Wednesday, 16 December 2015

House rules for Kings of War (Mantic 2010), part 2

In earlier posts I gave my thoughts about the Kings of War fantasy rules and proposed some potential house rules, which I said I would trial in solo games. Over the past few weeks I have played a number of games and can now give my verdict on the house rules suggested:

The main house rule attempted to introduce an element of Command and Control into the game in the form of a simple Warmaster/Black Powder mechanism. This worked OK in the sense that it was very quick and simple, and did not hinder the speed of game play. It was frustrating if you failed an early command roll, but this did make you think about prioritising your army’s actions. Strangely, I soon began to feel it did not add enough to the game to justify its inclusion, and in the last couple of games I dropped the mechanism with no real detriment to the game play. Therefore I think I will reject this house rule and play the rules as written.

One thing I did like about the Command and Control mechanism was the chance of blunders. This really worked when playing Goblins or Skaven, who I think should be erratic and insane. Therefore, I plan in future to convert the ‘Yellow Bellied’ rule to an ‘Insane’ rule: Whenever a specified unit moves (not just when charging), roll 1D6 and if score 1, then re-roll on the ‘Blunder’ table (as previously given in earlier post). This certainly won’t help Goblin armies win, but strangely I don’t mind losing with Goblins and I want an element of uncertainty and insanity when using such an army.

The ‘Halt at First Contact’ house rule did work well and was easy to implement. Removing the shuffling about from the game is a big plus for me, so I will keep using this rule.

The ‘Hordes’ rules were a mixed bag: reducing the unit frontage actually did not work that well and I quickly went back to the large double frontage of the original rules. I did like the move or pivot (not both) option for Hordes because it did limit their effectiveness. They cannot be used to cover flanks due to the imposed limited mobility, and have to be used in a central role. I think I will persist with this particular house rule for a few more games before coming to a firm decision.

The variable game length house rule worked in larger games (1500 points plus) and again is worth pursuing in future games. You cannot be sure how soon a game will end, and I much prefer this to the 6/7 turn game as written in the rulebook.
Overall, I think the rules as written continue to work well and therefore require no significant modifications. I plan to try larger armies by utilising my existing 10mm Warmaster forces, with a single element for a Troop, 2 bases for Regiments, and 3 bases for Hordes (Legions with 6 bases?).

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