[Sylvan Elves Ideas Repository] Just a few random thoughts

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    • [Sylvan Elves Ideas Repository] Just a few random thoughts

      So just a few random ideas to expand that relatively small Sylvan Elves roster. Drawing on both ye olde Celtic lore and Native American mythos just to make a few new ideas. Just rough brainstorming currently, maybe as an answer to some obvious holes in the roster, but mostly just to flex my creativity muscles after being dormant for so long. Spoiler tagging each entry just to keep them well and truly separate.

      Lord of the Wild Hunt
      This could work as either a kindred or as a true new character based around anointing specific units in a truly aggro fighting style. So here's what the two options might look like:

      As a kindred:

      Lord of the Wild Hunt: (140-190 points) (0-1 per army)
      Forest Prince only
      This model must be your general. It increases its inspiring presence range by 6" and gains +2 Attack Value on the Prince model part. During this model's friendly movement phase, its controller may select one standard-sized friendly unit. That unit must declare a charge this turn, loses its rank bonus to combat resolution, gains +2" advance rate and gains +1 bonus on Attack and Wound rolls if they completed a charge this turn. These bonuses end at the end of the current player turn.

      As a unit:

      Lord of the Wild Hunt (390-420 points) (0-1 per army)
      Single model, Large Infantry, 40x40 mm base
      GlobalAdvMarchDisModel Rules
      6"14"9Forest Walker, Frenzy
      DefensiveHPDefResArm
      5741Magic Resistance (2)
      OffensiveAttOffStrAPAgi
      67528Battle Focus, Lightning Reflexes



      Call the Wild Hunt: During this model's movement phase you may select one friendly standard-sized cavalry or infantry unit. This unit must declare a charge this turn, and loses its rank bonus to combat resolution. In return, the unit gains +2" to its advance range and gains +1 to their Hit and Wound rolls in the combat phase if they completed a charge. All effects of this ability end at the end of the current movement phase.

      Lord of all that is Fey: This model must be your general. It gains +6" to its Inspiring Presence range. It may join a Standard-sized infantry unit and is treated as a Standard sized model when it does so for all purposes, including allocating hits, line of sight and Call the Wild Hunt.

      Options:
      May take a kindred (one choice only):
      • Forest Guardian (50 points)
      • Blade Dancer (45 points)
      Special Items (up to 200)
      Light Armor (10 points)
      Elven Cloak (10 points)
      May take a weapon (one choice only):
      • Spear (10 points)
      • Sylvan Blades (10 points)
      • Great Weapon (25 points)
      • Lance (25 points)
      • Sylvan Lance (25 points)
      Mount Options:
      • Eagle King (80 points)
      • Dragon (420 points)


      Purpose of the Model: This model is specifically meant to give Sylvan Elves a tool to increase their mobility (specifically in the form of threat ranges) and to drive Sylvan Elves towards a much more aggressive, in your face play style. The stats and abilities are worthless for a sit back and shoot style of army against anything but enemy chaff units, or when an enemy unit has already been heavily enough depleted by said shooting for the ranged units to have a chance to break the enemy in CC. Also note, while the kindred/ Call the Wild Hunt removes rank bonuses to CR, it does not remove the ranks themselves for determining steadfast, meaning that blocks of, say, Forest guard and Rangers have a spike in their rank-breaking potential.

      Now, for many SE units (which have light troops) this won't be much of a downside... and that's intentional, because those units are made of glass and won't get the largest bonus from this ability regardless. Those units already hit well (typically with paired weapons), and hit hard. They will benefit far more from the extra movement to ensure they actually reach combat than the bonus to hit or wound. Other units, though, such as Dryads, Rangers, Forest Guard and Heath Riders, will certainly appreciate all of the buffs, and this can both make them a powerful offensive unit and actually get them into a combat of their choice for one turn, with enough killing power to potentially break similarly-tiered mass infantry. Something that the core units legitimately have trouble doing.

      The second major part of this model is that it is meant to allow the Sylvan Elf army to deploy a bit wider, especially on the back of a dragon. And yes, being mounted on a dragon is meant to be an option for this LORD of the WILD HUNT. It is incredibly thematic (throwing the primal fury and power of a dragon at your foes) and is why the kindred/ Lord of all that is Fey say +6" range inspiring presence. Such a combo is incredibly expensive, so hard to really label as an “abuse.”


      Thicket Wardens/ Hunters
      This is an Unseen Arrows monstrous tree unit that shoots and stabs. And stabs and shoots. A fusion between elven precision and treekin endurance. Unlike other treekin, this unit does not have scoring capabilities.

      Thicket Wardens (320-340 points)
      3 models, Large Infantry, 40x40 mm base[/b]
      GlobalAdvMarchDisModel Rules
      5"10"8Forest Walker, Sylvan Spirit
      DefensiveHPDefResArm
      3552Aegis (5+), Flammable
      OffensiveAttOffStrAPAgi
      35413



      Shepherd's Hands: As long as a unit with this rule is within 6" of a forest, a Thicket Shepherd, or a unit containing a Thicket Shepherd model, R&F models in the unit must reroll hit rolls of 1 on close combat attacks and gains Battle Focus.

      Options:
      May take a Champion (20 points)
      Must take a weapon (one choice only):
      • Sylvan Blades (10 points/ model)
      • Great Weapon (15 points/ model)


      Thicket Hunters (340-360 points) (Counts towards Unseen Arrows)
      3 models, Large Infantry, 40x40 mm base[/b]
      GlobalAdvMarchDisModel Rules
      5"10"8Forest Walker, Sylvan Spirit
      DefensiveHPDefResArm
      3452Aegis (5+), Flammable
      OffensiveAttOffStrAPAgi
      24413Thicket Bow



      Thicket Bow: This is a shooting weapon with Quick to Fire, and two modes of fire. Choose which one to use each shooting phase:
      • With 30” range, Multiple Shots (3), Strength 4 and AP 1
      • With 15” range, Strength 5, AP 2 and Multiple Wounds (2; Flying or Gargantuan)


      Purpose of this unit: The ranged version of this one is simple, it exists to give SE a durable unit that can counter scary, scary monsters that the rest of the list would pretty much have to avoid on principle. They are more of a semi-mobile artillery piece that are most effective up close, shooting down their preferred targets (pesky flying units that can match SE maneuverability and, again, high durability monsters), which is a big reason for their unit size of 3 and no ability to purchase additional models.

      The melee variant is a smaller scoring unit, less protected and strong base-line than a unit of Thicket Beasts, but with good weapon skill and weapon options that can make them either even more skilled and better against infantry, or stronger and better against monsters and knights. They are not meant to replace Thicket Beasts, which is why they lack scoring and the ability to get additional models to form a Thicket bunker, but rather to accompany and flank or screen for the scoring Beasts.


      Briar Haunts
      The spookiest ghosts available to SE, these are the souls of highborn elves and dread elves who had the misfortune to be captured by their more savage kin, rather than killed with the rest of their company. Taken, imprisoned, and then twisted as their bodies are infused with the saplings of Aeon trees, their souls becoming entwined and absorbed by that magical sapling, twisting the traitors into servants for their more primal kin. The fey do not forget betrayal. The fey do not forgive. Not even after a thousand generations.

      In battle, these Briar Haunts are sent forth before everyone else and are used to bring the forest with the sylvan elves wherever they go. The roots and magic of the Aeon tree is used to create druid groves, and while saplings like the ones that form the frame of briar haunts cannot create permanent groves, they still promote the growth of saplings and brush that more 'civilized' entities might have trouble dealing with.

      Briar Haunts (210-240 points) (0-2 units/ army)
      5 models, may add up to 10 models for 27 points/ model, Standard Infantry, 25x25mm base
      GlobalAdvMarchDisModel Rules
      6"12"8Ambush, Vanguard, Sylvan Spirit
      DefensiveHPDefResArm
      1440Aegis (5+)
      OffensiveAttOffStrAPAgi
      24414Lightning Reflexes



      Forest Walk with Me: All units within 3" of a unit fully comprised of models with this special rule are treated as if they were within a forest. A unit that successfully completes a charge against a unit of Briar Haunts is treated as if their first two ranks charged through a forest.

      Options:
      May gain Light Troops (3 points/ model)
      May take a weapon (one choice only):
      • Spear (1 point/ model)
      • Sylvan Blades (2 points/ model)


      Command Group Options:
      Champion (20 points)
      Musician (20 points)
      Standard Bearer (20 points)

      Unit purpose: To serve as the fluffy bridge between the forest spirit and elven sides of the army, being literal elf souls absorbed and bound to a wicker body, possessing the skill and fey ruthlessness of one and the durability and strength of the other. The option to deploy them with either Ambush or Vanguard can give them two different roles, either as elite chaff that can put some damage in an enemy that charges them, or as back-line disruptors and war machine hunters, both roles that the Sylvan Elves could use more of, and two roles that the army should be good at, having deployment and mobility as army strengths.

      The max and min unit size is purposefully kept low here, these are rare creatures despite being in core, and they do not have scoring so that they cannot be crutched on completely. At max size they might be able to anvil for a turn against a block of low- or moderate- tier infantry without support, but their numbers prevent them from usurping the roll of handling those units from something like the Treekin or Rangers. They have their roles, and should be used more like a scalpel or severe speedbump to fulfill those roles.

      Their aura does not provide the benefits of being in a forest to anything beyond 3", so they don't actually grant the cover of a forest to something that would be 10" behind them like a normal forest. Additionally, their forest ability works for allies and enemies, so enemies with Strider get stubborn and ignore the dangerous terrain tests that charging through a forest belonging to Sylvan Elves would provoke. Also, the wording of when the aura effectively provokes dangerous terrain tests to chargers and to what models is specifically worded so that light troops (and other no-rank entities) suffer no penalties for doing so. They are not real forests, just kinda "close enough" for the shoe to fit.


      The Roc and Phoenix
      The fact that Sylven Elves, the elves that are most associated with the forces of primal nature, have only trees as supernatural allies is... frankly, weird. Hence this option.

      Phoenixes are beings of primordial flame as far as I know, either elementals that have taken flesh or ancient birds that are aspected with flames, which might not seem like the most Sylvan Elf thing of all time being they are all foresty and druidy and hippy and whatever. However, Sylvan Elves are the fey courts more than they are unbridaled plant growth, which includes houses of every major element, including the primordial destructive flame that cleanses the land and allows for new growth and change. Thematically, the Phoenix fits here for sure.

      The Roc, on the other hand, is drawn from storm bird myth, specifically the Native American Roc, in which these great eagles are able to call storms and channel lightning to strike the earth in order to strike down intruders within their land. They are wise, powerful beings, proud and arrogant in their superiority, and Sylvan Elves are the only race able to commune with them in a way that makes them close to equals. Again, definitely thematic for the one-with-nature SE and the wild, storm-like nature of their campaigns of vengeance and expansion.

      Spirit of Storms (0-2 choice)
      Single model, Gargantuan Beast, 50x100 mm base
      GlobalAdvMarchDisModel Rules
      Ground
      Fly
      2"


      9"
      4"
      18"
      8Fly (9", 18"), Light Troops, Sylvan Spirit
      DefensiveHPDefResArm
      5553
      OffensiveAttOffStrAPAgi
      45524



      Options:
      Must become one of the following:
      • Phoenix (395 points): Gains Aegis (5+, 2+ against flaming attacks), Flaming Attacks, Sweeping Attacks (d6, +d3 for each rank beyond first) with Str 4, AP 1. Also has Rebirth from the HBE Phoenix, except there is no rider option so it's always a 5+
      • Roc (495 points): Gains Aegis 6+, Hard Target and the following shooting attack:
        • Storm Burst (2+): Range 12", Strength 5, Armor Piercing 2, Accurate, Quick to Fire, Multiple Shots (d3, +d3 for each rank in target unit beyond the first)


      Unit Purpose: Sylvan Elves are supposed to be fast, they are supposed to be one of the most evasive armies (still forced to engage, but only against targets that they have softened up first and which they have good chances against), and they are supposed to be supremely mobile. Flying, light troops birds with lower toughness that have ways to pick apart the larger infantry units that Sylvan Elves have so many problems with like deathstars are definitely a weakness that SE have with their play style. Which, when combined with their weakness to gunlines (at least for the elven side of things, treekin are mostly good against shooting), and combined with their weakness to pyromancy, and combined with their weakness to wide formations of cheap troops that can kill light and no armor troops exceptionally efficiently... well, it's a weakness that a unit patching, not fixing outright, is something that should make more aggressive playstyles a bit more fun.

      Phoenixes do this with their iconic sweeping attacks. Unlike their HBE brothers, SE deploy these powerful flaming birds by themselves, and in doing so do not assist its rebirth magic (leaving it at a 5+), and do not have the option to sit a rider upon their back. Their sweeping attacks are their primary ability, and require the birb to fly in close and potentially risk retaliation (from charges, exposing themselves to shooting and warmachines, etc) in order to actually make use of it. It's slightly more expensive because it's not part of a limited category and the SE apparently are supposed to have less avoidance options than VC. IDK.

      The much more expensive option is the Roc, which, much like the phoenix, is a HIGHLY mobile unit. However, unlike the Phoenix it is a little bit less well warded and can't do damage while being as mobile, but in return doesn't have to be risked as much. While their Storm Burst might have slightly lower damage potential and might require a hit roll (unlike the Phoenix's sweeping attack,) the fact that it is accurate and quick to fire with a 12" range on a good base Aim score makes them a particularly nasty option to key targets such as deathstars and massed units of the dreaded 50 model count bow goblins. *Shudders.* The fact that this is a shooting weapon is also a boon in that it can potentially double-zap a troublesome unit if you set up in front of it and stand and shoot. That said, given its short range, you are likely going to be giving your enemy the charge after this S&S is resolved, and you cannot choose to flee since Sylvan Spirits are Fearless, so you have to commit to the stand and shoot. As well, since these birbs are not able to march and shoot, they are less able to abuse LoS like the phoenix.

      And once either of these birds gets engaged in melee, their damage output plummets, while the potential of losing them increases exponentially. So positioning their large bases in good locations is key to continued use of your scary big birbs. AKA, they are balanced by requiring at least some skill to get their full potential out of them.



      Skinwalkers
      The hunter and trapper elves that specifically hunt down and slaughter humanoid prey whenever they can. Terrors and stalkers in the night, shapechangers and doppelgangers. The thieves of children, and inspiration for such myths as the Wendigo. This is what Skinwalkers are meant to be. And unlike the other elite skirmish scouts in SE, these are meant to get so up close and personal that their bows are strictly used to clear chaff, since they want to be in melee... heck, they want to be charged in order to inflict the maximum casualties possible.

      Skinwalkers (195-210 points) (counts towards Unseen Arrows)
      5 models, may add up to 5 models for 30 points/ model, Standard Infantry, 20x20 mm base
      GlobalAdvMarchDisModel Rules
      6"12"8Forest Walker, Frenzy, Light Troops, Scout, Skirmisher
      DefensiveHPDefResArm
      1530Distracting, Hard Target, Sylvan Cloak
      OffensiveAttOffStrAPAgi
      24316Hunter's Bow (4+), Lethal Strike, Lightning Reflexes, Sylvan Blades



      Hunter's Bow: Shooting Weapon, range 18", Strength 3, Armor Piercing 1, quick to fire, multiple shots (2), gains +1 Strength when shooting Large, Gargantuan or Light Troops.

      Shifter's Fury: Units made entirely up of models with this rule gain Maximized Roll on charge rolls. When this unit completes a charge, all Rank and File models within it are considered to be in base contact with the unit they charged until the end of the Combat phase.

      Unit Purpose: To be an option for dealing with medium sized units and units with good armor, or even to suicide into harder blocks in order to soften them up.

      Hypothetical Neighsayer: "Hey gnomes, why are these guys cheaper than Blade Dancers?"
      Well, for a min-sized unit, they aren't, really. Blade dancers get 2 additional models effectively on these guys. Each additional model costs less because they are Frenzy units with no protection and they don't have the versatility of the war dances.

      ... Also war dancers are absolutely over-costed for what they bring to the table. At least, in relation to when they were scoring and a decent character bunker.

      Other hypothetical neighsayer: "Shouldn't these guys be, like, way more expensive because avoidance is terrible bad wrong fun, and they are skirmishing shooting infantry?"
      Ah, but that's where the new bow comes in. It has much shorter range than the Sylvan Bow, which means that you have no real room to maneuver to avoid engagement for 4+ turns of the game. Sentinels and Pathfinders (especially pathfinders, who only exist as a points denial bunker, which makes them more expensive, which ironically ONLY makes them a better points denial option in an insane circular, vicious cycle) pay through the nose for these capabilities. Since Skinwalkers can't do that, they are primarily charged for their melee capabilities and their special rules. Avoidance isn't really an issue with these guys.


      Nymphs
      To finish rounding out the fey courts and elemental associations present within the Sylvan Elves that are missing, Nymphs, beautiful spirits of the rivers and lakes, step up to bat. Sylvan spirits who are seductresses and supportive of their elven allies, but not helpless. Nymphs have their own vicious streak, drowning and suffocating foes in the waters that they bring with them.

      Nymphs (135 points) (0-3 choice) (counts towards Special)
      3 models, may add up to 7 models for 39 points/ model, Standard Infantry, 25x25 mm base
      GlobalAdvMarchDisModel Rules
      6"10"9Light Troops, Sylvan Spirit
      DefensiveHPDefResArm
      1541Aegis (5+, 2+ vs Flaming), Distracting
      OffensiveAttOffStrAPAgi
      23415



      Damping Aura: Friendly units without Skirmish within 6" of a unit of Nymphs gain an Aegis (5+ vs wounds caused by spells)

      Dazzling Beauty: Enemy units in base contact with one or more units of Nymphs suffer -2 Offensive Weapon Skill and -2 Agility.

      Unit purpose: To provide the melee elven units in SE a way to weather pyromancy and other magic missile lores without getting utterly rocked by it. Full stop. The extra utility of Dazzling Beauty is there to make them feel like less of a trap choice in matchups where an opponent for some reason doesn't take Pyromancy against your silly flammable elves, and it does emphasize the evasive nature of SE defense and their speed, but given it is a close combat only debuff on an infantry unit, especially one with as small a size as the nymphs possess, it will not be as reliable or powerful as, say, the ice phoenix or as easy to protect as a VC court. Especially with their 6+/5++ being all that's standing between them and pointy, arrow-filled death if an opponent is actually worried about what they might do in combat to their units.

      But yes, this is a small, easy to position unit with some light combat utility that can work to protect your more vulnerable elements from a hard counter without increasing the viability of the shooty avoidance units, and draw the fire of a ranged unit from one of your combat blocks for a turn or chaff something if you are lucky. And... that's pretty much it. The whole unit, right there.
      Apparently I can't have mod tags in my signature anymore. Sadness is cast. It is placed on the stack. Sadness resolves.

      Here have my homebrew

      The post was edited 7 times, last by Gnomes2169 ().

    • Hit enter a bit early. But hey, might as well toss this out there.

      But I am a sleepy lad and Nymphs and Skinwalkers are going to have to wait for some time later, as is the explanation for the roll of he Roc/ Phoenix in this army.
      Apparently I can't have mod tags in my signature anymore. Sadness is cast. It is placed on the stack. Sadness resolves.

      Here have my homebrew
    • I really like the lord of the hunt, the Roc and the skinwalkers. Power/points wise I have no idea, I'm not much of a theory hammerer (/hammerist?). Especially the Lord of the hunt feels very huntery and aggressive.

      I'm not really sold on the Thicket wardens as they feel very much like a way to get the GW models in and I don't like trees with weapons.

      Same goes for the Briar haunts. I don't like elf-forest spirit merges and I don't think SE should go that way.

      The phoenix also doesn't really fit imo. To me Sylvan Elves are about living nature and not really about the four elements, least of all fire.
    • Hmmm... perhaps instead of a phoenix, a giant beatle that can drop fire bombs like a phoenix? Different stats too, to reflect this. No rebirth for sure. Probably only a 6+ ward too.

      I mean, it's based on real world beetles and ants that can effectively shoot napalm from their faces and butts, just made into a sweeping attack instead of a flamethrower. So... it could work? Maybe? IDK. The Roc is the part of the Spirit of Storms I'm more firm on.Feel like moving Roc to being its own unit in the category and just making a separate monstrous unit of slower flying beetles with butt bombs would work a bit better.
      Apparently I can't have mod tags in my signature anymore. Sadness is cast. It is placed on the stack. Sadness resolves.

      Here have my homebrew
    • infamousme wrote:

      I'm just waiting on a beastmaster/beast herd unit to be added.
      I would honestly expect a swarm of insects or pixies more than a beast herd, as that seems to be solidly in the... well... Beast Herds section of things. Maybe a swarm of birds? But not wolves or the like, unfortunately.

      As for a beast master... well, a Master of the Menagerie that buffs up Sylvan Spirits or SE Beasts in general seems like a concept I could work with/ see in the future!
      Apparently I can't have mod tags in my signature anymore. Sadness is cast. It is placed on the stack. Sadness resolves.

      Here have my homebrew
    • The lord of the hunt concept is done well, but personally It's not the way I'd like to see it done. Instead of using the forest prince as a basis I'd be keen to see the Avatar of Nature roll be expanded/converted into a 'Orion-esque' forest daemon prince type character. I think he deserves his own spot on the roster, and that in all honesty the ''angry tree dude with a sword'' is more fitting to be an upgrade on the Treeman Ancient than this sort of model deserves to be an upgrade to a forest prince. As his own slot you could do more interesting things, for example I'd like to see higher offensive skill, lower defensive skill, Resilience 5, 'Manifestations' rather than access to magic items. With access to magic items and kindreds he just seems so hard to balance compared to having a system similar to the exalted herald.

      For Thicket Wardens, they'd be good. They're essentially an elven bolt thrower and a half, but more durable, less ranged options more melee options. Not entirely sure how I'd do it, but I think I'd prefer if the base unit didn't have ranged weapons or cost towards unseen arrows leaving them to have more elite melee stats, then taking the bow upgrade reduces their melee prowess and puts them against Unseen arrows, ala Shabti. I get Str 4 Res 5, they are less bulky than thicket beasts and more precise, I'd perhaps make them a more offensive version of thickets. Ws 5, Hatred if within 3'' of a forest, or all the time if the Thicket Shepherd is in the unit.

      Spooky trees deserve to be a special unit in my opinion. And more elite/scary. When I spitballed a Sylvan Spirit auxillary army I made a very similar unit, but with 3 attacks each and hatred. I had them with light troops and ambush*, *(they can choose to ambush completely within 6'' of a forest and outside of 6'' of enemy models). Then what made the unit fancy was that when the unit completed a charge out of or through a forest, for that round of combat the unit lost light troops and gained Dev charge (Swift stride, Fear). I.E it was designed to be a scary 12/14 man unit that teleported in and chased down small backline units like spooky SAS trees. Also being in special gives more list diversity to a Sylvan Spirit list than small trees, bigger trees, biggest trees.

      Long story short? I think the forest spirits you've suggested deserve their own auxiliary Sylvan Spirit list. And the Lord of the Hunt, Skin Walkers and Nymphs (give us some sort of non-tree Spirit! please!) into the full book. Lord of the Hunt to get expanded into his own entry and Shifters perhaps being stream-lined (Savage hunters and ALSO cunning trap makers/accurate archers doesn't mesh with me, I'd perhaps like to see them loose the trap rule and the bow, gain Throwing weapons which applies their lethal strike to ranged attacks).

      Try your hand at a Sprite Swarm entry? I'd be interested to see what you'd do with the concept.

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Alexwellace ().

    • Okay, finally coming on in here! Took a while to get a bit less busy so that I can give proper answers to some of the more in-depth critiques, or to at least answer some of the suggestions. So here we go!

      Arjelte wrote:

      I really like the lord of the hunt, the Roc and the skinwalkers. Power/points wise I have no idea, I'm not much of a theory hammerer (/hammerist?). Especially the Lord of the hunt feels very huntery and aggressive.

      Thank you! Points-wise I was sticking to a range of what I estimated was fair, but I'm not really sure about them either. And good to know that the Lord is doing his job well. :D

      Arjelte wrote:

      I'm not really sold on the Thicket wardens as they feel very much like a way to get the GW models in and I don't like trees with weapons.

      Same goes for the Briar haunts. I don't like elf-forest spirit merges and I don't think SE should go that way.

      The phoenix also doesn't really fit imo. To me Sylvan Elves are about living nature and not really about the four elements, least of all fire.

      Honestly, fair enough. This whole thread is just for random musings on what I think would be fitting for new SE units. Just something to possibly draw on since there are multiple models on the market for these types of creatures. I'll agree that the three of them probably belong more in an auxiliary "Forces of Nature" book, but the Briar Haunts in particular definitely fit the theme of SE. Maybe maybe they wouldn't even be normal SE spirits trapped living on in wooden bodies, but rather the spirits of HBE or DE bound and enslaved as "punishment" for betraying what the elves were, and subverting the natural order in their own unique ways.

      Alexwellace wrote:

      The lord of the hunt concept is done well, but personally It's not the way I'd like to see it done. Instead of using the forest prince as a basis I'd be keen to see the Avatar of Nature roll be expanded/converted into a 'Orion-esque' forest daemon prince type character. I think he deserves his own spot on the roster, and that in all honesty the ''angry tree dude with a sword'' is more fitting to be an upgrade on the Treeman Ancient than this sort of model deserves to be an upgrade to a forest prince. As his own slot you could do more interesting things, for example I'd like to see higher offensive skill, lower defensive skill, Resilience 5, 'Manifestations' rather than access to magic items. With access to magic items and kindreds he just seems so hard to balance compared to having a system similar to the exalted herald.

      Honestly when I was making these options, it was coming fresh off of the idea that the elven part of the Sylvan Elves weren't getting all too much love, I didn't even think about making the Lord of the Wild Hunt into an Aspect of Nature. Which makes plenty of sense... but he is also more of a flesh-and-blood incarnation of the Wild Hunt rather than a tree. At least in my mind. And as a fleshy incarnation, to me the Elf base with the ability to join units did make a bit more sense... but if a more solo, stand-alone monster is desired, I could add in a third version as well.

      I do agree that the honors I tacked on were silly, and should be dropped. For the elf version, though, the enchantments still make sense because he is still an intelligent creature, using tools is something he should do, and magical tools are available to him because of it. It's not like he's an incarnation of the more tree or earthen style nature, that makes weapons as it needs them from its bark/ the earth and plants around it on a whim.

      Alexwellace wrote:

      For Thicket Wardens, they'd be good. They're essentially an elven bolt thrower and a half, but more durable, less ranged options more melee options. Not entirely sure how I'd do it, but I think I'd prefer if the base unit didn't have ranged weapons or cost towards unseen arrows leaving them to have more elite melee stats, then taking the bow upgrade reduces their melee prowess and puts them against Unseen arrows, ala Shabti. I get Str 4 Res 5, they are less bulky than thicket beasts and more precise, I'd perhaps make them a more offensive version of thickets. Ws 5, Hatred if within 3'' of a forest, or all the time if the Thicket Shepherd is in the unit.

      I'll have to look up how the Shabti are written to get the exact language, but I do like that. More skilled and intelligent because of the spirits bound within their frame (they aren't called thicket beasts, after all), but a bit less out-right powerful because of the lack of that primal instinct. If they are split like this (into melee only and ranged only variants,) the melee trees are likely getting scoring. Even if losing a single model loses them the rule, since iirc you need a full rank to score, it's still something to help bump up the melee variant in favor of the ranged one.

      For the hatred ability, I think that something like, "When this unit is within 6" of a forest terrain piece, a Thicket Shepherd, or another unit containing a Thicket Shepherd, they gain Hatred/ Battle Focus and must reroll rolls of 1 on close combat attacks/ whatever makes sense for a hyper-elite unit to be inspired by their shepherd tree buddy." Specifically because it doesn't require you to take a shepherd for each unit to ensure that they can function (especially since they are a 3-man unit, max, so they can't really protect your shepherd bro,) and it doesn't rely entirely on random terrain placement being kind and giving you more than the one forest you (and your opponent) know will be on the battlefield. The 6" range is so even the tree parts of the army can still feel a little bit SE and spread out a bit wider.

      Alexwellace wrote:

      Spooky trees deserve to be a special unit in my opinion. And more elite/scary. When I spitballed a Sylvan Spirit auxillary army I made a very similar unit, but with 3 attacks each and hatred. I had them with light troops and ambush*, *(they can choose to ambush completely within 6'' of a forest and outside of 6'' of enemy models). Then what made the unit fancy was that when the unit completed a charge out of or through a forest, for that round of combat the unit lost light troops and gained Dev charge (Swift stride, Fear). I.E it was designed to be a scary 12/14 man unit that teleported in and chased down small backline units like spooky SAS trees. Also being in special gives more list diversity to a Sylvan Spirit list than small trees, bigger trees, biggest trees.


      I'll agree on the special unit classification, they definitely should get bumped up to there. However, I feel mostly okay with the rules on this unit thus far. Vanguard and Ambush together already cover most of the weird deployment bases that you could hit with ambushing from forests specifically, at least from a tactical perspective. If I were to add something, maybe I would keep the cost the same, but give them a utility ability to help the rest of the army. Something like, "At the beginning of your magic phase, if this unit has 10 or more models in it, you may remove the unit from the game as a casualty and replace them with a piece of forest terrain up to 60mm x 40mm" or "when this unit is removed from the game as a casualty, you may roll a d6. On a roll of 4+, you may remove a forest without any enemy units within it from the game, and replace it with a unit of Briar Haunts. These new Briar Haunts have the same equipment and command attachment options taken as the original unit, but count as a new unit for all intents and purposes. This unit has either 10 Briar Haunts or the number of briar haunts the original unit had when it was deployed."

      Heck, maybe both of those. Who knows? I'm wild and craaaaaaaaaaaaazy.

      Also note, with Sylvan Blades these guys hit 3 attacks/ model too.

      Alexwellace wrote:

      Long story short? I think the forest spirits you've suggested deserve their own auxiliary Sylvan Spirit list. And the Lord of the Hunt, Skin Walkers and Nymphs (give us some sort of non-tree Spirit! please!) into the full book. Lord of the Hunt to get expanded into his own entry and Shifters perhaps being stream-lined (Savage hunters and ALSO cunning trap makers/accurate archers doesn't mesh with me, I'd perhaps like to see them loose the trap rule and the bow, gain Throwing weapons which applies their lethal strike to ranged attacks).

      Try your hand at a Sprite Swarm entry? I'd be interested to see what you'd do with the concept.

      I can agree that the tree people likely belong in their own book, even if auxiliary army books aren't the rage anymore. Trees can be expanded upon a lot, and a companion book for SE to do just that is something I could look forward to. However, these guys do have their own niche, so they could be part of the main book too if a full tree army is... for some reason... unwanted.

      Skinwalkers should lose the traps, agreed, those fit better on the Pathfinders anyway. But the bows are there to stay. Specifically because they are in unseen arrows, and because throwing weapons just have too little range to see any use. If you are going to use throwing weapons, you would just take the charge option instead. Maybe change it to Aim (4+) with March and Fire as well, so that it can always be used on the aggressive offensive, but still definitely there to stay.

      And I'll see what I can brew up! Both sprites and some big ol' beetle bois! :D
      Apparently I can't have mod tags in my signature anymore. Sadness is cast. It is placed on the stack. Sadness resolves.

      Here have my homebrew
    • Gnomes2169 wrote:

      infamousme wrote:

      I'm just waiting on a beastmaster/beast herd unit to be added.
      I would honestly expect a swarm of insects or pixies more than a beast herd, as that seems to be solidly in the... well... Beast Herds section of things. Maybe a swarm of birds? But not wolves or the like, unfortunately.
      As for a beast master... well, a Master of the Menagerie that buffs up Sylvan Spirits or SE Beasts in general seems like a concept I could work with/ see in the future!
      Look at the implications rather than the actual name of a beast herd. Think rather a unit much like the dark eldar beast master works with his beasts in 40k. Hounds, bears, birds or wild cats to accompany them.
      As a side note, I really do wish a different name had been chosen for the army faction "beast herds".