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Warhammer 40K: This Week’s Meta Hotness – Shadow Spectres

5 Minute Read
Aug 4 2021
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This is one of Warhammer 40,000’s top units, and they are good at hiding it- Shadow Spectres.

In the ever-shifting meta of 40K, armies rise and fall. We’ve spent a lot of time talking about armies that are hot or not, but a lot less time looking at units that are running the show. Today let’s take a look at one of the hottest units currently running around the tabletop.

The Unit

Shadow Spectres are a greatr Aeldari Aspect Warrior group found in the Forge World books. These elite warriors are a heavy-ranged infantry unit that fights with adaptable weaponry. Thanks to their training and tech, they can move fast and hit hard from some surprising areas.

Why They Are Good

Like many other Eldar units, Shadow Spectres are a bit of a glass cannon unit. That being said they do have a pretty great cannon. The Prism Rifle is a pretty solid bit of weaponry with two fire modes. Its dispersed mode gives the unit a ton of shots. If you need to chomp through infantry hordes, getting 6 shots a model, at S5 and AP -1 is really solid. With Orks recent upgrades I’d say this is even better now than it was in the recent past. The second mode focused is particularly good by being D3. D3 weapons are fairly rare in the game (compared with D2) and are at a premium right now. These weapons are great for dealing with units like Gravis Marines, Terminators, Death Guard and light vehicles such as Venoms. At S6 and AP -3, they are well placed to put the hurt onto any of these targets, all of which are currently popular. 

Weapons aside Shadow Spectres, are a fast unit. They can deep strike, fly, move 12 inches, and have Assault weapons.  That makes them useful for running around grabbing objectives and generally being annoying. With deep strike you can keep them out of harm’s way for a bit. With a 3+ save and a -1 to be hit they are one of the tougher Craftworld infantry – but they aren’t cheap.   Overall this is a very flexible unit that can hurt a variety of targets and keep moving at the same time. In particular, the current meta has made them good.

A Sample List

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Saying a unit is hot is all well and good, but let’s take a look at how players are using it.  One list that highlights Shadow Specters is the list that Sean Nayden ran to take 2bd place at the recent Lone Star Open .  (via 40kstats.com)

++ Spearhead Detachment -3CP (Aeldari – Craftworlds) [77 PL, 1,452pts, -3CP] ++

+ Configuration +

Craftworld Attribute
. *Custom Craftworld*: Expert Crafters, Masterful Shots

Detachment Command Cost [-3CP]

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+ HQ +

Autarch Skyrunner [6 PL, 110pts]: Laser Lance

Farseer Skyrunner [7 PL, 140pts]: 0. Smite, 1. Guide, 2. Doom, Shuriken Pistol, Singing Spear

+ Elites +

Shadow Spectres [10 PL, 234pts]
. 8x Shadow Spectre: 8x Plasma Grenades, 8x Prism Rifle
. Shadow Spectre Exarch

Shadow Spectres [5 PL, 130pts]
. 5x Shadow Spectre: 5x Plasma Grenades, 5x Prism Rifle

+ Fast Attack +

Shining Spears [10 PL, 145pts]
. 3x Shining Spear: 3x Laser Lance, 3x Twin Shuriken Catapult
. Shining Spear Exarch: Star Lance
. . Exarch Power: Expert Hunter

Swooping Hawks [4 PL, 80pts]
. 5x Swooping Hawk: 5x Lasblaster

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+ Heavy Support +

Dark Reapers [5 PL, 106pts]
. 2x Dark Reaper: 2x Reaper Launcher
. Dark Reaper Exarch: Tempest Launcher
. . Exarch Power: Long-ranged Fire

Dark Reapers [5 PL, 106pts]
. 2x Dark Reaper: 2x Reaper Launcher
. Dark Reaper Exarch: Tempest Launcher
. . Exarch Power: Long-ranged Fire

Dark Reapers [5 PL, 106pts]
. 2x Dark Reaper: 2x Reaper Launcher
. Dark Reaper Exarch: Tempest Launcher
. . Exarch Power: Long-ranged Fire

Night Spinner [8 PL, 145pts]: Spirit Stones, Twin Shuriken Catapult

Support Weapons [12 PL, 150pts]
. Support Weapon: Shadow Weaver
. Support Weapon: Shadow Weaver
. Support Weapon: Shadow Weaver

++ Patrol Detachment 0CP (Aeldari – Harlequins) [26 PL, 548pts, 10CP] ++

+ Configuration +

Battle Size [12CP]: 3. Strike Force (101-200 Total PL / 1001-2000 Points)

Detachment Command Cost

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Masque Form: The Soaring Spite: Serpent’s Blood

+ Stratagems +

Enigmas of the Black Library (1 Relic) [-1CP]

+ HQ +

Troupe Master [4 PL, 70pts, -1CP]: Choreographer of War, Darkness’ Bite, Fusion Pistol, Harlequin’s Blade, Soaring Spite: Skystrider, Stratagem: Pivotal Role, The Twilight Fang, Warlord

+ Troops +

Troupe [5 PL, 121pts]
. Player: Fusion Pistol, Harlequin’s Embrace
. Player: Fusion Pistol, Harlequin’s Embrace
. Player: Fusion Pistol, Harlequin’s Embrace
. Player: Fusion Pistol, Harlequin’s Embrace
. Player: Fusion Pistol, Harlequin’s Caress

Troupe [6 PL, 147pts]
. Player: Fusion Pistol, Harlequin’s Embrace
. Player: Fusion Pistol, Harlequin’s Embrace
. Player: Fusion Pistol, Harlequin’s Embrace
. Player: Fusion Pistol, Harlequin’s Caress
. Player: Fusion Pistol, Harlequin’s Caress
. Player: Fusion Pistol, Harlequin’s Caress

+ Elites +

Death Jester [3 PL, 50pts]: Domino Shroud, Humbling Cruelty

+ Dedicated Transport +

Starweaver [4 PL, 80pts]

Starweaver [4 PL, 80pts]

++ Total: [103 PL, 7CP, 2,000pts] ++

Using the Unit

This army makes use of two units of Shadow Spectres, one smaller unit, and one larger unit. They fit in very well in what is clearly an MSU army. As fast troops with some heavy weapons, they slot in between Dark Reapers and the faster Swooping Hawks and Shining Spears. The larger 9 man unit is actually the largest and most expensive unit in the army. With plenty of other units to draw enemy fire, and no doubt helped by the fact that many people won’t know what they do, the Specters are able to drop in and unleash a lot of firepower. Guided and firing at a Doomed unit they can really hurt someone. These fast deadly units work very well in an army full of other fast, flexible and deadly units.

 

Let us know what units you think are hot right now, down in the comments! 

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