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Author Topic: Crying through an eye-patch- Eldar Corsairs in 8th edition.  (Read 431 times)

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Offline Aurics Pride

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Crying through an eye-patch- Eldar Corsairs in 8th edition.
« on: October 25, 2017, 05:50:17 PM »
Hey guys,
So in a follow up to my previous articles about using Corsair armies/units in 7th edition I figured that I would make a follow up article for 8th edition. Expect there to be a copious amount of salt and disappointment…… I’ll just try and keep the language family friendly!

What happened to the Corsairs in 8th?
So in 7th edition whilst GW were focussing on making Scatterspam craftworlders insanely good and coming up with ways of making them better *Cough* Ynarri *Cough* Forgeworld were trying their hardest to help us piratical types with the Corsair army list from the Doom of Mymeara book. This was a generally very popular list and one that certainly sat close to my heart as although it had it’s flaws they had done such a great job of capturing the feel and the theme of the corsairs.
Then 8th edition happened…….
8th Edition hurt Corsair players, and I mean hurt as in a whole unit of D-Scythes to the face sort of hurt.
Gone are the Coterie rules and their own detachment, gone are the Corsair Prince, Void Dreamer, Baron, Malevolents, Ghostwalkers, Voidstorms and Balestrikes gone are a lot of their interesting wargear.
All the Corsairs have been left with are The Corsair Cloud Dancer band, Corsair Reavers and Corsair Skyreavers (previously the same unit selection as Reavers). You have the vehicles that are available to the Craftworlders (Hornets, Warp Hunters, Wasps etc) available to you as well but there are no HQ choices for you to be able to build a detachment and there are no Elites or Heavy Support to fill one up……. All you have is a single Fast attack choice and two Troops choices who were previously the same entry.

So what is left for Corsair players?
So the three units that you are left with have not been changed massively in terms of composition although their rules have changed somewhat.
All three units have kept the old Corsair unique special rules of “Dancing on the blade’s edge” and “Reckless abandon” although these have both changed considerably.
Dancing on the blades edge:
In 7th edition this rule had no real upside for the Corsair player, the lower leadership represented their indiscipline. In this edition this rule is actually a lot more helpful, it improves your chances of passing any morale tests that you need to take although does make it more damaging should you fail. With the decent Eldar leadership and the fact that you likely aren’t going to be using any large units of Corsairs this is actually pretty helpful.
Reckless abandon
This rule has been massively changed since 7th edition. In 7th this was your replacement for battle focus, it allowed you a free movement after shooting whether it be in your shooting phase or on overwatch. This was easily exploited and was definitely somewhat overpowered (particularly on the overwatch movement). In 8th edition however it has now been massively weakened and now offers a much smaller movement (less than half your normal movement speed) after the unit has inflicted at least one casualty in overwatch. This is still useful but nothing compared to the previous edition and unfortunately quite a lot weaker than the battle focus that your craftworld friends have access to.

The Units
So then, the units themselves….. As I have mentioned the only unique Corsair units left available are the Corsair Reaver Band (Guardian equivalents), Corsair Skyreaver Band (Guardians with Jump packs) and Corsair Cloud dancer band (Jetbikes).
Corsair Reaver Band:
These guys are still the basic infantry of the Corsair forces, very similar to the Craftworld Eldar Guardians. They have the same stat-line as the Guardians although with a lower leadership, they do however have access to a wider range of weaponry and do have access to the fairly awesome Brace of pistols.
All Reavers come with a Lasblaster and Brace of pistols as standard and the Lasblaster can be changed out for either a Shard carbine, a Shuriken catapult or a spar glaive (Close combat weapon). One in every 5 models in the unit has access to the range of special and heavy weapons (Shredder, Blaster, Fusion Gun, Flamer, Dark Lance, Shuriken Cannon, Missile Launcher, Splinter Cannon).
These guys are in a slightly odd place, they are more expensive than Guardians although they are no more survivable and unfortunately due to not having the craftworld keyword they can’t gain any of the benefits such as the Autarch’s path of command trait. In terms of firepower they aren’t really able to do anything that Guardian defenders or Kabalite warriors cannot do.
Corsair Sky Reaver Band
So much like 7th edition these guys are basically just the same as the Reaver band but with Jetpacks!
The Corsair jetpacks have had a big change from 7th edition. They now give an increased movement characteristic on your stats profile. Unfortunately this is a big change from 7th edition and not for the good…… The only real way to use Corsair Reavers in 7th edition was to make use of the Deep Strike (With Fusion Guns/Flamers and the Sky Burners Coterie trait) and then to use your Reckless abandon and Jump pack assault moves to get yourself out of harms way. These tactics are now no longer available to you, the Sky Reavers are now much less survivable as to get into the effective range for most of the Corsair weapons you are getting yourself into rapid fire boltgun/assaulting range. The loss of ‘Relentless’ on the jet packs is also a huge hit as although in 8th they can shoot heavy weapons whilst moving they suffer from the usual negative modifier on their accuracy.
Corsair Cloud Dancer Band
Jetbikes, who doesn’t love jetbikes? Think Craftworld jetbikes but with a Brace of pistols, the Corsair special rules and access to dissonance cannons, Dark Lances and Splinter cannons in addition to the Scatter Laser and Shuriken Cannon of their Craftworld brothers.
Dissonance Cannons have actually become fairly useful in this edition, whilst still not the most points efficient weapon they now have a half decent strength and AP (with the potential to increase with the right rolls) and a potential for multi wound damage. In 7th edition they were pretty much a complete no-go, easily beaten out by Scatterlasers and Splinter cannons for effectiveness they were a very tough choice to justify.
The Cloud Dancers are one unit that I could actually see being a useful addition to a Craftworld army, with access to Dark Lances in addition to the usual heavy weapons this adds a potential anti-tank threat, the only downside is the loss of accuracy for shooting heavy weapons in 8th, even when it’s mounted on a jetbike!

But I still want to use Corsairs……
If this is the case then you seriously have my respect!
If you are wanting to use Corsairs units then bear in mind they have now become more of a complementary addition to an Aeldari army. Unable to use them as a standalone force you are either given the options of using a Drukhari or Craftworlds army that you’ve ‘themed’ to fit the Corsairs theme or you are going to have to use them as an allied addition to a Craftworld or Drukhari army you already have.
One big issue with this is that the Corsairs do not have either the Drukhari or Craftworld keywords, meaning that A) They do not gain any of the bonuses from units like the Autarch whose traits benefit nearby units bearing the keyword or B) They do not gain the benefits from any strategems etc that are due to come out in the upcoming codices (and potentially may cause clashes in the detachments due to them not having a craftworld keyword). As it stands the Corsair’s only real place is as an addition to an index Craftworld or Drukhari force and with the upcoming Eldar codex and hopefully very soon the Dark Eldar codex it leaves the Corsairs in a very strange spot.
Unfortunately the Corsair units also have the problem that there are options in the Craftworlds and Drukhari books that are A) Better at doing their particular jobs B) More points efficient.
In 7th edition the ability to use their jetpacks and reckless abandon moves to make hit and run attacks made Corsair Reaver bands a very interesting prospect and one when used well negated their overall squishyness and could be used to some quite devastating effect. Unfortunately with the changes in 8th edition these tactics are no longer possible and you would probably be more prudent to put your points into units such as Fire Dragons who are not only more survivable but also able to put out a considerably higher amount of damage.
The Future
So where does that leave us devout Corsair players? Without even an index list of our own and with the Craftworlds codex dropping and Drukhari codex expected shortly we are soon running out of options.
Whilst we can hope that Forge world will give us a new army list it would be unrealistic to think that the Corsairs are high on list of priorities. Our current options are to use a Craftworlds list but potentially lose the very good Craftworld traits so that we can use our Corsair units (when there are better ones in the codex, especially with the traits…..) or to use them with a Drukhari or Ynarri army.
I dearly hope that further plans are in motion behind the scenes to bring back some options for the Corsairs but unfortunately we are heading towards having to use “Counts as” craftworld armies and building the narrative ourselves to justify pirate Fire Dragons/ Wraithguard etc. This is truly a great shame firstly to lose such a characterful army that the Corsairs were in 7th edition but also to have such great models go unused and gathering dust in cases and cardboard boxes…….
Let’s hope that our Drukhari cousins can continue raiding and pillaging as good pirates do even if the true pirates are no longer able to.
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Offline magenb

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Re: Crying through an eye-patch- Eldar Corsairs in 8th edition.
« Reply #1 on: October 25, 2017, 07:21:05 PM »
yeah they really missed the boat on Corsairs. While it would be nice to have some thing offical, I think we'll have to go back to making a custom rule set for friendly games. Given how in 7th they were basically DE with access to CWE kit, it might not be too hard to build them back up again.

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Re: Crying through an eye-patch- Eldar Corsairs in 8th edition.
« Reply #2 on: October 25, 2017, 09:28:54 PM »
I think you'll need to wait for them to expand the range. They only translated over rules for models they created.

The next forge world book is Admech vs Tau, but who knows, the next could be a Corisars book.

Until then, you have the two other aldari factions to proxy from.

As long as you keep the corisars and craftworld units in different detachments, the craftworlders can still get all their benefits. So, you'll need to have some rando HQ to lead the (corisar battalion?) and then your other two detachments can be whatever craftworld you want.

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Offline Cavalier

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Re: Crying through an eye-patch- Eldar Corsairs in 8th edition.
« Reply #3 on: October 26, 2017, 10:08:14 AM »
Great article AP. While I never played using the actual Corsair rules, I was building towards that in the end of 7th and now that dream is gone. I've got Voidstorm, Balestrikes, Ghostwalkers, Corsair Venoms all of which I made. So in the end, not only is the FW Index total crap IMO, they absolutely gutted one of the most interesting armies to emerge in 7th and effectively trashed the prospect of all the units we all spent so much time and money kitbashing into existence. I think FW did a major disservice to its fans and customers and has dropped the ball dismally. I can only think that if Alan Bligh had not passed away this would not have happened. I'm usually quite soft on GW+FW but this is one of the biggest slaps in the face ever delivered IMO.

However! IMO all is not lost. I actually think that what remains is quite useful (though not foot based Corsair Reavers). IMO Ynnari Corsairs have the potential to be SUPER good. I think MSU units of Skyreavers with Shuriken Catapults or Shardcarbines, flying side by side with Shuriken Cannon Jetbikes (or perhaps dark lance bikes), with perhaps a unit of Wraithguard rocking D-Scythes is a NASTY combination.

Opponents can target the Skyreavers which will generate soulbursts for other nearby units (Soulbursts kicked out to Dark Lance Jetbikes could be super nasty). Ignore them and potentially eat a boat load of shuriken or splinter fire in the subsequent turns.

Personally I'm going to run 3x5 Shuriken + Flamer Skyreavers, supported by 2-3x Shuriken Cannon Bikes, riding alongside a Wave Serpent full of Wraithguard (with the Visarch and Yvraine), Wyches and Incubi in Raiders as the main thrust of my army. Meanwhile I'll have Hornets, my Balestrike Band (now Scourges with Dark Lances), and Dark Reapers (Corsairs with with Eldar Missile Launchers) holding it down in the backfield.

If you really wanted, I think you could go something like 6x Skyreaver (3x with Shuriken Catapults, 3x with Shard Carbines), then 6x Corsair Jetbikes (3x Shuriken Cannons or Splinter Cannons, then 3x Dark Lances) and have a really deadly army that is MOSTLY Corsairs.

Small foot print, tons of anti-infantry, very solid anti-tank, and all of which could trigger devastating soulbursts not only on the offense but ESPECIALLY on the defense. If you had 3x Dark Lance Jetbikes, all riding close your opponent is gonna be scared to freaking shoot you!

If you can avoid any first turn charges it should be a very solid army, especially in the early goings.

Well those are my initial impressions. I'm actually running a Ynnari/Corsair battalion this saturday so I'll report in with my findings after that.

Anyway great article AP. I have hopes that the Corsairs will not be ignored forever. Something I thought of last night. Did you ever notice how similar the Coterie system is to the 8th ed Detachments? Perhaps some of this was designed with 8th in mind.... Lets just see. Plus they still have Corsair Coterie Keywords just sitting there. Until then though, I'll definitely be working alongside you to figure out a way to make these bad boys work again. Knives for Lives! Corsairs shall rise again!
« Last Edit: October 26, 2017, 10:10:51 AM by Cavalier »
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Offline Aurics Pride

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Re: Crying through an eye-patch- Eldar Corsairs in 8th edition.
« Reply #4 on: October 26, 2017, 03:37:15 PM »
I think you'll need to wait for them to expand the range. They only translated over rules for models they created.

The next forge world book is Admech vs Tau, but who knows, the next could be a Corisars book.

Until then, you have the two other aldari factions to proxy from.

As long as you keep the corisars and craftworld units in different detachments, the craftworlders can still get all their benefits. So, you'll need to have some rando HQ to lead the (corisar battalion?) and then your other two detachments can be whatever craftworld you want.

That is exactly what has happened and to be honest the reason why I think that 8th edition is possibly the Death-knell for the Corsairs. Prior to 7th finishing Forgeworld had already stopped production of the Corsair conversion pack (leaving only the heavy weapons kit). The Forgeworld index entries are solely there so that people have some rules to use their expensive models!
I very much doubt that we will see a Corsair book any time soon, although a very good list they were not massively popular and as this index shows, there was not a huge deal of support for them (Hence all of the units without models).

Great article AP. While I never played using the actual Corsair rules, I was building towards that in the end of 7th and now that dream is gone. I've got Voidstorm, Balestrikes, Ghostwalkers, Corsair Venoms all of which I made. So in the end, not only is the FW Index total crap IMO, they absolutely gutted one of the most interesting armies to emerge in 7th and effectively trashed the prospect of all the units we all spent so much time and money kitbashing into existence. I think FW did a major disservice to its fans and customers and has dropped the ball dismally. I can only think that if Alan Bligh had not passed away this would not have happened. I'm usually quite soft on GW+FW but this is one of the biggest slaps in the face ever delivered IMO.

However! IMO all is not lost. I actually think that what remains is quite useful (though not foot based Corsair Reavers). IMO Ynnari Corsairs have the potential to be SUPER good. I think MSU units of Skyreavers with Shuriken Catapults or Shardcarbines, flying side by side with Shuriken Cannon Jetbikes (or perhaps dark lance bikes), with perhaps a unit of Wraithguard rocking D-Scythes is a NASTY combination.

Opponents can target the Skyreavers which will generate soulbursts for other nearby units (Soulbursts kicked out to Dark Lance Jetbikes could be super nasty). Ignore them and potentially eat a boat load of shuriken or splinter fire in the subsequent turns.

Personally I'm going to run 3x5 Shuriken + Flamer Skyreavers, supported by 2-3x Shuriken Cannon Bikes, riding alongside a Wave Serpent full of Wraithguard (with the Visarch and Yvraine), Wyches and Incubi in Raiders as the main thrust of my army. Meanwhile I'll have Hornets, my Balestrike Band (now Scourges with Dark Lances), and Dark Reapers (Corsairs with with Eldar Missile Launchers) holding it down in the backfield.

If you really wanted, I think you could go something like 6x Skyreaver (3x with Shuriken Catapults, 3x with Shard Carbines), then 6x Corsair Jetbikes (3x Shuriken Cannons or Splinter Cannons, then 3x Dark Lances) and have a really deadly army that is MOSTLY Corsairs.

Small foot print, tons of anti-infantry, very solid anti-tank, and all of which could trigger devastating soulbursts not only on the offense but ESPECIALLY on the defense. If you had 3x Dark Lance Jetbikes, all riding close your opponent is gonna be scared to freaking shoot you!

If you can avoid any first turn charges it should be a very solid army, especially in the early goings.

Well those are my initial impressions. I'm actually running a Ynnari/Corsair battalion this saturday so I'll report in with my findings after that.

Anyway great article AP. I have hopes that the Corsairs will not be ignored forever. Something I thought of last night. Did you ever notice how similar the Coterie system is to the 8th ed Detachments? Perhaps some of this was designed with 8th in mind.... Lets just see. Plus they still have Corsair Coterie Keywords just sitting there. Until then though, I'll definitely be working alongside you to figure out a way to make these bad boys work again. Knives for Lives! Corsairs shall rise again!

Agreed on the Ynarri Corsairs, they are also actually the only unit entries that keeps their special rules if you read the Ynarri army book entry....
The Jetbikes I could definitely see having a place in Craftworld/Drukhari/Ynarri armies due to the availability of the Dark Lances. The Corsair Reavers I am not so sold on, I find that the Sky Reavers are fast and can keep up well with the Jetbikes/Raiders/Wave Serpents but for the points they are pretty expensive Soulburst fuel and for a damage to points point of view there are many units that can do each job more effectively.
I will be trying to find a way to use these guys as I adore the models and have always loved the fluff but GW certainly aren't making it easy!

My current hope is that they realise that the Forgeworld Xenos index is absolutely awful and that a bit of uproar causes them to bring the Eldar units forward in their production schedule for a refresh. Sadly though I think that Forgeworld are very much looking to the future rather than on models already produced.
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Offline magenb

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Re: Crying through an eye-patch- Eldar Corsairs in 8th edition.
« Reply #5 on: November 2, 2017, 10:32:54 PM »
My current hope is that they realise that the Forgeworld Xenos index is absolutely awful and that a bit of uproar causes them to bring the Eldar units forward in their production schedule for a refresh. Sadly though I think that Forgeworld are very much looking to the future rather than on models already produced.

Stuck in the 30k at the moment, but curious to see if the simply redo DoM or a brand new campaign... I mean people have got to be sick of paying for the same book lol.

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Re: Crying through an eye-patch- Eldar Corsairs in 8th edition.
« Reply #6 on: November 3, 2017, 06:48:33 AM »
G'day forumites!
Have read all this stuff before the 8th ed rules came out. Then the same before the indexes came out. Now am reading the exact same paranoia with the Corsairs. Is there a preview that I've missed that says the AI-Xenox is the final ruling? Bad business if that is the case. 

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Re: Crying through an eye-patch- Eldar Corsairs in 8th edition.
« Reply #7 on: November 3, 2017, 07:44:08 AM »
FW is definitely having issues. They've delayed another big Heresy Book (just got that in my email this morning). I'm thoroughly disappointed as long time FW customer. GW said that FW is gonna be covered in Chapter Approved, so I hope they tidy things up there.

Also I did get in my first game with my Skyreavers and I was not disappointed. The game only went 3 turns and they weren't in range of anything turn 1 but as I suspected they did go ignored in favor of the Jetbikes.

What surprised me was how they benefited from Soulburst. Kicking out 8 extra shots + the d6 flamers (which I rolled very hot on) was super nice. Their mobility was pretty shocking too. You see it on paper and its one thing, but actually moving the unit on the tabletop is another.

Their only targets were T5 Librarians so it was a bad matchup (but they were the only infantry in the game  ::) ) but the potential was certainly there and they acquitted themselves well.

While I'm gonna be diving more into CWE going forward they are gonna be my go-to for Ynnari troops in a battalion no questions asked... especially if Ynnari are gonna pay index prices for everything like what has been hinted by the guys from Frontline
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Re: Crying through an eye-patch- Eldar Corsairs in 8th edition.
« Reply #8 on: November 3, 2017, 08:36:03 AM »
G'day all!
Games Workshop made a lot of changes from indexes to codexes so far. Why are we assuming FW won't do the same. They would lose a lot of customers if they did not follow GW's structure. 

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Re: Crying through an eye-patch- Eldar Corsairs in 8th edition.
« Reply #9 on: November 3, 2017, 05:13:23 PM »
G'day all!
Games Workshop made a lot of changes from indexes to codexes so far. Why are we assuming FW won't do the same. They would lose a lot of customers if they did not follow GW's structure.

They might, but their team is super tiny. The Focus of Forge World is Horus Heresy, so they can't devote as many resources to 40k. Although, they are working on a new Forge World book with Tau Vs Ad-mech, which should be really cool.

FW is definitely having issues. They've delayed another big Heresy Book (just got that in my email this morning). I'm thoroughly disappointed as long time FW customer. GW said that FW is gonna be covered in Chapter Approved, so I hope they tidy things up there.


I have no issue with the delay in the Age of Darkness book. It's basically a clean up of the 7th edition rulebook, and if they spot any errors, best delay the product then release an errata right away. This is exactly the sort of thing people complain about GW for, errors in the books.

I'm happy they decided to release a better product, then rushing something out. Especially that they made a nice article about it too.

Really, how Forge World has been handling Horus Heresy is amazing. The big red books are phenomenal. The background, art and campaign rules are all extremely well done.

But, they have a small team, so you can tell that is where their focus lies.

I can imagine that they wont release codex's like 40k does, but will probably update their rules in future Imperial Armour books (or re-releases with updated rules). I know the next announced IA book is Tau vs Admech and imperials, so we'll see the first FW updates with that book.

But, I'd rather they get the next HH book done first! I wanna see what they do with Signus Prime!
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Re: Crying through an eye-patch- Eldar Corsairs in 8th edition.
« Reply #10 on: November 4, 2017, 05:32:29 AM »
FW is definitely having issues. They've delayed another big Heresy Book (just got that in my email this morning). I'm thoroughly disappointed as long time FW customer. GW said that FW is gonna be covered in Chapter Approved, so I hope they tidy things up there.

Also I did get in my first game with my Skyreavers and I was not disappointed. The game only went 3 turns and they weren't in range of anything turn 1 but as I suspected they did go ignored in favor of the Jetbikes.

What surprised me was how they benefited from Soulburst. Kicking out 8 extra shots + the d6 flamers (which I rolled very hot on) was super nice. Their mobility was pretty shocking too. You see it on paper and its one thing, but actually moving the unit on the tabletop is another.

Their only targets were T5 Librarians so it was a bad matchup (but they were the only infantry in the game  ::) ) but the potential was certainly there and they acquitted themselves well.

While I'm gonna be diving more into CWE going forward they are gonna be my go-to for Ynnari troops in a battalion no questions asked... especially if Ynnari are gonna pay index prices for everything like what has been hinted by the guys from Frontline

Very interesting! I can definitely see the Reavers being pretty low in your opponents target priority and I am glad that they did well for you. You'll have to let me know how they fare against a more traditional army. Unfortunately I am still finding it hard to justify the points for a unit that's so squishy.

G'day all!
Games Workshop made a lot of changes from indexes to codexes so far. Why are we assuming FW won't do the same. They would lose a lot of customers if they did not follow GW's structure.

They might, but their team is super tiny. The Focus of Forge World is Horus Heresy, so they can't devote as many resources to 40k. Although, they are working on a new Forge World book with Tau Vs Ad-mech, which should be really cool.

FW is definitely having issues. They've delayed another big Heresy Book (just got that in my email this morning). I'm thoroughly disappointed as long time FW customer. GW said that FW is gonna be covered in Chapter Approved, so I hope they tidy things up there.


I have no issue with the delay in the Age of Darkness book. It's basically a clean up of the 7th edition rulebook, and if they spot any errors, best delay the product then release an errata right away. This is exactly the sort of thing people complain about GW for, errors in the books.

I'm happy they decided to release a better product, then rushing something out. Especially that they made a nice article about it too.

Really, how Forge World has been handling Horus Heresy is amazing. The big red books are phenomenal. The background, art and campaign rules are all extremely well done.

But, they have a small team, so you can tell that is where their focus lies.

I can imagine that they wont release codex's like 40k does, but will probably update their rules in future Imperial Armour books (or re-releases with updated rules). I know the next announced IA book is Tau vs Admech and imperials, so we'll see the first FW updates with that book.

But, I'd rather they get the next HH book done first! I wanna see what they do with Signus Prime!

Completely agreed on the Horus Heresy stuff, for a small team Forge World does do a superb job on the 30k stuff. They managed to get a ruleset that people were crying was completely broken and bloated and made it pretty well balanced (personally I think more balanced than 8th edition....)
I think the problem is that people know that Forge World's focus is mostly on Horus Heresy at the moment and that's why there is a lot of concern over the indexes which if we are being honest are absolute amphetamine parrot.
I will be very interested to see what they do with the Tau vs Ad-Mech book but if I am being honest I'm not holding my breath on us getting any Eldar love in the near future.
To be honest at this point I would prefer that Forgeworld continues to produce the models and covers the 30k rules side but hands over the rules entirely to GW for use in 40k, as much as GW isn't known for it's game balance there is a good reason why a lot of tournaments aren't allowing use of Forgeworld units at the moment.
« Last Edit: November 4, 2017, 05:39:44 AM by Aurics Pride »
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