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Black knights any use?


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On 5/28/2021 at 4:55 PM, Greybeard86 said:

I was hoping they would have some use. I wanted to do a Bret/black knight conversion for a Mousillon themed army.

Although I guess that, if it comes down to it, I could roll them as Blood Knights...

Let's hope the rules changes in 3rd edition make fast heroes good, hm? Also, if giving reroll 1s to hit is no longer a generic option, that could be worthwhile. I think it's looking like giving units +1 to hit/wound/save will be easy in the next edition. Rerolls might actually become a rare buff. If that's the case, the Wight King might be a good support hero for Grave Guard, who can probably get to 2+/2+ if you really want to.

Black Knights, on the other hand... Unless there are some real shennanigans introduced in the charge phase, I don't see how a general rules update will help them. Especially since it would probably help either Direwolves or Blood Knights more. The just need a point drop, or, if possible, a warscroll change.

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On 5/28/2021 at 10:34 PM, Sception said:

Although in this case the grave guard shields will become fundamentally /worse/ than those of other deathrattle units.  Either way it's awkward that they don't work the same way.

Is there that much difference between a unit's Save characteristic being improved by 1, and a unit getting +1 to save rolls? I would have thought that was functionally identical in all but the most niche edge cases.

I strongly suspect they took away the Black Knights' shield rule with the intention of improving their Save in exactly the same way as the Deathrattle Skeletons, but then just lost the change to their Save number somewhere in the editing process. Black Knights with a 4+ save base would be a decent pick at 120 points. We can but hope for an errata.

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1 hour ago, Neil Arthur Hotep said:

Let's hope the rules changes in 3rd edition make fast heroes good, hm? Also, if giving reroll 1s to hit is no longer a generic option, that could be worthwhile. I think it's looking like giving units +1 to hit/wound/save will be easy in the next edition. Rerolls might actually become a rare buff. If that's the case, the Wight King might be a good support hero for Grave Guard, who can probably get to 2+/2+ if you really want to.

Black Knights, on the other hand... Unless there are some real shennanigans introduced in the charge phase, I don't see how a general rules update will help them. Especially since it would probably help either Direwolves or Blood Knights more. The just need a point drop, or, if possible, a warscroll change.

They need a niche, they currently have none. But I guess they wanted to make sure their red cousins had a prominent role, not so much the older models.

In my humble opinion (not a AoS game system master), I think the issue is that it is too easy to get "juicy elite point efficient units" as battleline, so other models have no place. If you can spam red knights, why bother with black knights?

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Posted (edited)
13 minutes ago, Greybeard86 said:

They need a niche, they currently have none. But I guess they wanted to make sure their red cousins had a prominent role, not so much the older models.

They were bad before but became somewhat useful/cool on the charge. If they kept their Lance charge rule and went down to 110 points they‘d be cool. Not good but cool. 
the way they are now makes them pretty useless for 120 points. It‘s not about a niche it‘s the combination of „does nothing noteable“ and „costs too much“

Edited by JackStreicher
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43 minutes ago, Kadeton said:

Is there that much difference between a unit's Save characteristic being improved by 1, and a unit getting +1 to save rolls? I would have thought that was functionally identical in all but the most niche edge cases.

I strongly suspect they took away the Black Knights' shield rule with the intention of improving their Save in exactly the same way as the Deathrattle Skeletons, but then just lost the change to their Save number somewhere in the editing process. Black Knights with a 4+ save base would be a decent pick at 120 points. We can but hope for an errata.

It's not currently a big difference, but if saves get capped at +1 next edition (as is rumoured) it will be. The difference between being able to get to 3+ as opposed to being stuck on 4+ is pretty large, because the value of +1 to saves increases with a higher base save.

Let's hope for a quick warscroll change on Black Knights. I know this kind of thing has historically been rare, but the recent Lumineth errata had some keyword changes on a few units that absolutely nobody would have expected, so I think there is a chance that the rules team will change a warscroll if there was a genuine error.

 

14 minutes ago, Greybeard86 said:

They need a niche, they currently have none.

 

1 minute ago, JackStreicher said:

They were bad before but became somewhat useful/cool on the charge. If they kept their Lance charge rule and went down to 110 points they‘d be cool. Not good but cool. 

I actually think the high amount of low-quality damage Black Knights had previously would be pretty useful in Gravelords. The tome actually has a bit of a problem clearing big blocks of low save units. All our units either deal medium amounts of high-quality damage or low amounts of low-quality, with the exception of Grave Guard who just delete everything.

It's just sad with Black Knights. They could have had a decen niche with either a mobility buff (run and charge), their old bonus damage on the charge OR a 4+ save. And they just got none of those things.

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At this point, if they won't support them, why keep selling them, though? I'll run them as blood knights, given my conversion. But it just seems poor taste, specially given that it is not that the new VC have that many units anyway.

What could be a potential role for them?

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55 minutes ago, Kadeton said:

Is there that much difference between a unit's Save characteristic being improved by 1, and a unit getting +1 to save rolls? I would have thought that was functionally identical in all but the most niche edge cases.

It is quite similar in most cases. (if your Save Characteristic changes from 5 to 4 and you check if you have Dice with a for on them or if your Diceroles will become a 5 after adding one and you check which dice have a value of 5 or more after modifiers.

The only real difference is Save Characteristic 1+ because after you can't get less than 1 on modifiers a dice roll that wasn't a 1 in the first place will save even with a rend of -6 because at the end the comparion will be modified roll of 1 = Savecharacteristic of 1.

If 3.0 will restrict the amount of buffs on to-Hit, to-Wound and Save, making the characteristic better will have more value, because buffs on the characteristic are most likely not restricted to a +/-1 and their is also the question if rend will be a modifier on the characteristic because of this (otherwise high rend wouldn't make much sense).

 

The Strange thing with the Black Knights shield is, while they simply lost the buff (they had a 5+ save in the old book as well) the Blood Knights got better (they had the same rule 4+ Save and +1 against Rend "-" and now have Save 3+. The thing with removing the Shields is mostly, that units that got the shield removed often only have one set of Weapon options that includes the shield while those with a shield rule have loadouts with and without shields. It was simple a way to reduce the amount of abilites on the warscrolls.

 

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1 hour ago, Neil Arthur Hotep said:

The tome actually has a bit of a problem clearing big blocks of low save units

Ahem, Grave guard? They blend pretty much everything. A block of twenty toss out potential 80 damage?!

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2 minutes ago, rosa said:

Ahem, Grave guard? They blend pretty much everything. A block of twenty toss out potential 80 damage?!

I mentioned them in literally the following sentence :)

However, even with Grave Guard, an option to deliver high amounts of low quality damage long distance would be nice. Black Knights are speedy at a 12" move, 6" auto-charge.

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2 hours ago, Neil Arthur Hotep said:

It's not currently a big difference, but if saves get capped at +1 next edition (as is rumoured) it will be. The difference between being able to get to 3+ as opposed to being stuck on 4+ is pretty large, because the value of +1 to saves increases with a higher base save.

Bonuses to saves aren't capped in 40K 9th, are they? (Correct me if I'm wrong, I haven't played 40K in years. I'd expect AoS3 to use exactly the same modifier caps, though.) I can understand capping to-Hit and to-Wound modifiers at a max of +1/-1, but since it seems unlikely that Rend (or any other Save penalties) would be capped at -1, it feels intuitively wrong for Save modifiers to be capped in only one direction.

But yes, if that ends up being the case then that would be a significant difference against attacks without Rend. And there was literally no reason they couldn't have written the rule to change the Save characteristic instead of adding a modifier, which would avoid any potential future issues.

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14 minutes ago, Kadeton said:

Bonuses to saves aren't capped in 40K 9th, are they? (Correct me if I'm wrong, I haven't played 40K in years. I'd expect AoS3 to use exactly the same modifier caps, though.) I can understand capping to-Hit and to-Wound modifiers at a max of +1/-1, but since it seems unlikely that Rend (or any other Save penalties) would be capped at -1, it feels intuitively wrong for Save modifiers to be capped in only one direction.

But yes, if that ends up being the case then that would be a significant difference against attacks without Rend. And there was literally no reason they couldn't have written the rule to change the Save characteristic instead of adding a modifier, which would avoid any potential future issues.

We will have to see, but here's why I suspect saves will be capped in AoS 3.

It seems that +1 to saves will become a lot more wide spread. We have rumours that Mystic Shield will be +1 to saves next edition. There is supposedly a charge reaction that gives +1 to saves. The Gravelords battletome, probably designed with AoS 3 rules in mind, has several instances of +1 to saves.

Also, more units seem to be getting moved to 2+ base saves. Kragnos and that Stormcast paladin for example. This indicates to me that reroll saves of 1 will become less common, since that's a huge boon if you sit on a 2+ naturally. I think the design intention of AoS 3 might be to make use of the full spectrum of saves (and to hit and wound values, I suspect), but to remove reroll abilities in order to make the game play faster.

To that end it would make sense to cap bonuses to save, but not rend. Because it will make the game overall play faster since more damage gets through, even if saves are higher. It would also serve as a countermeasure to buff stacking: Single buffs would be more impactful, but stacking multiple buffs would have less payoff.

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6 minutes ago, Neil Arthur Hotep said:

We will have to see, but here's why I suspect saves will be capped in AoS 3.

It seems that +1 to saves will become a lot more wide spread. We have rumours that Mystic Shield will be +1 to saves next edition. There is supposedly a charge reaction that gives +1 to saves. The Gravelords battletome, probably designed with AoS 3 rules in mind, has several instances of +1 to saves.

Also, more units seem to be getting moved to 2+ base saves. Kragnos and that Stormcast paladin for example. This indicates to me that reroll saves of 1 will become less common, since that's a huge boon if you sit on a 2+ naturally. I think the design intention of AoS 3 might be to make use of the full spectrum of saves (and to hit and wound values, I suspect), but to remove reroll abilities in order to make the game play faster.

To that end it would make sense to cap bonuses to save, but not rend. Because it will make the game overall play faster since more damage gets through, even if saves are higher. It would also serve as a countermeasure to buff stacking: Single buffs would be more impactful, but stacking multiple buffs would have less payoff.

Interesting thoughts! I agree with the logic of reducing the number of rerolls for a faster experience. Honestly though, I would expect that providing better saves and more save modifiers across the board is an intentional move away from the lethality of the current game. The 'rocket tag' feel is one of the more common complaints I've seen about AoS.

I'd be very hesitant to expect that the "full spectrum of to hit and wound values" will be much in evidence in AoS3, if the Gravelords are anything to go by. Whoever had to type out the weapon profiles in that book probably wore the '3' and '4' keys off their keyboard.

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4 minutes ago, Kadeton said:

I'd be very hesitant to expect that the "full spectrum of to hit and wound values" will be much in evidence in AoS3, if the Gravelords are anything to go by. Whoever had to type out the weapon profiles in that book probably wore the '3' and '4' keys off their keyboard.

You're not wrong.

Even if AoS 3 makes use of the full spectrum of values, though, I would expect to see mostly 4+ for low quality troops and mostly 3+ for elites. 2+ seems to be reserved for heroes, 5+ or even 6+ for the real trash units like Zombies.

 

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Well... before giving them +1 attack and vanhels was an expensive (in the way of putting buffs on a mediocre unit) way of launching a fast moving unit to charge in and do quite a bit of damage... and then probably die as they were only good on the charge. Now with that rend and damage on the charge buff gone... I have no idea except for a tax on a battalion.

If they would only get something of a grave guard on horse statline I'd be pretty happy. 

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At this point, what are black knights supposed to represent?

Both black knights and grave guard are supposed to be more powerful undead than skeletons, and they were elite/nobles in life.

The lore description is a tad different, with grave guard being depicted as "housecarls" (retainers), whereas black knights are "princes and nobles".

So based on the lore, it seems black knights should be at least as powerful as grave guard. Are they, per point?

Then, they are also shock cavalry. How do they stand in that role against blood knights? Are they supposed to be "less elite",  but still somehow comparable in cost-effectiveness?

Should they work better in combination with a Wight King?

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Posted (edited)

Well I mean, if they are going to cap it, there will be a ton of units that will never be able to benefit from the effect.

Stormvermin, clanrats, most dwarf units already are getting a +1 to the save, capping it would be pretty bad for them.

In the other hand having the chance to see Fyreslayer Berserker not being able to get a better save than a 4+ is something I would happily take the cap

Edited by Skreech Verminking
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22 hours ago, rosa said:

Ahem, Grave guard? They blend pretty much everything. A block of twenty toss out potential 80 damage?!

Did you quit reading his post mid-paragraph?  I'm trying to figure out how you got to the sentence you quoted, but apparently did not get to the one right after it.  🤣

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On 5/28/2021 at 4:31 AM, Neil Arthur Hotep said:

On most Deathrattle warscrolls, the shield's "+1 to saves against rend -1" was just traded in for an unconditional +1 to saves. And that +1 to saves is already factored into the save characteristic. Which is what you want: If in AoS 3 bonuses to saves are capped at +1, you want a high base save, not a save bonus already on the warscroll which would preclude you from getting other save bonuses.

Neither black knights nor skeletons got the +1 baked into their profile. They went from 5+ and 6+ with shields respectively to just 5+ and 6+ with no bonuses.

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41 minutes ago, Cronotekk said:

Neither black knights nor skeletons got the +1 baked into their profile. They went from 5+ and 6+ with shields respectively to just 5+ and 6+ with no bonuses.

Check the warscrolls again, Skeletons are on a 5+ now. The only ones that missed out on a save increase in some form are Black Knights.

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5 hours ago, Neil Arthur Hotep said:

Check the warscrolls again, Skeletons are on a 5+ now. The only ones that missed out on a save increase in some form are Black Knights.

The app (official compendium of up to date warscrolls) has them at 6+, looks like the battletome was an error :/

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5 hours ago, Cronotekk said:

The app (official compendium of up to date warscrolls) has them at 6+, looks like the battletome was an error :/

Maybe it is to deter the uninformed who think they might be worth buying...🤔

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On 6/1/2021 at 6:52 AM, KK9T said:

Use for Black Knights? Proxy as blood knights in friendly games until you get your blood knights. 😂

This is basically what I told a buddy who budgets.  Every five of his Black Knight proxies saves him $60.  Our club is chill so he won’t get static.  It also freed up money for new characters he wanted.  Total win.

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