Baptism of Fire
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Author:  SpellArcher [ Tue Jan 22, 2013 11:14 am ]
Post subject:  Baptism of Fire


So this thread is now to chart the progress of my Wood Elf army.

First Event

After a long break, Seredain and I fronted up on Saturday once more at the Spread Eagle pub in Wandsworth at another of the one-day events run by OG Games, TO the redoubtable Ol. Comp was light-medium from the Sheffield Slaughter pack, the heaviest I've played under for some years.

The twist for me this time, was that I took Wood Elves. After my last event I felt pretty much that I could no longer improve my list by evolutionary changes. As the painting and modelling side is as important to me as the playing side I dug up my old army, unused for 10 years. A fair bit of work was involved in polishing it up and adding a unit of Treekin, which didn't exist when I last played the army!

To me the comp was a bit of a middle ground between the old SCGT-style hard restrictions and some ideas from the ETC. Noteworthy was that Wood Elves, High Elves and Tomb Kings received an extra 100 pts, Beastmen an extra 200. I am not a fan of this and considered submitting a 2400 list with 625pts of Core! But considering how rusty I would be with the army and that I could be faced with other armies with points additions I took the following:

Highborn, Great Stag, Helm of the Hunt, Stone of Rebirth, Hail of Doom Arrow.
Spellweaver, Lvl 4, Beasts, Scroll.
BSB, Armour of Silvered Steel, Luckstone, Great Weapon (allowed by the comp).

10 Glade Guard
13 Glade Guard, FC, Flaming banner.
8 Dryads
5 Glade Riders
20 Eternal Guard, FC, Razor

6 Treekin, Champion.

7 Waywatchers

2500 pts

At each of the last two events I'd managed to win two games and lose one with my High Elves. So I thought it likely that I would lose two and win one here, as this army is not exactly honed.

Games to come.


Current List

Stag Lord, Ogre Blade, Charmed Shield, 4+ Ward
Spellweaver, Lvl4, Beasts, Opal Amulet, Dispel Scroll, Moonstone
Treeman Ancient, Lvl4
BSB, Horsi, GW, Armour of Destiny, Shield

10 Glade Guard, Hagbane, Standard, Musician
10 Glade Guard, Hagbane, Standard, Musician
21 Eternal Guard, FC, Gleaming Pennant

7 Sisters, Razor, Musician
5 Wild Riders, Eternal Flame, Shields

7 Waywatchers
5 Waywatchers
2 x Eagle


Author:  SpellArcher [ Tue Jan 22, 2013 4:21 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Game One - Dwarfs

My opponent had:

Lord on Shieldbearers, many runes of doom.
BSB, 6" Ward vs ranged rune, other runes.
Runesmith, 2xSpellbreaking, other runes.
Master Engineer

27 Hammerers, HA, GW, Sh.
22 Quarrellers, LA, GW, Sh
22 Quarrellers, LA, GW, Sh

Cannon, Flaming
Cannon, Non-flaming
Stone Thrower, Flaming, S4
Stone Thrower, Non-flaming, S5

So pretty much my worst match up, in my first game! All the war machines were a threat to my Lord and Treeman (and Treekin). My opponent won the roll-off for table edge and chose the side away from the only wood. He castled up virtually in the centre of the table with the Hammerers and characters in the middle, flanked by the two units of Quarrellers. War machines were all deployed behind, no space for my eagle to land of course!

Now I could have hidden and played for a minor loss. But that wouldn't have been much fun, would it? So I put Dryads and Archers in the middle and decided to come forward with the Treekin and Lord on the left and Treeman/Eternal Guard (with BSB) on the right. Glade Riders supported the left and I Scouted the Waywatchers to harrass the Quarrellers on my right flank.

Thankfully, I won first turn and advanced as quickly as possible. I managed to kill off some of the Quarrellers on my right with shooting (WE shooting quite effective here) but magic was a dud. The Treeman survived the first cannon barrage.

Meanwhile on my left I had fired off my Hail of Doom early and taken out a few crossbows but was still not within charge range. I had to hide the Lord behind the Treekin to shield him from cannon. However, these were in a single rank which may have been a mistake, as a cannonball went straight through them and killed the Lord.

Turn two I advanced into charge range and sacrificed my eagle to delay his main unit. But this time the Treeman went down and the templates played merry hell with my Eternal Guard. In his turn he surprisingly charged the right Quarrellers (much depleted from shooting) into my Dryads, beat them on musician and they failed a re-rollable 7 to stand. This was not going well.

Turn three I failed a Treekin charge into his left Quarrellers and they were then flank charged, broken and run down by his main block. I got a stone thrower with Amber Spear and wiped out the other Quarrellers with shooting but my infantry were dying fast and I ran the characters out into the smaller Archer unit.

The game ended with him wiping out the remains of most of my units and me running the characters out behind the cover of a hill. The BSB managed to survive the game but the mage was not so lucky. I also managed to save the Waywatchers.


So not very pretty. But I was not downhearted, it was very educational indeed. Some changes needed to list and play a bit sharper (rusty with Wood Elves) and we would see. One-sided as it was, I felt I always had something to play for and was only just the wrong side of the VP barrier for 0-20. Two games left to get a win...

Meanwhile, Seredain also had not had a happy time. Playing a strong Beastman player he set off on the most appalling run of dice he or his opponent had ever seen. Repeated failed Ld10 tests, rolls of double one for charges, massively fluffed combat rolling, you name it. As he said, one turn yes, maybe two but the whole game?


Not a good start for the site.

Author:  Bolt Thrower [ Tue Jan 22, 2013 4:36 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Ouch. Dwarfs on the first round playing an army that you haven't in some time. Sounds like it was a fairly typical experience against the stunties with a little extra bad luck thrown in on the break test and the failed charge of the Treekin. Love your attitude, though, always something to learn. Hoping you get your win out of the next 2 games!

Author:  SpellArcher [ Tue Jan 22, 2013 5:19 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Thanks BT. It was a good game to play because if I'd played Ethereal VC's or something and run over them I'd have been full of what a great list it was and how well I played. Instead I learned something. Happily I've been on a decent run with my HE's lately, so a loss here did not dent my confidence going into game 2.

Author:  Elessehta of Yvresse [ Wed Jan 23, 2013 11:15 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Twenty Eternal Guard with the AP banner!
My fluffyhammer had one of these, they were much better than i thought they'd be.

Author:  SpellArcher [ Wed Jan 23, 2013 11:20 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Game 2 - Ogres

If I was hoping for an easy time of it after the first game this was swiftly dashed. My opponent was ranked in the UK's top 30 and played the ETC this year, obviously no mug. He brought:

Tyrant, Great Weapon, Flying Carpet, Charmed Shield, 4+ Ward.
BSB, Crown of Command, protective stuff.
Firebelly, Lvl 2, Ruby Ring, Scroll.

9 Ironguts, FC, Standard of Discipline.
3 Bulls, Champion.
3 Bulls, Champion.

5 Mournfangs, Dragonhide.
4 Leadbelchers, Champion.
4 Leadbelchers, Champion.
3 Sabretusks


The comp had taken a hand here. Ironblasters + Mournfangs were 0-2, hence the single cannon and big unit of cats. Clearly I would have an advantage in the magic phase but would have to watch out for the flying Tyrant. So not the strongest Ogre list but still with some teeth.

My opponent deployed with a unit of Bulls and a 'tusk on my extreme left, then Leadbelchers, Ironguts + characters, more Bulls, Tyrant, Ironblaster, Mournfangs, Leadbelchers and the other two 'tusks. I hid my eagle behind a hill on my far left. Then my small Archers, Eternal Guard (in my free wood), Treeman, Dryads, big Archers, Treekin, Lord, Glade Riders. I dropped the Waywatchers into a wood on the right of the field, around the mid-point.

Again, I won first turn and advanced cautiously, eagle and Treeman seeking shelter behind a house centre-left and close to the middle. On the right I shot one 'tusk. My opponent charged the Reavers with the other, stand and shoot took a wound off and I got the other one in combat, reform. The Leadbelchers charged the Waywatchers, rolled big and caught them, ending up in the wood. I then charged these with Treekin+Lord and wiped them out, reforming to prepare for the oncoming Mournfangs which I'd managed to delay at the cost of my eagle.

The Leadbelchers on my left closed to short range and promptly blew my small Archer unit apart. The Treeman went for an average-long flank charge on the Mournfangs, failed and was flanked by the Guts, taking some wounds but holding on re-rollable Stubborn. The Eternal Guard then charged, broke and ran down the left Leadbelchers.

My opponent, blocked by terrain and his own units, reformed the Mournfangs and backed off slightly. I then declared with my Lord, he Held but declared Flee when I also declared with the Treekin. An average roll took him to within 6" of the table edge. At this point both my opponent and I noticed my innocent-looking unit of Glade Riders that I had ghosted in earlier on general principles. They were 18" away, my opponent rolled an 8 for his Flee (god bless Swiftstride!) and off they went. I began to smell the win.

Only it wasn't so simple. The Guts killed my Treeman at the wrong moment, reformed and flank charged my Eternal Guard. I might have held but risked a 50-50 chance to get away, was beaten on the dice roll and destroyed. Suddenly a big gap had opened up between my opponent's victorious units on my left and mine, on my right.

I got in an Amber Spear (having earlier shot out the Charmed Shield) and took 3 wounds from the Tryant. My opponent then flew him at my big Archers and ate the champion. But they held on the General's Ld10 (no re-roll) and he charged in next turn, taking the Tyrant down to 1 wound.

The Ogres then marched steadily across the table, my opponent throwing in a cheeky Conga with his Guts. But the TO appeared to call time, so turn 5 was the last and that was it.


A great game! Still no win but I was becoming happier with how my troops moved and was starting to spot small things I could have done better. The army had held it's own. In some contrast Seredain dealt quite ruthlessly with his Ogre opponent, isolating the Mournfangs and then combo-charging and ripping apart the Gutstar.


Author:  SpellArcher [ Wed Jan 23, 2013 4:03 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Glad to hear it Ele!

Eternal Guard

When I put my list together I was sure I wanted a unit of these. But I only had a limited amount of models, so the Hordes run with success by some guys here and in the US were out of the question. The other main build is to go five-wide, minimising the EG in contact and depending on hitty characters to provide kills. This build generally has tanked-up BSB and Highborn and usually a Spellweaver with Rhymer's Harp hiding in the second rank. It's a powerful unit but not my style, I prefer to spread my eggs and I like fighting Lords fast, so they can get to where the action is.

One of the main advantages of EG is the number of attacks they can generate. So I set out to build a unit that could maximise these vs a 100mm frontage. The unit of 20 plus BSB usually sets up 7-wide. This yields 13 attacks from the front rank, 7 from the second and another 7 from the 3rd on any turn they don't charge, so 27. All very well you might say but my unit of 28 HE Spears deployed 7x4 can do that with ASF on top. It can but EG have certain advantages. Most importantly they are Stubborn as long as the BSB is alive, so no need to go deep for Steadfast. They are WS 5, which helps offensively and defensively also. Lastly they can take the Razor Standard, which gives those S3 attacks a little bite. If you can Wildform the unit, they become S4 AP which is quite respectable.

Now these guys are not Swordmasters and cannot be thrown into combats as if they were. But they are not too bad and they are dependable. Clearly keeping the BSB alive is a priority. I went for Armor of Silvered Steel/Luckstone to give him the best chance of survival. I've seen guys like Lord Anathir run the 4+ Ward armour because of the Killing Blow problem but overall I prefer the raw armour save. WE BSB's cannot match the damage output of the HE equivalent but even the 3 S4 AP attacks are worth having and obviously a spell like Wildform improves that. Not to mention Savage Beast of Horros.

But why take the unit at all? It's expensive, it's combat power is questionable and 20 is stil quite fragile. The reason is, it is great support in a list with big trees. A Treeman is a great road-block but he needs that re-roll to keep him going. Treekin are good fighters (as I've seen already) but they too really need the BSB sometimes. Some players run theirs on an eagle or in a unit of Scouts so he can quickly get to where he needs to be but the BSB in EG is solid and proof vs most shooting and magic. I'm finding that you can keep the EG in close support (much like a HE Spear block with BSB), provide the re-rolls and charge in support if necessary. WE's struggle to get static res and the EG provide that, in addition to any kills they manage to inflict.

Author:  Elithmar [ Wed Jan 23, 2013 6:32 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Shame about the first game, but there's not much you can do against dwarfs. Nice work chasing the mournfangs off in the second game. I don't know much about mournfangs, but I would have thought they would be able to do alright in combat withe the treekin and the lord. Maybe even hold long enough to allow other units to support. I suppose you both thought they were safe though, having forgotten the glade riders.

Looking forward to the next one! It's a very interesting and unique list.

Author:  SpellArcher [ Thu Jan 24, 2013 11:18 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Thanks Eli!

To be honest I'd not even considered that the Mournfangs might flee, they're so big and hard-looking! But Glade Riders are not in many of the top WE lists and I think they are very useful, exactly for situations like this. Just having a unit in your army that can charge 21" gives you more options. The Mournfangs might well have held but my opponent had no troops able to charge in support in his turn so I fancy I'd have beaten them in time.

The list is a stab at Combined Arms with Wood Elves. Overall I'm reasonably happy with how it performed first time out but it definitely needs revision. I am not content to throw down against Dwarfs and just accept that I'm going to lose. Sure it'll always be a hard match-up but I should be building every possible tool into my list to maximise my chances. If that hurts me slightly against other armies, so be it.

Author:  Elessehta of Yvresse [ Thu Jan 24, 2013 1:13 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

The think I liked about them was with ws5 most of the time people were hitting them on 4+, and with Beasts and Curse that was more often than not hitting on 5+, they could hold up units for turns while I moved the other unit round to flank. With the Highborn they were a core choice even, amazing!

Author:  SpellArcher [ Thu Jan 24, 2013 4:17 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Game 3 - Ogres

This was my opponent's first tournament. But he was quick-thinking, I feel he should be a good player in time. He brought:

Slaughtermaster, Lvl4, Maw, stuff.
BSB, stuff.
Firebelly, GW, Scroll.

9 Ironguts, FC, Std of Discipline.
6 Bulls, Bellower.

6 Leadbelchers, Bellower.
4 Mournfangs, Dragonhide.
5 Maneaters, Pistols, Flaming Std, Poison, Stubborn.
2 Sabretusks


So slightly more conventional than the last list but still reined in by the comp. From my left to right he had Bulls+Firebelly, Leadbelchers, Maneaters, Gutstar, Mournfangs, Ironblaster. Not sure about the Sabretusks they did not feature much! In contrast I weighted my left flank to avoid the heavy stuff on my right. I had my Lord+Treekin, Archers (bigger unit in front), Treeman, Eternal Guard, Dryads, Eagle, Glade Riders, Waywatchers. My opponent went first.

On my right the heavy stuff came forward. I ran my Glade Riders up to slow the Mournfangs and shot the Ironblaster with the Waywatchers, taking a wound off. In general he pushed forwards but got tangled up with my light troops and the terrain, not making enough progress towards the centre. The Gutstar at least headed for my left but was slowed by having to round impassible terrain in the centre of the field.

The Ogres also came forwards on my left but more cautiously. A long-range leadbelcher volley took a couple of Archers off and a maxed-out Fireball put two wounsd on the Treekin. In response I advanced with these and threw the Treeman towards the Leadbelchers, who promptly shot two wounds off him. Another two were added by the flaming Maneaters. I then failed a charge and was charged in turn, Bulls+Firebelly into the Lord+Treekin and Leadbelchers into the Treeman.

I challenged the Firebelly out, confident in my Lord's prowess. But he fluffed his attacks and it was left to the Stag to put a couple of wounds on. The Breath Weapon put 5 wounds on me and I had to make three 2+ Ward saves to keep him alive. In contrast the Treekin ripped into the Bulls and I won combat, it stuck though. The Treeman held comfortably against the Leadbelchers with the aid of Strangleroots shooting an Ogre off pre-combat.

In the centre my Dryads danced around the Gutstar and it was further frustrated when a miscast took two levels off the Slaughtermaster. I had to sac the eagle but so far so good here. Next turn I blocked them off with the Dryads as a re-director. Similarly the Mournfangs took ages to round a house and were still being annoyed by the Glade Riders. While the Ironblaster's Grapeshot was not having much joy getting past the -2 to hit of the Waywatchers.

Back on the left, my best unit cranked up the pressure, killing the Firebelly, then breaking and running down the Bulls. My opponent responded by throwing the Flaming Maneaters into the Treeman's combat. These were then charged by the Lord's unit frontally and the Eternal Guard in the flank. The Treeman finally went down but the Ogres were routed en masse and destroyed.

The game had acquired more and more spectators as it went on, which had not helped speed things up! So at the end of turn 4 we looked at playing an extra turn but my opponent suggested we stop. Nothing decisive would have happened next turn and there would be no time for a sixth. Hand-shake.


A win! Seredain did not disappoint either. He's faced Dark Elves twice before at these events and each time a promising position went bad and he ended up with a minor loss. Not this time. Shooting and Flames of the Phoenix caused havoc in the Druchii ranks and were followed up by a punishing combo-charge that swept them from the field. He could scarcely contain his delight (Seredain really doesn't like Dark Elves!).


Author:  Elithmar [ Thu Jan 24, 2013 5:41 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Nice work. I don't really know why the ironguts were so far away though - surely by the time he had to place them (last, I would presume) you would have placed enough units to give him a hint at your final deployment. Or were they pretty central, but still took a while to get there because of impassable terrain?

Anyway, you definitely deserved that win by the sound of it, and it looks like Seredain did well too!

Author:  SpellArcher [ Fri Jan 25, 2013 2:37 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Thanks Eli.

My opponent was overly nervous of the mid-table terrain I think. In addition to the impassible, there were a couple of houses, a wall and a hedge. Awkward but not insurmountable, though I was similarly nervous of it in my first 8th edition tournament games. So I think he decided his big unit of Mournfangs wanted no part of it and he deployed them early on my right flank, probably with the idea of steaming down the table and then rounding the terrain and ploughing through my deployment zone. By the time it came to deploy the Guts I'd still not committed completely so he could either drop them towards my left and face the main strength of my army without the Mournfangs' support or do what he did, put them centre right and hope to pivot around the impassible, in essence wheeling his entire right flank around the centre of the table. The problem was of course that I was able to deal with his units on my left while his big stuff was still tangled up with my light troops. So in retrospect the early Mournfang drop may have been unwise.


So I scored 25/60 tournament points. Not great and neither was the 10th place from 14. But given that I'd expected a win and two losses and actually got a draw as well, I was content. The Dwarf game taught me a lot and the army held up well in the other two games. In particular I really liked the maneouverability, though I felt the lack of a powerful, fast-moving unit. Food for thought. Seredain scored 40/60 and finished 4th, a bit of a comedown by his standards. But really, it was a good comeback after the dice horror of his first game. I'm sure we'll be back for another crack!

Author:  Malossar [ Fri Jan 25, 2013 3:09 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire


Well done Spellarcher. You used your army to good effect and played against some very tough lists with your underpowered Wood Elves! Don't look at your final standings and be disappointed just remember that you played outstanding. You probably could have placed a lot higher if you hadn't had to fight against that damn gunline!

Author:  Elithmar [ Fri Jan 25, 2013 5:52 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

I suppose that just reinforces the idea that the game is won in the deployment phase. I suppose you have to be even more careful with units with huge footprints like ogres.

Author:  Bolt Thrower [ Fri Jan 25, 2013 10:44 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Elithmar of Lothern wrote:
I suppose that just reinforces the idea that the game is won in the deployment phase. I suppose you have to be even more careful with units with huge footprints like ogres.

I agree with this, and feel it is why I lose so much! :lol: I'm a horrible deployer.

Great summary, SA, glad to see that you had a good time AND beat your goal for the tourney.

Author:  SpellArcher [ Sat Jan 26, 2013 4:07 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Thanks for the plaudits guys, much appreciated!



To be honest I thought before the event that this would be a problem for my army because it has fewer drops than my High Elves and this is a big factor in out-deploying your opponent. The trouble is, when you're spending 410pts on a Treekin brick and 315 on Eternal Guard, that tends to limit the number of units. With High Elves you can spend less on units that are nevertheless pretty punchy and so you get more units. Treekin can be smaller and thus cheaper but I believe my army needs one unit that can reliably be thrown into most combats. There are some things the EG should not be touching with a barge pole.

Happily, in the first game I could pretty much put my units where I liked, my opponent had so few drops. The Ogre armies had a similar number of drops to me, which resulted in a pretty even deployment in game 2. Game 3 my opponent probably committed the Mournfangs too early and you're right Eli, the large footprints did not help him to recover this. So I achieved a favourable deployment. Not decisive in itself but instead of backing off desperately with the troops facing my left my opponent took me on, with fatal results.

Another advantage of Wood Elves is that once deployed, it is easier than with most armies to redeploy. Skirmishing units and solos like the Treeman can easily turn and march 10" to correct deployment problems. High Elves can do this to an extent with cavalry speed etc but not quite so comprehensively. Obviously, dropping lighter units like eagles first gives little away and preserves your deployment options. But bigger units can also achieve this, if by putting them down you retain flexibility of battle plan until the final elements are committed. For example a unit of combat infantry in the centre can keep the option of weighting either flank with faster troops. If my opponent had put his Guts down early maybe a few inches in front of the centre-point of his baseline, he would have kept the option of advancing them towards either flank. The Mournfangs by contrast should probably have been a late drop slightly to one flank or the other, only made when it had become fairly clear where my combat units were going.


Cal thanks again for the praise. I think I did play well on the whole. As said, the Dwarf game was always going to be tough. If sheer competitiveness had been my only motivation, I'd have hidden my army and taken a 7-13 maybe. But somehow I'd not faced Dwarfs before in 8th so it was important to find out about the mechanics of such a match-up, not just for my Wood Elf learning but also for my High Elves. Next time will still be tough but I will be better armed.

Now clearly comp toned down the Ogre lists, in particular the absence of a second Ironblaster in both games made life much easier for my Lord and Treeman. I think it likely that these lists were still slightly stronger than mine (+100pts notwithstanding). But so far Ogres in general do not seem like a bad match-up with Wood Elves to me. Yes, I'm unlikely to be able to crack even a moderate Gutstar, unless it is devoid of support. But my army seems quite good at picking off the smaller units and avoiding the big stuff. 20-0's are not very likely. But with good play, that 15-5 is repeatable, I'm sure of it.

Author:  Elithmar [ Sat Jan 26, 2013 8:47 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

What are your thoughts on facing dwarfs? I know I'm having a lot of trouble against them too.

Author:  ~Milliardo~ [ Sun Jan 27, 2013 3:43 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Thanks for the reports, SA. Always fun to hear from you :3

Author:  SpellArcher [ Sun Jan 27, 2013 11:06 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

I aim to please!


Fighting Dwarfs

Now obviously I'm far from an expert at this and my comments are going to assume the set-up I faced. I've no idea how I'd factor in an Anvil for example. But I guess the first thing is to decide whether you're going to hide or whether you're going to keep the attacking option. Either way, deploying any vulnerable targets (eg Treeman) behind any terrain that stops cannonballs is an obvious and good start.

Not quite that simple though if you want to reserve an attacking option. Then you need to consider what use you can make of terrain further up the table. Consider deploying infantry two or even one deep to reduce stone thrower damage. This is slightly double-edged because a fighting unit needs to have enough depth to do it's job when it arrives. Swift reforms en route do no cover as much ground as marches. In general, you want all your fighting units marching as quickly as possible forwards.

You are likely to get a pretty good idea of where his units are going before you commit your important stuff. So identify the soft targets (in this case the Quarrellers) and deploy toconcentrate your melee troops against these. Shoot them as you go. War machines lbehind 'cover' are rotten targets for HE shooting and you are unlikely to shoot enough lllmodels off Stubborn Hammerers to make these an attractive charge target.

Treekin are good because they are reasonably durable, can beat Quarrellers in combat andll can shield my Lord and Treeman from cannon fire (this is a trick you can sometimes lpull with eagles too). Eagles are also key to block enemy charges once your combat units get within striking distance. A good Dwarf player will not leave enough room for a flying charge on a war machine.

With HE's you do not have Treemen etc to worry about protecting. A cavalry unit with characters is very useful, it can be in charge range by turn 2 and is hard for the Dwarfs to shoot off. If you deploy this last you can minimise the amount of fire it will take. Wood Elves have the option of their own Lore, which has magical movement spells. It also has spells that protect vs shooting. Similarly spells like Shield and Flesh to Stone can help a HE army here. Ironcurse Icon is worth a look.

Essentially I suppose you need to give your combat units the best chance of getting into the soft targets using all the tools at your disposal.

Author:  Seredain [ Sun Jan 27, 2013 1:51 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Thanks for the summaries SA - they made very interesting reading. You and I spoke about it on site but I think it's worth mentioning here the immense value of fast harassment units in overcoming the mournfang threat. Your glade riders showed how fantastic fast cavalry can be in obtaining early position and placing units who don't want to receive a charge in a horrible position.

In my game against ogres, I found that I could effectively block 4 mournfang with an eagle while safely closing within a decent charge-distance for the helm hammer. The cats didn't want to receive a charge from my knights, but they didn't want to flee either because they were still relatively close to their back edge and (crucially), miles away from the gutstar deployed in the centre. In the end, sniping a nearby cat panicked them (a mistake for him to be that close, but he was high-tailing it over to try and get in the helms' way), but up to that point, the eagle was about to force them to take a charge they really didn't want to take.

Something to note in respect of this tournie was, as you noted, the comp. 0-2 ironblaster + mournfang was a big deal for me, as it was much easier to hide the birds (not too bad on these boards anyway with all their high terrain, but still helpful), and crucially much easier to block the mournfang. 4 cats is a very wide unit: you can both block them with a bird safely but still have plenty of room to keep a path open for a 5-wide knight unit of 3-wide treeken + treeman. Being able to close these units down safely is a really, really big deal.

Had a great time as ever - glad you had fun with the woodies and I'm really looking forward to seeing what you come up with against the dwarfs... You summarised my strategy against them well: put the knights into a soft, expensive target early and force your opponent to adjust. Eagles, DPs and small archers can make this difficult enough that your opponent may want to shoot them instead of the heavy infantry, so if you use your advantages in deployment you can rush a part of the dwarf line quite effectively.

All this depends on the terrain, of course. As it happens, on the three occasions that I've ever played a dwarf gunline I've had a far amount of terrain to ride around. Helps a lot.


Author:  SpellArcher [ Sun Jan 27, 2013 5:43 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

The craic was good, no?


It's always mystified me how we know Reavers to be decent troops but most WE players regard Glade Riders as poor. So far they have been great for me. Now arguably an eagle could have run those Mournfangs off the table just as effectively. In my experience though, eagles are either hiding behind terrain, sat one inch in front of an enemy unit or are dead. They are necessary, no question but this particular base can be covered by GR's in addition to the other jobs they do.

Both Ogres here went for the single Ironblaster and big Mournfang unit which seems logical at first glance. But it's undeniable that a second cannon is a big deal tactically. Similarly, taking 2x3 Mournfangs doubles the fast threat.

What would really help the Dwarf problem is to switch to Wood Elf magic, which was my original concept for the army. This Lore works quite well when you have several big targets that need magical protection and movement buffs, eg in a Dragon list. The problem is, Beasts helps my army's shooting and combat so much that it is better in most other match-kups. I'm inclined for now to see if some changes elsewhere can let me retain Beasts.

Intelligent use of terrain can definitely make a difference, especially for Wood Elves. Several times I noticed opportunities I'd missed here. After a whike I should be spotting this stuff in time. It's worth noting that I actually won first turn in the Dwarf game! With good enough play though, this should not be decisive.

Author:  Iluvatar [ Mon Jan 28, 2013 10:19 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Thanks for that tournament report, it made a nice read! It's also nice to be able to read a little about other armies out there, all while remaining on Ulthuan. Please let us know how it goes with that new (or rather, old, un-dusted :) ) army in the future!

Looking forward to Seredain's reports as well. :wink:

Author:  SpellArcher [ Mon Jan 28, 2013 5:05 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Glad you enjoyed it Illuvatar. While this is a HE site, I feel it's good to see army lists, reports, tactics etc for other armies. Both for their own sake and for HE players to be able to see other perspectives. I'm so committed to the site now I doubt I'd be able to post this up anywhere else! I'm sure Seredain's reports will be well worth waiting for. Though his next report will be on the tournament before.

Personally, I'm really enjoying my WE sojourn. It's very instructivethat this army has both similarities and differences to HE's. Even when list-building, comparison was showing me things like the power of ASF great weapons. In actual play, getting to see first-hand the strengths of Monstrous troops (Treekin are tough!) and skirmishers for example will give me a good grounding for building an army from the new HE book, when it comes.

Author:  joey_boy [ Wed Jan 30, 2013 12:53 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Cool to see you playing WE. And it seems you did pretty well with the army by all accounts :)

I'm not all that keen on the Tree-kin I actually think they are the worst unit in the army bar none. I'd take the equivalent points in Dryads and Glade Guards any day and be happier for it. Seeing as you fought Ogres they are pretty good when hitting on 3+. How did you find they faired against armys with ws4 or higher?

Also, I have been considering Eternal Guard now that the Eagles are so buff. The option of having your characters on Eagles fly around and then join up with the EG when they move up to take a charge have had me reconsider them since I don't need to have all the eggs in the EG-basket. How did you feel about these boys during your games?

It's the same thing with diverters. I have the 2 Eagles, but unlike you who backs them up with Glade Riders I prefer to have 3 Branchwraiths. They are 65p diverters who can all go in the same dryad unit and give me a mini "deathstar" when my Beastweaver sneaks up and bubbles Savage Beast for 18 ws6 s7 at In8 :)

Author:  SpellArcher [ Wed Jan 30, 2013 4:01 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Hi Joey, good to get your input!

(For those that don't know, joey_boy is a top WE player who's done a lot of analysis of combat MSU on asrai.org)


I like them, I have to say. Good point re Ogres, I imagine the WS3 makes a lot of difference. But as these are the only 3 games I've played so far, I'm not really qualified to comment! As long as the Stag Lord is in the list, I think they're almost essential, to block cannon shots. Not enough on it's own against the Dwarves but facing single Ogre cannons was quite comfortable. They are also of course one of only two units he can join, to protect himself from BS shooting/magic and to ramp up combat. Having the Lord's Ld10 around means any lost combats are less dangerous, especially with the BSB's re-roll.

Eternal Guard (again)

As mentioned earlier, I consider close BSB support essential for a list with big trees. Eternal Guard give him security through numbers and as long as he is with them, through Stubborn. The combined unit is a big points-sink but not so much as a full-on EGStar and can be split if necessary.

I like the idea of running the EG alone at times, they are Ld9 after all! Joining them with an eagle rider sounds promising, except wouldn't the M2 be restrictive?

Against Dwarfs they just got shot to pieces, better tactics may mitigate this. We all know how strong Ogres are vs infantry so I needed to be careful there. A couple of successful combats, though I overreached and lost them in the second game.

Combined Arms

My vision for the army is to build as many different units and abilities into it as I can so I have a tool to deal with almost anything. My HE experience suggested it was possible to get by on one eagle and so far my WE's have borne this out. Not comfortable but workable. I'm not keen to take a second if I have an alternative which gives the army another facet.

Funnily enough, I've been strongly considering a Branchwraith! The good thing about my existing characters is that they have good chances of surviving even if I don't get the combat buff off. This is less true of the Branchwraith but then, she is more disposable, hence her second role as re-director. I confess I am also tempted to stick a Spite on her. I think I can stretch to 90pts and I love multi-tasking stuff!

Author:  SpellArcher [ Tue May 21, 2013 3:29 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Pride Comes Before A Fall

So once more, I played a one-day event in Wandsworth, at the OG club run by Ol. This promised to be interesting (and strong!), with Seredain, Stormie, Jal and three other High Elf players in attendance. I resolved to stick with the Wood Elves, though I expected to play at least one HE opponent and get a feel for how the new book played.

Comp was the Midlands Open pack, light/medium again. Noteworthy was a restriction to 3 war machines and 100 extra points to Beastmen, TK and Wood Elves. However, I submitted a list to the basic 2400 as I had a roster I was happy with and wanted to test a few things out. Given this and the strength of the field though, I expected to win one game and lose two over the day.

Highborn, Great Stag, Helm of the Hunt, Stone of the Crystal Mere, Hail of Doom Arrow.
Spellweaver, Lvl4, Beasts, Ranu's Heartstone, Ironcurse Icon.
BSB, Armour of Silvered Steel, Luckstone, Great Weapon (as allowed by comp).
Branchwraith, Cluster of Radiants.

13 Glade Guard, FC, Flaming banner.
8 Dryads
5 Glade Riders
20 Eternal Guard, FC, Razor.

6 Treekin
5 Waywatchers


So out went the Stone of Rebirth, replaced with Crystal Mere. I considered Dragonbane Gem/Oaken Armour but Crystal Mere makes better use of the 'free' Wards the Stag Lord comes with. The scroll went (unused in the first event), replaced by Ranu's Heartstone to give a more flexible magic phase. I brought in a Branchwraith to cover defence with Cluster of Radiants and hopefully as a target for Savage Beast and a possible re-director.

The 10-strong archers went, unimpressive in the first three games. To get the Branchwraith in, I had to cut the Treekin Champ and drop two Waywatchers. This though, rendered these semi-disposable at 120 points. All else stayed the same. As stated, this list was pushing things a bit but the first games had given me confidence and if you don't take chances you don't learn.

Though you will of course have noted the title of this post (courtesy of Seredain)...

Games to come.

Author:  Elithmar [ Tue May 21, 2013 7:34 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

I love how you go into an event predicting exactly how many wins and losses you'll get. :D Although I don't like the sound of the title. :?

Nice list. I wonder if the glade riders will do so well this time. Was it mournfangs they ran down last time? :P

Author:  Ryhaleth [ Tue May 21, 2013 9:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Is this the one where Tom Richards destroyed you with Brettonians? Saw one of his most recent reports and he stomped on a Stag Lord, Treekin, Eternal Guard etc. If so, my condolences sir.

Author:  Stormie [ Wed May 22, 2013 1:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Baptism of Fire

Spoilers man!! :shock:

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