Friday, June 5, 2015

Wrath of Kings

So as you have seen I am getting started in CMoN's latest game, Wrath of Kings. So what is it all about? Well on the surface it is a simple, quick paced game, that gains depth from the interactions between friendly and enemy models. It is an alternating activation setup so players take turns activating models. It is a single die roll (d10) mechanic meaning all effects are bound by a single action/attack/ability roll, with little or no rolling for the inactive player. I typically do not like those types of games, but honestly my experience with them is extremely limited.

The defense chart is the key to making this work. As you can see on the card above there is a chart showing symbols from 10 down to 1. That is the defense chart. When a model makes an attack, they roll a number of dice equal to their attack and compare the results to the targets defense chart to see the effect. For example on the model above, a roll of 6,7,8,9 has a lightning bolt and that is a strike. A 10 is skull which is an overpower which is kinda like a critical hit. Seems simple and straight forward, and BORING. However their is a hitch. Many models have abilities that interact with the chart and affect the die roll. Some of them modify the die roll up or down. Some of them change the symbols, ie. a strike(lightning bolt) is replaced with a skull. Those things combined with other abilities makes the single die roll more engaging.

The other thing I like about the game is the pace. I used to play AT-43 and one of the complaints I had for it was the fact that it could take longer to put your models out than it does to play the game. Well WoK is not quite that bad. The game feels fast though and I am sure I me and the group I game with get more comfortable with the rules it will play faster. When I talk about pace though  I am really talking about how the game feels. There does not seem to be any real downtime. Even when your opponent is taking his activation, you are working through your next move or watching your opponent for any interaction from your models. It keeps players engaged and gives the game a feeling of progress even when there may not be any.

The final thing I want to talk about is WoK's victory conditions or what they call Motivations. Each player has a starting morale. As things happen in the game (loss of models, leaders, ect) a player loses moral. The game ends when at least one player has zero or less than zero morale. The motivations are sort of like missions. They vary from faction to faction, and each player picks their own motivation. These motivations have additional ways to reduce your opponents morale and therefore speed up the game. In contrast to other games, ignoring motivations in favor of simply killing models can often be your downfall. The bonus morale loss gained from focusing on motivations can really swing a game from one player to the other.

So that is some of my thoughts on Wrath of Kings. I apologize if this all seems kinda vague but I really don't feel comfortable talking in depth as I am just learning the game. If you have question about something feel free to ask them and I will see if I can answer them.

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