Help with Northern Alliance (1500)

New player here, building a list to use against my sons (Abyssal Dwarfs and Undead). The AD will turtle and shoot as much as possible, while the Undead will plow straight forward and try to overwhelm. I want something with some staying power/regen, hence the Naiads and Trolls. Snow Foxes as chaff, Lord on Frostfang to look for flanks, Ice Queen to back up Naiads. No subtlety, just close quickly and start pounding away. I played WHFB years ago but haven’t built an army in ages, so any guidance is appreciated. From what I’ve seen online (and in our playtest battles), frostfangs would take out a unit but then get overwhelmed and not kill their points value, so I’m staying away from them.

I plan to use the troll/elemental combo to go straight in and start killing, while the naiads anvil away and buy time. Dwarfs look for opportunistic objective captures or flanks.

++ [3E Primary, 1500+ Roster pts] ((Good) Northern Alliance) [21 US, 1,500 pts] ++

+ INF +

Dwarf Clansmen (10) Troop [1 US, 75 pts]

Dwarf Clansmen (20) Regiment [3 US, 115 pts]

Ice Naiads (20) Regiment [3 US, 140 pts]

Ice Naiads (20) Regiment [3 US, 140 pts]

+ SWA +

Snow Foxes* (03) Regiment [1 US, 80 pts]


Ice Elementals (06) Horde [3 US, 240 pts]


Snow Trolls (06) Horde [3 US, 220 pts]

Snow Trolls (06) Horde [3 US, 220 pts]


Ice-Queen [80 pts]: Icy Breath (10)

Lord on Frostfang [1 US, 190 pts]

++ Total: [21 US, 1,500 pts] ++

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I would take the naiads in a horde, to get the most out of their regen.
You want more inspiring, ideally all your units are always inspired (very much an plan that does not survive contact with the enemy :sweat_smile:). Two dedicated sources should do (your Lord on frostfang will he off doing things); three for 2000+ points.


Would echo the comment about the naiads - a horde is a pain to shift.

You are a touch short on inspiring - the queen only helps the elementals, while the lord may be off wrecking face.

The easiest solution (and the one requiring the least tweaking) is to give her the inspiring talisman with the points saved when merging the ensnarers.

I’d also look to get heal rather than icy breath - that way your regen heavy centre really doesn’t die - think points just cover that?

I played against Northern Alliance yesterday and my enemy took the following list:

(The thane got inspiring due to a campaign rule, else one might need the inspiring talisman)

This list focusses mainly on power over subtlety, for 1,500 points it’s got a lot of oomph. The two fast cavalry units with melee 3+ and TC, supported by Clarion really can put some pressure on the flanks. The center with two hordes of clansmen, thane, snow trolls and a giant is lot of def 5+ to chew through. On top of that, everything here has Crushing Strength of at least 1.

If I were to play this list, I’d probably swap out one horde of clansmen for a regiment of huscarls. ( I need the hitting power more than another def 5+/nerve 21/23 roadblock) . This gives me 5 points for a blade of slashing on the huscarls.

If not playing the campaign, I need the inspiring talisman on the thane, so I’d swap out the giant for a cavern dweller to find those 20 points.


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I think you could give the Naiad regiments a shot and see how they do. They’re no horde but they can be pretty competent as mini-tarpits, and I’m generally attracted to more units to move around over all hordes all the time.

My recommended changes:

  • Swap Dwarf troop to second Snow Fox regiment
    Dedicated chaff pieces are huge and Foxes are among the best chaff, while the Dwarfs aren’t going to be able to chaff for the heavy hitters because slow.

  • Swap Ice Queen to Skald w/ Tome of Darkness
    As mentioned, you need a second true inspiring source, plus the Queen is doing very little for the army, with such a short range offensive spell. While the Skald largely just inspires the boys, he can also toss enough surge out to allow the Elementals to grab a 1" flank or spin around and touch somebody jumping your line or most likely perform the classic Shoot N Charge that Ice Elementals bank on. Or just keep up with the rest of the fast things and add a couple inches to their tasty shooting.

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Thanks for all the advice. You guys are the best. Reworked list:

Snow Foxes* (Regiment) 80
Ice Elementals (Horde) 240
Snow Trolls (Horde) 220
Snow Trolls (Horde) 220
Lord on Frostfang 190
Ice Naiads (Horde) 230
Snow Foxes* (Regiment) 80
Skald 55

  • Tome of Darkness 20
    Ice-Queen 80
  • Inspiring Talisman 20
  • Heal (5) 35

Total Unit Strength: 16
Total Units: 9
Target Points: 1500
Core (Target%): 1470 (98.0%)

More inspiring with Ice Queen and Skald. Switched Naiads to Horde for maximum regen bonus. Are the Trolls plus lord on Frostfang enough of a hammer?

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List 2 is looking good, proper anvil with the Naiad horde. If the Queen is staying in the list, I’d recommend swapping her icy breath (which she will rarely use) for that chunky surge (8), then dropping the Tome from the Skald. As I always try to give my army standards something to do, you could toss Lute or Boomstick or Zephyr Crown (!) onto the Skald instead. I’d also love a snow fox for the Frostlord, rev up that blender!

EDIT: Also folks will recommend the Hammer for the Naiad horde, and given that you know your opponents (AD + Undead having a lot of Def5+), it’s probably a good choice. If you do take Lute on the Skald, I’d suggest passing on the Hammer, as you can do better than 4+ thanks to hills and bane chant … however I’d probably favor the Boomstick myself for chaff clearing, etc.

EDIT2: Me again, with another thought. If you really want to chip some teeth, the list has the points to swap the Queen over to a Thegn on Frostfang w/ Inspiring Talisman, give the Hammer to the Naiads, and leave the Skald w/ Tome of Darkness. Frosthegn are stupid good, and can fill a variety of roles, from babysitting early game, to ranging down a flank, to rampaging into a flank, to glowering in a quarter / on a point to claim it, to just breaking faces. It’s less grind-oriented than the Queen’s Heal (5), but certainly punchier.

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