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Sylvaneth Warcry Warband – Guide, Tactics & Overview

The Sylvaneth are the children of Alarielle, the Everqueen, the goddess of life.

Originally from Ghryan, the Realm of Life, they are now spread across all mortal realms and favour living in wild places like forests and woods.

The Age of Chaos forced them to retreat but now is the Season of War.

Will you listen to the spirit-song and answer Alarielle’s call?

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What changed in Warcry: Sentinels of Order for the Sylvaneth Warband?

Note: The new Warcry books released with Tome of Champions 2020 brought some changes in how Thralls, Monsters but especially Allies work. The roster of available leaders has been massively increased and it’s now possible to use more than one as a “Hero” (1 in matched play and up to 3 in a Narrative campaign).

Link to the 4 new books:

Warcry: Sentinels of Order (all Order warbands updated)
Warcry: Harbingers of Destruction (all Destruction warbands updated)
Warcry: Agents of Chaos (all non-warcry specific Chaos warbands updated)
– Warcry: Bringers of Death (all death warbands updated)

In the Sentinels of Order book Sylvaneth saw the addition of 3 new leaders, bringing the total of available fighters to 15.

The new fighters are:

  1. Arch-Revenant
  2. Branchwych
  3. Branchwraith

The new abilities are: Zephyrspite’s Tail Pincers, Swarm of Spites, Blessing of the Forest and Call to Battle.

Background and Lore of the Sylvaneth Warband

The Sylvaneth are the forest spirits created from soulpods by Alarielle, Queen of the Radiant Wood, in the Age of Myth.

The name Sylvaneth, in reality corresponds to many different creatures, that are grouped together in armies called wargroves.

They defend nature and their sylvan habitats, most wary of any intruders, others more accepting of potential allies.

The bulk of the wargroves is made of Dryads, once gentle creatures now ferocious in their hit-and-run tactics, usually led by a Branchwraith.

Massive champions, Treelords and Treelord Ancients, lead the Noble Spirits, the more martial of the Sylvaneth of which the Tree-Revenants form the standing army.

Other tree creatures known as Free Spirits do not belong to any clan but still listen to Alarielle and answer her call.

Of those, the Kurnoth Hunters are possessed with brutal strength and agility and they are equally proficient with blades, scythes, or bows.

Finally, the Spite-Revenants are part of the Outcasts, a darker reflection of their kin, unable to hear the spirit-song, the way to communicate used by the Sylvaneth, unless when it is a call for war.

They are also not welcome in time of peace because of the atrocities they, and their leader Drycha, have committed.

Small warbands called Forest Stalkers are sent to the Eighpoints by the Everqueen herself to exact revenge against those Chaos worshippers that indulged in Ghyran or to retrieve precious artifacts or lamentiri, the essence of forest spirits.

But how do a Sylvaneth Warband play on the tabletop?

If you can’t see the wood for the trees, let’s analyse them in detail.

Overview and Points for the fighters in the Sylvaneth Warband

Note: if you haven’t read the basic rules for Warcry before reading this article, it might be helpful to know that the game’s abilities are activated by using 6 dice that you roll at the start of your turn.

If two of the dice show the same value, they can be used to activate a Double ability. If three show the same value, they can be used for a Triple ability, and so on.

So, when this article refers to an ability being a Double, a Triple or a Quad, it refers to this system. It might sound a bit confusing, but takes no time to get used to when you start playing

The Sylvaneth warband is made from 6 kits with 15 options of which 9 are leaders.

All the fighters for the Sylvaneth Warband

Arch-Revenant: 250 points

The latest model for the Sylvaneth is also the most expensive leader of the Forest Stalkers.

He doesn’t hit as hard as a Kurnoth, but has a good melee profile with 2″ range, 4 Attacks at Strength 4 for 2/5 damage.

He is the fastest unit in the Sylvaneth with 10″ Movement, flying and decent resistance with Toughness 4 and 25 Wounds.

He has also a plethora of abilities as well: Draw from the Spirit-song is available to all Forest Stalkers and allows to heal up to 3 Wounds for a Double while Envoy of the Everqueen is a Leader ability that allows to increase up to +3 Toughness and Strength of all nearby fighters making the Forest Stalkers veritable power-houses (at the cost of a Quad)

Zephyrspite’s Tail Pincers is his own ability that allows to do up to 6 damage to an enemy within 1″ if stats align. For that to happens you need a Double of value 6 and roll 5+ on a single dice, otherwise on a 3 or 4 you do 1 damage (independently of the value of the Double) and have a 33% chance to do 0 damage.

This is a trend we are going to see often in this warband, where certain abilities have a good chance to do nothing.

The final ability costs a Triple and has a limited range (3″) but can increase the Attacks of nearby units by 1.

In combo with other abilities, like the Enrapturing Song can have a little (and cheap) creature like the Dryad make 6 attacks per action…

Branchwraith: 180 points

The Branchwraith is the first spellcaster introduced in the Forest Stalkers, and as such she has a 7″ ranged attack for 3/6 damage useful to hit from the second line while staying close to the fight.

Her melee attacks also to not do be underestimated with Strength 3 and damage 2/4.

But Toughness 3 means she is going to be hit a lot, and 22 Wounds will not last forever including the healing…

Speaking of which, for a Triple, she can heal anyone of 1 damage within 6″. 1 Wound healed, even on a 6″ bubble, is not going to make that much of a difference however…

To compare, for a Triple, as she is a Leader she could use Inspiring Presence to double-turn the opponent (immediately activate another friendly fighter nearby skipping your opponent) or she could heal herself up to 6 Wounds with Respite, or up to 3 but just with a Double (Draw from the Spirit-song).

Apart from this hiccup she is a good fighter.

Branchwych: 180 points

On paper another useful support character with same ranged attack as the Branchwraith, but a 2″ melee attack that allows here to fight in melee without being enganged.

Considering her fragile constitution that is a boon to not underestimate. Her damage in melee goes down to 1/4 however.

Then we have another random damaging ability: roll up to 6 dice (depending on the value of the Double), on a 4+ allocate 1 damage, otherwise none. Statistically it means 50% of the dice you roll.

For the same Double, you could heal her for 3 damage for sure without gambling.

Despite this it’s still a potential damage dealer at the cost of just a Double on a decent fighter.

Kurnoth Hunters

Kurnoth Hunters for the Sylvaneth Warband in Warcry

  • Kurnoth Huntmaster with Greatbow: 240 points
  • Kurnoth Huntmaster with Scythe: 240 points
  • Kurnoth Huntmaster with Greatsword: 230 points
  • Kurnoth Hunter with Greatbow: 200 points
  • Kurnoth Hunter with Scythe: 190 points
  • Kurnoth Hunter with Greatsword: 180 points

The Kurnoth Hunters are the most expensive model in the Sylvaneth Warband outside of the Arch-Revenant, but also the most versatile.

The Huntmasters are the leaders of this warband and they have 5 wounds more (35 instead of 30), same movement (4”) and Toughness (4).

As leaders they have access to Envoy of the Everqueen to increase Toughness and Strength of friendly fighters. A horde of cheap Tree-Revenants, with Strength and Toughness 6, can now punch much higher than their weight while the Kurnoth can become devastating and very tough.

The Greatbow is the farthest ranged option available to this warband with an amazing 20” range. 2 attacks (3 for the Huntmaster) at Strength 4 (can be increased with the Leader ability as there is no range limit) performing 2-5 damage allow interesting tactics where you can snipe out enemies from afar and makes up for the otherwise slower movement (4”).

In melee they will survive thanks to the many wounds and decent Toughness, but their 3 attacks with 1-3 damage will make them no more useful than a 50 points Tree-Revenant, so avoid contact at all costs.

The Scythe is the heavy-hitting option: 3 attacks (4 for the Huntmaster) with 2” range at Strength 4 for 3-6 damage can be decisive on many occasions.

The Greatsword instead provides more attacks (4 o 5 for the Huntmaster), with 1” range, same Strength but slightly less damage (2-5).

Usually more attacks means more potential damage, but here we are pretty close and the Scythe provides 2″ range that opens up different options…

Spite-Revenants

Spite Revenants for the Sylvaneth Warband in Warcry

  • Shadestalker: 140 points
  • Spite-Revenant: 70 points

The Spite-Revenants are one variant of the Tree-Revenants box. Their special ability allows to block an enemy on a 3+ for a Double.

Sure it’s only 66% chance to succeed and depending on the Double, the Spite has to be from 1″ to 6” distance from the enemy, but in the end if it works can prevent an enemy from running away or from grabbing an objective last minute.

The Shadestalker as a leader can also use the special Quad ability that increases Strength and Toughness within a 6” bubble.

The profile itself of the Spite is in line with the low cost (70 points): only 8 wounds, movement 4”, Toughness 3 and 4 attacks at Strength 4 for 1-3 damage.

The Shadestalker adds more wounds (16), one attack (5) and more damage (2-4).

Tree-Revenants

Tree-Revenants for the Sylvaneth Warband in Warcry

  • Scion: 120 points
  • Tree-Revenant: 50 points

The Tree-Revenants have an interesting strategic ability: they can be moved anywhere from the battlefield at the cost of a Triple.

It does not matter if they are engaged or far away from the enemy.

If there is an objective undefended, they are carrying a treasure, or they are the target of an enemy action, they can just disappear and reappear on the other side of the board.

It cannot be used as an offensive strategy because they appear more than 5” from an enemy and with 4” movement and a weapon range of 1” would take them 2 turns to engage any enemy.

Despite this, they are also one of the cheapest model in the game, so they can be used in hordes to protect Kurnoth Hunters, engage an enemy unit before it gets to a key member of your army and so on.

Their profile is similar to that of the Spites, the only difference being the 3 attacks at Strength 3.

The Scion has 4 attacks at Strength 3 with same damage as the Shadestalker (2-4).

Dryads

Dryads for the Sylvaneth Warband in Warcry

  • Branch Nymph: 145 points
  • Dryad: 70 points

The Dryads also have  an interesting horde-ability.

If one “shouts” at an enemy in range, every Dryad adds +1 Attack against that enemy (at the cost of a Triple, the distance based on the value of the ability).

Dryads have 4 attacks at Strength 3 (4 for the Branch Nymph) and can cause small damage (1-3) but in numbers and with 10 attacks (with the shout) per activation they can represent a problem. Or event 12 with an Arch-Revenant around and another Triple available…

They are also more resilient than their Revenant counterparts with 10 wounds (20 for the Nymph), Toughness 3 and Movement 5”.

The Nymph does the same damage as the Scion and the Shadestalker (2-4) but she is also the most expensive of the 3.

As all leaders she can also use the Envoy of the Everqueen ability.

Abilities for the Sylvaneth Warcry Warband

  • Draw from the Spirit-song (Double, Everyone): Heal up to 3 Wounds.
  • Trample Underfoot (Double, all Kurnoth): Do as much as 6 damage to an engaged enemy (on a 4+).
  • Shrieking Terror (Double, all Spite-Revenants): A chance to block an enemy preventing move or disengage actions (on a 3+).
  • Zephyrspite’s Tail Pincers (Double, Arch-Revenant): A chance to do up to 6 damage to an engaged enemy.
  • Swarm of Spites (Double, Swarm of Spites): A chance to do up to 6 damages to an enemy within 6″ (on a 4+).
  • Enrapturing Song (Triple, Dryad and Branch Nymph): Target an enemy up to 6″ away. Add +1 to the Attacks performed by Dryads (or Branch Nymph) against that enemy.
  • Walk the Spirit Path (Triple, all Tree-Revenants): Remove this fighter from the battlefield and place it anywhere on the battlefield floor, 5” from any enemy fighter.
  • Blessing of the Forest (Triple, Branchwraith): Heal 1 damage to all friendly fighters within 6″.
  • Call to Battle (Triple, Arch-Revenant): Add +1 to the melee Attacks of friendly fighters within 3″.
  • Envoy of the Everqueen (Quad, all Leaders): Add up to +3 to the Toughness and Strength of friendly fighters within 6”.

Strategy and Tactics for the Sylvaneth Warband

The Sylvaneth are a well-balanced warband: they have ranged units, although expensive, heavy lifters and cheap dispensable units.

They have interesting abilities like Draw from the Spirit-song that allows all Sylvaneth to heal as much as 3 wounds per turn even when in combat.

Respite, the universal ability, costs a Triple and can heal up to 6 wounds, but only if there is no enemy fighter within 1”, giving some interesting healing alternatives in this warband.

Leave your opponent in disbelief when your almost dying Kurnoth gets some extra juice while still engaged. Or save your leader from certain death adding a couple of wounds more.

But they also have other cards up their sleeves like the ability for Tree-Revenants to abandon a fight and re-appear anywhere on the battlefield just in time to grab an objective or to evade the final blow when they are the target of your opponent.

Or even to engage a key unit of your opponent to delay his move towards another objective.

They can even prevent such movement with a Spite-Revenant and their ability Shrieking Terror that costs only a Double but they need to be close and it’s not guaranteed (2 chances out of 3). 

On the other hand with Toughness 3 and 8 or 10 wounds most cheap units will disappear really quickly so you will need to compromise between how many Kurnoth you want in your army, and how many others should accompany them.

Something that can give more survivability is the Quad ability all leaders have.

In that case you want your leader to be as close as possible to where the action is, discouraging the use of a Kurnoth Huntmaster with Greatbow., while the Arch-Revenant becomes perfect with his 10″ flying movement. One turn with high Toughness also gives more breathing room to the Kurnoth in general.

If you follow the horde path, nothing is better than many Dryads charging towards a specific enemy, especially with a big base to allow maximisation of units around it, and the use of the Enrapturing Song to increase the chances of a critical hit by adding more attacks.

Or simply to project potential power.

To resume, a Forest Stalker warband has few options for leaders, like an Arch-Revenant or an Huntmaster, at least a Kurnoth armed with Greatbow and one with Scythe (one of them could be the leader) and a group of Dryads, Tree-Revenants and Spite-Revenants depending on personal preference.

Dryads are quicker and have more wounds allowing for an efficient screening for the big boys.

Tree-Revenants can snitch objectives or force your opponent to not abandon their post and Spite-Revenants can fill the gaps.

You will need to plan carefully but, in the end, can be extremely satisfying.

Pros and Cons of the Sylvaneth Warband

Pros:

+ Decent mobility
+ Ability to heal
+ Varied abilities and strategies

Cons:

– Medium hitters
– Random abilities

Some thematic warbands for the Forest Stalkers

Just for fun here we present few thematic warbands, meant more for fun or narrative context than for competitive play. Note that in narrative play you need to control at least two territories before mustering your first hero.

Tree-power: A Kurnoth Huntmaster with Scythe, 2 Kurnoth Hunters with Greatbow and 2 Kurnoth Hunters with Greatsword

For the leaves!: Arch-Revenant, Branchwraith, 3 Tree-Revenants, 3 Spite-Revenants, 3 Dryads.

How to buy a Sylvaneth Warcry Warband

The Sylvaneth warband can be purchased from 3 boxes and 3 blisters.

But to get every single assembly option you may need to buy more than one of the same box.

Unless you already have an Age of Sigmar Sylvaneth warband, in that case you most likely already have everything you need.

The 3 blisters are:

  1. Druanti the Arch-Revenant (£22.5)
  2. The Branchwraith (£10)
  3. And the Branchwych (£15).

If you want an alternative model to the Branchwraith, Forgeworld has for Blood Bowl Willow Rosebark that would need little conversion to be perfect.

The Kurnoth Hunters box contains 3 models for 35£. You can assemble only one Huntmaster but with any variation of weapon.

A single box should be enough to give you any option for your Warcry warband, but if you want to use them in Age of Sigmar you will need all 3 models to have the same weapon profile or try and magnetize them.

The Tree-Revenant box (25£) provides you 5 models, and once you decided your leader (between the Scion and the Shadestalker), you can assemble the other 4 models however you prefer (Spites or Trees).

To be an Age of Sigmar valid unit however all 5 need to be of the same type.

The Dryads are available in a box of 16 for 25£ and you could decide any of them is your Nymph.

For 55£ if you are starting at the same time an Age of Sigmar army you can get the same 16 Dryads, a Branchwych and a centrepiece like a Treelord Ancient in the Start Collecting! box. 

You can also read more about the Sylvaneth Start Collecting Box here.

However, for Warcry purposes, this box does not offer much value.

For alternative models you can find 3 Tree-Revenants (although one armed with a bow) in the Warhammer Underworld warband Ylthari’s Guardians for 15£.

Tips on painting a Sylvaneth Warband for Warcry

Do you have an awesome looking Sylvaneth Warband?

I would very much like to display them right here on this page.

All you have to do is send my some files. You can read more about how to make that happen here.

The Sylvaneth have been around since the Old World (most models were part of the Wood Elves range), therefore there are multiple and old guides like these for Dryads and Tree-Revenants.

Warhammer TV recently revamped these using the new Contrast paint range or the classic method, or for the Ylthari miniatures.

As many armies in Age of Sigmar, you can of course use your own theme or colour scheme like this winter theme from the Warhammer Community.

There’s many more guides online from other painters like this one for Kurnoth Hunters or this for Tree-Revenants.