Top 5 Harlequin Tactics Warhammer 40k 9th Edition

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These are your Top 5 Harlequin Tactics Warhammer 40k 9th Edition. This isn’t just any tactics randomly pulled form the new codex. No, this top five is from the current number one ranked Harlequin player in the world: Colin Mcdade!

But first, a brief intro…

The Harlequins are an Eldar (Aeldari) faction of the Warhammer Universe. They recount glorious tales of the hedonism, debauchery, and charismatic talent of the deft and deadly Aeldar, whose pleasure changed the course of history. From bringing Craftworlds into being to creating a Chaos God, the Harlequins tell all the tales–and they have access to the infamous Black Library to make their stories, dancing, and theatrical displays all the more lethal. Picture these gloriously mad space elf clowns leaving dagger slashes of destruction as they move with a convivial ease through the Webways. 

Harlequins are marked by their distinct harlequin diamond patterns, bright colors, and expressive, creepy, theatrical masks that convey their goal: they will make their enemies’ fate, bringing them to an end on the battlefield. 

How Are Harlequins Organized in 9th Edition?

In a quite fitting organizational structure, Harlequins segment themselves into Troupes led by a Troupe Master or Shadowseer. 

Troupe Masters

Troupe Masters are gifted at inspiring their Troupe members to use particularly deadly strikes and flamboyantly tragic feats on the battlefield. To emphasize this, a Troupe Master’s core ability is called “Choreographer of War.” The Troupe Master gets a possible selection of one of eight weapons, including Neuro disruptor, Fusion pistol, Aeldari power sword, Harlequin’s blade, Harlequin’s caress, Harlequin’s kiss, and Harlequin’s embrace. 

Shadowseers

A Shadowseer enables their Troupe members to evade strikes deftly, dancing and laughing maniacally about the battlefield as they commit acts of war. They may become equipped with a Hallucinogen grenade launcher, a Neuro disruptor, or a Miststave. 

Harlequin Elite Choices in 9th Edition

WH40K 2017 Dancers
WH40K 2017 Dancers by Ryuyujin

Warhammer 9th Edition Harlequin Elite Choices include the Death Jester and Solitaire. They have vehicle choices such as Voidweavers and Skyweavers (jet bikes). Voidweavers have an impressive improvement – their gun options are substantially better and they have a prismatic cannon option. There’s also a transport called a Starweaver, which allows your Harlequins to ride in style. They can ride quickly, shoot fusion guns out of the open top of the Starweaver, and make space elf drive-bys look stylish and bloody at the same time. 

Options to Upgrade and Customize Your Harlequin Faction (Harlequin Tactics Pivotal Roles)

Troupe Masters, Death Jesters, Solitaires, and Shadowseekers each have three special abilities. 

Harlequin Troupe Masters

As discussed previously, Harlequin Troupe Masters are the ultimate inspiration for bloodlust and theatrics. 

Their abilities include Prince of Light, an aura that can add to a charge roll; Queen of Stars, which can negate invulnerable saves; and Veiled King, which increases the chance of a successful melee attack with a wound roll modification.

Death Jesters

Eldar Harlequin
Eldar Harlequin by Sokil-Su

Death Jesters dance the line between madness and humor, and if one were to see them, it would be evident why they are capable of walking along the Webways. They kind of fit right into the concept of everything and nothing all at once. 

Death Jesters’ abilities include Harvester of Torment, which potentially improves ranged attack hits; Lord of Crystal Bones, which represents a fear effect for your opposing army; and Rift Ghoul, which can remove cover for your enemies and create additional wound damage.

Solitaires

It can be lonely, even on the battlefield. Solitaires embrace this, spreading despair in their velocitous movements as they slay.

Solitaires get unique abilities such as Prince of Sins, which negatively affects attack roles against the model with it; Spectre of Despair, which has a fascinating haunting mechanic; and Thirsting Darkness, which can change Advances to Moves, and provides extra movement in piles or consolidation. 

Shadowseekers

The gloom of desperate dreams and the stickiness of the web–these are the domains of the Shadowseekers, who feel best when embodying covert fatality. 

Shadowseekers get some effective unique abilities, like Agent of Pandemonium (an Aura), which reduces an enemy’s effectiveness as it advances; Gloom Spider, which dulls an enemy’s Aura abilities; and Mirror Architect (an Aura), which gives a friendly model distance. 

9th Edition Harlequin Tactics Abilities

The Harlequin Datasheets provide some exciting new abilities for this faction. The Harlquins’ Panopoly ability provides a 4+ invulnerable save (as in past editions), an option to trespass models and ignore terrain features, and makes them harder to hit. 

As in past editions of Warhammer, Harlequins also get Rising Crescendo which lets them charge when most units could not. Luck of the Laughing God is an ability that permits rerolls in certain circumstances. 

Paint and Play a Harlequin Army in Warhammer 9th Edition if You Like…

Masters of The Midnight Opera
Masters of The Midnight Opera by littleFernanda
  • Altering the outcomes of your opponent’s shooting abilities
  • Moving lightning fast across the board–in style
  • Wildly colored space elves with a penchant for traveling the Webway
  • Playing bards in other tabletop role playing games (TTRPGs)
  • Ignoring models or terrain
  • Especially challenging armies to paint
  • Mischievous characters and have always wanted your own personal army of Lokis
  • Finesse armies with focused strategies and fewer models on the battlefield

Harlequin Tactics in 9th Edition

Our experts at Nights at the Game Table have put together the following Harlequin Tactics in 9th Edition. 

Particolor Party: Create a coordinated dance of horror and Harlequin diamonds on the battlefield. Utilize all subfactions for optimal play: Light, Twilight, Dark, Saedath.

Top 5 Harlequin Tactics in 9th Edition

Warhammer 40K - Harlequin Troupe Master
Warhammer 40K – Harlequin Troupe Master by KingOvRats

Harlequin Tactic #1: Blinded by the Light: 

Light is the most competitive Harlequin subfaction because it has a transhuman-type ability for hit rolls against ranged weapons 12 inches or more away. While it helps to have all subfactions represented, you might want to lean towards the Light side a bit here.

Harlequin Tactic #2: Reinforcements Have Arrived…in Style

Add Harlequin units as a separate detachment in a Craftworld army without losing the awesome Craftworld army bonuses, such as strands of fate.

Harlequin Tactic #3: Dance in the Void

Take Voidweavers, as they are better than bikes for anti-vehicle shooting. They can move, advance, and shoot better than most other Saedath options. Haywire is now deadlier than vehicles.

Harlequin Tactic #4: Ignorance is O-Bliss-eration

Ignore invluns with the Oblivion’s Caress Stratagem. This is ideal to use when targets have good invulns.. Use Harlequin’s caress, Harlequin’s kiss, and Harlequin’s embrace in a way that aligns with tjhe Oblivion’s Caress Stratagem. You can combine this with the A Deadly Embrace Stratagem to maximize damage from a Harlequin Unit.When you take squads of Harlequin Troupes, take one weapon as the majority but sprinkle in one or two of other types.

Harlequin Tactic #5: Delightful Dance of Damage and Death

The +1 damage is now locked behind simple infantry units. Bikes can’t use the +1 damage ability anymore, but you can circumvent that problem by using psychic awakenings. The Psychic Awakening book is replaced by this codex. The +1 damage strat will be key in taking out Custodes and other 3 wound models.

Bonus Tactics and Tips for 9th Edition Harlequins

Harlequins Bonus Tip #1: I’m a Survivor:

These bardic badasses tend to be mighty but fragile. To help keep their survivability high,The Ghoulmask Relic, only usable by Dark Saedath, can shut down Objective Secured–with Harlequins, strategically unlocking < keywords > paths can lead to an optimized army.

Harlequins Bonus Tip #2: Close Quarters

Focus on melee combat and Voidweavers when using 9th Edition Harlequins. 

Reinforcements Have Arrived…in Style: Add Harlequin units as a separate detachment in a Craftworld army without losing the awesome Craftworld army bonuses, such as strands of fate.

  • Dance in the Void: Take Voidweavers, as they are better than bikes for anti-vehicle shooting. They can move, advance, and shoot better than most other Saedath options.
  • Main Part, Supporting Chorus of Destruction: When you take squads of Harlequin Troupes, take one weapon as the majority but sprinkle in one or two of other types.

Ignorance is O-Bliss-eration: Ignore invluns with the Oblivion’s Caress Stratagem. This is ideal to use when targets have good invulns.a Stratagem.

  • Delightful Dance of Damage and Death: The +1 damage is now locked behind simple infantry units. Bikes can’t use the +1 damage ability anymore, but you can circumvent that problem by using psychic awakenings. 
  • Bloodlust Satiated: Use Harlequin’s caress, Harlequin’s kiss, and Harlequin’s embrace in a way that aligns with a specific Stratagem. 

Close Quarters: Focus on melee combat and Voidweavers when using 9th Edition Harlequins. 

  • Speedy Seduction: You can now take Voidweavers in squads of 3, so now you can take 9, and they’re better at killing vehicles than bikes are.

Bonus Harlequin 9th Edition Tactic: How to Use a Webway Gate Strategically with 9th Edition Harlequins

One of the coolest looking Warhammer terrain features, a Webway Gate allows sneaky teleportation and strikes from your Harlequins. As they traverse the labyrinth more easily than most, Harlequins can reappear in a flurry of colorful surprise elsewhere on the battlefield. Webway Gates are important because they work in conjunction with a custom Stratagem. Any Stratagems that combo with the Harlequins coming from reserves would be useful with Webway Gate terrain features, as the Webway Gate is best used for deep striking from reserves.

Frequently Asked Questions About Aeldari and Harlequin Tactics for Warhammer 9th Edition

Warhammer 40k Harlequin Dark Eldar
Warhammer 40k Harlequin Dark Eldar by Bierkobold

What is the Black Library?

Games Workshop named their book division “Black Library” for a reason–this is an iconic feature of the Warhammer Universe. The Black Library has forbidden knowledge and details about the Ruinous Powers which exist elusively in Webway passages. The Black Library is actually a clandestine Asuryani Craftworld in itself. Contained within are sorceries as old as the creation of Slaanesh, or “She Who Thirsts,” a hedonistic Chaos God brought into being by the orgiastic, blood lust behavior of the Aeldari. To put it mildly, the behaviors that birthed Slaanesh were excessively decadent. 

What’s Different About Harlequins in 9th Edition? 

There are no longer Harlequin Masques–instead, the detachments consist of The Saedaths, Light, Dark, and Twilight. This is unfortunate for Harlequin players who purchased and painted Harlequin Masque models, especially considering the elaborate detail required to create a brilliant paint scheme for Harlequins.

What are the Relics like for Harlequins in 9th Edition? 

The Storied Sword, The Suit of Hidden Knives, and Crescendo are exceptionally effective relics. 

Are Eldar good in 9th Edition Warhammer?

Yes, the 9th Edition Aeldari codex is among the best. Harlequin fans won’t be disappointed. 

What Armies Should You Play 9th Edition Eldar Against?

The Aeldari of 9th Edition are good versus most armies, but perform especially well against T’au and Custodes because Aeldari have good melee abilities to beat T’au. They’re much faster than Custodes and can play objective-based games well.

Are All Eldar female? 

No. Aeldari have females and males among their ranks. Their appearance may also suggest more genders, and their Chaos God Slaanesh is known both as “She Who Thirsts” but is also called a prince, making for an interesting discussion about gender in Warhammer 9th Edition.

What Happened to Eldar 40k?

Unari are still the main thing with Aeldari, and more and more of them are joining Unari’s cause to fight to bring about Ynnid’s awakening.

Are Eldar still in 40K in 9th Edition?

Yes, and these are the tactics for them. Aeldari 9th Edition came out in February, 2022.\

Are there Dark Eldar in 40k? 

Yes, but as of February 2022, the last update Dark Eldar received was in Spring 2021.

Are Eldar Physically Stronger Than Humans? 

Without gear, Aeldari are more agile and faster than humans. Geared up, humans and Eldar can be an even match.

Are Harlequins Asuryani in 9th Edition?

Harlequins are not Asuryani. Asuryani is the name for Craftworld Eldar now; Harlequins get the new Saedath keyword. 

What do the Eldar Call Themselves? 

Aeldari call themselves “Children of Stars.” These space elves lean hard into their origins. 

Can Eldar and Dark Eldar fight together in 9th Edition?

Yes, Dark Eldar and Aeldari can still fight together in Warhammer 9th edition, but it doesn’t really benefit either of them unless you’re using Ynnari 

Are there half Eldar? 

Yes, there are half-Aeldari. Half Eldar are only half human and half eldar, and do not exist in any other combination of species. Furthermore, there are only a few of them. 

What is the meaning of the name Eldar? 

It’s not a secret hidden in the depths of The Black Library: Eldar, or Aeldari in 9th Edition, is just a fancy way to say “space elves.”

Using the tactics in this article, you’re on your way to being able to maneuver and manipulate to get outcomes you want with a Harlequin army or detachment in 9th edition. 

Have you given our Harlequin Warhammer 9th Edition tactics a try? Let us know what works and what we might have missed about 9th Edition Harlequins Tactics in our Facebook group. 

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