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View Full Version : Cathay Army List (Yes, another one)



Rodman49
06-12-2008, 22:42
Updated on 22DEC08 for updated armylist (v5), changes include:
1. Re-Focusing of Army to "The Shade" Domain
2. Deleted Units: Tribal Archers, Tribal Chariots, Crossbowmen, & Elementals
3. Changed Units: Peasants, Cho-Ko-Nu, Cataphracts, Battle Monks, Imperial Guard, Imperial Chariot
4. New Units: Conscripts, Hordesmen, Arquebusiers
5. Unchanged Units: Arbalest, Siege Crossbow, Phoenix, Dragon

Attached is a Cathayan Army List with everything from characters to magic items.

I'll take any kind of feedback, but here are a few things I'm looking for in particular:
1. Anything about the Changed Units or New Units
2. Characters (over/underpowered)
3. Magic Items (over/underpowered)
4. Ideas for Exotic Units that fit into the domain

Guardian of the Rage
07-12-2008, 09:45
Hey, that's a nicely formatted list!

Just flicked through and looks good in general.

One thing that i would say is that the current games development team seem to like to give the armies an 'army-wide' special rule. The precise feeling of this special rule i'm unable to say, good to think about though.

In specific terms, the phoenix, i know you gave it regen, but i think that you would be well served making it 'unkillable' (and more expensive) with rules akin to the green knight (though not exactly the same obviously). It is meant to be something which will rise from its own ashes, and i think that the idea of non magical weapons killing it is unfluffy (just the way i saw it) maybe even make it an ethereal model?? Just ideas... and yes it would hence be very expensive.

regards,
GotR

Rodman49
07-12-2008, 21:01
Hey, that's a nicely formatted list!

Just flicked through and looks good in general.

Thanks, took forever to format it, I have it in Microsoft Publisher format if anyone wants/needs it.


One thing that i would say is that the current games development team seem to like to give the armies an 'army-wide' special rule. The precise feeling of this special rule i'm unable to say, good to think about though.

Glory for the Dragon Emperor was the original army-wide special rule. It makes captured banners worth twice as much to the Cathay player. It's an interesting rule when combined with the excellent Magic Banner choices the Cathay player has - battles would be heavily influenced by taking enemy banners while protecting your own as a Cathay player.

Having said that its not quite as awesome Lance Formation or the Detachment rule - the other human armies' army-wide rules. The obvious choice would be to make another formation rule for the Cathay army - but I'm unsure as to what this could be.

I could also do something like the Dark Elves, and give the entire army re-roll wounds and then some slight disadvantage but I feel a rule like that would be much more in character for a Nippon army.


In specific terms, the phoenix, i know you gave it regen, but i think that you would be well served making it 'unkillable' (and more expensive) with rules akin to the green knight (though not exactly the same obviously). It is meant to be something which will rise from its own ashes, and i think that the idea of non magical weapons killing it is unfluffy (just the way i saw it) maybe even make it an ethereal model?? Just ideas... and yes it would hence be very expensive.

I would like to try to avoid units that end up being Points Denial. However maybe I should make it so that if it takes its last wound it revives itself with full complement of wounds on a 3+?

Thanks for the feedback.

grumbaki
08-12-2008, 21:14
I'm reading through it, and I like what I see so far. A few things though:

1) Remove ninjas. Please. Let Nippon (Japan) have them.
2) Leave in the monks. While they would never have had a place in a real Chinese army, I'm sure that there would be a revolt if there were no ninjas or martial artists in an 'Asian army'. :rolleyes:
3) For the magic users, I'd imagine a heavily daoist theme to them. For example, look at Zhang Jiao, a historical figure. He was a daoism who led the Yellow Turban rebellion in 184, and was reputed to be able to summon wind and rain. Besides for having some really nice looking models (wizard's in daoist robes) it would fit well with the theme.
4) The list seems to go across the board when it comes to a time period. You have chariots, which would only have been seen in the early dynasties and the Zhuge Nu (the repeating crossbow), invented somewhere around the year 200. Personally I'd take out the chariots and leave the units of them for the tomb kings only.
5) The training of a Chinese army around the three kingdoms period (seeing as how the Zhuge Nu is the ranged weapon of choice) was pretty variable. However, you have the right idea when you say that the average soldier was looked down upon. However, push their LD back up to 7. Just because tehy are poorly trained should not make them cowards (or at least 6! Ld 5 makes a skaven look brave). Personally, I'd put in another core unit of normal soldiers that are WS-3 BS-3 to show that a number of armies would be well trained.
6) I love the Dragon and Phoenix.
7) As you have the Zhuge Nu, how about putting in some artillery? They had mountable siege crossbows based of the Zhuge Nu.
They also had catapults, which were largely used during the Han Dynasty and the Three Kingdoms period. So I think that they should have a place in the list.

Overall, I like it. A few changes that I would personally make, as listed above, but besides that it looks solid.

kikkoman
08-12-2008, 21:43
This info might be useful to you, but in Warhammer 1st and 2nd edition, they listed rules for Cathay/Nippon Samurai and Vimto monks

while an Old World knight was ws4 bs3 s3 t3 w1 i3 a1 ld7
a Cathay Samurai was ws5 bs5 s3 t3 w2 i6 ld8

a vimto warrior monk was m5 ws8 bs8 s4 t4 w2 i10 a3 ld10 5+ward
fight unarmed
of course such stats are totally ridiculous for this edition, but some justification for superhuman kungfu warrior types.

though in Yin Dragons and Yang Phoenixes... in reality the dragon is associated with the emperor, who is male thus Yang essence, and the phoenix the Empress, which is female and yin. It's up to you what you want to change though.

grumbaki
08-12-2008, 22:42
This info might be useful to you, but in Warhammer 1st and 2nd edition, they listed rules for Cathay/Nippon Samurai and Vimto monks

while an Old World knight was ws4 bs3 s3 t3 w1 i3 a1 ld7
a Cathay Samurai was ws5 bs5 s3 t3 w2 i6 ld8

a vimto warrior monk was m5 ws8 bs8 s4 t4 w2 i10 a3 ld10 5+ward
fight unarmed
of course such stats are totally ridiculous for this edition, but some justification for superhuman kungfu warrior types.


I really, really can's stand this. How better to **** off the Chinese/Japanese by admitting that we can't tell them apart? If an army is to be done based off of China (Cathay), then base it off of them. Even if it is as loose as the Empire being based off Germany, get is straight. And if it is to be based off of Japan (Nippon) then don't put in Chinese elements.

That, and why should a Samurai be any better than an old world knight? If a Bretonnian has been riding and training since childhood, then why would a noble from Nippon be any better? I'd much rather see them more balanced to their old world equivalents.

Rodman49
08-12-2008, 23:45
1) Remove ninjas. Please. Let Nippon (Japan) have them.

Ok, this is legitimate, what kind of skirmisher/scout do you think I should add to replace them? I can't really think of anything particularly Cathayan or Chinese to replace their role though.


2) Leave in the monks. While they would never have had a place in a real Chinese army, I'm sure that there would be a revolt if there were no ninjas or martial artists in an 'Asian army'. :rolleyes:

Hmm, think I should make skirmish, or improve their stats?


3) For the magic users, I'd imagine a heavily daoist theme to them. For example, look at Zhang Jiao, a historical figure. He was a daoism who led the Yellow Turban rebellion in 184, and was reputed to be able to summon wind and rain. Besides for having some really nice looking models (wizard's in daoist robes) it would fit well with the theme.

I guess this is primarily an artistic suggestion. When I think Taoism I think Yin-Yangs and the magic items available the casters kind of force them to chose either death/shadow or fire/heavens. Additionally the magic users are necessary to field the Elementals in the army list.


4) The list seems to go across the board when it comes to a time period. You have chariots, which would only have been seen in the early dynasties and the Zhuge Nu (the repeating crossbow), invented somewhere around the year 200. Personally I'd take out the chariots and leave the units of them for the tomb kings only.

I was thinking the chariots allow the players to field an army inspired by early China with plenty of chariots or they could field an army inspired by later China with tons of crossbowmen (like from the Hero movie). Do you think I should keep them from being units and make them not count as compulsory choice?


5) The training of a Chinese army around the three kingdoms period (seeing as how the Zhuge Nu is the ranged weapon of choice) was pretty variable. However, you have the right idea when you say that the average soldier was looked down upon. However, push their LD back up to 7. Just because tehy are poorly trained should not make them cowards (or at least 6! Ld 5 makes a skaven look brave). Personally, I'd put in another core unit of normal soldiers that are WS-3 BS-3 to show that a number of armies would be well trained.

Ld 6 sounds reasonable, the lack of a core WS-3 BS-3 melee soldier is what I think differentiates this army from Empire. There is no infantry mass that "pushes" the enemy off the field, the normal soldiers are Crossbowmen. That doesn't mean you can't play an infantry army (plenty of Guardsmen and Monks could get the job done) - its just that the way to do that is going to be vastly different than how Empire does it.


6) I love the Dragon and Phoenix.

Yeah, I'm a little afraid that they are underpowered compared to the Hydra, although they both function in a much different manner.


7) As you have the Zhuge Nu, how about putting in some artillery? They had mountable siege crossbows based of the Zhuge Nu.
They also had catapults, which were largely used during the Han Dynasty and the Three Kingdoms period. So I think that they should have a place in the list.

You mean add in something different than a bolt thrower for the siege crossbow? Catapults would probably be a good addition and compete for slots with the bolt throwers.


Overall, I like it. A few changes that I would personally make, as listed above, but besides that it looks solid.

Thanks for the feedback.

Rodman49
09-12-2008, 00:35
while an Old World knight was ws4 bs3 s3 t3 w1 i3 a1 ld7
a Cathay Samurai was ws5 bs5 s3 t3 w2 i6 ld8

a vimto warrior monk was m5 ws8 bs8 s4 t4 w2 i10 a3 ld10 5+ward
fight unarmed
of course such stats are totally ridiculous for this edition, but some justification for superhuman kungfu warrior types.

Ah the old editions. I'm going to try to avoid making the East full of super soldiers, their may be a unit comparable to grail knights but nothing better.


though in Yin Dragons and Yang Phoenixes... in reality the dragon is associated with the emperor, who is male thus Yang essence, and the phoenix the Empress, which is female and yin. It's up to you what you want to change though.

Is that Chinese based or Cathayan based? This may force me too make a few changes . . .

grumbaki
09-12-2008, 00:42
On Ninjas, Monks and Pirate-Monkies

Ok, this is legitimate, what kind of skirmisher/scout do you think I should add to replace them? I can't really think of anything particularly Cathayan or Chinese to replace their role though...Hmm, think I should make skirmish, or improve their stats?

Yup, make them skirmishers. I can't see the monks fighting in ordered ranks, seeing as how they fill in the 'cool' role that martial artists would have to fill.

On Daoist casters

I guess this is primarily an artistic suggestion. When I think Taoism I think Yin-Yangs and the magic items available the casters kind of force them to chose either death/shadow or fire/heavens. Additionally the magic users are necessary to field the Elementals in the army list.

Yeah, I suppose it is more of an artisitic suggestion, but I stick by it none-the-less.

Chariots

I was thinking the chariots allow the players to field an army inspired by early China with plenty of chariots or they could field an army inspired by later China with tons of crossbowmen (like from the Hero movie). Do you think I should keep them from being units and make them not count as compulsory choice?

I'd say that they should not be units and should in all respects be normal chariots. Historically, the chariots of early china really were not units either. If I remember correctly, each chariot would have had a body of foot troops to support it, with a noble fighting on the chariot. Plus, seeing units of light cavalry is the Tomb King's speciality, so the Cathayans probably shouldn't steal that. Having a few normal chariots would make it a bit more unique when compared to other human kindgoms though.

Foot Soldiers

Ld 6 sounds reasonable, the lack of a core WS-3 BS-3 melee soldier is what I think differentiates this army from Empire. There is no infantry mass that "pushes" the enemy off the field, the normal soldiers are Crossbowmen. That doesn't mean you can't play an infantry army (plenty of Guardsmen and Monks could get the job done) - its just that the way to do that is going to be vastly different than how Empire does it.

The only thing here is that it would make players hesitant to take big blocks of infantry. What would be a Cathayan force if it isn't large amounts of foot soldiers, backed up by lots of crossbows and then a little bit of cavalry? I'd say have normal WS-3 BS-3 soldiers with LD-7, but make them cheaper than Empire ones. The empire has the detachment rules and plain swordsmen, so they have the entire training thing. The Bretonnians have the peasants who are not trained at all and are really there as a distraction/combat resolution. For the Cathayans, I'd say give them standard horde troops who can hold their own, but are really there for the numbers. At WS-2 BS-2 Ld-6, I can't see many players taking them in large amounts.

Monsters


Yeah, I'm a little afraid that they are underpowered compared to the Hydra, although they both function in a much different manner.

I am of the belief that when making a new list, make everything feel a bit underpowered. It'll balance things out better than trying to make everything feel 'hard enough', and most other players will appreciate that more. Plus, these monsters have bound spells, which no other ones do, that is cool enough as it is.

Artillery


You mean add in something different than a bolt thrower for the siege crossbow? Catapults would probably be a good addition and compete for slots with the bolt throwers.

:)


Thanks for the feedback.

Always a pleasure.

Rodman49
11-12-2008, 02:26
List updated.

1. No catapults, we added another type of bolt thrower.

2. We kept the chariot units, we think it differentiates Cathay from other human armies, it doesn't really impinge on Tomb Kings (as most competitive lists are aren't lead by a Tomb King on Chariot anyway), and it gives the player more options in building an army list. Single chariots as core units create significant problems as they create an MSU feel that isn't really appropriate for the army we are attempting to create.

3. Standard foot soldiers won't be in the army. It makes it too much like Empire; a infantry based Cathay army is possible, it just has to be done differently than an Empire one - ie spend its rare slots on infantry, take a specific army general etc.

Otherwise most suggestions were taken into account - thanks for the feedback so far; I'd appreciate a little more before preparing the list for art formatting.

Hellebore
11-12-2008, 04:02
I really, really can's stand this. How better to **** off the Chinese/Japanese by admitting that we can't tell them apart? If an army is to be done based off of China (Cathay), then base it off of them. Even if it is as loose as the Empire being based off Germany, get is straight. And if it is to be based off of Japan (Nippon) then don't put in Chinese elements.

That, and why should a Samurai be any better than an old world knight? If a Bretonnian has been riding and training since childhood, then why would a noble from Nippon be any better? I'd much rather see them more balanced to their old world equivalents.

Well I don't think Kikkoman was trying to say that they MUST be like this, only to give an idea of what GW's thoughts on the topic were.

However I think you're being a little oversensitive. Sylvania is obviously Transylvania which has nothing to do with Germany or the Holy Roman Empire. Similarly Marienburg is Holland.

Kislev is a jumble of East European countries dominated by Russia.

So I doubt that having Cathayan 'Samurai' is any more insulting than having Polish Russians etc.

This came up in another Cathay thread where people demanded that the chinese be portrayed as completely without fault and as respectfully as possible, just because. Well I don't see the Norwegians complaining that their culture is portrayed as worshippers of Dark Gods (The Norse et al).

The Mongolians are portrayed as horse raiders who worship chaos as well. Should we change that so they're nice and noble so we don't insult them? That or they're hobgoblins. Mongols are green monsters?

What about Lustria? Apparently the South Americans are LIZARD PEOPLE! How insulting is that!? They aren't lizards so we should chuck out the story to represent the South Americans in more flattering and humane light.


I think Cathay should be represented in a way that fits with Warhammer and NOT a way that fits with gamers who have a compulsive need for over compensating. Almost every human in WFB is a stereotype of some kind of medieval people. Cathay is and should be no different.


Just because there is an island called Nippon and a land called Cathay doesn't mean they must be exact duplicates of China and Japan. Anymore than The Empire is exactly German or Kislev is exactly Russian. If Samurai make more sense in Cathay that's where they go. Nippon could simply be over run with chaos warbands (as it was 20 years ago iirc). Thus it's much more like the Badlands/Border Princes (another stereotyped location - the Balklands).

I like the list by the way. :p

Hellebore

Ymir
11-12-2008, 04:30
Being both a Tomb Kings player and having a degree in chinese history (and working on one in mandarin), I've got quite a few thoughts about this lists. I might seem rather whiny and critical, so let me first point out that I really do like both the idea and how you've realized it; all my remarks are just about details. Further down in the post, I'll try to inspire you with a few additional ideas.

- Why on earth does Monks have a -japanese- name? ('Shugenja'). I don't really like that Monks are in the list at all, as they are a tired cliché. But it's your call, of course.
- Why can't peasants have light armour and shields? Seems to me like they should be able to (for extra points of course).
- Why can't crossbowmen have light armour?
- I would make Cho Ku Nu more special by removing repeater crossbows from the core crossbowmen. They'll do fine with ordinary crossbows.
- I would give Tribal Archers either BS4 or +1 to hit, with an appropriate increase in point cost of course. Either because of superior archer skills or superior compound bows. Also, again, light armour. Aren't they meant to be based on the steppe peoples?
- Regarding chariots, I'm a bit conflicted. Chariots are -super awesome-, that's true, but it is rather strange that so many armies in Warhammer has them, as in reality, chariots got obsolete as soon as the stirrup was invented. No one ever used chariots after that, except for racing in Byzantium. This is a fantasy game, however, so it depends entirely on how much of a historical feel that you're after. In either case, you should write that the -stirrup- made the chariots see a steady decline, not the crossbows.
- I do feel, though, that light chariots in units infringe a little on Tomb Kings core 'thing'. Although, the Cathayan chariots aren't fast cavalry, correct me if I'm wrong, so I guess TK's still got that.
- One of the chariot crew should be able to have a halberd, or at least a spear. (A certain halberd-like weapon was very common both among infantry and chariot crew in chinese antiquity).
- Dragons should really be Yang and Phoenixes Yin, that's much more in theme with chinese mythology.
- I don't like the name 'Dynasty Warrior' for one of the Lord choices, because the video games series of the same name is far to famous. Couldn't 'Imperial Prince' or something be just as good?
- Shouldn't cataphracts be able to have shields, or great weapons, or cathayan longswords? Overall I miss a bit of weapon options on your units.
- Elementals could be skirmishers, just like wood elves forest spirits. It always bugs me when monsters or ethereal beings have to move in perfect formations. It just doesn't look right.

The items all seem good, but I think a little to many of the weapons are cathayan longswords. A spear or halberd would fit in. I also think there's a little to few choices that costs 20 points; you need those if a hero pick one for 30 points, which there are plenty of.

How have you reasoned when you chose what lores the Wu Jen can take? To my mind, all the Lores in the Basic Rulebook seems entirely appropriate för a chinese fantasy feel.

Also, I think you should have regular soldiers as a core choice. I realize you had some kind of vision by not having that, but it doesn't feel at all chinese to me - Chinas greatest asset (and its greatest sorrow) has always been its limitless supply of manpower. You've catered to that partly of course, with the peasants, but I still think Cathay should have some kind of 'ordinary' soldiers, you know, the standard WS3, Light armour + shield + spear/halberd-stuff.

I would also add some kind of bow-armed skirmishers with the woodsman rule. I don't really know why, it just seems to feel...right. Call them 'Mercenary Bandits', 'Militia Hunters' or something. At least a unit of skirmishing bandits of some kind would really fit the feel, as bandits and outlaws are frequent characters in chinese fiction, both old and new.

And just some ideas about more 'fantastic' units:
- There could be a kind of beastmaster that drives angry tigers or bears towards the foe.
- Weretigers maybe?
- Rocket Launchers
- Footmen armed with primitive firearms, something like Ogre Leadbelchers.
- Some kind of War altar/War shrine-esque thing.
- Ogre Maneaters
- Qilin cavalry (that's sort of a chinese unicorn)
- Terracotta golems
- Undead terracotta warriors
- Fanatics (something like Empire flagellants; a band of outcast peasants that have worked up a frenzy about one issue or the other. I could even stomach if they know Kung fu; just look at the Boxer rebellion. The An Lushan rebellion would be a better case study as Warhammer goes, though).
- War Mammoths have a place in every army, 'cuz (woolly) mammoths are the single most awesome creature that has ever existed.

And ideas about additional character choices:
- Torturemaster (I've no idea about what he does, but the chinese culture have always been really good at bisarre and brutal punishments. In any case, imagine a stern mandarin with a 'toolbox'. Maybe he keeps the peasants in line? Might otherwise be a good concept for a special character).
- Demonhunter (Some kind of combat mage, lore of Light or Fire...like the guy in A Chinese Ghost Story)
- Grand Strategist (A rather weak type, as characters go, that does something interesting leadership-wise, think Sun Zi. Might otherwise be a good concept for a special character).
- Master Engineer (more useful than the Empire one, look at the Dwarf version).
- Barbarian general (just the guy that led the tribal archers to Cathay, where they took hire as mercenaries).
- Paymaster (keeps the tribal units in check)
- A spoiled princess in a palanquin. She should be a special character though. I've no idea what she does on the battlefield, though. Maybe she's got a -really- badass bodyguard?

I would like some unit/character with a Yin/Yang-ability or spell. Yin makes a unit Stubborn or Immune to Psychology, Yang gives a unit Frenzy or Hatred.

Well...hope that helped. Keep us updated, I'm curious to see how this project turns out!

Rodman49
11-12-2008, 06:27
Well I don't think Kikkoman was trying to say that they MUST be like this, only to give an idea of what GW's thoughts on the topic were.

...

I think Cathay should be represented in a way that fits with Warhammer and NOT a way that fits with gamers who have a compulsive need for over compensating. Almost every human in WFB is a stereotype of some kind of medieval people. Cathay is and should be no different.

What you're saying is pretty true but I have a different reason for not including Samurai. By giving the Cathay army a decent amount of elite armored infantry you change the makeup and overall strategy of the army - I thought the absence of Samurai forces in the army creates a much different playstyle in this list in comparison to the Bretonnia and Empire lists.

The other consideration here is that this list should be not be an overall "Warhammer East" list, other lists like a Nippon list with Samurai/Ninjas or an Ind list with hoplites/elephants should also be possible without crossing over with this list.

Thanks for the feedback and glad you thought the list was decent.

Rodman49
11-12-2008, 07:59
On Characters

- Why on earth does Monks have a -japanese- name? ('Shugenja'). I don't really like that Monks are in the list at all, as they are a tired cliché. But it's your call, of course.
- I don't like the name 'Dynasty Warrior' for one of the Lord choices, because the video games series of the same name is far to famous. Couldn't 'Imperial Prince' or something be just as good?

Do you have a better suggestion for the Monk character name? Maybe the Chinese equivalent to whatever Shugenja is? I'm not really sure what you would call the leader of a Shaolin Temple. We made the Dynasty Warrior for the very reason of the video game, everyone whose a video gamer is going to know what is going on with the character.


On Infantry

- Why can't peasants have light armour and shields? Seems to me like they should be able to (for extra points of course).
- Why can't crossbowmen have light armour?
- I would make Cho Ku Nu more special by removing repeater crossbows from the core crossbowmen. They'll do fine with ordinary crossbows.
- Elementals could be skirmishers, just like wood elves forest spirits. It always bugs me when monsters or ethereal beings have to move in perfect formations. It just doesn't look right.

- Noted, peasants will get the option for light armor and shields, and probably have their name changed to levies or conscripts.
- Noted, crossbowmen will get the option for light armor.
- I feel that people don't quite understand what Cho Ku Nu bring to the table. Cho Ku Nu have a 4+ armor save against missile fire and a 3+ armor save in close combat. In addition they shoot just as hard as Dark Elves and can take a 50 pts magic banner. They are flat out one of the most versatile units in the game, you could take a massive unit of 24 and deploy them 12 x 2, reform as the enemy advances then stand and shoot before taking their charge with your 3+ armor save and still have significant static resolution. Cho Ku Nu represent the professional army of the Celestial Dragon Emperor and are an infantry option that has almost no parallel unit in Warhammer.
- Elementals not skirmishing is entirely a balance decision.


On Chariots & Cavalry
- I would give Tribal Archers either BS4 or +1 to hit, with an appropriate increase in point cost of course. Either because of superior archer skills or superior compound bows. Also, again, light armour. Aren't they meant to be based on the steppe peoples?
- Regarding chariots, I'm a bit conflicted. Chariots are -super awesome-, that's true, but it is rather strange that so many armies in Warhammer has them, as in reality, chariots got obsolete as soon as the stirrup was invented. No one ever used chariots after that, except for racing in Byzantium. This is a fantasy game, however, so it depends entirely on how much of a historical feel that you're after. In either case, you should write that the -stirrup- made the chariots see a steady decline, not the crossbows.
- I do feel, though, that light chariots in units infringe a little on Tomb Kings core 'thing'. Although, the Cathayan chariots aren't fast cavalry, correct me if I'm wrong, so I guess TK's still got that.
- One of the chariot crew should be able to have a halberd, or at least a spear. (A certain halberd-like weapon was very common both among infantry and chariot crew in chinese antiquity).
- Shouldn't cataphracts be able to have shields, or great weapons, or cathayan longswords? Overall I miss a bit of weapon options on your units.

- Tribal Archers are just cheap core fast cav, that's more than the Empire or Bretonnia have (Special Fast Cav, although Empire's is one of the best in the game).
- I keep reading everywhere that the crossbow is what reduced chariots in China; the invention of the stirrup makes plenty of sense though.
- Correct the TK chariots are Fast Cav, humans really don't need fast cav light chariots because they can flee, rally, then move and shoot next turn. I guess I could turn these into normal units of chariots instead it just feels like it is more hitting power than I want to give the army in its core selection slots. I am open to suggestions on how to alleviate this without crossing over into TK territory too much, and without creating a mass MSU chariot army.
- I understand the halberd thing, there are some pretty sweet ones depicted in the Jet Li movie Hero, but the chariots already do D3 impact hits at Strength 4 and have 4 Strength 3 attacks - additionally I can't find any sweet halberd models.
- Good call on the Cataphracts, we'll make them 15 points base, give them greatswords (1 pt), cathayan longswords (1 pt), or lances (2 pts) for options.


On Monsters
- Dragons should really be Yang and Phoenixes Yin, that's much more in theme with chinese mythology.

Damnit. That's unfortunate those were the two units I thought were just about perfect - I was using Yin Yang as more a dark/light opposition rather than female/male.


On Magic Items

The items all seem good, but I think a little to many of the weapons are cathayan longswords. A spear or halberd would fit in. I also think there's a little to few choices that costs 20 points; you need those if a hero pick one for 30 points, which there are plenty of.

I see, I'll add in a few Halberd, Great Weapons, and Swords, and some 20 point choices.


On Lores
How have you reasoned when you chose what lores the Wu Jen can take? To my mind, all the Lores in the Basic Rulebook seems entirely appropriate för a chinese fantasy feel.

I picked the brightest two and the darkest two as kind of a light/dark opposition like a yin yang.


On Making This Army Empire
Also, I think you should have regular soldiers as a core choice. I realize you had some kind of vision by not having that, but it doesn't feel at all chinese to me - Chinas greatest asset (and its greatest sorrow) has always been its limitless supply of manpower. You've catered to that partly of course, with the peasants, but I still think Cathay should have some kind of 'ordinary' soldiers, you know, the standard WS3, Light armour + shield + spear/halberd-stuff.

I would also add some kind of bow-armed skirmishers with the woodsman rule. I don't really know why, it just seems to feel...right. Call them 'Mercenary Bandits', 'Militia Hunters' or something. At least a unit of skirmishing bandits of some kind would really fit the feel, as bandits and outlaws are frequent characters in chinese fiction, both old and new.

We'll give peasants the option of taking armor and shields. This gives them a 4+ armor save in close combat if they do not use their spears. It'll make them 5 points though so gives them a different role than expendable infantry. Skirmishers don't need the woodsmen rule btw.


On War Mammoths & Other Stuff

And just some ideas about more 'fantastic' units:
- There could be a kind of beastmaster that drives angry tigers or bears towards the foe.
- Weretigers maybe?
- Rocket Launchers
- Footmen armed with primitive firearms, something like Ogre Leadbelchers.
- Some kind of War altar/War shrine-esque thing.
- Ogre Maneaters
- Qilin cavalry (that's sort of a chinese unicorn)
- Terracotta golems
- Undead terracotta warriors
- Fanatics (something like Empire flagellants; a band of outcast peasants that have worked up a frenzy about one issue or the other. I could even stomach if they know Kung fu; just look at the Boxer rebellion. The An Lushan rebellion would be a better case study as Warhammer goes, though).
- War Mammoths have a place in every army, 'cuz (woolly) mammoths are the single most awesome creature that has ever existed.

- Beastmasters are too Dark Elf
- Weretigers, I just don't know about humans hanging out with Weretigers.
- A Siege Crossbow with a Powder Load is pretty close.
- Skirmishers with artillery dice fire was actually brainstormed about but would be covering too similar a role to crossbows.
- A War Altar like thing sounds kind of cool but Rare Slots are filled and I'd like to avoid religious zealots dominating Cathay
- I'll add in a Dogs of War entry once the list stands well on its own.
- More cav takes the same role as Cataphracts so Quilin are out (it actually came down between Cataphracts and Foo Lions for the heavy cav role)
- Terracotta/Jade Golems/Giants sound pretty cool but they don't have models, and if someone wanted to convert them they could use the normal Giant rules.
- Undead and humans generally don't mix; I would find it unnerving to realize a commander probably doesn't care about my life because if I died I'd just become an undead warrior. That is creepy as hell.
- Haha, War Mammoths are more suited to Chaos.


On New Characters

And ideas about additional character choices:
- Torturemaster (I've no idea about what he does, but the chinese culture have always been really good at bisarre and brutal punishments. In any case, imagine a stern mandarin with a 'toolbox'. Maybe he keeps the peasants in line? Might otherwise be a good concept for a special character).
- Demonhunter (Some kind of combat mage, lore of Light or Fire...like the guy in A Chinese Ghost Story)
- Grand Strategist (A rather weak type, as characters go, that does something interesting leadership-wise, think Sun Zi. Might otherwise be a good concept for a special character).
- Master Engineer (more useful than the Empire one, look at the Dwarf version).
- Barbarian general (just the guy that led the tribal archers to Cathay, where they took hire as mercenaries).
- Paymaster (keeps the tribal units in check)
- A spoiled princess in a palanquin. She should be a special character though. I've no idea what she does on the battlefield, though. Maybe she's got a -really- badass bodyguard?

Grand Strategist sounds AWESOME, definitely a special character idea. A spoiled Princess with some BAMF guards also sounds like an interesting idea. A Barbarian Hero definitely seems possible too.


On Yin/Yang

I would like some unit/character with a Yin/Yang-ability or spell. Yin makes a unit Stubborn or Immune to Psychology, Yang gives a unit Frenzy or Hatred.

Well...hope that helped. Keep us updated, I'm curious to see how this project turns out!

Usually if we do Yin/Yang stuff it has to do with using existing Lores, because it keeps it simple and immediately identifiable to people playing against the list.

Thanks a ton, I appreciate the extensive feedback!

kikkoman
11-12-2008, 12:15
on pre-existing fluff...

there's those cathayans who got lost and fought lizardmen, they used a large amount of crossbows, with shields. Their commander learned martial arts techniques, he did a wall-jump to escape a holding cell the lizardmen stuck him in.

When the men were going to be sacrificed by lizardmen, they prepared to meet death with dignity 'as brave warriors of the emperor'

when the lizardmen spotted his dragon tattoo, they stopped and the skinks began talking amongst themselves ('is it related to sotek/hotek?' they thought)

Ogre Kingdoms
Great Maw meteor predicted by Cathayan Astromancers, Lore of Heavens seems popular
Cathayan longswords used by maneaters (giant katana type blades)
the symbol of the 4 armed god of the far east disrupts the power of chaos (causes fear in chaos units or lowers their Ld)

Skaven
Eshin learned their fighting skills in the far east in Cathay
Eshin use fighting claws and throwing stars
Eshin employs ninja style scouts and elite assassins (ws8 for master assassins)
Eshin assassins use smoke bombs (must roll 4+ to pursue)

High Elves
High Elves trade with Cathay for spices and silk (what would they trade in return, magic stuff?)
'Tower of the Sun' is an elven citadel in what would be Korea I believe

Dark Elves
Black Arks raid the coastline of Cathay (historic connection to Wokuo pirates?)
use repeater crossbows (technology looted from dark elves? traded from elves?)


Empire
Cathayan merchants can be seen in the major trade cities
Cathayans gave a fireworks performance before

Beasts of Chaos
mention of jaguar and tigermen of the far east
tigermen of Ind sometimes fight alongside humans, revered as holy?


Real Life:
The medieval stereotype for Cathay, from the view of Europeans, is being fabulously wealthy. Marco Polo bragging about how awesome it was, Geoffery Chaucer writing about how great Genghis Khan was, Catholics getting smarmy responses to conversion, etc. Grass is greener mentality I guess

Rodman49
11-12-2008, 16:26
This post is fantastic man! Thanks a ton for consolidating the info.


on pre-existing fluff...

there's those cathayans who got lost and fought lizardmen, they used a large amount of crossbows, with shields. Their commander learned martial arts techniques, he did a wall-jump to escape a holding cell the lizardmen stuck him in.

When the men were going to be sacrificed by lizardmen, they prepared to meet death with dignity 'as brave warriors of the emperor'

Awesome, this sounds like good justification for the Cho-Ku-Nu unit. I'll bump their leadership up to 8.



Ogre Kingdoms
the symbol of the 4 armed god of the far east disrupts the power of chaos (causes fear in chaos units or lowers their Ld)

Hmm, does it mention the god? Anyone want to come up with a name if one doesn't exist? I feel some sweet magic items coming from this.



Skaven
Eshin learned their fighting skills in the far east in Cathay
Eshin use fighting claws and throwing stars
Eshin employs ninja style scouts and elite assassins (ws8 for master assassins)
Eshin assassins use smoke bombs (must roll 4+ to pursue)

If Ninjas don't make it back into the list I'm going to chalk up the general Cathay-Ninja connection as a general misconception by western visitors.



High Elves
High Elves trade with Cathay for spices and silk (what would they trade in return, magic stuff?)
'Tower of the Sun' is an elven citadel in what would be Korea I believe

Dark Elves
Black Arks raid the coastline of Cathay (historic connection to Wokuo pirates?)
use repeater crossbows (technology looted from dark elves? traded from elves?)

Hmm, seems like the High Elf fluff might be justification for some High Elf Magic Gear. Dark Elves got repeater crossbow technology from Cathay I believe.



Empire
Cathayan merchants can be seen in the major trade cities
Cathayans gave a fireworks performance before

I see the weaponization of gunpowder as more a western (Empire/Dwarf) thing, Cathay probably doesn't use firearms as much because they don't find hordes of Chaos or Bretonnian Knights.



Beasts of Chaos
mention of jaguar and tigermen of the far east
tigermen of Ind sometimes fight alongside humans, revered as holy?

OoO, that sounds BADASS. Almost makes me want to put the Cathay book on hold and do an Ind one. I was thinking Hoplites, Phalanges, Skirmishers, Giant Elephants, Naga, and now Tigermen?!?! Jesus that would be a cool army.

Rodman49
15-12-2008, 07:13
Alright guys, thanks for a TON of awesome feedback, a new version has been updated. I've taken into account most of people's suggestions - here's a recap:

1. Grum - Removal of Ninjas
2. Grum - New Artillery (Arbalest)
3. Grum - Monks Skirmishing
4. Kikko - Monks fighting unarmed
5. Ymir - Weapon Options
6. Ymir - Lots of Points Reductions

More stuff will probably be adjusted from your suggestions (especially Kikko and Ymir). The list has been updated to version 4. Most of the units are ready to roll but feel free to give me ideas about options or points values. Otherwise I need some help with Magic Item feedback (the last few pages).

robtheguru
17-12-2008, 05:35
I like the look of this list, would be great to try it out. I would suggest making the wood elemental flammable, just seems to make sense.

I'm going to assume you know about Dynasty Warriors/Romance of the Three Kingdoms. Have you considered adding the option to make your general allied to one of the factions from it?

-Only the general of the army may take an upgrade
-If an upgrade is taken, only "human" models may be used(including chariots etc)
-Each character type has 1 upgrade for each faction

Shu(Green):

-Dynasty Warrior: One man army - Renound for vast numbers of extremely powerful individuals, the armies of Shu are widely feared. As such, only the mightiest of enemies will fight them in a challenge. Only enemy Lords and Heroes may challenge and accept a challenge from the general. Furthermore, enemy units only ever get combat resolution from the number of wounds they inflict. Banners, ranks, flank charges etc are ignored. 75 points


-Jiangjun: Blood Bond - The Jiangun is close to each and every member of his army, as if a giant extended family. To represent this, any unit may use the generals Leadership for any test that requires the use of his Leadership. Furthermore, any unit within 6" of the general is unbreakable. 50 points


-Wu Jen Lord: Ultimate Strategist - A strategist of unparralleled skill, he is able to make his opponant fall into his traps with ease. Do not roll to determine sides, you may choose. Also, your opponant must deploy first. If your opponant finishes deploying first, he does not receive +1 to his first turn roll. 75 points


I'll do some for Wu and Wei if you want, if not no worries. I'm rather bored so thought i'd try and contribute lol. As I said, hopefully i can try the list out soon.

therisnosaurus
18-12-2008, 07:28
y'know, I woulda thought people had given up by now. But in any case, since my faithful dogsbodies haven't brought it up,

http://warseer.com/rules/warhammer_fantasy_rules/warhammer_armies_cathay_fan_project

Look, I can appreciate the effort you've put into this, particularly the formatting, which rarely gets enough attention, but all I see here is another warhammer armies: china. No fantastic inspiration, nothing to truly link it to warhammer cannon, no thought to game balance or uniqueness of play. Units are inserted where they are relevant without thought to their role other than this is infantry, this is cavalry, this is artillery, this is a mage etc. Units are essentially named as their historical counterparts, as-per chinese.

You need, if you really want to excell, to put in a LOT more thought. Go and read the GW army books. All of them. Sit in the corner of the store if you have to. Study the naming conventions. Study the arming conventions, study the distribution of power and the restrictions thereupon. Study the distribution of points and where they are enforced and where they are made optional and consider why. Once you understand all this, then choose to comply with, or break those rules in the understanding, and be aware of WHY you are following or breaking them.

I really am looking forward to someone putting together a great cathay list, my team's one is starting to look dated, but stuff like this makes me wonder if it'll ever happen... c'mawwwwn warseer, you can do better

(sorry if I sound a bit up myself, it's not intended, my list has many flaws and I'm cool with people doing historical interps, it's just EVERY cathay list I see is the same more or less, and they ALL would be utterly boring to play...)

Condottiere
18-12-2008, 07:37
It's a learning process, and feedback helps.

therisnosaurus
18-12-2008, 09:51
indeed.

for OBJECTIVE stuff, here's some initial suggestions:

1) GW almost never uses languages other than english, or designations other than english ones. if you are following GW's trends names should always be composed of

a) english generics (warrior, soldier, priest, knight, dragon)

b) descriptives (gutter runners, marauders, glade guard, chaos spawn)

c) Completely made up words (Jezzails, Slaan, Varghulf etc)

If you want to use a fancy name for something, use a unit champion, that is where GW traditionally put historical references. (gallant, seneschal etc)

2) Currently your list lacks anything to make it's playstyle unique. It is bland and has little character, opportunity to make a powerful or dynamic list without min/maxing, or reason to collect this army instead of any other one. this is important because

a) even if you don't want to make something of equal standard, if you actually want people to use your list, it should do something that makes them want to above other lists ASSUMING they have no innate bias towards cathay. Take a complete rookie, show him all other warhammer army books and cathay. If, objectively, cathay is not solid competition, you're already on the road to failure

b) It means that what you've done can just be done with existing rules, making yours useless. Ancient china can already be faked with empire or dogs of war, legitmate armies inside the rules. If you want people to go out of their way to procure games with people willing to play this army, you'd better make sure you're doing a damn sight better htan that

c) You'll actually get a whole lot more out of it in any case

To achieve this, well...

a) the easiest thing (and the hardest) is a simple paradigm shift. Instead of building the army around units, build the units around the army. Brainstorm how you want the army to play- thematically, tactically and strategically. For example, bretonnia would be 'strong, fast and durable core supported by weaker auxilliaries. Overall power offset by high costs and unit restrictions'

Once you've figured this out and set it up, make sure it's not the same as any of the other lists around. Then start to build it. As you add each unit, consider how it fits into that initial mission statement. If it is essential, perhaps offer a discount or enforce it being taken (GW is moving towards the former over the latter), If it is rare or provides strengths the army normally doesn't have (treemen for wood elves, graveguard/tombguard for undead etc) overcost it slightly, or provide restrictions- one unit of x per unit of y etc)

b) take your time, think it out. Play games on paper, play games in your head. Make an army list and figure out how you would beat it if someone turned up against you.

c) the true, fine art of building GW lists lies in reconciling
i) game balance
ii) uniqueness
iii) historical background
and
iv) GW canon

If you can create a list that stands up in all four departments, THEN I'll start nitpicking. Till then, good luck, have fun. It took me four and a bit years with a small team to even get close to a decent list. I'm sure you can do it better, but you'll have to work at it :P

Rodman49
20-12-2008, 10:30
Hey thanks for the feedback therisnosaurus! I've read your army list before and while it far outstrips most other Cathay made fanbooks I thought it was a bit too dated for the trends of 7th edition. Also I feel that your armybook is actually too broad in scope (being an overall representation of the east). Thanks for taking the time to read the list and give your opinions. I'll respond to your comments one at a time.


Naming Conventions
Hmm, good call here - I assume the big culprit you see in our list is Cho-Ku-Nu and maybe Cataphracts. I believe everything else in the list falls under generic (peasant, arbalest, bolt thrower, monsters and elementals) or descriptive (tribal units, battle monks, and imperial units). I'll have to whip up a new name then . . .


Game Balance
In your first post you mention game balance and how you cannot see it in my list. Can you cite a specific example of something that is not balanced in this list? I don't quite understand what in this list makes it seem over or underpowered to you. Is it only the 4+ save on the Imperial Chariot? Battle Monks for only 12 points? A unit strength 5 flying monster for only 220 points? Fast cavalry as core? Some combination of magic items? Your point may be valid but I need an example of what you think is wrong.


Playstyle and Uniqueness
One of your most valid points is that this list may "step on the toes" of the Empire and Dogs of War lists. So let's look at the Empire list (since DoW are largely considered obsolete and not competitive). If you had to pick the one defining element of an Empire army from a playstyle point of view what would it be? Static Resolution Melee Infantry (with detachments). You can play an Empire army in many ways, which is good design, but the focus of the army is the infantry.

So what's the defining element from this list's point of view? I would say Static Firepower. The army can be played much differently but it has line infantry who shoot as good as Dark Elves but have a 3+ save in close combat. An army can easily have 2 units of Cho-Ku-Nu who could hold their own in combat against most enemy infantry. Having said that you can still take an army made up mostly of Imperial Guard (for a stubborn horde) or you could take an all cavalry army, or even an army of chariots.

Maybe you disagree with this structure - it could be too close to Dark Elves or Wood Elves. I feel those two armies are much more of "no-touch" armies - armies that lack resilient units and have mobile firepower. Maybe even you think static firepower is too Dwarf or Empire in design. Well Dwarves lack any type of decent maneuver element, Empire on the other hand is similar but their firepower is not primarily anti-personnel or reliable. An Empire army is going to line up and shoot cannonballs at the big targets its infantry can't deal with and then fight out with the rest of the enemy. A Cathay army in contrast is going to attempt to Panic as many units as possible in order to mop of up the rest with maneuver elements. It's not as different as an Ogre army per say, but it is much different than an Empire or Dark Elf army (the two it is probably closest too). When you think of this army, think of the movie "Hero."



Historical Background
The big debate as always for Cathay lists - should it stick to a representation of the East in general or be more oriented towards Ancient China. I would prefer to make it orient more towards Ancient China so that a separate Nippon armylist could be created and function much differently - Cathay would focus on ranged firepower while Nippon would be more of elite melee warriors. Having said that an army can be based around Chinese Chariot armies very easily. I think the big things to take from the historical context are:
1. Repeater Crossbows
2. Chariots
3. Martial Arts
4. Yin/Yang


GW Canon
References to Canon in the army list:
1. Mark of Tzeentch (7th Edition Warriors of Chaos)
2. Martial Arts -> Battle Monks (White Dwarf 280)
3. Tiger Pelts -> Tiger Armor (White Dwarf 280)
4. 5 Elemental Types (Beasts in Velvet and Silver Nails)

There could be more but those are the main ones off the top of my head. Repeater crossbows are associated with Cathay also but I can't remember the reference document off the top of my head. A few things got left out like Foo Lions but that was because their role was already filled (Cataphracts).


GW Armybooks

Brainstorm how you want the army to play- thematically, tactically and strategically. For example, bretonnia would be 'strong, fast and durable core supported by weaker auxilliaries. Overall power offset by high costs and unit restrictions'

Once you've figured this out and set it up, make sure it's not the same as any of the other lists around. Then start to build it. As you add each unit, consider how it fits into that initial mission statement. If it is essential, perhaps offer a discount or enforce it being taken (GW is moving towards the former over the latter), If it is rare or provides strengths the army normally doesn't have (treemen for wood elves, graveguard/tombguard for undead etc) overcost it slightly, or provide restrictions- one unit of x per unit of y etc)

Hmm interesting that you provide Bretonnia as an example here. I think it is one of the worst army lists in terms of design. What is the point of an army list if you put 1+ and 0-1 units in it? You might as well build the army for the player rather than give them options. 0-1 units in particular are a huge NO-NO. If a designer makes a unit 0-1 then they have utterly failed in designing that unit. That means the designer knows "this unit is too good for its point cost/slot so we'll only make it so you can have one." A 0-1 unit is generally a TAKE ONE notice. In general I use the Wood Elf, Empire, and Dark Elf books as the models for good armybooks. They provide multiple play styles and very few "never take" units. The books I avoid designing like are Bretonnia and High Elves - because of huge glaring obsolete units and horrid army flexibility.

therisnosaurus
21-12-2008, 07:46
Hey thanks for the feedback therisnosaurus! I've read your army list before and while it far outstrips most other Cathay made fanbooks I thought it was a bit too dated for the trends of 7th edition. Also I feel that your armybook is actually too broad in scope (being an overall representation of the east). Thanks for taking the time to read the list and give your opinions. I'll respond to your comments one at a time.

good :). Like I said, I really am hoping someone will come up with something a bit more contemporary


Maybe you disagree with this structure - it could be too close to Dark Elves or Wood Elves. I feel those two armies are much more of "no-touch" armies - armies that lack resilient units and have mobile firepower. Maybe even you think static firepower is too Dwarf or Empire in design. Well Dwarves lack any type of decent maneuver element, Empire on the other hand is similar but their firepower is not primarily anti-personnel or reliable. An Empire army is going to line up and shoot cannonballs at the big targets its infantry can't deal with and then fight out with the rest of the enemy. A Cathay army in contrast is going to attempt to Panic as many units as possible in order to mop of up the rest with maneuver elements. It's not as different as an Ogre army per say, but it is much different than an Empire or Dark Elf army (the two it is probably closest too). When you think of this army, think of the movie "Hero.".

Ideally you want to be going for *minimum* as different as ogres, really. This is less a theoretical thing and more a practical one. If your list doesn't provide gameplay wise something really, really special, people aren't going to play it. My original work on cathay had a list that was far more conventional and used conventional tactics, stratagems and so forth. Nobody cared. They only really started getting interested when you could take a selection of any random 6 or so units and make an army that would play like nothing else around, which is what I'm more or less most proud of in my own work.

From what I've seen of your list, it's simply too generic. only the chokunu Rxbows and the monks are a really interesting tactical choice, but they have little to complement them. Everything else is just 'generic human version of x'- chaos chariots, tomb king chariots, bodyguard unit, slave unit, heavy cavalry, light cavalry, bolt thrower, unridden monster etc. The special rules related to them are just cleaned out versions of what every other version of said unit would normally have You've even got the elementals, which can be 4 different kinds of 'generic 3 wound monster' all at once :P

Now, that'd be fine if you were designing a ruleset. You've pretty much covered every single possible unit role other than flyer units (even there you have a ghetto flyer unit in the form of the phoenix), but there's the problem.

It can do everything cheaply and en-masse, and nothing really well. Who the hell wants to play that? I mean, it'll be balanced, well, because the list technically lacks nothing, but has no strengths. But that's not game balance. That's ravening hordes dogs of war. Ogre kingdoms is game balance, Wood elves is game balance- lists that, on paper at first glance would be overwhelmingly strong (ogres- I still remember those discussions ^^) or overwhelmingly weak (wood elves, before we heard about the points costs) but actually are both strong, interesting, competitive lists.

I admit, I'm a sucker for more technically challenging lists, but that's because warhammer does not NEED any more empire or O&G-esque lists. We have the jack of all trades already, we don't need another one. So far, these are the other archetypes we have filled

the jack of all trades (orcs and goblins) - everything you can do I can do better
the army (empire) - welcome to a lesson in combined arms
The horde (skaven)- lots of everything, roll over the top
The lance (bretonnia)- spike through the heart
The bludgeon (WoC)- splatter everything that gets in your way
The dancer (wood elves) - float like a butterfly, sting like a bee
The rock (dwarves)- we shall not be moved
The reaper (dark elves) - slaughter before we are slaughtered
The tarpit (vampire counts) - the longer it goes on, the more dead there are
The trickster (tomb kings) - Look who's behind you.
the swarm (beasts of chaos)- oh my god they're EVERYWHERE
the elite (lizardmen)- reliable, with a hint of kick
the glass cannon (high elves)- will rip you a new one but the moment you apply pressure they shatter.


Daemons fit no real particular role that I can think of, as they're so diverse, essentially four armies in one, one of the reasons they're so darn powerful. Of course, this all depends on army composition, but the 'standard' for each army fits the above, as this is where the designers have placed most emphasis. It's quite possible to make a 'rock' style wood elf army, or a 'dancer' style lizardmen army, as every army has strong subdomains. But it's equally impossible to make a 'rock' style skaven army or a 'dancer' style dwarf army- every list equally has subdomain weaknesses. Your list, however, has no strong domain, and no real strong or weak subdomains either. Until you find something at heart outside all the above domains, (plus subdomains to make the list a bit more interesting) you'll be running up hill to make me happy.

To show I'm not speaking out of my ****, here are the ones from my cathay

primary domain- Contrast- The best of both ends.
Strong subs: the dancer, close range shooting, magic
Weak subs: the rock, the bludgeon, long ranged shooting.

The good, interesting units you have at the moment are

the dynasty warrior
The chokunu
the battle monks
the phoenix (to an extent, at least)

They have a distinct role, but also a trick or two up their sleeves. They are unique enough that they can't really be faked in any other list and they fit the background very well. Unfortunately, pretty much everything else lets you down.

Now having said all that instead of going onto the next part of the crit, I'm going to leave it for now and instead ask a question- From all of that, can you give me

- a primary domain for the army
- 1/2 strong subdomains for the army
- 1/2 weak subdomains for the army

The primary domain SHOULD NOT BE the same as (or a very close derivative of) any other army. If you like hero, my first thought would be to be 'the gunline', but that'd be a hella fun one (by which I mean near impossible) to make fun to play and play against. I'll leave it up to you. It's not easy to do, pretty much all the basic ones have been taken.

Once you've worked out that out, justify the inclusion of all characters and units in the context of all 3-5 domains and sub domains. Even wizards. 'because everyone else has one' IS NOT VALID. Fluff justification is somewhat valid, but it should ideally be backed up by strong gameplay reasons. By the end of it, you'll want to justify every single little unit, ability, option, magic item, spell etc against these domains, but for now, just the units.

This, btw, is not just me being a tard, this is sterling design process as brought to you by the likes of games workshop, blizzard, irrational games, big ant and several other well known games design companies and theorists. I'm studying games design, into my third year of university. I take this **** seriously :P


Hmm interesting that you provide Bretonnia as an example here. I think it is one of the worst army lists in terms of design. What is the point of an army list if you put 1+ and 0-1 units in it? You might as well build the army for the player rather than give them options. 0-1 units in particular are a huge NO-NO. If a designer makes a unit 0-1 then they have utterly failed in designing that unit. That means the designer knows "this unit is too good for its point cost/slot so we'll only make it so you can have one." A 0-1 unit is generally a TAKE ONE notice. In general I use the Wood Elf, Empire, and Dark Elf books as the models for good armybooks. They provide multiple play styles and very few "never take" units. The books I avoid designing like are Bretonnia and High Elves - because of huge glaring obsolete units and horrid army flexibility.

Yeah, you got me there, bretonnia has some stupid restrictions on it. The whole 0-x restriction system was outdated yeeears ago, but that doesn't mean that restrictions themselves are. GW have found better, more scaleable ones since then- dwarf longbeards, 'don't count as core' units, no more x than y units.You are correct that HE, DE and co are very clean, versatile books, but they're not the best for balance. Both are sadly quite abuseable, which I try to combat. GW, I think, is relying too much on 'gamer spirit' to prevent list abuse, something that will not hold up in competitive tournament play. But that's just me bitching. Over to you

kikkoman
21-12-2008, 08:30
Here's something that might help. Cavalry in the Far East, in historic and heroic sense, tended to be archers. Heavy cavalry did exist, but they tended to carry bows too. This does not mean they didn't fight in hand to hand, no, but a charge was almost always preceded by a shower of arrows.

So a archetypical Chinese cavalryman would be armed with something like...

heavy armor, halberd, longbow
barding and shield optional

here's an example from the Song dynasty (about 1200's)
http://chinese-armour.freewebspace.com/images/songcalvary2.jpg

here's some Ming cavalry
http://chineseswords.freewebspace.com/photo5.html
notice their two handed bladed weapons and bows
I don't think I've ever seen a depiction of armored cavalry without bows.

http://img211.imageshack.us/img211/2113/atlilar01a9vg.jpg
image of dueling cavalry. Cavalry combat in China, at least in stories, is more like a dogfight, a duel on horseback, than two sides charging at full tilt.





and images of Chinese gunpowder weapons
http://www.act.com.sg/dominion/images/woodcut-ming5barrelgun.jpg
http://img3.pcpop.com/upimg3/2007/11/21/0004375031.jpg
http://img3.pcpop.com/upimg3/2007/11/21/0004375032.jpg
dude with a multi barrel shielded gun
it's a rotary gun. Range of about 180 meters

http://www.act.com.sg/dominion/images/sketch-mingbreechloadingrifle.jpg
breech loading cannon on a tripod

http://www.pkucn.com/attachments/month_0504/uC8bO1o6zD97780rDVvcq508M=_eRtqkBCqGSO3.jpg
Rocket battery

http://img.qihoo.com/qhimg/bbs_img/0_0/1/336/295/a5d59f.jpg
infantryman with a rocket launcher

http://img3.pcpop.com/upimg3/2007/11/21/0004375041.jpg
crow bomb

http://img3.pcpop.com/upimg3/2007/11/21/0004374854.jpg
soldier in brigandine armor with 3-eyed gun

http://img3.pcpop.com/upimg3/2007/11/21/0004375004.jpg
multi stage rocket. You first ignite the four smaller rockets, when those rockets burn up they light the fuse for the rockets inside the vessel's mouth, spewing them out. This was a naval weapon.

http://img.qihoo.com/qhimg/bbs_img/0_0/1/336/286/105e02.jpg
cavalryman with a fire lance. Basically a spear with a package that spews fire at the end

Also, halberds, glaives are a typically heroic weapon for Chinese commanders (most famously Guanyu), access to halberds for your Lords and Heroes would be reasonable


as for a unique spin on Cathay, I would say that nearly every unit has a ranged weapon. This would make them pretty distinct from other WHF armies where almost everyone is specialised into shooty or choppy.

Look at this swordsman, that big choppy two hander he's got. What's that at his waist? A crossbow
http://thomaschen.freewebspace.com/images/mingsword888.jpg


here's a great website to check out for info and pictures, inspiration
http://thomaschen.freewebspace.com/photo2.html


Ming Dynasty two-handed swords (probably early to mid-17th century) known then as the "changdao" but are more popularly known today as the "Miao Dao". These blades have ridged cross-sections and were obviously inspired by the large Japanese swords (known as "nodachi") used by the Japanese pirates raiding the Chinese south-eastern coast. As for the diagrams showing the swordsmen, they are from a Ming martial arts manual published in 1621.

These large 2-handed sabers were first used by the Northern Border Troops under the command of Ming General Qi Jiguang in the late 1560s-70s to deal with Mongol cavalry, and remained in use right up to the late Ming (1620s-1644). At that time, these sabers had an overall specified length of 1.95 meters. General Qi, who lived from 1528-1587, had written the influential training manual "Lian Bing Shi Ji" while he was the commanding and training officer for several northern units bordering Mongolia. Commanding about 100,000 men, some of the best troops of the Ming empire, he had successfully deterred Mongol aggression at the border for over 10 years. The structural components he had setup to deal with the formidable Mongol cavalry armies were to consist of 4 parts:

1) Combat Wagon Force
2) Infantry Force
3) Cavalry Force
4) Baggage Supply Train

A brief description of General Qi's Commando Team:
The Combat Wagon Force and Baggage Supply Train are equipped with large and medium caliber cannons. The "Commando Team" is the non-artillery combat component of the Combat Wagon Force and uses a wagon as a large mobile armoured platform. It consists of 8 men -- 4 musketeers (soldiers armed with Chinese-made Portuguese-style matchlocks) individually equipped with the Miao Daos, 2 musketeers both equipped with shield and single-handed saber, and 2 more soldiers both equipped with trident polearms and fire-arrows (arrows driven by gunpowder-propelled rockets).

Upon contacting the enemy, the wagons are to be setup in a rectangular formation and all personnel are to withdraw within this defensive perimeter. After the cannons, muskets and fire-arrows are fired first at long range against the Mongols, the Commando Team would park their long range weapons inside the wagon, then move out of the defensive perimeter and deploy in formation, using their Miao Daos, sabers and shields, plus the trident polearms for close-quarters combat.

As mentioned earlier, the Combat Wagon Force and Baggage Supply Train are equipped with large and medium caliber cannons. General Qi stipulates that for non-artillery soldiers, almost all soldiers specifically equipped with the musket were to be issued with the Miao Dao as a standard issue close-quarters weapon.

The percentage of non-artillery soldiers in the Combat Wagon Force and Baggage Supply Train equipped with this musket/Miao Dao combo (ie those who are not manning the cannons) is 50%.

Another 50% of the Infantry Force are also equipped with the combo. As for the Cavalry Force, the muskets/Miao Dao takes up 20%.


another thing Chinese do often is combined arms units, like mentioned above
two greatswordsmen to deal damage, defended by two swordn'shieldsman, with two trident users to entangle the enemy
and each of them carry a ranged weapon too (which is also mixed, guns and rockets)

That above could be a special units choice, skirmishers with mixed weapons and ranged weapons.

It's almost like a 40k squad in WHFB

to give you an idea of how this could work, here's a quick example


mainstay infantry

crossbowmen
either sword/shield or halberds
bowmen
shield+swords or spears

light cavalry
light armor, bow, spear option, shield option

heavy cavalry
heavy armor, bow, cathay longsword or halberd, barding option, shield option

elite infantry
heavy armor, cathay longsword or great weapon and bows/crossbows/guns

playstyle: you dont have any units that spike through everything (no lances) in one blow, what you do have is an army that will steadily wear down the foe with ranged fire before closing in with a steady advance of the firing infantry and fast moving cavalry.

defensively, charging the crossbow/bow/gunners may stop them from shooting, but now you're fighting halberdiers/swordsman/greatswords

con: lacking in focused specialists. You'll be paying for halberds while shooting, and bows while in close combat. Lack of units that can turn the tide with a single charge.

UltimateNagash
21-12-2008, 14:05
Elementals - do they flee or not? As they take a Break test. Doesn't say whether they flee or not...

Personally I think the Lore would need changing quite ALOT... I'll leave some ideas when I'm back from shopping

Oh, and needs exploding crossbow bolts :D

Ymir
21-12-2008, 14:47
1) GW almost never uses languages other than english, or designations other than english ones. if you are following GW's trends names should always be composed of

a) english generics (warrior, soldier, priest, knight, dragon)

b) descriptives (gutter runners, marauders, glade guard, chaos spawn)

c) Completely made up words (Jezzails, Slaan, Varghulf etc)

I beg to differ.

If 'Ushabti', 'Shaggoth' and 'Lammasu' is okay, that should also be true for chu-ko-nu, etc.

(And Rodman49, 'Cataphract' is definitely okay, linguistically speaking. It's not entirecly correct to use that word when refering to chinese heavy cavalry, though - it applies only to Central Asian/Near Eastern cultures, and to some extent the Roman and Byzantine empires).

As to whether (how do you spell that?) the list is to 'bland' compared to other Warhammer armies, that's up to you to decide, of course. I don't think so, and would play against it for sure, as it has a great mix of various elements that seems to make it fun to fight. Therisnosaurus certainly have some valid points, though; it wouldn't be wrong to give the army some central 'theme', (as long as that theme doesn't rest to heavily on bad clichés about chinese history (i.e, the warrior monks :rolleyes:)).

And to Kikkoman: That applies to asian cavalry in general; just look at the mongols, the timurids, the persians, etc. However, shooting a -longbow- from horseback wouldn't really be possible, better then to give the Cathayans some composite bow with slighly different characteristics. If I remember correctly, eastern asian composite bows were more powerful than western european longbows, but couldn't shoot as far. It might also have been the other way around, though.

therisnosaurus
21-12-2008, 23:16
I beg to differ.

If 'Ushabti', 'Shaggoth' and 'Lammasu' is okay, that should also be true for chu-ko-nu, etc.

Ushabti are a good one, didn't know that was a historical term. Of course, it was a historical term for tiny little statuettes, not giant guardian thingies, so there's be a fair bit of distortion from history> warhammer.

Shaggoth is addended to dragon ogre, again making it fairly easy to understand- we know it's some special kind of dragon ogre. it's also a monster, which do tend to buck the trend a little-

I should have probably added a fourth point that exempts common mythological creatures. Thus manticore, pegasus, griffon, hippogryph, lammasu, etc. I probably wouldn't be too fussed if you had a Qilin in there, but I'd be happier if you called it a Kirin (easier phoenetically) and even happier if you called it a Kyrin (slight distortion), but that is just me.

Nor do I really have much issue with cataphracts, I actually remember GW using that title in the lord of the rings game but they changed the spelling to kataphrakt or something. Cataphract is a term of common english, a generic per-se. Not quite as common, but still an overreaching term describing a fighting style, like legionnaire or musketeer.

Cho-ko-nu isn't english, nor is it generic. same for Wu-jen, etc.


As a further note, Kiko's excelent sourcing shows just how much more interesting stuff you can do. Looking at your list, and his suggestions I think a more specifically based historically imaged list has a good deal of potential, and he's pretty much given you the answer- bows, muskets, 3eyed guns, fire lances. On everything.


First stage is to drop the generics- all of them. I quite like the idea of the chos, so let's start with them

Make em core. Drop BS to 3, it's tempting to keep it 4, but they don't need it and it's really hard to justify in the background. perhaps give them a rule so they suffer no to hit penalty when standing and shooting to make that last volley count, or even that the second rank can fire their crossbows in combat (2str3 attacks, always hit on 4+ or something) to give the line unit a bit more oomph. (and maybe get that 'combined arms' feeling kiko was talking about)

Now there's an interesting line infantry unit- durable, solid in a fight vs non-elites, but will still get creamed by elites, can shoot, with good reach, but low power.

add bow armed light cav with more than the usual punch in CC, medium cav with good shooting, 3eye gunners (repeater hand guns?) as rare or special choices, arbalests to add some muscle to the str3 crossbows and bows, chariots for linebreakers and so forth

THERE you're starting to get an interesting list

Rodman49
22-12-2008, 05:04
Wow, a ton more feedback! Thanks a ton, I'll hit each topic as they were posted . . .

Playstyle

the jack of all trades (orcs and goblins) - everything you can do I can do better
the army (empire) - welcome to a lesson in combined arms
The horde (skaven)- lots of everything, roll over the top
The lance (bretonnia)- spike through the heart
The bludgeon (WoC)- splatter everything that gets in your way
The dancer (wood elves) - float like a butterfly, sting like a bee
The rock (dwarves)- we shall not be moved
The reaper (dark elves) - slaughter before we are slaughtered
The tarpit (vampire counts) - the longer it goes on, the more dead there are
The trickster (tomb kings) - Look who's behind you.
the swarm (beasts of chaos)- oh my god they're EVERYWHERE
the elite (lizardmen)- reliable, with a hint of kick
the glass cannon (high elves)- will rip you a new one but the moment you apply pressure they shatter.

Pretty spot on stuff right there (Lizards will probably change some with their new book and I feel that the elves are all fairly similar in design). I think making the army as different as Ogres are may be a touch too extreme. I think the goal should be to make the Cathay army as different to the Empire and Bretonnia as the Elven armies are from each other. With that said the Cathayan Army needs to be vastly different than The Army and The Lance. It will just need to be significantly different than the rest.

In addition we need to pick an archetype that leaves open further development for other eastern armies - Nippon and Ind in particular, since they aren't in the scale of this project. After all the suggestions from Kikko as TINS (therisnosaurus):

The Shade - Grind the opponent down with shooting before beating their depleted numbers in close combat. (Primary Domain)

Facilitate this by every unit having a ranged weapon and the entire army having a special rule that makes it so they never suffer a -1 to hit a charging opponent.

This is good in that its simple, emulates current army wide special rules trends, and is significantly different than any other army (most similar to WE but this is static shooting as opposed to mobile shooting).

I feel that The Horde and the The Dancer should be reasonable strong subdomains while their poor subdomain would be The Lance.


Army List Reorganization
Okay so given the new domain some units will probably have to go. Here is a list units that should be staying in with minor changes to fit the domain:

CORE
Cho-Ko-Nu (BS3, 25 pts Banner, 9 pts/model, more options, otherwise unchanged) (too expensive?)

SPECIAL
Battle Monks
Arbalest
Bolt Throwers (Change Powder Load name to Dragon Bolt basically rocket strapped to bolt)
Cataphracts (Fire Lances Option, Bows)

RARE
Phoenix
Oriental Dragon

That's 7 units that stay - I'll work on adding a few more from Kikko's post and uploading a new PDF. I'll aim for at least 12 units.


Other Questions
Ultimate Nagash the elementals would function much like daemons, ie if they lost a combat they would take a break test - however much they failed it by would be how many wounds they would take. They'll probably undergo a significant change though. Also what do not like about the Lore?

Condottiere
22-12-2008, 05:57
Bows require a certain degree of minimum space to draw and use. How many longbowmen have you seen on their knees drawing a bow?

UltimateNagash
22-12-2008, 09:52
OK, you will want to clarify that - because it sounds like they flee AND take wounds. Which doesn't sound right at all...

For the Lore, it's pretty much the old Lore of Tzeentch. Personally, I think it should be unique, and more about Summoning and junk. You know, one spell for each element perhaps, and then one Summoning spell as well.
5+) Fire: Straight up hitty spell
6+) Wood: Vines spring from the ground, slowing the unit down. Maybe stops them from marching and also counts them as moving for the purposes of shooting etc.
7+) Water: Maybe gives the unit Regeneration
8+?) Metal: Passive enemy disruption spell
10+) Earth: Make a wall of rock appear, blocking the enemy. Like the Ice Wall spell from the Kislev handout
11+) Air: High level spell, deals D3 wounds to all enemy units or something
Semi-completed/idea version:



1) Blaze of Fire 5+
Reaching out to the feral and wild Djinn of the flames, the Wu Jen calls them to lash out at those who oppose the armies of Cathy.
This is a magic missile with a range of 24" that causes D6 S4 flaming hits.


2) Growth of Wood 6+
The Wu Jen pleads with the Djinn within the ground, and if he successfully calls them, the vines and whips of the ground lash out and bind his enemies.
Choose a single enemy unit within 24" that is not in close combat. During your next Close Combat phase, the unit flees at half speed. During the unit's next Movement phase, the unit moves at half speed. During its Shooting phase it counts as moving at full distance, regardless of how far it moved. The spells effects end after the units Shooting Phase.
This spell has no effect on units with the Fly or Ethereal special rules.


3) Flow of Water 7+
Calling to the spirits of water, the Wu Jen implores them to aid with the recovery and health of his fellow warriors.
Choose a friendly unit, even in close combat. If that unit is within 18" of the caster, it has the Regenerate ability until the beginning of the next friendly Magic phase.


4) Strike of Air 8+
With deep breaths of power, the Wu Jen calls the Djinn of the air to unleash a typhoon of wind upon his foes, driving them back through sheer force.
This is a magic missile with a range of 18". Instead of causing wounds, it causes the enemy unit to be pushed back (away from the caster) D6+1". They may not move into contact with another unit (they stop 1" away from the unit). A unit hit by this spell may not march move in its next Movement phase.


5) Wall of Stone 11+
The Wu Jen implores to the spirits of the earth, calling them to rise and block the paths of their enemies.
This spell may be cast on any point within line of sight. Place a 5" by 1" strip on the battlefield, all of which must be within 24" of the caster. This is treated as impassable terrain and blocks line of sight. The Wall of Stone can be charged or targeted as if it were an Unbreakable enemy model, and is automatically hit in close combat. It is automatically destroyed if it is hit by any attack of Strength 5 or greater. All other attacks have no effect. Any unit that destroys the barrier in close combat may not overrun.


6) Wrath of Metal 11+
Calling to the spirits entrapped within the enemies weapons, the Wu Jen releases them, and in their anger, they twist and break their former prisons.
This spell can be cast on one enemy unit within 12" and in line of sight (even if in close combat). If successfully cast, no weapon bonuses or penalties apply to the affected unit for the remainder of the battle. A unit with missile weapons may not shoot for the duration of the entire battle. Affected units are assumed to use hand weapons instead, which may not be combined with shields. War machines and magic weapons cannot be affected by Wrath of Metal - only mundane weapons carried by troops.


And then a spell they all know which is a Summoning Pact spell. It deals D6 wounds to the unit they're with, and then creates that many minor Elementals. (They're weaker versions but have the same rules. Maybe statline something like this:
M:6 WS:4 BS:- S:4 T:3 W:1 I:3 A:1 Ld:8)

Other points:
I think the Shugenja should have options for varrying combat style: counts as armed with either two hand weapons, a great weapon or a single hand weapon that means all enemies fighting him are at -1WS. Also, maybe add a Lord version as well. Have Battle Monks having the combat styles as well
Drop Chi'an Chi completely
Explosive bolt crossbow unit :D I remember one from Age of Empires, they were fun
Conscripts have upgrade to Mayor, but their champion is called a Warden, right?
Why are Conscripts 20+? Surely it would be better to be 10+?
Also, just to point out, Bretonnian Men-at-arms suck stat wise and I rarely have seen them used. At all...
Why do Hordesmen have both bow and great weapon? Maybe just have a bow and upgrade to be given a great weapon
Arguebusiers are far too good. Daemons have a similiar rule and are just under twice the cost of these guys. Personally, I think 20 points a model and capped at 10 models...

therisnosaurus
22-12-2008, 11:51
Awesome, now we're getting somewhere. Here are a few considerations for you based on your choices

The shade: It's a good concept, similar to ye-olde-empire. The trick here is that it's also VERY boring to play with and against if you're not careful

Thus I like your choice of the dancer subdomain.

Dancer and horde, however, don't sit hand in hand. To play a dancer style list, you need room and small unit sizes to be able to avoid the enemy, and to be a horde you generally have a large footprint. I can see this working but you'll need to make the workhorses of the list cavalry as opposed to rank infantry. This is because cavalry, with their smaller unit footprint and greater maneuverability can still dance, quite well too.

Now let's have a look at the units:

CORE
Cho-Ko-Nu (BS3, 25 pts Banner, 9 pts/model, more options, otherwise unchanged) (too expensive?)
>> Fine here. Suits the shade primary and horde secondary. I would advise against giving any offensive weapons, have heavy armor standard with the shield being the option, dropping to 8ppm, 1 for shield.

SPECIAL

Battle Monks

>> also no problems. To make sure they fit the shade primary, I'd suggest they be more strongly defensive (T4, good ward save, perhaps magic resistance?) than offensive (1-2 str 4 attacks tops). They fit the dancer beautifully, but I think we can make an exemption for the horde one here, so keep unit sizes small

Arbalest
>> suits the shade, but not so much the horde or dancer. maybe make it a unit (horde) of micro artillery that are transported by horse/mythical creature (dancer). Much more unique and potentially tactically interesting

Bolt Throwers (Change Powder Load name to Dragon Bolt basically rocket strapped to bolt)
>> Not sold on these. as single choice, very powerful shot too. Strikes me as too lancy- directed, precise and good at utterly mauling a specific target, without the ability to cause widespread damage. I'd be inclined to remove it completely for now. We can think about the ramifications of that and how to compensate as we go. If you absolutely must have it, make it rare

Cataphracts (Fire Lances Option, Bows)
>> Good. I'd actually be inclined to make the cataphracts core (along with some light light cavalry to round out the core choices). Perhaps keep the fire lances for an elite light cavalry unit that goes in special. To make medium cav viable in the current warhammer rules you have to make them a) cheap and common or b) obscenely choppy. Since you can't do the latter (too lancey) you have to do the former.

RARE
Phoenix
>> no issues here again. maybe some ability tweaking but let's wait to see whether there any gaps that need filling when you've fleshed things out

Oriental Dragon
>> Not sold on him. A dragon is by very definition the epitome of concentrated devastation, not spread out weary downyness. However, I certainly think he's a valid inclusion in the list just from background considerations. I think going for the more traditional role of having him as a character mount is the safer route. if you really want him as a rare, however, we can work with that. To do so, we need to make him less lancey. Reducing is combat potency significantly is the easiest route. But since we're going for a shooting heavy list, perhaps giving him magical abilities that he can rain down on many nearby units may be an idea. Do your myth homework now, How do you think you could work it?


That's 7 units that stay - I'll work on adding a few more from Kikko's post and uploading a new PDF. I'll aim for at least 12 units.

Here are my suggestions, if you'd find them of use- feel free to ignore or use them as you see fit. Please don't just take them all and add them either. Think, select, justify. Make up your own. I'd also recommend making at least 5 core units, 8 potential special and 5 potential rare. you'll obviously cut that down to 3-4, 5-6 and 3-4 respectively, but more options is better than less at this stage of design. Don't worry, stuff'll get cut whatever you do, it's part of the process. I'd also advise against doing up a pdf. This is brainstorming, go with the flow, spit it out, arrange it, cut it, shape it and figure everything out, THEN clean it up and make it shiny :P. You'll waste a lot of time re-writing PDF's every iteration. If you want to see an example of a RD project I'm working on as an example, I can show you. it looks like a madman's babble and I've been cleaning it up for a week now :P

Core
Medium cavalry (heavy armor, non barded). regular bows, automatically rally if fleeing from a charge and don't cause panic (tactical withdrawl, herding enemy units but very weak in a direct confrontation)

Light cavalry: Bows, potential for spears or weak firelances. Perhaps an upgrade to short ranged blackpowder weapons to substantially increase firepower at ranges of 12" less (3 eyed guns? grenades?)

Special

Chariot: we want the chariots in there somewhere. basic horses, regular chariot, perhaps slightly ubered crew (firelances give massive bonus on charge?) Not strong enough to break a line unit solo, but perhaps a benefit for charging alongside another unit of cavalry to make for tactical play and set up thematic moments. Give em repeater crossbows too, to follow the shooting trend.

Elite light cav: Dancer cavalry capable of actually doing a good bit of damage in close combat. Still probably struggle with a frontal charge against heavy cavalry or infantry, but rip up if they get a flank charge at full strength.

counterpunch elite infantry: Your chance for the tiger armor- small unit of fairly mobile elite infantry with powerful short ranged weapons (same as core light cav perhaps) and glaives (noble weapons as suggested by kiko) Used to support cho-ko-nu and finish off crippled enemy, to fit the shade doctrine. Short range forces mobility and 'dancing'

Combined arms infantry: Not as uber individually as the above, but cheaper, more numerous and more versatile. Can throw out as much fire as cho-ko-nu (though perhaps with the ability to shoot down armor better?) but have more bite in CC. Still defensive, but perhaps 2 str 4 attacks per front rank model through some combination of polearms, special rules and assorted doodads.

Rare:

Up to you. This is your place for the wierd and awesome shiz you may well come up with, as well as any units you like for the fluff value but don't really fit the core domains.

Only one I can think of is to round out the cavalry a barded, tiger armor equipped unit of heavy cavalry, perhaps equipped with repeater crossbows and glaives. Very durable, but again, not able to punch like traditional heavy cav (only WS4, str 5 with the glaives, 1 at, but mebbe ld9 and BS4 as well. Almost a defensive heavy cavalry unit.)

Perhaps an Uber-arbalest, that actually fires multiple full size bolts.... If you're going to have a bolt thrower in, may as well make it special... Or maybe the explosive crossbow bolt unit suggested by UltimateNagash, perhaps doing multiple wounds to monsters, to give you something to hurt the big gribblies (which you're lacking a bit of right now)


Keep it up, you're really starting to get the idea :D. Just as suggestion, don't do characters for now, get your army up and a feel for how it plays and then figure out the characters to plug gaps and reinforce strengths. same for rare units- focus on nailing core and special. Remember to justify each selection around your domains.

robtheguru
22-12-2008, 12:05
How about taking a spin on the Terracotta army and having a Terracotta giant?

More along the lines of the TKs bone giant so having actual attacks rather than the randomness of the normal giant.

therisnosaurus
22-12-2008, 12:29
Possible. Great idea thematically, but not sure it fits in with the gameplay style or playtheme. Perhaps just terracotta warriors? would make for an ibrilliant rare choice if you could fit it in! (or even an interesting core choice if you were really careful about how it worked)

UltimateNagash
22-12-2008, 12:54
Or maybe as a special character - gives everyone in the army Terracotta rules (Unbreakable etc) but is really quite expensive?

Rodman49
23-12-2008, 11:30
Unit List
Here is the list I came up after your suggestions TINS:

CORE

Conscripts - Expendable Unit and Static Res (Shade & Horde)
Peasants - Expendable Skirmisher (Shade & Dancer & Horde)
Cho-Ko-Nu - Hybrid Infantry (Shade & Horde)
Hordesmen - Fast Cavalry (Shade & Dancer)



SPECIAL

Arbalest - Anti Light Infantry Warmachine (Shade)
Cataphracts - Medium Cavalry (Shade & Dancer)
Imperial Guard - Elite Infantry (Shade & Rock)
Battle Monks - Combat Skirmisher (Dancer)
Siege Crossbow - Anti Armor/Monster Warmachine (Shade)



RARE

Oriental Dragon - Combat Monster (Dancer)
Phoenix - Shooting Monster (Dancer)
Imperial Chariot - Front Hammer (Lance)
Arquebusiers - Ranged Skirmisher (Shade)



Expanded Explanation

Cho-Ko-Nu - These guys may get dropped down to only 8 points, BS3 Repeater Crossbows are fairly awful at actually shooting.
Light Cavalry - I made Hordesmen the fast cav, they are significantly different than generic fast cav, having decent CC punch with WS 4 and S 4, but also come equipped with bows. They fight better in CC than most Fast Cav (like Pistoliers & Glade Riders) and still shoot okay (better than Marauders but worse than most other).
Medium/Heavy Cavalry - One of the hardest units to make a reasonable attractive choice. Before Cataphracts were dirt cheap Heavy Cav, but with Repeaters I feel they are getting a little expensive. I may reduce their points to 17 base, +1 for longsword and +3 for fire lance (which is like the old cavalry hammer).
Oriental Dragon - This is not a lance unit. Look carefully at its stats. WS 5, S 5, and 5 Attacks with Poison. That's an average of 2.93 unsaved wounds against WS3 T3 5+ AS opponents. That does not go into the front of an enemy unit (standard ranked reg is outnumber, standard, 2 ranks; already losing by one). He may be able to go into a flank with some success but it won't be anything with heavy armor, a BSB, or a ward save. I feel its a perfect Dancer unit, if you took two you may be able to shove it into the front of an enemy but then again you are sacrificing 440 points and your rare slots to get a lance.
Imperial Chariot - Did some math on this guy and he'll go back to the old version. Old version did an average of 7.08 unsaved wounds in a charge @ 175 pts. New version was a little overboard with 8.75 unsaved wounds @ 150 pts.


One last note, as a general rule I try to avoid having multiple units with the same role in an army. Why have two units do the same role except that one unit does it better - the worse unit will never be taken.

Chariots remain options for characters so an army could feasibly have 6 chariots in 2k. Of course this means the army could be a decent lance army so it may mean eliminating bodyguard on the Imperial Guard so the army doesn't have a really good Rock and Bludgeon subdomain.

Thanks for the example spell set Ultimate, I'll add parts of it in once the units are ironed out.

UltimateNagash
23-12-2008, 12:14
No problems, and yeah, wait till the units are right. I was bored and just wanted to do an Elemental list anyway - but I do think there should be some form of actual Djinn summoning in there, making new units of smaller Elementals.

And call me Nagash ;)

P.S. On the two units doing the same role, one reason (and really only one): one could be more powerful, one could be jack of all trades and one could be more protected...
So, things that work together: Slow and powerful unit, Fast and weaker unit. etc

therisnosaurus
23-12-2008, 12:41
righto, here we go again:

Now we're looking more solid so far as an overarching theme, let's think about actually on the ground play.

CORE

* Conscripts - Expendable Unit and Static Res (Shade & Horde)

Don't like these guys. They won't be able to hurt much, but like you say, they provide cheap combat rez that, with the awesome defensive blocks that are your chokonu, will make a tarpit that even full strength enemies will have trouble with, let alone depleted ones. Keep your rank infantry to a minimum.

* Peasants - Expendable Skirmisher (Shade & Dancer & Horde)

While I'm not opposed to these in principle, they're going to be hopelessly overpowered in practice for baiting, deployment control, tying up opposing skirmishers and shutting down fliers. Don't underestimate the power of lots of cheap, 360 los, 24" range firepower. I'd really recommend cutting them.


* Cho-Ko-Nu - Hybrid Infantry (Shade & Horde)

No halberds IMO. This is just a core unit, two roles is good enough- shooter and defensive infantry. Giving people the option to take small units of 10 with halberds as counterpunch detachments is just too nice. Save glaives for the elites.

* Hordesmen - Fast Cavalry (Shade & Dancer)

I like it. Great weapons is a good choice, gives them a little punch but makes them very vulnerable if they ain't charging.



SPECIAL

* Arbalest - Anti Light Infantry Warmachine (Shade)

No issues here. This, by the way, is actually an astonishingly nasty anti heavy cavalry weapon you'll find in practice. str 4 is enough to reduce saves to 3+. When you consider that high elves pay 100 points for a machine that gains armor piercing, but shoots on average less than half as many times, it could be significantly overpowered. You want to weaken incoming enemy, not wipe them out :P Not to mention you can slot these in between line units due to their low footprint. I would NOT want to stand in front of a choku+arbalest gunline.

* Cataphracts - Medium Cavalry (Shade & Dancer)
Good. Cut them to 18 points and trim the barding. 4+ saves is fine, dare to be different. Cut option for fire lance too.

* Imperial Guard - Elite Infantry (Shade & Rock)

Too tough. Remember, you're going to be fighting units that have been utterly decimated. Even chaos warriors are going to have a hard time budging these guys, which just isn't cricket. Drop the bodyguard rule, drop the 2 attacks, make em 13 points each or so (working off greatswords). You HAVE to give the opponent a legitmate chance of cleaning through your lines with their reduced strength. With the amount of dancing, baiting and interference this army can run, that's just not visible

* Battle Monks - Combat Skirmisher (Dancer)

No issues, but drop the great weapon. Too punchy, and go for the traditionalist GW canon of them being shaolin types. Yes they used staves, but the whole unarmed thing is cooler. Again, these guys could RIP through a unit of depleted elites- remember they rank up so you'd be getting 9-10 attacks, that's enough to clear out a front rank of chaos warriors, temple guard or other equivalent elites. If that's the only rank they have left...

* Siege Crossbow - Anti Armor/Monster Warmachine (Shade)

The arbalest is nasty enough. Do you REALLY need this? Now we're starting to look more thoroughly into unit inclusion as opposed to just thematics, I want to start hearing some logic. Remember, it's your duty to give the list weaknesses as well as strengths. Also, this is not a 'wear down' weapon, this is a 'I shoot you, your entire unit runs off the table/you loose a 50 point knight/ there goes your dragon rider' model. It's more lance than shade, as I have previously stated.



RARE

* Oriental Dragon - Combat Monster (Dancer)

By directed power, previously, I meant the fact he can fly, which means he can easily disrupt and cripple an enemy advance to start with. Now, when you charge him into a unit of equivalent points -or even more- 300-350, he would be able to win combat and potentially break them 4-5 times. Hitting on 3s, wounding on 3's , 6+ saves against even the more elite of infantry. you get a flank, they get outnumber and a banner. Against regular (elf, human, undead) infantry this guy will just be horrible. There's a reason dragons are loathed. Believe me in the hands of a good player (such as myself :P) a dragon can clean up half the enemy army. TWO of them, on the other hand, would just be utterly obscene

* Phoenix - Shooting Monster (Dancer)

>>No issues here

* Imperial Chariot - Front Hammer (Lance)

>> uh uh. The whole point of having a weak subdomain is you don't have anything that can do that. Ever. Well, almost. The ability to have 6 powerful, direct damage, low footprint, long range units is just wrong on so many levels.and will be horribly overpowered when you're throwing these at units that have had several ranks carved off from your ubiquitous shooting.

* Arquebusiers - Ranged Skirmisher (Shade)

I like, but, again, these seem skaveny-empirey oddities. 150 points for 30 average BS4 handgun shots will not only murder infantry, but cavalry and rank monsters as well. I like the idea of a ranged elite skirmisher unit, but make them more specific. If you take out the siege crossbow and great weapon monks, for example, the list lacks weaponry that can really harm high toughness opponents. So make these guys monster killers. Not high strength, perhaps, but multi wound causing or always wounding on an x. You don't want anything that can cream heavy armor or you'll have ridicuous shooting as well as fairly nasty combat troops



Some final thoughts:
- start imagining building, deploying and using armies. These stats often look fine on paper, but in practice things are vastly different

- I would suggest, as an interesting weakness, to absolutely minimise attacks and abilities above str 4. This works perfectly with the shade domain, giving you a vast weight of weak firepower and attacks to grind the enemy down, without any knock-out-punches. Units that have high strength would have to have corresponding weakness (example- hordsemen are str 4 on charge, but very vulnerable after it)

- be careful with your mathhammer. Remember to imagine your battlefield scenarios correctly. No decent player with this list would engage full strength enemy, so doing your resolutions against them is fruitless and will lead you awry.

-some of your logic is a little flawed. For example, saying the dragon can't take down a unit with BSB. Well, given the average BSB =120 points or so, plus a (let's be conservative) 180 point unit, if this guy could reliably break DOUBLE HIS POINTS in models without any assistance, you'd have some serious issues. The fact that he could potentially do it with even the slightest bit of luck (4-5 hits, decent rolls to wound and you're going CR of 5 (4+flank) v 3 (standard/BS/ outnumber), win by two. And the other fact that he is phenomenally unlikely to lose a combat by any significant amount- EVEN against a unit of double his points cost- means you need to go home and rework the math a little.

Remember- Winning comprehensively is worth a lot. Almost never losing badly is worth just as much. The dragon, and most of your elite units provide that combination in spades.

Rodman49
24-12-2008, 20:56
Right into responses.

CORE

Conscripts - Hmm. How about we give them no command options (except leader with +1 Ld) and increase their points to 4? That makes them 6 to add light armor and a shield. That way they only contribute numbers and ranks to combats, but are real fragile so could just end up giving the enemy combat res. If the upgrade options are taken they are a little more pricey - but everyone seems to want the option.
Peasants - Make them more expensive? Or make a ranged skirmisher a special choice and cut these. I'm tempted to go with the later here.
Cho-Ko-Nu - Sounds good, 9 pts w/ shield and 8 pts w/o. No other equipment options.
Hordesmen - Ready to rock.


SPECIAL

Arbalest - An Arbalest on average kills 1.56 T3 2+ AS guys per volley. A High Elf Repeater Bolt Thrower kills 1.33. Against guys with a 1+ AS the Repeater Bolt Thrower is better (0.89 kills compared to the Arbalest's 0.78). On the other hand the Arbalest shoots lightly armored guys much better (3.89 kills against 5+ AS compared to the Bolt Thrower's 2.67). At long range the Bolt Thrower closes the gap or exceeds the Arbalest. In regards to unit footprint we could make these two 40 point warmachines that shoot 2d6 bolts and are taken as a battery (like most bolt throwers).
Cataphracts - Hmm, change their name to Lancers, give them normal lances and repeaters and reduce their save to 4+? Maybe keep option for fire lances with the name change. Possibly move version of old Cataphracts to core.
Imperial Guard - How about just drop the attack? Maybe move it to Rare?
Battle Monks - Sounds good.
Siege Crossbow - I feel that any army that has perfected the crossbow technology should have access to a bolt thrower of some sort. How about make it strength 7 base - so its like a Great Bolt Thrower essentially, make it 60 pts, and make it 1 per slot? No upgrade options.


SPECIAL

Oriental Dragon - How about up its strength to 6 and reduce its wounds to 4? That way its not a unit breaker but a real mean flanker (like the Varghulf).
Phoenix - Ready to roll out.


I'll put the Imperial Chariot and the Arquebusiers on hold for now. (Wait till more of the list starts to come together).

therisnosaurus
25-12-2008, 02:08
Conscripts:

I think it might be time to get the fluff nuts out. What (if any) were the role of conscript/peasant/servant soldiers in chinese armies (if any) during the middle history of china (this list is shaping up as drawing primary forces from post-chariot pre-gunpowder states). At this stage I can see issues all over the place with them- not massive fundamental ones, but bad ones
1) gameplay- cheap cost, high footprint: Too easy to bulk out your deployment zone with cheap sacrificial units that have no effect on your expensive ones. Combined with the amount of control you can apply with skirmishers, fliers, cavalry and chariots, this will make it horribly difficult to make the few points that reach your end of the table count.
2)Gameplay- flank rocks: Allows you to lock down flanks against counter-flanking maneuvers too easily- a 24" area denial unit that most fast cav/flier units will have trouble with for under 100 points is going to be problematic as well.
3) Theme: Just don't seem to... fit. for me. When you imagine the rest of the list visualy, almost all of the rest of it is disciplined, moderately-to well armored looking crossbow armed types. Raggeldy bow armed dudes in big blocks don't fit well with that- skirmishers maybe, but not blocks

So drop em.

Peasants:

If conscripts go, I think I can deal with peasants. However, 40 point units are just... wrong. You're not going to see them much any more, especially when that 40 point unit can be genuinely effective as a force on the battlefield- 5 chaos hounds can't do much, nor can 20 skaven slaves (which I bet are going to go up to 3 points each when the new book hits anyway). These guys can, even as they are now. So, my suggestion is buff them up a little and increase their points proportionately. Let's go for a target of 6ppm. Easiest way to do that is to up their BS to 3 and rack their leadership up to 6 overall. However, even at 60 points a unit, they're too good as they're then solid shooters AND beautiful bait units. So, if we are getting rid of conscripts, we can perhaps focus these guy's lowborn rule a little better, make them cause panic, but only if they run through friendlies. This makes abusing them as bait a little more risky, while still possible. That with the points upping should solve the issues. May as well give them peerless archery too, make it universal.

CKN + hordesmen:

These are fine. I'd drop WS to 3 for now on the hordesmen, save WS/BS 4 for specials for now.


?Cataphracts?

as you suggested drop a version to core. WS3, BS3, I3 cavalry with heavy armor, unbarded horses, hand weapons and repeater crossbows. give em LD 8. Bout 15 PPM. Undercost them as they'll need to be fielded in larger numbers than regular cavalry. I think these may also have to have a 8-10 + mimimum unit size to prevent list abuse, but leave it at 5 for now.


CORE OVERVIEW

In isolation this looks solid. 2 cav, 2 infantry, one of which is a skirmisher. No hard hitters- but all have the potential to knock off a wound or two a turn with shooting, which suits the shade domains, three potential dancer units, and all cheap enough that you can bulk out a nice core section for fulfilling the horde domain. None of these units could smack through even a depleted enemy in CC without a good bit of luck- which is exactly what we want- that's where the special/rares come in

As a quick though, it might be an idea to expand the peerless archery rule to say infantry get the stand and shoot reaction bonus (only inf) and ALL cavalry can shoot with a 360 LOS arc. This will be a little tamer on the movement for the medium cav manoevering.

Overall though, with those changes, core is good to go.


Now, on to special


Arbalest:

I like the idea of making it a unit, but given the way the list is shaping up, I'd suggest keeping it the way it is, but make it at least slightly mobile. Either able to march, or it uses horse movement or something. Make it a little different to standard artillery to fit in more with the dancer thing. Be aware that while your mathhammer averages out, there is one last factor you have to account for, and that's that this guy has the POTENTIAL to knock out 24 shots. An RPB always fires 6, and admittedly you can have dud rolls as well, but if you DO get the big roll once a game, you have the potential to wipe a unit off the table and really upset your opponent's plans.

Cataphracts
Good idea. as you say, keep these guys as good as the current cataphracts stats wise, keep the fire lance option (but drop the cathayan sword?). Perhaps the option for a shield to go to 3+ saves as well. Drop a toned down version to core, as suggested. Ideally you want them to be able to have a middling chance of breaking a) a full strength core unit, b) a depleted elite unit with no characters or c) pretty much guarantee finishing off a crippled unit, whatever it is.

imperial guard
To be honest I'd be less worried about the 2 attacks than the stubborn, which is saying something. You simply cannot afford to have a rock unit to the level of other elite armies here. for one, it runs counter to the dancer domain (why dance when you can take a charge from anything- and win next turn?) and the horde domain (15 point infantry say what now?) and for two, it will only have to hold up seriously depleted enemy units. It's just too good for what it does. I mean, throw mr dynasty warrior there and a small unit (15) will be able to hold off FULL STRENGTH super elites, even fear causing ones. Not only that but they can dish out more pain than any other human infantry I can think of (2 ws 5, I5 strength 4 armor piercing attacks each? not pretty)
That last I can deal with. you have chokunu as core, and versatile, above average units all around seems to be this army's growing strength. But please- it can shoot brilliantly, hold brilliantly, dish out the pain brilliantly, and it's tough as balls due to the tiger armor. Even as a rare choice, that's just not cool. Drop the stubborn thing. drop the attacks. they'll still do the job you want them to do well, and they'll fit the domains a lot better.

Monks
Move along, nothing to see here.

siege crossbow
ok, so we must have a bolt thrower. Nowz the thinking time. I would be disinclined to give it any str7 option. It's overpowered enough for dwarfs, no need to be copycats :P. How can you have a bolt thrower that... isn't a bolt thrower. Something that looks like a bolt thrower, acts (superficially) like a bolt thrower, but doesn't provide such directed, crushing power like a bolt thrower. This is your chance to make something truly wierd and wonderful, something that will make people laugh and include one just because it's so awesome. IT SHOOTS TELLYTUBBIES. etc. Come up with a bunch of ideas, make them unique and interesting, as opposed to basic rules that already exist- auto panic, rank pen, more strength, more multiple wounds etc. Oh, also, slaughtering light infantry is already taken. I'd suggest giving this one a more anti heavy armor, monster, skirmisher or flier bent. doesn't have to be a siege weapon either.

SPECIAL OVERVIEW

Coming along. if changes are implemented, we now have a better-than-core selection of rank infantry, skirmishers, and medium cavalry. Good classic special choices. Also a war machine- makes sense, works. If we get something funky happening with the siege crossbow, we have something a little more interesting too (think Tomb scorpion. Squig herds, gyrocopter, chaos spawn, goblin hewer etc). The zanier the better. It'll probably end up as a rare choice anyhow (2 war machines based on the same principle as specials is a bit disingenuous IMO)

More coming

therisnosaurus
25-12-2008, 09:33
On to rare picks:

Phoenix:
da da dee, da da dum... no problems. Honestly, I acutally think it might be worth buffing her wounds to 5. She can't actually kill anything reliably in CC, but in combination with a special unit in the front, she'd be nasty. I think that's something you should be looking to do- nasty and doable combo attacks, but no one unit should hold it's own against equal terms/points/rarity enemy one on one

Dragon:
I guess that works ^^. It's still a lancey unit, but no longer hideously OP. You now need to be a lot more careful with him so he's more dancery. I think perhaps dropping large target on both him and the phoenix is a good move since neither are really worthy of it any more. I would also suggest switching his magic missile to perhaps steed of shadows (addended to allow him to cast it only on himself), making him a truly nasty mobility unit, with a potential 40" move.

I'd suggest you come up with another 3 rare choices (and cut the least appropriate one) Perhaps another special choice as well, most armies have 5-6.

For the rares, bring back the arquebusier concept but modify it somewhat to give it a distinct special role. Use special rules as opposed to straight stats. Rare units customarily are more interesting things as opposed to straight damage dealers- for example, dwarf cannons, stone throwers and rock throwers are special, but the organ gun and flame cannon are rare, and use unique abilities. In fact, rare units broadly have special, unique or complex abilities unavailable elswhere in the army, or even the game. The same applies to the siege crossbow. Think up something a little more interesting and it should fit right in to the rare slots.

If you'd like, I'm pretty sold on having another cavalry unit and making it a little special. Something like

ws4, bs4, st4, t3, w1, i4, a2, ld8 (maybe 9).

RXbow, longsword, tiger armor. Peerless archery. Never suffer the penalty from ranks or outnumbering if they lose the combat (so they'll still lose by a minimum of 1, but further penalties caused by ranks/outnumbering are ignored, including auto break from fear). Phoenix bolts (+1 strength, flaming and magical). Can replace longsword with halberd for no cost, can purchase shields for 2pts, barding for 2 points. 28ppm (maybe a bit less depending on testing).


This does a few things
-rounds out the light, light/medium, medium/heavy, heavy/super heavy list for cavalry
-Creates a surprisingly good defensive cavalry unit- maybe even too good, not sure. Will certainly hold depleted units, but will probably have trouble against equally elite ones- grail knights, dragon princes, etc etc.
-Follows the equipment theme and trend very well.
-Gives you a heavy cavalry unit without it being a lance unit- quite difficult to do and still have a purpose with the current ruleset, but certainly something that fits this list.
-visually will make a beautiful sort of centrepiece 'unit' and a nice bodyguard for mounted characters
-note the unique special rules- they have magical shooting, and are a cavalry block that can take a charge from elite infantry and have a hope of winning. This is the sort of wierd **** you want to be aiming for

Give em a run if you're interested.

I look forward to your next set of reforms/tweaks. Things are starting to come together nicely, I think. Still a lot of work needing to be done, but it's starting to look a lot more coherent overall, but we'll have the units at least superficially ironed out in another few iterations and can start on the characters.

therisnosaurus
28-12-2008, 01:13
On further reflection, looking at the imperial guard, you could probably keep the 2 attacks (stubborn still really has to go though). The issue is, of course, It's more interesting to have slightly weaker troops but larger units, as this means 1) more static combat rez and 2) a 'hordier' feel, as if you go from say 15 to 12 points you're getting about 25% more models. I would be inclined if there's a choice between going cheaper/ individually weaker and more expensive/individualy stronger, to take the former.

therisnosaurus
29-12-2008, 12:00
and even more from saurus. I dropped by GW and got myself some of the latest army books and had a read. I haven't really been up to date on daemons, dark elves or warriors of chaos and in these three books points costs have been significantly reduced on a lot of stuff, so my old points systems are a little rusty. Here are some modifications I'd suggest

CKN:
nothing right now

Hordesmen:
Fast cav has been significantly reduced in price, so I'd suggest knocking these down to about 13ppm including all options but making them not count as core.

core-a-phracts:
14ppm with no option for shield works for these guys I think

skirmishers:
7ppm is too much to pay for such weak troops in the context of the latest releases, however you can't make them less or they'll be too readily available and easy to bulk the list out with. Ideally you want to give them more abilities or stats to make them valuable at 7ppm.

Imp guard: Without stubborn these should be 12ppm or so. looking at the latest (and upcoming) releases, keeping them on 2 attacks I think is fairer, but I'm still undecided, leave it at 2 and wait for playtesting to tell

cataphracts: 17ppm I think is about right, + cost for lances of 2 points per model. Lances should probably be a swap for longswords, not an 'as well as'.

Rodman49
29-12-2008, 23:50
I feel that Hordesmen should be core for the dancer subdomain.

How about we make Cataphracts core with 3 plus saves and bows and 4 WS but only Cathayan longswords. And make Lancers medium cav (4 plus saves) with repeaters and fire lances and WS4, BS4.

therisnosaurus
30-12-2008, 01:27
Oh, yeah, they should be core, just not COUNT as core, as per the usual for support units. If you have the cataphracts in there you can still do an all cav list really easy (the units are cheap). It's just cutting down on the potential for list abuse a little. It's just a thought too, I don't think it'd be a huge issue to have them count for core, but I'd be interested to see some list comps and see what people do with things. From what I've seen, I'd be more inclined to take the BS4 2 attack imp guard as my line units over the CKN and just use fast cav and skirmishers to fill my core slots.

on the phracts, I think it's smarter in the end to make weaker troops but have more of them, especially for the core choices. I'm not averse to giving them swords, but remember, the swords DO give them +1 WS, so there's no huge need to give them WS4 base. 3+ saves I'm not hot on either. Certainly for the special choice lancers, and have a 2+ or even 1+ save for the rare cav if you have any, but having 4+ save core cav gives you a chance to make a unique core choice, very few armies have interesting medium cav such as that, so I'd be jumping at the chance to do so. Of course, you'll want to make them nice and cheap too :). It also doesn't make a huge deal of sense to have the cheap core cav be more durable than the more pricey special ones...

edit: I also like the switch from RXbows to bows on the phracts. Means they can move and fire essentially just as effectively, but gives them less static shootyness and makes them 'feel' both a little weaker and different from the lancers (different ranged AND combat weapons) if you get my meaning. Good move.

And another thought, given the really stiff competition monks are going to suffer from the other special choices- imp guard and lancers are going to be ESSENTIAL to a good army, methinks, and arbalests are really, really competitive and great psychologically as well, so fitting monks in there is going to be a tall order. Having them at 10 or 11 points will make them a lot more attractive just to fill up that 4th slot with some spare points or similar

therisnosaurus
30-12-2008, 11:09
Rod and I had a chat via instant messenger, He came up with a wicked sick idea for the arbalest and siege crossbow, so I'll let him break that one to you, but he also asked that I do a bit more work on a cool idea I had for the army's wizards. thus:


Cathayan Disciple-priests

___________Type M/ WS/ BS/ S/ T/ W/ I/ A/ LD/ pts
Priest of the Phoenix 4/ 3/ 3/ 3/ 4/ 3/ 3/ 1/ 9 / 255
Priest of the Dragon 4/ 3/ 3/ 3/ 4/ 3/ 3/ 1/ 8/ 225
Disciple of the Tiger 4/ 4/ 3/ 4/ 4/ 2/ 4/ 1/ 8/ 115
Disciple of the Tortoise 4/ 3/ 3/ 3/ 3/ 2/ 3/ 1/ 8/ 95

All: Gain a magic level for +35 points

All: Ride a warhorse for x points



Priest of the Phoenix special rules: Level 3 wizard, flaming attacks. May use the lore of fire

Aura of the phoenix: The priest and any unit he joins have the regenerate special rule.

Prayer of the phoenix: the priest calls upon his mentor-aspect, seeking wisdom from the heart of the phoenix. His body becomes engulfed in flame and soon disappears altogether, leaving a walking figure of flickering fire. At the beginning of your magic phase the priest may pray to the phoenix. If he does so he may cast no spells, nor use bound items. However, until the beginning of his next magic phase, he becomes immune to mundane attacks and mundane attacks against any unit he has joined subtract 2 from their strength.

During that magic phase the priest may choose to expend his power dice. For each dice expended in this way, choose a friendly model within 12”. On a 5+ that model recovers a wound. You may only return one wound per model per turn. Note that this is not a spell, and so cannot be dispelled.



Priest of the dragon special rules: Level 3 wizard, cause fear. May use the lore of shadows

Aura of the dragon: attacks by the priest and any unit he joins that roll a 6 to hit ignore armor saves. Note that these attacks must still roll to wound as normal. Attacks that would need more than a 5+ to hit (6+ or more) cannot benefit from this.

Prayer of the dragon: The priest calls upon the shadowy spirit of the dragon, wandering the shadow-paths and disrupting the flows of power about his foes, causing the magic of his foes to wane. At the beginning of your magic phase the priest may pray to the dragon. If he does so he may cast no spells, nor use bound items. However, until the beginning of his next magic phase, he and any unit he has joined becomes immune to magical attacks

During that magic phase the priest may choose to expend his power dice. For each dice expended in this way, choose an enemy unit within 12”. That unit suffers d3 str 3 hits with no armor save, str 5 if the unit is a wizard or has magical attacks. You may only use this once on an enemy unit per turn. Note that this is not a spell and so cannot be dispelled


Disciple of the tiger special rules: Level 1 wizard, may use lore of beasts.

Aspect of the Tiger: The disciple draws upon the spirit-realm, imbuing himself with the strength of the tiger. At the beginning of your magic phase the disciple may pray to the tiger. He gains +2 strength, +1 toughness and +2 attacks until the beginning of his next magic phase and any unit he is accompanying may re-roll failed to wound rolls, but he may not cast magic this phase.

Disciple of the tortoise special rules: Level 1 wizard, may use lore of life.

Aspect of the tortoise: The disciple draws upon the spirit-realm, imbuing himself with the endurance of the tortoise. At the beginning of your magic phase the disciple may pray to the tortoise. He gains a 1+ armor save and he and any unit he has joined gain a 5+ ward save, but he may not cast magic this phase.





Add to Warrior monks:


Monks- increase to 14 pts each.

you may only have 1 unit of monks per priest/disciple in the army. The units gain the following abilities based on the priest/disciple. If you have less units of monks than you have priests, you may choose which priests' temples the monks come from.

Temple of the phoenix: regenerate on a 5+, flaming attacks

Temple of the Tiger: +3 M and +1 attack

Temple of the tortoise: stubborn

Temple of the dragon: 5-6 to hit ignore armor saves.

Rodman49
31-12-2008, 23:07
Hey that's a pretty badass idea. I'm thinking we take these guys as the Hero level wizards - of course alter their stats some and make them simply apply a benefit to Monk units they join (like Heralds) with the rule that only one Temple applies.

I'm thinking of reducing the Wizards special abilities and instead making their buffs better. So Phoenix could be Regenerate and Flaming Attacks. Tiger could be +1 Attacks and Hatred. Tortoise could be Stubborn and +1 Toughness. Dragon could be a special ability called Deathstrike (6's to hit auto-wound and ignore armor).

Then we could have another class of Wizard that would use Celestial Magic and have an upgraded version of it for a Rare choice - if we go that Celestial > the rest from the fluff perspective.

therisnosaurus
01-01-2009, 22:53
The big issue I have with that is having hero level wizards that must join combat units (in fact, currently the only unit in the army that DOESN'T have ranged) means that they're horribly vulnerable to going squish. The reason I have all 4 of my versions having either a tougher statline and combat enhancing abilities, or abilities that give them significantly higher defensive abilities, is you want people to put them into combats where those buffs will tell. (though note that the tiger and dragon buffs still work on shooting, so there's an interesting playoff there as to whether to buff your unit or cast your own magic). If the mages themselves fold like a wet paper bag, then the buff goes off, you lose many, many, many points and your magic defense.

Further, unless you make the priests all have the same statline you can't really have a single unit entry for all of them, and having 4 hero choices just taken up on different types of mage that really only work with monk units is limiting the list too much. The way I've set it up is the mages are equally good wherever you stick them, and IF you choose to have monks, they give those buff as well, but it doesn't force you to have them. The better of the two unit buffs (regenerate and the ignore armor attacks) are consequently linked to the lord choices. You want all three of your lord choices to be valid options for a standard cathay armies, so you don't want to go generic. As we discussed, you have the 2 lord priests, the leadership/tactician guy and the superfighty, totally not a leader guy who can shoot brilliantly as well as combatting, all of these choices are very useful before the enemy get to you, and continue to be useful afterwards.

Then again, I might entirely be misunderstanding what you want to do. Perhaps write it out more precisely (like a unit entry or something) so I can kinda tell what you're aiming for more accurately

Rodman49
04-01-2009, 16:52
I was thinking of having 4 separate unit entries like there is in the Daemon Codex. So that . . .

Disciple of the Phoenix - (4 M, 4 WS, 4 BS, 4 S, 4 T, 4 I, 2 W, 2 A, 8 Ld)
Level 1 Wizard - Lore of Fire
Upgrade to Level 2 for +35 Pts
Special: Regenerate, Phoenix Aspect, Phoenix Aura

Disciple of the Dragon - (4 M, 5 WS, 5 BS, 4 S, 3 T, 5 I, 2 W, 2 A, 8 Ld)
Level 1 Wizard - Lore of Shadows
Upgrade to Level 2 for +35 Pts
Special: Deathstrike, Dragon Aspect, Dragon Aura

Disciple of the Tiger - (4 M, 4 WS, 4 BS, 4 S, 4 T, 4 I, 2 W, 3 A, 8 Ld)
Level 1 Wizard - Lore of Beasts
Upgrade to Level 2 for +35 Pts
Special: Hatred, Tiger Aspect, Tiger Aura

Disciple of the Tortoise - (4 M, 4 WS, 4 BS, 4 S, 4 T, 3 I, 3 W, 2 A, 8 Ld)
Level 1 Wizard - Lore of Life
Upgrade to Level 2 for +35 Pts
Special: Stubborn, Tortoise Aspect, Tortoise Aura

The Aura would give their special rule (like Hatred/Stubborn/etc) to the unit they join, while the aspect would be some kind of bound spell buff the enemy has a chance to dispell.

therisnosaurus
12-01-2009, 03:48
Rod's working on polishing up the next PDF, which should be great. There have been a lot of changes going down and for all my cynicism and probing and generally being a justified *******, I have to say outright that this thing is way better than mine from a purified perspective already, and it's got the potential to go a long, long way.

I've offered my services as a concept and character artist in addition to my usual hobnobbery and comments. As I mentioned coming in, I really want to see a good list come out of warseer again, and since Rod is doing such a great job of design, I'll help with the aesthetics. Over the next few months as the list takes shape I'll be posting concept artwork to help create a unified sort of look for the cathayan army.

To pre-empt the PDF coming out, here's a more detailed summary of the current strengths and weaknesses of cathay

Pros:
-massive weight of shooting, though not highly efficient
-durable units with good armor saves and solid leadership
-versatile, reliable characters that are likely to pull their weight
-good numbers and relatively cheap units.
-extremely mobile and able to bait, reposition and 'dance'

cons:
- fairly weak in combat compared to other races- all units have okay shooting and decent combat abilities, but very few excel at either
- vulnerable to psychology with few ItP or counter-psychology rules or items.
-unable to bash their way through opponents offensively without good luck.
-lack 'brick' units with stubborn, unbreakable etc, rules that allow them to be reliable speedbumps.
-elite units pay for both good shooting and good combat ability, so must perform both roles to realistically make their points back.



At this stage we have an army that has to cautiously engage the foe, avoiding combat until favourable positioning and a few turns of missile fire have worn the foe down. Enemy units that manage to get through the fire unscathed and unharried will cause havoc in cathayan lines as the army lacks the tools to stop them in melee. If the cathayan army succesfully hinders the advance of these keystone units it will likely win by crippling the enemy with shooting and then delivering combined charges to crush the last remnants of the enemy.

Cathayan shooting on the whole is large in amount, but weak in practice. To overcome this, heroes and upgrades can enhance the shooting to be more effective (often against specific targets) to allow the shooting to deal more efficiently with the targets it needs to.

In summary, the cathayan army will win by shutting down sigificant threats until the weight of fire can take its toll, while taking out weaker targets with its own elites in combat, using their mobility to choose fights. The player will need to carefully place their units and heroes in order that they can make their fire count against targets that matter and so they are not overly exposed to being rapidly engaged in melee and broken. redeployment, baiting and countercharging will be key to this.

the cathayan army will lose by failing to shut down the enemy assault units and allowing its own expensive elites to be engaged by the superior elites of the enemy. On the same front, even lighter units such as marauders or glade riders can be a significant threat to cathayan units if left unmolested, so a player who focuses entirely on destroying the keystones of the enemy army will find themselves picked apart by the support units

High Loremaster
14-01-2009, 14:52
Just throwing in my two cents...

I think a lot of people forget that Cathay is Cathay. It is not China, even if it is based off of it. You do not need to be historically accurate. You do not need to have all of your units correspond to a Chinese troop in a certain time period. Hell, your units don't necessarily have to be all Chinese-based. I have also constructed a Cathayan army list, which I haven't touched in some years - it includes Assassins. No, they're not Ninjas, they're Assassins. As long as you don't use real-world Chinese/Japanese names for your units, I'm fairly confident that anything goes.

That being said... I like the list a lot! Fire Lances are particularly interesting. In my own list (which isn't very professionally done), Fire Lances are a ranged weapon.

therisnosaurus
14-01-2009, 22:52
I wrote a similar list, and I wholeheartedly agree. However, when the opportunity presents itself to create an interesting, novel and unique list while restricting oneself to a certain culture, then I've got no qualms about doing that. Rod has certainly managed to do that, so I'd say let him :P

Anyhow, ran my first battle with the cathay list yesterday, 2250 versus daemons

my list was 2 blocks of crossbows, 2 units of skirmishers, 2 units of fast cav, 2 units of lancers, 1 unit of imp guard, a couple of arbalestiots and a unit of rare cav. 1 mage lord, 1 mage, 2 captains

up against big block of bloodletters, big block of daemonettes, unit of fleshhounds, unit of flamers, unit of fiends, unit of seekers, unit of furies, small unit of horrors, khorne herald on jugger, khorne BSB with -2 ld banner on jugger and herald of slaanesh with sirensong

Over the first turn or two most of my army fired at the bloodletters, wiping them out by the time they hit my lines. The fleshhounds munched through my imperial guard, panicing a unit of lancers off the table the fiends creamed a unit of fast cav, pursuing them off the table. the furies and the herald in the bloodletter unit charged my skirmishers (and level 2) mage, taking three turns to cut them down to 1 model before they fled. in the meantime, the three seekers that managed to front charge one of my crossbow blocks held them up for three turns (needing three or less on three leadership tests and making them all) until the fiends returned and rearcharged them, wiping them out.

the daemonettes sirensonged a unit of lancers with a flamethrower captain, breaking them and chaining into an arbalest. the lancers rallied on the board edge and flamed the daemonettes for a couple of turns before getting chased off the board

the main combat of the game was one of my crossbow blocks with my BSB and wizard lord. These used the wizard's ability to cream the bloodletters, and then turned to take the charge of the BSB and accompanying flesh hounds, a combat which then mired both units until the wizard got a bears anger off (I cast it on 5 dice the first turn, with four 2's and a 1, it got dispelled. Next turn it went off (again on 5 dice) and he ko'd the BSB, finally cleaning up the last fleshhound.

He threw his other khorne herald and fiends into the whittled down unit, but again failed to do enough damage to break them and the fiends were subsequently flanked by my super cav, finishing them off and leaving his general alone on the last turn. When the game finished up, I had my wizard lord, BSB and a few rxbowmen, a unit of fast cav and a unit of skirmishers left. He had a his general, half his daemonettes, his herald of slaanesh and unit of horrors left

Overall it came out as a draw, with a slight edge to me. not bad. Notes from the game

-crossbow infantry are damn hard, which is great.
-the tiger mage ability is really nasty if you chain it
-the result may have been a little warped as I did end up with two hills in my deployment zone, and he couldn't actually hit anything in combat, some he should have won by a far more significant margin

Justice And Rule
26-01-2009, 02:48
Wow, it's been a while since I last posted.

I remember a while back thinking about a Cathayan Army list. I have therisnosaurus's old list, which I used for a little while and enjoyed (Though it, as he said, can be a bit tricky.) before I moved onto Warhammer Ancients.

Anyways, on a first read-through and a review of the thread, this is definitely more my style. No offense to therisnosaurus, but as a history guy I am a little more inclined to go towards this sort of list, though there are a lot of similarities. Perhaps the best way to put it is that the previous list is more Oriental, while this list is more Chinese.

As a lot of game stuff has already been said, I just wanted to say that it's amazing how well this logically syncs up with the situations the Cathayans would have to face.

- Fire Lances (Something I was going to use in my list until I found a shiny thing and wandered off) are not only unique, but very logical for such an army. More specifically, I can see it as a logical extension of living near the Ogre Kingdoms; they give Cataphracts good enough Strength to wound them consistently, especially ones that are already softened up.
- Similarly, the shooting style also makes sense from this perspective. It isn't smart to engage Bull Ogres in hand-to-hand, so the focus on shooting (Especially "Peerless Archery") is almost too obvious once you think about it.

Some suggestions:
- I haven't tried the list, so I'm not sure how much it would affect it... but wouldn't it be a little more appropriate for the "Lowborn" distinction to panic only other "Lowborn" units rather than just have everyone ignore them? It seems that peasants seeing other peasants running away would still panic, while the Imperial Guard would be like "Figures..." That might balance out the large blocks problem, as if they fail a rout test, you can get those big units running off before they can tie up anyone.
- For Cathay, it feels like it is lacking some of the magic that I assumed was there. Maybe it's just me, but whenever I pictured Cathay I pictured a great deal of magic being used by the nobility and even some of the higher-up commoners. Two suggestions:
1) Perhaps allowing Jiangjun to take a single magical level, taking the points cost out of their magical equipment allotment. This way you show off how most nobles (outside of Dynasty Warriors, who are the epitome of martial prowess) are taught and use magic.
2) Something I was considering for my own list was to create the "Dabbler" trait: a person who isn't high enough to get true training, but they still can do a low level spell. They essentially role on a d6 on a list of 6 of the lowest level spells from all the lists (essentially all the "1"s, except for Death and Shadow... though that was a flavor thing) to find out their spell. Unlike other wizards, they don't add power dice and can only use a maximum of one die; this makes them risky to try and use, but potentially gives you much more flexibility.
- Something from Wizards of the Coast D&D 3.5, but Wu-Jen in there have something called "Taboos", sort of restrictions that allow them their special brand of power. Perhaps giving them the option to take a +1 to their magic rolls for a penalty to one of their statistics to show this taboo would give them a bit more character in comparison to other wizards.
- My only other decent idea that wasn't complex (God, my Celestial Dragon monks had half a dozen options and disciplines...) was the concept of a gadget assassin. I got the idea from perusing the old GURPS Martial Arts book and coming across An Ch'i, a Chinese Martial Art specializing in gadgets. They remarked that it may have been a predecessor of ninjutsu, and it felt pretty unique. With a magically-adept nobility, it seemed logical that an assassin would specialize in neutralizing magic and avoid using it himself: Anti-Magic powder (Similar to the Magebane from saurus's list, but temporary and able to neutralize magic weapons), the fletchette staff (Think the old woman's staff from Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon), naptha bombs, a possible cloak with magic-warding abilities, etc.

But that's just me, and those are relatively small in the big picture. Again, I really love the list; it has a truly unique feel to it with massive shooting focus.

therisnosaurus
31-01-2009, 08:28
*poke* hey, rod, where've you gotten to?

Rodman49
09-02-2009, 04:22
Ack, interviews man. I'll get around to it this weekend. I have an updated list.

High Loremaster
19-02-2009, 03:34
Bump this thread - not only is this list looking cooler and cooler, but Saurus is providing a lot of good, basic information for people looking to design their own armies. The bits about the different domains and how to create armies is really helpful.

therisnosaurus
23-02-2009, 10:14
still nothing? c'mon mate, I want to get going on the next stage :D.

Hobgoblyn
25-02-2009, 09:11
Why does the army suck so hard in the gunpowder department?
The old Chinese army developed rifles before anyone else, could use rockets against the enemy, had mobile 'flamer thrower' war machines, etc...
But taking a look at your list here and comparing it to the Empire list its like you tossed them 2000 years into the past in comparison when Europe was using anything even remotely like what the Empire uses.
How little respect do you have for Eastern technology?

Is a "Cathayan Longsword" meant to be a Jin Sword? Somehow I am suspecting that you've fallen into the ridiculous and face-palm worthy katana worship and then integrated that into Cathay.
Unlike the western worship of the phallic sword to the exclusion of all weapons, you'll find that in Eastern tradition there is far more respect for weapons that actually function in combat-- namely polearms of all varieties. Dao and Jinn swords are nice-- but if you want a good Chinese-themed warrior weapon, you really ought to use an improved Halberd-style weapon.

You've also given then Phoenix (which is based on the Egyptian/Greek Phoenix rather than the Chinese Fenghuang that ought to be paired with the dragon, but.. maybe I can't expect you to know the difference) and Dragons, but disallowed them to be ridden by characters. Assumably because although Europeans are worthy of riding pegasi, gryphons and dragons, Asians don't deserve such things which goes hand in hand with what appears to be your belief that they are too stupid to be able to create or use gunpowder or steam technology.

Despite having an extra lore, you have nothing here in terms of being able to pump your magic ability beyond taking a bunch of mage characters. So you can count yet another way in which this army fails to keep up with the Empire in any way, shape or form.

Oh, and "Oriental Breath" stinks and causes everyone around them to die from just the smell of it... c.c Yeah... do I even need to comment on that more, or just point it out. Regardless of the context, the fact that you chose THAT name.. or even that you toss "Oriental" around... why not call it a "Liu Dragon"?

At this junction, before offering anything helpful, I really got to stop and ask if the designer of this list was intentionally trying to be as direspectful and offensive as humanly possible and ignore every possible historical and Warhammer reference of Cathay that might have inspired one to make a decent army?


Well, as one struggles to answer that question I'll input something creative to try to counterbalance the big wall of criticism.
Since it seems that you are struggling for a unique army technique-- why not the concept of 'Tacticians'. Probably in the place you are using 'Shugenja' right now, create a non-fighty, non-magic unit that grants nearby units on the battlefield special abilities.

For instance, a Lord could have 2 tactical points and they can use these points to make 2 units within 24" have one of the following abilities - Frenzy, Hatred (all enemies), Unbreakable, Multishot: 2 or give them +1 WS, +1BS or +2 Move until the end of the turn.

The Lord would have something similar, but be able to effect 4 units.

It would give you a unique mechanic that would allow the player to place special abilities or buffs in the army where they are needed when they are needed and the army would pay the 'cost' of those abilities in the cost of the tactical hero.

Justice And Rule
25-02-2009, 16:18
Why does the army suck so hard in the gunpowder department?
The old Chinese army developed rifles before anyone else, could use rockets against the enemy, had mobile 'flamer thrower' war machines, etc...
But taking a look at your list here and comparing it to the Empire list its like you tossed them 2000 years into the past in comparison when Europe was using anything even remotely like what the Empire uses.
How little respect do you have for Eastern technology?

I disagree; we're talking about a completely different world, and Cathay is supposed to be heavy on magic anyways. Technology could have easily taken a different route in the East, especially considering Dwarves I believe are credited with gunpowder. Why take something that is already the gimmick of two other races? The Repeater Crossbow is largely more effective for the type of army we are talking about, and it seems just as sensible.


Is a "Cathayan Longsword" meant to be a Jin Sword? Somehow I am suspecting that you've fallen into the ridiculous and face-palm worthy katana worship and then integrated that into Cathay.
Unlike the western worship of the phallic sword to the exclusion of all weapons, you'll find that in Eastern tradition there is far more respect for weapons that actually function in combat-- namely polearms of all varieties. Dao and Jinn swords are nice-- but if you want a good Chinese-themed warrior weapon, you really ought to use an improved Halberd-style weapon.

It's called a Cathayan Longsword. One would assume that it would be from Cathay, and GW made it, not him. It would seem awkward if you DIDN'T include it, considering it's one of the few pieces of Cathay that we know about.

And your complete ignorance of western weapons is stunning. Please, for the love of God, read a book on western combat and get back to me. "Western worship of the phallic sword" is easily one of the most uninformed things I've ever seen on this board...


You've also given then Phoenix (which is based on the Egyptian/Greek Phoenix rather than the Chinese Fenghuang that ought to be paired with the dragon, but.. maybe I can't expect you to know the difference) and Dragons, but disallowed them to be ridden by characters. Assumably because although Europeans are worthy of riding pegasi, gryphons and dragons, Asians don't deserve such things which goes hand in hand with what appears to be your belief that they are too stupid to be able to create or use gunpowder or steam technology.

Actually, the Phoenix is originally an Indian belief, but I suppose you're too busy being condescending to mention that... And the problem with building powers around a Fenghuang is... what powers would you use? Perhaps if you wanted to pull the Yin and Yang there, have the males use powerful Yang magic and the females use powerful Yin magic, that might work. But that's mundane, isn't it? A combination of the Western and Eastern, to make a magic-casting, self-resurrecting creature would be somewhat unique.

It's not implied at all that they're too stupid, either. Partly it seems to be a balance thing, and partly it's a fluff thing. I'll agree that they are a bit light so far on a magical beastiary, but the magical beasts they do have are both intelligent and religiously revered. Having them ride them in would be similar to having Indians have Cattle Cavalry in terms of game fluff. And you talk about "too stupid to use steam", but why are we trying to turn China into (again) "Empire-Lite"? Maybe if you wanted to use a magically-fueled war machine, but we'd have to make sure it doesn't resemble Skaven.

Once again, no solutions, just complaints.

My suggestion? I believe in the Ogre Kingdoms books it mentions the Jade Lions (Renown for their courage); this could be distinguished warriors, or it could actually be Jade-colored Lions. The Jade Lion concept could easily evolve into the sentient mounts of perhaps the Imperial Guard or something. A pounce attack (like Counter-charge/+2 Attacks when charging) along with some morale-improving bonuses for being around them ("Inspiring presence"), and you got something.


Despite having an extra lore, you have nothing here in terms of being able to pump your magic ability beyond taking a bunch of mage characters. So you can count yet another way in which this army fails to keep up with the Empire in any way, shape or form.

I do agree with this to an extent. They definitely need to be a little more powerful than other human nations in terms of bringing magic to bear. But you bring no actual solutions, so who cares what you think?


Oh, and "Oriental Breath" stinks and causes everyone around them to die from just the smell of it... c.c Yeah... do I even need to comment on that more, or just point it out. Regardless of the context, the fact that you chose THAT name.. or even that you toss "Oriental" around... why not call it a "Liu Dragon"?

I'd agree with you if you weren't being (excuse my American) an utter douche. And again, no solutions, just criticisms.



At this junction, before offering anything helpful, I really got to stop and ask if the designer of this list was intentionally trying to be as direspectful and offensive as humanly possible and ignore every possible historical and Warhammer reference of Cathay that might have inspired one to make a decent army?

They've done a decent job of trying to keep up with the stuff that is already out there. You've successfully attempted to rip him to pieces for essentially going on what they gave him (For example, Cathayan Longsword). The other problem is really not turning it into a purely historical army while giving it a unique flavor; the problem is that your suggestions essentially turn it into "The Empire Lite", which isn't really that interesting.

But if you would deign to help such peasants as us, I'm sure we'd all be overwhelmed with joy! Perhaps you could hand out more pearls of wisdom while you out of the Ivory Tower?


Well, as one struggles to answer that question I'll input something creative to try to counterbalance the big wall of criticism.
Since it seems that you are struggling for a unique army technique-- why not the concept of 'Tacticians'. Probably in the place you are using 'Shugenja' right now, create a non-fighty, non-magic unit that grants nearby units on the battlefield special abilities.

This isn't a bad suggestion for a hero type, but not as a concept to fight around. The entire game is about tactical combat; concepts are a summation of your tactics. Unless they're going to be a Jack-of-All-Trades army (Which Orks and Empire do well enough at already), I think that this would be a great gimmick-champion, but nothing bigger than that.


For instance, a Lord could have 2 tactical points and they can use these points to make 2 units within 24" have one of the following abilities - Frenzy, Hatred (all enemies), Unbreakable, Multishot: 2 or give them +1 WS, +1BS or +2 Move until the end of the turn.

The Lord would have something similar, but be able to effect 4 units.


Seems similar to what they're doing with the new Imperial Guard codex in 40K. I'd get away from simply getting characteristic bonuses and allow for special moves. For example, import the "Bladestorm" power from the Eldar 4th Edition Codex and allow a character to impart it on a unit with Repeater Crossbows; it'd fit both the current concept of the army and it's relatively simple.


It would give you a unique mechanic that would allow the player to place special abilities or buffs in the army where they are needed when they are needed and the army would pay the 'cost' of those abilities in the cost of the tactical hero.

Again, it's a cool gimmick, but not much more. Your "wisdom" is rather short-lived, overrated, and does nothing to fix most of the problems.

Hobgoblyn
25-02-2009, 17:28
When Clan Eshin and Clan Scrye's background is more or less based on them being an empire of Ratmen who COPIED Cathay and this "Skaven-like" fighting style fits better than making them a horde of unskilled, unintelligent stripped down horde (we aren't looking at having Rat Ogres, giant wheels or plague causers, so it can hardly be said to be exactly like Skavens), why exactly does it need to be avoided to the point that the army is 2000 years behind than the Empire or Brettonia and fails in every single area?

And some of the stuff, such as super ultra armor being given to half the troop types, really doesn't make much sense. Eastern armies had pikes, crossbows and guns early enough that they didn't really bother to focus on super-ultra armor that more or less impedes one's movement like the western plate-mail-covered knights. You didn't throw you best warriors at the enemy assuming that they'd survive anything that the enemy had to throw at them.

If you have lines of conscripts and peasants (particularly gun-line conscripts) then you don't need super-heavy armor on the foot soldiers and knights... the conscripts and your wizards ought to be putting out enough power to force the enemy to charge you and pikes should keep cavarly at bay-- then when the army tries to take these weak forces, you have your weaker units flee back and charge in your strong melee ones.

Regardless of where you want to argue the Phoenix came from, the Fenghuang was not a bird from fire on fire who spit fire everywhere-- one would have more reason to make the dragon from ice covered in ice spitting ice everywhere.

In order to make the army magic-heavy, you'd need some sort of special, rare or hero mount option that generates power die just like every other magic-heavy army (just like the Empire for that matter!) Giving them a bunch more wacky spells and low-tier wizard hero options a caster army does not make.

References to "Jade Lions" likely refers to the lion-dog temple guardians you can find in front of all sorts of Chinese temples and were exported to Korea and Japan and GW figured it would be more interesting to have them carved out of jade.

Similarly, you could go the route of having clay soldiers unless you wanted to save that for the Eastern version of Tomb Kings.

BTW, there is not much difference between saying that the army will have less magical creatures because they 'revere' them so they won't dare touch... exactly the same creatures that are perfectly content for the Empire to use them as mounts.
It creates a tier where the western heroes are the superiors of magical creatures and eastern ones are inferior to the same creatures. You can't possible escape that when you see heroes in one army riding dragons, gryphons and magic-creating alters and the best the heroes in the other army will get are... horses. Just plain, ordinary, run-of-the-mill horses exactly like the basic lowliest troops of the other army. How would one ever respect the later?

Justice And Rule
25-02-2009, 17:56
When Clan Eshin and Clan Scrye's background is more or less based on them being an empire of Ratmen who COPIED Cathay and this "Skaven-like" fighting style fits better than making them a horde of unskilled, unintelligent stripped down horde (we aren't looking at having Rat Ogres, giant wheels or plague causers, so it can hardly be said to be exactly like Skavens), why exactly does it need to be avoided to the point that the army is 2000 years behind than the Empire or Brettonia and fails in every single area?

A few points here:

The only thing I remember being copied from Cathay are the fighting arts of the Dragon Monks. I don't know what Clan Skryre copied, but regardless the overall fighting style of Skaven armies are not meant to be lifted from Cathay. I don't think this is ever implied anywhere; stop playing the cultural victim, because it's not working.

Secondly, it's not necessarily 2000 years behind. Again, we're in a universe with fantastic creatures and magic. No longer is the Handgun the supreme equalizer. They have repeater crossbows; would you argue that Dark Elves are also behind because they don't have gunpowder?

You are relying too much on what really happened, and not considering how things could have diverged had it been for things such as magic. Again, I agree with you that the list needs to have a magical upgrade, but I hardly feel they are "2000 Years" behind the curve, or that it's meant to be somehow condescending to Chinese history.

The biggest problem is differentiating them from the Empire; historically, the Chinese would be incredibly close to where the Empire is when it comes to a lot of its line troops (Spears, Halberds, Matchlocks, etc...) but if you follow the thread you can see that they are purposefully trying to avoid being similar to an Empire army.


And some of the stuff, such as super ultra armor being given to half the troop types, really doesn't make much sense. Eastern armies had pikes, crossbows and guns early enough that they didn't really bother to focus on super-ultra armor that more or less impedes one's movement like the western plate-mail-covered knights. You didn't throw you best warriors at the enemy assuming that they'd survive anything that the enemy had to throw at them.

The "impediment" of plate-mail-covered armor is oft overstated, but I'll let you go on that. Plus, I don't see any mention of "Tiger Armor" impeding movement as such. I cover why they might need it in the paragraph below.


If you have lines of conscripts and peasants (particularly gun-line conscripts) then you don't need super-heavy armor on the foot soldiers and knights... the conscripts and your wizards ought to be putting out enough power to force the enemy to charge you and pikes should keep cavarly at bay-- then when the army tries to take these weak forces, you have your weaker units flee back and charge in your strong melee ones.

Why couldn't you have simply said this sort of stuff from the start? I don't disagree with you, though you could make the argument that Royal Guard are armored as such because there is a chance that a province might rebel; fighting against so many missile weapons, armor would be a huge difference-maker.

Justice And Rule
25-02-2009, 18:19
Regardless of where you want to argue the Phoenix came from, the Fenghuang was not a bird from fire on fire who spit fire everywhere-- one would have more reason to make the dragon from ice covered in ice spitting ice everywhere.

Duh. The problem is, it wouldn't be very interesting in it's current mythological state. Combining the two seems like a simple option which easily rectifies the situation.


In order to make the army magic-heavy, you'd need some sort of special, rare or hero mount option that generates power die just like every other magic-heavy army (just like the Empire for that matter!) Giving them a bunch more wacky spells and low-tier wizard hero options a caster army does not make.

To an extent, yes. I had other ideas, but that was one of the simplest to integrate into any system; mine was very much a part of the army, and I'm not here to make MY army. Considering he'd already fleshed an army concept out, I figured I'd tossed my own

Generally speaking, my Cathayan Wizards would be of the 5 Elements (Each element combining two of the normal lists, giving them more options and more flexibility), and I was considering something along the lines of "Mathmagic", in which creating certain geometric formations within the army could have power-dice results. There'd be other things, too, but those were some of the starter concepts.


References to "Jade Lions" likely refers to the lion-dog temple guardians you can find in front of all sorts of Chinese temples and were exported to Korea and Japan and GW figured it would be more interesting to have them carved out of jade.

True, but it doesn't mean you have to go the completely obvious route. It's inclusion, though, seems pretty simple.


Similarly, you could go the route of having clay soldiers unless you wanted to save that for the Eastern version of Tomb Kings.


The Terracotta Warriors is a real commonality amongst Cathay lists. I thought they'd be an interesting special character-type unit, created to defend Imperial Cities. You could come up with a variant list later if you wanted to do the Army of the City of Tombs, but that's for a completely different story.


BTW, there is not much difference between saying that the army will have less magical creatures because they 'revere' them so they won't dare touch... exactly the same creatures that are perfectly content for the Empire to use them as mounts.

I didn't mean that they'd have less magical creatures; I openly admitted they needed to add more. But I simply stated that perhaps it was a respect thing that they didn't ride the Celestial Dragons or the Phoenixes.


It creates a tier where the western heroes are the superiors of magical creatures and eastern ones are inferior to the same creatures. You can't possible escape that when you see heroes in one army riding dragons, gryphons and magic-creating alters and the best the heroes in the other army will get are... horses. Just plain, ordinary, run-of-the-mill horses exactly like the basic lowliest troops of the other army. How would one ever respect the later?

I disagree with this point. We aren't talking the same sorts of creatures: the dragons of the East and West are quite obviously different, and it wouldn't be out-of-hand to treat them as their own special independent characters. If Karl Franz's horse started talking and casting magic spells... well, maybe we'd have a point. But I think that the sentience of ones in question is a point that needs to be made. I did suggest perhaps using the Jade Lions as sentient mounts, though it's not my list. I'd be open to seeing other animals on there, too (I've seen Nipponese lists that use Kirin as mounts, which is a pretty neat idea).

Seriously, though, I still think the tone of your first post was uncalled for. I hardly think either of them were attempting to somehow demean and diminish Chinese history or mythology. This is a work-in-progress.

Edit: And thinking that Cathay even needs the respect of the Empire is the problem here. The Empire likely wouldn't respect Cathay in many ways, the least of which being whether they rode on their magical animals or not. But Cathay would still crush them, and that wouldn't change at all.

theunwantedbeing
25-02-2009, 18:39
Urgh........

All I can really say about this.
Brutal list, really brutal.

Prettymuch everything in the list is underpriced by a fairly substantial amount.
Also, far too many rules and abilities which are simply ripped off other armies and then improved upon, for a decrease in cost.

This is a standard "home made" list that isnt balanced at all.

therisnosaurus
25-02-2009, 21:09
@ hobgoblyn:oh oh oh oh oh! our first bit of fanboy bile :P. How I missed this!


the big lesson I think people coming from your perspective need to learn is that GW games, systems and products are designed to be used and played by people of western persuasion. Like it or not, this is the case. Norse and dwarf units do not have scandinavian names, nor to chaos have russian ones. Lizardmen are similar, as are khemri, with some few exceptions (Ushabti was a good example brought up). Units are named in such a way that they are instantly recognizeable by an english reader. Thus, if you look in an english dictionary 'big red bird related to fire' = phoenix. Chinese myth DEFINITELY holds said big red bird related to fire (along with the dragon, tiger and tortoise we're also using), even if not called a phoenix. For simplicity of understanding, we just use the english generic, because not everyone has spent the last ten years of their life studying china and the east in detail. Budding from that, popular perception of such a bird is a flaming, regenerative burninator. Who are we to argue against that? As for being true to china, I honestly don't care, this is not china, it is Cathay. see the next paragraph.

The second lesson to learn is that we are, in the end, designing a complex system of intercorrelating statistics pertaining to the movement of little metal and plastic figures. This comes first. The game is the first priority of the games designer, the fluff, while essential, does come second. So, in this list, we made the choice that characters do not ride fancy mounts for a GAME BALANCE reason. If you would like the extended spiel, I'm happy to provide, but that really should be enough. Your argument that this is somehow disrespectful is so overwhelmingly semantic it almost takes my breath away. Perhaps there are other reasons you find this annoying you're not letting on...

So, here's a list of stuff we won't be changing any time soon:
- no ridden monsters (for balance)
- no guns (again, for balance)
- cathayan longswords (which as you suggest, are meant to represent long, straight broadswords, not katanas as GW originally intended, and will be represented as such in art and design)
-giving exceptionally powerful magic options (too much synergy with powerful shooting.)
-horde mentality: ok, so we're sort of addressing this, but not in the way you particularly want

And here's a list of concerns we will be addressing
- flame throwers/rockets: will be in the next list edition to add a bit of spice and more options
-Tacticians: are in, but not the way you described them
- spears/halberds: in some ways being fixed, in others not. Again, where not it's for game balance and subtle reasons to do with making units do the job they're supposed to.


and for a final bit of smackdown

You can't possible escape that when you see heroes in one army riding dragons, gryphons and magic-creating alters and the best the heroes in the other army will get are... horses. Just plain, ordinary, run-of-the-mill horses exactly like the basic lowliest troops of the other army. How would one ever respect the later?
Oh lord, my poor conception of beastmen and dwarfs. How ever shall I reknit thee from such a thrust to thy core? Surely I can never respect thee again...

Seriously... I understand you feel strongly about this, but if you want to come in and argue, try not to sound like a teenager pouting because his favourite character got killed off on a crappy TV soap. Make your points coherent and measured, try to understand what we're working at here, offer suggestions that aren't completely ridiculous from a game design perspective and generally try and sound like a bit less of a ****, mmk?

Hellebore
26-02-2009, 04:55
Please don't tell me this devolved into a 'you must respect China so make Cathay teh best' argument?

Warhammer is a caraciture of the ancient world. Not a single culture is represented properly or 'respectfully'. It is a fantasicisation of our history, nothing more nothing less.

I'm sure people from south america are extremely upset that they are represented in WFB as lizards. :rolleyes:

As Thereisnosaurus says, game balance is number one in a GAME. You can come up with any kind of background to justify a game rule if you want, see High Elves and the poorly thought out Always Strikes First. Or simply read every thread on here where someone thinks something GW published was dumb. Dozens of fans will jump to come up with all sorts of backbending rationalisations to apologise for it rather than admit it was stupid.

So, background can be whatever you want it to be.

Cathay is Cathay. Not China. Not China in Warhammer. CATHAY.

Perhaps I'll go and sue the Japanese government for producing animated shows with highly caricatured western people in them. It's like totally offensive and ****.

Hellebore

ChaosVC
26-02-2009, 06:12
Hi all, no disrespect meant, but I am glad GW is not ever going to come up with a Cathayan army "simply and exactly" because the south americans natives can be potrayed as fat toad cold blooded lizard. And I am sure people(mostly european) think this kind of thing is ok is also exaclty also why few south american native would want to play a GW games.

After looking at the Cathayan army list, It only comfirms my expectation that any form of creative or imaginative things that the west you create about the east is either going to go terribly wrong or misrepresented. You may say that the Norwegian being potrayed as Daemon worshipper is just as bad, but at least there is some resemblance of their Viking ancestorship there with some imaginative coolness added into it that doesn't make it look too bad(you can't go wrong with pagan people with long ship and big axe), unless you are a bible thumping Norwegian Chirstian who can't tell the difference between fantasy and realisim.

ChaosVC
26-02-2009, 06:14
Perhaps I'll go and sue the Japanese government for producing animated shows with highly caricatured western people in them. It's like totally offensive and ****.



That doesn't mean you have to do the exact same thing to make you feel better about yourself.

Hellebore
26-02-2009, 07:35
So you leave me to my caricatured Cathay and I'll leave you to your caricatured Western culture.

ChaosVC
26-02-2009, 07:52
So you leave me to my caricatured Cathay and I'll leave you to your caricatured Western culture.

Hokay:rolleyes:

therisnosaurus
26-02-2009, 08:10
Because being a race of immortal, ridiculously smart dinosaurs is horribly insulting. I mean, sure beats being a bretonnian or sylvanian or most of the empire as far as political correctness goes...

I honestly totally do not get what the grudge you people have is The only thing I can see is wanting to have your culture represented 'nicely'. News flash, EVERYBODY in warhammer is a *********. We don't make cathayans wierd and potentially assholey because they're chinese, we make them assholey because THEY EXIST IN THE WARHAMMER WORLD. It happens.

That make sense?

ChaosVC
26-02-2009, 08:22
Nope, not at all...all I am asking for is to do some home work before you start calling every cathayan warrior samurai or call some Cathayan Prince Toshiba...

What this **** holey thingy you are speaking off? You seems tense.

Actually when I say that a lord choice was called Dynasty Warrior...I totally flip and everyone else thought I gone crazy. :D I must tell this to my friends...:evilgrin:

therisnosaurus
26-02-2009, 11:18
Ok, you say we insult/misrepresent the culture. What I'm getting at is that we're not doing this because we haven't done our homework, nor are we doing it because we have some stupid preconception of, for the sake of example, chinese people and china.

The main reason for all the wierdness, the slightly controversial and the generally insane is just that warhammmer races are not meant to be particularly strong, cohesive, or nice on a 'glorious culture' front. They're very much distopic. Where they aren't distopic, they're light hearted in an incisive, snarky way- see lizardmen character names, empire accoutrements (powder monkey anyone?) and pretty much the entire orc and goblin army. Warhammer does this to ALL cultures. It's part of the background, part of the game. Why shouldn't it apply to cathay as much as to anyone else?

To add to that, most of the factions are ruthless if not outright evil. This is part of warhammer again, and fits all factions. even the prettyboy high elves are arrogant super tards at times, parodying greco-roman racial superiority tendencies. That's what I meant by ********yness. Everyone's a bastard in warhammer.

How's that?

therisnosaurus
26-02-2009, 12:40
Righto, since rod seems to have dropped off the radar for the time being, I don't want to see the awesome ideas he had go to waste, so I've taken the liberty of writing them up. A lot of the names and some of the abilities are placeholders here, but the overall tone of the list is true to what he wanted. When he posts the official list, I'll update this one since the formatting is all nice any shiny. probably a lot of mistakes as I threw this together in about a day, but hopefully it's sufficient for people to give some commentary on the latest state of the list

edit: first mistake spotted, lancers should not be able to take shields

Condottiere
26-02-2009, 13:35
The codices, whether official or fan-made, should be viewed within the context they are presented.

As regards to anime, the Japanese stereotype both themselves and foreigners.

Hellebore
26-02-2009, 21:49
The codices, whether official or fan-made, should be viewed within the context they are presented.

As regards to anime, the Japanese stereotype both themselves and foreigners.

As regards to warhammer, the Europeans stereotype both themselves and foreigners.

For some reason though, Europeans can't do that, but Asians can. Apparently.

Hellebore

ChaosVC
26-02-2009, 23:52
@therisnosaurus

I don't think it as insulting the chinese culture, it just a problem of ignorance for other's culture and I here to help you with that, but at least get the culture part right, I don't really care if you make the Cathayan the super evil bastards that pretend to be the all righteous super nation. Again I ask for is to get the culture, the names, the thing that exist right. Just like how empire back ground is borrowed from the Holy Roman Empire, Cathayan back ground can be borrowed from the Ming Dynasty of China which is the same time line of the Holy Roman Empire. Do some research, extra knowledge doesn't hurt.

therisnosaurus
27-02-2009, 03:28
I'm all for borrowing from china exclusively if it doesn't affect the design negatively, but not a specific period. I think if brets and empire can exist side by side, then synching time periods matters not a jot. However, good to see it cleared up, can we get off the name calling for now and get some thoughts on the new list?

ChaosVC
27-02-2009, 04:18
What name Calling? Again if you want to be inspired by a different time period of the Chinese history feel free, but get it right.

therisnosaurus
27-02-2009, 05:55
Perhaps acrimony may have been a better term. But I repeat, can we please keep comments to the list for the moment?

ChaosVC
27-02-2009, 06:39
Its terrible.

ChaosVC
27-02-2009, 07:10
Just messing around with you.:D All I can say now is I have mixed feeling after looking at the list. Will give you my full review when I actually have the time.

Byakuten
27-02-2009, 22:57
I think it's a pretty decent army list. The one thing that I don't really like is the lack of named characters. Yeah, it's a small nitpick, but sometimes, I think its the named ones that brings a dash of flavor to an army. Anyways, I've been considering writing my own Cathay codex when I stumbled upon this thread, and I already had some initial plans on the Named Characters for the most part. Alls likely, I'll end up using your list:D (Its just that awesome), but I don't want my guys to die out yet. So if you are interested, I could post my Named Character ideas.

P.S. For the record, I'm Chinese. There are a one other at my LGS that also wrote a Cathayan list. Somehow, it ended being 40% Nipponese, 40% Cathayan, and 20% what-ever-Korean-equivalent is. For the most part, I ended staring at the list in humorous disbelief before decimating the proxy models in battle. It was interesting, and I ended up helping him with some idea for a new version, which sparked my personal ideas.

therisnosaurus
28-02-2009, 02:08
Rod and I do have plans for special characters. Currently, using the standard 'typings' we have one for the 'overlord' (karl franz, archaon, Gorbad) slot and one for the 'archmage' (teclis, morathi, the fey enchantress) slot, representing the emperor and empress. We will also likely have a butcher (grimgor, skarbrand, tyrion) type lord based on a legendary warrior template.

Other ideas are a shooty hero, a strategist hero and a hybrid fighty/magic priest (more fighty than usual) probably from the tiger temple, though that's just speculation on my part. You're welcome to provide whatever ideas you wish to. Obviously, however, I can't guarantee rod'll use them

Byakuten
28-02-2009, 19:00
O_o... Wow, the other ideas section you have just coincide with the ideas I have.

Shooty hero -120 pts
M 6 WS 2 BS 5 S 4 T 3 W 2 I 5 A 1 Ld 8

Special Rules
Master of Archery: Every shooting phase, [insert hero name] may make D3 shooting attacks and ignores any modifiers due to multiple firing.

Storm of Arrows. If [insert hero name] is part of the unit at the start of the player phase and the unit has not moved during the movement phase, then the unit may use Storm of arrows. All models within the unit (except [insert hero name] may make their attacks, as if they were all in the front rank. All hits are resolved at a BS1. The unit may not move the following turn.

Magical Equipment
Falcon's Claw: Magical longbow. All attacks by [insert hero name] ignores cover.

Cloak of shadows: [insert hero name] always counts as in soft cover, unless [inset hero name] joins a unit.

Strategist hero - 135 pts
M 4 WS 2 BS 0 S 3 T 4 I 2 A 1 Ld 10

Special rules
Master strategist: choose one. Once every turn, the unit that [insert hero name] joined may make an additional move, resolves at half their total movement
-or-
The unit [insert hero name] may choose to fail their break test. When breaking off, the opposing unit may not pursue and the unit automatically rallies the next player turn.

Magical Items
Huan-Ma-Gua (Golden Dragon Robes): Grants [insert hero name] a 5+ ward save.

And that's about it. I have two more in the works, however I'm still trying to fully decide what to do with them. If you want some fluff to go with the characters, I have some, but I figured you just need to rules to decide if you like them before you start thinking fluffy.

Justice And Rule
04-03-2009, 22:40
Bump this up. I want to hear the background you guys are putting to this. :)

therisnosaurus
05-03-2009, 00:49
hopefully rod'll be back soon. I really don't want to see this die. If you want to bump, talk about the list. Without feedback we can't really make changes. Without changes, we won't get a solid list. Without a solid list, we won't be able to flesh out the background

UltimateNagash
16-03-2009, 11:33
For the butcher, would it be wrong to suggest a Dragon/Human hybrid. A pretty common archetype in fantasy scenarios that hasn't appeared Warhammer as of yet. I'm personally not very keen on them, but could very well fit in with the style of the army. Or maybe a incarnation of a Phoenix in human form, able to reincarnate itself whenever killed on a 3+ or something? But he/she can't be the general, and is purely a fighter (doesn't have any magic items either, just good stats, flaming attacks, a ward save and the ability to reincarnate)?

If you're going for Tiger Temple fighty hero, may I recommend using this rule:

At the start of any round of combat, before challenges are issued and impact hits are resolved, you may swap X with any other model in the same unit, as long as X is moved to a position that is in contact with the enemy. X may not use this ability if he is in a challenge, or if he cannot move for any other reason.

Also, I think an Engineer style special character wouldn't go amiss, possibly as a unit upgrade? In that he's just there in the army list (a bit like DE Assassins, in that you can add him to any one war machine).

Then maybe have one last special character also as a unit upgrade, maybe a character for the Imperial Guard, and they have a bodyguard style rule, as well as abilities focusing on challenges. Below is just an idea based on Chakax from the Lizardmen book.


One Imperial Guard unit in the army may include X instead of a Duifu for 180 Points.

M WS BS S T W I A Ld
4 4 4 4 3 1 4 2 8
Equipment:

Longsword of Destiny
Repeater Crossbow
Tiger Armour

Special Rules:

Peerless Archery
Bodyguard
Death Before Failure
Challenge of Fates

Longsword of Destiny (Magic Weapon):
If X is involved in a challenge, he gains the Always Strikes First rule, and may re-roll all failed rolls to wound.

Death Before Failure:
X must always issue a challenge and can never refuse one. When fighting in a challenge, X counts as Toughness 5.
When in a unit joined be a character, X, the character and the unit are Unbreakable and may re-roll any failed 'look out sir' rolls.

Challenge of Fates:
When he is fighting in a challenge, X is immune to Poisoned Attacks and the Killing Blow special rule.

Just some thoughts and ideas

UltimateNagash
17-03-2009, 11:33
Double post/bump :D

I came up with this stuff while dreaming (yes, I know, sad. But it was better than the only other thing I could dream about, which is the CW I should be doing :D). Attached is just a few ideas and thoughts, more focused on the monks and monsters than anything. I've tried to exemplify the strike fast, but low defence style of Elves - both the monks and Phoenix are T3, but each have their own ways of getting round this.

Just a few thoughts really, but one thing I did really like was the idea of the Phoenix/Dragon duality. One is the aspect of fire, the other the aspect of water aka, the classic (though more Japanese idea) or a River Dragon...

cyberspite
17-03-2009, 16:01
Hey, just stumbled upon this thread and I have a couple of ideas, I think waaay back GW usd to do temple guard models that were essentially samurai type characters riding magically animated stone lions (like you see 'guarding' chinese temples), they were really chunky like juggernoughts. Might not fit with the style of your list though as they would be elite heavy cavalry. Another idea would be fireworks, I'm sure the chinese invented them as weapons, like rockets, while everyone else was still using pointy sticks. Just thought I'd share these ideas, sorry if they have already been mentioned

therisnosaurus
21-03-2009, 23:15
@ cyberspite:

Yeah, linebreaker cavalry won't fit because of the army playstyle and we already have supercav. It's concievable that if rod likes the idea we could mount them on special mounts of some kind, but I don't want to overcomplicate things.

@UN: I like the rule for the tiger character, and also quite like the champion upgrade dude (though unbreakable is too far for the cathay playstyle, so no stubborn/UB, just the challenge rules). might have him be able to be fielded in units of tiger guard/houseguard with his points ammended so he's on a barded steed in the latter. but again, not my decision really


@ all: I've come up with a preliminary list of magic items on Rod's suggestion We may also transfer across some of the items from my old cathay book if they stand up to scrutiny. No points costs yet, but assume that if it's good, it costs a lot :P

Magic weapons:
Bow: Dragontooth bow. No armor saves
Longbow: Bearer’s strength, D3 wounds.
Rxbow: Lotus needle: automatically wounds
Rxbow: the bow of thorns: for each hit unit must pass a strength test or subtract -2 from their base movement the following turn.
Halberd: xy’s glaive: will never hit or wound on worse than a 4+.
Halberd: always strikes first.
Sword: +2 attacks, flaming
Sword: for each successful hit an enemy scores, the character may make one attack back at the same strength.
Great weapon: Staff of the tortoise: enemy attacking the character gain no charging benefits
Sword: killing blow
Spear: attacks pierce ranks in the same way as a bolt thrower.

Magic armor:
Helm: Tigerhelm: +1 armor save, cause fear
Tiger armor: Armor of a a thousand teeth: for each successful save the character makes the enemy takes a str 4 hit.
Tiger armor: Armor of the thunderstorm: character and unit immune to lightning based attacks, and enemy fire is at -1 to hit character and unit
Heavy armor: regenerate
Heavy armor: 5+ ward save
Light armor: +1 toughness, +1 wound, -2 initiative
Shield: Character and unit count as holding a defended obstacle the first time they are charged.

Enchanted item:
Amulet of the imperial champion: +1 strength for each point of rank bonus.
Phoenix bolts: +1 strength, flaming. Any number of characters may take these.
Dragon bolts: units suffering a casualty must take a panic test
The book of zx: at the beginning of battle roll a d6: 1-3 character and unit always count as being in the flank of an enemy (ignore rank bonus, +1, ignore shield bonus etc) 4-6: when the character or unit marches or charges, they triple their movement instead of doubling it
The mark of zw: level 1 wizard, choose first spell from any lore.
Sunshroud mirror: enemy charging suffer -1 to hit.
Broken shard of heaven: bound spell, portent of far on the character and his unit 15pts.


Talisman:
Robe of phoenix down: character gains a 4+ ward save when they have one wound remaining
Tigerheart pendant: Character and unit may always strike with their full number of attacks, regardless of enemy abilities, items or spells. In addition, the character and unit will always strike, even if they are slain that turn before they would normally do so.
Circlet of victory: if the character causes a wound, he gains a 5+ ward save until the beginning of his next turn.
Jet dragon: units (friend or foe) within 12” gain MR2
Jewel of humility: the first time an enemy wizard casts with irresistible force, he must also roll on the miscast table. (the spell is still cast with irresistible force regardless of the result)

Arcane items:
Trappings of the warrior disciple: +2 power dice, cannot be used on prayers
ZY’s beads of meditation: +1 to the result of dice used to cast prayers
The book of day and night: Priest gains a new prayer. Each successful dice grants you +1 dispel dice and +1 to dispel rolls (cumulative) the following turn.
Badge of office: Contains the first spell of the lore known by the bearer as a bound spell at power level (4)
Scroll of divine insight: one use only, you may add 1 level to a prayer as if you had rolled one more successful dice. You may only use one scroll of divine insight per wizard per turn.
Staff of the warrior mage: add +2 to casting rolls and prayer dice if in base contact with an enemy. Also grants the bearer +2 strength and always strikes last in close combat
Temple robes: For each spell the bearer casts successfully, he gains a cumulative +1 bonus to any further attempts to cast spells that turn

therisnosaurus
22-03-2009, 02:39
a little bit of art, some concept sketches of cathayan weapons

The repeater was a pain, trying to get something that looked fantasy enough but different from the dark elf ones was tricky, but I do like the end result.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v485/thereisnosaurus/cathayarmorycopy.jpg

UltimateNagash
23-03-2009, 11:12
@UN: I like the rule for the tiger character, and also quite like the champion upgrade dude (though unbreakable is too far for the cathay playstyle, so no stubborn/UB, just the challenge rules). might have him be able to be fielded in units of tiger guard/houseguard with his points ammended so he's on a barded steed in the latter. but again, not my decision really
He's just an idea, as was the stuff I came up with in that document I posted. Just wanted to put my thoughts down on paper, so to speak ;)


@ all: I've come up with a preliminary list of magic items on Rod's suggestion We may also transfer across some of the items from my old cathay book if they stand up to scrutiny. No points costs yet, but assume that if it's good, it costs a lot :P
Just some thoughts:

The Bow of Thorns - That for every hit they take a Strength test, and if they fail one or more, they are subject to that penalty? Also, that would damn cripple Dwarfs

Longbow: Bearer’s strength, D3 wounds. Gotta be careful with that, you know, what with the S7 DE Shurikens ;)

Staff of the Tortoise - If you're going to do that, I would just make it 30/35 points and have it as the VC Nightshroud. But that's me

Armor of a Thousand Teeth - That's gonna be alot of strikes. It'll have to be damn expensive, as I mean, look at the DE Black Amulet, which is damn costly. At least 50 points eh?

Armor of the Thunderstorm - When you say enemy fire, do you mean shooting attacks? Best to be clear with these things, eh? ;)

Light armor: +1 toughness, +1 wound, -2 initiative. Will need to be pretty expenxive. I would just make it Initiative 1.

Amulet of the Imperial Champion - that his units RB or the enemies?

Robe of Phoenix Down - I see what you did there, but the name sounds a bit off. Also, quite specific and probably not that useful.

Circlet of Victory - That's gonna have to be, what, like, 10 or 15 points max?

The rest looks good, only 37? Gonna have, what, 6-8 banners then?

Sketches look good BTW :)

Also, I've redone that bodyguard character as a Hero choice, and added in background (also got a sketch which will be uploaded when I get back from uni ;)). Check it out:

UltimateNagash
23-03-2009, 18:46
Right, OK, so here's a couple of hours worth of ideas, with 7 new Special Characters, as well as Shan To.

The Dragon Emperor: He's your basic aura boosting character, with alot of self preservation effects because, well, he's the Emperor of Cathy. So yeah... I imagine him to be a noble in robes (my attempt at drawing him didn't go very well ;)), maybe something like this (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/4/42/Chinese_Armor_8.JPG)?. Perhaps he can choose to be mounted on a horse or chariot?

The Phoenix Empress: Trying to differentiate between the two rulers, she's much more aggressive and dangerous, but has no protection beyond Regeneration and the ability to revive. I imagine her to be all flamey, like the Phoenix Force, especially from the Ultimate version, as seen here (http://images.wizarduniverse.com/WizardUniverse/Previews/PREV423/UE429-3.jpg).

Yue Fai (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Yue_Fei): He's the fighty Lord character, who really exemplifies the strike hard and kill everything, otherwise you die kind of fighting. I based him off this cool picture (http://www.orientaloutpost.com/usa/1464.jpg) of Yue Fei. As you can probably tell, the names aren't the most imaginative ;)

Shan To: This guy is a C&P from my early post, and my sketch is included below. His armour is somewhat based on the one here (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/3/37/Chinese_Armor_4.JPG)

Wu Chun-Yo (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wu_Ch%27uan-yu): You've seen him before as well, I've just changed the name and added a new rule which I came up with on the bus to uni :D It's pretty nasty, but also shows just how powerful a fighter he is.

Hyouni (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Houyi): If anyone has read DC comics 52, you'll know what I mean by saying he looks liked the Celestial Archer from there. He can be somewhat seen at the bottom of this picture (http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/a/a3/Great10.PNG). He's pretty much the ultimate archer, and gets to use the 'Elemental Quiver' idea I've had for so long.

Zou Tong (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zhou_Tong_(archer)): This guy, and the person below I thought of after reading into Chinese history. This guy is my idea of a teacher style character, another passive character, except he's also pretty good at shooting things as well.

Li Zayshen (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lu_Zhishen): Not too keen on this guy, with some C&P rules. I'm working on ideas for him atm, trying to think of a way to weave in drunken fighting styles into his rules. So yeah, just a placeholder really, as the real life history between Zou Tong and Lu Zayshen is pretty cool IMO.

So yeah, let me know what you think, as I spent a bit of time on them ;)

therisnosaurus
24-03-2009, 03:24
The Bow of Thorns - That for every hit they take a Strength test, and if they fail one or more, they are subject to that penalty? Also, that would damn cripple Dwarfs

>>> nasty yes, but not tremendously reliable, will also probably be around 40pts, so a good option, but not a brutal one

Longbow: Bearer’s strength, D3 wounds. Gotta be careful with that, you know, what with the S7 DE Shurikens

>>>Theoretically you can get a str 7 shot doing d3 wounds with this and the amulet of the imperial champion, but only on a lord, and it's most (70pts or so) of his magic allwowance, about the same as a dwarf bolt thrower of equivalent power. In most cases it'll just be str 4.

Staff of the Tortoise - If you're going to do that, I would just make it 30/35 points and have it as the VC Nightshroud. But that's me

>> I want the bearer to still strike last, but negate lances/attack benefits etc

Armor of a Thousand Teeth - That's gonna be alot of strikes. It'll have to be damn expensive, as I mean, look at the DE Black Amulet, which is damn costly. At least 50 points eh?

>> probably 45. Not actually that fantastic when you consider that people will in most cases just choose not to attack the character and hit the squishy low ws/T humans next to him.

Armor of the Thunderstorm - When you say enemy fire, do you mean shooting attacks? Best to be clear with these things, eh?

>> yes, shooting attacks, when (if) I write these up properly, that will be the defnitiion used

Light armor: +1 toughness, +1 wound, -2 initiative. Will need to be pretty expenxive. I would just make it Initiative 1.

>> will only be 50pts. Undercosted (should be about 65) but the fact it's only light armor means while being tougher, the character will be more vulnerable

Amulet of the Imperial Champion - that his units RB or the enemies?

>> his unit's RB

Robe of Phoenix Down - I see what you did there, but the name sounds a bit off. Also, quite specific and probably not that useful.

>> it's an in joke, a nod to final fantasy's phoenix down item that resurrects people

Circlet of Victory - That's gonna have to be, what, like, 10 or 15 points max?

>> 15, yeah

The rest looks good, only 37? Gonna have, what, 6-8 banners then?

>> probably eight yes. and some really good ones too :D

UltimateNagash
24-03-2009, 11:15
>>> nasty yes, but not tremendously reliable, will also probably be around 40pts, so a good option, but not a brutal one
An average unit will fail the test half the time, so, kinda reliable...

>>>Theoretically you can get a str 7 shot doing d3 wounds with this and the amulet of the imperial champion, but only on a lord, and it's most (70pts or so) of his magic allwowance, about the same as a dwarf bolt thrower of equivalent power. In most cases it'll just be str 4.
Yes, but a S7 360 degree LoS character could kill chariots far better than a Dward Bolt Thrower...

>> I want the bearer to still strike last, but negate lances/attack benefits etc
Ah, does it also mean that Hatred is lost then?

>> probably 45. Not actually that fantastic when you consider that people will in most cases just choose not to attack the character and hit the squishy low ws/T humans next to him.
Then it is doing it's job, protecting him though ;)

>> yes, shooting attacks, when (if) I write these up properly, that will be the defnitiion used
Yes, best do that :p

>> will only be 50pts. Undercosted (should be about 65) but the fact it's only light armor means while being tougher, the character will be more vulnerable
So, you want Heroes to get it to? Because light armour isn't much of a disadvantage. Shove him on a chariot or a barded horse with shield and he's somewhat harder... Especially a chariot IMO...

>> his unit's RB
Right, wasn't clear at all ;)

>> it's an in joke, a nod to final fantasy's phoenix down item that resurrects people
As I said, I see what you did there, but it sounds quite rubbish TBH. Could use Phoenix Pinion though ;)

>> 15, yeah
Good good ;)

>> probably eight yes. and some really good ones too
And some rubbish ones then? :p

therisnosaurus
04-04-2009, 09:34
Rod has vamoosed yet again, so I'm gonna keep pushing this along here and there since he said he wants something ready for baltimore games day. That would be cool, but I can't really do this all alone without comments/support/checking and such. So dig in.

V0.07:

Content:
- added a complete draft magic items section
- 11 magic weapons
- 7 magic armours
- 9 enchanted items
- 7 arcane items
- 5 talismans
- 9 magic banners
- 48 magic items total
- added weapon concept art.

Fixes:
- tweaked casting rules for prayers to be more coherent
- Fire lances no longer grant +1 strength at all times
- Cataphracts now come with bows, not RXBs
- Lancers now come with RXBs, not bows
- Lancers can no longer take shields
- Lancers cost raised to 22 points (from 19)
- Lancers can now purchase phoenix bolts for 3ppm.
- Tiger guard reduced to 13 points (from 15)
- Changed some definitions (skirmishers >skirmish for example)
- Imperial Houseguard now come with Cathayan Longswords and can swap them for halberds

therisnosaurus
06-04-2009, 23:04
I've just noticed another pretty bad error in the doc,

Imperial archery currently reads: no move and fire penalty, US20+ units get no long range penalty.

This is wrong, it should be no STAND AND SHOOT penalty, US20+ units get no long range penalty.


Leeeeeetle bit OP if it's the former...

GuyLeCheval
07-04-2009, 18:42
Gotta say I liked your previous list more Therisnosaurus...

therisnosaurus
07-04-2009, 23:29
That's probably for one of two reasons-

1) it had background, which this will too eventually, and I'm probably going to be writing that as rod thinks it up. Further that background was more based on many cultures, including korea and japan. This cathay will have that too, but it will express itself less in the unit designs.

2) it was broader and more flexible, which is great, but unfortunately not the best thing for an army book in the traditional sense. it leads to balance issues and

GuyLeCheval
08-04-2009, 05:39
And 3)

This isn't really unique. This won't have any differeent playstile from, let's say empire.

therisnosaurus
08-04-2009, 07:24
um what? howwwwwwwww....

it'll be at least as different from empire as bretonnia is, if not significantly more. No other army has this level of shooting, not even wood elves. And shooting heavy WE, empire or Dwarf armies are almost always quite static, where even a very shooting heavy cathay army is quite the opposite.

Edit: It might serve you well to make a list or two :), or even playest if you've a mind. I can guarantee the playstyle of this list will be as different from empire as my cathay was.

therisnosaurus
08-04-2009, 07:49
a decidedly unexiting WiP of some imperial infantry. It's REALLY hard to get missile infantry looking dynamic without a LOT of work, so I don't utterly hate it, but it's not particularly warhammery. I'm gonna try and rectify that with a lot more fancy stuff in the final draft

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v485/thereisnosaurus/imperialinfantrycopy.jpg

Justice And Rule
09-04-2009, 18:07
If you're looking for figures to stand in, The Assault Group (http://www.theassaultgroup.co.uk/store/home.php?cat=55) makes a great variety of Chinese. Close to GW prices (Though no shipping anywhere in the world is certainly nice!), and could cover a variety of different areas.

Enjoying things so far; I like the melding of history and fantasy a lot better than the last one, which was too mystical for my own tastes.

therisnosaurus
13-04-2009, 11:17
don't particularly like those models, but they're not bad just for armor references I guess.

We've made another tweak or two

- all priests cast on a 4+ now and the costs are reduced to 90 for a priest and 190 for a lord.
- fixed the imperial archery thing to be stand and shoot and not move and fire

Morathi's Darkest Sin
13-04-2009, 15:44
Hmmm, interesting work. Surprised there hasn't been a play on the three Brothers for a Special Character, as there is nothing like that currently in Warhammer.

Other than that the only other thing that seems to be missing is the referenced 'Monkey men' that has come up in a few places over the years in GW fluff and map references etc. Oh and pretty sure they make mention of Temple Dogs as well.

Seems some nice ideas though, mind you I'd still rather a offical GW list for the models really more than anything else. :)

kikkoman
13-04-2009, 23:53
Here's some paintings for inspiration then

These are mostly Warring States era, so 200BC or so, to early Han.


Warhammer is vaguely in the 1600's right?


Is this Rodman or Thereisnosaurus's army list?

therisnosaurus
14-04-2009, 01:13
it's rodman's. He comes up with all the ideas for units (except for disciple priests, those were my idea) and their basic roles, I then beat him around the head with a cricket bat until they work within the game and army. I'm also a fairly dab hand using MSword for formatting so though I wasn't planning on actually producing the PDFs, it seems to work and Rod's happy with it.

as far as background goes, again, he will come up with the ideas and I'll probably write them up into the books.

therisnosaurus
14-05-2009, 14:29
update: I do not know what's happening. Rod has dropped off the face of the earth again. If I don't hear from him I may continue to work on this on my own (or if I can get his permission) because I don't want to see it utterly die. Might take a bit longer with just me but we can work something...

therisnosaurus
27-06-2009, 23:57
I kinda want to get this back on track, so I'll be doing some work on it over the next few weeks. Before I start though, anyone interested in throwing a few more comments to the wind?