The Dark Eldar codex has been officially out for a full month now and much of the codex has been broken down in many ways, but what hasn’t been discussed is the potential for use in a “Combat Patrol” mission. Last year at Adepticon, IG dominated combat patrol primarily using Hydra Flak Tanks. As the rules and restrictions are changing this year, people are re-working their strategies and lists.
How many armies feel trying to build a combat patrol list.
If you don’t know what combat patrol is, it is a particular type of 40k game that uses the standard 40k rules and game mechanics, but plays at only 400 points on a 4′x4′ table. It is a scenario made popular at Adepticon. There are restrictions on what your force can comprise of, but most of the 40k game play rules are unchanged. The complete rules are found at the Adepticon website or here.
The biggest thing to keep in mind for all armies is the restrictions on the types of units that may be fielded (Armor 11 max for non-troops/non-dedicated transports…armor 12 max for troops and/or dedicated transports.). This is where Dark Eldar finds itself very free, suffering among the least restrictions of any codex. It is just a matter of someone balancing the right combination of firepower and troops.
Several of the traditionally powerful armies find themselves quite handicapped, especially in Heavy Support. Most heavy support options in the game are not eligible for combat patrol, but Dark Eldar gets to keep their three major options (Ravager, Razorwing fighter, VoidRaven Bomber.) The venom transports will also be key for them, with extra upgraded splinter cannon, this vehicle can pump out a dozen poisoned shots at BS 4, even when moving cruising speed, so they can shoot and evade enemy assaults. Very few other vehicles can match the anti-infantry firepower that the Venoms can dish out.
Another aspect that helps Dark Eldar is that the board is only 4′x4′. With their heavy weapons having a range of 36″ and all of their vehicles able to shoot at 12″, they l can hit anything on the board, are able to move to avoid close combats, and then move flat out to seize objectives.
Dark Eldar + Combat Patrol = Money
Some aspects of combat patrol that work against Dark Eldar is that most of the units and vehicles in the codex are very specialized. When you only have 400 points to take to a tournament setting, it is very difficult to bring something that can take on all comers. Dark Eldar players have to build their lists leaning more towards a singular aspect and hope they don’t catch a bad matchup.
Here is a list I’ve worked out.
 4x Kabalite Warriors + Sybarite, Blaster, blast pistol – Venom transport w/ upgraded splinter cannon, envenomed blades.
 5x Kabalite Warriors, Blaster – Venom transport w/ upgraded splinter cannon, envenomed blades.
 Ravager – 3x Dark Lances, flicker field
Total Cost – 400 points
It uses the aspects that I mentioned above. The ravager’s main job is anti-tank, with addition anti-tank support provided by the blasters in the warrior squads. Most of the game will involve shooting at long distance and then moving rapidly late in the game to contest and/or seize the objectives.
While Dark Eldar isn’t perfect at combat patrol, they are among the better equipped for the mission. Their ability to play within the force restrictions of the combat patrol missions leaves them well off compared to other armies. They should be a force to be reckoned with come Adepticon.