Elves Vs Dark Dwarves Vs Me Vs Age of Sigmar

I couldn’t finish painting those Elves and not have a battle now could I?

Originally this little Fantasy project was going to use and abuse Tony Bath’s Ancients rules from Donald Featherstone’s War Games. However having far too much confidence in my own ability to write rules I decided I’d take this opportunity to ‘fix’ everything I didn’t like in Age of Sigmar.

Here’s a very rough draft of what I came up with.

DEPLOYMENT

You force is divided up into three sections: Vanguard, Main Force and Reserve. The Vanguard can be made up of up to 25% of the total points cost of your force, the Reserve is also up to 25% and the Main Force must be at least 50% of your total points cost.

The Vanguard is the only portion of your force that begins the game in play, and begins the game within 6” of your home board edge. Any units in your main force must move on from your home board edge on either turn 2 or 3. Any units in your reserve can move on from turn 4 onwards.

THE TURN

At the start of any turn both players roll off to determine who has the initiative. The winner of the roll off has the initiative and can activate one unit then their opponent can activate a unit. Then players continue activating units alternately until each unit in play has been activated once each. If a player has more units than their opponent then they can activate any remaining units consecutively once their opponent has finished activating all of their units. Once all units have activated any units that have taken casualties take morale tests. Then the turn is over and a new turn begins. The term ‘all units’ refers to all units in play or units either player would like to move into play in the current turn.

ACTIVATIONS

When a unit is activated it can perform two actions from the list below and it cannot perform the same action twice. If a unit cannot perform two actions then it will only perform one and then its activation is over.

Move – Explained Below.

Attack – Explained Below.

Focus – Explained Below.

Pass – Have the unit do nothing.

MOVE

Each figure can move up to its speed (SPD) value in inches, or it can dash adding an additional D6” to its move (roll once for the entire unit), a dashing unit cannot perform an attack action unless its dash move allows it to move into base to base contact with an enemy unit. Also a dash move cannot be performed if the unit has already performed a combat action in its current activation.

Each figure in the unit must be in coherency with its unit leader, this means that after moving the unit each figure in the unit must be within 4” of the unit leader. If a figure is not then it is removed from play.

If a unit is in base to base contact with an enemy unit they can move away from them, however they cannot then move into contact with a different enemy unit in the same activation.

ATTACK

  • When a unit attacks first total the number of dice they will roll when they attack. This total is the number of figures in range of the enemy unit multiplied by the ATT (attacks) value of the attacking unit. You can combine the attacks of two separate units against a single enemy unit, or split a unit’s attacks against different enemy units, or combine the split parts of separate units against a single enemy unit.

Example – A unit of 10 Dwarfs and a unit 3 Trolls is attacking a unit of Elves. 8 of the 10 Dwarfs are in base to base contact with the Elf unit. The Dwarfs have an ATT of 2 and so roll 16 dice. The Trolls have an ATT of 4 and have two in contact and so roll 8 dice. All 24 dice are rolled together.

  • Each 4, 5 or 6 rolled in the attack counts as a successful hit. If the target unit is completely in cover and you are making a ranged attack against them each 5 or 6 hits. If the target unit is completely within a fortification and you are making a ranged attack against them each 6 counts as a hit. In any case each 6 rolled allows you to roll an additional attack die. A ranged attack is any attack that is further than 1″.

Example – Of the 24 previous dice 11 are hits (rolls of 4, 5 or 6). 4 of those hits are 6s and so 4 additional dice are rolled. Two of those additional dice are hits and one is a 6 so a further additional die is rolled, it is a 4 so another hit is scored. 14 hits in total are scored.

  • Reduce the PRT (protection) of the enemy unit by the CLV (cleave) value of your attacking unit, and then divide the total the number of successful hits by that value. The enemy unit’s PRT can be reduced to a minimum of 1 regardless of the CLV of your unit. If units with different cleave values are combining attacks use the lowest cleave value out of the units. The final result is the number of damaging hits. A partial hit also counts as a hit, for example if you do 3.5 hits you actually score 4 hits.

Example – The Elf unit has a PRT of 3, the Dwarfs have a CLV of 1 and the Trolls a CLV of 3. Since the Dwarfs have the lowest cleave value theirs is used. The Elf unit’s PRT is reduced to 2 and the 14 hits are divided by that, leaving a total of 7 damaging hits.

  • You opponent then rolls a die for each damaging hit against the VIT (vitality) of their unit. Each die that scores equal to or above their vitality is stopped. Each die that scores below their vitality causes a wound on the unit. Most units have a WN (wounds) characteristic of 1 and so for each wound a model is removed. Some units have multiple wounds and in this case a single figure receives all the wounds until they are removed before moving on to other figures.

Example – 7 dice are rolled for the damaging hits on the Elf unit. Their VIT is 4+and they have 1 wound each. Three of the dice score lower than 4 so three Elves are slain.

FOCUS

If a unit performs the focus action before attacking in the same activation then when they attack you can either increase the ATT on the units profile by 1 or increase their CLV by 1. Once the attack is resolved their ATT or CLV returns to normal.

MORALE TESTS

If a unit has lost any figures this turn it must take a morale test at the end of the turn. To see if any other figures in the unit break and flee roll an attack against the unit where the number of dice used is equal to the number of figures the unit has lost in the preceding turn, the CLV of the attack is 0 and their PRT counts as 2.

I’m currently thinking about rules for wizards and magic.

Here are the army lists I was using, there’s currently no restrictions on what you can take, or allying forces.

DARK DWARVES
UNIT SPD RNG ATT CLV PRT VIT WN Rules PTS
Halberdiers 2” 2 1 3 4+ 1   21
Crossbows 2” 12” 1 1 2 4+ 1   25
Cavalry 5” 3 1 3 4+ 2   33
ELVES
UNIT SPD RNG ATT CLV PRT VIT WN Rules PTS
Archers 3” 12” 1 0 2 5+ 1   23
Spears 3” 1” 1 0 2 4+ 1   16
Swords and Shields 3” 1 0 2 4+ 1   15
Two handed weapons 3” 2 2 2 4+ 1   23
Ballista 1” 24” 8 2 2 4+ 3 Heavy Weapon 71
Cavalry 6” 12” 2 1 3 4+ 2   45
Great Hawks 8” 2 1 2 3+ 1 Flying 35
Huros 8” 5 2 4 3+ 8 Flying, Inspiring 80
MOUNTAIN FOLK
UNIT SPD RNG ATT CLV PRT VIT WN Rules PTS
Ogres 2” 0 3 1 3 5+ 2   23
Trolls 2” 0 4 2 4 5+ 4   39
Stone Golem 3” 0 6 2 4 4+ 10 Sweep 77
Mountain Wolves 6” 0 4 0 2 5+ 1   23

SPECIAL RULES

Flying

When this unit moves it can ignore terrain and other models, provided there is space for it when it has finished its move and models can be placed standing upright.

Sweep

When this unit attacks it gains 1 additional attack for each enemy model in base to base contact.

Heavy Weapon

When this model causes wounds to an enemy the number of wounds caused is doubled.

Inspiring

Friendly units that are within 6” of a figure with this special rule automatically pass morale tests.

The battle I played out was a lot of fun and everything seemed to behave how it should and the rules didn’t get in the way of the action at all which I liked. Part of the fun was the minimal stats in regards to combat. In Age of Sigmar for example you need to total up your dice to hit, roll to hit, roll to wound, your opponent makes saves modified by your unit’s rend, and then you multiply failed saves by your damage and remove wounds, not to mention all the modifiers to all the rolls based on whether you’re stood in range of certain characters or not. It can be rather clunky at times to say the least. I remember an exchange between some of my Chaos Marauders and some Orcs which took forever to calculate and in the end they didn’t kill anyone anyway. In my rules you total your units attacks and roll to hit which is always on a 4+, divide your hits by the enemy unit’s protection (once reduced by your unit’s cleave), and then they make saves.

In the end the Elves won and as such had their Cavalry unit painted. To the victors go the spoils after all. This has been a nice distraction from my other more serious hobby projects and it may well continue.

All the minis are from Irregular Miniatures by the way.

5 thoughts on “Elves Vs Dark Dwarves Vs Me Vs Age of Sigmar

  1. I love the rules, especially the option to focus. We could all do with that! What about dropping the vitality element (AKA saving throw)…since protection is dealt with separately, I’m not sure what vitality represents, in any case. Just asking!

  2. Vitality is natural resistance to death I guess lol. I added it after the fact because people were dying too quickly especially with the focus option to increase your units cleave by 1. It also adds some more character to units and increases the tactical decisions you have to make, certain units are better at killing units with a good vitality save rather than taking on hordes of weak infantry. I’m writing rules for an undead army at the mo, that is protection 2 across the board, but with a 3+ vitality save. You can chop them to pieces and they’ll keep coming at you. Whereas enchanted weapons (rules also in the works) ignore the vitality save making them great against the undead. Thanks for the question!

  3. I should also mention you could just drop vitality and increase the number of wounds each model has, but that would require more counters on the table and that’s just something I personally don’t like.

  4. I like the idea that the victors’ reward is to be painted. I paint losers to encourage them to do better next time 🙂

    Regards, Chris.

  5. Ah, I see. It’s all deeper than I thought at first. Keep up the good (or evil) work!

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