Tag Archives: War of the Ring

Skirmish Games – WTB PST!


A Skirmish Team, Yesterday

In June of last year I wrote a post posing questions about how people choose what games they play. When you look at it it was really just a bit of a diatribe on how we’ve ended up playing what we are playing. Looking at the second list on that post and what we’ve done gaming wise things have changed slightly, inevitably things do as real life happens, let’s review and see where we are now.

  • Warhammer 40,000
  • War of the Ring
  • Malifaux
  • Warmachine
  • Firestorm Armada
  • Dungeons and Dragons

This was the list as was, below is the list according to stuff we’ve actually played recently;

  • Warhammer 40,000
  • Warhammer Fantasy (Just me and Gribblin)
  • Malifaux (Just me and nBreaker and we need another game soon!)
  • Firestorm Armada
  • War of the Ring
  • Dungeons and Dragons (although I need to pen the next part of the campaign soon)

Warmachine, despite being popular has not been touched for ages. In all honesty we haven’t played any Firestorm for a while either and Gribblin has the rules and a Starter set for Dystopian Wars. I imagine he’d like someone to play against but I’m somewhat distrustful of Spartan’s business model. In under a year we’ve got 3 games each with starter sets and they aren’t exactly a huge company. There are other games on the horizon and I wonder how they are going to sate their customers who play only one of their offerings, although I imagine that many of them play all three. I do wonder how long it will be before even those playing all three games start complaining that there aren’t enough releases for one of the games.

When we were out and about on Monday I overheard the comment that one of the team was looking for a decent skirmish game. Now, as regular readers may know, this is my favourite kind of game. I know that Gribblin prefers his big sweeping regiments kind of games and I have room to accommodate that too, but small games are awesome because they cost less to get into, take less time to play and are more in-depth.

The range that was being looked at at the time was Infinity, a game I have the first edition rulebook for and used to have some models before selling them off. It was voiced that this game is quite complex and it is. Obviously we also have Warmachine, however, considering how much you need to play properly I view Warmachine and Hordes as a kind of halfway-house between skirmish and army games. A basic army will have more models in a squad than a typical skirmish game has in total. I think what is being looked for is something more akin to Confrontation 3.5 and that was an excellent game, even with its complexity but you could play it straight away due to the fact the rules were included with each blister pack.

Over the Christmas period I’ve spent some time looking into proper skirmish games, games that require a maximum of around 7 or 8 figures to play the default level of game. This kind of game is proper skirmish in the vein of the now deceased Confrontation and due to the number of models required is pretty easy on the wallet too. While your typical Games Workshop army for any system will set you back around £200 just for models, the skirmish games will come in at around £50 a 75% saving. It’s also lighter on the storage requirements which tends to keep wives/girlfriends happy.

Rulebooks these days tend to come in around £20 and providing you’re not GW there are no army books required either, you get everything you need in the one book (although I have to give props for War of the Ring having everything in the main book).

Luckily, the number of skirmish games right now provides a lot of choice to the consumer. The one problem with skirmish games though is the somewhat insatiable enthusiasm of gamers. While it may be that a skirmish game costs only 25% of the cost associated with an army game your average gamer cannot resists pretty models and therefore splashes out more cash on a second or third faction for a game, thus raising the expenditure towards the level of the army type games anyway. Self-restraint can be difficult at the best of times but decent looking models really can wear down a gamer’s resolve.

Off the top of my head I can list a number of skirmish games that might scratch the itch for the inhabitants of the floating citadel, providing a cheap game to get into and vastly reduced quantities of stuff to transport to gaming sessions;

  • Eden
  • Hell Dorado
  • Anima: Tactics
  • Infinity
  • Malifaux
  • Freebooter’s Fate

These would be my top picks. Eden has starter boxes that come with the rules included. Hell Dorado was sold off and the resurrection of the franchise is upon us with an English rulebook expected to drop soon along with new starter sets. Anima has some amazing models and requires only a handful of models, this was one of the major investigations I was doing over Christmas, you can also get the entire rules free online. Infinity has some gorgeous stuff, however, it was mentioned that it is quite complicated in its rules and you need a bucket-load of terrain to play it. Malifaux is already in 6 Inch Move HQ, however, I know some people have reservations about it with regards to the balance of certain models and the vast swathe of special rules each model has. Still, from a personal point of view it’s easy to learn the basics of the game and the special rules for each model are where your strategy comes from. Freebooter’s Fate I’ve looked into only slightly, although any fantasy game that requires no dice, one card deck among all players and has lots of pirates is on to a winner from the start.

As was mentioned in my post last year, the games we play generally come from consensus, although there are the times when one of us runs out and buys some stuff and the others take a look and then do the same. Obviously with a casual play group you want to be careful about spending other people’s money for them, hence why I don’t own a great raft of stuff and then try to get others to play them. The consensual side of things keeps everything amicable as people voice whether they are happy or not.

My top picks from the above list, discounting Malifaux, would be either Anima or Freebooter’s Fate. Anima has a vast array of stunning models to get and while Freebooter’s Fate does have some expensive models, they are very good and you need a handful to play at the default level.

We’ll have to see if anything new comes up this year in terms of the games we play, a decent skirmish game would get me excited though. Maybe we all need to save money and just start playing some Warmachine instead?

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The Red Pilgrim


Merry Christmas everyone.  As has been said it is that time of year again.  I was hoping to have written this post a couple of days ago but oh well its still in time for Christmas.  As you’ve probably guessed by now we here at 6 inch move don’t always take our gaming too seriously.  So from the twisted mind that brought you the Tervigon and the Tyrannofex I present to you a festive themed conversion that will hopefully put a smile on your faces for the new year.  Behold the Red Pilgrim.

You should have seen the reaction I got when I went into my local gaming store the other day and asked for a tub of snow.

Merry Christmas everyone!!

Glorfindel; Lord of the West


After last weeks gaming I wanted to post a few pictures of my finished Glorfindel model, however I have recently been suffering from the attentions of Nurgle and had bearly left my bed for two days.  On Monday I was considering which one of my friends would get to pay off their mortgage after inheriting my Tyranid army.  But the sickness has passed and now here are some pictures.

What is it about Elves?


As you will already be aware of Thursday night saw us gamers get together for another round of beat on the Elf.  Last nights battle was a lot of fun.  As ZombiePirate has already informed you it was a battle for the pass game with us basically having to kill as much of each other as possible [I love simple games].   My army had seen a few changes since its last use – out went the Ent which had done next to nothing in 3 games, and I’ve also been trying out lots of different characters – in last nights match I used Glorfindel, Thranduil and Cirdan.  The rest is pretty familiar; 3 companies each of Galadrim, Galadrim Archers and Galadrim Knights.

I deployed my army across the board to take full advantage of the longbows, whilst ZombiePiarte used a refused flank stance.  In general the battle went as follows – Elves got attacked by the wood; Galadrim Archers shot the crap out of stuff; Glorfindel had a fantastic failure of a combat with the Winged Nazgul (more later); the Galadrim Knights saw off the Haradrim Raiders, then got finished off in combat against the Haradrim Infantry with Dalamyr (though they did take out about a third of the unit); the Nazgul spent half the game having fantastic magic rolls, whilst despite having 3 casters, mine flopped like a bad perm; Glorfindel later redeemed himself by finishing off the Haradrim, the Easterlings and the Nazgul and at the end of it all there was 4 Morgul Knights and Dalamyr left on the table.  Total whip out for the Elves [my third in a row now!].

So what are my feelings towards my army?  I like the Elves, despite the losses sustained so far – I’ve 1 game out of 4 and like I said the last 3 there was nothing left of my army, but at least this time there wasn’t much left of my opponent’s either.  For some reason I like the Elves (and Elf-type) armies in wargames.  I have a Wood Elf army for Fantasy, an Eldar army for 40K and the Thaniras Elf fleet for Uncharted Seas.  And now after playing some games of War of the Ring I’ve noticed a theme; that they all aim for the hit hard, hit fast principle.  They are all incredibly fast armies with a lot of hitting power, but somewhat lower defences and so tend to lose out in a war of attrition.  The Elves of War of the Ring are no different.  After having spent some time thinking about the army, I’ve identified what I see to be the main strengths and weaknesses of in the army.

Strengths

  • Speed – all the Elves move at least 8 inches (their cavalry move 12), they also all have pathfinder master, meaning that they ignore difficult terrain.
  • High Fight – even the basic Elf is Fight 5 (equal to many other people’s Epic Heroes) and their own Epic Heroes often have Fight values of 7,8 and 10.  So that’s LOTS of attack dice.
  • Terror – they all cause terror.
  • High Courage – basic Elf courage is 5, with captains and most Epics at 6, making them very reliable and making the Spirit Grasp rule pretty pointless against them.
  • Longbows – 36″ range weapon with at least 10 dice per company, it massacres lightly armoured units and even heavy units need to watch out.
  • Magic – the only Good army to have magic users in their list and there are plenty of them; out of 12 Epic Hero choices 6 are magic users, plus there are 2 Legendary formations and the Galadrim can be upgraded with Stormcallers.  This gives you access to Dismay, Command and Wilderness spells.
  • Characters – they have more Epic Heroes to choose from than any other army save Mordor, so that’s plenty of choice.

Weaknesses

  • Expensive – most companies of Elves cost at least 50pts; that’s enough for 2 companies of Minas Tirith Warriors or almost 4 companies of Orcs/Goblins.  This means you can expect to be outnumbered by at least 2:1.  It also means that you often can’t afford the a lot of unit upgrades.
  • Low Defence – they’re defence is often a point or two lower than most units; e.g. Galadrim Warriors 4(6), Easterling Cohort 5(7).
  • Limited unit options – a lot of the units do similar things, and they’re is no artillery.
  • Characters – too much choice leaves you pondering on which characters to use and the expensive units means you can’t get a lot of Might points in your army.

So how do I feel about the army that I used last night? And how did these strengths/weaknesses play out?

Glorfindel: I decided that I wanted to use this guy partly because I thought I could do with a monster to replace the Ent and partly because I enjoyed painting the model [it’s the big green one in Servitob’s post].  The beginning of the game went really badly for him – he charged the Winged Nazgul, declared a Heroic Duel and did nothing, then came regular fighting between them and again nothing.  What should have been a dramatic combat between two monsters was a huge pile of fail from both characters, no hits were scored.  He failed a lot of his spells and failed to hit a single Morgul Knight in a later combat.  He later redeemed himself by killing the said Nazgul along with the Easterlings and the Haradrim.  His speed and the sheer number of dice you roll in combat makes him a formidable character, and at defence 7 and Very Hard to Kill, he’s not easy to hurt.  Would I use him again? Most definitely, but at 250pts he’s probably a bit too expensive for a 1000pt army.

Overall rating so far: 4/5

Thranduil: Another new hero for me to try.  His epic shot surprised ZombiePirate and his Fight 7 and Wilderness Spells are useful – though I did manage to fail a lot of my magic rolls (especially focus rolls) with him.  On the plus side he is (125pts) and you get a good combat character who is also a wizard.  Chances of me using him again; good.

Overall rating: 3/5

Cirdan: A new choice for me.  I thought his Command Spells would hurt the Nazgul and repair damage to his unit, but he got Black Darted at the beginning of turn 2 and had done nothing in the game.  If he had survived longer, then perhaps something may have come from him, but at Resilience 1 I’m not sure I’ll be in a hurry to use him soon.

Overall rating 2/5

Galadrim Infantry: I’ve had a mixed amount of success with these troops.  As my main combat unit they tend to get a lot of attention, but at the moment I’m only fielding 3 companies of them, and the damage absorption just isn’t there.  One the plus side they do have a habit of really hurting stuff in close combat and at defence 6 they can take some punishment.  They have worked well when supported with a Hero with Epic Defence and the Spells of Command to replenish depleted companies.  A good, dependable unit, just don’t hit it too many times.

Overall rating 3/5

Galadrim Archers: Probably the one unit that has done the most damage.  At the risk of offending the dice gods they have a habit of doing a lot of damage with their longbows, hence why I added a third company to the unit since my last game.  At fight 5 they’re also no pushovers in combat and when they have a Hero with Epic Shot or Epic Defence, they become a unit to fear.  This unit I intend on taking every time I go to the field.

Overall rating 5/5

Galadrim Knights: Another useful unit.  I’ve yet to use the shield armed variety as I find their longbows and Expert Rider ability just too much of a temptation.  They do a decent amount fo damage at range – destroying the Haradrim Raiders after 3 volleys, and they can deal a lot of damage in combat.  There one big weakness – defence 4, so pick your targets carefully.  This being said, I fully intended on keeping the unit in my army.

Overall rating 4/5

So how did the army as a whole work?  Ignoring the bad dice rolling that plagued us both this game I think it went well.  Although I had nothing left, it was probably the most tightly fought game so far.  The speed, high fight and longbow strengths really came out, how ever so did the lacking in numbers and the loss of Might points to the Black Dart.  What would I change for next time?  I think that the army was to character heavy, especially for 1000pts, so a change of characters will probably take place before the next battle.  Good thing I have plenty to choose from.

Good Vs Evil – The Battle of the Haircut


In an obvious attempt to steal my thunder Servitob has already displayed some of the exploits from last nights gaming nirvana. Not only that, but he is obviously trying to make me feel bad by picturing my plastic army men force going up against Gribblin’s painted, foppish, dilettantes… If you stare really closely you can spot some painted Easterlings in there I swear!

After meeting up at our usual hang-out it turned out that only Carabus, Gribblin and myself had bothered to bring any models. As Carabus had already mercilessly crushed the Armani handbag forces of the Elven Kingdoms and I was yet to face off against their perfectly manicured and flaxen-haired Galadhrim legions, it was decided I would be fighting this time round.

I’d tweaked my list ever so slightly from the last time out when I had great success against the Rohan. The Winged Nazgul stayed in the list but the rider on his back changed from the Shadow Lord to Khamul the Easterling. I wanted to try out his Essence Leech ability and it fits more into my purported Easterling themed army. I also dropped the Balefire Arrows Fate from the Haradrim Warband and took the Black-hearted Trees intervention, this was primarily an anti-Ent pick but can also do a number on any infantry that choose to camp out in defensible terrain (we normally have at least one or two forests on the table).

Gribblin had some changes of his own but that’s his army so I’ll let him tell you all about that. Our independent adjudicator nBreaker rolled our mission and deployment, he rolled Field of Swords and Maelstrom respectively. After we administered a swift kicking and some “re-education” we settled on the same objective but rolled Battle for the Pass as deployment in the hope of a less random and a more balanced and enjoyable game. I won the roll off and tasked Gribblin with deploying first. Glorfindel and the Galadhrim infantry went on my left flank behind a wood while the Galadhrim Archers took up position line abreast in the centre with the Knights on the right flank. With the centre of the table composed of a defensible building with some walls there was lots of room to go up either side, I had a wood on my right too. I decied to massively weight my forces towards the left flank, I know things move very quickly in War of the Ring but his cavalry would have to come to me if they wanted to hurt things. Therefore I deployed my Morgul Knights on my far left, to their right were the Haradrim with Dalamyr, next was the Easterling Cohort with the Winged Nazgul stationed behind them. The Watchers of Karna were left in ambush and I’d chosen the wood in Gribblin’s deployment zone as their hiding place. Lastly the Haradrim Raiders were all alone on the right flank to make Gribblin think about his targets and movement or end up with a roaming cavalry unit in his flanks if he turned towards the rest of my army.

Gribblin then gave me priority for the first turn, the Easterlings shuffled forwards slightly but everything else stood still. I was determined to make it hard for the Elf shooting if I could. Rather than give a total blow-by-blow report (I’ll leave that to Gribblin and his better memory) I thought I’d take the units in turn and give a run down of their performance. I’m still looking at my army as a whole and thinking of improvements and tabletop performances are a great way of seeing what is working and what isn’t.

Haradrim Raiders – My current list has 4 companies of these guys with a Banner Bearer. Despite their speed they got shot up by the longbow armed Galadhrim Knights and never made it into combat, this is the third game where they have done nothing. The unit costs 135pts so it isn’t exactly a cheap throw away unit but they have now gotten completely shot down without seeing combat in two out of the three games I have played. Therefore I am considering their future, they do provide a nice boost to the number of companies I field but so far haven’t achieved anything.

Overall rating so far 2/5

Haradim Warband – 4 Companies accompanied by Dalamyr, Fleet Master of Umbar. Cheap and cheerful these are my shooting troops, I may drop the bows though as I rarely shoot, I’d rather move farther forwards and get them into combat. They may only be Defence 4 but due to the size of the unit can soak up casualties. They took a pounding from Elven shooting but still got across the table and made one of the biggest differences in the game. They took a charge from the Galadhrim Knights towards the end of the game. The combination of Dalamyr’s Flash and Caltrops (no charge bonuses against his formation) and spending both Might points for an Epic Strike and Epic Poison meant that the Knights didn’t really kill a lot of Haradrim, while being Fight 10 and re-rolling all failed hits was nasty, they managed to wipe out the Knights completely. I took Dalamyr mainly for his anti-charge rule, I couldn’t really think of why I’d ever use Epic Poison considering the other uses for Might but it was the spot-on time to do it last night and it paid dividends.

Overall rating so far 4/5

Easterling Cohort – 3 Companies with Dragon Knight and Captain armed with Pikes. People avoid these guys like the plague. Defence 7 to the front with Pikes denying charge bonuses is quite a good thing. These guys are just solid and dependable and people don’t like them. They got wiped out in the end this game but they were ground down over time and I made some bad choices with their movements which put them out of position. The Captain Will of Ironed a spell at the right moment and I rolled like a chump when declaring an Heroic Duel against Glorfindel (no guts, no glory). Still, I like their solid and immoveable nature.

Overall rating so far 4/5

Morgul Knight Regiment – 3 Companies with Banner Bearer. Second time out for these guys. Their low courage hurts them, especially when they get Light of the Valar chucked at them every turn. However, once Dalamyr moved over from the Harardim they got a lot tougher. This was the only unit I had left at the end of the game and they pretty much got ignored. I am thinking that they may need a Hero in there full time, probably an Epic Hero to really get the most out of them, especially against anything that causes Terror. This was the first game where Terror really played a part as both myself and Gribblin failed a lot of Terror tests. They did however finish off Glorfindel which was awesome, so that swings in their favour. People are also scared of what they are capable of and I would like to see them charge some infantry at some point, so, still need some more time with them to really find their niche.

Overall rating so far 3/5

Winged Nazgul – I swapped my original Dark Marshal Epic Hero for a Winged Nazgul after the first game, replacing the Mumak. In the two games he has been in my army he has scared the living snot out of the opposition and rightly so. If I had to pick my overall most effective unit it’s this fella. The Swoop Attack can really hurt, especially if you get a nice line of stuff to go over, however, as anyone who has used a Nazgul knows, he is a Wizard more than a fighter. While being on the Fell Beast certainly ups his damage output in combat it’s the magic he casts that is the real gem. While I had a number of spells fail at critical moments (the Nazgul was killed by a charging Glorfindel after I cast Strength from Corruption on him. Average rolls would have seen him dead but I rolled like a chump, scoring one hit), but for the first few turns he went around Black Darting enemy Heros with great success. I reckon next time my opponents may Will of Iron it but that suits me fine, they spend a point of Might to try to stop it and 50% of the time I’ll still be getting the spell off to strip more Might, it’s a tough decision for a player to face. I also got Black Breath off a few times which annoys Heroes too. Khamul’s ability to redirect his Hits hoovered up some Elves here and there too which was another annoyance. Overall I’ve been having great success with this model, sure it eats up all my Allies allowance but it is a mobile threat and one hell of a good one too.

Overall rating so far 5/5

Watchers of Karna – 1 Company with bows and they might not be making a re-appearance. I had spare points so spent them here, however, the idea that they would harass opponents in their own deployment zone through ambushing hasn’t really played out. To be a threat I’d need more of them but I just don’t see them filling that role well enough. A bigger unit would be better but I have nowhere else to squeeze the points to do that. Better if you take the battlehost but then you’d have to sell your kids to afford those metal models so overall about as useful as a third testicle.

Overall rating so far 2/5

Sauron’s forces eventually triumphed over Galadriel’s finest but there was only one unit left at the end of the game, the Morgul Knights. The game really had an ebb and flow to it with the advantage swinging between both forces at one time or another. It was an hard-fought game and I had a lot of fun, happy that I won of course but happier that we had a good game and I got to once more assess the forces at my command. I reckon I can fit some more Nazgul in there….

More Dice Voodoo At The Church Of Gaming


Thursday evening saw the 6InchMove team head to their latest addition of the floating citadel to talk more smack, throw more dice and drink more DPZ. Fortunately, the Co-op had a buy one get one free offer on DPZ. Unfortunately that meant that they had sold out, so we were reduced to drinking Pepsi of the Max variety.

The gaming commenced with War Of The Ring, the much mocked yet well dressed elvish handbag collectors of Gribblin taking on the might of ZombiePirate’s Fallen Realms.

Cunning use of mobile fortifications
It was a close match that went down to pretty much the last throw of the dice, but as Dark Helmet carefully noted in Spaceballs: “Evil will always triumph because good is dumb.”, the lads from the Fallen Realms won the day. To be fair though, there was no dumbness here as both players are getting their tactics for playing this excellent game correct.
Start Of The Final Turn
Death Angel

Following War Of The Ring, we all settled down for a game of Death Angel, the card game based on Space Hulk. Personally, I really enjoy this game, almost to the extent that I enjoy Space Hulk. Honestly! Yes, they are two different beasts but Death Angel is far more straightforward at least from a logistical point of view and still retains the edge of tension and the much cliched “a moment to learn, a lifetime to master” type feeling of the original.

Middle Earth – The Battle of Good and Evil


Over recent weeks the 6 Inch Move team have become ever more enamoured with our sojourn into Tolkien’s fantasy realm. Servitob even went out and bought the movies! I believe that I’ve now played and seen enough games to start to really understand the flow and mechanics of the game and also the more noticeable differences between the two sides. While each faction within an alignment is distinct with a theme of their own the alignments themselves offer a different set of playstyles and challenges. What I have to commend the Sherriff for in this regard is the characterisation of the alignments. If someone gave you an edited list of some of the models I reckon that most people would be able to tell you if a model was good or evil just by looking at the numbers.

So, let’s have a look at what a War of the Ring profile means. There are 8 stats for each model profile, as well as a Type that defines whether a model is Infantry, Cavalry or a Monster. These are Movement, Fight, Strength, Defence, Attacks, Resilience, Courage and Might. Movement is quite self-explanatory, this number is how far in inches a company can move during the move phase. Fight is a numerical representation of a company’s combat prowess while Strength is a measure of how easy it is to cause a wound on an opponent. Defence represents things like armour and shields as well as the general toughness of something, you compare Strength against Defence to work out what you need to roll on a D6 to cause a hit. Attacks has two purposes in War of the Ring, firstly it represents the number of dice rolled for a shooting or close combat attack, secondly it is also a handy indicator of the number of wounds a company can take. Resilience is important because it defines how many hits a company can take before it takes a casualty, for infantry this is normally 1 and for Cavalry it is usually 2. Courage represents if a unit is likely to stand and fight or turn tail and run when faced with certain effects. Might is used to Heroes and is one of the defining aspects of the game, appropriate and timely use of Might can drastically change the game.

Not only are the units of differing sides of the Good/Evil divide different in their stat weightings but so are the Heroes. GW have done a really good job here of taking the stories that Tolkien wrote and translating them into a table top game. At first glance the main difference is that the Good side is filled with far more Epic Heroes and Legendary formations, after all, these are the good guys, the ones who will selflessly sacrifice themselves for the good of others. On the flip side the Evil alignment is supported by a veritable cornucopia of Monsters, from Trolls to Dragons, the forces of Sauron have the biggest and gribbliest beasties with which to bolster their lines.

All of this fits well within the mythos and gives armies themes, you will also find that the Good armies are often painted in bright primary colours, blues and reds and whites (OK, I know white isn’t technically a colour), even Gondor with their silver and black regalia have colour thrown in with the Knights of Dol Amroth. The evil sides are filled with dirty browns and greens, the only real difference here is the Fallen Realms list that has the golden armoured Easterlings, but then the balance here is that the reds are dark and black features heavily (again not a colour I know). We’re all still working on getting a fully painted army, other than Gribblin who is just about done with his 1000pts. I’m looking forward to the day when we roll out fully painted armies as it is going to transform the aesthetic of the games we play.

With the forces of Good being bolstered by so many Heroes it is no surprise then that your typical good army has access to a lot of Might. Might allows you to perform actions outside of the normal Priority that is rolled for at the start of each turn, also, Epic Heroes have Epic actions that they are allowed to call, there are a lot of different Epic actions and each Epic Hero has a list of the Epic actions they are allowed to call. Most of the Epic Heroes in the forces of Good have a Might of 3 or more, even some of the cheaper Heroes (sub 100pts) have a good store of Might. Many of the Heroes have special rules and abilities as well.

On the Evil side of things there are differences. Might is a lot harder to come by, to get comparable stores of it you would need to invest much more points in an Epic Hero. I can provide an example from my own Faction, the Fallen Realms, if I want an Epic Hero from my own faction with three points of Might I have to pay 165pts to get Amdur, yes he is a combat monster but Evil is generally bereft of the cheap utility heroes. This is countered through the threat that Monsters provide. The Nazgul also have very low Might but their special rules and the options for their use make them very effective, you have to think hard about using that single Might point with them. There is a temptation to take more Captains and increase the Might available to an evil army but this then restricts the number of troops you can take as they eat heavily into your budget.

One other factor that has played out rather obviously now is the lack of Courage for an evil force. With my Fallen Realms I have a couple of formations that cause Terror. So far no-one has failed a Terror test against anything of mine, Rohan, Elves and Gondor all have access to high Courage values with Inspiring Leaders. Faramir can also allow one formation per turn to automatically pass a Courage test. The Elves cause Terror and have high Courage themselves, this proved pretty conclusive against Servitob’s Uruk-Hai! Using Galadriel to debuff them by a single point or more neutered the charges of the Uruk-hai on numerous occasions. OK, Servitob’s dice had taken this game as an opportunity to go on vacation didn’t help the cause but all those tests with low Courage really came over decisively.

It really is interesting to see how the two alignments are characterised. The prevalence of Epic Heroes for the forces of Good bolsters the men and keeps them going when you’d expect them to fail, while the Evil forces will turn tail and flee when things don’t go their way, all very cinematic I am sure you’ll agree. Planning contingency for these kinds of events is one of the features of army building for this game as it is for many others, seeking to overcome your weaknesses while capitalising on strengths. I still have to face the Elves and a rematch against Carabus’ Gondor, there may even be a clash of evil sometime too to see how I fare against the Uruk-Hai. Will my courage hold against those Elves? I hope so, but I fear (pun intended) for my lowly Courage 3 Haradrim against all those Terror-causing hairdressers!