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Why are VCs Mid Tier?

Vipoid

Necromancer
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
Messages
875
#1
Whenever tiers are brought up, vampires are usually regarded as being around mid-tier.

Basically, I'm just curious about exactly what makes us mid-tier? Or, more precisely, on why we're not top tier?

I'm not arguing that we should be placed in the top tier - I'm just curious as to what exactly separates us from the top-tier armies.
 

Borgnine

Moderator
Staff member
True Blood
Joined
Jun 15, 2013
Messages
2,039
#2
Well, maybe it's the fact that the army need some skill and tactics to use. Our units are not so strong 1vs1 [well, besides vampires :rolleyes: ] as are WoC or HE, our army relies on using chaff, resurrecting units, disruption, attrition and all those things - and not to forget the "general-is-dead-so-let's-crumble" detail. Of course, there are armies more difficult to use, and vampires still manage very well on the battlefield but I think it still needs some work and thought to make it work.
Tiers after all are about this, aren't they - that some armies are more difficult to learn? Skilled wood elf player will own a bad WoC player, but generally the WoC will have it easier.

Besides, aren't VC low-top at least? There are many VC players amongst the winning tournament players, as far as i know ;]
 

Lynks

Lord of RAW
Staff member
True Blood
Joined
Dec 29, 2010
Messages
2,262
#3
I would say it falls into the mid tier because the tiers are more representative of how dominant certain builds are these days rather than a general indicator of a books performance. We have no real build that can cleansweep a board like a gutstar list or the WoC chariot core lists and most of our army is quite fragile and as a whole it requires a lot of positioning care. Most of the 'top tier' armies tend to have units that can more or less stand by themselves without support and that's not the case with VC. We certainly have a large range of very competitive choices however and that is why we are in the mid tier.
 

Johnny-Crass

Vampire Ancient
True Blood
Joined
Jan 25, 2012
Messages
6,640
#4
Personally I feel with 8th books tiers are mostly dead. Now there are exceptions in daemons warriors and kind of tk but mostly tiers are dead. But i feel they are midtier due to no ott unit and the lack of waves beig made with them in the tournament circuit
 

Seneschal

Liche
True Blood
Joined
May 15, 2008
Messages
5,524
#5
Lynks said:
I would say it falls into the mid tier because the tiers are more representative of how dominant certain builds are these days rather than a general indicator of a books performance. We have no real build that can cleansweep a board like a gutstar list or the WoC chariot core lists and most of our army is quite fragile and as a whole it requires a lot of positioning care. Most of the 'top tier' armies tend to have units that can more or less stand by themselves without support and that's not the case with VC. We certainly have a large range of very competitive choices however and that is why we are in the mid tier.
Agreed. Look at the potency of the Ogres and the newer books (except for LZ) and you'll see why VC have a harder time dealing with the armies that generally win the most.

I know VC still do well in the ETC format however, and the new draft has removed a number of the old restrictions so we will probably see them winning even more in the coming season.
 

John Rainbow

Crypt Horror
Joined
Mar 7, 2013
Messages
598
#6
I don't really think the ETC data can be used as a comparison as the whole idea of the ETC is to remove the so called 'tiers'. I think VC are pretty decent in general but probably fall down in that they are more difficult to build an all-comers list with for a general tournament. If you think of the 'top tier' armies you regularly hear of WoC or OK being discussed, I think this is purely because they have the best builds for all-comers.
 

Adam_Barrow

Sleepless Knight
True Blood
Joined
Dec 25, 2010
Messages
3,071
#8
I think an argument can be made for Skaven there, bbb. Once that Seer goes you're bound to start seeing a lot of tails and elbows.
 

Seneschal

Liche
True Blood
Joined
May 15, 2008
Messages
5,524
#9
@John Rainbow
The idea of ETC is to remove tiers but the format has yet to succeed in that endeavor. If it did, you would see Beastmen and TK's winning events, not just the usual suspects.
I was a fan of it for awhile but the blanket rules need some work. I wish the organizers all the best.
 

ProperGoffic

Bringing Sixy Back
True Blood
Joined
Feb 26, 2008
Messages
1,158
#10
I'm going to hazard an extremely out-of-left-field guess and say it's down to a few things:

  1. Apart from the Blender Lord, there doesn't seem to be a predictable, reliable, oh-crap-it's-one-of-those choice for Vampire Counts
  2. Vampire Counts like people to fail psychology tests now and then.
  3. Vampire Counts are a magic dependent army with an unspectacular, quite luck-dependent casting capacity.
  4. Steadfast > Unstable in a big way when it comes to keeping units locked in combat. The living are better at attrition, especially since raising stuff back is dependent on so many variables (see above).
  5. The need for a Lore of the Vampires caster often edges out the big Death/Shadows casters that seem to appear in the power builds.

I'm somewhat out of touch, but these are the things which have made me hiss and spit and walk away from current Warhammer; from where I'm sitting, the Vampires are a little too dependent on things they don't really have the capacity to ensure.
 

Abhorash.

Grave Guard
Joined
Apr 28, 2009
Messages
282
#11
I would say Vampire Counts have a more variable representation towards "tiers". What I mean is that we are an army shaped around a weak, yet resilient core with a select few elite units; all the while needed to be played correctly, intelligently and backed up by proper magic. We are not a point click army; and when Vampire Counts are played exactly how they must, they become increasingly more powerful. That is why many experienced players (ETC) tend to dominate more often. Our advantage relies in our ability to pull off less predictable and random events: To name a few: Raising units, Ethereal tar-pitting, Vanhels, dominant lord charges, T-Gheist trapezes. Whereas a heavy army like WoC is much more predictable and can do what they do best with ease - Run forth and crush. To sum up: the more experienced a Vampire Counts' General is the higher in the "tier" he will raise. At least that's how I've come to see it.
 

Korpacz

Skeleton
Joined
Oct 4, 2012
Messages
52
#13
I think perceived tiers largely reflect how easy an army is to use, and not necessarily whether or not a book is strong. You'll notice the "top tier" armies have two things (1) lots of units that can stand alone without support such as WoC core chariots, ironguts, beasts of nurgle, etc. and (2) units that can carry an army through sheer stats/abilities like the nurgle demon prince, greater demon and tooled-up slaan. Having not one, but both of these elements in an army make it much easier to play and significantly more forgiving if mistakes are made, therefore average to sub-par players can win games consistently with these armies. If an army wins consistently, it gets labeled "top tier". VC just don't have a unit that can sweep through an army on their own, and while an argument can be made that a level 4 blender lord is an uber character that can rub elbows with demon princes and Slaan, their effectiveness is somewhat offset by the fact that they only have 3 wounds and a 4++ save and more importantly, if they die, it's most likely game over.

Truth be told VC counters the current WoC power builds better than anyone else - they have the ranks and invocations to hold up monsters, ethereal units to hold up monsters and chariots and screams to kill a low model-count army that is mostly LD8 regardless of armor. On average 1 terror gheist scream will kill a 550pt Nurgle Demon Prince.
 

Strahd

Black Knight
Joined
Aug 29, 2008
Messages
316
#14
I think the biggest reason they are mid tier right now is they have a very slim chance of winning any kind of tournament due to the high amount of daemon players. IMO VC are pretty much an auto loss to daemons. Im not talking about the casual player that plays the daemon army, im talking a tournament player. They counter all of our strengths easily. I use to be a die hard VC player but now I only play them for fun :(
 

badfox7

Black Knight
Joined
Jan 16, 2013
Messages
328
#15
Its because all of out core can't fight much of anything, our initiative sucks, and then weapon skill of even our elite units isn't so great. With all of the always strikes first, rerolls, and additional attacks that are now in this game we have a hard time of doing anything in combat before our opponent wopes half our unit of the board with just there core. The really only thing we do have is some good monsters and bigger models and even in that case there are so many armies that have a lot of shooting and cannons.
 

Vipoid

Necromancer
Joined
Apr 27, 2012
Messages
875
#16
Strahd said:
I think the biggest reason they are mid tier right now is they have a very slim chance of winning any kind of tournament due to the high amount of daemon players. IMO VC are pretty much an auto loss to daemons. Im not talking about the casual player that plays the daemon army, im talking a tournament player. They counter all of our strengths easily. I use to be a die hard VC player but now I only play them for fun :(
Could you perhaps elaborate on this?

I know that they auto-counter all our ethereal units, but what else of ours do they easily counter?

badfox7 said:
Its because all of out core can't fight much of anything, our initiative sucks, and then weapon skill of even our elite units isn't so great. With all of the always strikes first, rerolls, and additional attacks that are now in this game we have a hard time of doing anything in combat before our opponent wopes half our unit of the board with just there core. The really only thing we do have is some good monsters and bigger models and even in that case there are so many armies that have a lot of shooting and cannons.
I certainly know what you mean.

Do you think there's any kind of fix that could be implemented in the next edition/army book?
 

Strahd

Black Knight
Joined
Aug 29, 2008
Messages
316
#17
Well for starters they have flaming cannons, which for a army that has regen for all our big hitters, Gheist, vargulf, mortis engine etc, its pretty much auto kill. On top of that they have a better unstable mechanic that can utilize steadfast. They are immune to psychology and they have access to killing blow which is not so good for our general. They have greater daemons that will smoke a Vamp lord as well and as you mentioned they have magical attacks so our ace in the hole ethereal units don't have a chance. Im sure there are other reasons but off the top of my head that's most of them.
 
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