Hey guys, DustyK again to give you some tree homie love. I’m going to discuss the best model the Sylvaneth have available. Our goddess, Alarielle the Everqueen! As always, for more tactics articles, check out the Tactics Corner!
To say Alarielle is amazing is an understatement. She’s clocking in at 620 points and takes up a Leader and a Behemoth slot in your army. Also there’s only one of her allowed. After you read her warscroll, it’s not hard to understand why.
Alarielle is a force multiplier, arguably the best in the game. She ranks right up there with Archaon in buffing your army. She’s a healer, a caster, and one hell of a fighter. With the help of her Beetle Buddy she can easily rip through swarms and hold her own against some elite monsters.
- Spear of Kurnoth is a ranged weapon with a variable range from 30”-10” depending on her current health. It only has one attack with a 3+ to hit and 2+ to wound but has a -2 rend so it’ll pierce most defenses and a damage of D6.
- Talon of the Dwindling is a melee weapon with 1” range that has four attacks with a 3+ to hit and 4+ to wound, dealing one damage. The key to this ability is the special rule that goes along with it. For each model wounded by the talon, at the end of the combat phase you roll 2D6 and compare it to the wounds characteristic and if you over the model’s wounds OR two sixes the model is slain. That means this could get a lucky 12 and kill an Archaon in the first turn; there is nothing sweeter!
- Wardroth Beetle’s Great Antlers is a melee weapon with a 2” range. It has 5 attacks with a 4+ to hit and 3+ to wound. With a -2 rend and variable damage ranging from five to one, this attack can be rather massive. The Sweeping Blows special ability gives +1 to hit rolls if the unit it attacks has five or more models. You are looking at about 3.33 attacks landing on average which produces roughly 2 wounds per attack with this weapon after the +1 to attack. That’s 10 damage when she is undamaged on top of all the damage she has already done that turn. People will underestimate this attack but the numbers don’t lie.
- Alarielle the Everqueen can fly, so no worrying about terrain and models. With a model as big as she is, this is quite helpful!
- Lifebloom: In each of your hero phases she can heal D3 wounds. This is amazing to keep her on the board. With her 16 wounds and 3+ save she’s going to be annoyingly hard to take down, but now she ALSO gets a free D3 heal during your turn!
- Living Battering Ram: If your charge ends within 1” of a terrain feature each unit in that terrain feature suffer D3 mortal wounds. Keep in mind this includes your units too, so do not charge near the Wyldwood holding all your important wraiths!
- Soul Amphorae: This is her strongest ability by a good margin. Each of your hero phases she rolls a dice and she can choose a lower result if she wishes.
- 1-3: Heal each Sylvaneth model within 30” D3 wounds. This is incredible! As long as you keep your tree homies within 30” of her she will be able to keep them alive decently well. Mix that with the Regrowth spell and you have some incredibly resilient treefolk! Also keep in mind thanks to the FAQ models are considered to be within X” of themselves, so this heals Alarielle as well. So not only does she get a free D3 healing each turn, you can always use this to give her another D3 each turn.
- 4: Set up a unit of 2D6 Dryads. You likely won’t be needing this one unless you aren’t running Briawraiths, have some summoning points, and are desperate.
- 5: Set up a unit of D6 Tree-Revenants: A bit better than the Dryads, but normally a D3 healing for everything would be better.
- 6: Set up a Treelord. Base rules this is king, however if you are playing with the General’s Handbook on summoning this becomes far too unreliable and you will likely want to forgo the summoning for healing.
Magic: Alarielle can cast three different spells a turn and unbind three spells a turn. She knows the base two and her special spell Metamorphosis. If you have the Sylvaneth allegiance you also get to learn a spell from the Deepwood Spell Lore table. With that addition those three spells become quite a bit more powerful.
- Metamorphosis: It has a casting value of five and if successful you pick an enemy unit within 16” and roll a number of dice equal to the result of the casting roll and for each result of 4+ that unit takes a mortal wound. If you kill the unit you get to set up a free wyldwood. This spell combined with the Deepwood spell “Throne of Vines” can be incredible. With the +D3 to casting from Throne of Vines this could potentially do 15 rolls for mortal wounds!
Command Ability – Ghyran’s Wrath: Once per game she can allow all Sylvaneth models to reroll wounds. This is a nice one off ability, not quite as good as some of the other big characters. Though, being only 620 points with all her other abilities, I’d say this is still pretty good for the cost.
The main theme of the Sylvaneth is synergy, something that is embodied by Alerielle with her healing abilities and her casting. She is incredibly strong as a standalone model but when you surround her with models that thrive on having high health like Spirit of Durthu and either of the other two Treelord models, she becomes a whole new tier of powerful.
Another amazing addition from the battletome is the Wargroves. Because each Wargrove includes “Any number of other Sylvaneth Models” she can benefit from the Wargrove Battalions! She would be quite powerful combined with any of the Free Spirit battalion since both Spirit of Durthu and the Kurnoth Hunters are pretty durable and can take full advantage of her healing capabilities.
As attractive as her melee attacks might be you want to keep her out of the big brawl. If you keep her in the Wyldwoods and cast all three spells each turn she should be able to clear any tarpit out, however if you move her out to meet the combat she could easily be baited into a trap making it quite difficult to re-position her for her Soul Amphorae ability to make sure to hit your other big models. This is even more important if you are using the alternating turn rule. If you are using that rule you have to be more careful when you play with her as double turns will give your opponent the opening he/she needs to take her down.
As mentioned in the magic portion, take the Throne of Vines with her. She’s the only Sylvaneth who can cast multiple spells (outside of the Gnarlroot battalion) so this gives her two spells that no other Wizard in your army will be casting. With the Rule of One only allowing each spell to be cast once it gives you a lot more utility with all your casters. Make sure to take advantage of the Wyldwood’s Roused by Magic special rule to take out units trying to use your woods.
Positioning is the name of the game with Alarielle and with her 6″-16″ flying movement it shouldn’t be difficult to move around the battlefield and make sure your big models are in range of your healing if it is needed.
Support her with a couple other Branch casters and give at least one if not both of them the Regrowth spell from the Deepwood Spell Lore and cast more healing as well as mystic shield on her every turn. Giving her that 2+ save with a backup +1 from being in terrain will make sure even the strongest of attacks won’t penetrate her save.
Keep in mind that no matter how enticing it may be to make her your general, she will not get a command trait from the allegiance. Along with Archaon and Nagash she falls under the “Named Characters” that do not get to get command traits or artifacts. Pick that Spirit of Durthu and take Gnarled Warrior or Gift of Ghyran and thank me later.
Alerielle takes a lot of focus not only by you but by your opponent when she is on the board. Use that focus to your advantage and try to get your opponent to tunnel vision on her while you are taking map control. Get a caster to take the Treesong spell and use that to make a mobile tree fortress. If you can move your Wyldwood to the center of the map and have Alerielle perched on top of it, there will be little an enemy can do to take map control back from the Sylvaneth.
Let us know what you think about our Everqueen! Do you think she’ll be an unstoppable force in the new General’s handbook Meta, or do you think her bark is worse than her bite?
You can also pick up some cheap models in our Second Hand Shop. Some of these gems are quite rare, sometimes they’re fully painted!