The infamous portal block is a bane for quite a few Dark Eldar players. I am going to say apparently, because I haven't yet had someone successfully stop mine yet. There are some very good ways to block a portal, and I figured doing a post might just get some of these methods people are using out on the table. I will do a quick one on how I tend to deploy my portals, and then by all means if you have had someone block your portal, speak up and tell us how.

What I don't want to hear is theorised counters, or "I would do this to your tactic". I want to hear from Dark Eldar players how their portals have actually been blocked in a game. This means that they must block it in the first two rounds of the game. Later blocks mean nothing really.

First things first. If you really fear a portal block, there are many pre-emptive things you can do to prevent it. 90% of all players will simply not attempt it, if you remind them of what will happen when they fail. Having something inside your webways that can actually rip apart everything that comes near it is one. 3 Talos is generally enough for people to want to stay over 12" away from a webway. It is important to know what the enemy is capable of before deciding how you are going to place your webways.

Round 1 multiple portal deployments. Deploy multiple portals within 12" of each other. This common sense approach is called supporting each other. You block one, and my scourges or reavers can still use it, while my Talos or multiples there of, come out from the other one, and get to kill a ton of your models. I am a 3 portal user in my lists, and my third is often set on a flank in round 2 in vital vulnerable location elsewhere. The third portal is flexible, place it when and where you need it.

Vect is also with the unit that I have been using to deploy two portals. Sideways raider, wide deployment of the grotesques with a haemonculi on each end as far out as the deployment from the raider reaches. This means that Vect can eat anything that comes in too close and you have two portals in support of each other.

Blocking units. Hey, we have fast raiders. Use them to fly out into the path of potentially blocking units. Make it so they cannot get around to your portals.

In case of an complete deepstriking list, deploy your portals closer to your board edge, or within assault range encase the portal does get blocked.

Also,  use your beasts as deployed behind where your portals are going to be. They will be in immediate assault range of anyone attempting to block them in. Also remember that if your portals are 24" away from your board edge, its not a bad thing to have to use beasts from your board edge if the enemy really is trying to block your portals.

Above all else, when playing a webway list, I prefer to go first. Webway placement is the most important thing early game as it controls deployment of my reserves. Vect is my biggest tool when playing the webway game. Go first, chances are you will control the flow of the portals, Go second deploy making sure that any blocking threats are dealt with, and then attempt to seize.

This is a learning curve for all of us, so please comment on past experiences with webways.


  1. When my brother in law first started practicing with Dark Eldar, he had a bad habit of trying to deploy his portal as close to my lines as possible. Since it was usually just a single HQ model, I would simply run my infantry squads forward, blast the HQ off the table, and envelope the portal on turn one.

    As far as I could tell, this was only a "noob" mistake on his part, and I helped him develop a plan to both deploy the portal AND protect it by simply not placing it so far forward, and by having two transports out front to block it, as you mentioned in your post.

    I think a dark eldar player can easily make it difficult/impossible to get an early game portal block using minimal units for protection vs an all comers list.

  2. I have never had my portals completely blocked off, but I have had some daring commanders severely limit my deployment out of them. One game against a razor spam list left me with only the back edge of each portal to use. Not bad but not great. And one guy I play quite a bit is getting pretty good at making sure he has some assualt cannons aiming at where my portals are with a layer of bubble wrap in front.

  3. OR...

    Only have Jetbikes and Jump Infantry come out of them?

    I have Heat Lance Reavers (who crack open a transport), Baron & Hellions (who charge disembarked infantry from said transport), and Scourges with Haywire Blasters (who suppress other tanks) come out of my portals.

    It's virtually impossible for the enemy to have a 10" radius of models surrounding the portal even if they do have Guard blobs. They're usually to slow to get to the portals even with "Run! Run! Run!" orders before my units emerge.

  4. I agree that part of your webway deployements should be reavers/scourges. Something should be said though for making what is coming out to be beyond scary as hell.

    If the opponent sees that what is coming out of the webways is going to wipe him out if he fails, he wont do it. This is the one reason to keep your webways within assault range of each other.

  5. im not a dark eldar player myself. but my main opponent is a dark eldar player and i have managed 1 to trap him. Im a necron player. he deployed his first one, but due to dawn of war deployment didn't get his second one.

    he had first turn. i ran ahead with everything first turn, but one of my warrior squads went and ran instead of shot. my shooting amounted to destroying what he had on the board. the first turn nothing came out, so i moved everything to strategic positions and cover, and my warrior squads ran foward, but didn't make it. about half his army came from off the board that turn but nothing came through the webway as i was just out of range of assault. my next turn i managed to surrond it before anything could come out and shot down the other carrier.
    one of my few wins against him. his mistake was to deploy one without support or even the chance of support.

  6. Im not sure what he did, but as a rule you should deploy your webways round 1. So in dawn of war he should of came in off the board in a raider, jumped off and deployed a second webway in support of the first one he started on the board.

    Only when I am using 3 webways do I sometimes place a third out of portal support range.

  7. How do you manage Lash of Submission ?

    During a tournament, my opponent lashed my own squad @24' range, around my portal.

    Since coming from reserves is made BEFORE moving anything else, a judge rules that I couldn't move my own unit through an already present around the portal.



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