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Getting back into the Aeldari for Wargaming


Kage2020

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Hey, all. I'm new-ish and returning to the hobby after a couple of breaks. The first was from wargaming with Warhammer back in the late '80s/early '90s, and then the second was from the setting in the mid-to-late '00s from the perspective of TTRPGs.

 

I'm back now with the hopes of intriguing my 10-year old son that there is something outside of screens that is both creative and fun. In the traditional way of parents, this is digging up an old hobby, telling their child it's fun and---dang'nab'it!---they're going to like it. ;)

 

Alas, all my GW minis from old were consigned to a dumpster when I emigrated from the UK. (I'm still a little bit thorny about Slaves to Darkness and The Lost and the Damned books sharing the same fate...) 

 

Now I've got (for my son, understand): 

 

  • Craftworld Starter set; 
  • Triumvirate of Ynnead (shiny! new to me!); 
  • Harlequin Troupe; and 
  • Primaris Marines (really for my son; pesky tin cans).

 

First I'm trying to get back into painting minis, so I've got a 3d resin printer, a handful of proxy Eldar for practise ("Arcadian Elves"---such very cool sculpts). Advice is welcome, especially with colour schemes because in catching up with some of the background I realise that things have changed and there are some new players in town. Here, though, I'll just be having fun and relaxing with painting cool minis that I find, print, or buy.

 

Second, I do want to get back into the wargame.

 

In either case, advise is welcome!

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I quite enjoy painting Aspect Warriors in the traditional shrine colours as you never get bored. Each squad is something different and exciting. GW are currently working through the Aspect Warriors to redo them in plastic so you might want to hold off the metal/resin ones unless you have a particular desire for a specific aspect.

 

Eldar are currently pretty close to top tier (although the recent balance dataslate has toned them down a bit). The Avatar, Yncarne and Wraith units are pretty meta at the moment.

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I really don't understand the quote system on this forum at the moment, so forgive the glitches.

 

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I quite enjoy painting Aspect Warriors in the traditional shrine colours as you never get bored. Each squad is something different and exciting. 

 

I've got a feeling that I'm going to be collecting/painting all the different, ah, types of Aeldari (gonna take a while getting used to typing that!), but when I was checking through the standard Craftworlds (and trying to updated with the new ones) I either couldn't find the colour schemes or wasn't particularly inspired. 

 

Is there an easy resource that summarises the colour schemes of all the official Craftworlds?

 

(I'm perhaps stupidly a Warhammer+ member so that I could get updated on the background changes since I was last involved, so if there is a resource on there that would otherwise be behind the paywall, let me know. I might as well use that resource for something other than slowly reading through Gathering Storms.)

 

Of course, it wouldn't be me if I weren't thinking about a custom Craftworld where I could bring my own background interpretation in there. Are there any guidelines on this, especially when it comes to making sure that they're not just Mary Sue?

 

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GW are currently working through the Aspect Warriors to redo them in plastic so you might want to hold off the metal/resin ones unless you have a particular desire for a specific aspect.

 

Good to know. 

 

I think that I've got plenty of official GW models to get to once I've got my painting skills up to snuff (it has been 30+ years since I last painted!). Plus, I want to settle on a standard Craftworld or get my own developed a bit more. Thus, for the moment, I'm happy painting the 3d-printed minis that I think are either cooler than GW sculpts, or are close enough that I can cut my teeth on them. (My current favourite---the Void Reaper.)

 

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Eldar are currently pretty close to top tier (although the recent balance dataslate has toned them down a bit). The Avatar, Yncarne and Wraith units are pretty meta at the moment.

 

I know what all the words mean, but without knowing the rules or having a deeper understanding of the game at the moment, I shall just thank you, nod my head, and go "Awesome!". 

Edited by Kage2020
Wanted to clarify the WH+ membership if someone wanted to link me to painting/colour guides or something.
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Lexicanum is my usual one stop shop for lore and information about anything in the 40k universe: https://wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/Craftworld

 

There's a list of all the major craftworlds and their pages all have their colour schemes on them. You're probably best google imaging the individual craftworlds, though, because there are some great interpretations of craftworld colours out there to inspire you, and lots of step by step tutorials, too.

 

There have been a couple of big lore events for Eldar in the last ten years - the fracture of Biel Tan and the rise of Ynnead - but otherwise, the lore has remained pretty unchanged since 2nd edition. Eldar unfortunately don't really get much focus in lore, except as facilitators for other factions to have a story. Case in point being how they helped bring Guilliman back. Even the Ynnead story is kind of in limbo at the moment.

 

Oh and Craftworld Mymeara was rediscovered and a new aspect shrine uncovered (Shadow Spectres), so there's that, too. I really like the Mymeara colour scheme. That's all detailed in the Doom of Mymeara supplement.

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Lexicanum is my usual one stop shop for lore and information about anything in the 40k universe: https://wh40k.lexicanum.com/wiki/Craftworld

 

 

It seems to have come on since when I was last "in the hobby", so thanks for the reference. I had found several of the pages, but having the root page for the subject is useful. Thank you.

 

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You're probably best google imaging the individual craftworlds, though, because there are some great interpretations of craftworld colours out there to inspire you, and lots of step by step tutorials, too.

 

The other day I was going down the rabbit warren that is YouTube mini painting and I was reminded that the good colour schemes are associated with the not-great Craftworlds, or they're too bright and airy. The notion of a "grimdark" paint scheme kind of appeals. :)

 

Quote

There have been a couple of big lore events for Eldar in the last ten years - the fracture of Biel Tan and the rise of Ynnead - but otherwise, the lore has remained pretty unchanged since 2nd edition. Eldar unfortunately don't really get much focus in lore, except as facilitators for other factions to have a story. Case in point being how they helped bring Guilliman back. Even the Ynnead story is kind of in limbo at the moment.

 

Well, that's great. It seems that I'm all caught up on the majority of interesting background materials. Cool.

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9 hours ago, Kage2020 said:

The other day I was going down the rabbit warren that is YouTube mini painting and I was reminded that the good colour schemes are associated with the not-great Craftworlds, or they're too bright and airy. The notion of a "grimdark" paint scheme kind of appeals. :)

 

A good thing that GW have made clear in 10th edition is that colour scheme does not define the rules. For example, Space Marines painted as Ultramarines can use any of the Detachment rules traditionally associated with any of the other Chapters. The current detachment rules represent as style that is associated with a particular sub-faction but is not exclusive to it.

 

Eldar don't have our 10th edition Codex yet but the good news is that you can choose a colour scheme that appeals to you without worrying about locking yourself into a particular ruleset later on.

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8 hours ago, Karhedron said:

A good thing that GW have made clear in 10th edition is that colour scheme does not define the rules. For example, Space Marines painted as Ultramarines can use any of the Detachment rules traditionally associated with any of the other Chapters. The current detachment rules represent as style that is associated with a particular sub-faction but is not exclusive to it.

 

Wait. Wasn't there a rule (recently?) that said that the unit/mini had to have the correct weaponry for it to be "legal"? Seems a bit strange to have them painted in the "wrong" colours if so.

 

8 hours ago, Karhedron said:

Eldar don't have our 10th edition Codex yet but the good news is that you can choose a colour scheme that appeals to you without worrying about locking yourself into a particular ruleset later on.

 

With that said, this is good to know. :)

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Can someone speak to me as if I'm a noob (it's not going to be hard; I am in all things but the background) and break down what playing an Eldar army is like now?

 

The last time that I played Eldar was around WD 127 where I could do sneaky things like use D-cannons on anti-grab platforms with Warlocks to double range/auto hit, which could wipe out huge swathes of armour. I'm guessing that this bug would have subsequently been fixed. 

 

But what am I looking at based on your expertise?

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Eldar are a fairly elite army which means we tend to have lower model count that armies like Imperial Guard or Nids. Our cheapest Infantry units are Guardians and even they cost around 10 points per model so are never going to be a horde army.

 

Eldar are characterised by being fast and deadly but fragile. Most of our infantry is T3 with 1 wound and a 4+ or 3+ save so will never win a battle of attrition against Marines or a battle of numbers against Guard. Our tanks are T9 while most other races MBTs are T10+. The main exception to this are our Wraith units (Wraithguard, Wraithblades, Wraithlords and Wraithknights). These are typically tougher than equivalents in other armies. Wraithguard are tougher than Terminators while Wraithlords are tougher than Dreadnoughts. I like to include a couple of Wraith units in most lists to act as anchors for my army. These units can take Objectives and hold them in the face of pretty tough opposition.

 

Eldar are faster than most armies and several units have rules that allow extra movement in some situations. We also have a Stratagem which allows us to move a unit after shooting which allows some "fire and fade" style tricks. Jetbikes are plain fast while Swooping Hawks and Warp Spiders have movement tricks. Swooping Hawks in particular are great for hopping around and stealing Objectives.

 

Eldar hit hard and accurately. The Fire Prism is one of the best tank hunters in the game for its points. The Falcon has decent firepower and boost the killing power of the units it carries. Wave Serpents are another durable unit and can be used to move big blobs of infantry at speed if required. The key to our killing power is our Detachment rule UNPARALLELED FORESIGHT which allows every unit to reroll 1 to-Hit dice and 1 to-Wound dice each time it attacks. This makes our high-powered but few in number attacks extremely accurate. Certain units like the Fire Prism also get their own rerolls making them even more reliable. Lastly we have our faction ability which allows us to roll a number of Fate Dice at the start of the game (normally 6). We can also generate more as the game progresses. Once per phase, we can choose to use a Fate Dice instead of making a roll. This allows us to ensure that we can eliminate unlucky rolls when we really need to or guarantee a high value result when it really counts. A good example was a recent game against Daemons. I fired several Brightlance shots at a Lord of Change but only 1 managed to get through its invulnerable saves. A Brightlance normally does D6+2 damage however I used a Fate Dice to guarantee a 6 meaning that my single attack scored its maximum of 8 wounds.

 

 

So what might you want in a typical Eldar army? You normally want some big guns to take out big targets and make the most of our dice rerolls. Fire Prisms, Warwalkers with Brightlances, Wraithlords with Brightlances all work well as the small number of high powered attacks make best use of your rerolls.

 

Next you want some units to take and hold Objectives. They can either be tough like Wraith units or can have movement tricks to sneak onto unguarded Objectives like Swooping Hawks or Warp Spiders. Guardian Defenders are a mediocre unit but generate an extra Fate Dice each turn they are holding an Objective which is worth considering. They also make a good bodyguard unit for Farseers who can allow you to spend any Fate Dice as if it was a 6 within 12". I sometimes run them as a backfield Objective camping unit.

 

Next it is worth looking at some of our big hammer units if you need to kick tough enemy of centre Objectives. The Avatar of Khaine is a big beast with a great new model that is quite able to to go toe-to-toe with Greater Daemons, Primarchs and other serious monsters, particularly when you start using Fate Dice on him to ensure his survival. The Ynacrne is not quite as tough or hard hitting (although still reasonably scary) but has a serious movement trick in that once per turn, it can redeploy to the location of a unit that has just been destroyed. This allows it to pop up like a deadly jack-in-the-box and attack units your opponent thought was safe.

 

Lastly we have an interesting selection of Characters available. While we do not have many who are powerhouses, we do have lost with interesting rules. Autarchs of all flavours generate an extra Command Point in each of our turns which allow us to power extra Stratagems. The Autarch Wayleaper is the most popular version as he has a jump pack and the "Lone Operative" ability which means enemies cannot shoot him from outside 12". The Death Jester and Illic Nighspear are both sniper Characters who also have Lone Operative allowing them to seriously harass enemy units with little fear of reprisal. The Death Jester works well with the Fates Messenger Enhancement to change one to-Hit dice per turn into a 6 as he has several special abilities that trigger on a 6. Eldrad Ulthran provides your army with an extra 3 Fate Dice which is always handy and he is no longer restricted to Ulthwé only. Lastly the Phoenix Lord Fuegen is popular as he has a massively powerful meltagun that can destroy anything up a Predator in one shot. He also has the ability to come back from the dead on a 2+ the first time he is killed.

 

That is a big wall of text but it is a good starting point to some of the more popular units in the Eldar index.

 

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Welcome back! Aldari are an interesting choice.  Bit of an unpopular army made more so by years of poorly balanced rules and win at all cost players.  Generally defined in the modern era as a "glass cannon" faction the elves have a big model range that supports most styles of play.  

 

Paint them how you like.  The rules don't support individual craft world's being pidgeon holed to one rules set so just follow your heart. The army building rules are also quite loose right now. 

 

Best way to get back into gaming is to go play some games!  Good luck and have fun

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11 hours ago, Karhedron said:

That is a big wall of text but it is a good starting point to some of the more popular units in the Eldar index.

 

I fear no walls of text!

 

(Which is to say, I want to make a more substantive reply but will have to get back to it after I've done all the family chores that I need to do that seem to have snuck up on me. O.o )

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On 2/11/2024 at 6:03 AM, Karhedron said:

Our tanks are T9 while most other races MBTs are T10+.

 

I think that my memory might be playing games with me. Working from memory---and I'm getting old so it might not be working that well---there was something called a "wave serpent" (or similar) whose purpose was to act as the Eldar equivalent of a Land Raider or Rhino. It didn't really have powerful weapons (no teeth), but it had a distortion field that was invulnerable. I'm presuming that this is no longer a thing?

 

(I can see why, but it's kind of a shame as it reinforced the the Eldar were at least once a force to be reckoned with even if they might have 'lost' much of their military technology---if you believe that kind of thing.)

 

 

On 2/11/2024 at 6:03 AM, Karhedron said:

We also have a Stratagem which allows us to move a unit after shooting which allows some "fire and fade" style tricks.

 

That makes a lot of sense. I like that.

 

On 2/11/2024 at 6:03 AM, Karhedron said:

The key to our killing power is our Detachment rule UNPARALLELED FORESIGHT which allows every unit to reroll 1 to-Hit dice and 1 to-Wound dice each time it attacks. This makes our high-powered but few in number attacks extremely accurate. Certain units like the Fire Prism also get their own rerolls making them even more reliable.

 

Okay, I forget the name but that does sound like a more tempered rule that I remembered which gave me the ability to use a Warlock to double the distance and auto hit (which was devastating with the original D-cannons that would just remove vehicles even while using the---then---new vehicle rules with random targeting).

 

On 2/11/2024 at 6:03 AM, Karhedron said:

The Avatar of Khaine is a big beast with a great new model that is quite able to to go toe-to-toe with Greater Daemons, Primarchs and other serious monsters, particularly when you start using Fate Dice on him to ensure his survival

 

Yeah, he's always been a beast. I really wish that I had gotten the Forge World model and I'm going to have to give some serious thought whether I want to pay the current price of $83 for that model or just source or another one (I've identified two). It sure is pretty though (if not FW model pretty).

 

Darn. It's so pretty. I'm strangely reminded of scene from Bug's Life

 

"Marv! Don't look at the light." 

"But it's so beautiful..." <bzzzzt> (bug zapper) :D

 

On 2/11/2024 at 6:03 AM, Karhedron said:

The Ynacrne is not quite as tough or hard hitting (although still reasonably scary) but has a serious movement trick in that once per turn, it can redeploy to the location of a unit that has just been destroyed. This allows it to pop up like a deadly jack-in-the-box and attack units your opponent thought was safe.

 

Although GW selected perhaps one of the least interesting solutions to Ynnead---no surprise there---I do find myself drawn to the Ynnari in general. If nothing else from the perspective of having interesting models to paint. :)

 

  

On 2/11/2024 at 6:03 AM, Karhedron said:

The Autarch Wayleaper

 

For background purposes, I've got some notions of where I would want this to go (thematically speaking). Specifically, I like to view a lot of things with the Eldar to revolve around the premise of the Trinity. You get hints of this in the background materials with reference to things like "Maiden Worlds" and Isha, Morai-Heg and "Croneworlds" etc. I do the same thing with Seer runes, basing them on the Elder Futhark ('eldar futhark') which is split into three aettir of Past, Present, and Future. And, of course, the governance of the Craftworld is, for me, split into Past (Ancestor), Present (Clan), and Future (Seer). 

 

I know. Predictable. Anyway, just as you have the faces of the Mother, so to does Khaine have three faces. The Young King is one, representing the Fool of the Tarot in some ways. Then you have (and I'm soundboarding names, here) the Blood King, and finally the Blood Sage. It is the Blood King that is the elected "Autarch".

(A quick segue on "Autarchs" for clarity: I never viewed this whole "Path of Leadership" to be necessary. Rather, the Path of the Warrior already had something that fit the criteria: the "Path Sworn", or those Exarchs that were locked into the Path of the Warrior but not sworn to any one Way (Dire Avenger Exarch, Fire Dragon Exarch...) but cycled continually from Way to  Way.)

 

This just to give you an idea of where what laughably might be called my brain might be going for the background of the Craftworld that is swirling around in my head. :)

 

On 2/11/2024 at 6:03 AM, Karhedron said:

The Death Jester works well with the Fates Messenger Enhancement to change one to-Hit dice per turn into a 6 as he has several special abilities that trigger on a 6

 

One of my favourite models of all time. (One of the proxy models that I've found leans into the Death Jester premise hard and I love it!) 

 

That and I love the premise of the Harlequins. 

 

Edit: I'm just noting that I thought of the proxy that I have as a "Death Jester" but that it draws heavily from Maugan Ra (which is a cool mini): 

 

On 2/11/2024 at 10:48 AM, tychobi said:

Best way to get back into gaming is to go play some games!  Good luck and have fun

 

Thank you! :)

 

 

 

Edited by Kage2020
Clarify Maugean Ra / Death Jester comment. Also removed the picture of the "Death Jester"/Maugan Ra proxy JUST IN CASE.
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4 hours ago, Kage2020 said:

I think that my memory might be playing games with me. Working from memory---and I'm getting old so it might not be working that well---there was something called a "wave serpent" (or similar) whose purpose was to act as the Eldar equivalent of a Land Raider or Rhino. It didn't really have powerful weapons (no teeth), but it had a distortion field that was invulnerable. I'm presuming that this is no longer a thing?

 

Don't worry, Wave Serpents are still about. Similar stats to a Falon but it trades some of the firepower for extra transport capacity and a 5+ Invulnerable save. It is a solid choice for transporting large numbers of Aspect Warriors or squads of Wraithguard.

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6 hours ago, Karhedron said:

 

Don't worry, Wave Serpents are still about. Similar stats to a Falon but it trades some of the firepower for extra transport capacity and a 5+ Invulnerable save. It is a solid choice for transporting large numbers of Aspect Warriors or squads of Wraithguard.

 

Wonderful! And that seems like a fairly robust invulnerable save, all things considered (and from what I can remember of such things form the late '80s). :)

 

Right, I guess I've got to look up the latest Codex now? Does that happen to cover all the factions now or are GW still splitting them into the different sub-factions? 'Cos. Money.

(They're a company with shareholders, not a charity! :) )

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At the moment Eldar are still an Index army. That means there is no physical codex but you can download the rules for both Eldar factions. You can also download points values and even the core rules.

 

https://www.warhammer-community.com/warhammer-40000-downloads/

 

 

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TY. 

 

I'm downloading as I type everything that I see as it pertains to Eldar, Dark Eldar, Harlequins, and attendees to the Imperium (read: not soldiers). That last is more to do with painting some minis more than anything else. :)

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