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odinsgrandson

Looking into this game

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Cavalry works well in the game IMO, but you need to coordinate the charge with other models. I've seen a player get frustrated when his unit of knights didn't break the unit they charged (a unit with 3 times the number of models and also worth more points). It's all about expectations. 3 knights charging in alone will not make a unit with 10 models break. Charge in with 3 knights and coordinate this with the rest of your force and it gets nasty.

 

Cavalry are expensive models, and like all expensive models they take a little skill to use. If you charge them "solo" into a large unit then the unit will simply absorb the damage and mob the cavalry in the next activation. So timing is important.

 

Don't charge a unit that hasn't activated yet and preferably have support units ready to follow up after the initial charge

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Not having played a real game yet, I've wondered if cavalry charges are as dangerous as they historically seem to be. Reading through the rules and data cards seems to indicate that they are not in this game.

 

 

Yes and no. Most of the cavalry in the Warlord isn't heavy cav. The "devastating charges" that you're thinking about didn't really begin to take place until knights were put into the field, and there aren't many of those in the game.

 

That said, the few truly heavy cav units in the game - the Crusader's Lion Lancers - are devastating on the charge. With first strike, shock, high MAV, high DV, good mobility, and lots of attacks, they dish out damage on a charge very nicely. 'Course, at 100 points a pop, you're going to be able to field a lot of footmen against them, which is pretty historically accurate, too...

 

Most of the cav in Warlord is the historical equivalent light cav - stuff more similar to what the Greeks and Romans used, and best suited to the types of activities that the Greeks and Romans used their cav for... scouting, picking off isolated units, and finishing off stuff that the heavy infantry has pretty well broken.

 

 

Do the rules support some or any of the historical tactics?

 

 

If you're considering historical tactics used in fights other than large scale battles, Warlord does a pretty reasonable job. This is not a game of large armies. You won't often see a true phalanx or pike square. But remember that you're typically playing a game with only 30 soldiers. A phalanx or pike square doesn't make much sense when it's only a few dozen guys going at it. A sheild wall supported by spearmen with some missile troops behind and a good leader does work very nicely, though.

 

 

Do pikemen (or anything with Reach) have any effect on charging attackers?

 

 

The rule you're looking for is "First Strike". Most models armed with polearms get it. And yes, it does have quite a nice effect on charging attackers.

 

 

-StV.

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If you mention some games you play already, we could give you some comparisons.

 

Ok, I have been playing miniatures games for quite some time, and I am familiar with many different game systems.

 

 

I've played the very big games.

 

Warhammer 40,000 - 2nd, 3rd and 4th editions, although I haven't touch the game in a few years since GW has been spreading the hatred towards their fan-base, and other games have become more playable. Necromunda was a better version of the game.

 

Warhammer Fantasy - I played a little 5th edition, but the game was so poorly balanced that I haven't touched that game in more than ten years. Mordheim was a better version of this game.

 

Warmachine/Hordes - This game is my current favorite. It is small scale, and I find it is well balanced (although a better player can demolish his opponent quite handily) and I really like the synergistic style the game uses. I especially love the co-dependent relationships that Warlocks have with Warbeasts.

 

Confrontation- I dabbled a little, but since Rackham is moving to Pre-Painted plastics, I won't be getting aboard.

 

Blood Bowl- Easily the best game GW has ever released. It was very well balanced (except where it was

 

'Classic' Battletech- I played this long before the "classic" got added on. The game played too slowly for larger fights, and they changed their point-value system three times on me, Protomechs were terrible. I haven't looked into the new incarnation of the game though.

 

 

I've made a point to become familiar with Wargods of Aegyptus and Infinity, but there aren't enough players here for me to get into either game. I also looked at the Lord of the Rings rulebook and decided the game wasn't for me.

 

 

 

I would like to know a little more about the game mechanics and how they interact. I don't really care about historical accuracy. It sounds like Warlord uses a similar initiative system to Confrontation, so that could be cool. Also, I've noticed that most Warlord minis have proper names. Can you play a force of 8-10 uberheroes against a tide of enemies?

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I don't know the confrontation init system so I'll just describe the Warlord system.

 

Initiative is handled with an iniyiative deck with one card per unit in each army. If you draw one of your cards you get to activate one of your units. Cards are not tied to specific units and units can only be activated once per turn. Also it is possible to get extra initiative cards through magic items and special abilities.

 

About uberheros vs horde. It can kinda be done. The way the composition rules work you are forced to bring along a few "adepts" though (adepts are high end soldier models), ofcourse a lot of adepts I'd classify as uberheros. The horde army is very doable too. Many armies have cheap leaders and cheap grunts (low end soldiers).

 

So you could have a Crusader army with less than 10 very expensive models fighting an army with 30-40 models that are cheaper.

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Can you play a force of 8-10 uberheroes against a tide of enemies?

 

I think you could field 1000 points of warlord + heroes + a solo + gear & spells, but I wouldn't recommend it. You need a higher model count to really get the benefits of combined arms.

 

-StV.

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I am a rules junkie.

 

I play easily a half dozen miniatures games, and have played probably a dozen more, and have read the rules in detail for many more than that. I love analyzing rules finding out why things work a certain way and what effect that has on the game. I like tearing systems apart and rebuilding them to be better. I've done some work for several gaming companies as a rules developer on some high profile projects, just for fun. I have house rules for pretty much every system I play after only a few times playing them. When other people familiar with a game play by my house rules, they pretty much universally agree that they are big improvements on the game.

 

I say all this so that you will understand me clearly when I say Warlord is a game with a very cogent and well balanced rule system. There are minor tweaks here and there I would suggest to the game but - I have not felt the need to implement ANY houserules with Warlord.

 

As fantasy skirmish games go, its the best I've seen, hands down.

 

It rewards tactical play, the units are well balanced, there are lots of options, and you can freely combat large, powerful creatures with lots of small "horde-style" creatures with neither side having an extremely large advantage over the other. This system works.

 

Best of all, its really fun to play! Unlike many systems you stay involved in the game throughout the turn. Its exciting and fast paced - unlike many other fantasy skirmish and army games I've played that either have extremely stripped down rules that remove tactical decision making as a valuable skill, or overly burdonsome/slow paced rule sets that make the game drag out. You can play a decent sized game of warlord in an hour. You can play a really big game with multiple players on each side in about two and a half.

 

If you like fantasy skirmish games, you owe it to yourself to check out Warlord.

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I am also a rules junkie, and I bet you can be more specific than that. So, I'll start hammering out more specific questions.

 

Is Warlord a 1d6 game with lots of rolls to even it out? A 2d6 game with a bell curve? What kind of choices will give one player the advantage over the other? What does the system favor or force you to do to win? What kind of armies do the rules favor?

 

 

 

Ok, the initiative deck seems like a nice replacement for the I go You go rules we often see, but it keeps it also gives a much larger advantage to forces with lots of activations against fewer activations- the horde force will have more cards in the deck, and therefore a greater chance that key units will be able to act before your opponent. But this can change quite a bit if going first is a disadvantage (like old Battletech) or if going first can sometimes be good and sometimes be bad (ultimately, it depends on how often these things happen).

 

Just so that people know what I was thinking, Confrontation uses (or used) a system where each player assembles his own deck with every card corresponding to a unit. After that each one draws a card in turn and moves the unit on the card. Sometimes it is better to move first, but more often it is better to see what your opponent does first. The game suffers from some disadvantages, but I have only dabbled a little before the announcement that Rackham will discontinue all of their beautiful miniatures in favor of ugly pre-painted plastics.

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/snip/

 

Is Warlord a 1d6 game with lots of rolls to even it out? A 2d6 game with a bell curve? What kind of choices will give one player the advantage over the other? What does the system favor or force you to do to win? What kind of armies do the rules favor?

 

/snip/

Warlord uses d10's not d6's . A natural "10" always hits and if the totals add up that one needs to roll a "1" or less , its an "Auto hit" . Also if the number to hit is greater than 10 a natural "10" will still hit , got it . :rock: As for armies , it rock,paper ,scissors . Some are good at magic , some ranged attacks , some have lots of flyers , some have lots of cavalry , etc . But overall , I feel they are all pretty well balanced but in saying that some are better at combating certain faction and so-so against others . They all have their pluses and minuses , just choose your flavour .

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Essentially the game mechanics are roll a D10 add yours statistic and compare it to a target number, if you equal or beat the target you succeed.

 

In the Case of Attacks (ranged, melee, or Magic) you roll D10 for each attack you have, add your relevant statistic (Range attack value, Melee attack value, or Casting Power) and compare it to the models defensive value or magic defense value, if you equal or exceed that value the model takes a wound (or in the case of some spells is affected in some other way). No rolling to hit, then rolling to wound, then rolling an armor save, there is just one roll.

 

Nearly all models can take multiple points of damage (damage tracks) and with each damage track lost the models statistics drop making them less effective. If you haven't seen the datacards (statistci blocks) the models use I'd say its worth taking a look.

 

There are a series of Special abilites that models can have making them better suited to various roles, or more specialized in certain ways, and to reflect their role on the battlefield.

 

 

Its difficult to say what types of army build dominate, each faction has a certain feel that benefits you if you play to it (and army abilities that enhance them) but most armies can at least make an reasonable attempt to field just about any type of theme of build (mob, cavalry heavy, ranged attack, magic heavy) but I think the best builds generally include a little of everything and are quite balanced.

 

The biggest selling point for me about the game is that each indivifual troop (unit) you field can be comprised of several different model types that act together. So a unit will have a leader, but might also have an Elite (a hero of some type, possibly a spellcaster), and might include a few archers, a couple of spearmen, and some sword a shield warrior models. So you might Fire a spell into an enemy unit, follow up with some arrows shots, and then charge your softened up targets with your warrior models being supported by your spearmen.

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Is Warlord a 1d6 game with lots of rolls to even it out? A 2d6 game with a bell curve?

It's a 1d10 game, where models get 1 to 5 attacks (with 2-3 average), and have 1-8 wounds, (3-4 average). It's not quite the flat probability you'd expect from 1d10 due to multiple attacks and multiple wounds, but also your expected number of hits are less deterministic than a 2d6 game, so luck is slightly more of a factor.

 

For instance when I'm playing Warmahordes, I usually plan my turn, and have a good idea of how much damage I'll be doing to my opponent before I pick up and move the first model. Because of the initiative system, and less deterministic rolls in Warlord, I have to be more reactive to the situation, which as others have mentioned, makes it feel like a more interactive game. But on the down side, you don't get as many cool/crazy combos as you can pull off in Warmahordes, where you debuff a model to lower it's defense so you can slam it into some heavy infantry to prevent charges and get LoS to the support models in the back so you can arc some spells onto them which kills them *and* gives you soul tokens for next turn.

 

 

What kind of choices will give one player the advantage over the other?

It's somewhat rock/paper/scissors. You can go with all scissors and feel pretty good about yourself shredding paper, until you hit rock. It's best to have a good balance of all 3 in your list. Like most miniature games, the three correspond to melee, artillary (archers or magic), and speed/board control (cav, burrowers, fliers, clerics, and a ton of others). However if I were to compare an all melee, an all artillary, and an all speed army, I'd say all melee would be the strongest of the three (which I believe is quite intentional by design).

 

 

What does the system favor or force you to do to win? What kind of armies do the rules favor?

Different scenarios favor different compositions. If you are playing a loot scenario, you'll want a few tanks in your list, and a lot of cheap crunchy looters. If you are playing a scenario where you want to get to your opponent's deployment zone with fewest losses, you want a fast, sturdy list. If you are playing kill 'em all, you want a good balance like I mentioned earlier.

 

 

Ok, the initiative deck seems like a nice replacement for the I go You go rules we often see, but it keeps it also gives a much larger advantage to forces with lots of activations against fewer activations- the horde force will have more cards in the deck, and therefore a greater chance that key units will be able to act before your opponent. But this can change quite a bit if going first is a disadvantage (like old Battletech) or if going first can sometimes be good and sometimes be bad (ultimately, it depends on how often these things happen).

Lots of activations vs fewer activations is not as big an issue as you might think because of defensive strikes. There are ways to adjust your army composition by maximizing your defensive strikes, so even with fewer initiative cards, you are not giving your opponent much of an advantage. Sometimes it's better to hit your opponent hard with one big activation where you can utilize more support bonuses. Lots of activations mean smaller units, which may not have enough models (especially after a few die), to gain the much needed suport bonuses. You have to balance all these factors out.

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In regards to initiative advantage. It is pretty well balanced out by the Defensive Strike rule in Warlord. Having many initiative cards means the enemy will get that many more defensive strikes. I find that's just one more aspect of the game that works very well. That it's hard to decide on many weak units or few strong units when building an army is in my opinion an indicator that neither is overpowered.

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RE: the initiative card "penalty" for taking a small force made up of big heavy hitters:

 

If you're taking just a few big baddies, your leaders are more likely to have the tactician SA (which gives you one extra card, you can also buy tactician for any leader that doesn't already have it for 15 points IIRC) and some of your bigger guys are solos, which is an individual that is its own troop. With the horde lists, you might have 15 minis in a troop and only one card for them.

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Well a balanced force can be either big or small. The balance more comes into play in how you combine shooting, magic and melee troops. Since magic is resolved simultaniously for each type of combat it pays to mix. You can build a "three stage rocket" for instance where a successful magic attack wounds the enemy lowers his DV. Which the archers then exploit to wound the model further lowering the DV. Then the melee models charge in and finish the model at the much much lower DV. Had you just had all your points focused in one type of attack (for instance melee) then all models would have been attacking versus the high original DV, no matter how many you had.

 

Hope that made sense.

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