View Full Version : Starting WotR.. couple questions

28-04-2009, 13:18
Hey everyone, So a few of my friends and I have decided to start WotR. We are veteran fantasy players that are looking for a more balanced game that is more fun and a little less time consuming. Anywho, I was just wondering if anyone out there has made a similar transition and their thoughts on the new game? Also, I'm trying to decide between elves and dwarves, any recommendations would be great! Thanks!

28-04-2009, 13:50
Here's something I wrote up awhile back about some initial impressions of WotR and a comparison with WFB on our gamestore's forums:

Overall Thoughts
1) The game flows very nicely. We played 1000 points and were able to finish 2 games in the space of about 4.5 hours and we were new at the game. The fact stuff just happens and you only have to roll once to do what you need is a great change. All fighting is just caculating how many attacks you get (which is easy) then rolling the dice and finding out how many hits were scored (just a strength vs defense table). When you find out how many hits you did, enemy models are removed and things keep going. You don't have to roll to hit, then roll to wound, then roll to save, then roll to ward save, then roll to regenerate save. Overall, the pace of the game started intense from the beginning (more on this later) and kept up until the end. There isn't as much setup to a few really big rounds as there are in WFB.

2) The system is simple on the surface, but can get pretty complex once you get into it. At first the game really looks like one of "you need more 6s then your opponent and that's all." After you start playing you figure out that you get bonuses for maneuvering (you either slow down your opponent by getting close, and on flank/rear attacks you can reduce their defense or reduce their attacks or both). The main thing is spending might on heroic/epic actions, stacking spells and managing more of the risk inherent in the game compared to WFB. I'll get into this a bit more in the comparison section, but there is a lot of room for thinking. When to use a heroic/epic action can turn a phase or a battle and anticipating your oppoenent's actions and trying to head them off with yours adds another level of tactics which I really am enjoying. Those familiar with the LotR SBG should know what I'm talking about, but it's taken to another level here with the new epic actions.

Comparison with WFB (and to some extent 40k where appropriate)
1) Army structure. The game gives you about the same freedom as WFB where WFB has the lords/heroes/core/special/rare selection where this has the epic hero/legendary formations/rare formations/common formations. In WFB you can have minimal core and spend a small % of the list in it, then have a ton of elite formations and characters. Hence, core can get pushed aside to get the miminum possible and move on. In this, there are no limit on epic heroes or legendary formations other then you can only have 1 of each one (and only 1 total of any named character) but the rare formations are not only limited by the number of core formations (if you have 3 core formations, you can only have up to 3 rare formations) but also the number of rare companies in the formations can't outnumber the rare companies (IE, you can't have 3 minimal common formations of 1 company each, then have 3 rare formations of 6 companies each).

2) Heroes work vastly different then WFB. In most games the heroes are the real beatsticks and maul troops once they get into combat. A lot of times the units the heroes are in just function as delivery systems and as static combat resolution for the character while the character goes about it's business. In WotR it isn't this way at all. Yes, there are some monsterous characters like the Balrog, Glorfindel, or formations of characters like the three hunters or the fellowship of the ring that get to attack on their own, but they're fairly rare and very special. Mainly, epic characters are attached to units and can move between them, but cannot function outside of a unit. When in a formation, they can pass off their fight value to their company in the formation and can pass their courage to the formation as a whole but that's it. They don't actually fight the opposing formation unless they try to duel the opposing hero. They're there to lead rather then to do the bulk of the fighting. What's important is the might they bring along and the heroic and epic actions they can call as well as any benefits they may bring for the formation to allow it to do it's thing. It's a difference, but a welcome one in my eyes. The formations do the fighting while the heroes do the leading. The heroes can vastly alter the outcome of the battle through their might points, but knowing when to do what is important and will be the real key.

2) There's a bit more randomness to the game, but it's effect is that you have to manage the risk of the game a bit better. Unlike Fantasy, you don't just get to charge or march. The charge phase is separate from the move phase. You move, then shoot, then charge, then fight. If you shoot you can't charge unless you have a rule that lets you. You start off by moving and you can only move half speed if there is enemy within 6". After you move, if you want and have a hero in the unit you can attempt an "at the double!". For the at the double, the unit makes a courage test (with a -1 if they're within 6" of the enemy). If passed you get to move a second time but cannot do it again. What this means is you can move very fast (normal troop movements are 6-12") but with the nature of the needed courage test is that if you attempt it you can have a disjointed line if you start failing. For example in my 2nd game, I doubled one unit 24" total, but the supporting units failed their tests which left that unit out on it's own and it got charged in the front and to the flank by 2 separate units. I liked that I could do more (further movement distances) but it was more risky if I tried it.
3) Shooting isn't as bad, but is more constant. In WFB, shooting is really good the first turn or two if you have the better weapons (IE not bows) but after the first turn or two, either the opponent is horridly mauled by it or the units get stuck in and the shooters don't get to do much. In this most shooting will need a 6 to do a hit and kill a guy, but shooting occurs after movement and before charging. Since units seperate after they fight every round, you can always shoot at a unit you can see and within range which is nice. Shooting does it's job IMO. It doesn't wipe out entire big units, but softens them up and shields realy help to blunt how well it does.

4) Cavalry aren't the gods of the battlefields like they are in fantasy. In fantasy, a heavy cav unit is good on the charge, but if they get stuck in for a few turns they can usually hold their own since they still fight just as well as infantry but also have a better armor save plus their mount's attacks. Unless they go up against something that's great armor or has a ton of static resolution they're fine. In WotR they aren't that way. I really don't think a large unit of cav can handle a large unit of infantry without help. Cav get a huge charge bonus (+6 attacks per company rather then +1 that infantry receive) but have a lower base attacks then infantry (2 for cav vs 8 for infantry). Cav always get to strike first so if they're charging cav will have roughly the same amount of attacks but get to remove their kills first. If they get charged, they'll still get to attack first but get 1/3 to 1/4 of the attack in general of the infantry.

Another wrinkle is that unlike fantasy, models that are killed still get to fight and you don't wipe out the front rank and nobody fights back. In this if you wipe out a company, a rear company is removed and the one you're fighting still attacks you. Hence you can't charge in, do a few kills then not suffer much in return. For example, I had a formation of 9 companies of orcs with great weapons. James charged in with his 2 formations of riders of rohan and killed 3.5 companies of guys. But the rest of my stuff still struck back and killed a lot of his guys in return. His cav couldn't just charge in there kill a bunch and suffer nothing in return. Now, combat resolution is done solely by kills ala 40k (not wounds done though so slight difference) so I still lost and had to do my panic test but what didn't happen is him charging and only me losing guys. The infantry ended up wearing down the cav because they could take the punch and still punch back.

5) Fights aren't minor affairs where you look for one side to break and be run down. In WFB I've lost track of the amount of times one side killed 1 guy the other killed 2, one side broke and got run down. End result: 3 guys killed out of the 40 in the fight, one side lost an entire unit. Half the time one side breaks because it's scared of a banner or the fact that the other side is ranked up nicely. Meanwhile most of the kills will come from that hero in the front with the great weapon or magic weapon. In this, models fight, models die. One battle I lost 18 guys and he lost 6 knights, then did a heroic fight, fought me again that turn and the result happened again. I lost 5 companies of guys total and he lost 6 companies of knights. We did have several fights where a less guys were killed. However there isn't a point where a healthy company loses a minor part of it and is wipe out immediately. The loser takes a panic check. They roll 1 dice for a panic check. On a 1 they're disordered and they make a courage test (like a LD test) and suffer a number of wounds by which they failed if they fail and if the formation is under 50% of the starting number of companies they're destroyed totally. On a 2-5 it's the same as a 1 without the 50% bit, on a 6 they're fine. Disordered affects the number of attacks the unit gets. There also isn't any panic or anything so you don't just lose units because they fail one check and run away.

6) Magic didn't prove to be overpowering and you don't have to take extra measures to deal with it, but it is useful. In fantasy magic usually proves to be an all or nothing affair and you have to spend points to take dice or dispel scrolls or suffer. In this, might is your defense and comes naturally on your heroes. The spells are also mainly buffs/debuffs as well. You get your first spell automatically and if you get to cast more you can try against the spell's focus. IE, if you have a wizard with a level 3, his first spell goes off without rolling, but if he wants to cast a focus 3 spell next he has to make a 3+ on the casting dice for that spell. You can cast as many different spells as your level. Some spells are counterspells and happen automatically. IE, If I cast Wings of Darkness on my unit and you cast immobilize on it, immobilize doesn't affect them but wings of darkness is lost. The spells state what spells they act as counterspells too. Overall, it's a nice system. They're effective without controlling the battle from our experience and have a layer of strategy as they can affect each other.

28-04-2009, 14:09
Excellent! Thank you so much for the valuable feedback!

28-04-2009, 15:47
This is a very good write up in comparison to the other two games. As a long time warhammer fantasy fan i can say that the smoothness of WotR is much appreciated. Once i get more games in(and enough models :angel: ) i can experience the larger battles that WotR can bring and get a better opinion of it myself and not just theory but i like what i have been hearing.

28-04-2009, 15:57
Im just getting into this new game as well. Picked up the book just to have a look and see what it was about and found much to my chagrin that I just had to get some stuff.

So now working on an elven force with glorfindel and tom bombadil, my favourite characters from the book.

The one thing that really irks me thou is how annoying things tend to be packaged. In order to get the high elf models I want I have to buy 30% in human warriors I don't want. The heros thing seems to be going even worse, in order to get tom and goldberry I also had to buy 4 wraiths and 4 dead hobbits I dont really want, same thing for the white council boxed set.


28-04-2009, 16:02
For the elves, wait a while, I cant remember when they are coming out but soon they are releasing, Galadrim infantry box set and cavalry box set. check the news and rumors section of the board, there are links of the pictures of the new models. they look good too.

28-04-2009, 16:11
New elves are coming out in June:


28-04-2009, 16:42
The new elves are cool and all, I just prefer the last alliance type ones.
They seem to have a more simple and somber tone.

One thing I would really like to do is figure out how to make the galadharim knights more high elf like so that I could add them in as well.

The second thing I want to do is get a beard onto the cirdan model but im not sure how to go about either of these things, a converter i'm not unfortunately.


28-04-2009, 17:54
The second thing I want to do is get a beard onto the cirdan model

Sir, I salute your attention to detail and your devotion to the source material! :D

Lord Asuryan
28-04-2009, 18:00
I think the game is great!
most of what I'd say has already been said though, and better.

generally, though, it's a more tactical and 'realistic' game than either fantasy or 40k. there's a very few issues (like why doesn't strength 4 mean more in game terms?) etc. but overallit's awesome, expecially for a first edition.

Avatar of the Eldar
28-04-2009, 18:47
Sir, I salute your attention to detail and your devotion to the source material! :D

Second that.

02-05-2009, 18:14
nice writeup, thanks

04-05-2009, 01:11
dwarfs have a defense of 7, but can only move 5 inches. they are very good fighters, but they have trouble getting places faster lol.

i recommend elves, and get... gil-galad and cirdan in it. Gil-galad has a F of 10 so you get almost always 5 extra dice and you get a +2 to wound.