Hell Pit Abomination (9/10)
I didn't give it the 10/10 for one reason, Skaven should never have had access to the creature. The hell pit does not fall in line with normal Skaven theatrics. The only random thing is which attack he will do and how far he will travel. Games work shop just added him to the Skaven because everyone else had a giant/big thing, so why not the Skaven? Well I Skaven really do not need him, yet you will find him in 80% of the competitive list out there, because he is actually really good. Worth every point you spend on him giving him an optional 6+ ward save against magic. His weakness is of course fire magic. Any time an opposing wizard cast a fireball type spell at it, your gonna wont to do whatever it takes to dispel those spells, because once the hellpit has taken any fire damage, he will not be able to respawn.
At 2500 points you will see very often 2 Hellpits, usually going up the side flanks, though I normally will just point him towards the nastiness big unit the enemy has. Even if its in the middle. If it can get a charge, you get those d6 str 6 impact hits which are nice, on top of some random amount of damage. With the regeneration and being stubborn at ld 8, he is a very viable solution. Try keeping a BSB near buy, so he can roll doubles for that stubborn LD 8. One m,ore thing is try to get in combat asap, to limit the long range attacks against him.
My suggestion is to only take one at 235 points, and then perhaps a double Doomwheel threat. More targets the better, as your can divert the focus of your opponent.
I personally love the doomwheel, especially at times when it takes on a poor charge from a steam tank, and then lights it up the following with warplightning Zzzzzap!!! :)
Oh the joys this doomwheel as brought me. I have taken down the likes of steam tanks, hydras, and other large daemon creature rolling the sweat 3 d6 Str 10 hits, of course I have also failed with str 2 hits, but they are what Skaven is about, unlike the hellpit. Hellpits attacks are usally always good, no really bad ones.
The doomwheel also has a nice 4+ armor save, does d6+1 str 6 impact hits and causes Terror. On top of all that it has a toughness of 6, which is nothing to sneeze at.
When deploying the doomwheel, i usually will either have it way out on the flanks so that it does do too much damage to me, and I also make sure that there is a small slave unit near by to take any Zzzzap hits. You can also deploy one in the middle, but if you have a DW in the middle(for purposes of taking out a big bad unit), I suggest having at least two in your army, as they excel at goping up the flanks.
At 2500 points, I can see myself taking 2 doomwheels because they are so kewl to have on the battle field, which still allows the option to take other rares, even a hellpit if one was so inclined.
Warp Lightning Cannon (9/10)
At a reduced price of 90 points from the 7th edition to 8th edition, WLC have quickly come a fan favorite as I can put two of these out. Especially now you can measure and not have to guess, they excel as snipers, as I have sniped out a general (yes he rolled a 1 on look out sit)in a large unit, to sniping hydras, highly damaging steam tanks, and other large targets. Zapping a unit with a potential of d6 str 10 hits is too good to be true, and as I was saying earlier. And with the small template at the end is very nice indead. Of course, every 1/6 times it blows up, but what normal Skaven thing doesn't? (stupid hellpit)...
When aiming, it is probably best to aim around 8 inches in front of a unit or 12 inches from the front of the back rank.
PlagueClaw Catapult (6/10)
At 100 points, they aren't as good as Warplightning cannons, but they do have their uses. Against elven/human players that have low toughness scores, these catapults excel. If you need extra firepower then taking one of these can also help, but I probably would go with poison wind mortars, and not take up Rare percentage points here. I might be missing something with them, as I have only played with them once. But as you will soon find out, I will probably be trying them out more, so that I can come back to this post and update this if I find that they are worth their 100 points. But for now I would pass as there are other options more viable to take.
As different combinations that i take for my rares, it depends on how cheesy, or or themed i like to be. I have done well with the following combinations:
2 Hellpits and Doomwheel : Gives three targets opponent has to worry about, and can by them selves wipe out entire armies.
1 Hellpit and 2 Doomwheel and WLC: Gives me a little more options to play with, as I still have 2 toughness 6 Doomwheels coming for you up the flank, and a hellpit headed for the opponents general. Also adding that WLC will allow me to snipe or weaken other units.
2 Doomwheels, 2 WLC, 1 Catapult. Gives a TON of shooting and may be a little cheesy, but what combination isn't.
Maxing out on your 625 points for rares isn't a must, but is fun to watch. Well atleast for you. Playing friendly games against your friends that are also playing none cheezy list, dont do the first option above. 2 Hellpits are just mean. But hey, we are Skaven. Want some Wine with all this cheese?