19 November 2008

The War Rages On

An Intro To Tannhauser

TANNHÄUSER is a world a step removed from our own, a u-chronic timeline where things happened just slightly differently … but over time, a small change can have a large effect. In the world of TANNHÄUSER, the Great War (the war we know as World War I) never ended. Neither the forces of the Kaiser’s Reich nor the brave soldiers of the Union have been able to achieve the supremacy necessary to secure victory. Now it is 1949, and both sides search desperately for a weapon to use against their foes and tip the scales of war in their favor. The fruits of recent advances in science and technology are rushed into service without adequate testing. In long-forgotten ruins of dead civilizations, men dig for the secrets that killed them. Beyond the reach of men, ancient horrors wait to be invoked.Tannhäuser is a tactical board game of paranormal investigations and Great War combat, pitting the forces of the Reich and the Army of the Union together in a struggle for control of the Obscura Cardinal Cornerstones, magical artifacts of immense power.


PLAYERS2-10 players command two teams of five characters, both Heroes and Troops. Since there are up to ten characters on the battlefield at any given time, up to ten players can take part!GAMEPLAYThe Obscura Korps and the men and women of Operation: Tannhäuser battle for supremacy in each game of Tannhäuser. According to the Game Mode selected by the players, the carefully-selected and equipped members of each team will strive to accomplish various objectives on the game map, guided by the ubiquitous Pathfinding system. PATHFINDINGTannhäuser uses an innovative new system for tracking movement and line of sight called Pathfinding. Each area on the game board is represented by a circle, and each circle possesses one or more colors which will indicate which Path (or Paths) the circle is on. Circles that share colors and are on the same Path have line of sight to one another. For example, all of these grey circles are on the same Path. The circles near the doorway are both grey and red - they are on both the grey and red Paths, and can see and be seen by all the circles on those Paths. Put another way, a character standing by the doorway can see both down the hall (red Path) and into the room (grey Path). In this example, Tala, standing on a circle that is both red and grey, can see both the Schocktruppen (on the red Path) and Eva (on the grey Path). The Schocktruppen can see only Tala, not Eva; Eva can see only Tala, not the Shocktruppen. John Mac Neal, who is around the corner on an entirely different Path, can neither see nor be seen by any of the other characters. As you can see, the Pathfinding system makes it easy to calculate line of sight, range, and the other details of science-fiction horror combat! HEROES AND TROOPSEach team is comprised of a mixture of five Heroes and Troops, characters with unique and varied abilities, statistics, and equipment options. Players have the ability to select which pieces of equipment, special skills, and commendations to award each character when they select their team for a given battle, so each individual character may play dramatically differently each time it is brought to the field. Heroes and Troops function identically in most respects. The most notable exception is that fallen Troops can be replaced by reinforcements, depending on the Game Mode selected by you and your opponent. When a Hero falls, that Hero's story is over. ACTIONSPlayers will take it in turn to activate a character on their team, alternating until all characters have gone. On its activation, each character can move a number of circles equal to its speed and also take a single Action Phase, during which time the character can perform various actions such as picking up dropped equipment, searching a crate, completing a nearby objective, or, of course, attacking an enemy. To resolve most actions, such as attacks, characters will roll ten-sided dice (d10s) equal to their corresponding value in the appropriate characteristic. Each die that rolls equal to or greater than a given difficulty value is a success; each die that fails to do so is a failure and is ignored. In contests, the defender will also roll his own die pool - whichever character scores the most successes is the winner of the contest. In the case of an attack roll, the attacker rolls dice equal to his Combat value with a difficulty score equal to the Combat value of his target. The defender, meanwhile, makes a Shock roll by throwing dice equal to his Stamina value, with a difficulty score equal to the attacker's Combat value. Each success scored on the Shock roll eliminates one success scored on the Combat roll. The defender would suffer one wound for each success remaining.


GAME MODES AND VICTORYThe requirements for winning each game are based on the Game Mode selected. For example, Death Match Mode awards victory to the last team with any characters still standing. Story Mode, on the other hand, places various objectives that must be completed on the game map. The first team to complete both their Main Objectives, or one Main Objective and two Secondary Objectives, is the winner of that match. With a variety of options for customizing each team (and options that will grow only wider with the addition of new expansions in the Tannhäuser line), four Game Modes, and endless possibilities, Tannhäuser is a compulsively replayable game experience. 

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