Sunday, 20 March 2016

Ravening Hordes: Wood Elves out now!

Updated 24/3 with bug fixes and suggestions mentioned in the comments.

When the 8th ed Wood Elf finally came out, I was less than impressed with quite a few of the changes to their rules background. Rather than being a third distinctive Elf army with their own rules and magic, GW decided to simply make them a mish-mash of HE and DE. WE got both their Prowess rules while in a forest, and access to both High and Dark Magic while losing their own lore. While I can see the reasoning behind this, it really detracted from their uniqueness and made them feel like the "neutral" Elves in-between the Good and the Evil Elves, rather than their own thing. This was especially nagging since the Wood Elves have never been Dark Elves (since the Sundering occurred after the Wood Elves had already settled in Athel Loren), hence them using Dark Magic and having murderous prowess in the forest just feels tacked on. So with that in mind, this update brings them back to their roots (pun sort-of intended).

Download 8th Ed 

Download 9th Ed 

  • ASF removed. 
  • Lore of Athel Loren back, with a new spell and lore attribute (both based on Storm of Magic). 
  • WE mages lose access to fire, metal, heavens, death, high and dark magic.
  • Marksman Prowess replaces Forest Stalker, allow re-rolling 1's To Hit with missile weapons.
  • Blackbriar Javelin no longer armour piercing, gain quick to fire.
  • Asrai spears removed (why would their spears be armour piercing, when other elven spears are not?)
  • Arrow of Kurnous removed (abstract rule with no purpose, that also makes no sense. They suddenly forget to pick out characters after this first shot?)
  • Glade Riders are no longer ambushers by default (why would they be, they are missile cavalry!). Can take LA and shields (if people are using the old models).
  • War Hawks are no longer Armour Piercing or have the KB rule (makes no sense since eagles or griffons don't have these rules), 2W each, 38 pts.
  • War Dancers nerfed to 4+ Ward save.
  • Sisters of the Thorn moved to rare.
  • Wild Riders ride Elven Steeds by default, can upgrade to Steed of Kurnous. Only Riders are frenzied.
  • New special unit: Meadow Chariots (from 4th ed).
  • New special unit: Alter Kin (MB, shapeshifting elves)
  • New core unit: Spite Swarm. Upgrades for these will be included in the full release.
  • New hero: Beastmaster.
  • Treeman Ancient limited to Lvl 2 Wizard. 
  • Shadowdancer can take 50 pts of magic items. 
  • Unicorns are WB, not MB.
  • Moonfire, Starfire, Swiftshiver arrows are removed (the latter because Waywatchers already have it by default).
  • Waywatchers may now take enchanted arrows.
  • Eternal Guard weapons added, shields free. 
  • Acorns of Ages moved to Ariel, Rhymer's Harp added. Cheaper magic items in general.
  • Branchwraith no longer a Wizard by default, 65 pts.


  1. 8th edition comments:

    - Beastmaster light armour upgrade?
    - Shadowdancer no magic items?
    - Waystalker, why no 2 attacks, this bugged me with the official book.
    - Shouldn't be the the spite unit be unbreakable, otherwise even with leadership 10 they will lose easly against any ranked unit.
    - Meadow chariot has Cold ones:)
    - What about giving Altar Kin Frenzy?

    Nice work and an improvement in comparison with the official armybook.

    1. Adding more.
      -To take full advantage of Marksmans Prowess, EVERY elven unit should have access to ranged weapons, even dedicated melee ones (if only to soften up opponents before charging or being charged). Spellweavers and Spellsingers should re-gain access to Asrai Longbows and should also be able to take a Blackbriar Longbow instead. Shadowdancers and Wardancers should be able to take Throwing Weapons for 1 point. Eternal Guard, Wildwood Rangers and Wild Riders should have the option for Blackbriar Javelins.
      -Why did you move the Deepwood Scouts from Special to Core. Isn't being placed in special an already existent way to limit their numbers instead of tying their numbers to Glade Guard?
      -Warhawks should be available as a budget mount to characters.
      -Beastmasters, Warhawk Riders and Meadow Chariots should have access to magic arrows as well.
      -Highborn and Glade Captains should be able to replace their Asrai Longbow with Blackbriar Javelins.
      -Branchwraiths should be dropped to WS/BS 5 and I 6 and given 4 attacks to compensate. Gives a better sense of linear progression from Dryad to Branchwraith.
      -Warhawks should be toughness three like Terradons and Ripperdactyls instead of toughness four like the far larger Great Eagle.
      -Steeds of Isha and Kurnous should be available to Wizard characters and Warrior characters respectively. Also as budget mounts.
      -Glade Guard should be able to be upgraded to Skirmishers.
      -The Shadowdancer is a Skirmisher despite characters only being skirmishers when joining a unit of skirmishers.
      -Don't Orc boars only gain +1 strength when charging instead of +2?
      -Why remove those types of enchanted arrows? Also, Hagbane Tips and Trueflight arrows have not received a points drop. I expected there to be a flat drop of 2 points for all enchanted arrows instead of just Arcane Bodkins.

    2. - Beastmasters don't wear armour, it's the same for DE.
      - Will add that, it's a bug.
      - He's not a close combat character, and with two attacks, that means 2 sniper shots with the bow of loren and no armour saves allowed. It would be a bit too efficient.
      - Swarms are unbreakable and unstable by default.
      - Will fix.
      - Sure, no problem.

      - I don't think that's needed, many army books have army special rules that do not apply to all units.
      - They are not really working taking as a special choice, and WE if any army should have access to a lot of scouts.
      - Don't think they need it, the Eagle is essentially the hero version of the warhawk, and it has a dedicated model for it.
      - Sure, can add that.
      - Blackbriar javelins are used exclusively by Sisters of the Thorn, it does not need to be an army-wide weapon.
      - A4 is fine, but since Dryads and WE have the same WS and I, shouldn't the heroes have the same stats too?
      - Seems fair.
      - You have Great Stags and Unicorns already, and they are essentially the hero version of those mounts.
      - You already have scouts with skirmish. Glade Guard with skirmish would allow them to play avoidance too much.
      - Will fix.
      - Nope, it's +2S.
      - +1 To Wound has a similar effect to poison, and felt cluttered with 2 different arrows depending on what alignment you face. Shiftshiver shards takes away from the Waywatchers special rule, and allows you to pepper the foe a little too well with no movement penalty like Stand and Fire. Hagbane and Trueflight were fairly priced already, only Bodkins were overpriced.

    3. -Dryads don't have WS5 BS5 I6 rank and file versions.
      -Would Glade Guard playing avoidance be a bad thing for a guerilla army?
      -Whoops, I was thinking of Juggernauts of Khorne, not orc boars.
      -Are you still going to bring back the ability to take a Asrai Longbow and add the ability to take a Blackbriar Javelin to Spellweavers and Spellsingers.

  2. Yeah that's the reason why i never got myself the new WE book. It just didn't feel right. That's also the reason I'd forget that Warhawks were now MB :P

    I guess Spites should be Unstable like other swarms?

    Looks pretty good and Vazalaar mentioned the bugs already.

    1. OK Deepwood Scouts should be BS4 and I5. They're now like Core Unit Waywatchers without Hawk-eyed Archer special rule.

    2. Unicorn is missing Impale rule (+2 S when charging).

    3. Swarms are always unstable by default.

      Deepwood Scouts should be BS4, yes.

      Uncorn has Impact Hits (1) instead, needs to be updated for 9th ed though.

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    5. Does that mean that Unicorns have Impact Hits (2) when ridden since they would then use the rules for cavalry?
      Regardless, I assume that the same will be true for Nippon's Kirin who are already MC.

    6. Maybe you should make that clearer in the basic ruleset, just for clarity.

    7. Already ahead of you, added it yesterday, will be up in the next upadate :)

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    1. Can captains and high born not take magic arrows anymore? Not having them puts way stalkers at a disadvantage to waywatcher sentinals

    2. I can add that for the Waystalkers too, no problem.

  4. I noticed some problems with your Skaven book.
    -Chieftains are lacking their mount options.
    -The Plague Monks manning a Plague Furnace have the statline of a Rat Ogre instead of a Plague Monk. They are also missing Frenzy.

    1. - Chieftains never had any mount options in the 7th ed book, not so sure it fits.
      - Thanks, will fix that.

    2. -Empire and Mercenary Wizards and (Arch)mages are a bit hamstringed by being limited to a single lore unlike everyone else. Maybe give them a special rule called "Magical Focus" where they automatically know the Signature spell(s) of the one lore they choose spells from. Or make that a rule that applies to everyone who only chooses from a single lore. Also, I think that Mercenary Wizards should be able to mix and match lores because there is no particular reason for an unaffiliated wizard to not do so.
      -The High/Dark Elves, Chaos Warriors and presumably one or two other army books are able to take Monsters that are on the lower-end in terms of cost as mounts for their heroes. I think that should apply to every army book.

    3. Lore-wise, its impossible for a mere human wizard, even the most powerful lords, to control and use more than one Wind. Such things have only been achieved by humans with the channelling of Dark Magic.

      Regarding the Skaven mount, Dwarfs have no mounts either, and neither have Night Goblins for that matter(except for the squighopper hero) and both those races live mostly underground, just like the Skaven do.
      So I think there is good reason to deny them mounts, certainly monstrous ones. And for centerpiece models, they are quite spoiled already I would say.

    4. That's blatantly untrue with the Bretonnian Damsels and Prophetesses, and also untrue throughout the other army books here.

      I have a few words for you, Oathstone and Great Cave Squig. All available to heroes from their respective army books. My point is that the mounts are existent in the Skaven but for some reason Chieftains do not have access to mounts.

    5. I have no idea what you mean with Damsels, Prophetesses or other wizards from other army books. They can choose between multiple lores but they can still only take ONE from whitch they must take all their spells. The same is true for practically all wizards in WH. Its one lore ORE another lore, etc. Perhaps you misread it.

      I know my WH lore quite well, and humans can only master one lore without using dark magic, plain and simple.

      As for the mounts, I dont consider Oathstone a mount, as for the Squig, sure, I suppose it counts although the concept is really just a super-squighopper. I cant recall ever seeing any skaven riding any other creature.

    6. You're right about the magic lores. Consider it retracted.

      Search "Skaven on Brood Horror", "Skaven on Pox Rat", "Skaven on Bonebreaker" and "Skaven on War Litter". All four are available to Warlords but not available to Chieftains for some reason. The only one that wouldn't fit would be the War Litter because no other Skaven heroes have access to it.

    7. Yea, you're right. I'm a little old school so havent really seen those figs, they are only from newer editions.

    8. In the fluff for Skaven mounts it specifically mentions Warlord though. The only mount I would see available to Chieftains is the greta pox rat, and I'm not sure sure that fits either.

    9. -Logically, Tuskgors attached to a chariot should be less common than a Tuskgor running free. Perhaps add a Core unit to the Beastmen army book that's basically a War Beast unit consisting of Tuskgors. In a way, they would be a different version of the Chaos Warhounds. While Chaos Warhounds would be used as chaff, flankers or War Machine/Fast Cavalry hunters, a Tuskgor unit is herded into battle and sent to break a hole in the enemy lines. I also think they should +1 strength on the turn they charge just like Razorgors.
      -I know that I mentioned it back when it would only be an aesthetic change but I still think horses should be toughness four (but not Elven or Arabian steeds). The warhorse models are more heavily built than the Elven steed models and I feel that would better differentiate them. By relation, that rule that makes Arabyan horses be slowed down more than normal by barding should be removed as well as Ithilmar Barding from the Silver Helms.

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  6. I'd like to see in the next upgrade some of the special characters missed in the past edition. One over all, Skarloc and his Rangers, that have been part of Wood Elves background since the Third Edition. Hope to see them at least in the Regiment of Renown section.

    1. They will be added in the full release of the book, don't worry :)

    2. Special character with unique unit.

    3. Special character with unique unit.

  7. I saw Mastro's post in the v1.02 blog post and here's some numbers from Wood Elf effective shooting:

    Because there's no limitations on magic arrows here's how it goes:

    Without re-roll 1s to hit /this can be a small compensation for ward saves) with 40 Glade Guards:

    With Arcane Bodkins: [AP(3)]
    On armour save 2+ T3 units it's 13,3 dead
    On armour save 1+ T3 units it's 10 dead

    With Trueflight Arrows: [AP(1)]
    On armour save 2+ T3 units it's 8,9 dead
    On armour save 1+ T3 units it's 4,4 dead

    Possible to do that damage for 2-3 turns.

    I'd remove the magic arrows from every other than Characters and maybe Waywatchers and bring back the "no -1 penalty to hit for moving and shooting" for the whole army.

    1. Or if the Trueflight Arrows don't sound too good then the Arcane Bodkins could be AP (2) and the enchanted arrows could be kept.

      Just some thoughts because those numbers could be bit high, at least with the arcane bodkins.

      I'm not going to say that Wood Elves should be in the level with High Elves. Wood Elves should be bit better like they're now.

    2. Yes, I think I will nerf the Arcane Bodkins to -2 save instead of -3, it's a bit much. Especially since I lowered their price to 3 pts.

      But, 40 Glade Guards with magic arrows costs 600 pts. That will give you 30 DoW heavy cavalry. So even if those 40 glade guard manages to kill ca. 20 of them, the remaining 10 knights will most likely crush them in CC in turn 2-3. And that's in ideal conditions for the Glade Guards, with open ground and the enemy within range for all models (since you cannot fire twice and move).

      Put a cheap skirmish screen in front of your elites (like you would in a historical battle) and those arrows will suddenly hurt a lot less.

  8. Yo Mathias, regarding the upcoming Lizardmen update, what'd you think about this unit?

    Saurus Impaler 14 points/model (Special Choice)
    Same basic stats like Saurus Warriors apart from BS3

    Equipment: Javelin, Spear, Tower Shield (basically a Pavaise, though maybe from all sides)
    Special Rules:
    Saurus Warrior Special rules + Precursive Strike: When charging a unit, the first two ranks of Saurus Impalers may perform a shooting attack just like in the shooting phase on the charged unit, even if technically not in range. Should the enemy flee as a cause of this shooting attack, treat it as if they had fled as their charged reaction.

    Also what's your take on Skink magic?

    1. Sounds like Roman Legionnaire tactic using pila? Interesting, but not so sure it fits the LM (since saurus have no BS and tower shields were not used by the aztecs).

      What would Skink magic be? They will already have one unique lore for the Slann, do they really need more?

    2. Kinda yeah, although I took inspiration from the Zulus, who then in turn were inspired by the Romans. I basically wanted to create a Saurus ranged unit, as well as an easy way to use more Saurus while keeping in form with the existing models, so Javelin throwers made the most sense.

      As for Skink magic I'm just asking whether or not we're sticking with what we got (Beasts and Heavens).

      I recall there being an option to gain access to other lores through Special Spawnings, was wondering if they were going to make a return.

    3. I'm thinking of adding in a few more lores for them, like Fire and Light, and maybe Life too.

      Spawnings will be added back too, but probably not until the full version.

  9. Maybe I am missing the obvious, but where is Bretonnia in your predicted ravening updates?

    1. Bretonnia already has a full army book, as do Skaven and Beastmen.

    2. Yes but none are fully compatible with 9th edition, which is the point of the ravening hordes lists. Although they should be last of the armies to get Ravening Hordes, they still need them to properly function in 9th.

    3. They will get 9th ed updates after all official 8th ed books have gotten their RH lists, since these are the most outdated.

  10. Meadow chariots have stats that say Cold One, just wanted to point that out. I feel rather excited about these changes :D Some pics for all of that would be cool though ;)

    1. Not sure if there even is artwork for Wood Elf chariot. For the mini you needed to use High Elf one or do one yourself or something along those lines.

    2. There might have been an artpiece on the 4th ed book, not sure. For models, you have both the classic GW one, or you could use Black Tree Design's model.

  11. About the beastmaster. I don't know if wolves also could be added? The main reason is that GW makes a very plastic wolves kit.:) I know I could use them as count as for the hounds, but maybe they can have their own unit?
    Also hounds have the fast attack special rule, but if a beastmaster takes 5 hounds the fast attack special rule is lost. Even if the beastmaster takes a elven steed. I think a beastmaster even on foot with a unit of hounds should be fast attack (Vanguard would be very nice than) and seems very fitting imo.
    What do you think?

    1. You might as well just use Wolf models though, since the stats and rules are exactly the same. No point in adding Wolves too.

      The Beastmaster uses the Monsters and Handlers special rule, which means you use the movement for the beasts, the handler (beastmaster) is ignored for this purpose.

    2. Aha, I need to check up on the rules than. :)

      I am very happy that you are doing this. It keeps my favorite sysem alive!

  12. For the Chariot you can use this artwork, even if it is a little old as it cames from the third edition[Box].jpg

  13. Could you add tree kins as a mount for we?

  14. What is the size of the base for the alter kin?

  15. If the Asrai Longbow grants Multiple Shots (2) by default, shouldn't the Hawk-eyed Archer special rule provide something greater?