Why Play Wood Elves
Do you want to play elves and be on the Good Guys team but high elves are too over-powered? Do you want to play an elf army with lots of toughness? Do you want to play an army that makes your enemy fear scenery and never take trees on the battle field again? Do you want to play an army that can be all fast cavalry? Guess what: Wood Elves are for you.
Wood elves are AWESOME think of an army of Legolases from LoTR.
On the downside, Wood Elves are one of, if not the only army in Warhammer Fantasy that lacks any sort of War Machines to root down their lines and hold them in a single spot and are hard to use.
Although their slowest units have movement 5, and most move much much faster. The name of their game is speed and maneuverability. By the end of turn 2 you can be behind the enemy lines, ready to unleash deadly co-ordinated flank charges, and against slower armies you can quite simply run circles around your enemies.
Though regarded as some of the best archers in the game, due to their strength 4 short range shots, the wood elves' greatest strength is not in their shooting. They are formidable in combat but lack staying power. You will need to use your maneuverability to ensure that you win the first combat resolution. If the elves get bogged down, their low toughness means they will be hacked to pieces.
Although against slow armies and 2000 points and under the enemy might struggle to get in combat with you so if you can dodge or take out their shooting and magic then an easy win for you. A beefed up unit of 40 glade guard with magical banner to shoot charging enemy with move and shoot normally means 80 str 4 arrows hit a unit before he charges you. How many troops were charging again? That is assuming he can get that close. With a treeman blocking the path to your archers quite a strong base to an army.
Lastly, their magic is not the most powerful, but they are elves so it is still quite useful, but with forest spirits and units such as treekin bolstering their lines, regenerative life or athel loren magic can give some monsters heavy staying power to tie up more valuable and deadly enemy units, leaving the majority of the army free to maneuver at will and pick off the weaker enemy units.
The Wood Elves require perhaps the most skill and nuance to play well, but this directly translates into them also being one of the most rewarding armies to play.
Plus they're bad ass vengeful guardians of the forest, so that's pretty cool too.
 Unit Analysis
 Lords & Heroes
 Named Characters
Note: Under the current edition, named characters tend to be overpriced; you can pretty easily emulate most named characters from scratch and save yourself some points. That said, a few named characters do have abilities and wargear or wargear combos unique to them, so if you absolutely need to have them, go ahead. Just make sure you're really getting your points worth.
- Orion, The King of the Woods: Orion is what we, in the biz, refer to as a Deathstar Unit: Incredibly expensive, requires a massive tax on your resources, can be incredibly powerful, has a laughably easy weak point for all that it took to bring him in. Orion costs 575 points, not including his hounds and screws around with your forces. He can also beat in almost anyone's face (WS8, S5, A6, I9, +2 S on the charge), comes with an Bolt Thrower and an extra pair of Dispel Dice and is Unbreakable and Unstable (with 1 less wound if you're within 6 inches of a Wood. Here's the downside: He's only T5 with a 5+ Mundane Ward, making him significantly less durable than a Treeman (who is T6 with a 3+ Armor and 5+ Mundane Ward). He will drop like a fly to high volume S4 and above attacks and god help you if it's Magical Attacks. He also has a troubling lack of Always Strikes First and will have trouble winning combats against large units (he'll probably tie or grab a minor win on round 1 and then start losing from then on). He'll also rarely see enough action to justify his incredible points cost. Don't bother.
- Drycha: Orion is fighty, the Twins are shooty, Drycha is weird. She's cheap, at 355 points, but she doesn't come with nearly enough stuff to justify even this low entry point. For starters, she's only a Level 2 caster (most Lords get laughed out of the room if they're not at least level 3) and only has access to Lore of Athel Loren. She also fucks your unit options right up (if you're not a Forest Spirit, GTFO) and while she's reasonably fighty, T4, 3 wounds and only a 5+ Mundane Ward means she's easy to drop. And while her kinda ganky Deep Strike ability seems fun, you're only guaranteed 1 Wood (IE the one you brought, sitting in your deployment zone) it's probably easier to just have them join her from the front. Don't bother.
- Naestra and Arahan, The Sisters of Twilight: Anyone who makes a 'Twins are hot' joke gets kicked out of Athel Loren. As for the girls, they can be hilarious. You don't take them to win, you take them to troll. They cost upwards of 500 points when you take them with the Dragon (
never, EVER take them with the Eagle take them, only with the eagle! Now is immortal!), but one Sister comes with a bow that hits with a Small Blast and the other comes with a bow that causes the hit unit to have to take a Strength test or not move the next turn. Oh and a minor thing? If either of them are alive at the end of any given PHASE (IE Movement, Magic, Shooting, Combat) then both of them get restored to full wounds. IE you have to kill them both in one phase, or they're both fine. This can get hilarious very quickly. That said, they're not exactly competitive; They're expensive and at T3 and 2 wounds, they die very easily. But if you can pull it off, bouncing them both on and off their feet is a great way to troll. And what're you gonna do, you're playing Wood Elves, not like you're in this to win to begin with.
 Generic Characters
Note: While named characters are judged against their generic counterparts, generic characters are examined based on their role in your army.
- Highborn: Generic combat lord, reasonably fighty but you'll pale in comparison to most other Lords. He does however make Eternal Guard core and can be kitted out in a variety of ways to be more fighty. Plus an LD10 bubble is always a good thing. Should not be your first Lord choice, but far from a bad one.
- Spellweaver: This should be your first Lord choice. Level 4 at 250 points, a variety of magic items to make her better, and most importantly, access to Lore of Life and Lore of Beasts (both of which knock Lore of Athel Loren right the fuck out of the park). Plus she has a Longbow, which means that while she's hanging in the back with your Glade Guard, she can ping off the odd casualty herself, which is hilarious by the by. If you want a Lord choice, this is the one you should go for in almost every situation.
- Treeman Ancient: While Treemen are easily one of the best choices available, Treemen Ancients fail for a variety of reasons. First off, they're 40 points more, and all you're getting for that is 1 point of LD and the ability to use 2 Tree Singing a turn (woo fucking hoo), plus the ability to buy Sprites and spend more points on them. Plus, Treemen are in the barely used Rare points, whereas Ancients are in the highly contested Lord choices. Don't bother with Ancients. Unless you want to put the annoyance of netlings on him. If you do this then he can stand toe to toe with any lord in the game.
- Noble: Blah blah blah generic combat hero blah. Blah blah blah want a Battle Standard Bearer blah. In all seriousness, the highly mobile and fluid nature of a Wood Elf army, means that you're gonna get less mileage out of a BSB than most armies, but they're still an effective use of points. Also, having one sitting in your Eternal Guard makes them Stubborn, which is always worth it's weight. And finally, if you have a lot (and I mean a lot) of points left on the table and you're worried about War Machines/Small Shooting Units, there is an amusing way to use Nobles: Load them up with Alter Kindred, Helm of the Hunt, Shield and Sword of Might. The resulting Noble will be the most effective War Machine/Small Unit hunter you will ever see (and because he'll be on foot, he'll have a 360 degree arc of sight). Not precisely competitive, but fun.
- Spellsinger: The Spellsinger has one major issue that separates her from a Spellweaver: She only has access to Lore of Athel Loren. While this isn't the worst Lore in the world, it does limit her usefulness. If you need a cheap caster, then this is probably the way you wanna go, but unless you have a specific use for the Lore of Athel Loren, it's probably not worth it.
- Branchwraith: The Branchwraith has 2 advantages: 1, she's fairly effective (WS6, S4, T4, I8, A3, 5+ Mundane Ward). 2, she's cheap. She's not gonna break 120 points unless you make her a Wizard (which you should never do, Level 1 might as well not exist). She's a cheap way of beefing up a Dryad unit, so if you're taking one you should probably stick it in a Dryad unit that's gonna end up somewhere important.
- Elven Steed: You know it, you love it. If you're taking a Noble/Highborn who wants to run with the Wild Riders... well he's gonna need a Kindred, but this should be his first choice. Remember, you're Wood Elves, so fuck all those Dangerous Terrain tests taken from Woods.
- Great Stag: Really, why aren't you taking it? Better stats than it's closest cousin (IE the Eagle), you can still join units, you get a Ward Save. One of the better mounts.
- Great Eagle: Eh. Could be worth a lark if you want a Noble to go hunting, but it's fairly likely to get shot out from under him. Never mind that if you want your Noble to go hunting on his own, Alter Kindred is much more effective. Not worth it.
- Unicorn: Unicorns are weird. They seem to be designed to deliver a Hero/Lord directly into combat, but it's only available to Casters and all it really does for them is make them a tiny bit more durable. I suppose it could protect your Tree Spirit units from casting by giving them all Magic Resistance (2) but that's just a really roundabout way of doing that. Probably not worth it.
- Forest Dragon: It's a Dragon, what do you want? It's perhaps a bit on the expensive side and it's much more difficult to kit out a Wood Elf Lord for Bear than either of the other Elves, but it's still a Dragon. Taken in big games (3k+) it'll probably justify its points.
 Core Units
- Glade Guard: Glade Guard are fairly overpriced for their ability, but they're one of the mainstay units of your army. Since your free Wood has to go in your deployment zone (yeah it does, read the FAQ), they can hang in there. You can probably rule the shooting phase against a good portion of opponents with a bunch of 10 man units, with maybe a 20 man unit with the Banner of Eternal Flame to deal with Regenerating units. You need Glade Guard.
- Scouts: Just what Glade Guard need, to cost more (up at 17 points) and do less. The only thing this accomplishes for you is getting them close to the enemy and giving them Skirmisher status. This could be alright, if they didn't lose S4 shooting at close range with it. Do not bother with Scouts.
- Glade Riders: Ugh. Overpriced (24 points) and unreliable are the key words for this unit. A unit of 5 with a Musician will run you nearly 130 points and those points are almost certainly better spent elsewhere, especially if you don't need them to fill out your Core requirements (as the only jobs they do are done better in the Special choices). You should probably avoid these.
- Dryads: Dryads are cheap and effective combat troops that are let down by the new limitations put on Skirmishers in 8th edition. The inability to break ranks really hurts. But they make effective small unit hunters, they're highly mobile and can be pretty brutal in close combat. You're gonna wanna multiple minimum sized units, to help rule the movement phase. Just be careful, 1 Magic Missile can end the entire party.
- Eternal Guard: The anchor around which the rest of your army moves. They're reasonably fighty (3 ranks of 5 have 20 attacks, which is always welcome, plus WS5 and I5) and if you've taken a Highborn they're pretty much a requirement. Go with the Razor Standard like cheese and crackers. Best of all, if you can drop a Noble or Highborn in them, they become Stubborn, which can make them impossible to move. Beware, they will suffer against high Toughness or Armor Save targets, so best to let your Tree Spirits deal with them. A good choice, whether Core or Special.
 Special Units
- Wardancer Troupe: Wardancers are a reasonably good unit let down by a few flaws and a fairly high cost of entry. They cost 18 points a pop and with T3 and a 6+ Ward, they're about as hard as tissue paper, but that's par for the course with Wood Elves and Skirmishers in general. What lets these guys down is the fact that because they're not Scouts, they have to start in your deployment zone, and M5 does not let them cross the board very quickly. Don't get me wrong, if they hit they can cause some serious damage, but you could very easily have a 200 points plus unit do precisely zip. So while they're not bad, they're easily the least reliable of the 3 Special Choices.
- Warhawk Riders: You think your Fast Cavalry is fast? Bitch please. These guys are troubleshooters, as they can bring down War Machines like they're not there, punch out shooting units, ping wounds off lightly armored units and even help out in large combats (this is only for emergencies though). Remember, Flying Cavalry is Fast Cavalry and Fast Cavalry can fire on the march and you don't get negatives for moving and shooting. Their Hit-And-Run ability is funny but only useful when they're combining charges with someone and things have gone tits up (and that's really not their job). Also, don't forget, you're Monstrous Cavalry and thus get Stomp.
3 of them are 120 point with 6 wound, 6 attack (3 the rider and 3 the hawk) +3 stomp or 3 bow, but only if you survive the fight, and have a base too large to contact with all of them on an enemy unit flank, with only a 6+ Armour. So, 120 point to 3 bow while the glade rider for the same point have 5 bow? Glade Riders are slower, more vulnerable to shooting (Skirmisher=-1 to hit), don't hit as hard, don't have as many wounds and can't skip over enemy units to attack War Machines and the like. Yes, they have fewer Longbow shots, but that doesn't really matter, shooting things isn't this unit's job, it's just a 'Might as well, since there's no downside,' option.
- Wild Riders of Kurnous: These are one of the guys who make Wardancers look bad. They're more durable (6+ Ward, 5+ Mundane Ward, 5+ Armor), move faster and can generally accomplish more. They also have a pretty damned solid statline (WS5, S4, I5, LD9) and a few amusing special rules. Even with the massive hit that Cavalry took in 8th edition, there are few Wood Elf armies that don't have room for Wild Riders.
- Treekin: Treekin are the younger brother of Treemen and should only be avoided if you have some crippling fear of winning. No I'm not kidding, these are easily one of your most reliable units. S5, T5, 3 wounds, 3 attacks, Stomp, 4+ armor, 5+ Mundane Ward. If they were Stubborn, they'd be broken. Beware they are vulnerable to Great Weapons and high volumes of S4 attacks and have trouble overcoming large amounts of static combat res, so be careful to not send them into battles they can't win.
 Rare Units
- Waywatchers: I'm of two minds about Waywatchers. On the one hand they have killer BS, Killing Blow at short range and the ability to get reallllllly close to the enemy. On the other hand they are FUCKING expensive (24 points a pop) and extremely fragile. They can be competent War Machine hunters and if you can get enough of them together they can be one of your only ways to deal with Heavy Cavalry without getting a Treeman involved. If you need some help with heavy armor or war machines, then they can be worth the investment but otherwise, skip 'em.
- An Alternate Opinion: Look at in reverse every enemy hates them they can turn up practically anywhere at the start of the game and be a big pain in the ass. For example your opponent has a fanatic type unit ooops they are all released before turn 1 did that really happen? The enemy either ignores them completely leaving you to ruin his battle line with them or stop his war machines from firing. Or the enemy has to setup his entire army based on you having way watchers. So 150ish points mean your enemy deployment has been ruined and you have a chance to snipe enemy characters, cavalry and warmachines a no brainer after the treeman in my army. Remember a battle can be won in the deployment phase and if you have a fast army yes you do you have wood elves then they could have just won you the battle before a blow is struck. I advise you to use them to max out your rare points but you have to be a good general for them to have the most effectiveness and they are mostly a sacrifice unit.
- Treeman: The only time you should skip the Treeman is if you are playing someone who's lost a lot lately and needs a win as a pick-me-up. And they're playing Beastmen. Seriously, this is easily one of the most important units in your army. WS5, S6, T6, W6, A5, Stubborn, 3+ armor, 5+ mundane ward, Strangleroot, Thunderstomp, Tree Singing (and remember, the direct damage version of Tree Singing has no maximum range or line of sight requirements). Yeah, we know it's Flammable, but given how difficult it is to damage, that's not gonna matter as much as you think, because remember that those double wounds only apply AFTER you get through its armour, which it has shit tons of. Unless you're in 1000 points and under and therefore literally cannot legally take a Treeman, this should be one of your first choices.
- Great Eagle: Can function as cheap chaff in certain army builds, but will wind up completely useless in other builds. Waywatchers are more reliable thorns in the enemy's side, Treemen are more durable and more destructive, but Eagles are cheaper and move faster, so call that comparison a wash. If you're not taking Warhawk Riders, than a Great Eagle or two wouldn't go amiss, especially if you've got points left over, but not the first choice you should take unless you've got a very specific use for it.
 Building Your Army
 Buying Your Army
The battalion set is good value. You can get a fairly decent army out of it.
From the Glade Guard sprues, you can build Waywatchers. If you have some spare High Elf or Dark Elf spearmen/warriors, giving them a Glade Guard head can turn them into Eternal Guard. You get a ton of heads with the Glade Guard, so you're spoilt!
The Glade Riders you can build as Wild Riders with the spears.
For your Lords/Heroes choices, you can build them out of the sprues provided. You can make a mounted Highborn and, with a bit of imagination, a Spellweaver.
 Army Composition
 Magic Items
- A Blight of Terrors: 50 points to cause Terror? Yeah, no.
- A Befuddlement of Mischiefs: Hm. The new rules on Bound Spells kinda hurt it, but if you're tailoring lists and you know you're fighting someone like Bretonnia or Beastmen...yeah it's okay. Keep it out of take on all comers lists though.
- A Murder of Spites: Can be very useful, especially on a Lord/Hero you expect to be a frontline fighter. Recommended.
- A Muster of Malevolents: Could be alright on a Wizard, but not usually worth it's points.
- An Annoyance of Netlings: Wanna make that opponent who's kitted out for bear cry in close combat? Take this Spite. Very good for a Lord you want to go character hunting.
- A Resplendence of Luminescents: The key here is that it applies to the unit s/he joins, making it killer for a Wizard hanging out with Glade Guard. No one will ever take Ethereal creatures against you again (of course, why they would given that half your army already has magical attacks, is beyond us, but hey).
- A Lamentation of Despairs: Not... terrible, and it could be hilarious that one time it works and knocks out your enemies general on turn 1. But pretty limited. Not a first choice, but if you're in the mood, go for it.
- A Cluster of Radiants: This. This, this, this, this. 25 points for a Dispel Dice is worth it in almost any situation. This is half the reason you take a Branchwraith right here.
- A Pageant of Shrikes: Wanna go Wizard hunting, but that Damsel is hiding in a unit? Take this item. A fantastic way to deal with enemies hiding inside units.
- The Spirit Sword: Hm. The auto-wounding thing is nice as is the secondary ability, in theory, but while it's wielded by an LD10 Lord, a lot of the people he'll end up using it against will be LD10, which makes it a risky proposition. And Wood Elves aren't good enough to really afford chance. Probably not worth it.
- Daith's Reaper: Wood Elves have a limited number of ways to kit out their guys for bear and this is one of the best. Yeah it doesn't help you get those wounding rolls, but it's an overall extremely useful item for it's price. Recommended.
- The Bow of Loren: You're probably going to want to end up combining this with magical arrows of some kind, which means you'll have to devote a Lord to it. But if you can afford to (with say, Arcane Bodkins?) then you'd be surprised how effective 4 shots a turn can be. Especially if they ignore armor.
- Blades of Loec: Yeah it's alright. If you've got a Hero kitted out to be a Wardancer, these are a good choice.
- The Dawnspear: This is also an excellent choice, especially on a Lord, where his high Initiative will allow him to whack most enemy units before they can strike. A good choice.
- The Spear of Twilight: A bit too expensive, but not too bad as far as Wood Elf weapons go.
- The Callach's Claw: Hm. Not bad. Could be a good way of boning over Steadfast units. Use it wisely though, it doesn't help you wound.
- The Hunter's Talon: Another good way of boning over Wizards in units. Combine with A Pageant of Shrikes and Scout Kindred to kill a Hero level Wizard turn 1.
- The Sword of a Thousand Winters: These items are always fairly useless and since this one specifies that it doesn't work on Monstrous Infantry, it's pretty much worthless.
- Rageth's Wildfire Blades: There are probably easier ways to get this, but if you need flaming attacks, this is an easy way to get it.
- Asyendi's Bane: Why would you do this? A reroll is certainly worth the possibility of damaging your hero.
Do not bother, under any circumstances. Noble BSB lose the bow, but you want a noble with the Hail of doom Arrow and doesn't have so many point for the hero' slot? Equip a Noble BSB with this bow, so he can shot the Hail of doom Arrow! And you can shot normally the for rest of the battle, until some FAQ or a new army book fix the Noble BSB like the other BSB!
- The Oaken Armor: If you want to protect a Highborn, this is the way to do it. One of the better choices in magic armor in the Wood Elf book.
- Railarian's Mantle: As always, you're only guaranteed 1 wood, and given that it costs the same as Oaken Armor, or 5 points more than the Armor of Silvered Steel, it's probably not worth it.
- Armor of the Fey: Mildly lulzy if you combine it with a hero who has the Forest Spirit special rule, but squarely non-competitive.
- Helm of the Hunt: Unless your lord/hero is completely designed for defense, or not allowed to take armor, there is no character who won't benefit from this. Awesome when taken with Alter Kindred.
- Briarsheath: Your Heroes/Lords are not usually designed to be running touchdowns on their own, outside of Alter Kindred, and while this will make you pretty much immune to BS based shooting, it won't protect you from having your skull being beaten in close combat. Don't bother.
- The Rhymer's Harp: Having issues with your Eternal Guard or Glade Guard dying too easy? See how easily they die when you're grabbing them a 5+ Ward Save. The other ability is just gravy. And you still have enough points to grab a solid Arcane Item/Weapon (depending on whether it's on a Highborn or a Spellsinger). A FANTASTIC item.
- Amaranthine Brooch: It's... alright I guess. Kinda on the expensive side, and there are more reliable ways of getting a 3+ ward in the Wood Elf book, but that gets eaten up pretty fast. Mediocre, but an okay second choice.
- Amber Pendant: Fun for trolling High Elves, but Wood Elf initiative is good enough across the board that you're not gonna get a great lot of use out of this. If you're tailoring your list, go ahead. If not, skip it.
- Stone of the Crystal Mere: One of the best ways to protect a caster in the Wood Elf book, and pretty damned excellent on combat heroes too. Just plain a damned good item.
- Stone of Rebirth: The FAQ officially says that this works against more than one wound which means it could be useful on a Life Spellsinger who is counting on the Lore of Life attribute to give her her wounds back. Not exceptionally useful otherwise.
- The Fimbulwinter Shard: Stupid name aside, unless you're running reallllly Forest Spirit heavy, you'll probably get some mileage out of this. Even if you are running a solid number of Forest Spirits, it's range isn't so much you need to worry about it.
- Merciw's Locus: Amusing, but it still allows non-Strength bonus abilities, so it's a little limited. You can probably find a better use for those 20 points.
- Wraithstone: It's range is absurdly limited, and there will be many times when you take it against VC or TK and have it do nothing, but it's a GREAT way to bone over Steadfast/Stubborn unit. Highly recommended.
- Hagbane Arrows: If you know you're fighting against Ogre Kingdoms... this is still probably not worth it, since it'll only kill a model 1/3rd of the time. Too limited to really be generally useful.
- Moonstone of the Hidden Ways: The current terrain rules kinda fuck this item over, but it might be worth it for that one time you pull a sick move with your Eternal Guard. Still, probably not worth the points.
- Hail of Doom Arrow: The issue with this item isn't so much that it can't make up it's points, but more that you have to devote an entire hero to using it. Still, it can lead to you devastating a unit on Turn 1, which is always awesome. If you have a free Hero, or 30 points free on your Lord, it could be kinda fun.
- The Horn of the Asrai: Um...what now? You're paying points to get your enemy to charge you? That seems... counter intuitive (especially since drawing people out of position by having them charge is a Warhawk unit's job). Don't bother.
- Arcane Bodkins: I am 99 percent certain these arrows were made to keep Bretonnia from getting uppity. Combine with The Bow of Loren for a killer shooting Lord. Not a bad item at all.
- Elynett's Brooch: Since you can't use it to help with Break tests (I think, it's kinda unclear) it's usefulness is limited at best.
- Dragontooth Arrows: The only time you're going to get any use out of this is against Ogre Kingdoms. If you're tailoring you list, could be okay. Otherwise, ignore it.
- Gwytherc's Horn: This seems to be tailored to be given to a unit champion, and since there's no unit champion who can take items you can safely ignore it, especially given that a lot of your units are already Immune to Psychology.
- Wand of the Wych Elm: A great item for defensive wizards. Oh I rolled double 1s for my dispel attempt. Reroll and oh, there it is, dispelled. Sorry, maybe next time. Should be your first choice for a Lord Level Wizard.
- Calaingor's Staff: Its cheap. Not really worth it, as Tree Singing isn't THAT important.
LOL. Nice joke the one thing all enemies fear about Wood Elves is Tree Singing it is the single most deadly spell in their lore and with this staff you can cast it a lot. If you break the enemies wizards then it is great for a level 2 wizard for taking out big units as they are just about to get into combat. I remember one 30 man unit getting in range to charge my archers in turn 5 nothing I could do to avoid the charge and in my magic phase tree singing killed 15 of his guys at toughness 4 and 4+ armour saves ooops. Needless to say after that he could not charge with that unit as the archers would have killed the rest. If you are taking lore of Athel on a level two and cannot therefore cannot get Wand of Wych Elm then this is a must. We apologize for that, as the writer briefly forgot what a good portion of this tactica is devoted to teaching you: You are only guaranteed 1 Wood. Therefore, Calaingor's Staff could very well end up doing nothing, therefore it is not that important.
- Divination Orb: Not... great, but an okay choice for a Hero Level Wizard, especially since he doesn't need to be the one to dispel it.
- The Deepwood Sphere: See: Calaingor's Staff. Seriously, too many of these items are based around Tree Singing. This item is all about the automatic strength 5 hits to everyone in the woods with the caster.
- Ranu's Heartstone: Pretty good, but you can probably get better items.
- The Royal Standard of Ariel: Eh. Not...terrible, but it's expensive at 100 points and kind of limited in it's usefulness. The highly mobile nature of a Wood Elf army means you're probably not gonna get too much use out of it. You can do better stuff with 100 points. In the new rules this sucks don't bother with it ever.
- Gaemrath- the Banner of Midwinter: Could be alright on a unit of Eternal Guard, provided another unit has the Razor Standard. It's okay, but it has to be used carefully.
- Faoghir- the Banner of Dwindling: Not bad on some Wild Riders. Don't bother on any other units though.
- Saemrath- the Banner of the Zenith: This one is actually really good for it's points. Unfortunately, none of the units that could put it to use (Waywatchers, Warhawk Riders) have access to magic banners. The only unit that could use it that can take a banner is a unit of Scouts and that's kind of a silly thing to take just to get access to a Magic Banner. Skip it.
- Aech- the Banner of Springtide: If you've taken a Banner on a unit of Glade Guard then go ahead and stick this magic banner on them especially if it is a big unit. Otherwise, skip it.
- Kindreds: Kindreds are kinda weird. Essentially you're paying a few points to get a few special rules. That's kinda fun, but it does usually limit your access to magic items, although it can allow for some specialized heroes and does not take away from your magic items points cost so you can make your heroes more bad ass but sacrifice get no magical armour or weapons.
- Wardancer Kindred: If you want to add some Oomph to your Wardancer unit, you can make drop this on a Hero, but that usually only becomes an option at larger points. If you do take this, be sure to grab the Blades of Loec.
- Eternal Kindred: Worthless. You can get better results tossing magic items on your guy and since your BSB can't take Kindreds, this removes the option of grabbing it with a BSB and Magic Banner. Never take this.
Really, i used to think that too but now i always take it on my Lord with a great weapon in any battle over 2k points I can have a lord and Spellweaver. It gives your character a better save then light armour and an extra attack for hardly any points if your not worried about striking last take a great weapon and still get the extra attack at str 6 and 5 attacks that makes a good lord for hardly any extra points and he can be in a unit unlike Alter. And you still have 100 points in magic items or kindreds to use. Read the FAQ, Eternal Kindred takes precedence over any other mundane equipment (Specifically stating that you cannot get the +2 Strength from a Great Weapon and that no armor will boost him above a 5+ armor) and that if you take magic weapons/armor, you lose Eternal Guard fighting style. So again. Never take this.
- Alter Kindred: Give it to a hero. Combine with Helm of the Hunt and a Magic Weapon (plus Light Armor and Shield of course) to make an extremely effective war machine/small unit hunter that's hard to shoot (-1 to hit for Single Character, plus a rare, for Wood Elves 4+ armor save). If they shoot at him, they've spent a lot of shooting trying to drop one guy, leaving the rest of your army mostly unharmed. If they don't he can go tear up shooting units and war machines, so you'll probably win either way. Only take one though.
- Scout Kindred: Eh. It might make a hero an okay War Machine hunter but...Alter Kindred. Could be fun if you want to take a unit of Scouts and Saemrath, but then you're putting a lot of points into one not-very-good basket. Except in that (very specific) circumstance, don't bother.
- Wild Rider Kindred: If you want your Hero/Lord to ride with your Wild Riders (which is not a bad choice), gotta grab one of these. Otherwise, ignore it.
- Waywatcher Kindred: Fairly worthless. The restrictions it makes to weapons and armor mean your hero/lord is likely to get killed cuz of it. Ignore.
- Glamourweave Kindred: Weird. Combined with a Unicorn, it could be a useful way to get your Dryads/Treekin Spell Protection, but that's a really specific use. If you're not using it for that, don't bother.
Wood Elf Magic is hampered by the fact that all but 1 of their casters can only use the Lore of Athel Loren. As such, you should focus most of your magic into Spellweavers, giving you access to the Lore of Beasts and Lore of Life. However, both of these Lores are designed heavily for defensive and support, so don't expect to be wiping out units with them. Use them wisely however and they can win you combats you'd otherwise lose, which is really important in such a tactically difficult army.
Lore of Athel Loren however should only ever be used by Spellsingers (never make your Branchwraiths Casters, it's not worth the points), and while it has it's okay spells, you're not guaranteed to get any of them. Tree Singing is a guarantee if you took a Treeman (which you did) so that's alright, especially since the direct damage has no Max range. Apart from that, Ariel's Blessing and The Call of the Hunt are okay, but not great and Fury of the Forest can be an alright direct damage spell. Hidden path is great against a shooty army look that unit of Dyrads moving towards your shooting units cannot be shot at and block all other shooting so you basically cannot use your archers and the dyrads are going to destroy them in combat oooops sorry about that. The other spell is worthless so don't bother with that.
There are only two things the enemy hates about Wood Elves' magic:
- 1. Tree Singing: moving trees stops charging and does a lot of damage to units if not dispelled and it has a very low casting value.
- 2. Staff of Wynch: reroll all dispel attempts, damn those wood elves can dispel anything were they match my dice. Especially as the wizard using this is level 3 or 4.
 Life Magic
This Lore is really good for Wood Elves as you can restore wounds on your best units (ie: Treemen and Treekin) every time you cast a spell and using Regrowth you can add up to 7 wounds back onto a unit. Everyone hates and fears Dwellers Below and Earth Blood gives a decent ward save as the signature spell. Fleshstone is elves' best friend, and will help your Glade Guard if things go not as planned. Shield of Thorns is useful for Waywatchers charging into combat. Throne of Vines is cheese, as it boosts all your spells and guarantees a 2+ save against mistcasts. Last spell is a worse version of Tree Singing, swap it for Earth Blood.
Build your tactics around your army.
Basically Wood Elves need to ambush pick their fights carefully and throw multiple units into every combat they fight if they want to win. One unit on its own is not going anywhere unless it's Treekin in numbers or it's charging on flanks or rear.
I cannot see any successful Wood Elves army without:
- 1. A Treeman;
- 2. A Spellweaver.
Here some options you could use:
- A) Shooty army.
- Either you are going to run circles around your enemy and shoot his soldiers to bits like horse-archer tactics with one big unit of archers moving protected by a Treeman and some other disruption or holding units. Focus on the units trying yo get to your archers, then, when your shooters are safe, move your defenders.
- B) Fast combat army.
- You could take an entire horse army. Very hard to use and limited options. Never tried, but it's a specialist army. It would be hard to beat block infantry armies though.
- C) Infantry army.
- Units of 5 or 6 Treekin have high Strength and Toughness, multiple wounds, good weapons skill and nearly 20 attacks per turn. Spearmen unit is expensive but good for holding characters and with a Noble/Highborn is stubborn. The enemy will need to kill everyone, so they are not going anywhere for some turns.
A level 2 wizard with Tree Singing is the only reason no one uses trees in scenery anymore. Combine this with any army above.
 A Friendly Reminder
You are only guaranteed 1 wood which is in your deployment zone, the rest is up to the fickle terrain table. Planning strategies around having woods hanging around is a good way to lose!
Thank you for listening.