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I came to thinking that despite ASF buff, High Elves took such a downgrade in 8th because of their survivability issue that I hardly see how I could make it with them. Or do I ?
I've spent some time browsing WE books and made up some lists (which are basically loads of Glade Guards), and on paper, it looks good enough to be worth a try. But than, I figured HE could do the same, but... better.
What Glade Guards have that we don't : no moving/shooting penalties, str 4 at close range.
What we have that they don't : ASF (10 archers VS what's left of another infantry unit just got a good chance of winning), and a much more powerful magic phase, which can include the Lore of Shadows withering spell.
The basics of my thoughts :
Archmage lvl 4, lore of High Magic, power jewel, whatever else suits you.
Mage lvl 2, Saphery, lore of shadows.
Mage lvl 1 High Magic (there to make sure my lvl 4 gets the spells he needs, so this one takes #1 or 3 if rolled, channeling), annulian.
4-5 units of archers, one bigger with the banner of eternal flames.
A unit of Phoenix, banner of sorcery.
The magic phase should look like this : Curse of arrow attraction (2 dices), The whitering (4 dices), Flames of the phoenix (3 dices), Fury of Khaine * compulsory (1-2 dices).
That's a 9 dices phase, with banner, power jewel and channeling, we should be able to make it 10 most of the time.
The principle is to aim at what's the the biggest firsts turns (flames should help, considering that whitering on 4 dices should get dispelled most of the times (because if not, bows re-rolling to hit and wounding on 2-3's means doom), than sweap what's left...
Survivability has always been an issue. True, they get to hit back now, but we get more attacks. High Elves still hit like a sock full of 2nd edition dreadnoughts in close combat.
Relying on shooting is going to handicap you. Especially against horde units now. So many bodies that your str 3 attacks just won't whittle them down enough.
Nights Justice Space Marines
Eldar Eth Kariel Craftworld
Spear of Kurnous - High Elf Expeditionary Army
Well, the thing about Wood Elves is we do not rely solely on shooting alone. It is a combination of strong charges, psychology tests, freedom of movement and strong fields of fire. Your focus on one phase alone is cause for concern and what happens when you gotta roll 5-6s to wound (which is usually the case at str3)? And terrain? Just sounds like a free win for the opponent.
Almost a default win for High Elves, even vs Treekin and Treemen
Wood ELf cavalry vs High Elf cavalry
Win for the High Elves apart fro maybe Glade Riders being a slightly better light cav unit - WE have NO heavy cav
Wood Elf shooting vs High Elf shooting
Win for Wood ELves, until the High Elf units hit them and butcher them
High Elf magic vs Wood Elf magic
Win for the High Elves
Wood ELves are a poor reflection on 8th edition rules. They will be faced with units which are steadfast all day long and don't have many steadfast units apart from situational positions when in forests etc. A concerted Horde style force is going to HURT.
High Elves are fragile. SUre WE shooting will fell a rather large number of them. But out of 20 Swordmasters, even 5 hitting a Wood Elf archer unit will make mincemeat out of them...
High Elves are easily one of the top 3 armies in Fantasy right now... Wood Elves are in the lower tiers.
I have seen successful Wood Elf players, there are two versions: nothing but HUGE regiments of Glade Guard, or the player at my lgs, who runs with 1-2 Treemen, multiple units of Treekin, and then bulks the rest up with a 'Lore of Life' and a ton of Glade Guard. He's a cool guy though, so he usually doesn't field that unless you give him a reason to.
However, I will say that High Elves are better in almost every regard. Our toughness is a liability, but we can get our own magic to take care of that- Life. Same toughness as a Wood Elf, same magic as a Wood Elf, but we have higher quality casters (partly because of Teclis, mostly because of magic item availability). Where the Wood Elves falter is in close combat. They don't have anything particularly damaging. Their Trees are scary, but they're not unbeatable, they're expensive, and they don't stand out from the generic line up of soldiers- plus they're Special choices. In 8th edition, you will see close combat. And when you're a High Elf, close combat can be amazing.
If you want a list that plays like classic Wood Elves, you can actually get that with the High Elves. Taking Alith Aenar and a Prince with Shadow Armor, Talisman of Preservation, and Reaver Bow or Bow of the Seafarer and a Greatweapon, and sticking them each into a regiment of 9 Shadow Warriors can do the trick. Back it with a Noble or casters on Eagles, some LSG, and some Fast Cav, and you're golden. Oh, and did I mention that this book has access to RBTs, Dragons, and Teclis? Oh yes kids- it really is a beast.
If you want to march through trees, take White Lions. If you want to play a skirmish or fast-cav army... don't play 8th. If you want to play elves... don't play Wood Elves.
That point was so awesome it had to be made twice! Lol
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