When I began looking at running Daughters of Khaine it was a few months before the Battletome surprised us all. I was looking at running a large number of Witch Aelves and when the Battletome dropped I just kept on going with that concept! My first real list, as you might have seen on the Tactica article on the Warhammer Community Site after release, involved ninety Witch Aelves. I took that list to Adepticon 2018 and really enjoyed it.
This list has been the goal all along, even before I realized it. The truest form of the Witch Horde in my opinion with a total of One Hundred and Eighty Witch Aelves and a Hag Queen to accompany each unit. The list won’t make you any friends, but owning and painting that many Witch Aelves will earn some respect…or a one way trip the insane asylum…
The Daughters of Khaine allegiance abilities are the icing on the cake and they continually make your army better and better as each round gives you a stacking ability to reroll various things during play. That is a very good thing as you will lose models along the way and the allegiance abilities will buff your remaining forces to punch above their weight limit.
The list uses Hagg Nar which improves the armies “Zealot’s Rage” ability greatly. Usually, by turn three this ability will allow you to reroll all hit rolls of one, but since the list Hagg Nar we will be able to reroll all failed hit rolls. When we combine this with the Hag Queens Witch Brew that allows units under its effect (The Witch Aelves) to reroll failed wound rolls. By turn three you will have the blender on full speed.
I also want to note that I traditionally run my Daughters of Khaine using the Temple Kraith. I love the tension that happens after every one of my units finishes combat and I get to roll a dice to see if I pile in and attack with them again on a 6+. The temple also changes a few other bits that are easily workable and in fact would be considered the opposite of Hagg Nar which is more defensive with its traits.
Artefacts, Command Traits & Abilities
As mentioned in the Allegiance Ability Section being from Hagg Nar will allow us to reroll all failed to hit rolls by turn three due to the army allegiance abilities. This temple also forces us to use its specific Command Trait “Devoted Disciples”. By force, I mean gift as it allows units within 7” of the general to negate wound son a 5+ instead of a 6+ with the fanatical faith ability. Normally fanatical faith means any wounds or mortal wound suffered can be saved on a lucky dice roll, but increasing it by one is a nice bonus considering the Witch Aelves only have a 6+ armor save (5+ with Bladed Bucklers).
As for the items there is really only one option I like within the book and that is Iron Circlet as it more or less will guarantee me to get one whatever prayer I put on the Hag Queen that has it, which in this list is the General who has Blessing of Khaine to allow us to reroll that fanatical faith save.
Hag Queens, Hag Queens everywhere…
I truly believe you cannot take a unit of thirty Witch Aelves without a Hag Queen to give them Witch Brew. The ability to ignore Battleshock and grant reroll to wound is immense. Not to mention having a Hag Queen Near the unit also grants them an additional attack!
Since we have six units of Witch Aelves we need six Hag Queens to walk with them, but keep the Hag Queens out of combat as you need them to keep giving Witch Brew. Thankfully we have six prayers as well so giving every Hag Queen their own prayer. You could simply put the prayer on the unit the Hag Queen is following, but with some careful movement you can buff up a single unit to great effect with a few prayers.
As stated in the Artefact section I gave the General Hag Queen the Iron Circlet and Blessing of Khaine. I also pair her with the unit of Witch Aelves with the Bladed Bucklers to create a scary, that is more survivable.
You thought there was a lot of Hag Queens…wait until you see these Witch Aelves!
There is nothing fancy other than taking a single unit with Bladed Bucklers to put Blessing of Khaine on to be a scary objective holder. The Witch Aelves can run and charge so always run them even if you don’t use the entire distance you rolled. Don’t forget with your Allegiance Ability you will be rerolling run rolls of 1 on the very first turn and rerolling dice rolls of 1 on charges by the second turn.
Witch Aelves are on 25mm bases so getting multiple ranks into combat is very easy. The unit also has a standard 2 attacks, +1 if they have paired knives, and an additional +1 if they are near one of their Heros and you will have a Hero near them at all times. So while you have one unit of Witch Aelves with only 3 attacks as they have Bladed Bucklers the other five units have the potential of 121 attacks if they all get into combat. traditionally is unlikely, but even a third to half of this is more than enough to take off whatever they are fighting. The Witch Aelves really are just weight of dice above all else and the more dice you make your opponent roll the more likely it is they will fail some saves.
Considering each unit will have Witch Brew they are immune to Battleshock as well as rerolling their failed Wound rolls and don’t forget this list will have them rerolling failed hits as well due to Hagg Nar Temple Ability. Buff the units as you see fit with your prayers by either stacking them up or balancing it across a few units based on the situation. Keep in mind to always keep your unit within 3” of the Hag Queen following them to keep Witch Brew up throughout the entire game. This will usually mean leaving a small tail off the unit back to the Hag Queen until she can move up in the following movement phase.
No room for Battalions so get used to letting your opponent decide who goes first. If they give it to you try not to smile too much as you instantly make your army immune to Battleshock.
Use the army to easily control the board with its size, but don’t be upset as you begin removing Witch Aelves by the handful. The remaining Witch Aelves will be more than enough to kill off most things they will face and let’s not forget you have six units of them. You can deploy on the line or be a bit more defensive and let your enemy make the mistake of coming to you based on the scenario. The army is simple and direct to the point. Practice deploying with speed and precision. Move as cleanly as you can (I skip movement trays as I feel they limit you more than help) and most importantly practice rolling handfuls of dice that your Witch Aelves will require of you. Learn to quickly spot the failed hits and wounds (needing to be rerolled) and find the best way to keep it clean, quick, and clear. Rolling all those dice is what will slow you down the most with this list.
After you finish deploying your army shake your opponent’s hand and simply ask…
“…Ready For It?”
If they are not simply Shake It Off.