Friday, June 07, 2013

Resurrecting the Craftworld- and my enthusiasm for 40k?

Eldar.  Pointy eared psychic death machines.

  • Clown suits.

  • Pointy helmets.

  • Monomolecular filament spewing projectors.

  • Distortion Cannons that open warp micro warp singularities to implode thier targets.

  • Pinnacle laser technology like Bright lances and Prism cannon.

  • The Falcon Grav tank,  the Vyper, awesome models.

  • Maugan Ra,  Jain Zar, The Eldar Avatar,  Solitaire, Death Jesters, Shadoweer,  Exarchs.

  • I even have a HUGE replica Wytchblade/Wailling Doom (which it is depends on who you ask lol) you can see it in my banner pic above.

Those were the reasons I started collecting Eldar in 1998.  Feels weird to think that its been 15 years now.   But Eldar actually got me into 40k, and back into wargaming.  Previously, I had only played Battletech and was an avid RPG player.   They also got me back into painting miniatures as it came at almost the same time I had to give up shooting at a professional level(it was tearing up my hands/wrists).

It all started innocently enough.  My freind Bill and I were bored on a Saturday night and he asked "Want to try some 40k?  I don't have all my minis here but we can figure something out."   He handed me the 2nd ed Eldar Codex to look at,  and went to grab his miniatures while I started to flip through the book- and learned about the challenges of the dying elite race- and I was like 'Fuck that, I can save these guys!'

That game,  by most current standards would be viewed as absurd.   I call it 'FloorHammer' since we played it on the apartment floor,  the 'terrain' was like a bizzare Alice in Wonderland assortment of coffee cups, small pots, and some VHS tapes for hills.   Yes- VHS tapes,  you younger readers can go look them up on Wikipedia.

And the 'battle' was between some Harelquins and Craftworld eldar-as that was the box of minis he had.   I think I ended up winning,  but the actual victory was how much fun we had. 

After that game Bill was like "So you enjoyed it?  Here, take these."  And he just gave me a batch of Harlequins.   I still have every single one of them.  I think a few trades later I ended up with the craftworld Eldar too,  then he got them back, then I got them again and I think we each have some now.    

For the next  4 or 5 years we played together and painted at least 2 or 3 times a month.  The monthly pre tournament painting frenzy was a common event.

But Im sentimental about my Eldar.   I don't care how bad GW jerks around other codexes.   Sure, I have like a million points of chaos and orks that are fun to convert.  But a bad codex for them is just a money issue.  I an get over having money taken away.   

The Eldar however-  the Eldar are my memories, happy memories of better times.  And the whole reason I got into 40k, and buy extension wargaming and back to miniature painting.

Not long after that- when I was avid about all things Eldar- the mysterious Eldar pirates got thier own army and were released as part of the 3rd Edition Boxed set!  And I of course was an early adopter of all things Dark Eldar.  Im not as nostalgic about them as my old Craftworld stuff- theres no history, but I still like them.

With that in mind,  I will set aside my usual 'GW is a bunch of money grubbing retards, and if you're a GW apologist poke yourself in the eye and hit the back button' "GW is bad mm'kay" and see if I can find some way to make the Eldar Codex work for me.

I've flipped through it, and chatted to a couple people that have it.   Now I want to get some discussion going on my miniatures, and how they can best be used within the new Codex.

One thing I am really, disappointed about is that the shuriken catapult remained 12" for guardians.  Even with the Run gimmick, it just gives them a hyped up pistol.  And thats absurd.  They have no buisness getting within 12" of anyone.  Guardians needed,  18" like Avengers.   Or take a step back in history and let them take lasblasters again.  They really need a stand off option that won't put them in assault range.    

So- to solve this troop issue- Guardians when used will be back field Platform teams.   When I need 'tactical' Troop selections I'll look to Avengers, and in my eyes the superior Dark Eldar Warrior- Battle Brother!

With DE Warriors to add flexibility to what my guardians can't do-the Troops selections should work fine.

This got me to thinking about which HQ to take with an allied detachment?  Theres alot of options, and it starts getting crazy- since theres so many Eldar goodies- you dont want to cut into those.   But theres obvious synergy units,  like Haemonculi adding FnP, you add the defense of Eldar psychic powers on top of that- and you start getting some really good options going.

So,  I haven't got the finer details nailed down- I need the codex for that.  But Im looking at a Farseer, and Guardian squad with platform(multiple if possible) for backfield objectives.  Dire Avengers.   Allied in, at least one squad of DE warriors with a Haemonculi(1-3, will ad more if I take other squads).  The DE  compulsory HQ will be tuned to fit whatever balance the army needs.   

For the rest- probly 700-800 pts  for a 2k list, would be the Fast Attack/Heavy/Elites.   Of which I have the full spread of Aspect warriors, several warwalkers, vypers(15 lol), falcons, serpents, prisms,  DE stuff out the wazoo.

And of course,  the old Harlequins- but I'm pretty sure they'll have the same stat line as the ones in the DE codex.  Which makes them hard to fit in most lists.

So, feedback!!  For those with the Codex, what 'old' Eldar stuff do you think is viable?   I don't really care about a theme,  I jsut want to dust off my old stuff and have fun with it again.   

I want to see the antique War Walkers and Wraithlords I have on their original SQUARE bases lol  and finally have a reason to put them on round ones-  not to mention repaint them and update them to useful weapon loadouts.

And just maybe-  get inspired to convert some 'Seers and do that epic Avatar paint job I've been putting off.

I figure the Eldar are supposed to be an ancient race- using my ancient miniatures (some of which are more than 20 years old!) is appropriate and makes a ready made '30k' Eldar Army lol