If you haven’t heard of Warmachine/Hordes (or collectively known as Warmahordes) by know you’ve been living under a gaming rock. It’s constantly being hailed as the “best” wargame to be played competitively and does boast a very rock-solid ruleset. While the game itself isn’t complicated the sheer number of combinations, tricks, and synergy is mind-boggling. Its true that the exact same list plays entirely different with the switch of your caster. Similarly, if a particular unit/caster/solo is giving you trouble swapping in/out one unit/solo/caster can change your list up enough to combat the problems. This is great both from a tactical point of view but also makes it a lot easier on the wallet. Combine all this with the mecenaries/minions available to nearly every faction and you’ve got a plethora of options for a relatively low cost (You can have a decent 35pt (standard size) army with maybe another spare warcaster and unit for under 250$ compared to the $500+ for a 40k army).
Another nice facet of the game is the size of armies. For a 35pt game you could have anywhere from 8-30 ish guys, meaning you can paint/build as much or as little as you see fit. A 8 model army is just as strong as a large 30 model one. There are quite a few models known as solos which are, just that, single models. However, they usually bring something to the army in terms of special abilities, special weapons, magic, etc. Similarly, while you can buy units, each trooper within that unit can perform on his/her own as long as they stay within the leaders command range. IE: some could charge while others could just get into better positions for next turn. And yes, you perform a units entire turn (move, shoot, combat, etc) before moving on to the next.
The last facet of the game that differs quite a bit from 40k is the inclusion of warcasters/warlocks and warjacks/beasts. The casters/locks are essentially the “HQ” of the army and perform everything from casting spells, to buffing units, to controlling their jacks/beasts. If your caster dies, regardless of the scenario, you lose. Indeed many lists are tailored around assassinating your caster. However, failed attempts usually result in your own destruction. The warjacks/beasts are giant machines/creatures with damage grids for things like arms, movement, body, spirit, etc etc depending on which system you are using (warmachine/hordes). They can operate on their own, moving around and attacking but can really dish out the pain when being controlled by a warlock. Able to dish out and take extreme amounts of damage, most armies bring at least one if not a whole army of them.
If I had one complaint about the game it would be that the model range is still largely metal. This can be a pain for pinning and painting, especially the larger stuff. If the range was in plastic (and I’m not sure why it isn’t given its popularity) it would be a no-brainer to pick up.
There you have it, my brief introduction to the game warmahordes. Subscribe to get notified of future WM articles!
Currently I have a trollkins army but true to my style of army hopping until I find something that suits me I’m eyeing up Circle. I do have a couple of models for sale so if interested send me a message.