View Full Version : Thoughts on Magic in games large and small

14-07-2010, 16:18
I like the new magic system, but find it interesting that GW modeled it to be unscalable. I am not yet sure if this is a good thing or a bad thing, but I had some thoughts. The Winds of Magic will always grant 2d6 Power Dice, no matter the size of the game. This means that the impact of magic will vary, being potentially devastating in Warband levels (500-750 points), and much less so in Legendary Battles (3000+ points).

Playing the 500 point Demo games at my LGS showed just how powerful magic can be, and I think this might have something to do with the current perception that magic is OP. At 500 points, using all the current rules without change, magic can easily dominate, and those with mages will torch those without one. I hope my gaming group will modify the Warhammer Skirmish rules for use in smaller point games, which might at least mitigate some of the damage caused by enemy spell casters.

I played huge games in 6e and 7e (5000 points per side) where both sides had 18-25 Power dice; now there is a limit where adding more mages really does nothing other than increase your spell base and number of magic items. Having more than three spell casters in most armies provides huge diminishing returns. One the other hand, armies like Dark Elves and Tomb Kings (VC?) will be able to maintain potent magic phases in large games.

In small games, Bound spell items become more useful, as your single mage will sometimes be spoiled for dice, and have extras to throw at a bound spell. Playing a 500 point Demo I was glad my Empire Mage had the Burning Head bound spell, and I used it several times when I had the power dice. At large points values, I am guessing that Bound spell items will become nearly valueless, as your Mages greedily gobble up Power dice to cast powerful Buff or Damage spells.

Playing at 2500 or 3000 points will give a better idea of the effect of magic in Warhammer’s long-term future. I am enthusiastic to play some 2500 point games so I can get a better feel for the Magic phase. I suspect that in Legendary Battles, with gamers spamming Specials and Rares, magic may have a small overall impact.

Gorbad Ironclaw
14-07-2010, 16:24
Or you could just agree to change the number of dice rolled for magic to suit the feel and the game size as you like. If you are playing very large games it will presumably be with friends anyway and so I would think it should be difficult to agree on changing the level of magic to whatever the group thought suitable.