Written by Grimbog Elf Ater.

Hello everyone!

What follows is a list of generic army compositions many Dark Elf players employ. This list is not meant to be exhaustive, but merely a starting place for new players.

I love playing with monsters!
Mosters and beasts theme

Heroes: Beastmasters on manticores, Highborns on Dragons.

Army: Dark Elves

Units to Consider: Hydras, Cold One Knights, Harpies, Corsairs (sea dragon cloaks).

Playing Basics: Corsiars do the bulk of your fighting while cold one knights and hydra's support. Beastmasters on manticores and harpies can be used to take out war machines and cause terror behind enemy lines.

I love my infantry blocks, but I love my elite infantry blocks even better!
Infantry based

Heroes: Druchii Anointed, Noble, Assassin, Highborn, Aspiring Champion of Chaos.

Army: Dark Elves, Cult of Slaanesh, City Garrison.

Units to Consider: Corsairs, Witch Elves, Executioners, Black Guards, Devotees of Slaanesh, Chaos Warriors.

Playing Basics: With such a tantalising array of infantry models available to you it's tempting to just line up combats against enemy units and charge. Try to avoid this and support your units with other smaller units of infantry for flank charges.

I'm a bit of a speed freak really... I want the battle over fast!
Quick, mobile and hard hitting force

Heroes: Nobles, sorceresses and beastmasters mounted on cold ones, dark pegasi and manticores, lords on dragons.

Army: Dark Elf, Cult of Slaanesh, Watchtower Army List.

Units to consider: Dark Riders, Cold One Knights, Harpies, Shades (to block enemy marching and maximise your movement) and Chaos Knights.

Playing Basics: Be selective with your combat and manouvre into position so that you can charge 2 units at a time into the enemy unit (preferrable one to the front and one to the flank. Try to take apart one enemy unit at a time unit the whole army is defeated in ths manner.

Let me shoot at stuff!
Shooty list

Heroes: Heroes with Life-Taker item, sorceresses complement shooty armies well.

Army: City Garrison, Dark Elf, Raider Army List.

Units to consider: Repeater crossbow warriors, shades, harpies, reaper bolt throwers, dark riders with repeater crossbows.

Playing Basics: Nothing much to this variant other than shoot! Your shades and harpies should be used to march block the opponent to maximise the amount of turns that you spend shooting and magicking the opposing units as they come forward to meet you.

I need an army... cheap!
For those on a budget!

Heroes: Unfortunately all hero models are sold individually, although another way out of it is to make one from the base warrior sprues or use elite unit command models (eg. Executioner / Black Guard champions) as commander on foot. Sorceress is a good cheap option too.

Army: Dark Elf, City Garrison.

Units to consider: The cheapest way to do it build up the army is with regiment warrior boxes for your core spears and repeater crossbow warriors. From there, add a reaper and you already have a versatile force to use in battle.

Playing Basics: Warriors with spears bear the brunt of close combat while your repeater crossbows and reapers fire at the enemy to soften them up and reduce their numbers before they get to melee combat. Equipping the repeater crossbows with shields as well means that they can provide a surviveable small flanking unit as well, so keep them close to your spearmen at all times.

I am a master slaver and terror of the coasts of the Old World!
Raiding force / piratical theme

Heroes: Nobles or highborns, sea dragon cloaks makes them look like they've just stepped off a black ark.

Army: Dark Elf, Raiders Army List.

Units to consider: Corsairs (lots!), dark riders, shades, harpies and reaper bolt throwers.

Playing Basics: Again, harpies and shades march block, reaper takes out enemy war machines and softens up infantry on their way across the field and your corsair sit back and wait for the enemy charges, dark riders waiting in the wings to provide fast moving flanking support.

I am a cultist of the Dark Prince and will bring the elves to serve
Fast and Hard hitting with taint of Chaos

Heroes: Sorceress, Aspring Champion of Chaos, Noble, High Sorceress and Duchii Atointed, in larger games Keeper of Secrets.

Army: Cult of Slaanesh

Units to consider: Devotees of Slaanesh (must 1+), Shades, Mounted Daemonettes, Chaos Warriors, Knights of Chaos... Mark of Slaanesh is your friend.

Playing Basics: Go magic heavy since you can use both Dark Magic and Lore of Slaanesh and go in CC with your Mounted daemonettes fast! Use Shades to pick of warmachine crews. Your Chaos Knights and Warriors should be able to finnish of most opponents when they come in CC, just make sure to block enemy LOS with either Daemonettes, Marauders or DE Warriors. For other rare slots RBTs provides good shooting support to take out enemy shooting. Chaos Spawn for a extra hard hitting and unbreakable unit, but I prefer COKs or Dark riders if you have special choices left.

* Note - Cult of Slaanesh list can be found in the Storm of Chaos army book. Link is here:

Storm of Chaos Global Web Site - The Book

* Watchtower, City Garrison and Raider lists appear in Warhammer Fantasy Chronicles, White Dwarf and online at the GW website.

Thank-you to zhaf for his assistance with making the selector a better one.

Any other categories need to be added? :hmm: