|Let There Be War!
Preview the Fast-Paced Battles of Warhammer: Diskwars
|Warhammer: Diskwars | Published 11 October 2013|
“All the manifold events of a long and bloody history have led to this crucial point. The races of the world stand upon the brink.”
–Warhammer, “An Age of War”
In August, we announced the upcoming release of Warhammer: Diskwars. This ferocious, fast-paced tabletop wargame allows two to four players to contest tumultuous battles with some of the Old World’s mightiest heroes and most iconic units.
These heroes and units are represented by the game’s distinctive, two-sided disks, and as you wage your battles, you and your foes flip disks end-over-end to maneuver them across the battlefield. Early skirmishes are full of feints, retreats, and sudden charges. Then, at the end of the round, if any two enemy disks overlap each other, they must fight!
Today, we’ll take a closer look at the action, diving into the heart of the game’s conflict with a look at troop movement, pinning, and combat!
You Are the Commander
In Warhammer: Diskwars, you are the commander of your army, and as the tides of battle shift, you must respond swiftly and decisively.
Each standard game round begins with the Activation Phase, in which you gain the opportunity to outwit your rival. Each player comes to battle with a hand of command cards. The number of command cards a player may bring to the table is limited by his choice of heroes and by game restrictions that decree no player may choose more than one copy of a single command card by title. Most important, though, is the fact that these command cards each feature a number in the upper left corner that indicates the number of units you can activate, as well as a strategy halfway down the left of the card. Your strategy determines the order in which you and you foe will move your forces.
As indicated by the diagram above, players resolve bold cards before steady cards, steady cards before devious cards, and devious cards before bold cards. Slow cards are resolved last.
In addition to determining when and how many units you’ll activate, many command cards also offer unique benefits. For example, Arcane Attack deals a random amount of magical damage to a disk within medium range of your caster, while Push allows you to empower a disk, making it more powerful for the duration of the round.
Once your disk has taken its action, you place an activation token on it, marking that it has activated in the current round. You cannot activate disks that have activation tokens on them, nor disks that are pinned by other disks.
After all players finish activating the number of units indicated by their command cards, they select new command cards, determine a new resolution order, and activate more units. This process repeats until no player has any units left to activate.
Seize the Battlefield
As mentioned earlier, players in Warhammer: Diskwars maneuver their units across the battlefield by flipping them end over end any number of times up to their movement values.
You don’t need a tape measure to plot your course across the battlefield. Instead, you can get a sense of each unit’s possible range at a glance, and because each disk can pivot on any edge between flips, you have tremendous freedom to position your units where you wish.
In turn, learning how to position your units during the Activation Phase is a crucial part of your push toward victory. As in any battle, you’ll also need to be able to anticipate your enemy’s movement.
Because units must stop their movement when they overlap opposing units, skilled players will quickly learn how to corral their foes. They’ll learn to measure their foes’ potential advances, and they’ll combine ranged skirmishes with clever feints that set up heavy-hitting melee units like Boar Boyz for high impact charges.
The swift and versatile Wolf Riders can dart past the Marienburg Swordsmen to pounce on the Empire’s Steam Tank before it fires, or they can ride toward Volkmar the Grim and fire at him with ranged attacks in an attempt to lure him out toward the Boar Boyz that are just a little too far away to charge him.
If you can learn how to accurately survey the changing battlefield, you’ll be able to gain the upper hand as you rush into the game’s ferocious combats!
Batter Your Foe
After players finish activating all their units, they enter the Melee Phase. Here, players resolve the combats that breaks out between all disks that directly overlap each other.
Because units normally can deal melee damage to only one other disk, most combats involve just two disks. The disk on top is the attacker while disk pinned beneath it is the defender. During combat, the attacker strikes with its attack strength, and the defender strikes back with its counter strength. Disks attack and defend simultaneously.
An Orc Boyz disk pins a Marienburg Swordsmen disk. When players resolve this engagement, the Orc Boyz deals five damage to the Swordsmen and the Swordsmen deals three damage to the Orc Boyz.
When a disk takes damage, its owner places a number damage tokens on it equal to the amount of damage it suffered. If a disk ever has damage on it equal to or exceeding its toughness, it takes a wound and is immediately removed from the battlefield unless it’s a hero or another unit with a stamina value. In that case, it takes a wound token. If a disk with stamina has a number of wound tokens greater than its stamina value, it is destroyed.
Even though most combats involve just two disks, some units may end up engaged with multiple attackers or defenders. Perhaps you’ll maneuver Archaon the Everchosen to pin two Riekland Crossbowmen.
Your opponent may swarm your Bolt Thrower with a host of Kurgan Marauders.
Even in the largest engagements, each unit only deals melee damage to one enemy, and players assign their damage starting with the attacking disks. However, as in most games, specific abilities may alter the standard rules, and units like the Bloodthirster that have the Frenzy keyword are able to attack all units they pin.
Fast and Furious
The combats of Warhammer: Diskwars are fast and furious. Units will fall in battle, and the battlefield will flow with blood. You and your friends will move quickly through each Activation and Melee Phase, and the game will change with every round as units are pinned, vanquish their foes, and are freed from their engagements.
Movement and combat are the heart of the game. They’re easy to learn, but tough to master, and the more you explore them, the more you’ll find tremendous depth in the game’s fast-paced battles!
We’ll explore more of the game’s depth in our next preview, in which we take a look at ranged combat and a number of different keywords and unique disk abilities!
Warhammer: Diskwars is an epic game of heroes, armies, and brutal warfare for 2 - 4 players. At the game's heart art its disks, which represent heroes and units from the Old World. These maneuver across the battlefield by flipping end over end, and if any two disks overlap at the end of the round, they must fight!