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Tutorial Wood Elf Tactica

Discussion in 'Lizardmen & Saurian Ancients Tactics' started by latedave, May 26, 2015.

  1. latedave
    Skink

    latedave New Member

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    Introduction:

    So my third tactica of the site, I don’t own a Wood Elf army but I have the Army book and have played regularly against a very good player at my club. I’m therefore confident I can give a good assessment of their strengths and weaknesses and hopefully share my experiences around.

    Strengths:

    Wood Elves had a very old army book until recently which unfortunately only had a couple of different builds in it; in addition they had very limited access to the magic lores whilst now they have access to all them! The new army book is much more flexible and whilst I wouldn’t say everything is viable, it does lend itself to a few more strategies:

    First up Wood Elves are fantastic at fighting in woods as you’d expect. Never, ever charge a Wood Elf unit in a wood unless you’re absolutely confident of beating them. You don’t get rank bonuses and they fight with an extra rank, re-rolling ones. Any Wood Elf mage also gets a +1 from casting inside a wood so expect to be baited a lot by mages inside units sitting temptingly inside some trees for you to charge. Finally they also get an extra full rank for shooting which isn’t as annoying but still helps with some of their core units.

    Wood Elf units with the Forest Spirit rule get a 6+ ward save which unlike the old one, isn’t negated by magic weapons, it isn’t much but it’s something .

    Additionally they still get their free wood which means even if you’ve done your best to sabotage the terrain some of the above will still apply. Speaking of woods the new codex also has a couple of ways for Wood Elves to switch units between forests and add some news ones so be wary about units that look exposed.

    Whilst core Wood Elf units have become much better at fighting, the strength of the book still lies with its shooting. The book now includes a veritable Swiss army knife of arrows, the important ones are:

    Arcane Bodkins: -3 AP, whilst nasty in negating our saves they don’t help Wood Elves wound our models which is their main problem and they’re also expensive to buy.

    Hagbane: Poison shots, definitely a preferred choice against LM where wounding us is a problem anyway and our rank and file doesn’t have great saves.

    Moonfire Arrows: Another one we’re likely to see, flaming and +1 to wound against order.

    Starfire Arrows: We’re not destruction, so not relevant to us.

    Trueflight Arrows: No penalties for shooting, more hits = more wounds, expect to see this, particularly on Glade Guard.

    Swiftshiver shards: Multiple fire shots, I personally think poison is more dangerous for us and this needs to have the unit buffed to get some reliable hits.

    Not every unit has access to the above, the ones who do are anything with ‘Glade’ in front of them and scouts.

    The main spine of Wood Elves is in their flexibility. Units like Waywatchers can eliminate heavily armoured targets and although they don’t ignore the penalties for moving and shooting anymore they can still move around the board rapidly, picking their fights and slowly whittling down less mobile opponents (like LM for instance). They’re a finesse army, not easy to use but in the hands of the right opponent, still lethal. Some of their old units have taken a hit but Treemen and Treekin are still heavy hitting and the crème de la crème are the Wild Riders who will make absolute mincemeat of a unit of Saurus on the charge.

    Weaknesses:

    Wood Elves couldn’t take a punch in the old book and whilst they certainly swing much harder in the new one the old weaknesses are still true, bark doesn’t make for great armour unfortunately. Things like skink skirmish clouds, Salamanders and Razordons are all painful to Wood Elves, especially when buffed by Hand of Glory or Move between Worlds.

    Although they are very fast and hit very hard Wood Elves struggle to deal with high T troops who can take the initial punch. Ultimately they’re T3, S3 models and with the majority of our core at T4 it’s difficult for them to put enough of our troops down before we manage to pin them into some combat. The key thing to remember is that many of their units won’t care about range, modifications or will have such high BS that it’s fairly meaningless. Even camo skinks will be dropped quickly from close range so you want to keep a Wood Elf’s mind focused on the massed block of infantry rather than your harassing units. Chamo skinks are actually excellent in a defensive role, WE players have lots of units that can appear in your back lines so something that can reliably snipe them is very helpful and they don’t have any armour either!

    The key to beating WE is to ignore their harassing units and go for the big expensive stuff in the centre. Anything high toughness that can survive a few rounds of shooting (Steggies, Scar Vet’s, Old Blood’s, Temple Guard) are usually a good choice but be wary of Waywatchers with their ability to ignore armour saves. Don’t be too quick to dismiss combat as a wash either, Eternal Guard are very effective in combat and stubborn and their high leadership means they’re all be unbreakable near a BSB. You won’t enjoy WS5 AP hits either although like all WE units they don’t like it if you hit them back.

    I feel it’s a general litany from me but it’s never truer in this situation, large blocks of infantry backed up with some harassing units are key, smaller units are begging to be shot off the table by WE and once they’ve established a VP lead you’ll never catch them. Don’t let them take the opportunity. The exception to that is Wild Riders who you must, must try and prevent from getting the charge, they are a prime target for magic and shooting.

    Ultimately as an MSU army WE will want to pick their charges and pick their targets, the more you can do to disrupt and pin them into a corner, the harder they’ll find the matchup. LM are a bad choice anyway for them as they rely on causing panic through shooting tests which we’re unlikely to fail and our natural T makes it difficult for them. I’ll cover some of the typical army build types later;

    So onto the review proper:


    Lords:

    Glade Lord: All the usual strengths of an Elf Lord with the same weaknesses as well. Expect to see him being more shooty than fighty and taken for the 10” LD bubble. If he is fighty he’ll probably have a sword of might or something similar to try and compensate for the low base strength. If he goes into a matchup against your Old Blood you should be beating him 9 times out of 10. With his natural high BS and ability to take magic arrows Swiftshiver is quite popular as it lets him pump out 8 shots and not care about the modifier.

    He and the Glade Captain also have this weird auto hit S3 rule (Arrow of Kurnous) against your general if he’s within 36”, not a big worry for the Slann but just something to remember if you get him reduced in wounds.

    Treeman Ancient: As a large target he does hand out an 18” 10 ld bubble but I really don’t view WE as having many ld problems, you tend to wipe them out rather than them break. After that it goes down fast, a tough lvl 2 wizard is quite nice (and you can upgrade) but at 290 pts base he’s a big investment for something that can’t fight too well, still, he’s much tougher than an average wizard and doubles up as a low level monster hunter in smaller point games.

    Spellweaver: At 70 pts less than the Treeman and starting at lvl 4 expect to see this as a Lord choice frequently. WE’s now get ALL the lores making their magic phase, whilst not spectacular, much better than it used to be. He’s also got 100 pts of magic items so might take the Acorn of Ages.

    Heroes:

    Glade Captain: Also has the Arrow of Kurnous rule and the standard BSB choice. Likely to have a bow and be with the Glade Guard or Eternal Guard or buzzing around on an Eagle. He’s still pretty squishy so worth a crack at a challenge if you can get Scar Vet into contact with him.

    Shadow Dancer: Actually pretty dangerous although I8 is wasted on us, WS8 isn’t. Gets the Wardancer dances so 3++ ward save helps a lot with being squishy. Expect to see with Glittering scales in with a unit of Eternal Guard removing rank bonuses of whatever they’re facing. For 100 pts a bargain in my view. She can also be upgraded to a Lore of Shadow Wizard which can be unpleasant with the Lore attribute if you think you’re about to nail Spellweaver and he gets swapped out.

    Waystalker: Hero version of the Waywatcher with 25 pts of magic items, fortunately not enough for the Hail of Doom arrow which would be a little broken. Most likely to be seen with the Bow of Loren for an extra ignore armour shot but I’d take the view it’s just points that should have been spent on more Waywatchers. Still no armour save to speak of so has all the same weaknesses. Oh one tip from personal experience however, don’t let your opponent cast Savage Beast of Horrors on him, BS 7 with 5 shots suddenly isn’t funny.

    Spellsinger: Very cheap basic mage, can’t take the WE high/ dark magic lore but otherwise a sound choice. Cheap to upgrade to lvl 2 as well at 35 pts.

    Branchwraith: Better in small games where lvl1 isn’t such a drawback as a wizard but quite cheap (75pts). Expect to see in units of Treekin or Dryads where they synergise well and also is a great target for beast spells or shadow if Spellweaver gets in a pinch as it’s not bad in a fight (WS6, I7, 3A).

    Special Characters:

    A disclaimer here, most of these have been fought at 5k-10k point games so if I sound blasé I’m not saying you shouldn’t not panic if they turn up as your opponents entire Lord allowance!

    Orion, King of the Woods: A quintessential glass cannon. Fantastic stats with most things 8 or higher apart from unfortunately, the 3 important ones. He’s T5 with 5 wounds and a 5++. He gives every WE unit with 6” Devastating charge so expect to see him close to Wild Riders and Eternal Guard. He’s got a bow that doubles as either a multi shot weapon or a bolt thrower. There’s also an option to take a couple of hounds for extra wounds and they’re fluffy if nothing else. He’s also a chance of getting wounds back on a 6. Against LM however, he starts to struggle. Temple Guard at S5 are a major problem and although he thunderstomps at S6 he’ll still get broken by combat res. Alternatively an Old Blood on a Cold One with a piranha blade and armour of destiny creams him. What you don’t want him doing is cleaving through your dino’s as he’ll make short work of them and start to rapidly make his (600!) points back.

    Naestra and Arahan: The twins are a little odd. They’re a bit of a nightmare to work out special rule wise, expect to see them on a great eagle rather than a dragon because of the following; Essentially thanks for the conjoined rule, if one twin is still alive at the end of the phase the other one comes back to life. Because of the way mounts work under GW rules the Eagle actually INCREASES their wound count! In addition they have a couple of tasty magic bows, one S5 D6 shots (the worrying one for us) and one that fires 2d6 poisoned shots at S1, the former also gives wounds back if she wounds with it. I’m still on the fence about how effective they really are for a large points investment (275) but they are very annoying to kill and thanks to the eagle, pin down in close combat.

    Durthu: Basically a pumped up Treeman but still flammable so the flaming banner is pretty painful for him. Unfortunately we don’t have a lot to take him out from range and thanks to a reasonable armour save he’s likely to make it into combat if you stick to shooting alone where he will make mincemeat of rank and file. He also has a 2D6 S2, killing blow attack. Unfortunately for him he still has terrible initiative so get an Old Blood with piranha blade into him and he’ll drop fast, he’s a choice target for beast spells though so don’t let your opponent get any off. Armour of Destiny is helpful as well as he’s going to wreck your AS if he survives to strike back. Still, he’s just shy of 400 points which is a heck of an investment for a lvl 1 wizard.Krox also will make short work of him if you’re using them.

    Araloth: Has a number of interesting special rules which make him quite a good mage hunter and is very mobile. Unfortunately for him unless you’re running an Etheral Slann (and then amusingly he can’t actually hurt you except through combat res) he’s not going to get the opportunity to use them which instead makes him a big waste of points. The S4 hit within 18” causing blindness is annoying but the Slann’s going nowhere near combat and we have more than enough wounds, plus a ward to shrug it off. Still, it’s potentially 3 auto hit’s we could be taking a turn if both the Glade characters are in play as well. If you want to kill him it won’t take a lot of effort, he’s only got a 6+ AS although he does a have 4++ ward. He’s also unbreakable on his own which can lead to some moments of foolish bravery from WE players who forget how easy he is to butcher.

    Core:

    Dyrads: The source of much despair for Wood Elf players with the changes in the rulebook but personally I don’t think 2A models with hatred, immune to psych at I5 and WS4 for 11 pts a model is much to get upset about. On the downside they’re only S3 and have 6++ward save and nothing else so only get really worried if they’re hitting you in the flank (which unfortunately is where any good WE player will position them).

    Eternal Guard: These guys are good, stubborn, WS5, ASF and armour piercing. Still only S3 but they actually have a save unlike most WE of 5+ and they are very, very unlikely to break, especially near the BSB. They’re 11 pts a model which is very reasonable for what you get. They tend to be used in small numbers as a character bunker but I once faced a horde of 40 and that didn’t go well… We’ll win in a grindfest eventually but don’t expect the unit you use to be doing much after.

    Glade Guard: Unfortunately with so many good shooting options in the WE book these guys are a little overpriced. Once you start adding in magic arrows they get very expensive fast and they have zero armour. 12 points a model basic but they’ll normally be around the 15 mark with upgrades, skink skirmishers will have a field day as they’re normally going to be targeting our infantry units and it’s one of the few units we won’t get modifiers for shooting at. I wouldn’t go so far as to say if you see these ‘rejoice’ but I would say it probably means less of the really nasty stuff.

    Glade Riders: Fast light cavalry who ambush. We don’t have warmachines for them to hunt so whilst they are irritating they’re not a major threat. However, watch for them harassing units with magic arrows from the back lines, still for 19- 23 pts a model that’s some expensive harassment.

    Special:

    Deep Wood Scouts: They’re 13 points a model with scout and skirmish. I’m not totally sold on them being worth that but they can buy magic arrows and poisoned shots will be a threat to our sallies and razordons, steggies generally will have the armour to shrug them off.

    Sisters of the Thorn: First up, they’re 26 points so they’re expensive. For that, a WE player gets a unit that can cast two spells and has a pretty good lore attribute. They also have 4++ ward and are BS and WS5. What makes them interesting is they’re allowed characters and don’t have the downsides of Wild Riders with frenzy. The common use seems to be as a bunker for Spell Weaver, particularly as they’re quite resilient. The two spells are a bit mixed, shield of thorns is ok, curse of Anhranheir is pretty good but taking 20 for a +3 bonus for casting is insanity. Expect to see them in units of 5 bunkering WE magic users.

    Treekin: Strangely unpopular with WE players but I think they’re rather good. 45 pts for a S4, T5 model with 3 attacks plus a stomp seems like a bit of bargain to me. They even get a 6++ ward. Since there’s no longer a limit on unit size you might even see them in a horde. However, they are flammable and vulnerable to anything high strength so they’re more likely to be aimed at your flank.

    Wardancer Troupe: Almost the opposite of the above, hugely popular with WE players but I can’t see the appeal. 15 points gets you three different types of dances, rank bonus disruption, 3++ or armour piercing. WS6 and of course ASF but they’re S3, T3 and only have 6++ ward. If you see them in anything over five models, laugh because your opponent plans to actually have a straight up fight. If you see them in units of five be careful as they’re planning to get a multi charge off and then remove your rank bonus which can be painful for the unprepared, don’t forget you still get steadfast though.

    Wild Riders: Arguably one of the best units in the new book although they are very reliant on getting the charge. 3S5 with AP and 2 S4 attacks at I5 with ASF is, well it’s brutal. Frenzy of course means they’re immune to pych, really their only weakness is they’re relatively expensive at 26pts a model and they drop to only 2 S4 AP attacks if they get charged but that’s unfortunately pretty unlikely for us. They also only have 4+, 6++ save but that’s positively armour plated for WE.

    Warhawk Riders: These guys are quick and also pretty decent in a fight as well, better than our Ripperdactyls for instance. 3 S4 hits, one with AP and 2 with KB on the charge and a stomp. All for only 45 points and of course they fly, I think it’s pretty close between them and Pegasus knights for some of the best flying units in the game. A priority target although you’re unlikely to be allowed the luxury of picking the fight.

    Wildwood Rangers: Great Weapon wielding Wood Elves. Actually quite dangerous against us as they get an extra attack against anything which causes fear or terror so be careful with the shrieking blade trick on Temple Guard for instance. Decent value for their points in the right situation.

    Rare:

    Great Eagle: Not mandatory like they used to be as a redirector, thanks to Warhawks now competing but still have their place. No armour save makes them skink fodder however.

    Waywatchers: Best unit in the book in my opinion. They can either fire multiple shots or ignore armour and at BS5 they’re going to be hitting a lot. The only thing that prevents them from going to to downright lethal against us is that they’re only S3 so wounding our Scar Vet’s and Old Blood’s on 6’s. Expect to see them going after high value targets but they are very expensive. One nice trick is to stick an Old Blood on a cold one temptingly out to one side with tricksters helm. Your opponent will probably have two units of five and if they’re both shooting at him you should be able to ignore them for pretty much the whole game as he curses the re-roll to wound. However, don’t let him get Withering off!

    Treeman: A real shame they took a hit as I used to love the older models. Five wounds, T6 and 3+ AS sounds good on paper (plus a 6++) and five attacks are nice but it’s very expensive for quite a static model. Unfortunately that’s where the good news ends for us as they also gave it tree whack, D6 hits instead of its base attacks, ignore armour save which tests on… initiative. It actually makes it very problematic to kill as all our best units have low initiative and rely on good armour saves. My best suggestion I’m afraid is get in a multi charge and take it down through static combat res (flaming banner helps a lot) or lots of skink poison shots but with a 3+ save it’ll take a while. Alternatively getting a Bastiladon nearby also helps take the chance of failure from 50% to only 33% for an Old Blood or Scar Vet.

    Finally if you have a unit of Krox they will make mincemeat of him and don’t care about the Thunderstomp, Skrox also work but you’ll bleed combat res.

    Mounts:

    Elven Steed: Cheap, M9 and Forest Strider, a bugger for us to catch and a good choice for WE characters.

    Great Stag: No lookout sir but we only have the giant bow anyway. Quite good as its monstrous so gets a stomp and adds a wound.

    Great Eagle: Good choice for the BSB as it makes him very mobile and again, adds a wound. I think it’s slightly the better of the two ‘great’ mounts.

    Unicorn: The fighty horse, weirdly however it can’t be taken by any of the fighty characters. It does however make a mage a bit more of a threat against your unit champion.

    Forest Dragon: As dragons go, pretty good. Has a low S breath weapon that ignores armour and fairly standard dragon stats. Really though it’s main use is to give the Glade Lord some mobility and to get him behind our units which turns it from ‘annoying’ to ‘extremely dangerous’. We also have very little that can kill it outside of combat so it’ll lead your Old Blood in a merry chase if you’re not careful. As always with monsters, Piranha blade and Armour of Destiny or Dawnstone combo is very effective. Depending on how the Lord is geared you might even want to kill the dragon first.

    Magic Items:

    Spirit Sword: A more expensive Obsidian Blade, unfortunately it also involves taking a leadership test if we take a wound which we’re likely to be losing by 2. However, it doesn’t help with WE major issue which is hurting us in the first place.

    Daith’s Reaper: Pretty ok for 50 pts, re-rolls to hit is sort of pointless for WE but re-rolls to wound and forcing and AS re-roll helps them against armoured opponents. Unfortunately re-rolling a 2+ save isn’t likely to be all that difficult…

    Bow of Loren: Adds an extra +1 attack for shooting, usually seen on a Glade Lord for 5 BS 7 shots but they’re still only S3. You can also add it to a Waystalker for an extra armour ignore shot which is the better option in my view.

    Helm of the Hunt: Devastating charge and +1 WS, it’s cheap but WE characters don’t tend to operate as lone cowboys much.

    Moonstone of the Hidden Ways: I like this item, it’s fluffy and it allows WE to teleport between woods which feels quite cool. Unfortunately the unit has to fit in the woods in its entirety, it can’t charge and it relies on having more than 1 wood on the table which is why…

    Acorn of the Ages: … should be great as it allows you to drop in D3 woods. 100 pts though! I just struggle to believe it’s worth 100 pts, 50 would be more reasonable.

    Hail of Doom Arrow: S4, 3D6 hits, AP. Potentially quite a problem for us as we do operate with quite a few lone units that make tempting targets. Against a Scar Vet for instance it’s going to average 3 wounds at -2 to the AS but it’ll wipe Sallies and lone Razordons’/ Chief’s on rippers. At 30 pts therefore it’ll easily make its points back.

    Calaingor’s Stave: Bit of a mystery this, you get to swap a spell out for tree singing. I suppose if the WE player has a cunning plan around putting lots of forests on the board it could be annoying but unfortunately it only affects woods within 12” even at full whack. The 2D6 S4 hits are ok if you get touched by the wood but otherwise you’re only moving the forests 4” forward on average which is a lot of dice to throw at a pretty unimpressive effect. Still, might be worthwhile being aware of it if you’re near a wood.

    Banners:

    Banner of the Eternal Queen: M3 and a chance to be unbreakable for a turn. The trouble is it’s a lot of points for something that WE don’t suffer a lot of problems from, morale. I suppose it’s possible it might be in a deathstar unit but I’m not convinced it’s worth the points.

    The Banner of the Hunter King: Vanguard and re-roll first failed charge. I quite like it as it gives the WE player a chance to take a punt on a very long distance chancey charge but there aren’t a lot of candidates to give it who don’t have Vanguard already. Again, unfortunately it’s also very overpriced for what it provides but just be wary of thinking you’re out of average range.

    Woods:

    Something to consider is WE players get to pick the type of free wood, this can lead to some annoying tricks like the venom thicket which gives their unit poisoned attacks or abysmal wood for causing fear. Eternal Guard/ Wildwood Rangers particularly benefit.

    Army Builds:

    Wild Riders: If your opponent has the models this is fairly devastating, minimum core and then Wild Riders supported by characters, although they can be frenzy baited they are insanely dangerous if they hit units, your best hope is to bunker down and weather the charge through steadfast.

    Full shooting: Plays to the WE strengths, keep moving and firing, causing panic checks and gradually eroding the opposition, probably the least dangerous to us as it’ll take a long time to whittle down our core units with S3 shooting.

    Infantry army: Plenty of use of woods to play to WE strengths and takes advantage of the improved Treekin backed by Eternal guard, a Treeman for monster hunting and some Wildwood rangers. Again not terribly dangerous to us as this sort of build hates impact hits and prolonged fights.

    Hybrid Army: By far the most dangerous, small harassing units pick off our redirectors and cowboys whilst Eternal Guard provides the character bunkers. Main hitting power is provided by Wild Riders and Treekin and Dryads in the flanks with standard spear units to hold us up.

    Monster bash: Orion and/or Forest Dragon, Treeman, Treekin and Dryads backed up by shooting and small flanking Wild Riders. Sounds fluffy but actually quite dangerous as most of it moves fast and hits very hard, judicious use of magic and buffing is required but it leaves WE exposed in the magic phase and LD tests.
     
  2. Pinktaco
    Skar-Veteran

    Pinktaco Vessel of the Old Ones Staff Member

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    Good job with the tacticas lately. I do, however, think you could go deeper if you have the time. In some way I feel you've given a very good summary of what the WE consists of.

    I'd love a section of "LM vs WE" where you summarize our units and their strenghts/weaknesses against the WE army. I've only skimmed your tactica, but I'd also love to know how tough you consider the overall match-up. Your army build section comes off as a bit bare-bone. For instance what doe a "full shooting" army consist off and what should we be aware of if we're up against such an army?
    Oh and I might be wrong, but I think a full avoidance list should also be present in the army build section, I mean isn't that what the more hardcore tournament goers use? Avoiding stuff and picking off small targets.

    Overall it's great to see that someone is finally taking up the duty of putting out the needed tacticas. And just to be sure, what I wrote are merely suggestions. :)
     
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  3. Man0waR
    Kroxigor

    Man0waR Member

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    Current meta is Sisters of the Thorn with 2 wizards, one with High magic the other with Shadow/Death.
    Acorn + Moonshine.
     
  4. DrMad
    Skink

    DrMad Member

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    Glade Lord has 4 Attacks (=close combat attacks) but only one shooting attack. So Swiftshiver gives him just 2 shots.
     
  5. latedave
    Skink

    latedave New Member

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    Bow of Loren allows the Glade Lord to use his base attacks + 1 for shooting, my interpretation is Swiftshiver would use the base attacks for shooting but even so I've still got the maths wrong as that would make 9:)
     
  6. latedave
    Skink

    latedave New Member

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    Thanks very much, I could certainly do a unit by unit evaluation if you like but a lot of it depends on what a WE player brings.
    For instance, against a shooty army big blocks of core infantry are great as you can weather the shooting. Against a monster bash list it's a very bad idea as you're a walking advert to get thunderstomped which is why I prefer to evaluate them unit by unit and their magic items. That said you're probably right and I should expand the army builds bit a little more (been a bit lazy there but I was running out of steam:))
     
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  7. DrMad
    Skink

    DrMad Member

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    The army book states that enchanted arrows are not allowed for bow of loren. ;)
     
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  8. Pinktaco
    Skar-Veteran

    Pinktaco Vessel of the Old Ones Staff Member

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    No worries. You can always come back at a later point and add on stuff. I still have plenty of things to add on my saurus tactica :p
     
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  9. Scalenex
    Skink Priest

    Scalenex Keeper of the Indexes Staff Member

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    How did I not spot this sooner! Tactica Index spot, coming right up!

    What he said.

    What he said again. Take your time. I have the WE book, and play WE's somewhat often, but the WE player has a monobuild (high shooting), so the the following is theoryhammer

    I think you are underestimating the ability of fast cavalry to run roughshod over our Skirmishing things that are not Razordons.

    I am amazed that no WE player in my meta uses these guys. I've seen how fast High Elf great weapon troops tear up monsters and the Wood Elve's equivalent gets bonus against. They seem to be the quintessential dinosaur or Kroxigor killer.

    Nothing to add here, except it's really really satisfying to take down these things in one round, and most players are so unused to LM taking units of Kroxigor they will not take the necessary precautions to keep their trees away from your Kroxigor's axes.
     
  10. Kugelfang
    Saurus

    Kugelfang Member

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    I appreciate the write up. I can tell you put lots into it. It is very interesting to see a WE perspective from someone who plays against WE often. I am a primarily WE player who plays LM as my 2nd army (Love them both).

    I have been playing WE since the beginning of 8th ed. (my first game with WE was my 2nd game of 8th). As such, I was playing tournaments with the 7th ed. WE book and played a No Forest Spirits/Avoidance list. I did fairly well and it certainly helped my skill level. That said, I agree with some and disagree with some of what you said. I think the balance of play with/play against will make for good discussion and also will be helpful to readers here.


    I agree with much of this and trees are helpful to Wood Elves, but are not key. The best thing they do is drop steadfast for the enemy and give steadfast to skirmishers.

    *Remember that all WE shooting and spears have -1 AS. This is important as they will be shooting you lots and your armor save won't be as useful against str. 3 as normal. Additionally, the arrows are magic, so your poor ethereal Slann has been meta'd away.*



    You won't see these. It only gives -2 AP vs. regular arrows, costs 2 pts more per model, and the Way Watchers can do no armor save for 4 pts more (3 pts more for scouts) with better BS.

    This is going to be in lots of lists. Primarily on scouts or glade riders. It is great against our monsters. Scouts with this should be magicked off the table fast and any glade guard with it should be put in the position of having to hit on 7s (Putting skirmished units in front of the monster they want to target. Keep the monster at 21+".) Tough to do, but these things delete monsters (especially with -1 AS).

    Won't see either of these in all-comers lists. Moonfire if you list against each other. Nothing you can do if that is your style.

    These will be on Glade Guard. This means no characters by themselves and your skirmished troops cannot screen. They will target the soft underbelly of your list. However, GG are not as maneuverable as you would think. Ignore the chaff and pick up the 160 (musician) that these guys are worth...squishy. Nothing I hate more than people going straight for my blocks of GG.

    You MIGHT find this in a list relying on Hand of Glory. Just don't let them get it off on this unit. The buff to BS can make swiftshiver shards amazing for thinning big units. Other than that, this isn't that big a deal and you probably won't see them very often.

    I agree about the flexibility. I have played both shooting/avoidance and a semi-balanced list and flexibility is certainly a big thing. WE thrive on taking out the things you seem to be depending upon.


    While true that those things can hurt wood elves, the skirmishers will probably not be around to do damage. The salamanders will not have large, deep targets other than eternal guard (which the wood elf player will keep far from them if possible). Razordons will do damage, but most stuff they will shoot will be in woods or skirmished.

    I agree completely about your skirmishers. They will die hard to the Trueflight Arrows. Unless you can overwhelm them with targets and then charge or kill, keep the skirmishers in the backfield to deal with other things. Also, your best bet is getting your infantry through to take out whatever they have that is static.

    Remember that getting tied up in combat means they can't shoot you, so it isn't always a bad thing. And forcing the player into a corner is also very good. The corner is bad for them because it means they may overlap units so that you can overrun from one to the next. Take advantage of those rare opportunities. When I play WE I NEVER rely on panic tests. I almost always go for straight killing units. I may go after flank units to try for panic on the flank, but I don't rely on it.


    As has been pointed out, you cannot get 8 shots from swiftshiver. You might see this guy as a cheap Acorn carrier; however, I doubt you will see him.

    The Spellweaver is the key to a WE armies success most of the time. If you can find a way to take out this guy, do it. Target his unit if at all possible.

    Look forward to seeing this character on a mount in a unit of 4++ Sisters of the Thorn with High Magic. This makes the unit resilient and maneuverable due to the high magic attribute of extra wound counters as well as the 4+ ward. High magic can take away our magic items and can destroy our chaff.

    The real killer, IMO, is Shadow magic. This lore, combined with superior shooting can destroy you. It can make your blocks movement -d3 (melkoths) or wither you to a lower toughness. The lower toughness is doubly destructive because they only need it for their shooting, but it is RIP so you really need to dispel it during your magic phase. Obviously the low initiative spells can be very painful for us as well. This is not even mentioning Occums.


    This guy will definitely be in lots of lists as a BSB. The Eagle build is not as big as it was with the 7th ed. book, but still fine. Challenge if you get into combat with him, but you probably won't.

    He is likely to have the Hail of Doom Arrow for 3d6 str. 4 shots. I usually wait until my enemy is close and use it to end a monster or really put the hurt on a unit that has been somewhat whittled down.

    Other than that, he is often just a reroll. He MAY have the Ruby ring, but probably not and since we don't have any regen stuff, we should be fine.


    Don't use this much myself although he might get some play. I don't think getting rid of rank bonus for EG is going to be his best use, but he might go that way. The upgrade to Shadow Lore is a steep price and won't be done too much IMO. Don't worry about this guy unless you have a rerollable armor save cowboy by himself. Then beware the killing blow dance.

    This guy gets better the more there are of them. Beware your AS reliant Old Bloods and Scarvets getting sniped with this guys no AS shots, especially with Bow of Loren as as pointed out above. However, not much of a threat due to our high Toughness.

    This guy will often be a metal mage IMO. So watch your high AS things. Cowboys, bastiladons and TG might take a nasty hit from him.

    I never play the branchwraith (no trees for me!), but I disagree about the level 1 being a problem. He will only be casting wyssans in most games as it is very useful. However, you can probably protect from that spell most times and especially when the WE really need it--when you get into combat with the EG or another unit like them.

    Don't know because I don't play SC much.

    The two problems for the dryads are that they moved down to str.3 and they became ranked. The first is problematic because it means that EG can attack better and with as many attacks (except on the charge). While the dryads are tougher, the EG are stubborn. The 6++ save is pretty meaningless when it comes down to it.
    The bigger problem is becoming ranked. This in itself is not a problem because it means that EG & Dryads could compete for the block troops. However, at a bigger footprint and lack of stubborn, dryads are best as speed bumps, redirectors, etc. The trouble is that they don't have a musician...so think about a ranked redirector without a musician...not so good. That is why you might see them some, but not too often.

    Take advantage of their inability to free reform.


    I don't know of them being used as a char. bunker in my meta. GG do the same job almost as well and get to shoot. Wood elf characters can move from bunker to bunker as well, so a dedicated bunker is not as likely. However, your point about the horde is accurate. Prepare to have to kill all of them. In the meantime, your enemy WE player is killing off the rest of your army while your block is trying to kill off the last EG.

    In other words, don't focus on it unless they have characters in this unit or you need to get the points and can kill it before the end. Tie it up or ignore it.


    I disagree about overcosted. The poison and especially the trueflight arrows are VERY good on these guys. A good WE player will target the threats in order of danger. Skirmishers are actually high on that list, so I don't know that our skinks will las long. If they let you keep your skirmishers, then you should not go after their GG with your skinks. Take out more valuable targets like their cavalry.

    I would say they are more dangerous than you express, but that you will not catch them, so don't bother. If you have some skirmishers near them, then I would go for it. Otherwise, NEVER turn anything around to get them.

    As an avoidance player, I love these guys, but most balanced lists won't have too many of them. Waywatchers do their job better in many cases. HOWEVER, if someone takes them with hagbane arrows (poison), then they are a priority target for magic missiles. They will kill steggies pretty quickly so beware. I repeat, Magic Missiles are the best way to deal with these guys unless the opponent makes a mistake and puts them in charge range.

    I agree with this assessment. The spells are no where near as good as brolocks, but they are a great bunker for high magic spellweavers. Also, more poison makes them a danger for monsters.

    This unit would be fine in an army that wants to fight. However, in Wood elves, the T5 is nice, but isn't substantively better than dryad T4 for much cheaper per wound. The str. 4 is abysmal for a MI.

    So you end up with a block of troops that is not very maneuverable, is toughish to kill, but will probably lose combat. Also, flammable is a hindrance. If you let them get you in the flank, you made a grave error. The lack of musician hinders them.


    I am also surprised these show up in your meta. They needed a boost from their 7th ed. iteration...and didn't get it. They went down in cost, but didn't go down enough to make them the versatile tool they seem destined to be. Their flexibility cannot overcome their cost.

    However, you are right that units of 5-7 are their perfect size. I don't use them for removing flank. I use them for killing blow. This is another threat to our high AS characters. They are also decent road bumps with their 3++ save dance. I charge them in, do 3++ dance to survive the turn, then you kill me on your turn and I wasted a turn of yours for only slightly more than an eagle. I only do this if I don't have KB targets.


    Agree completely. They are great flank chargers, but don't ignore their frontal power too. Remember that the 2 Str.4 attacks are not ASF and they are 28 points if they get shields for that 4+ AS.

    Beware these guys hitting any unit that isn't a solid block.


    I don't think they are a priority target. Everything else in the WE list will take out your chaff as well as these guys can and the WHR can't do a stand up fight. They don't kill armor as well as rippers and their flank charge isn't as killer. Nor do they assassinate as well.

    They are, however, a flexible redirector and chaff killer.


    The shrieking blade isn't too big a problem as they only get the extra attack when in base contact with a fear causer. Also, they are only str.5 whereas EG get str. 3 with armor piercing. The lack of AP is actually painful for the WR. You won't see too many of these. They may hide in a fear causing forest though.

    Again, I must disagree regarding their worth. They are just as important as before as redirector. Warhawks cost much more and can panic from wounds caused. Skinks should target them as you said.

    They are excellent unit that will absolutely obliterate lone models. They are flexible for lots of attacks or no armor save. You hit the nail on the head with withered units.

    Remember that they have extra hand weapons if you choose to charge them.


    I don't ever use this guy, but the tree whack is annoying for LM. Also, the -1 strength it got this edition is odd. Hard to kill, but not too killy to monsters. Charge this guy with your stegs. Remember that the skinks take the ini test!

    Eagle is definitely the best mount for characters. The mount is good, but most mounted units don't need characters other than the sisters.

    There are a couple of combos here:

    Acorn & Moonstone is very nice. Just when you think you got those 15 GG with the lvl 4 in it, the opponent has moved his unit behind your lines and is shooting you from there. So discouraging. Also, be prepared for this to be mixed in with shadow lore attribute shenanigans

    HoDA is nice and is used as described above in the section on the Glade Captain

    Helm might be used on an eagle rider for chaff/warmachine hunting, but we don't have to worry about that.

    Acorn by itself is good but costly. The most common type of forest for it and the free forest (Total d3+1) is the Venom Thicket. The WE don't have to take the dangerous terrain tests but we do. It can be very costly. Second most likely is fear causing if they have WWR.


    Poison attacks isn't the biggest deal, although EG with poison is very nice. The key is the dangerous terrain test. Also, remember than all of their units other than WWR don't care about being in woods. EG are stubborn and nothing else has ranks. So be aware when you run into a forest that the WE want to fight there. Not just for the extra ranks and reroll 1s to wound, but to get rid of your steadfast.

    BEWARE the woods.


    To summarize my keys to beating WE:
    Magic Missiles are VERY useful. Target 1)Way Watchers & Wild Riders 2)Scouts & fast cav 3) Small units of archers with characters (especially if you can shoot afterward)

    Stay focused. Don't turn to the chaff unless you are SURE that you can charge it the next turn. Trap all less mobile things in the corner

    Deploy in the middle. No matter where they deploy, go to the middle.

    Use characters to surprise charge out of your units, but not if the char will be left by himself and get shot to death.
     
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  11. borkbork
    Ripperdactil

    borkbork Active Member

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    I haven't read everything above, but I ll add in my two cents.
    I play vs a wood elf player (not the best one to be honest, actually he is quite bad) on a regula basis but the wood elfs have changed my orc army list completely.

    I have changed the rather standard orc list (SOBU horde, 8 Trolls, NG's, Wolf bosses, wolf chariotsetc) to a very fast shooty list (Wyvern general, Gtilla the hunter, Orc BSB on boar with wolf rider unit, Arok spider, 2x2 trolls, 2 Orc Boar chariots, 2x DD and 1x RL). In theory the new list is more fragile vs shooting, but the speed means you will be in the Wood elfs face in turn 2 and his Glade guard is just not fast enough to get out of the way. And he can't shoot all threats in one or two turns.

    Anyway the things Woodies don't like
    1. fast armies (including movement spells).
    2. armies that can engage them at a distance.
    3. (Fast) Units with both High T and High AS or ward save.

    My wyvern orc list now scored three rather easy victories against them (3 out 3)
    And my Lizards (character heavy list with three cowboys, terradon chief and slann) also won 2 out of 2 games.

    Dont think i fully agree with this. Perhaps it is because of my rather mediocre wood elf oponent, but i felt that having strong fast units on the flanks helps to deny him a lot of manouvering space.But yeah, footsloggers, should probably go in the middle.
     
    Last edited: May 28, 2015
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  12. Kugelfang
    Saurus

    Kugelfang Member

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    Sorry, should have said "Deploy your blocks in the middle." Your flankers should still flank. Just don't put your block on one side or the other or a smart opponent will redeploy their entire army on the other flank.
     
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  13. borkbork
    Ripperdactil

    borkbork Active Member

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    Ok, then we basically agree on this one :)
    Still, highly depending on your list, you could consider puting a block as an early drop on a flanks in an attempt to force or herde your oponent to the other corner of the table.
     
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  14. Kugelfang
    Saurus

    Kugelfang Member

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    If I were the opponent, I would be fine being herded. My list is quite maneuverable. If you have one block on the flank, I can miasma the movement of your other block and then you effectively can't get me with two blocks.
     
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  15. NIGHTBRINGER
    Slann

    NIGHTBRINGER Second Spawning

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