Spears vs. Hand Weapons. Which is better?

So I’ve heard that hand weapons are the new wave of the future for 8th edition and that spears are a thing of the past… I’ve heard from several different people and have all given good perspective that supports their side of the table. I’ve even went back to one of my spear units and swapped them out with hand weapons in order to get that precious 6+ parry save… What are everybody’s thoughts on this debate? If you take the spear then you could possibly get more attacks but pass on the parry save. If you take hand weapons then you get the parry save but only your “step up” attacks. Tough one, no?

My thoughts are that you could be ok either way, depending on how you play your army. For me, in a unit of Saurus Warriors, it costs and extra point for spears and when I have a unit of 24… well, that’s an extra 24 points that I have to spend. Those points could be spent on an extra magic item or to add to a unit size to get it bigger… In my newest list I have both spears and hand weapons so I’m hoping to get good results. I’ve posted some pics of my recent project where I swapped out the spears on my Saurus Warriors for hand weapons. Enjoy!

In the meantime… Spears? Or hand weapons? Your thoughts???


5 thoughts on “Spears vs. Hand Weapons. Which is better?

  1. To me, it’s pretty much a no-brainer. +1 armor and 6+ ward save is WAY more important that a few extra S3/4 attacks. In most armies you have to pay to lose the 6+ ward save (VC skelies for instance have to pay 1pt for spears, but come w/HW+S).

    For those that played previous eds, we had to pay 15pts in the past for a 6+ ward, now you pretty much get one for no more that 1pt… FOR YOUR WHOLE UNIT.

  2. I think it depends on each unit and what you want them to do.
    For Lizards, their tough armor and shields make them already 4+ armor save. Which is nuts on core (and two attacks?) If you’re playing defensive, the spears and extra attacks from GOOD core make a difference. 6+ parry is hard to get, and not that reliable, but does help.

    Conversly, when I run my ungors; I run HW&Sh. Why? You pay 1 more point for cheap spears, it denies me the ‘parry save’ and makes me less likely to charge. As an OFFENSIVE army, the beasts need to charge. The 6+ armor save is laughable on ungors, but they’re my tar pit and meant to die and hold up people….not to actually do any sort of damage.
    Saurses, on the other hand, CAN and WILL do damage. They often play a defensive game, so making the enemy run into their ranks of spears. That 4+ armor is decent enough, 6+ parry is not as reliable as you think, but on cheap chaff units /tar pits it can keep them alive just a bit longer.

    I think on tough and hard hitting lizards, I’d run the spears, unless you think you’re running an offensive game.

    It really just depends on the unit.

    plus, with lore of life, that 6+ becomes obsolete when you get 4+ regen…..

    • Zebrazach, hey thanks for commenting man, I’m glad you’re checking out the blog. I try to keep up with yours as much as I can. This topic is an old one but one worth bringing up. With my new army, I have a unit of both HW&S and Spears… They are both 30 strong and can do a number. Admittedly, I enjoy the spear unit mainly because it’s my best painted unit so it would be a travesty (to me!) not to bring them to the tabletop. In gaming terms, they are still effective but you don’t know how many times that 6+ parry save has saved me… For now, I’ll stick to one each go from there. Thanks again.

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