The Wood Elves Lore is considered to be the weakest Lore around.
1. 6 Spells only.
2. No Lore Attribute.
3. Only lore available to Hero Casters.
4. Signature spell causes only minor damage and slow random movement makes it unreliable. Damage is only useful against Skirmishers and they are rarely taken.
5. Fury of the Forest is minor damage against Skirmishers and they are rarely taken.
6. Hidden Path gives the unit Strider - when they already have Forest Strider, and in an army that is either MSU or largely resilient to non-magic shooting anyway.
7. Twilight Host is identical to Aspect of the Dreadknight - arguably the most useless spell in a powerful Lore.
8. Ariel's Blessing is a randomly rolled spell, which gives Regen, when the signature for Life gives the same effect, and a more effective lore elsewhere.
9. Call of the Hunt is the only remaining "Charge-allowed" movement spell. You can first turn Flank Charge a Wild Rider unit here - 12" Vanguard, 18" March, and then 2D6" Call of the Hunt. It also gives them an extra attack - which considering a 150 pt unit putting out 11 S5 attacks on the charge followed by 11 S4 Attacks is fairly decent, however, it's a one trick pony, a High Casting Cost, a none-resilient unit, an inability to guarantee getting the spell (you'd be foolish to take the lore on a l4 after all)... Yeah, not much fun at all.
So, what else does that leave us?
Obviously, we can predict that Beasts and Life will become available in the new book for Hero Casters.
So, assuming that, what other lores will become available for us? Every other army seems to be getting wider access to the spells - Ogres for example - Gut Magic soon became Heavens, Beasts, Fire, etc, Nehekharan's became Light and Death. Orcs... well, their Lores became more useable - Little Waaagh is arguably one of the nastiest if it's applied to any other army out there.
Fire - Fire and Wood? Not really.
Metal - Daith is mentioned quite a lot, for her Reaper and the Spirit Sword.
Light - Blessed by Isha, and with fighting the Undead.
Heavens - Naieth the Prophetess.
Shadow - Shadowfey, Dark Forest
Death - Angry angry forest.
I think that if any, Heavens and Metal would be Special Character only. Fire is obviously a nono. Light is unlikely, they don't seem particularly obsessed with Light and Purity.
So; Death and Shadow. Many people love Shadow.
But exactly how powerful will they be?
Life and Beasts both support huge blocks of troops to get the most benefit from the large number of augments. Unless Eternal Guard and Treekin get buffed, made more accessible in model terms as well, there is not much that exceptionally benefits these lores. MSU and movement wood elves do not get as much benefit as a Temple Guard block, or Spear Horde, say.
And what does Death bring?
Sniper Spells - to take down Characters and other Leadership Boosting Items (Stubborn Hats, BSB's, Standard's of Discipline) in an army with large amounts of Fear Causing models, Panic Causing Items, Terror Causing monsters. Leadership nerfs - among an army with Sniper Spells, Fear and Terror causing monsters. Fear and Terror causing spells among an army of Fear and Terror causing with Leadership nerfs and Sniper spells. A Strength and Toughness modifier on an army with High Strength and Long Ranged, accurate move and fire shooting, amplifying Panic Tests, among an army of Fear and Terror causing units.
And one immensely powerful Direct Damage spell capable of taking down low Initiative units that typically have High Protection against the typical strengths of the Wood Elves - e.g Lizardmen, Vampires, Ogres, and Nurgle+Khorne Daemons.
Shadow - An enemy slowing spell, in an army based around Shooting and outmaneuvreing the enemy, a Flying spell on a Treeman Ancient. A Strength reduction spell on an army with access to large amounts of T4+. A Toughness reduction spell on an army with lots of Shooting, amplifying their ability to shoot S4, and even make their S3 shooting powerful. A Sniper Cannonball spell capable of dealing with Low Initiative enemies that are typically resilient to Wood Elves strengths - Ogres, Vampires, Lizardmen, Nurgle Daemons. A Nuke Spell capable of removing above units, while Mindrazor amplifies the ability of having Ld9-10 Elite Infantry, that also happen to be stubborn, have multiple attacks and fight in two ranks...
Opinions? Any homebrewed Lore of Athel Loren you can come up with?
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