Dark Elf Runners

Long Passing Runner:
  • Normal: Pass, Accurate, Sure Hands, Nerves of Steel, Block/Dodge
  • Doubles: Strong Arm
  • Stat Increase: +AG +ST +MV

The more traditional build for a Thrower taking Pass first as you can use it to reroll Dump Off as well as normal passes. Accurate up next as it negates the -1 for the opposing player when being hit and you Dump Off as well as range modifiers. Sure Hands can be handy for two turn scores and when facing Strip Ball to give an option to not Dump Off and take the hit (though you don’t have any defensive skills). Nerves of Steel combos well with two Runners and lets you mark up a player while you do a pass as passing ends your movement. After that I would probably look at taking Block or Dodge. Strong Arm is the only obvious doubles choice and while all the stats are useful an early +ST may benefit a different build and could even be skipped to save TV on a later increase.

Faux Blitzer Runner:
  • Normals: Dodge, Block, Side Step, Nerves of Steel, Catch
  • Doubles: Guard
  • Stat Increase: +ST +AG +MV

This is my preferred build for the Runners, they can tend to hog the SPP as you may often forgo Dump Off as it is always a threat if he is holding the ball and you think you can survive the hit. Unless in tackle heavy environments go with Dodge first, they get tied up and tend to do a lot of Dodges. Early on less players have Block or Tackle so Dodge is also best for protection. Block next and they start to look more like the Blitzers and can be used like one as well. After that I look to take skills based on the rest of the team and the other races you are facing. For traditional options I’d go with Side Step next to stop them getting bogged down and stay near the sidelines where you Witch Elves can threaten crowd pushes. Nerves of Steel will help keep the ball in the hands of a Dark Elf and for intercepting and catching bouncing balls. Catch also helps with all those as well and provides another reroll for when you have to make quick scores.

Doubles I’d take Guard, more so it is easier for team mates to blitz opposing players away from them, as opposed to getting stuck in a ruck. +ST is great and +AG and +MV are also rather useful.

Dark Elf Runner Summary:

Dark Elf Runners have given the Dark Elves more separation in play styles from the other Elven teams which is a welcome changed to their roster. They can be fantastic players if you learn to utilise them correctly and as such their teams have the most flexible running game of any race now. Their one let down is their lower armour but they got more speed as compensation. You can have a successful team with only one runner if you prefer the extra armour of a Lineman along with the slight saving in TV.

One option I didn’t mention though was Leader, Elf teams tend to roll a lot of dice which can really burn through your rerolls. As keeping the ball in the hands of a Dump Off player causes more issues for the defence you may come to the last turn of a drive with the Runner still holding the ball and no rerolls. With no one on the team likely to have Catch you can find the Runners hog the SPP rather than risking dropping the ball by scoring with a team mate. So be wary of this and sometimes using Dump Off to get the ball into the hands of a team mate can be treated as a free pick up attempt. If you do fail it then you may have the option to use another player to pick up and score during your turn.

Also as an extension to the SPP hogging and fast development of Runners if going down a route as an extra Blitzer type, you may find taking skills like Tackle useful, especially if facing lots of Dodge heavy teams and you are light on Tackle. This flexibility shouldn’t be ignored and don’t just think they have to take Passing skills because they have access to them. They still do the ball carrying role well with Dodge and Block but aren’t just limited and one dimensional.


26 Responses to Dark Elf Runners

  1. Dalryk November 23, 2009 at 2:16 am #

    what about taking Wrestle instead of Block on the Faux Blitzer Runner?  On the assumption that you’ll dump off rather than take the hit when carrying the ball, staying on your feet isn’t so important and it takes the opponent’s blitzer out of the play at the same time.    Then on defence you’ve got a(nother) Wrestle option for going after the opponent’s ball carrier.

  2. Coach November 23, 2009 at 2:35 am #

    That is a great idea and I wish I’d thought of it! Obviously for ball carriers Block is the preferred option. The one downside would be that they could be targeted by Juggernaut equipped killer builds but I don’t think you can live life worrying about that. I may even write that up into a specific build.

    Thanks for the idea.

  3. altf4 November 23, 2009 at 2:27 pm #

    If “Nerves of Steel” remains on the top of the needs when dealing with “Dump-Off”, I would advise “Safe Throw” to be chosen just after.
    Getting rid of adversaries’ TZ negative modifiers is a necessity but giving the ball to the opponent is worse than losing it. “Pass” therefore takes precedence upon “Accurate”, as “Dump-Off” deals with “Quick Passes” (with AG4 and NoS, it ends up with a 2+ in almost all situations).

    • Coach November 23, 2009 at 3:21 pm #

      Most of the time when you use Dump Off there isn’t really going to be a chance to intercept (if you position your players well). I’d rather skip safe throw (though in LRB6 the holding onto it if you fumble on non natural 1s is handy) to get a skill that is useful in more situations. Not to mention if you do manage to keep hold of the ball when rolling a 2 cause of safe throw, you are still going to get knocked over and lose the ball anyway, even more so if they have Strip Ball.

  4. Deesaster November 23, 2009 at 3:25 pm #

    Wrestle on runners helps also against blitzers with a lot of MA, that go after the guy you dumped off to after the initial block. If you manage to get jump up into your build as well and both runners will always be able to stay close to each other, duo-runners are nasty to deal with.

  5. DiddleySquat January 18, 2010 at 11:26 am #

    I prefer a mixed approach to building your Runner.
    Pass as a first skill, for 3 reasons: it boosts Dump Off; passing play increases your scoring potential; passing play helps spread the SPP around more evenly.
    Dodge second, for 2 reasons: increased mobility, as your Runner will probably be the player who will try the most to pick up loose balls; protection against non-tackle blocks.
    Skill 3, 4 and 5 I’d opt for Block/Wrestle, Accurate and Sure Hands (in no particular order): Block/Wrestle for the obvious protection. Both skill have their advantages and disadvantages, so pick the one that suits you best – I’d go for Block on this build. Accurate improves both normal passing and Dump Off. Sure Hands for that extra boost when trying to pick up a loose ball in TZ’s (not that much against Strip Ball as with Pass and Accurate already, Dumping Off often gives you a better chance at keeping possession, more so against a Tackle/Wrestle blitz).

  6. VoidSeer January 18, 2010 at 3:22 pm #

    To each his own. I take sure hands first. I do pick up the ball a lot more than getting hit.

  7. Danzeru April 9, 2010 at 12:06 pm #

    The Leader skill is not mentioned at any point during this guide. I understand it is a Passing skill and therefore these are the only DE players with access to it. Which build can this skill be worked into? I thought it wouldn’t be bad on a long passing Runner? As he could stay out of the way of trouble and therefore conserve his RR.

    • Coach April 9, 2010 at 12:49 pm #

      I very briefly mentioned it in the Summary on page 2. I’ve had a successful team without taking Leader at all. It does have uses and I did sometimes wish for an extra reroll.

      If you do take it, it does mean you are forgoing an alternative skill, either to increase passing or to help protect one of the lower armoured players on your team. I don’t really select Leader very often for most teams though, perhaps someone else who has taken it can give their input on the subject.

  8. Snotty June 11, 2010 at 12:51 pm #

    I find leader skill is can be good in two ways. Firstly if you have player who tends to stay back  in defence, he often wont get near the ball (unless something has gone wrong), so  this way he is helping out the front line, with their passes and blocks.
    2nd, is if one of your reserves as leader. When one of your ace players has got injured, you need all the help you can get
    the skill would be best with lineman you can afford to have less contact and not runners, who need thier ball handling skills.

  9. Doover July 13, 2010 at 4:01 pm #

    Going to play a new DE Team soon so I put some thoughts into them.
    After all I was thinking about 2 Runner with NoS and Pro.

    Sure Pro is only a 4+ Reroll but you can use it for Passing, Catching, Picking up the Ball and Dodging away when you don´t have Dodge or a Tackle is next to you later.
    The first view would be to give one Pass and Catch to the other one but with Pro they can switch the role in the next turn if needed together with the other bonuses.

    • Coach July 13, 2010 at 4:12 pm #

      I had great success with only having one Runner who didn’t take any passing skills at all. I would still prefer Pass or Catch to Pro though. I’m not a big believer in using Dump Off or letting my ball carrier get hit either for that matter. Try asking on the forum to see how people who went a perhaps more traditional route got on. Good Luck.

  10. otzenpunk September 8, 2010 at 11:26 pm #

    I’m a little bit confused, why you suggest Strong Arm on a “Dump Off Specialist Runner” for a double. As far as I understand, Strong Arm and Accurate do nearly the same, except Accurate being better, because it works on quick passes, too. Is there any reason, why you’d want to boost your TV with an inferiour skill?

  11. Coach September 9, 2010 at 12:44 am #

    Just a poor choice of name for the build. If you are going that route they are going to be taking specialist throwing skills. So if going that way might as well go the whole hog and take Strong Arm as well so they can also provide a long passing threat as well.

    Strong Arm doesn’t help at all for Dump-Off though so sorry for that confusion.

  12. Galantrin December 18, 2010 at 2:02 pm #

    Hey, coach.
    Great article. One question about +AG and Dump Off though. You say that +Ag don’t help your Dump Off passes, but I don’t see what you mean. A quick pass is usually 2+, but with at least one opponent in your tackle zone you will never get better than a 3+ roll. As I see it, 5 AG will make sure you get a 2+ Dump Off pass as long as you only have one opponent adjacent. (?)

  13. howabe December 19, 2010 at 9:50 pm #

    As the build has Nerves of Steel as the first skill, modifiers won’t affect any passes 😉

  14. Mico Selva April 11, 2011 at 9:55 am #

    Coach, what would You consider a priority for the faux blitzer build on a 5-5 roll, +MV or Guard?

  15. Coach April 11, 2011 at 10:43 am #

    Hi Mico,

    As you’ve not said otherwise I will assume it is the first skill, thought I don’t think it really makes a big difference as far as I am concerned. As nice as having a MV8 player would be, for my money I’m taking Guard. The only time I perhaps wouldn’t is if the team is already fairly well developed and had a fair amount of players of Guard.

    You will need to be careful with them though as they are one of your lower armoured players, I’d look to try and get then Block and Dodge as soon after as possible. Though they could make do with one of those as you shouldn’t neglect to try and get skills on your other players as well.

    At the end of the day though a Dark Elf team can be formidable opponents without a single double or stat increase on the entire team. Extra movement is easier to compensate for by positioning a lot of the time, the advantages of Guard though are hard to replicate.

  16. xama May 17, 2011 at 3:48 am #

    hey guys!
    Congratz for this great web,good job!

    Dark Elves Runners are not very popular, most of the teams prefer maxing on blitzers right from the start or having witches,RR’s, apothecary,etc,,

    I like Runneres a lot, they’r cheap , fast & versatile.
    Runners cost 10K more than a line and get +1Mv,can be throwers since they can get Pass skills, and they also make good catchers.

    A few days ago the Dark Elf Runner “J.Pelosombra”, nº7 of the “Silent Nighthawks” died failing a rerolled Gfi, the medic tried to heal, but death was redundant….He was the leading scorer of the team
    Pelosombra ; Mv8 St3 Ag4 Av7 , Dump off,Dodge,Surefeet,Sprint.(+1Mv)

  17. Ryan August 8, 2012 at 6:59 am #

    Dump Off Specialist Runner: remove strong arm as a double. If you wanted to take strong arm you could take accurate and save 10k. And accurate isn’t even on the list

  18. Joe March 14, 2013 at 2:43 pm #

    I messed up on my runners and gave one stand firm and kick. Now I am having trouble getting them to score to take a second skill.

  19. Voltorocks April 16, 2013 at 4:35 pm #

    One of the most important roles these guys play that you don’t seem to mention is ballhawk. As one of few players in the game with MA 7 and GAP skill access, Dark Elf runners with Nerves of Steel and dodge are surpassed only by pro-elf catchers in their ability to make their way into traffic, recover a heavily marked ball, and either dodge away or lob it out (maybe with pass?). With dump off, you could even just stand there in their cage and wait for them to hit you, if you had to.

    I think this is an oft overlooked aspect of defense; so much energy is spent getting the ball loose, but if often takes a good ‘hawk to turn that into a score, rather than just a stall. Throw in an AG boost and/or leap, and no loose ball is safe, or round out with block and sidestep to make them impossible to knock down.

    • CariadocThorne November 28, 2016 at 7:52 pm #

      This “retriever” role is actually the reason I play High Elves, not Dark Elves.

      The High Elf catcher starts with Pass and Safethrow. Add Dodge and Sure Hands, and he is already very good at retreiving the ball, then running or throwing it clear. Add Nerves of Steel or Accurate and he becomes great. He’s almost good at running the ball clear as the Dark Elf Runner, missing just a point of MA.

      By contrast, while the Runner is very slightly better at running clear, he is a lot worse at throwing clear, needing 2 extra skills just to be as good.

  20. Sven November 8, 2016 at 6:39 pm #

    As far as understand corectly you mean to say that nos will be used to pick up the ball but, it only works on throw catch and intercepts.

    • Ben November 18, 2016 at 11:18 pm #

      I think he means using NOS in order to throw the ball out, not for the pick-up.

  21. Arlo November 9, 2016 at 9:02 am #

    An interesting benefit to taking wrestle is that if an opposing player blitzes the runner and intercepts the dump-off, or catches a bouncing fumble, and is then wrestled down during the hit, the opponent suffers a turnover. I have been eagerly waiting to see if it implements in the computer game, but from my understanding of the rules, it should be the result. Not great to be letting your handler get hit, or to hope for the both down, but it would be gold to see the look on your opponent’s face when you force a turnover during their blitz.

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