Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Terrain in Warhammer

One of the common catch-cries when 8th Edition was released was that terrain was now meaningless. This was based on the premise that, unlike previous editions, you were no longer slowed when moving through terrain. Instead, certain troops now took dangerous terrain tests with typically a low (16%) chance of failure.

This actually worked well in my eyes. Small elite units like Chaos Knights, who had no right to get themselves caught running through difficult ground suffered while infantry were generally okay. There were other rules regarding Steadfast if caught in terrain but generally if you were on foot you were safe.

However people were correct this did make certain terrain pieces less effective in breaking up the battlefield.

Locally we quickly moved toward the use of Mysterious Terrain. All woods were mysterious rolling on the Mysterious Forests table on Pg 119. This meant that 5 out of 6 woods had an effect - which is what you'd expect in a land of Fantasy Battles! Similarly any rivers are Mysterious Rivers (Table on Pg 120).

For other terrain pieces (primarily Hills and Marsh) we have been using the Random Terrain Chart on Pg 142 to determine what effects the piece has. That means 50% of the hills have an additional characteristic and 100% of Marshland. Marshland in particular can be brutal for Monsters.

Buildings have been left largely alone as they already have important in-game consequences.

A Lone Skaven Slave Exits The Building

The effect of all this has been to mix up battlefields and consequently the games without at any stage overwhelming the scenario. This is great from a variety point of view and presents unique challenges to your army build. Suddenly you may find that the quickest way to your objective is not necessarily in a straight line, woods are not the safe haven you expected and your Monster really shouldn't have tried to go through that marsh to get the archers who were shooting him.

I really recommend using the terrain rules to add another layer of consideration to your games.

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