What do you get when a bunch of psychic Xenos get together let by a couple of exceedingly big brained ones? An Eldar Seer Council of course. Infamous for their ability to totally control the Psychic Phase, the Seer Council is a formation that is able to take advantage of the mechanics of the Psychic Phase like none other. Be sure to check the Tactics Corner for more great articles!
To use this formation, you’ll have to pick up 2 Farseers, one of which can be Eldrad Ulthran. Additionally you must take a Warlock Conclave of at least 5 Warlocks. If you want one member of the formation to be on a jetbike, you’ll have to mount all members on them. This formation isn’t cheap by any means, but that’s the cost of doing business as they say. This formation can manifest 8 warp dice right off the bat in its smallest size. Though not quite the deathstar they once were, the Seer Council can still be a major threat to most armies.
- Psychic Bond, the Farseers must join the Conclave and cannot leave the unit.
- Path of the Seer, if this Formation is your primary detachment, i.e. your Warlord is a member of it, you may re-roll the Warlord Trait if rolling on the table from the Craftworld Codex.
- Psychic Might, when manifesting a psychic power, a 3+ will be a success instead of a 4+.
First things first, you should in my humble opinion always take the Seer Council as Skyrunners. Toughness 3 and being stuck moving as Infantry, albeit fast Infantry, is not an acceptable option for such an expensive unit. Jetbikes not only greatly increase the durability of the unit, but it helps them impact far more of the battlefield. The ability for Eldar jetbikes to redeploy is second to none, and when this unit is throwing out psychic powers while moving, turbo boosting, and jumping in the assault phase, you can easily make sure your fragile pointy eared witches and warlocks are safe from most returning firepower.
Being forced into staying together is a rough patch for this unit. Under the ITC they won’t be allowed to cast more than the highest mastery level in the unit. Three powers a turn isn’t bad, but when we’re dumping so many points into a unit that really has no other means of doing damage output beyond the Psychic Phase, this becomes a bit of a liability.
You should probably start your Warlocks on the Runes of Battle discipline table, roll until you get the powers you think you’ll need, and then with any remainders move onto Sanctic. You’ll be looking for Sanctuary and Cleansing Flame. If you get them, awesome; if not, it’s really not the end of the world. The two Farseers I think need to go on Divination and the other on Telepathy. These tables are quite simply the best in the game, and the ability for Farseers to cast powers reliably and relatively safer than any other psyker means that you’ll be casting powers nearly every time. Especially when you take into account the formation’s Psychic Might special rule.
Movement will be the name of the game to keep the Seer Council alive and kicking. Placing the unit in the right place will really allow you to cash in on the limited psychic powers you can cast. This also allows you to move the Seer Council away from threats like Imperial Knights, Wraithknights, Canoptek Wraiths, Grav Centurions with the Hunter’s Eye, and all the other nasty things out there nowadays. If you can maneuver your unit intelligently and stay away from the big scary things, then you’ll be able to use your psychic powers to either buff your units or do damage to your opponent.
Going for powers that keep this unit alive will be tempting, as its such an expensive investment, you’ll want to do everything in your power to help you get the most out of your investment. This is totally understandable and smart, but before you start dumping dice into Invisibility for your unit, make sure you take in the whole board. With your turbo-boost move and extra movement in the Assault Phase, do you need to spend one of your precious powers on your own unit that can easily redeploy to safety? If you plan on using the unit for an assault, then absolutely cast the power. If not though, throwing that power onto a nearby Wraithknight will do infinitely more for you than simply putting it onto the Council.
This unit can have some serious combat teeth depending on which powers get rolled up, and can actually be a great tool for mulit-assaulting a ton of light vehicles like a Gladius Strike Force. Smaller vulnerable units are great targets for the Seer Council, as they’ll be able to do enough damage with their Witchblades to really put the hurt on them, while still prevent the risk of falling in combat themselves. Hitting multiple targets at once is almost always the best choice, but be careful. If you bite off more than you can chew, you’ll be stuck in close combat without Hit and Run, while your opponent will be free to move about the table at their leisure.
Really, the Seer Council is just too expensive for what it gives you. The format of how psychic powers work in the ITC combined with the limits for which powers are available to the Warlocks means that its hard to really capitalize on the potential of this unit. The Warlocks all too often become reduced to nothing more than bodies to soak up wounds, something that can be done by Scatterbikes for cheaper.
Let us know your thoughts on the Seer Council in the comments section! And as always, Frontline Gaming sells Games Workshop product at up to 25% off, everyday!