Dark Elf Rant

By tristanmitchell

So, I’ve been playing against Mark’s Dark Elves for the last few weeks, and every battle, win or lose, has left me with the same infuriating conclusion – Hydras are stupid.


Creating a 7 attack, ST 5 monstrous creature with HATRED that has 2 handlers adding another 6 armor piercing attacks (with hatred too!) for 175 points was already ludicrous. Then the new edition of Warhammer was released and they gained Thunderstomp (another D6 ST 5 attacks at the end of each round of combat) and the ability to use their FIRE in COMBAT (adding another 2D6 ST 5 attacks, one use only). That made them pure insanity.

I can’t fault Mark for using them – I like to think I’d be the better man and not use them myself if I was able, but the reality is they are just too powerful to not use.

In our most recent battle I had a horde of 67 zombies receive an overcharge in the flank from a Hydra (After it had finished destroying a unit of 25 skeleton spearmen). In the single round of combat that it charged, he caused 21 wounds. TWENTY ONE WOUNDS from a 175 point model! Paired with my lovely unstable rule, he managed to destroy 67 wounds worth of unbreakable zombies in 2 rounds of combat. Sure, it was technically only a 150 point unit of zombies, but there are several other, more expensive troops, that would have died just as easily (anything WS<4, T3, 5+ save troops). Oh, and it only took 2 rounds of combat because I'm unbreakable - Any other unit would flee after being on the receiving end of 21 wounds! FOR ONE HUNDRED SEVENTY FIVE POINTS!
I would love to do the math hammer behind a dragon VS a hydra to see who’d win, the dragon costing almost twice as many points.

So. Any prospective Dark Elf players out there – If you want to win, get a hydra. Get as many as you can fit into the 25% rare allotment.
If you want to play for fun, don’t go near them! These things are completely broken right now and could easily be priced 50% higher or more and people would STILL find them amazing.

…While I’m ranting about Dark Elves, I thought of something else to bitch about!

There’s this magic item called “Pendant of Kaleth” that bestows immortality upon it’s bearer for a mere 30 points. Ok, ok, it’s not TRUE immortality, but I have yet to kill any hero with it!
You see, the Pendant of Kaleth allows any unsaved wound to be ignored if the bearer can roll equal to or under the strength of the attack that caused the wound.
So immediately, let’s think mathhammer – It’s pretty fair to say that 99% of wounds caused will be caused by an attack of strength 3 or greater, right? Which means this item has, at WORST a 50% chance of ignoring a wound. For THIRTY POINTS (Any other 4+ ward save item is priced at 45 points or greater). Now consider that it doesn’t count as a ward save. Or an armour save. Meaning that you can give it to a model that already has a 2+ armour save and 4+ ward save, so you’ve effectively created a character that has an 96% chance of ignoring any wound caused by a ST 3 attack. So – To punch that armour, hit with a higher strength! Throw a great weapon in there, or a lance – Attack at ST 5. We’ve reduced the armour save to only 4+ now, but the pure idiocy of the Pendant of Kaleth now ignores any wound caused by a ST 5 attack on a D6 roll of 5 or under. So, we’ve got an 96% chance of ignoring a wound caused at ST 5 too!

What does this mean in game terms? Well, a character with 3 wounds would need to be wounded 72 times before he would die – Regardless of the strength being 3, 4, or even 5! Technically, odds DO increase at strengths above 5, but only slightly… And this protection is offered for only 30 points! It’s just ridiculous.


  1. tristanmitchell April 2, 2012, 4:30 am

    Might have to confirm that Pendant of Kaleth can be used in addition to a ward save, but I’m pretty sure it can… I’ll re-read it next time I battle Mark and update this post.

    • tristanmitchell April 16, 2013, 5:20 pm

      Yes – the Pendant CAN be used in addition to a ward save.

  2. chris prine April 16, 2013, 5:10 pm

    I can tell you now, that the Hydra and the pendant are broken as hell…. Was at a 1500 point tournament just this Sunday. Was using an Empire gun Line…… Final game of the day was against a Dark Elf Player. He left most of his army at the back of the board, and charged me with purely a Hydra, Lord with a 1+ save and the pendant on a Coldone, and some BlackRiders going on my flank…. The Hydra kept on passing its regen, and the lord just wouldn’t die. I shot him with a steam tank, nothing. I rammed him with a steam tank, nothing. I shot 30 handgunners into him after the steam tank died, Nothing. The bastard just would not die. By the end of the game, he still had a wound left, after killing a steamtank, cannon, and 30 handgunners…. So, that Lord on its own, killed 650 points! His Dark Riders ran all the way around my flank, and charged through woods without taken any Dangerous terrain checks, which completely destroyed a unit of 10 handgunners and a VolleyGun I had placed near there to counter him… And the Hydra spent a turn hiding around a building, and then came running round while his Lord had my heavy shooters tied up and charged…… In all the game, all I managed to do was kill 3 BlackRiders, wound his Lord twice and slay the hydra in combat with 30 halberds

    • tristanmitchell April 16, 2013, 5:23 pm

      RIGHT?! Isn’t the pendant insane? You pretty much have to resort to attacks that remove models from play or do flat wounds (with no strength value).

      I’m thinking magic is the only way to do it. Lore of Death/Lore of Shadow character sniping spells.

      At least you killed the hydra – High Five for that!


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