:
- Archon, Urien, Wyches, Incubi, Wracks, Beastpacks (they are still good, but not what they were), Hellions (would be great but they don’t have grenades, doh!), Ravager (still good, just more expensive with less upgrades).
Units that will need some testing to tell:
- Voidraven (so bloody expensive for what you get! Razorwing is much better, IMO), Raiders, Venoms (both of these can now transport Eldar units, too, when allied in which opens up so many doors), Haemonculus.
So again, this is just off the cuff. We are excited from some of the combos and new builds, but, some units just got left out in the cold in a big way. Wyches…wow, Chaos Space Marines have been dethroned as the worst troop in the game! And Archons not having any AP2 melee weapons is just silly.
Time will tell, but all of us here have been quite excited about some of the possibilities. I think that Deldar players may be upset in the short term, but good builds will emerge.
What are you all thinking about the Dark Eldar so far?