Harlequins Ld-based Psychic Power Damage

These are a few psychic powers that Harlequins have access to, which have a few things in common: they do damage based on Ld and they bypass armour and cover saves. This makes them good for taking on tough Monstrous Creatures that Harlequins would find it difficult to wound otherwise. It also means they can be buffed by combining them with things that reduce Ld – see below for more on those.

They don’t deny Invulnerable saves or Feel No Pain so are less useful against units like Thunderwolves. They do follow a common theme of 7th Ed Psychic powers – that you have a small chance of having a large effect!

As of the recent draft FAQs, none of these powers needs to roll to hit as they don’t use weapon profiles.

Mirror of Minds

Ld Difference Mean Successes Successes 25% of the time Median Successes Successes 75% of the time
0 1.4 2.0 1.0 0.0
1 2.6 4.0 2.0 0.0
2 5.0 7.0 3.0 1.0
3 11.0 15.0 7.0 3.0
4 35.1 49.0 24.0 10.0

Mirror of Minds is a Focussed Witchfire, meaning that it can pick out a character in a unit, if you get 3 successes. Otherwise it’s a WC2 power. It only affects one model. In practice a character in a unit can still ‘Look Out, Sir’ his way out of trouble, so this power is best directed at a lone Monstrous Creature, like a Riptide or Wraithknight.

24" range is pretty good for a psychic attack.

Looking at the statistics this is pretty unreliable when the target has Ld 10 or 9, meaning it’s best used with some way of reducing their Ld – see below. Since you’ll probably want at least 4 dice to try and cast, the risk is getting up there.

Amusingly if you can get the target Ld down to 5 it becomes impossible for them to win the roll off – they take an infinite number of Wounds and so should be removed…

Laugh of Sorrows

Ld Mean W W 25% of time Median W W 75% of time
5 2.6 4.0 2.0 1.0
6 2.1 3.0 2.0 0.0
7 1.9 3.0 1.0 0.0
8 2.1 3.0 2.0 0.0
9 2.6 4.0 2.0 1.0
10 3.2 5.0 3.0 1.0

Laugh of Sorrows is another WC2 power, and if you compare the statistics to Psychic Shriek below you have to wonder why. Interestingly though, it does better against Ld 10 so you don’t need your Ld reducing tricks here. It does also have 24" range which is pretty good for an offensive psychic power.

Psychic Shriek

Ld Mean W W 25% of time Median W W 75% of time
5 5.5 8.0 5.0 3.0
6 4.6 7.0 4.0 2.0
7 3.7 6.0 3.0 1.0
8 2.8 5.0 2.0 0.0
9 2.1 4.0 1.0 0.0
10 1.5 3.0 0.0 0.0

Psychic Shriek is easy to get hold of since it is a Primaris power, and only WC1, which compares favourably with the powers above. Its only downside is the slightly shorter range at 18". It can benefit from Ld reducing tricks and works equally well against Monstrous Creatures or squads.

Ld Trickery

There are several ways to reduce enemy Ld which will make Mirror of Minds and Psychic Shriek more effective, but won’t really help with Laugh of Sorrows.

  • Mask of Secrets. A must-take relic for any Harlequin force. 12" bubble of -2Ld.
  • Terrify (Telepathy psychic power). If you’re going for Psychic Shriek you may be lucky enough to get Terrify as well, which can impose a -1 Ld on a unit, with range 24".
  • Dark Eldar allies – the Armour of Misery. This is another -2Ld item, but sadly only 6" range will make it hard to use.
  • Dark Eldar allies – Haemonculus Covens. The detachment and formations from this book hand out -1Ld for units within 12" of any unit. I don’t know much about whether they’re good otherwise though…
  • Craftworld Eldar allies – Horrify (Runes of Battle psychic power). This Malediction gives a massive -3 to Ld with range 18", but you’ll have to get lucky to roll it. The discipline is available to Warlocks or a Spiritseer, and the latter is an Independent Character so may be easier to make use of. Can also be taken by the Hemlock Wraithfighter mentioned below.
  • Space Marines allies – 1st Company Task Force. This would be expensive and tricky to use, as its -2Ld only kicks in for units within 12" of any 3 units from the formation. However you could take e.g. Sternguard in Drop Pod and combat squad them, which would be 3 units in one place right away.
  • Doesn’t work – a Hemlock Wraithfighter gives -2Ld within 12", but unfortunately it’s stated as applying only to Morale, Pinning and Fear checks, so doesn’t help these psychic powers.

Also of note – the Stubborn and Fearless rules do not help the target units here. Stubborn applies only to Morale and Pinning Checks, while Fearless also applies to Regroup and Fear checks, but neither mention Psychic attacks.

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