zondag 28 oktober 2012

I'm going around in a Circle here - WarmaHordes issues

Or the big Warmahordes rant.  Okay, not that big.  Perhaps a little rant.  Or not even a rant, but more of a critique.

Well, the problem is this.  For years I have had a lot of Hordes models of the druids of the Circle Orboros.  I love the look of the models.  I like the fluff behind the whole game setting, it's better and more consistent then other brands, as the characters both die and / or evolve over the years.

And that they reflect this in the rules by bringing out epic or alternate versions of the models.  Sure, it's a marketing ploy to sell more models of the same caster, but your not OBLIGED to use the evolved versions, it's all in your hands wether you want to play version x or version s of a warcaster or warlock.

Okay, that doesn't sound to ranting yet now does it.

My issue is with the gameplay of the whole shabang.

I've been playing MkI and now MkII, and one thing is still the same.  No matter how big an army or played battles, the one who charges first wins almost by default.

The defensive stats are in my opinion way to easy to circumvent.  Knock Down and Stationary effects aren't as uncommon anymore as they used to be.  Basic troops can be boosted just a tat to easy to raise MAT or RAT.  The MkII line of sight rules are to simplistic making it to easy to pick out a warcaster or warlock amidst his force or in between a heap of scenery.

Same goes for ARM, you can punch through just a bit to easily as everything gets bigger and stronger with each expansion... but not tougher.

So this results in a game in which people are shuffling left or right a few inches to get their range over the opponents range and then charge in.  Heck, you can suicide bomber enemy models by sending in light beasts one at a time during several turns, as long as you can outrange the distance.  Whatever big beast your charging will die or stop to be effective, and your big guy is probably undergoing the same fate at the mean time.

This result usually in a face off between the leaders of the force, at best supported by the few ragged survivors of 'charge fest'.  Counting that you got Focus and Fury to bump and play around with rolls again... the charging caster wins 9 out of 10 times.  Botched rolls do not count as a game mechanic or a viable tactic, that is hust sheer (bad) luck.

I can only say this ain't fun gaming to be honest, and even though I dropped in the Journeyman League full of high spirits, I'm now doubting I'll ever finish painting off the rest of the models I have lying around, unless it is to drop them unto eBay or trade them for other models I need and like (read: Chaos Dwarfs).

I'm probably withdrawing as such; and the models in the gallery on this blog will probably end up 'sponsoring' another Myth cloth for my collection.

What to do about all that?  Well, I seem to have issues with two things, and they might be solved a little by what I think these things:

1. Return partly to the old versions of Line of Sight and having to test or otherwise target the closest model like in some other games would up the tactical shuffle over the board.

2. A kind of countermagic.  This would soften up the spelles as you now can cast around freely.  You'd be having to chose what spells to draw out and which to try and cast.  And I'm not talking irresistibles like in WFB, but something like you cast normally, and the other could counter in the same way for one.

Both are vague ideas, and can certainly be philosophed about further, but that is food for the game designers under us, these are just my feelings about the game, drawn from having played or read quite a few known and lesser known game systems during my wargaming 'career'.

Stuff to think about in the future and perhaps 'house rule'? 


2 opmerkingen:

  1. I can't really comment on this game as I've never played it. I do like the models though. Perhaps when playing amongst your gaming group you should add/remove rules you like to make it more balanced.

  2. I can definitely relate to what you're feeling.
    I haven't played much, but also notice that to be charged is usually a disaster, so once you get close to strike distance, the game settles into a 'dance' as both players position for a strike, while adjusting to deny it to the other- if you don't have the longer reach you're in big trouble.

    That said, even with decent enemy dice rolls I've had a bronzeback take a charge by an enemy heavy survive, and thrash him back. Skorne can layer some defense so that being alpha struck isn't the end. Circle doesn't seem like it has such options at least not as many.

    The lethality in this game is much higher than in most minis games. It can certainly be distressing to lose a vital creature without it ever getting a chance to defend itself. The combo mechanic of the game greatly favors offensive power over defensive options. I don't think you could change it without breaking the game- or creating a new one.

    The best option might be to use the minis you like in a game that suits your toe-to-toe style desire. Songs of Blades and Heroes would be a good option, or Saga... I've been thinking Saga would be a good game to re-skin for fantasy: big creatures, like a Warpwolf could be a unit of 4 elite warriors: one mini instead of 4, just give it 4 attacks & wounds, every wound (which would have removed a warrior) means it loses an attack as well.