Tuesday, 16 June 2015

Age of Sigmar's Rumor.

So a wall of text of rumor popped up on the internet the past few hours, with loads of rumors on the next Fantasy Edition. Here is a break down, and what I think of it… (hey, a wall of text about a wall of text!, a Textception!)

- Title of the rulebook is: Age of Sigmar: a Warhammer strategy game
This is kinda weird to begin with. Ok, we knew that it was the name, but I’m just wondering, why bringing Sigmar back, again? Feels like we didn’t go to a new world, but just restarted the current one…

- full fledged rule system; no skirmish game - meaning not restricted to low miniature count: 50 models on average, way lower possible, in general you use units but you can field an army consisting of only single models
This sound like fun, as long as you’re not playing Skaven, or loved using large ranked units. MMU and MSU being king right now, I’m pretty sure most people won’t mind this. If an army of Ogres usually had less than 20 models, I’m very curious to see what it would look like with this edition (especially, I’d like to see if Ogres are even an army anymore).

- everything is on round or oval bases (there paragraph that explicitly allows legacy and diorama bases, though);
Kinda annoying. Rebasing my Warrior of Chaos army is gonna be painful, but I’m lucky, it’s the only army I have to rebase (dark elves are sold, and Daemon are already on round bases)

- there are unit cards for every (as far as I can see) old unit in the second book, including warhammer forge models and most or all special characters. Some units get the full treatment with a small fluff text, pictures of the actual miniatures and rules, some units get only rules with nothing more.
Warhammer forgeworld model with card is interesting. I’m looking forward to see Ork’s idol on the table. Card are also fun if they come with the models, since it allows you to get the card for your model without buying a White Dwarf.

- all new rules with complete new mechanics: think not of 40k 2nd -> 3rd but Warhammer 8th -> Bloodbowl, very compact and fast paced, huge emphasis on individual champions, magic and gods (don’t know how powerful, but these have the most rule pages)
This isn’t something negative. If it scales right, it pretty much means you can play any type of game you want with the rules…

- all the races are in, but some are clearly favored. There are few pictures of beastmen and lizardmen for example and some units like steamtanks, gunpowder units (Skaven and new-dwarfs use them still), etc. can only be fielded as mercenaries from a different world or summoned units (in case of most special characters, there is even a picture of a Teclis painted in ghost colors)
Ghost teclis? I’m in. From this, the only important tidbits is lizard are not dead!

- the tech level is between and ancient roman empire and early medieval times, lots of nomadic barbarian tribes, etc. But judging by to the age of sigmar miniatures the armour design draws only a little bit from history and is has a very stylized high-fantasy design instead
This could mean a lot less guns… which could mean less cannon,which could mean more character on monster. Cool!

- there are lots of different people, races, gods and lots of different alliances. The world is a lot more open minded than the old one, Empire-Orc Alliance would be unthinkable, but a human-waaghkin force is nothing unusual in this setting
Basically, its like 40k, where Dark Eldar can ally with Eldar… I’m somewhat okay with that. You can always tweak your army fluff to make it fit…

Army building
- you pick one or more gods that determine the theurgic or magic schools (don’t know what the difference is, sorry) you can use and how your champions get power-ups during the game. You can take several gods, but they have to be from the same pantheon - so no nurgle-sigmar armies, but Nagash-Morr is possible.Then you choose whichever unit you want - from every race. There is no limit as far as I can tell.
That is so weird, I don’t know what to think of it… I guess instead of choosing an army, you pick a god… same difference.

- The only mechanic that I have spotted that limits the useful choices somehow is that most spells and special rules only affect units with certain traits, the powers of Grimgor (magic and gods are always connected, each lore has a patron god that grants the power) affects only mortals or enemy units in the proximity of mortals.
Sound like the daemon heroes on their mount (you know, that thing you can build with the Skull Cannon kit…). From the sound of it, you can also have pretty much anything you want, but your Chaos sorcerer wont be able to buff your human units…. Seems fair.

- There are only rules for one pantheon in the rule book, all the other gods and pantheons are only mentioned in the fluff
Please, don’t make it a money grab for GW, where your codex will be new pantheon god, allowing you to get different formation (like they  are doing with 40k…)

- Guardians of Regalia, a conglomerate native spirits and gods and lately some new gods, the incarnates Grimgor, Gelt and Nagash, there are thousand of gods and their relevance changes over time and in different regions, but there are seven big gods that have seven schools of magic associated with them and have rules in the book
So all lore are still there, which is okay, as long as 6th spell are fine tuned.

- Geshemet or Gesheket or something like this (male and female, fertility, natural disaster) is the head of the pantheon, the other six gods are dual pair of good and evil:
two death gods: Nagahs and Morr
two smith and labour gods: Hashut and Gelt
two war gods: Grimgor and Myrmidia
Completely new lore with names we recognize… I guess grimgor just couldn’t disappear…

- five other pantheon get a page of fluff each, and additional minor pantheons/deities are mentioned in the fluff. The big five are Chaos, Sigmar, Cuth’adai (elven gods), Exoatl (old ones) and the triumvi-rats (Horned Rat + 2 more)
So this make 6 “big” god, which is pretty much the number of “army” we heard since the beginning of the rumors.

- all characters can earn favor of their gods and get promoted just like the chaos champions until they reach apotheosis, this is also a huge mechanic in the game + you can field gods or at least their avatars, but only three incarnates have rules in the book
Some kind of XP mechanism within a game? Depending how strong it is, it could even work to make a mordheim style of game…

- there is only one ruleset (don’t know what is in the AoS box, but in the book there is no distinction between skirmish mode and battle mode or something like this)
That is good. No matter the size, the rules stay the same. Less stuff to learn, less chance to screw up.

- rules have nothing to do with the old warhammer rules,
Some people won’t like it. Personally, I think it’s great! The more difference there is, the less chance you have to mistaken edition (how many time in a game you had to discuss a rule because someone was referring to 7th edition?)

- profile is: Melee, Range, Might, Armour, Initiative, Resolve, Wounds, values from 1-6, lower is better
That’s… interesting. I believe that’s pretty much how Wild West Exodus works…

- simple turn sequence: initiative -> player 1 unit 1 moves, shoots, casts -> p1 unit 2 moves, shoots, casts -> ... -> player 2 moves, shoots, casts -> melee
With token, this won’t cause any problem. Curious to see how 2 unit charging one unit will be dealt with tho….
- players roll always against each other, for example Melee vs Initiative and Range vs Initiative, Might vs Armour
Not sure how this is different … except that initiative seems to be a stats to be hit less… which make sense.. you’re not quicker to strike first, you’re quicker to evade being hit….
- units regenerate all lost wounds at the end of the phase
So regen is now like Hydra Regen. Great! But, in case of unit with wardsave and regen… this means they get some defense (wardsave) then can regen lost wounds (regen) ? this could make regen invaluable for multi wounds models.
- both sides in a melee fight simultaneously, winner can roll to fight instantaneously another round until one side is extinct or one side chooses to break from the combat
The important word : Choose… you can decide to flee, or stick for another round. Going simultaneously make sense, at least to me.

- there is no moral system or combat resolution whatsoever, but unit can be bounced back
Not sure I understand…

- units use a 1” 40k formation without any facing
I think that’s pretty much what skirmish means….

- magic spells are all one-use only, when you use it, you have to discard the card
That. Is. AWESOME! Don’t even think about purple sun every turn on 6 dice. Obviously, magic phase will most likely be completely different, but I’m sure its for the best.

- you can collect ascension points throughout the game and spend the point to buff your champions, mechanic depends on your god(s)
This one is weird. If anything in these rumors are not true, I’d believe it to be this. But I do hope its true, since its nothing we see in other wargames that I know of.

- unit costs points as before, you are not allowed to field multiple units of the same kind unless the former unit have full strength - there are all kinds of unit sizes from 1-3 to 3-15 (that’s the highest I have seen), but you can field lots of different 1-man units
No more 3 units of 1 beasts of nurgle? Count me in!

- you don’t buy champions, a set number of models are automatically upgraded to champions, but you cannot exceed the limit
I do believe this is like 40k. Make sense.

- there are rules for different weapons, magic items, war engines, monsters, special rules, etc and a large section for scenarios and terrain, larger than the actual rules
More scenario is just cake. The current 6 one get old quick (especially since nobody want to play watchtower)

game is set on world Regalia that is connected with other young realms through portals of the old ones. Young realms are realms that were populated by the old creators and were guided on similar historical paths. They were untouched by chaos but this has changed since the arrival of sigmar (as a new faith) and archaon (as an actual emissary in flesh and blood) there is no explanation (or just a brief one so that I have missed it) how this all came to be, just a description of the history of Regalia (and to a lesser extent some neighbouring realms) On Regalia is dominated by hundreds of human kingdoms. Fast travel is possible through a number of stone circles that allows mages to open portal from one to another and a system of streams and seas under the earth that can be navigated by ship. There were a long period of peace curated by the Exoatl (Old Ones) that watched over the world from the North and Southpole. But then suddenly new faiths arrived, lots of human tribes started to pray to Sigmar and to conquer their neighbouring kingdoms. These lands are each independent, but are united in their faith to Sigmar. The history ends with the conquering of the Worlds Edge mountains and the crowning of the first emperor. At the same time, the first agents of Chaos arrived and began to corrupt the native people. A part of the Waaghkins rebelled against the old ones in favour of new gods, the Skaven arrived the first time, and in the south and east a death cult began to spread. The world is in turmoil. There are lots of unfinished story hooks so I think the story will be continued, but that might be wishful thinking.
Young realm, or reboot of the old one we knew and loved? I’m open to new fluff, its much better to reboot the entire history rather than see someone like Matt Ward completely scrap the fluff for an army, just because he want to.

humans are the majority in this world and they have kingdom and tribes everywhere, most of the known earth-inspired regions like cathay are there, but they are not described as fully flegded feudal nations but constantly changing petty empires and nomadic people ruled by warlords and champions of the gods. there are two factions of humans, the worshippers of sigmar and the polytheistic rest, both are not monocultural, but have different skin colors and cultures. Women fight beside men!
Women. That is great. If it can attract new player this way, I’m up for that.

The dominion of sigmar is special, because they are the only ones that are reluctant to allow any other race than humans. They have only one god and their goal is to destroy all other gods and conquer their domains - for the greater good of the world of course. This has nothing in common with the Empire of the old world, except the heraldry, griffons are still en vogue. All tribes and city states and kingdoms are independent, the only common ground is their faith, the emperor is only a warlord with the purpose to expands the dominion towards the east. There a still knightly orders, zealots, witchhunters - so they retain some of their medieval flair but there are no state troops. There is no gunpowder, except from some dwarven imports, but they are known for using large warwaggons on their trek to the east. Kislec, Estalia, Araby, city states of Bretonnia, Norse and tribes of the Reiklands are part of the dominion. There are also some enclaves scattered across the world that are connected with magic portals
No gunpower. i hope its not true and steampunk will be used instead.

The Skaven arrived on their own on Regalia and are basically the same. Haven’t spent much time on them. They have now three gods called the triumvi-rat ….. Dawikorr (dwarfs) and Inneadim (elfs) have their own realms that are connected with Regalia. The Inneadim have outposts in America. Dawikorr are only a legend on Regalia and nobody has seen them, but there are legends that they aid whorshippers of Sigmar in peril. They deliver the dominions of Sigmar with artifacts. They live underneath the world Karak Korr and guard the Soul Mill. Dawikorr have rules, so they can be fielded.
Dawikorr sound weird. But if they change the name to move away from the standard fantasy, I wont mind at all. It wont change much for people (after all, Ogres Bulls are still bulls, even if they’re supposed to be called just Ogre now)

The Soul Mill is a huge machinery that allows minor deities to feed on the power of dead spirits or let them reincarnate or serve them as guardian hosts. It was built by the surviving dwarves of the old world on command of the Incarnates on a older machinery of the old ones. The dwarfs guard the soul mill and are aligned with Sigmar after the shattering of the Incarnates, but are under siege of the skaven that have found their way on this world and managed to steal two mighty souls that formed their new gods.

Inneadim whorship the dreamers, gods that have dreamt themselves, basically the elven gods. They live on their own world and protect the dreamchild. Under Araloth they founded enclaves on Regalia in search for the archelves, lost gods of their pantheon. They are a darker take on the elves, nightmare are as much part of their culture then dreams. They use necromancy and the death god Ynnead is at the centre of their pantheon. But they still live in symbiosis with the nature. The artwork shows an elf on a feathered mount, not like a chocobo, but more like a feathered raptor. the artbook shows pictures (and rules) from all existing elf armies.

Skaven and Dawikorr are the only races that use blackpowder, the rest of Regalia is on stuck on an ancient/medieval tech level. The Exoatl use magic techno gear. There is a certain level of anachronistic gear but it is not steampunk but powered by ancient magic. The only steampunk elements are in the Skaven and to a lesser extent the neo-dwarven fluff.

Chaos has no foothold in the north but is anywhere and consists of corrupted tribes and companies from every region of the world. The barbarian theme of the nomadic tribes is more associated with khorne than with chaos as a whole. Beastmen and demons are likely part of their faction because they are described in the same chapter (both in the fluff and unit cards), but demons can be summoned by everyone, so I don’t know for sure. And beastmen have very few pictures, so that’s a bad omen.
Fluff… and the rest, which is pretty much reheated stuff we heard before ;

Waaghkins: orcs, goblins and are the servants of the old gods and live in a strict caste system, orcs are the manual laborers. There is a new race called nigmos: a tall and slender priest caste. Waaghkins travel the undersea, a system of flooded caverns that connects the whole world, on longboats and do the dirty work for the Exoatl. There is an artwork of the three different kinds of greenskins (no squigs and snotlings mentioned): an ork in very strange armour, very front heavy, textured like a symmetric turtle shell, he wields is an axe with multiple disc shape blades, goblin looked like a viking but has a futuristic looking handgun, the third was taller than a ork, female, slender - probably a nigmo. But in the photos of actual miniatures only show the old orc style. There is a subfaction of waaghkins that changed allegiance from the old gods to grimgor incarnate and are much more ferocious than their cousins.

undeads, deamons and spirits, and guardian hosts are used by every faction of the game, necromancy but not summoning is common in the dominion of Sigmar. The Inneadim are famous for their use of animated constructs. These things are not a big taboo in Regalia. However the most fearsome necromancers are (obviously) employed by the Empire of Nehekhara (which is not a desolate wasteland and has no egyptian vibe but is a rich and green country and feels more babylonian to me) and their death gods. But there is no Undead faction per se anymore. Vampires are called Necrarchs now.

Guardians hosts are troops that were granted by a god from another realm or the realm of the dead. They are living beings and have free will, but were brought to Regalia on the command of a deity.

- Lizardmen are not gone. There is a race called Servants of the Exoatl that guard the pole portals on flying pyramids, but no drawings and no fluff page (other races and tribess get at least half a page). They get unit cards for their old units (which confirms that they are simply lizardmen with a new name), but instead of beautiful pages with pictures like the rest of the bunch they get a simple list in the appendix of the compendium book.

Beastmen get the same lowkey treatment, but ogres get pictures and all, but I cannot say with which pantheon/faction they align. They are mortal, so you can use them in any the guardians of regalia army, but I don’t know if this is a stop gap solution or not.

Age of Sigmar box content:
Extrapolated from the pictures, they are the only new models. If you think you get 3-5 UNITS for each side, you are wrong. you get 10-15 (haven’t counted) CHARACTERS per side. Each model is really individual and it is in no way possible to field the majority of them as a visual coherent unit. It is late and this summary is long as it is, so I make this brief, but I will come back later and add some info on the miniatures. Chaos looks very similar to the old style except the berserkers, the Sigmarite Force is completely different.

Missionary Force:
3 Knights of the Order of Sigmars Blood, Roman looking armour but more bulky, leather Bands, swords and teardrop-shaped shields, champion is a woman
a pair of vigilantes: Male and female, leathercloaked, tricorn, 2 hand-crossbows
a hand full of heavy armoured warrior with different weapons and cloaks, almost knightly in appearance but completely over the top bulky, some have eagleshaped helmets
One hooded, chainmail wearing, hammer wielding girl
a bulldog
standard bearer: naked, chains that are hooked into the flesh, very archaic looking
one arabic looking guy with a two-handed scimitar and full armour
one guy in rags that wields a chain that burns at both ends, very impractical looking

Chaos Cult:
two outriders, basically chaos barbarians as we know them, but female
~5 berserkers: african looking, no armour, barefeet, clad in cloth stripes, two axes, bald and gaunt looking, not overly muscular, bone chain, both male and female
three pristesses: flowing robes, sacrifical ziggzagged daggers, skullmasks
two armoured harpies with spears and shields, crooked looking, feathered wings
at least five chaos warriors similar in appearance to the old chaos warriors, very dynamic fur cloaks and poses, one of them bigger on a larger base, all male as far as I could see
one large bloodletter, almost twice the size of a human
the leader has armour that looks like a chaos dwarfish, very babylonic, rides a demonwolf, a juggernaut, but with flesh and fur and spikes
some more viking-like infantry but with more chainmail
That’s only a broad description. Every model is highly individual.

Sorry for the chaotic nature of the info, I spent the evening writing this in a very fast manner. This is only the tip of the iceberg and I will come back with a little bit more soon - hopefully in a more ordered fashion. If you have a questions or need specifics and a topic, feel free to ask, maybe I remember something of use.

Friday, 6 March 2015

The Unsinkables WIP #30 : Finished!

So this is it. in 16 hours the tournament begin, and i can say that i'm 100% complete (ok, maybe 99%, but still close enough).

Sunday, 1 March 2015

The Unsinkables WIP #29 : Nearly Done!

Lack of post doesnt mean i didnt work on my army. I actually almost finished it. I also played a local 3 games tournament where i went 1-2 (49 pts out of a possible 90 i believe, and more important, roughly 15 pts from the top spot).

I once again realized that my list is pretty weak, but its okay, i have great looking models in that list.

Sunday, 15 February 2015

The Unsinkables WIP #28 : Presentation tray underway!

I've been working pretty much non stop since my army was completed on my presentation tray. I've been learning alot doing it (mainly that the skin on my fingers grow back pretty fast), and it been a really fun adventure. I'm close to finish and i think its time to show it.

Saturday, 7 February 2015

The Unsinkables WIP #27 : 2nd unit of Blightkings Finished!

Didn't post any picture of the WIP, since, well, its the damn same thing than the first unit, but they are still finished! They are pretty much exactly like the other, following the exact same recipe for everything.

Friday, 30 January 2015

The Unsinkables WIP #26 : Chimera Done!

In the past few days, i kind of lost motivation to paint 3-4 hours each night, so it was a real struggle to get anything done. But i still managed to finish another piece, the Chimera.

Sunday, 25 January 2015

The Unsinkables WIP #25 : Chariot, Warshrine and Chaos Lord Done!

Thist morning i put the last touches on my Warshrine, the chariot and the Chaos Lord. They are all stuck to their base, and ready to rock!

Thursday, 22 January 2015

The Unsinkables WIP #24 : Chariot, Warshrine and Chaos Lord advancement.

Despite the lack of update, i painted, quite alot actually. I'm almost done with another part of my army, with very little left to do before calling them done (i actually want them done for the weekend, so i can start on the next things).

So.... pictures!

Wednesday, 14 January 2015

The Unsinkables WIP #23 : WoC and Mage completely done!

It took a while, and struggle alot with choices, but they are finally done, all 30 warriors are completely done, and ready for play!

Of course, they still have small details to finish, like horn (still undecided, thinking about glossy black), and touch up on the cloak, but its things that can wait, and i'm moving on to the rest of the army, so for now... DONE!

Monday, 12 January 2015

The Unsinkables WIP #22 : Devil's in the details

An old saying about details ; they sucks.

I spent maybe 10+ hours doing details on the Warriors, and i still feel like i have tons left to do.... but it's advancing, and my mage is nearly done!

But before my picture galore, let me tell you about my first battle with my warriors.