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Tibus367

How to stop losing

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Well myself and two friends have been playing for a while now.  I play a mainly Daemons of Khorne army, while my two friends play Seraphon and Ironjawz.  The Seraphon player almost always wins each time.  Not sure what the rest of us are doing wrong but it is killing our little gaming group.  The Ironjaws player rarely likes to play anymore, having learned from experience that he can't win.  I keep trying from time to time hoping that I will finally find the key to countering the various tactics  he employs to kill us.  I'm kinda stubborn that way.  So I have decided to throw my problem to the experts here in hopes that somebody might have the answer.  I hope that I am not coming off as some whining loser.  I just want to play knowing I have a fair chance of pulling off a victory.  It's no fun loosing every time.

The Seraphon uses a Slann Starmaster as their general using the "Great Remember" command trait and Incandescent Restricts artifact.  So they can teleport around the board twice.  They use this tactic to great effect.  

This ability is used to-

  1.   Take objectives early in the game.  
  2.   Reinforce his control of those objectives each round.
  3.   Teleport his most dangerous units against my weakest units.
  4.   Teleport his most dangerous beasts in deep strikes after my strongest units move forward.
  5.   Teleport swarms of cheap skinks to any heavily guarded territory to claim objectives.

I just can't seem to get where I need to be fast enough as he jumps from one side of the board to the other controlling the battle.  Now you might think that the fact that he has to stay 9' away when teleporting would give me a chance to counter some of this.  That's where his Troglodon comes in with a +3' to charge allow him to get the charge more often than not after a teleport.  He uses a Saurus Oldblood on a Carnosaur to shoot me at range after teleporting (along with the shooting attacks of the Troglodon), and tear through any weaker units it can get to and counter any of my stronger ones.

To make matters worst he has a Bastiladon with a big anti demon death ray on it's back that will ensure that my strongest unit (usually my Wrath Bloodthirster) will be among the first to die.  I have given up giving any artifacts to my strongest heroes knowing they won't have much of a chance to use them.

He keeps that Slann way in the back, hidden, buffing his arming with a constellation and turning all his spells into summoning points, so I can expect that if I manage to kill his Troglodon, Carosaur, or Bastildon, they will be coming right back on round 3.  And thanks to the teleportation I can expect them to be in the battle immediately.  

The only strategy that has worked even a little for me is to somehow kill the Slann before he can summon something with all those celestial points he has been saving.  But that almost never happens as he will simply teleport away if I start getting close.  

From what I have read, Seraphon are considered one of the weaker armies right now.  But from my own personal experience I have not seen how they can loose.  So I am hoping that someone can help me unravel this mystery.  

Now I know that someone is going to ask what units I have available in my army to work with, so here is what I have available now.

  • Wrath of Khorne Bloodthirster
  • 6 Bloodcrushers
  • 30 Bloodletters
  • Bloodsecrator
  • 5 Fleshhounds
  • Bloodthrone
  • Karanak
  • Skull Cannon
  • Skullmaster
  • 2 Slaughterpriests
  • Skull Alter

 

 

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He should have a 1/3 chance to NOT teleport (on a one or two the teleportation fails and then he can't move at all! on a 3-4 he teleports but can't move, and on a 5-6 he can teleport and move).  When he teleports, he must place 9" away from ANY enemy unit, so you can put your long distance things or objective capture units spaced out a bit to block an important area.  I've found that against seraphon you want to take first turn, and run onto objectives.  They are VERY good at mobility, but their actual fighting ability is pretty awful so if you get on the objective first it will be hard for him to shift you.  I rarely shoot at heroes to be honest due to "Look out, Sir!" so make sure you are using that rule and have units near a vulnerable hero.  The other option is to engage the bastilidon because he can only shoot at what he's locked in combat with, (although it's hard to kill him without a tuned mortal wound list, you can tie up a 280 point unit for pretty cheap by throwing almost dead units into it each turn and summoning them back with bloodtithe points).  It is a bit harder for you due to being chaos demons- if you were mortal units I don't think you'd have much trouble at all!

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The 1/3 chance of not teleportation was changed in the latest GHB2019.  Now it is just a straight teleport without any roll (but no possibility to make a normal move after the teleport)

Getting to the objectives first can be hard as Khorne are not known for their speed.  Going first can be costly as it means I will not kill anyone my first turn, but his quick footed teleporting reptiles won't have any trouble getting the charge.

"Look out, Sir" would not apply to my bloodthirster or my Daemon Prince (forgot to mention I have one of those too).  With a 30" range he can make sure to keep his Bastilidon far back and make it difficult to get to.  Killing the Bastilidon I found is pretty ineffective as it has a save of 3+, ignores all rend, and ignores half of all mortal wounds.  In the time it takes me to kill it I probably could kill two or three of his other beasts.

These ideas might help, but there has to be more.  I hope the answer is not to abandon my whole army.

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How to stop losing? Just stop playing. Can't lose if you don't play.

Jokes aside, are there any units you can ally that can reach the objectives before he can lock you in?

Personally I think you need to just deny him any area to teleport to. Its a 9 inch bubble, so what you can do is be extremely cheesy and get a cheap unit with lots of models as an ally and create 1 long line spacing the models as far apart as possible up to 9 inch around your army, which will then force him to teleport another 9 inch beyond that. You then just start pushing your line forward and let the rest follow behind, so that your important units can reach their destination without interruption.

What you want to do is to keep his good units busy for 1 or 2 turns trying to fight off your weak line and in the meantime already get him engaged with yet another cheap unit, if possible, a defensive one.

I see it happening a lot in warhammer 40k where they create large lines of troops around their army to stop deepstriking from happening.

If that doesn't work, I think Khorne has a bad matchup against Seraphon... Many armies have a bad matchup against Seraphon and their weird tactics. It may be an idea to talk with this person and ask their advice how they think you could counter their army? You can simply state you have no idea how to handle his combo and are kind of losing interrest at this rate?

 

Edited by Kugane

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I feel your pain.

Seraphon are a top army. Demons of Khorne are really, really bad. You are going to struggle to win that game most of the time.

Ironjawz, though, should do well. Two mawkrushas will be hard to stop.

If say just stick with it and wait for Seraphon to get brought back to reality when they eventually get a book.

Question though - Does your opponent have all the actual models for the things he summons, and are they painted?

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I have talked to this player and he agrees, knowing that our fun can't go on like it is.  I have encouraged him that we should all start on creating new armies with new factions so that we have more combinations to fight with.  

What about using blood reavers instead of an allied unit?  They are cheapish on points and a little bit faster.  Worth the investment?  I want to avoid switching over to a mortal army but I have already let in some mortals already so it is a smaller jump than to rely on allies.

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Yeah, but "lets all jam 600 euro and 3 months of painting" isn't exactly a 'fix'. Blood reavers could work, their bases are 32mm as well if I'm not mistaken, so you could get a decently long line to deny a lot of area. It is a shame that power-wise you can't really go up against them...

GW is too busy calculating all the money thats coming in to really sit back and calculate game balance XD

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Most people I know will say that to make a Khorne army work, you need to focus on mortals, do that may help. Still, you'll be having mostly demons, and the demons are bad.

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Are people on crazy pills, Seraphon are performing poorly on the competetive scene. They have tricks but very meager hitting power. Without knowing more about his list it is harder to comment, but for example the average base damage output of a 280 point bastilladon shooting vs a 4+ save is 3,5 damage, which is pitiful and only slightly better specifically against daemons due to +1 damage.

The flesh hounds and Karanak should help by getting out there asap, most likely the seraphon player will have few fighty units out there. If he is using both a carnosaur and a troglodon he is already soft balling you somewhat, as both of these are very lackluster, the carnosaur being the most pitiful hero monster in the game for the points, on average a carnosaur does 1/3 of the damage of a mangler squig for example.

Threaten his Slann, by spreading out and aiming surgical strikes at it, remember the retricies can both fail and also possible heal as little as 1 and excess damage carries over, so if you do 10 dmg and he heals 3, he is still dead. Use slaughterpriests and judgements to make life a pain for him.

Teleporting also takes place in the hero phase while summoning is the end of movement phase. He can only summon near the slann or astrolith bearer, meaning he can not teleport a summoned unit before the turn after.

I have a hard time getting over a sentence with Troglodons and tearing through units with shooting is mentioned... It sounds like this guy would absolutely destroy you if he really put his mind to it, so perhaps switch armies? see how he pilots your stuff and get ideas? It will also be frustrating from his perspective, contrary to what one might think, winning all the time, even when soft balling and getting complaints, frowns and as you mention ruining the enthusiasm for the game is terrible. I hope you manage to help each other avoid that.

Edited by Scurvydog
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I don't think people meant the competitive scene specifically, but rather that Seraphon is a better army currently than Khorne. At least, thats what I understood.

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25-11-19-05.png

This is the data on win rates as it stands right now. Some armies got more data than others (some being new as well) but the data for older armies form a rather clear picture. Now I am not trying to say your games against each other should work at this level, but what I am trying to illustrate is that Seraphon is a bottom of the barrel army and is also an army requiring quite a bit of skill. 

Chances are buying new armies will not fix the problem, as he can't really chose anything that performs a lot worse, while he can definitely chose something far more dangerous. 

This is why, for starters, trying to switch armies might highlight some pointers for you. Bias can become extreme in wargaming, especially on a losing streak, so taking a step back and change perspective will probably be more constructive than just buying new stuff.

Seraphon do get bonuses specifically against chaos demons though, and those types of rules, while fluffy are just plain bad for game balance, so your particular matchup is not in your favor when playing demon khorne.

But if you really just want to win more easily you could get a FeC army for example, they are very effective against seraphon, as are deepkin, they can be resilient and fast and shut down a lot of tricks.

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17 minutes ago, Scurvydog said:

Are people on crazy pills, Seraphon are performing poorly on the competetive scene. They have tricks but very meager hitting power. Without knowing more about his list it is harder to comment, but for example the average base damage output of a 280 point bastilladon shooting vs a 4+ save is 3,5 damage, which is pitiful and only slightly better specifically against daemons due to +1 damage.

The flesh hounds and Karanak should help by getting out there asap, most likely the seraphon player will have few fighty units out there. If he is using both a carnosaur and a troglodon he is already soft balling you somewhat, as both of these are very lackluster, the carnosaur being the most pitiful hero monster in the game for the points, on average a carnosaur does 1/3 of the damage of a mangler squig for example.

Threaten his Slann, by spreading out and aiming surgical strikes at it, remember the retricies can both fail and also possible heal as little as 1 and excess damage carries over, so if you do 10 dmg and he heals 3, he is still dead. Use slaughterpriests and judgements to make life a pain for him.

Teleporting also takes place in the hero phase while summoning is the end of movement phase. He can only summon near the slann or astrolith bearer, meaning he can not teleport a summoned unit before the turn after.

I have a hard time getting over a sentence with Troglodons and tearing through units with shooting is mentioned... It sounds like this guy would absolutely destroy you if he really put his mind to it, so perhaps switch armies? see how he pilots your stuff and get ideas? It will also be frustrating from his perspective, contrary to what one might think, winning all the time, even when soft balling and getting complaints, frowns and as you mention ruining the enthusiasm for the game is terrible. I hope you manage to help each other avoid that.

I am not sure if I agree with your math.  If the Saurus Oldblood attachs a bloodletter unit or flesh hounds and uses their command ability, my quick math shows them doing 6 wounds with their jaws alone.  Then another 3 with their spear, plus 1.5 wounds on the gauntlet shooting.  There is some forlimbs in there somewhere.  If they are not dead by then the battleshock with finish them off.

Surgical strikes against Slann won't work as it is hidding behind a rock that I probably can't get to and will only teleport away if it looks like I might get there.

While teleporting does happen in the hero phase and the summon happens in the moment phase, that does not prevent him from teleporting his Slann closer to me and in cover somewhere, and then summon the beast close to me.  The the beast then charges me ruins all my plans.  Another tactic I have not found a good way to counter.

Slaughterpriests do indeed slow him down (he really hates it when I blood boil him twice in my turn).  Especially if they are near my skull alter, but so far it has not been enough to push him back and get the objectives.

 

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Yeah - I have seen the same charts showing Seraphon close to the bottom.  Which is why I am so confused by why I am doing so poorly, and why I am hoping there is some tactic or rule I am missing that would explain this.  

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23 minutes ago, Tibus367 said:

I am not sure if I agree with your math.  If the Saurus Oldblood attachs a bloodletter unit or flesh hounds and uses their command ability, my quick math shows them doing 6 wounds with their jaws alone.  Then another 3 with their spear, plus 1.5 wounds on the gauntlet shooting.  There is some forlimbs in there somewhere.  If they are not dead by then the battleshock with finish them off.

Surgical strikes against Slann won't work as it is hidding behind a rock that I probably can't get to and will only teleport away if it looks like I might get there.

While teleporting does happen in the hero phase and the summon happens in the moment phase, that does not prevent him from teleporting his Slann closer to me and in cover somewhere, and then summon the beast close to me.  The the beast then charges me ruins all my plans.  Another tactic I have not found a good way to counter.

Slaughterpriests do indeed slow him down (he really hates it when I blood boil him twice in my turn).  Especially if they are near my skull alter, but so far it has not been enough to push him back and get the objectives.

 

How exactly is a Saurus Oldblood dealing 6 wounds with their jaws alone? I don't have the seraphon battletome, but looking at the warscroll at the moment I can only see it dealing about 1 damage with its jaws once every 4 attacks or so against a unit with a 5+ save.

I am starting to wonder if the opponent is cheating. Is there a rule that helps them increase attacks and turn it all to mortal wounds or something?


Edit: NVM, I was looking at a saurus oldblood on foot, not the one on carnosaur.

Edited by Kugane

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Can I ask that you change the title to: How to stop loosing and start tightening.

Thanks.

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Seraphon don't do well against the top armies at the moment (Skaven, Slaanesh, FEC etc...) that's why they have poor tournament win rates.  

That being said, they do OK. They have more top 10 finishes than a lot of the other low win rate factions. They aren't far off Fyreslayers and Tzeentch in terms of Top 10, despite having far less podiums.   
They are basically a solid Tier 2 / middle of the pack army. Just struggle at lot against the top dogs.  

Now specifically vs Khorne demons... well they get lots of free benefits directly against demons. So that's always going to be an up hill battle. 
The way I've seen Khorne demons work well is multiple bloodthirsters and lots of small units of flesh hounds. You can spread them out a lot to block teleporting and use them as throw away units to hold up his big stuff and generate blood tithe when they die.   
I think the khorne herald also has some way to make bloodletters attack first? Or attack twice? something like that... so try use that. 
I don't know enough about demons to provide more specific info. But they are a weaker army and unfortunately AOS isn't great in terms of balance between factions.    
Remember that AOS is all about those tricks and combos. Try to find all the ones that your demons get and use them. Ultimately you might need more objective grabbing bloodletters or more flesh hounds for area control. Seraphon don't hit overly hard apart from a few main units. You're going to want some sort of screening unit/chaff to tie those things up (while generating blood tithe) 

If you're looking to inject some more fun into your gaming group, perhaps try a more narrative approach. Play a 2v1 with your ironjaw friend or give the Seraphon player some sort of handicap. 

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An important question to ask - how many points are you playing with?

Seraphon (actually, any list that can summon) get much better at lower point levels.  If you are playing at 1000 points, you are going to be handicapped against them because Seraphon has the exact same amount of summoning at 1000 points as they do at 2000 points.  Khorne does have summoning, but theirs is one of the weaker summonings available.

As for tactics, there are a few things that you can do.  First, you can try to snipe their slaan.  If you can take out the slaan, then they can't generate summoning points anymore.  Additionally, if you race up to the slaan and force him to waste his teleports on escaping, that is less shenanagins that he can get up to with the rest of his list.  If you were playing an order faction I could give advice for how to do this, but I'm not particularly familiar with chaos so I can't really help out there as far as the "how" goes.

Second, you can screen for his teleports.  He can't teleport within 9" of an enemy model.  If you have some cheap chaff, you can use them to create zones around your more critical models that he can't teleport to.  Another thing to consider is running lots of single entity units or MSU.  Since you get tithe points for units dying, this doesn't hurt you as much as other factions, and you can fairly easily deny teleports to large amounts of space with single entity or small units.

Third is to remember that this is an objective based game.  It is entirely possible to win the game with 0 units left on the field (though seraphon are more frequently the one in that position...) provided that you grab enough points early on.  Make sure you are playing objectives and not killing your opponent or the game won't be particularly balanced.

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An oddball answer might be Nimyard's Rough Riders. They can pop up near the slann, and deal damage there. Tsaangor Skyfires may also get in range of the slann.

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ask to switch armies and play his seraphon vs. your khorne. changes the scenery for both of you and grants you a deeper understanding of how their army plays

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Start winning...

In all honesty I've no idea, but I've found the quickest way people drop the hobby is when they start caring too much either way

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53 minutes ago, Boytoy said:

ask to switch armies and play his seraphon vs. your khorne. changes the scenery for both of you and grants you a deeper understanding of how their army plays

Go a step further. Why don't the three of you have a round robin  tournament where you each play with each of the three armies?

As for tactics, I'm no expert but the trick to stopping a teleporting/summoning army would be board presence. 

If you have 3 units of bloodletters string two of the units out along the front of your deployment zone with a 17 inch gap between them. String the third unit in a line between the first two but quite a bit back. 

Put any units you want to protect in the the pocket, so that your opponent can't get near them without going through the bloodletters.

Accept that those units are going to die, but they will protect the meat of your army until they are needed. They will also give you bloodtithe points. 

Edited by Chikout

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7 hours ago, Tibus367 said:

 

Getting to the objectives first can be hard as Khorne are not known for their speed.  Going first can be costly as it means I will not kill anyone my first turn, but his quick footed teleporting reptiles won't have any trouble getting the charge.

"Look out, Sir" would not apply to my bloodthirster or my Daemon Prince (forgot to mention I have one of those too).  With a 30" range he can make sure to keep his Bastilidon far back and make it difficult to get to.  Killing the Bastilidon I found is pretty ineffective as it has a save of 3+, ignores all rend, and ignores half of all mortal wounds.  In the time it takes me to kill it I probably could kill two or three of his other beasts.

 

I play seraphon as my main competitive army.  Im almost always happy to see a Khorne demons army across the table. We have a lot of built in buffs against demons specifically.  That being said I don't like seeing a bunch of units of 5 blood warriors. They fill up the board and prevent good teleports, they stay in my opponent's back field to prevent backfield teleportation shenanigans, they gum up my bastiladons for a turn cause my lizards are bad at combat, and finally when I do finally get through them they're another blood tithe point. 

From what it sounds like your opponent has a slann some skinks a bastiladon and a troglodon. The scariest thing for you is the Bastiladon. With its random number of shots your opponent must get really lucky if it's so deadly, but it also only has a 20" range not 30. The way these fall is number of attacks so your blood crushers and blood letters are the way to go. The troglodon and Carnosaur are scary, but they are definitely glass hammers. They will try to smash something but if they get hit they shatter. You're worried about these big boys shooting you then charging, but if all they have to charge are chaff units with a big blood something behind them waiting to counter charge then you can watch them crumble. As far as the slann goes teleportation happens in hero phase and summoning happens at end of movement, so there shouldn't be any summoning a unit then teleporting that unit. If your opponent is summoning big monsters then they won't be summoning skinks to play the objective game. If they're summoning skinks then just feast on skinks. Summoning lots of skinks is Seraphon's number one strategy and khorne loves lots of 10 man 1 wound 6+ save dudes. Anyone that plays against me knows to surround the skinks whenever they charge so that they cant escape, and focus on the skinks. Without them we have no objective game and we have to spend all our summoning points just to get our battle line back.

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Now I play Khorne mortals so have little experience of a daemon army. However, somethings I note above

You currently have 1 thirster. I find with these guys you need to go all in or go home ie get more as they support one another and opens up tyrants of blood battalion which  allows all your thirsters to fight one after the other

Murderhost is another useful battalion to consider and works with your current units. mix in skulltaker to reroll wounds of 1 and a fury thirster for the 6 inch pile in - with murderhost, 6 inch run and 6 inch pile you will get across the board fast. Plus you dictate the combat phase as he can’t pile in 

Mortals will give your army some back bone and access to abilities outside of the daemons. For example dark feast allows you to cheaply bring and drop a priest plus lots of reavers, for bodies on the ground. Gorepilgrims brings al your support and some chaff. Skull reapers for MW on the attack and a pretty solid anvil.

Blood alter is not worth bringing, skull cannon on its own is fairly poor. Good in units of 3 with a hero for locus. Herald of Khorne should be summoned. I am not a fan of bloodcrushers. In packs of 6 you only need to lose one to lose the big MW effect

Miltiple small units are Khornes friend, each is a cheap tithe and also 

Consider adding  in the following

10 more hounds to run 3 packs of 5

Fury and rage thirsters (maybe down grade the wok bt to fury and get 2 rage)

Mortals are worth considering, but appreciate they might not be your thing. Plenty of Khorne daemon armies have minimal mortals,  and sometimes none, and do fine.

 

 

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To add to everyone else's points, have you considered bringing a unit like Untamed beasts or Ungor raiders?   Pre-battle push out 6".   Your opponent's teleports are then 15" away from your key stuff

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10 hours ago, Scurvydog said:

<Snip>

Come on man, nobody is saying that Seraphon is OP in a competitive environment. Your statistics are 100% irrelevant when this post is about casual games between mates that lack experience and seemingly just put random units into a list and call it a day. Absolutely nothing wrong with this. Armies have significant different power levels depending on what kind of experience the player has controlling them, fighting against them and what units are being fielded. 

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