Are Skaven Hordes and spawns too easy? [Poll]

Since the spawn tweaks in the most recent balance patch, we’re now back to fighting a lot more Chaos and Skaven Hordes, with their sections of roamers being more prevalent too.

Quite a few people I play with have mentioned how Skaven can be quite easy to deal with, even on Cata, and so I’ve decided to make a poll to find out how everyone else feels.

Despite the fact that they’re supposed to feel overwhelming, the Health Pools of the other factions make much more pressure. This and the fact that Skaven are much shorter, make dealing with their Specials during Hordes less difficult than the tall high HP Chaos factions.

Things that should be taken into account:

  • Certain buffs to Skaven may upset builds
  • Skaven Hordes alone aren’t supposed to be a big threat, their Specials/Elites/Bosses are
  • Skaven are supposed to feel overwhelming and sneaky


Which do you think is the easiest faction to fight against?

  • Beastmen
  • Chaos
  • Skaven
  • They all feel balanced
  • Other (answer below)

0 voters

How difficult do you find Skaven to fight against? (1 Easier - 5 Harder)

  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5

0 voters

From this on point you are voting on the premise that Skaven spawns may need a tweak, this does not mean these changes will happen, so don’t panick if you find Skaven difficult.

How do you think Skaven can be made more difficult?

(vote for 2 here)

  • More Ambushes
  • More Elites
  • More Specials
  • More Shields in Hordes
  • Higher Horde Health Pools
  • Higher chance of Rat Ogres

0 voters

Should Skaven have even more Ambush-style Hordes, possibly with more Elites/Specials in them too?

  • Yes (more ambushes)
  • No change
  • Ambushes + (Elites/Specials)
  • Ambushes + (Elites)
  • Ambushes + (Specials)

0 voters

Does the Flamer need a buff?

  • Yes
  • No
  • Other (respond below)

0 voters

Are continuous Skaven Hordes from behind fun?

  • No
  • Yes

0 voters

My opinion:
Picking off their Specials/Elites too early in the Horde makes them very easy.

Even though they have two of the most dangerous Disablers in the game (Gutter Runner & Packmaster), I find their Hordes easy and quick to deal with, only having trouble when there’s lots of Shield enemies.

Flamers don’t seem to have a big impact, and are too easily dealt with.

Packmasters spawning inside Hordes or having very close spawns is something I find irritating, and it kind of ruins the little immersion I can have, because I now wonder if every Horde is going to spawn one.

Skaven Hordes which are continuous and from behind are extremely dull.

Stormvermin only feel like a threat if you’re using Weapons with low Armour Penetration. On Legend, if someone is running ranged Skaven breakpoints, they’re a bit of a meme.


I disagree with more shields in hordes not because it doesn’t make sense, but because that should be the realm of Chaos.
I’d dig Chaos getting shielded dudes in hordes every now and then.


I agree aesthetically/lore-wise, but mechanically, the shields are the only thing that slow down how easy rat Hordes feel to cleave down.

Talking about little rats with shields btw, not Stormvermin. That would be way too much.

1 Like

I don’t feel Skaven easier than Chaos hordes… they seem to me pretty balanced. Fighting Chaos hordes it’s more important to have an heavy weapon (but every team should have a player be able to stagger enemies), while Skaven hordes are more numerous and unpredictable with enemy everywhere… this mean an higher chance to be hit.

BUT since the presence of many bugs (enemies that spawn on your back without sound) it’s like if Skaven lost their particularity to appear from nowwhere because every faction can do that (I repeat: since a bug). The solution is to fix these bugs in order to have Chaos and (mainly) Beastmen less random.

Honestly the main problem are the Beastmen… I feel them still too strong.

1 Like

Nono, I think of it the other way around. Aesthetically and lorewise, it makes sense. I mean, clanrats with shields are a staple unit of most skaven armies.
I’m just saying that for the sake of gameplay, having trash with shields should be the realm of chaos, it fits their theme of being a bulkier, tougher enemy than the skaven.

The way the skavens fight, the trash is there to distract us and bog us down while the real heavy hitters hit us while we’re defenseless. The real killers of the skaven are the specials and the rat ogres/stormfiends, and for the sake of that theme I think their hordes should NOT contain clanrats with shields.


The problem with this, for me, is that the Specials become the same Specials you killed on the last Horde, with arguably less threat because the enemies you’re facing are shorter and easier to clear some space against, and Bosses are once, sometimes twice, per non-Lord map.

Generally, I agree with giving enemies a bit more strength. With 2.0 we got a lot of buffs which never got compensated enough and we should slowly begin with some nerfs to get everything in balance again.

That said, I struggle with Skaven more than with Chaos. Not sure why though. I think it is that Skaven are a bit more agile and better at surrounding you. So they get in a hit or two from time to time. In addition to this they don’t give any meaningful THP as their health pool is to low. Chaos is far easier to control and gives more health to the players as well. So that you usually come out with a plus against them.
Also, I like that we have the different faction styles with Skaven hordes having the weakest units but Skaven having the largest rooster of specials. On the other hand we have the uniquely desigend and really strong Beastmen hordes which supplement the Skaven and Chaos units and therefore don’t need any more specials. You actually have to commend FS for not falling in the bad design trap and not adding specials which are copies of other faction units just for the sake of “variety”. Same can be said for shielded Beastmen. They would add nothing new to the game and be redundant.

So as summary: Not sure if Skaven Hordes are to easy. But for me they are at least more dangerous than Chaos.

1 Like

Beastmen I consider one of the weaker factions by now. They have no shields, no berserkers mixed in, only one elite that is a bit more common than a Chaos Warrior and ungors are frankly weaker than slave rats. Gors are still the deadliest foot soldier of all the factions, but they don’t feel unfair anymore, the changes that have been made over the last several millennia were good (if rather slow). They lack variety as a faction and I still hold my opinion that they are unfinished. The minotaur is, however, undeniably the toughest monster to face, due to it’s hard to dodge charge, big stamina damage and the blessed by Tzeentch spinning attacks and instant 180 degree turn-around slaps.

Chaos are probably the simplest faction to face. They’re slower than all the other factions, feel less aggressive, and their health pools don’t help them much when you can simply easily crowd control them, burn them down with a flamethrower or cleave with a greatsword. Chaos Warriors don’t spawn with hordes, so maulers are Chaos equivalent of Stormvermin, which I feel are easier to deal with. Chaos also has less specials, with only blightstormers being the really threatening one during regular battle, and that also disrupts the enemy. Even Chaos Warriors sometimes feel like glorified meat bags, due to how simple it is to constantly stagger and flinch them with various strikes and critical hits. A shield or conflag can basically keep in place several of them. Only as a patrol do they begin to feel significantly more threatening individually.

Skaven are probably the hardest to face by now. They have a lot of specials that synergize with their hordes: packmasters to grab you, assassins that can pounce from the sides, globadiers to force you out of positions and ratling gunners to pew the pew you. Warpfire throwers feel pathetically weak, however, and often times I can stand right in front of one and not even take damage (I think the targeting and hitboxes are a bit bugged here, sometimes they literally do no damage). Skaven are also more numerous, which means more enemies that attack you from various sides. They’re faster than Chaos, and Stormvermin especially are very aggressive in relative numbers with their lunges and sweeping attacks. Plague monks can be especially deadly, and they definitely feel tougher to deal with than Chaos Savages.

None of this may be very easy to tell in Legend, but from the runs that I’ve done in C3O, Skaven feel the toughest to me, with their swarms of shielded enemies, non-stop globadiers and packmasters, groups of Stormvermin and packs of plague monks, as well as the number of slaves all around you. They’re all more aggressive than Chaos is. Beastmen are in second for me, because the constant Bestigor spam in quite annoying, and Gors are quite tough and deadly. Banners are a big force multiplier as well, but they’re generally easy enough to get rid of, and the lack of shields make Beastmen hordes quite easy to cleave. Chaos are the most durable, naturally, especially because their shields are better and the common meat bags that are maulers, but it’s simple to fight them since they’re easier to dodge and crowd control in my opinion.

1 Like

IT simply the lack of variety and we’re all so used to the Skaven now.

Throw in a Warplock Engineer dropping lightning from the sky during a horde to liven things up a bit. Simply adding more of the same of anything doesn’t make it more exciting. Just look at hypertwitch to see that spamming anything and everything doesn’t make things suddenly more exciting.


I mean you SAY that, but at least the group I’m playing with wouldn’t agree.


Ok, Twitch does factor a higher level of excitement to the game, but my point being just adding more stuff isn’t always the best thing to do.


Skaven hordes and ambushes are fine. The problem is that before we had lots of beastmen and they are a harder faction for alot of people, if you played alot you adjusted to them pretty good i would say, and now with the change to beastmen spawns per map the map feels easier in comparison to what we are used to. So i think changing skaven ambushes or enemies wouldn’t fix it, but maybe increasing beastmen back a little bit or putting a Cap per map or area. But it’s a difficult question because players who don’t play alot and didn’t get used to beastmen, beastmen are super hard and for players who got used to them they are challenging but fun (ignoring attack patterns and archers xd).

Adding chaos enemies or elites into hordes are still good and challenging, and ambushes combined with roaming elites or something can add a little danger to fighting those elites. But im one of the players who like beastmen, but i can see why some players don’t like them because they are ‘more difficulty’

Hordes in general need to be more enemies at once and less trickle in. The prolonged never ending horde are the worst would rather have shorter more frequent hordes. Really test positioning/response better and less endurance/chore killing.

1 Like

Context is everything here.

Alone, a Skaven horde is maybe indeed less of a hazard than a Norsemen or Beastmen horde. That’s because of the rule that when an enemy isn’t dangerous if there’s 25 of them, it’s not dangerous if there’s 100 of them either. Even here are exeptions possible though, where the “swarm-factor” applies when enemies come in from all directions with dozens at a time. Take the barrel event on Engines of War, for example. It’s generally regarded as one of the more difficult events, and you won’t convince me that it would be just as hard with the equivalent hitpoints worth of Chaos units pouring in instead. Because they wouldn’t be on you and surround you as fast.

Difficulty in this game has never really been caused by a homogenous horde, however. Difficulty in Vermintide comes from combinations of enemies at unfortunate times and situations. Because of their numbers, Skaven hordes can often amplify the danger of specials better than Norsemen hordes. This becomes very clear when considering the differences between Legend and Cata hordes. (For those who don’t know: in Cata a horde always comes with elites and / or shield units.) And I think a Cata Skaven horde with Shieldvermin or Monks is a lot more dangerous than a Norsemen horde with Maulers or Berserkers, or Beastmen with Bestigors. See also the finale of Fort Bagginsburger, which is considered one of the more difficult ones.

If people consider Skaven hordes too easy compared to the others (don’t feel so myself, especially on Cata), the answer would probably be to have elites mixed in hordes also happen in lower difficulties. Or an extra special, because Skaven specials are generally more dangerous.

And on a different but somewhat related topic: With Skaven hordes now having the swarm-factor, and Beasties having the most dangerous offense, I feel Chaos hordes should have the tank-factor. Not by having more hitpoints and stagger resist than they have now (damage sponginess is the most lazy way to create artificial difficulty), but rather by having them consist of more Marauders than Fanatics.


Skaven is a numbers game… (always more besides). Their quality of units reflects that

Their slaves and clanrats are just that… chaff… stuff to get in the way and buy time for specials and real Skaven units to show how much better they are for the Glory of the Horned rat than their lesser fail-fail kin.

In that regard Lore wise as well as gameplay balance wise I don’t think Skaven units need any buffs, you could make one simple tweak and it would be pretty much fixed. Skaven Hordes last longer (Why?) Because they have the numbers to afford it, besides less Slaves and Clanrats that survive is fewer dumb-meat mouths to feed after battle of course! Longer duration of horde = more time for special respawns, which Skaven have always been about… tie enemies down with numbers / chaff, have specials do the real work… and hey any wutelgi’s players the slaves and clanrat’s just so happen to kill is counted as a bonus

Some people clearly enjoy it, but the nature of that mode being heavily a DPS race turns a lot of people off.

Just spawning more and more enemies I think would start to result in the same situation for most pubs, though not to the same ridiculous degree as hypertwitch.

I agree with this. The jump from Legend to Cata where you suddenly get waves of elites coming at you is pretty big, and Legend could use some of that, as long as it’s properly balanced. Heck, put it in champion or even below. The numbers can be tweaked quite extensively.


Add some monks every wave and i dare guarantee people will be flipping their tables real fast :rofl:

1 Like

To be fair we are fighting Clan Fester which is a failed sub-clan of Clan Pestilens so you would think they would have a few more plague monks in their ranks… :rofl:

Hordes as a concept are extremely limiting in a gameplay and design sense. It may be satisfying to thwack them, but they are also oppressive and restrictive simply by nature of their physical existance. They surround and body block and thus limit options.

Hordes are kind of a one trick pony. They need to be easy to defeat, or their restrictive nature will literally prevent you from playing. Make them a challenge in their own right, and anything added on top (as V2 loves to do do) will instantly become devastating.

Making hordes harder, at all, is the last thing V2 needs. To be honest I’d rather have much less frequent hordes and more focus on the elites for the challenge, but that big of a dream will probably have to wait for V3 or whatever.