New Eldar Codex 6th Edition Review Warhammer 40k - Part 5
My name is Murphy and I'm back with Part 5 of my new Eldar Codex Review for 6th edition Warhammer 40k. Follow me on Twitter (@BenMurphy) to get notifications on new articles or maybe catch me at The Battlezone for a pick-up game? In this part, I will review the Fast Attack section of the army list. In addition to the fast Aspect Warriors that we've come to know over the last 20 years of playing Eldar, the 6th edition codex also includes some new units in the form of two new Flyers.
If you have not yet read my earlier 4 parts of the review, I suggest you start back at the beginning. You will find the link there to all the other parts, as I've already covered generic HQ choices, Troops, and Elite units.
- Click here to read New Eldar Codex Review 6th Edition Part 1 - Army Rules
- Click here to jump straight to New Eldar Codex Review 6th Edition Part 2 - HQ
The Eldar are synonymous with spead and lethality. The new Battle Focus army rule (run and shoot, or shoot and run) lends to that notion. Fast Attack options are the fastest of any army list, usually with a high volume of offensive output. How will the Eldar versions stack up, especially compared to the rest of the army that is already pretty fast! Let's find out.
Swooping Hawks are Jump Infantry with a host of special rules. Of course this means that they can move 12" in the Movement phase, jumping over intervening units and terrain. Combine this with Battle Focus and Fleet and Swooping Hawks will be moving 12" + d6 (with re-roll) and can still shoot. They have a set of additional rules and wargear. Here are some highlights:
- Aspect Armor (4+ save)
- Lasblaster - 24" Str 3 Assault 3
- Haywire Grenades (glance vehicles on 4+)
- Plasma Grenades
- Grenade Pack
- Herald of Victory
Those last three require some explanation. The grenade pack is awesome! If you arrive by Deepstrike, you can make a special shooting attack during that movement phase. Target an enemy unit 24" away (does not require line of sight). It's a Str 4 AP 4 attack with a blast, but if you have 6+ models in the unit, then it is a large blast. The Swooping Hawks can then make a shooting attack in the Shooting phase as normal. You must target the original unit if possible. I like this last part because if the first unit is destroyed or is not in line of sight, then you can shoot up another unit. Consider dropping grenades on an infantry unit and then landing on the far side of an enemy tank that will block line of sight. Shoot the tank and then assault with haywire grenades. Nice!
Skyleap is very cool. At the beginning of the Movement phase, you can "skyleap", which removes the Swooping Hawks from the table and places them in Ongoing Reserves. Units in Ongoing Reserves automatically come in the next turn and can deepstrike all over again (see grenade pack above). You just have to make sure that you don't do this on the last turn of the game because they will count as destroyed if they are off the table when the game ends.
Finally, with Herald of Victory, the Swooping Hawks do not scatter when they arrive via deep strike. No homing beacon required!
Of course, the Swooping Hawks can also take an Exarch, who has access to some cool wargear:
- Hawk's Talon - 24" Str 5 AP 5 assault 3
- Sunrifle - 24" Str 3 AP 3 assault 3 with Blind
He can also take up to 2 of the following Exarch Powers:
- Night Vision
- Marksman's Eye (5+ precision shots, remember)
- Hit & Run
The internet is pretty excited about Swooping Hawks. Deep strike them near some cover (they wont scatter), drop grenades on some infantry, blast the same infantry with lasblasters, and then run into the cover for protection. If they survive the enemy shooting phase, have them jump out of cover and assault a tank with haywire grenades. If not targets are near, then Skyleap and repeat next turn. Or you can use them as standard jump troops and jump them around the board firing at weak targets to finish them off. A five man unit can pump out 15 shots, which will usually be enough to finish off those pesky one or two surviving models.
One word: mono-filament. Alright, that sounds like two words smashed together. Regardless, it's a word that Warhammer 40k gamers will remember from 20 years earlier, such is the havoc that the Warp Spiders wrought across tabletops. In 6th edition, Warp Spiders are back and are better than ever!
They are Jetpack Infantry, but also have the special Warp Pack Generator. I will include its special rule in italics below:
- May deep strike.
- Move 6" in Movement phase and can "jump" over units/terrain or walk as normal.
- OR may warp jump 6 + 2d6" in the Movement phase, ignoring dangerous terrain. If any double is rolled, then remove one member as a casualty (no save!).
- May run and shoot in the Shooting phase with Battle Focus
- May then make a Thrust Move of 2d6" in the Assault phase (if they are not locked in combat or charging.
Even without using the risky warp jump, they will be moving 6" + d6" Run (re-roll) + 2d6" jetpack. That's pretty fast for infantry! They aren't just fast, though, they are tough and hit hard. Let's see what else they have going for them:
- Heavy Aspect Armor (3+ save)
- Death Spinners - 12" Str 6, AP - monofilament: If target's initiative if 3 or lower (or has no initiative, these weapons are +1 Str. On all models To Wound rolls of a 6 are auto-wound and are AP 1.
- Hit & Run
Their Exarch can take:
- twin-linked Death Spinner
- Spinneret Rifle - 18" Str 6 AP 1 rapid fire, Pinning
- Pair of Power Blades - +1 Attack for two weapons and AP 3
He can take up to 2 of the following powers:
- Fast Shot
- Marksman's Eye
- Stalker - in a challenge, roll off and add your Initiative. If you win, you can re-roll To Wound dice.
On one hand, I was hoping that the death spinners would be template weapons, but a 12" range is a little safer and the high strength means you will be inflicting wounds on most everything. I love the warp jump generators because it will allows just a little more speed than your opponent might expect, especially with the ability to run and jet-pack afterwards. How cool would it be to warp-jump within range of an enemy, shred him with death spinners, and then run away d6" (re-roll) and then move further away 2d6" with jetpacks. Use this to chain together strikes turn after turn and your opponent will really be frustrated.
Combine that with the Exarch taking the spinneret rifle and both Fast Shot and Marksman's Eye. He will be getting 2 shots (3 shots if in rapid fire range) at Str 6 and AP 1, with precision shots on a 5+. Use that to take out standard bearers, powerfist sergeants, heavy weapons, etc. Alternately, versus vehicles he will be Strength 7 with an AP 1 weapon. Versus side or rear armor (not hard to reach with mobility or deep striking) there is a high chance to make tanks go boom.
For some reason, I always forget about Shining Spears. They are a cool idea, lance wielding jetbike riders, but I rarely remember to include them in the list of Aspect Warriors. Maybe it was the prohibitive cost of fielding bike units when I was younger that made me skip over them in favor of cheaper infantry. For whatever reason, I would be making a big mistake if I forgot them in 6th edition. Let's check them out:
- Eldar Jetbikes with twin-linked shuriken catapults and all their movement/Jink abilities.
- + 1 Toughness (of course)
- Heavy Aspect armor (3+ save)
- Skilled Rider
- Laser Lance
The Laser Lance is both a shooting and a melee weapon. In shooting, it is 6" Str 6 AP 3 Assault 1, Lance (treats all AV as no more than 12). In melee, on the charge, it is +3 Str, AP 3. Lance.
The Exarch can be given:
- power weapon
- Star Lance - same idea as a laser lance, but it is Str 8 and AP 2
He may also take up to two of the following powers:
- Monster Hunter (re-roll wounds versus Monstrous Creatures)
- Disarming Strike
- Hit & Run
Imagine what a unit of 6 of these can do to infantry: Move within 6" and open up with their laser lance / star lance shooting attack. That's 6 shots at Str 6/8 at AP 3/2. You will likely kill 3 - 4 space marines. Then assault and you are throwing down 13 dice with the same stats, hitting probably 7 times, wounding and killing 5-6. It's possible to wipe out an entire squad of space marines in your turn.
However, the biggest problem with Shining Spears is that their melee attacks are only that powerful on the charge. They will not survive a drawn out affair. Give the Exarch Hit & Run and you should be able to escape on your opponent's Assault Phase, to charge another unit or run back in and finish them off on your own turn.
Fast Aspect Warriors
Which of the 3 Aspect Warriors here do you like most?
Fast Attack Vehicles
I've covered the Aspect Warriors found in the Fast Attack section of the new Eldar Codex 6th edition. I've loving what I see. Did I not say that each choice would be fast and lethal? I didn't lie!
Now we must move on to the rest of the Fast Attack choices: Vyper Squadrons and the two new flyers: Crimson Hunters and Hemlock Wraithfighters! The Crimson Hunter specializes in killing other flyers (and ground vehicles, I suppose), while the Hemlock Wratihfighter specializes at killing troops and sending them scattering.
I am out of room for this article, so I am starting another one immediately! Follow the link to read about the rest of the Fast Attack section:
In the mean time, please take the poll above and leave a comment below this article. I always respond and we've had great discussion so far on my other Eldar articles. If you are tired of the Eldar (what?!) why not read one of my other Warhammer 40k 6th edition articles or visit my personal blog so you can see what I've been up to?