Wednesday, June 03, 2009

BIG news from Reaper Minis

As you may recall a LONG time ago (or so it seems) I posted here that I was going to ReaperCon out in Denton, TX for a weekend of mini painting, gaming and being around lots of cool like-minded people. As it turns out, I had a great time, did some old-school RPGing, a bit of Pathfinder, got to watch some 4e being played, took tons of pictures, and talked quite a bit about Reaper's own tabletop fantasy game called Warlord...which brings me to good news.

Warlord has been revised and is slated for release later this summer. This isn't yet another pile of errata or repack of the same old game, but a complete new set of new that it is being called Warlord 2nd Edition (no 1.5 here, my friends). There's a brand-new cover art so you'll know it's the new edition, and below that is a snippet from the official Reaper web site's news.

  • Uses the same RAGE combat system as previous versions of the game.
  • Completely re-invented magic system that allows spellcasters to choose their spells during the game.
  • We got rid of all the little rules that either didn't get used, or were unnecessarily complex.
  • Reduced number of damage tracks for faster play.
  • Includes the 10 core factions that the first edition rulebook featured.
  • Remaining factions, as well as 5 brand new ones, will be featured in a follow-up book later this year.
(end quote)

Warlord in its beginnings was meant to be a quick skirmish game with simplified d10 combat, simple easy-to-learn rules, and each game model (made by Reaper of course) would come with its own data card with all the vital statistics needed for game play. And it was great fun, but as things often seem to go, it needed some "fixing" in order to make the game more fair as well as to add in more new models and factions and subfactions and new rules and new-improved data cards and ..... you get the picture. During the past three years or so, the game underwent so many changes that many players, myself included, lost interest and moved on to other things. And believe me, moving on was not easy. I loved that game. My husband and I along with many from our gaming group were part of the original beta play-test group and up until the first major revamp we played almost every Sunday. Then, when the first major revamp came along, we playtested that also, but in the end most of us agreed that too much of the game's selling points had been lost. It seems others felt the same way too, and eventually enough voices let themselves be heard that the game developers decided to take a second look at what made the game so popular in its original form, fixed what needed fixing, tossed out what didn't work, and gave us what we wanted.

To quote my mother, "dance with the one that brought you"

Right now, Warlord 2 is in the very last stages of open beta testing. The book and faction data are both being checked and double-checked to be sure that this WILL be the LAST new edition you'll be seeing for a long time. I'm very pleased with what I've seen and although I had no real hand in the development of WL2 aside from two years of grumbling about the state of the game I love, I am once again proud to recommend this game to anybody looking for some good tabletop skirmish fun.

The game itself is simple. You and your opponent(s) buy armies using points. You have some models that are leaders, others that are grunts who require leaders, some who are elites such as mages or heroes and some who are solos such as assassins or monsters. Rather than the old I-go-You-go, players activate one leader and troop or one solo at a time and player activation is determined randomly with chances based on total number of troops per player. Combat is done using d10s versus the opposed model's defense number, and offensive and defensive strikes take place simultaneously. The point-cost of all magic-users includes their spells, which are chosen from spell-lists as the game is being played. All you need to play is a few d10s, a measuring tape or small ruler, a dozen or two minis, the rule book, a 4X4 table, half an hour to an hour to kill, and a friend to play with.

The softcover rule book will be available July 27th. A hard-cover version shold be along not too long after. There will also likely be a PDF, but I'm not sure when that will be released.


In other not-so-happy news, the reason I have been so long overdue in updating is that on May 20th, the day after we got back from Texas, Steve's father passed away of an apparant stroke. He died as he might've wished his own home at his rocker chair with a book nearby. Since then, we've had much work to get done at his house and at ours, therefore not much time yet for gaming.

Steve's dad was very supportive of all of Steve's hobbies as well as mine. Paint-&-Play was one of our pursuits he particularly liked, saying that "Anything that gets kids and their parents to do things together is a good cause."


I promise there's more exciting updates to come. I'm working on a fun paint project right now and there's some interesting RPG news in the works. I'll have more on both as soon as I can. I also hope to be doing a review soon on Mythmere Games' new Swords & Wizardry monster manual, which just came available on Lulu this past week.


trollsmyth said...

Deepest condolences. My best wishes for his entire family.

Sham aka Dave said...

Sorry to hear the news, Spike. My sympathy goes out to you, Steve and your families. I read before where you shared that quote, and it's worth repeating, a good cause indeed.

yoyorobbo said...

So sorry for your loss. Words won't do it here, but please know that others feel for you, especially during this time.

On the Reaper Warlord tip, I *almost* bought the starter set (2 armies, books, etc) of the first version. Wshew! I guess I'll wait for the new one and check it out.

I haven't played any real heavy tabletop wargaming, and Warlord seemed to fit the bill of a simpler (and cheaper) one for me to get into and start dorking around with my son (5 y.o.).

Almost snagged the Classic Battletech box set (plastic minis), but I really prefer Fantasy vs Mechs.

For now my son and I play some D&D minis and just about to break out the Heroclix, etc (I have some put away that I never really played - saving them for him when he was old enough).

Back to Reaper: I love their minis, and have been diggin' their pre-painted plastics (LE) too. I wonder if they will be doing any pre-paints for the new Warlord game. I like to mess around with painting too, but to do armies of them, doesn't really get me goin', ya'know?

I've heard that a few companies may steer away from metal minis, due to rising costs. Rumors? Dunno.

Anyway, thanks for the tip! I'll look forward to this one, later this summer.

tabascojunkie said...

I look forward to the new version too. It should be fun, and I'm glad they're gonna give us a game and not change it all the time like they did for a couple of years.

We used to have a lot of fun playing Warlord back when.