Thursday, November 11, 2010

The Phoenix Court of Khaine pt 7: The Avatar of Khaine

He is the fury of the Eldar psyche unleashed. He is the embodiment of war and death. He is the Avatar of Kaela Mensha Khaine the bloody handed god of the Eldar. The Avatar is a bestial engine of destruction. He inspires all Eldar around him with thoughts of bloodshed and compels them to new heights of heroism and resolve.
The Avatar is my second favorite HQ. Actually for one reason, he makes units fearless. This may seem like a small thing compared to his relatively low points cost, Ability to lay waste to units and vehicles alike either shooting or in close combat and his nigh unto indestructibility, thanks to Fortune and an invulnerably save. Making units fearless is no small thing though, especially when you run lots of guardians, as I often do.
The Avatar can be a literal lynch pin in holding objectives and holding back the tide of the enemy. Large units of Guardians can be very hard to wipe out when they are fearless and preferably in cover, although a conceal will do in a pinch. I like to put the Avatar between two units of Guardians and form a wall that protects the rest of my foot advancing units. The mobile units can then do hit and run attacks on priority targets. You can't ignore 30 to 40 Guardians advancing with the Avatar between them. In scenario set ups that allow you to get close quick, massed shuriken catapult fire can be very devastating, especially if the units have been guided and or the target units have been doomed. Guardian storm units can be very devastating too when the Warlock with them has Enhance. They are then quicker and on even footing with most units. Throw the Avatar into the mix and you have a close combat that is not enjoyable for your opponent.
Kari Christensen © 2006 Games Workshop
As we all know the Avatar is immune to flame and melta weapons, including inferno cannons. This works to your advantage in a couple of different ways. First it makes placement of units with these weapons predictable. Why have your vet or chosen unit loaded with melta go after the big guy immune to the weapons? This allows you to plan your deployment to cover tanks and such with troops that will have no issue taking these units out. This also lets you lure these melta units in with a tempting target so you can wipe them out. Eldar strategy, to me anyways, is always a one two punch with a little bit of a psych out. Its a set up and knock down with a feint worked in just to keep your opponent guessing. The second advantage, kind of, is that the Avatar will take fire from the other big guns, such as battle cannons, manticores demolishers, lascannons and of course the Plasma guns that those Imperials love so much. So it is important to make sure you have a seer close at hand to fortune the big guy. This keeps these weapons from hitting the rest of your army. Smart players will see thru the ruse, although they will still try and take the Avatar and Guardian units out as he really can't ignore them.
The ultimate power of the Avatar is unleashed when you use him in an Apocalypse game. Although expensive the Phoenix Court of Khaine formation is awesome. All 6 Phoenix Lords with the Avatar. His aura and melta blast shooting attack double in range, he becomes immune to that nasty plasma and he gets an additional attack for every Phoenix Lord within 6 inches. Its is a very brightly colored Death star.
I field the Avatar quite a bit. He is a nice alternative to a Phoenix lord or second seer as he contributes to the army. He can kill his points in enemy troops without issue. He also enhances your units without any rolling required.
In my battle report coming later in the week I will detail the Avatar and his performance against the Green tide army I fought. He killed his points in ork boyz and them some. Also I will detail my Adepticon List development. I am bound and determined to use Swooping hawks although Baharoth may be left out in favor of the Avatar. It is a toss up.

So until next time.......

Blood Runs, Anger Rises, Death Wakes, War Calls!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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