Reavers are Dark Eldar that ride fast, ultra-lightweight jetbikes and are usually seen sowing destruction and havoc ahead of the main Dark Eldar force.
Reavers are a Fast Attack choice for the Dark Eldar.
The first thing that struck me on getting my hands on the Dark Eldar Reavers boxed set was how light it was.
The Dark Eldar Reavers boxed set, which contains 1 1/2 A5 sized sprues, costs £1 more than the New Dark Eldar Raider which contains 2 A4 sized sprues.
This seems very expensive in comparison…
The Dark Eldar Reaver sprues:
On closer inspection
The sprues contain enough parts to build 3 Dark Eldar Reavers, one of which can be built as an Arena Champion.
The kit includes all the weapons options and upgrades from the codex for the jetbikes themselves but there are no weapon arms for the riders, this is annoying as the Arena Champion has options for close combat weapons. Granted these can be cannibalised from other kits but this could mean running short elsewhere.
The Reavers were quick and easy to build, all three taking no more than an hour to put together including cleaning off mould lines etc. The jetbikes themselves are very simple models and the riders come together very easily thanks in part to little notches on the shoulder joins.
As you can see from the pics on this page, once built, the Reavers look pretty good, not mind blowing like the Raider we reviewed a few days ago but they are certainly appropriately spikey, look devilishly fast and I must say I like the whole-face visors.
Finally, going back to my initial bug bear, price. The Reavers are the most expensive boxed set of the first wave of Dark Eldar releases and I have to ask myself “Why?” They definitely contain less plastic than any of the other sets we’ve reviewed, even the Kabalite Warriors box contained two full size A5 sprues, compared to the Reaver’s one and a half. Maybe there is some aspect to their manufacture that creates this higher price but I suspect the real reason is that most of the separate Warhammer 40k bike kits sell for £7, so this has simply been multiplied by three to account for the three jetbikes the box contains. Now, of course, I don’t know this for sure but I would imagine that a box of three models would be cheaper to produce than three boxes each containing one model. Whatever the logic behind the pricing of this boxed set it does seem very expensive to me.
On the tabletop
The Dark Eldar are one of the most mobile armies in Warhammer 40,000 and the Reavers are the fastest unit from the Dark Eldar Codex.
These guys benefit from all the usual rules for jetbikes, making them hardier than most troops as well as more mobile.
They can inflict significant damage on enemy units as they fly by, I can see them being used as Tank Hunters as the Heat Lance they can be equipped with has some pretty scary abilities, combining lance and melta… The guy bringing up the rear in the image below is toting a Heat Lance.
I will definitely be taking at least one unit of 5-6 Reavers in my Dark Eldar Army.
The Reaver kit contains enough parts to build 3 Dark Eldar Reavers, one of which can be built as an Arena Champion and includes all the jetbike weapon options and upgrades from the codex but annoyingly there are no weapon arms for the Reavers themselves, even though the Arena Champion can take a close combat weapon in the codex.
The Reavers look pretty good and are easy to build. That said they are less impressive to look at than the other Dark Eldar kits we have reviewed in the last week or so.
Finally, and this is what lets the kit down, the kit is very expensive. I really feel that rather than £21, this kit should be priced at about the same £15 RRP level that the Kabalite Warriors are set at.
Bearing cost in mind I can only award the Dark Eldar Reavers kit 6/10. That said, on the tabletop these guys are going to be pretty mean so they will sell regardless, I will be fielding at least one unit of 5 or 6 myself…
Overall score: 6/10
*Accurate as of 3rd November 2010