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Chris Tomlin

AoS 2 - Darkling Covens Discussion

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Morning all,

Here is the new thread for discussing Darkling Covens. With the imminent release of AoS 2 (and a lot of the info already being out there), now is the time for us to start afresh on TGA.

Moving forward, this will be the main thread to chat about and discuss Darkling Covens in the new edition. I still wholly encourage people to keep their own threads/army blogs within this sub forum and I also think those are a great place to share some photos as I know not everyone frequents the Painting & Modelling section (like me!). But this thread is purely for discussion around the faction, things such as (but not limited to) tactics and list building etc. You all know the drill, we've been doing it on this forum since inception!

For newer players, I would say the older thread could still be worth perusal (especially as it is one of the shorter threads like this) and whilst it is now locked for further replies, you can find it here - http://www.tga.community/forums/topic/11326-lets-chat-darkling-covens/

Really excited to see what we can come up with as a community and I look forward to reading all your ideas and thoughts.

Chris

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Hi all, it’s perhsps a measure of my slow progress over the last year with darkling covens that my planned 2000-point army is likely to never set foot (base?) on a tabletop to play under the GH17 system I first used to create it! Oh well, the effort hasn’t been in vain as I’m now poised to get into AoS2 right from the start with an army I’ve collected and painted from scratch. I’m sure it’ll do me well. I’m mainly waiting for the new points values to come out, but has anybody else got any particular ‘thing’ they’re looking for, to update their own DC army?  

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Darkling Covens have got it made with endless spells in the new edition. With a basic +2 to cast on Sorceresses after they've sacrificed a spearman and a casting and range boosting command traits and artefacts they're looking second to Nagash and Arkhan for reliably getting the big spells off. I'd be tempted to start a small force myself if the new Stormcast endless spells didn't look so damn cool!

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1 hour ago, Double Misfire said:

Darkling Covens have got it made with endless spells in the new edition. With a basic +2 to cast on Sorceresses after they've sacrificed a spearman and a casting and range boosting command traits and artefacts they're looking second to Nagash and Arkhan for reliably getting the big spells off. I'd be tempted to start a small force myself if the new Stormcast endless spells didn't look so damn cool!

I keep discounting the ability to sacrifice and taking them as allies as a back line in my own army. Taking 2 lots of 10 spears or shards and 2 sorceress for the 400 allowance gives access to some spell casting power. You can still sacrifice outside of the DC allegiance can't you? Just based on key words?

I've made a thread about the other Aelven factions and how allies, endless spells and artefacts of AoS2 here if anyone wishes to contribute:

 

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12 minutes ago, syph0n said:

I keep discounting the ability to sacrifice and taking them as allies as a back line in my own army. Taking 2 lots of 10 spears or shards and 2 sorceress for the 400 allowance gives access to some spell casting power. You can still sacrifice outside of the DC allegiance can't you? Just based on key words?

It's on the Sorceress and Sorceress on Black Dragon's warscrolls, so you're can sacrifice where and whenever you want (willingness of the friendly Darkling Covens model within 1" to be sacrificed subject to conditions).

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Do we have any changes about alleigances abilities and artefacts on the GHB18 or they stayed the same?

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99% sure they stayed the same. Just the points drops to Black Guard, Black Dragon and rise to Sorceress etc. 

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2 hours ago, syph0n said:

99% sure they stayed the same. Just the points drops to Black Guard, Black Dragon and rise to Sorceress etc. 

Thanks !! 

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On 7/5/2018 at 9:37 PM, syph0n said:

99% sure they stayed the same. Just the points drops to Black Guard, Black Dragon and rise to Sorceress etc. 

Speaking of the Black Dragon: Has anyone had any luck finding a good alternate model? I haven‘t found one I like so far :/

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7 hours ago, JackStreicher said:

Speaking of the Black Dragon: Has anyone had any luck finding a good alternate model? I haven‘t found one I like so far :/

Carmine dragon is a good alternate for EVERY dragon since it's just an AWESOME dragon model. ..

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36 minutes ago, Aezeal said:

Carmine dragon is a good alternate for EVERY dragon since it's just an AWESOME dragon model. ..

Sold mine I am just not into the GW dragon style ^^ (they usually have strange bellies and too small wings)

Edited by JackStreicher

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I've just finished a tournament where I used the list below

LEADERS
Sorceress (100)
- General
- Command Trait : Master of the Sorcerous Arts 
- Artefact : Decanter of Egos 
Sorceress (100)
UNITS
20 x Darkshards (200)
20 x Darkshards (200)
10 x Executioners (160)
10 x Executioners (160)
5 x Khinerai Heartrenders (80)
- Allies
Tot 1000

I played 3 games against:

1 khorne 2 khorne 3 stormcast

I lost them all but the first 2 games against Khorne were very balanced and we make both the same victory points at the end and I lost because my opponent destroyed more units to me then I did. The third game against stormcast externals was just a complete defeat thanks to some my big deployment and strategic mistakes.

I'm very happy how the executioners and the 2 sorceress did well. supporting them with magic. 

I was just a little disappointed about the darkshard because of their range 16" it is useful only when shooting to enemy units already in combat, otherwise it's a way too easy for them to get charged even before the can shoot anything.

In general I'm quite happy because I've not lot's of experience with AoS and I managed to responde well in the first two games.

If you have any advise to improve my list I'd be happy, especially if you know a way to use the darkshard better because I see the potential with these 80 dices 5+ to hit(4+with 20+ models bonus) and 4+ to wound its not so bad!

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2 minutes ago, Alessio said:

I've just finished a tournament where I used the list below

LEADERS
Sorceress (100)
- General
- Command Trait : Master of the Sorcerous Arts 
- Artefact : Decanter of Egos 
Sorceress (100)
UNITS
20 x Darkshards (200)
20 x Darkshards (200)
10 x Executioners (160)
10 x Executioners (160)
5 x Khinerai Heartrenders (80)
- Allies
Tot 1000

I played 3 games against:

1 khorne 2 khorne 3 stormcast

I lost them all but the first 2 games against Khorne were very balanced and we make both the same victory points at the end and I lost because my opponent destroyed more units to me then I did. The third game against stormcast externals was just a complete defeat thanks to some my big deployment and strategic mistakes.

I'm very happy how the executioners and the 2 sorceress did well. supporting them with magic. 

I was just a little disappointed about the darkshard because of their range 16" it is useful only when shooting to enemy units already in combat, otherwise it's a way too easy for them to get charged even before the can shoot anything.

In general I'm quite happy because I've not lot's of experience with AoS and I managed to responde well in the first two games.

If you have any advise to improve my list I'd be happy, especially if you know a way to use the darkshard better because I see the potential with these 80 dices 5+ to hit(4+with 20+ models bonus) and 4+ to wound its not so bad!

Take my “advice” with a barrel of salt, however: in the lore and like 3 seconds of reading I’ve done because I really want to collect this army it seems like they fight with Bleakswords out front, Spearmen behind those and then Darkshards behind those. 

So maybe trade 20 Darkshards for 20 Bleakswords or Spearmen as a screen to block charging? You can still shoot into combat unlike 40k. It might help?

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@Alessio

thank you for the battle Report. I respect it a lot when People post loosing games. We do improve more with learning from lost games then from victories!

lest dive into your list: There are a few Problems with the list, which are mandatory for the darkling covens. First is Speed! Your only unit with a movement over 6" are the Heartrenders and they are just taking a sneeze from the enemy to fall apart. The Inc. Retainer is a good choice as you might be able to get your Units into Shooting range or onto the important objectives.

Two Sorceresses are good to have, but you dont use any of the new shiny endless spells. Do not expect any damage form the Darkshards! They produce a lot of shots, but without any rend those pesky Liberators just shake the bolts off.

I recommend to make use of the battleline - ability of executioners and the Black Guard. Those Units provide rend and much needed mortal wounds. Your expections for the Darkshards should see them as a Screen for your more elite Units and a backline defence against teleporting Units (chaff/Zoning). This is the field where they excel best.

The combination of Bleakswords in front, second row spears and third the darkshards Sound appealing, but produce big cost (300 Points per 3x10 men) without being a powerhouse combination. You might get more from the Discount of 40 maxed out Spearmen as the cost just 60 Points more for 10 more wounds and the possibility to let 3 rows fight.

 

----------

I played my first game of AoS 2 last Weekend. It was great! I am playing Druchii factions only and Chose 2000 Points of the Darkling Covens. We had a teamgame with 2x2000 Points per side. My list from Ulgu and I sided with Stormacast vs. the great armies of death (Host of nagash and Nighthaunt). I think the Scenario was "Duality of Death" (the one with the 4 objectives giving 1-2-4 VP per battleround)

Sorceress On Black Dragon (280)
Sorceress (100)
Assassin (80)
40 x Dreadspears (360)
10 x Darkshards (100)
10 x Darkshards (100)
20 x Executioners (320)
30 x Black Guard (360)
Thrall Warhost (180)
Chronomantic Cogs (60)
Geminids of Uhl-Gysh (40)

Total: 1980 / 2000

We won the game bacause we could take the two middle objectives early. The decanter of Egos brought my Black Guard in fast and before them a shielding Screen of Darkshards. Executioners stood ready for a Counter Charge. Bringing a lot of bodies which can fight decently is one of the big strenghts of the darkling covens. Also the new endless spells helped a lot for the lackluster movement and the lack of rend/mortal wounds in my army. MVP of the game was the Assassin with Dimensional Blade (-3 rend) which slaughtered Mr. 7 wound Arkhan the Black in one turn of combat before he could strike.

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3 hours ago, Kaleun said:

@Alessio

thank you for the battle Report. I respect it a lot when People post loosing games. We do improve more with learning from lost games then from victories!

lest dive into your list: There are a few Problems with the list, which are mandatory for the darkling covens. First is Speed! Your only unit with a movement over 6" are the Heartrenders and they are just taking a sneeze from the enemy to fall apart. The Inc. Retainer is a good choice as you might be able to get your Units into Shooting range or onto the important objectives.

Two Sorceresses are good to have, but you dont use any of the new shiny endless spells. Do not expect any damage form the Darkshards! They produce a lot of shots, but without any rend those pesky Liberators just shake the bolts off.

I recommend to make use of the battleline - ability of executioners and the Black Guard. Those Units provide rend and much needed mortal wounds. Your expections for the Darkshards should see them as a Screen for your more elite Units and a backline defence against teleporting Units (chaff/Zoning). This is the field where they excel best.

The combination of Bleakswords in front, second row spears and third the darkshards Sound appealing, but produce big cost (300 Points per 3x10 men) without being a powerhouse combination. You might get more from the Discount of 40 maxed out Spearmen as the cost just 60 Points more for 10 more wounds and the possibility to let 3 rows fight.

 

----------

I played my first game of AoS 2 last Weekend. It was great! I am playing Druchii factions only and Chose 2000 Points of the Darkling Covens. We had a teamgame with 2x2000 Points per side. My list from Ulgu and I sided with Stormacast vs. the great armies of death (Host of nagash and Nighthaunt). I think the Scenario was "Duality of Death" (the one with the 4 objectives giving 1-2-4 VP per battleround)

Sorceress On Black Dragon (280)
Sorceress (100)
Assassin (80)
40 x Dreadspears (360)
10 x Darkshards (100)
10 x Darkshards (100)
20 x Executioners (320)
30 x Black Guard (360)
Thrall Warhost (180)
Chronomantic Cogs (60)
Geminids of Uhl-Gysh (40)

Total: 1980 / 2000

We won the game bacause we could take the two middle objectives early. The decanter of Egos brought my Black Guard in fast and before them a shielding Screen of Darkshards. Executioners stood ready for a Counter Charge. Bringing a lot of bodies which can fight decently is one of the big strenghts of the darkling covens. Also the new endless spells helped a lot for the lackluster movement and the lack of rend/mortal wounds in my army. MVP of the game was the Assassin with Dimensional Blade (-3 rend) which slaughtered Mr. 7 wound Arkhan the Black in one turn of combat before he could strike.

Awesome to hear. I applaud all Druchii victories. There was a discussion around allies taking artefacts (or not) on a thread here the other day. I was always under the impression that GA artefacts (and by extension Malign Sorcery) could be taken by allies, but some argued allies can't take them. I see you used the sword on the Assassin (which I like the idea of too). 

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@Ravinsild 

@Kaleun

Thanks a lot guys! I find your advises very useful. I'll definitely try some and I'll write here  if I make any progress.

I'd like to ask to Kaleun how do you use the sorcerers on black dragon?

I see her very fragile with a save of 5+, do you make her the general?( possibility to improve the save +1 or -1 to get hit) but doing so means keeping her always nearby the infantry (able to use the 2 command abilities that only our general has) and it's pity because she has a dragon and so the capacity to move where others couldn't go. I'm asking you because I'd like the idea to use this model but I've always found the sorcerers on foot a better options but maybe I'm wrong!

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@syph0n

thank you very much. I understand the discussion, but me and the other Players agreed that it is possible. The Dimensional Blade makes the assassines insanly great. I can see no real reason not to take the artefact as the assassin is also from ulgu as is the rest of the army.

@Alessio

The Sorceress vs. sorceress on black Dragon (SoBD) is a great Topic!

I totally agree with you. Do not see the SoBD as a straightforward combat unit. She is a "Support Platform". There are a few reasons why I took her into my army.

.) She is a great Support. Having the new rules in AoS 2 allows more Command abilities per hero Phase which is great on the darkling covens
.) when I take the Thrall Warhost I make her my General and also the coven leader. For this I Need more sustain, which the Sorceress doesnt provide. The Coven leader is a key target so we Need as much sustain for her as we can get. This brings us to the multiwound Dragon.
.) mobility is key. Some battleplans require your heroes to take objectives.
.) In some games the SoBD can act as mobile firefighter and help on flanks
.) bigger base! This increases the buff bubble of her abilities
.) She sits on a Dragon!! This alone is a impressive sight and the enemy respects the claws and jaws of the Dragon. Also she brings much needed rend to the table
.) Arcane bolt received a nerf which makes her Bladewind a bit more interesting
.) Thrall Tactic: In the game mentioned above I used the Thrall Warhost Ability to Charge my SoBD into a Mournghul in the hero Phase, well knowing that she wont survive a Retaliation. After doing damage in the hero Phase I launched the Geminids and flew away to the backfield during the movement Phase saving my SoBD.

although she is still expensive the SoBD has a lot of uses. Just dont engage her alone or she wont last. In my games you find her in the backfield while waiting for easy late game kills. However the Sorceress on foot also has great uses and might be the better bargain pointwise!! Lets have a look:

.) Sorceress does now have "look out Sir" Close to Units
.) she has one of the best spells in the game (Word of Pain)!
.) small size can hide her behind Terrain
.) quite cheap
.) Balewind Vortex available

For smaller games i would also take the Sorceress on foot. Be careful with the Battalion though! If you make a Sorceress on foot the coven leader you efficiently created a 280 Point (100+180 for the Warhost) objective with 5 wound and a bad save for the enemy making your battalion obsolete if she dies!

Take "Impossibly Swift" on the Sorceress on Dragon! It is just great.

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Great post @Kaleun. That's how I feel about none-faction artefacts, but wondered if there was a clear official line on it. 

With the SoBD now being 280 points she's a lot more viable. Have you considered using something like the Doppleganger Cloak on her from Ulgu? If I remember right, unless she fights she cannot be targeted. 

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The doppelganger cloak seems to be a great item! I really looking forward to my first AoS 2 game with Order Serpentis, as I really see value in the item on a Dreadlord on Black Dragon. I am thinking of something like 2 Dragons: one with Exile Blade + Dimensional Blade and the other with the doppelganger cloak as you said. Put some Drakespawn Knights, a chariot and a hydra in for the battalion requierments and we find a 1500 point army from ulgu and the Anvilguard rules (Implacable March).

The reason I fell in love with the Incorporal Retainer is the speed it provides in the first battle round. The most important phase, which ultimately won us the game, was the first movement phase. Darkling Covens are very good at holding objectives! The Chronomatic Cogs, the Inc. Retainer and also the Ability "On the double" for 1 command point is so good for us. There isnt much that can move a 30 men unit of black guard with battleshock immunity from the sorceress, bravery 8+2 and a screen ob Darkshards in front and in the backfield.

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16 minutes ago, Kaleun said:

The doppelganger cloak seems to be a great item! I really looking forward to my first AoS 2 game with Order Serpentis, as I really see value in the item on a Dreadlord on Black Dragon. I am thinking of something like 2 Dragons: one with Exile Blade + Dimensional Blade and the other with the doppelganger cloak as you said. Put some Drakespawn Knights, a chariot and a hydra in for the battalion requierments and we find a 1500 point army from ulgu and the Anvilguard rules (Implacable March).

The reason I fell in love with the Incorporal Retainer is the speed it provides in the first battle round. The most important phase, which ultimately won us the game, was the first movement phase. Darkling Covens are very good at holding objectives! The Chronomatic Cogs, the Inc. Retainer and also the Ability "On the double" for 1 command point is so good for us. There isnt much that can move a 30 men unit of black guard with battleshock immunity from the sorceress, bravery 8+2 and a screen ob Darkshards in front and in the backfield.

I've made a thread for Order Serpentis and your thoughts mirror mine exactly. I love the idea of the Dimensional Blade on the General (with Legendary Fighter) and the Doppleganger on the other dragon or the Sword of Judgment... Maybe even Spellmirror. I'm taking a 2nd hydra to get myself up to around 1650 with the Battalion, then look to take a Sorceress and 10 Dreadspears/Shards (for casting bonuses), Chronomatic Cogs and Geminids. That maintains Anvilgard too. 

See my sig for discussion, your input would be very welcome!

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20 hours ago, Kaleun said:

@syph0n

thank you very much. I understand the discussion, but me and the other Players agreed that it is possible. The Dimensional Blade makes the assassines insanly great. I can see no real reason not to take the artefact as the assassin is also from ulgu as is the rest of the army.

@Alessio

The Sorceress vs. sorceress on black Dragon (SoBD) is a great Topic!

I totally agree with you. Do not see the SoBD as a straightforward combat unit. She is a "Support Platform". There are a few reasons why I took her into my army.

.) She is a great Support. Having the new rules in AoS 2 allows more Command abilities per hero Phase which is great on the darkling covens
.) when I take the Thrall Warhost I make her my General and also the coven leader. For this I Need more sustain, which the Sorceress doesnt provide. The Coven leader is a key target so we Need as much sustain for her as we can get. This brings us to the multiwound Dragon.
.) mobility is key. Some battleplans require your heroes to take objectives.
.) In some games the SoBD can act as mobile firefighter and help on flanks
.) bigger base! This increases the buff bubble of her abilities
.) She sits on a Dragon!! This alone is a impressive sight and the enemy respects the claws and jaws of the Dragon. Also she brings much needed rend to the table
.) Arcane bolt received a nerf which makes her Bladewind a bit more interesting
.) Thrall Tactic: In the game mentioned above I used the Thrall Warhost Ability to Charge my SoBD into a Mournghul in the hero Phase, well knowing that she wont survive a Retaliation. After doing damage in the hero Phase I launched the Geminids and flew away to the backfield during the movement Phase saving my SoBD.

although she is still expensive the SoBD has a lot of uses. Just dont engage her alone or she wont last. In my games you find her in the backfield while waiting for easy late game kills. However the Sorceress on foot also has great uses and might be the better bargain pointwise!! Lets have a look:

.) Sorceress does now have "look out Sir" Close to Units
.) she has one of the best spells in the game (Word of Pain)!
.) small size can hide her behind Terrain
.) quite cheap
.) Balewind Vortex available

For smaller games i would also take the Sorceress on foot. Be careful with the Battalion though! If you make a Sorceress on foot the coven leader you efficiently created a 280 Point (100+180 for the Warhost) objective with 5 wound and a bad save for the enemy making your battalion obsolete if she dies!

Take "Impossibly Swift" on the Sorceress on Dragon! It is just great.

Thanks a lot for the analysis it's good to learn from more experienced players!! That's just very useful, I'll definitely try the SoBD too

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