Games I Like – Warmachine MkII – Got to play a game!

So unless you’ve been living under a rock you might have heard that Privateer Press has decided to post up the complete Mark II version of their rules. Now there’s been lots of debate about the ramifications of this move and the motivations that preceded it, but I’m not really concerned about that. I’m just excited I get to dust off and play with toy soldiers I haven’t touched since 2007!

Now for the first time since April’s field test I got the opportunity to play a game!

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Kreoss and the Mighty Menites face off against Epic Skarre and her robo-zombies.

We played a 35pt game, roughly the equivalent of 500pts of the last edition.

My list consisted of…

-Grand Exemplar Kreoss
-Castigator
-Redeemer
-Revenger
-Minimum Choir
-Maximum Zealots with a Monolith Bearer
-Minimum Deliverers
-Dartan Vilmon
-Paladin of the Wall

This is a pretty common list that I used to use in the old days. I wanted to use an army I’d play with before just to see if this final draft of the new edition was any different! Looking through my cards I didn’t see anything too very different. Flying Steel was gone and my Castigator’s Combust rule now has a two inch range! Kreoss himself had much the same spell list and the same wonderful feat of knocking stuff down as in the original MkI game.

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Advance and burn the heretics!

One of the things I first noticed was that there’s a LOT less text and special rules in this edition. One of the things that had pushed me away from the game was that I just can’t keep up with too many rules. I’m a beer and pretzels guy. I like toy soldiers and an excuse to push my toy soldiers around… I can’t keep up with erratas and constantly growing model count-meta-games.

Having universal rules means there’s less overall to memorize. It’s just ‘Hey… he’s got that rule… I know what that does; so cool play on.’ It was the first thing that popped out at me.

The next were the point values. Abstracting points is an interesting method of game design. Some would criticize it and call it lazy as you do not have to create or maintain a ‘formula’ for model values; but because ‘value’ in a table top game is so subjective I’m inclined to think it’s just plain practical.

What really is the difference between an Ogrun Bokur and Dartan Vilmon? What’s the additional value that must be assigned to the bokur because he’s available to multiple factions each with their own ‘tricks’ and abilities?

To me it’s a question that really doesn’t have an answer and I’m perfectly happy with Privateer’s solution to this provided it make releases easier for them to produce and distribute quickly.

I’m also very happy that Epic models are no longer restricted except for their individuality. I have lots of epic figures but almost never used them because they were only allowed at a game size I very rarely played (750pts). Just categorizing them as ‘different’ makes these models much more common to use and will probably help with Privateer selling them!

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That’s right Epic Skarre… the choirmaster needs to talk to you.

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The Deliverers take position up on a hill.

Overall the game plays pretty much like Warmachine! I’d compare this to the launch of 5th edition of Warhammer 40,000. Not a lot of huge gameplay changes, more a streamlining of the individual rules and some changes to the composition of forces.

I think the biggest difference is actually in the army lists! Lots of models have had their rules tweaked and almost universally there are less numbers of rules per unit/model.

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Get ’em Zealots! They’re just girls!

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The Grand Exemplar is ready to party down. Chain Weapons negate shields and bucklers now!

A word of advice though; round out your units! If you see those 2 packs of grunt troopers lying around get any that you need as the buzz is that all unit boxes are being repacked as ten. I’ll need to get those two Temple Flameguard figures to make my eight man unit into ten… as there are no odd sizes anymore!

On a scale of one to ten (one being totally the same as the last edition and ten being totally different) I’d give this game a five. It plays pretty much the same as before… just with the models doing some different stuff! The meta-game seems to have shifted mostly in what the figures do as opposed to HOW they do stuff… which I’m fine with. I haven’t had to learn a new game; or even what my models do (not tons has changed in the Menoth list). Its mostly my oppponents!

When the books and cards come out for real I’ll probably give this game another chance. I’ve got piles of unpainted Menoth, Khador and Merc/Pirate stuff to work on… I just haven’t really been motivated to. It hasn’t really reinvented the wheel however… and I’m not freaking out to get ahead of the game and rework my armies now.

At least it gave me an excuse to play a game on my Realm of Battle gaming board. I’m sure there will be games played in my future.

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~ by Achilles on October 4, 2009.

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