Tuesday, 4 March 2014

In Which I Play Warmachine

 I got to play Warmachine on Sunday, two little 15 point (using the starter sets) games against two mates, followed by a pub lunch and a pint at a local Wetherspoons. The venue was Titan Games Stourbridge where I bought the things from in the first place.

And.... I'm quite impressed. Clever little game. Of course, it's all about combos of abilities and getting the timing spot on. Looking forwards to playing again and probably going to expand the force with two Defilers which will take up to 25 points which is the next level of army size (A whole twenty-five points! Somehow this would seem less ridiculous if it was 250 or 2500 points instead).

On the subject of Warma, Von posted this in an earlier post that deserves more attention than to hide unseen back there

So I don't know how you feel about 'dead threads', Coop, but since I didn't even know you'd come back to life all of a sudden I'm going to stick my oar in anyway: your qualms about Warmachine are exactly the same as mine and I've been playing the bugger for eight years.

I do think it's an excellent system for the kitchen-table casual player. If your time is limited and you have no patience for bullshit then flipping back and forth through a five hundred page behemoth to discover which random table will be fucking you over this turn, or whether there's any way out of the editing-induced blue-screen-of-death "so I have to do THIS but THAT says I can't and sure, I could just d6 it, but I can't believe nobody thought of this" booby-trap* might not be all that appealing.

I've been saying it a lot recently: watertight rules do not forbid narrative, easygoing play. I'd argue that they enable it. When I picked up a Cuntdestroyer of my own* I was highly amused by the game having rules for headlocking, slamming and throwing my mate Dave's Flangemallet* - all the 'cinematic' stuff that I imagine 40K Dreadnoughts doing.

For good or ill, the game is MOSTLY the province of the tournament folks. It's led to a drive in good rules but a certain... sameyness... in the actual games that get played. You're coming at it in the same spirit as I am though, and if I'm passing through the West Mids again I'd be happy to chuck some Angry Elves at you.

(Also, I suggest looking into the Iron Kingdoms RPG. Warmachine's rules and range adapted for co-operative play. Could work very well as a co-op skirmish game for scenario fanciers, and since it says 'RPG' on the book you might be able to round up a more similar-minded group of players that way. Just a thought.)

1 comment:

  1. That size of game used to be 350 points, back in my day. I'm not sure I miss those days. Can you REALLY say that the Reaper is worth EXACTLY 121 points when a Slayer is 110? I'm not sure. Can you say that the harpoon makes it worth 7 to the Slayer's 6, like the Defiler's Spray makes it worth 5 to the Sprayless Nightwretch's 4? I think you can. It's very clear what you're paying for in modern Warmachine, and I like that, although I think setting an initial benchmark of 12-13 for a character heavy may have bitten them in the arse a bit. I'd have liked a little more wiggle room in the lower end of the points scale, 'cause sometimes you see two units for 4/6 and think "no way are they worth the same"...