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    Post SEASON OF WAR: Week 1 Scenario Rules & Tactics

    Hi all, deliberately making a short & sweet post to share important information to those of you who may wish to participate.

    Season of War is Games Workshop's 2016 summer store campaign event for Age of Sigmar. I'm going to break down the information, understanding different stores may slightly deviate from the established framework. I am writing FROM MEMORY as I'm not sure if we can post the scenario's rules online. We were briefed by our great FLGS. I'm 90% sure all of the below is correct as we debated details for a long time. If there are indeed any mistakes, I really do apologise, but I truly believe I remember the major issues here.


    --- 1ST SCENARIO RULES & VICTORY CONDITIONS (THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT SECTION) ---


    We played a 1-page Scenario that, AFAIK, is standard. It is a variation of Be-In-Your-Opponent's-Backfield.

    The victory condition is to have more of your units (as measured by their Warscrolls, so an individual Hero figure counts as 1 unit, but so would a single unit of 30 models) on your opponent's side of the table than your opponent has units on your side of the table to win. The Scenario is designed to last 5 turns. But there IS a tricky bit, please take note.

    The tricky bit is you MUST have 3 units of AT LEAST 10 models each, that that will become "Frontline" units here.

    Repeating for effect, please remember to include 3 x 10+ models in your list. This caveat nearly disqualified me.

    (This is tricky because the new General Handbook generally requires you only take 2 "Battleline" compulsory troop-types.)

    Then there is a fancy deployment used just for this Scenario, which I will try to describe with this text diagram, on a 4-foot table:


    | Opponent's Table Edge to 12": Opponent's Backfield, where he deploys his regular units, where your units have to reach by Turn 5
    | 12" to 24": Your Opponent's Frontline, where he places his 3 x 10+ models each "Frontline" units
    | 24" to 36": Your Frontline, where you place your 3 x 10+ models each "Frontline units
    | 36" to Your Table Edge: Your Backfield, where you deploy your regular units, where your opponent has to reach by Turn 5


    Special Rules for those "Frontline" units - if they get wiped out, that unit could be redeployed 6" away from your own table edge during your next Hero Phase, AS LONG AS it's 9" away from your opponent's units. That condition will matter IMHO.


    --- OUR LOCAL FLGS GUIDELINES ---


    Our FLGS is very supportive of GW, with very enthusiastic and knowledgeable staff, who were 200% helpful here.

    They set games at 1000 points using the new General's Handbook. We played Rules As Written, with GW's official FAQ, no house rules. Battalions were allowed. We also followed the Command Trait and Artefact system in the new General's Handbook. While I'm betting that will be different everywhere, I think most Warhammer shops and FLGS will be trying to promote the General's Handbook, so perhaps your GW store or FLGS will do the same, if only because it's a standard people can MOSTLY agree on.


    --- STRATEGIC CONSIDERATIONS FOR THIS 1ST SCENARIO & AOS RULES IN GENERAL ---


    The previous points are unbiased observations, as objective as I can be. The following are mere opinions, but I hope they help, so you don't go in BLIND like I did.


    ---


    AoS is NOT WHFB or 40k, so pls be sure you know YOUR meta's rules - I'm not bashing AoS, and I'm not defending it either. All I'm saying is, AoS is its own beast and may often get house rules in the 1,000 locations. Rules As Written allows units with missile attacks to shoot into AND OUT OF close combat, at different units; to many WHFB or 40k players, that might be counter-intuitive. Rules As Written also allows units to just effectively walk away from a melee; if your unit is a Flyer, you can actually Fly over engaged opponents during your own Movement phase. Just be aware of what your location wants to use, it's no biggie unless you DON'T know it.

    Example - we used to play with the unofficial Errata that was supposedly designed by a Warhammer Store staffer (rather than GW's actual game design studio) and forgot that you could "retreat" from close combat. Because Season of War's 1st Scenario involved breaking through to the opponent's table edge, my opponent literally just had his Daemon Prince fly over units I had thrown in his way. Then I literally did the same thing against him with 2 Vampires. That changed the outcome of the game.

    Recommendation - obviously, re-familiarise yourself with the 4-page AoS rules, THEN also just check out the official FAQ I'm linking here for your convenience: https://www.games-workshop.com/resou...s_rules_en.pdf


    ---


    Fast, Flying, Shooty units seem to have a distinct advantage - this 1st Scenario isn't "holding the line", it's "breaking through". Maneuverability and Threat Range are key elements. In our case, it was Flyers that can move at least 6" that had a huge advantage, and their closest hard counter were shooty units, because a few of them can focus fire and wipe them out. It turns out survivability isn't as important here as speed and the ability to concentrate attacks. A moving, kiting shooter or the like are really, really annoying. I imagine spamming a lot of flying units so that you have got a bunch of bats or a horde of Archers just constantly thinning out your opponents would be very effective.

    Example - we basically tied our game today, with me having lots of flying Death units (Vampires, Morghasts) as well as my opponent (Daemon Prince), but he also did very well with his simple Pink Horrors because they can fire off spells, then shoot (it turns out he shouldn't have been able to do this with the new Rule of One regarding magic, but it was just an oversight on everyone's part, anything that has a similar effect is quite OP).

    Recommendation - check out your Warhammer Store's or FLGS's copy of the General's Handbook before you start. I found high Movement and Ranged attack units were NOT really that expensive. In fact, the Archers of every army seem to be a really good deal. I have NOT had time to study all the points cost yet, but I reckon they were weighed heavily in regards to things like damage and survivability instead. I play the Death faction, and I found 10 Wounds of slow Skeletons were about the same cost as 10 Wounds of fast flying Bats, and in my case I would have definitely have gone for Bats in this 1st Scenario.


    ---


    The General's Handbook not only gives points cost and a force organisation chart, but also free Faction Bonus, Command Traits and Artefacts to buff your Heroes - if you're like us, the 1st thing you did with the General's Handbook was look at the points values. It took me awhile to find the hidden gem at the end of the book. Each Faction has its own special rule, then you can CHOOSE extra Command Traits and Artefacts. AoS is quite Herohammer-y, Heroes are Force Multipliers, and these buffs are like Force Multipliers for your Force Multipliers. It's exponential. Then it turns out, they don't cost you any points, making them real must-haves.

    Example - Death faction suddenly got a FNP/Reanimation Protocol-like rule of 6+ save, on top of any saves they have, as long as those Undead units are within like 10" of my General. THEN, a Command Trait for my General buffs that to 5+. I had 2 units of Morghast Archai that had a standard save of 4+, then their own 5+ from their special Ebon-Wrought Armour, THEN another 5+ save from being within 10" of my General. They were the most successful units in my army as a result.

    Recommendation - don't overlook that Faction and Hero stuff! You pay no points for it, but because it's near the end of the book, I thought it was just an Appendix thing! I treated it as an afterthought, but honestly, if I were to do things over again, I'd have started with these Command Traits and Artefacts with my Hero design first, THEN design an army around that.


    ---


    Your Heroes/General are gonna get sniped - and after all that hype about Herohammering, the sad reality is Heroes are like people walking around with big crosshairs on their chest. Rules As Written do NOT allow Heroes to hide inside units, there is no lookout sir, and the official AoS FAQ even specifies an example of Orcs standing behind Goblins don't get even a cover save bonus. With all these buffs that Heroes not only get, but give to other units, they're the priority targets. I reckon you're best served by having a really tough Hero/General that takes too much effort to take down or some sort of trick that dissuades your opponent from even bothering with him.

    Example - my opponent had a Daemon Prince. I just tried to avoid him or throw units in his way, because I remember how much dedicated firepower I needed to take him down from previous games. In my case, I had a Vampire General, whom I gave a Ring of Immortality that allows her to come back from death once per game and respawn 12" away. My opponent saw her and realised killing her allowed her to move into his endzone faster, so he ignored her in favour of other targets.

    Recommendation - choose Heroes/a General in particular that just doesn't seem worth trying to kill. Maybe he moves too fast away, maybe he doesn't do much damage but soaks a lot. Put yourself in your opponent's place and see if your army has an obvious "He Must Die" vibe. Seriously, I noticed in both my case and my opponents, we prioritised other objectives instead.


    And last, but also MOST importantly so I can wrap this up with a climax...


    ---


    The "Frontline" 3 x 10+ troops are really the backbone of your army for this 1st Scenario - the special rule allows them to constantly respawn if they're wiped out. This is an important consideration, even though I managed to pull a razor-thin win. I used them as sacrificial units I threw at my opponent's units constantly, just so he had more to think about, they were a distraction. But I imagine if I had used a bunch of Archers instead, I could focus fire and really take out my opponent's heavy hitters and every time he wiped out an unit, it'd come back. With the conditions for them to respawn, where they have to be within 6" of your table edge and 9" from any opponent, it is POSSIBLE to "lock" them out with opposing units spawn-camping in the endzone. Really consider what you could use here, I just wish I even KNEW about this before my game.

    Example - near the end of our game, my opponent realised without unit cohesion rules, he could have spread his unit across my endzone to prevent my units returning to harass him. My units kept getting wiped out, so that could have been a game changer. That was because I entered the store not knowing about this 3 x 10+ models criteria, was re-writing my list to compensate, didn't know this in advance.

    Recommendation - plan for this 3 x 10+ troops unit please. I really write this in the hopes of helping you. This completely blindsided me and I bet for a lot of other players. A lot of AoS boxes come with just 5 models. I'm thinking a lot of players came in trying to be prepared, thinking they did good with their 2 boxes of 5 Stormcast Celestials each, then realised they need 30 of them. It's just this one scenario, the 1st Season of War Scenario, and I had no plan, no strategy. Neither did my opponent. How different the game would be had we only known, had the website for the event https://seasonofwar.games-workshop.com/ just mentioned it.


    ---


    Quick note to say thanks for reading.

    A lot was invested for this event, I think it's supposed to promote this huge fix/update/patch to AoS with the General's Handbook. I assume there will be more scenarios and I anticipate people won't even have time to acclimate to this 1st Scenario.

    The reason is, despite the fancy Season of War website, it actually doesn't even explain the rules for the scenarios. Understanding this is the 1st weekend and people are just starting, I tried to post ASAP. Please share with your friends, email or WhatsApp them or something. GW is throwing so much miscellaneous stuff at us at once, we don't even know how to organise all this data. That's all I tried to do here, to organise a framework, point out these key areas you shouldn't miss. To recap:

    - realise you should have this 3 x 10 unit thing
    - check out the rules just so that you know how you'll be playing, even if it's different than RAW
    - check out the General's Handbook for those free Command Traits and Artefacts...because your opponent surely will

    May you win a bigger share of the pie for your Faction.
    Last edited by Kommissar Waaaghrick; 07-17-2016 at 08:13 AM.

 

 

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