A Song of Ice and Fire: Previews
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The call to war has been sounded, and on July 25 at 3:00pm EST, A Song of Ice and Fire: Tabletop Miniatures Game (ASOIF:TMG) from CMON and Dark Sword Miniatures, Inc, launches on Kickstarter. Based on the hit novels by George R.R. Martin, ASOIF:TMG will let fans experience their favorite characters and the world they live in like never before.
The War of the Five Kings began with the death of King Robert I in 298 AL. Westeros was plunged into chaos as different noble Houses, each with their own claim to the crown, fought to place their leader on the Iron Throne. Few families have more history and more reason to fight in the War of the Five Kings than the Starks and the Lannisters.
In the ASOIF:TMG Starter Set – Stark vs Lannister, players will take control of either House and fight for honor and glory on the battlefield. Each army can be assembled with different Combat and Non-Combat Units. The soldiers you put on the field will make a big difference in the strategies you can employ. However, behind-the-scenes tactical maneuverings and political subterfuge will play as big a role in the outcome of the war as any blades, armor, or arrows will.
Hailing from the North, the Starks use their speed and aggression in combat. They take the battle to the enemy where they can, secure in the knowledge that their cause is just. The Lannisters of Casterly Rock, rely on trickery and counter attacks, opting to wear down their opponents and destroy their morale. To win this war, a General needs to understand their army, compensate for their weaknesses, and take advantage of their strengths.
Leading up to the Kickstarter launch, we’ll continue to share more details of the Units, Tactics, and Scenarios. ASOIF:TMG is a collaboration of some of the most accomplished minds in the gaming industry today. Whether you’re a fan of the book series, or new to the land of Westeros, you will find yourself drawn in to this new miniatures game.
The conflict begins when A Song of Ice and Fire: Tabletop Miniatures Game launches on July 25 at 3:00pm EST, with more expansions featuring iconic material from the hit novels and organized play when the game arrives at retail in 2018. Answer the call to war, pick up arms, and prepare for battle. The calendar may say July, but winter is coming.
The War of the Five Kings has claimed a heavy toll on the people of Westeros. Many lives have been lost as the different Houses fight to place their commander on the Iron Throne. However, war also provides an opportunity for leaders to rise to the forefront of battle. Heroes are born and distinguish themselves through their bravery, resilience, and prowess. In A Song of Ice and Fire: Tabletop Miniatures Game (ASOIF:TMG), you’re able to build your army, choosing the characters you want to lead you into battle.
Attachments are special leaders and heroes that are added to Combat Units (CUs), bolstering their capabilities. When constructing your army, you have a number of Points to spend on CUs and Attachments based on the size of game you’re playing. Attachments are not required, but will enhance a CU in numerous ways.
Some Attachments, such as Gregor Clegane (aka The Mountain) simply enhance the raw combat capabilities of the CU. Others, such as the above-shown Greatjon Umber, instead focus on bolstering the Morale benefits of your CU, which is seen here by causing automatic Hits to an enemy. Adding Greatjon to a CU will make the enemy think twice before targeting them with any effects that would force Morale Tests (a particular tactic that the Lannisters like to employ).
Of course, in addition to the various named characters appearing in ASOIF:TMG, there are also the generic unnamed unit leaders. While there is only one Greatjon Umber, you might include a few Sworn Sword Captains or Umber Champions in your army, each providing different boosts to the CU they lead. However, each CU can only have one Attachment, so matching the right Attachment to the right CU is paramount.
There is no simple best option. The most appropriate Attachment for the CU will depend entirely upon what you want that CU’s role to be on the battlefield. Even if you’re looking at the same CU of Stark Sworn Swords (the basic CU of House Stark), you’ll need to decide if you want to outfit them for a more offense focused role (in which case, a Sworn Sword Captain would be your best choice), a resilience feel (which puts the Umber Champion as the best bet), or maybe a quick and maneuverable objective-grabber CU (having them be led by Robb Stark: The Young Wolf).
Choosing your Attachments can fundamentally change how a CU operates and will add to the tactical and strategic depths available to you once your army hits the battlefield! An army is as strong as its leaders. In ASOIF:TMG, the way you construct your army, and the leaders you choose, could be the difference between glory on the battlefiled, or death.
Picking the people you want to go into battle with is not a decision to make lightly. Choosing the person to lead you into the fray can be even tougher. With control of all of Westeros at stake, you need to be able to trust your army with your life. In the War of the Five Kings, you can be sure that the other Houses will not give up an inch. In A Song of Ice and Fire: Tabletop Miniatures Game (ASOIF:TMG), you recruit your soldiers and choose someone to lead the charge into battle. The person you pick will have a great effect on the way you play, and whether you find glory or death on the battlefield.
We previously looked at Combat Unit (CU) Attachments, but there is one more aspect of them to explore.
Certain figures in the game are Commanders. When constructing your army, you will always choose one Army Commander; a renowned hero that will shape how your army plays and operates. More often than not, your Commander will also be a CU Attachment, taking to the battlefield to personally join in the fight. In that way, they act as a standard CU Attachment.
The big difference from other Attachments, however, is how they manipulate your Tactics Deck. Each faction has access to its own deck of cards, 14 in total (two copies of seven unique cards) that make up the unique strategies and methods of that faction. When you pick an Army Commander, they also add six of their own cards (usually three unique cards, two copies of each) to your Tactics Deck, giving you a total of 20 cards.
You start with three Tactics Cards and refill your hand back up to three at the start of each round. Each Tactic Card lists when it can be played, as well as its immediate effect. In addition to this, most Tactics Cards will grant additional bonuses depending on if you control various areas of the Tactics Board. In the above example, we have the House Stark Tactics Card Winter is Coming, which cripples enemy CUs by making them Panicked and Vulnerable, thus becoming easy prey for a Stark assault! Should you also control the Swords area of the Tactics Board, the enemy can’t resist the negatives instilled by the cards, such is House Stark’s military might!
As previously mentioned, your army Commander is going to add their own Tactics Cards to the deck (almost a full 1/3 of it). This, in turn, also manipulates the overall strategy you employ. For example, in the ASOIF:TMG Starter Set – Stark vs. Lannister you will have access to two Commanders on each side. For the Starks this means Greajon Umber: Lord of Last Hearth and Robb Stark: The Young Wolf. If you choose Greatjon as your Commander, his specific Tactics Cards are going to make your CUs become all the deadlier as they come closer to being wiped out- really embodying the “berserker” play style of House Umber as a whole.
Contrast this to an army led by Robb, whose cards focus on swift maneuverability and a focus on hitting the enemy in their weak-spots. Your army won’t have the raw hitting power that you had with Greatjon, but you’ll more than make up for that with speed and cunning.
It is in this way that, even if two players were commanding the exact same units, their overall tactics, strategy, and play style can be vastly different!
Combat is a tug-of-war, with each side looking for any advantage they can get. A wise leader will know when is the right time to make an assault on the enemy and when they should move themselves into a more tactically sound position.
In ASOIF:TMG you will have to make critical decisions with the life of your troops hanging in the balance. No one said war was easy, but make the right choices and take some well-timed risks and you might must find yourself ascending to the Iron Throne.
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