Warmachine Coming Right Up
So I’m getting back into Warmahordes. Dusting off the Cryx and blowing the dust off the books. Warmachine has a lot to recommend it; not the least being that it isn’t made by GW. I’m going to go over some things I think are awesome about it, some things that aren’t and some things that are both.
Ok the price of this game compared to most other minis based games is pretty darn low. It’s not cheap, and some models/units are downright expensive (BANES!) but overall you can land more than a couple hundred bucks under a 40k army, let alone a fantasy battles army.
The Mechanics of this game are really neat. So much more of your strategy will happen on your side of the table. What order you activate units in, how you will set up your attacks, when to roll the dice and when to stand pat for a moment.
All offense, all the time. Models die fast and furious. You can delay it but you can’t prevent it. People who turtle suffer. I’ve seen people who are used to historicals, GW games, and a lot of other metas just get swallowed by a fast and aggressive Warmahordes player. My fiancee crunched my nemesis in her 2nd or 3rd game because he’s used to doing nothing on his first turn from other games, and he still won’t play the game because his favorite strategy is completely useless.
The models are gorgeous. Good lord these armies look fantastic. The “Recommended” paint schemes are bold, simple, and effective. You don’t have to be Mike or Allison McVey to make them look good.
The game is designed to be accessible. $50 gets you a battlebox with a ‘caster/warlock, some jacks/beasts and rules. That gets you a book in some other games. Rulebooks are handy, but not required, and rulebooks, army books, and expansion books, are very reasonably priced. Even with some minis being on the pricey side
NOT SO AWESOME
Rules Lawyering. This game follows a very nice meta, saying “Here’s some simple basic rules” then following it with “And here’s more enough special rules to choke an elephant” This is fine in and of itself, but it leads to lengthy errata, as rules have to be bounced off each other, and the very lethality of the game means that such minutiae as measuring, and proper rolling will need to be followed to the letter. This can really slow down the game, especially between new players, and in advanced games with death clocks… woof.
Knowledge is Power. Players need to know at least their own army like the back of their hands. It is very easy to fall badly behind an army you haven’t faced before and get trounced.
The Great Grey Horde. People build armies fast. The “I just need this and my army will be invincible!” feeling, combined with the moderate prices mean that every game shop and every gamer is faced by monolithic walls of grey or silver miniatures staring at him begging for paint. I spray mine black to shut them up.
Assembling some of these miniatures is so frustrating that it makes me want to sit on the floor, kick my heels and throw a tantrum. And I haven’t even bought Terminus yet. I’m not kidding either. Look here. Honestly it’s one of the worse models they’ve made from a pose AND from an assembly standpoint but he’s so incredibly powerful I want to use him, I just do NOT want to put that mess together.
THE AWESOMELY NOT-SO-AWESOME
Now for the bits of both.
There are models that are so not fun to play against they can make people rage quit the game. Without ever playing it. See War Witch Deneghra, and most of Cryx. Menoth and Everblight have this too. But only Cryx has it in their battlebox. That’s right, Privateer Press threw a rage-quit inducing miniature in the starter sets. The alternate box with Asphyxious is an improvement, but facing Cryx can be soul crushing, and that is the right term. The down sides of this is obvious, but on the plus side it inspires some gamers to say “well what does Cygnar have that will make people throw dice?”
The game can change so fast you have no idea what just happened. Seriously I’ve seen whole games change so fast that the player that won literally doesn’t know they’ve won. One lucky attack, one miss, one perfectly/poorly positioned mini and a game goes from a crushing defeat to a stunning victory. This is awesome as it keeps you playing even in a game that you don’t think you have a chance in, but it also makes you want to cry when your perfect attack run falls apart because you rolled a 3 to hit on a sure-fire attack.
All in all I really enjoy this game. Not everyone that plays it is a wonderful character and my last burnout was solely to do with people, not the game, time to toughen up and roll some dice again.