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Horde-Busters


WoollyMammoth

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As a death player I rely heavily on hordes (skeleton, zombie, ghoul). Many other armies get size based bonuses and require a lot of models as well (witch aelves, free peoples, skaven)

Hordes are a great way to mass a lot of attacks to overwhelm or get through heavy defenses, if you are up to the challenge of painting 30+ models per unit.  

Unfortunately, certain units or models are powerful Horde-Busters, able to easily and reliably cause a lot of wounds all at once. Of course there are various strategies, wear them down over time, give them debuffs, hit them hard and fast, but certain things are just obliteraters of hordes that need to be carefully managed. For those of you having hordes, or those of you who have melted a horde, I need some advice on what to look out for (and avoid) in my future games.

Known threats:

Drycha - her shooting attack can kill 66% of all models within 10".
- You need to keep her very far from your hordes if possible, or at least spread way out to limit the number of models she can hit. At the very least try to get a few wounds on her to lower the potency of the attack.

Arkhan - His curse of years spell can kill an entire unit.
- Its extremely difficult to stop him from casting, so the spell will likely go off. All you can do is hope it doesn't get lucky endless rolls to kill your entire unit.

I'm sure there is a lot more but I cant think of any and I need some advice.

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I am playing Stormcast Eternals so.........

 

5 or more Decimators (without starsoul maces). They get 1 attack for every model within 2'' of a decimator. If the horde models are placed close to each other, its 7-9 attacks for each decimator, so its like 40 dice at 3/3/-1/1 with 7-9 of them at 3/2/-1/1 effectively 20+ wounds plus a +2 to battleshock roll for the horde.

 

Desolators, if 6 of them, 36 dice at 4/3/-1/2 , effectively 12 dice meaning 24 wounds, plus the dracoth attacks , so 8 wounds more, making them 32 wounds.(not counting a roll of 6 to wound)

All wounds are calculated without save rolls. Decimators and Desolators are without buff. 

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Desolators are not particularly good at killing Hordes; they do the same damage no matter how large the enemy unit. For 720 points they better do a lot of damage!

Stegadon with sunfire throwers get 1 attack for each model within 8" range against one unit.

1 in 3 Kroxigors can be equipped with a Moon Hammer that gets 1 attack for each enemy in its 2" range.

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Actually Gaunt Summoners do it on a 4. So on single wound units they cut them in half.

Khorne has a few good counters including skarr bloodwrath and their sheer number of attacks. The Kunnin Rukk produces enough shots to level them as well

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2 hours ago, erasercrumbs said:

The Plagueclaw is pretty vicious against hordes, especially slow ones that have trouble making up the distance.  Tearing apart big units is basically what it is meant to do.  Ironic that the Skaven have access to such a good anti-horde machine.

Skaven are one of those armies with everything.

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Thanks for the tips

To a unit of 30...

This is total death:
Drycha averages 20 mortal wounds if she can get everything within 10"
Gaunt summoner causes 15 mortal wounds if he can cast his 8 spell
Decimators will cause something like 24 wounds at -1
Skarr is going to cause something like 20 wounds at -1

This is bad but not crazy:
A Stegadon can do something like 14 wounds within 8"
A Gyrocopter causes 10 wounds at -1 rend if it can get within 6"
A plagueclaw catapult has a decent chance to cause 8 wounds at -2 rend
One Kroxigor is not going to be too bad
 

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The lesser used Stardrake breath 'Roiling Thunderhead' is 1 mw for every 6 on a dice. You roll as many dice as there are models in the unit.

That's not very impressive but there are a few more attacks to come in combat phase, eating to start with (3 handpicked models, so champion, banner bearer, musician), rider's attacks, drakes attacks, then the tail sweep (which is pretty much guaranteed on bigger units) for d3 on each unit within 3".

Then the Lord Celestant version has his reflecting mortal wounds shield for all units within 3".

For the points it's probably not going to be selected as a 'horde killer' (you could take 15 decimators instead) but can do respectable damage.

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13 hours ago, erasercrumbs said:

The Plagueclaw is pretty vicious against hordes, especially slow ones that have trouble making up the distance.  Tearing apart big units is basically what it is meant to do.  Ironic that the Skaven have access to such a good anti-horde machine.

Is it? Fluff wise it's the faction with the most infighting. :D 

It's even the favourite spell of the Grey Seers: 26" range, select a unit, roll a die per model, every six is a mortal wound.  

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10 hours ago, Riavan said:

 

Skaven are one of those armies with everything.

Yeah I think so too. But than again they are also divided in 6(!) subfactions. So in this new system you are in fact picking from different Chaos factions. In that mind-set Destruction and Order have everything as well. (Don't play Death so wouldn't know). 

So I think it's just a mind set. When playing my dwarfs, ogors, dark elves or Skaven I only pick everything from the old armies and ignore the factions in that sense. So for me it's probably also time for a paradigm shift. 

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13 hours ago, WoollyMammoth said:

Thanks for the tips

To a unit of 30...

This is total death:
Drycha averages 20 mortal wounds if she can get everything within 10"
Gaunt summoner causes 15 mortal wounds if he can cast his 8 spell
Decimators will cause something like 24 wounds at -1
Skarr is going to cause something like 20 wounds at -1

This is bad but not crazy:
A Stegadon can do something like 14 wounds within 8"
A Gyrocopter causes 10 wounds at -1 rend if it can get within 6"
A plagueclaw catapult has a decent chance to cause 8 wounds at -2 rend
One Kroxigor is not going to be too bad
 

Formations may be your friend here.  Marking a horde a dart instead of a blob will reduce the effectiveness of spells or attacks targeting models.  The horde's job will not be to kill those units anyway, but to mitigate their loses and slow them if necessary.  Priority being to avoid if at all possible.

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