Lead the Charge
Preview the Armies in BattleLore Second Edition
"The Uthuk Y'llan have returned, and it falls to us to break them. The day we all feared has come. But put aside your fear now; this is not the place for it. Terrinoth is the land of steel. There is steel in your hands and steel in your hearts! We will not break before the Uthuk. We will cut them deep, and if our fate is to end in blood, it will be theirs as much as ours!" – Sir Patric, Castellan of Nordgard Castle
The tramp of armies echoes across the lands of Terrinoth, and BattleLore Second Edition will soon be on sale at your local retailer. In this game of tactical prowess, you vie for the upper hand, collecting victory points both by securing vital objectives and by dominating your opponent on the field of battle. Through clever utilization of the battlefield and the power of lore one player will triumph in the end.
In past previews, we’ve examined the tactics of movement and combat as you command your units in BattleLore. We’ve also taken a closer look at the power of lore and the difficult choices you make when choosing scenario cards and mustering an army. These decisions are critical if you wish to lead your army to victory, but even the greatest general can be defeated if he fails to know the capabilities of his troops.
In BattleLore Second Edition, you can choose between the military intelligence and strategy of the Daqan Lords or the ferocity of the savage Uthuk Y’llan. These two armies play very differently, and the differences between units allow you to create your own play styles. In this preview, we’ll look at each unit and explore its ability to bring you closer to victory!
Harbingers of Doom
The Uthuk Y’llan army in BattleLore Second Edition is composed of five units – Blood Harvesters, Viper Legions, Flesh Ripper Brutes, Obscenes, and a Chaos Lord. The Uthuk Y’llan are a race of demon-worshipping barbarians, dwelling on the outskirts of Terrinoth, but in BattleLore, you’ll have the chance to lead them into battle alongside the demons they revere.
The backbone of most Uthuk Y’llan armies is Blood Harvesters and Viper Legions. These units are cheap to muster, meaning that you can quickly build your army’s mass without spending too many of your mustering points. Blood Harvesters are an ideal unit for cutting through enemies, because of their Rage and Frenzy abilities. Rage allows the Blood Harvesters to roll one additional combat die for each figure missing from their unit. Frenzy allows the Blood Harvesters to commit a ‘heroic’ result to deal one damage and remove a figure from their own unit. When these abilities are combined, the Blood Harvesters quickly become a vicious fighting force.
A Viper Legion unit, on the other hand, excels at softening up enemy defense before sending in your Blood Harvesters to finish the job. Viper Legions use ranged attacks to incapacitate enemy troops, and they also have the ability to poison enemy units. Poisoned units take damage more easily, meaning that your Blood Harvesters will be able to slice their way through enemy lines even quicker than before.
Though these infantry may form the bulk of the army, other units are vital to the Uthuk Y’llan forces as well. Although Blood Harvesters are capable warriors, it can prove difficult for them to break a disciplined line of the Daqan Lords’ trained soldiers. Fortunately, no unit is better at disrupting enemy forces than a Chaos Lord or the Obscene. Obscene are fairly slow moving, but they can put on a burst of speed when they first clash with enemy forces. Once engaged in combat, an Obscene unit won’t break off the attack without doing damage. Most units in BattleLore cannot counterattack if they are forced to retreat, but the Obscene have the ability to counter before retreating, causing maximum damage to enemy units and helping to break enemy lines.
If even Obscenes can’t destroy the enemy, you may require the assistance of a Chaos Lord. This monstrous unit looms over the battlefield, spreading terror and dismay wherever it treads. Although the Chaos Lord is slow-moving, it can cause massive amounts of damage, including forcing enemy units to flee when it triggers its Terrify ability. Although this massive unit cannot fit into hexes with a building, it can certainly open a breach for other Uthuk Y’llan units to rush through.
Once enemy lines have been broken, the Flesh Ripper Brutes excel at rushing in to pick off the weak. Flesh Ripper Brutes are drawn to the scent of blood, and once a unit has been damaged, they are relentless in pursuit. After an enemy unit has been destroyed or forced to retreat, the Flesh Rippers’ Pursue ability allows them to move even further and make another attack, helping you keep the enemy from reforming their troop formations.
Wall of Steel
When the Uthuk Y’llan invasion enters Terrinoth, the Daqan Lords’ maneuverability and unshakeable discipline will certainly present a massive challenge for the barbarians. Like the Uthuk Y’llan, the largest portion of the Daqan Lords’ army is made up of infantry – Citadel Guard and Yeoman Archers. The Citadel Guard is composed of some of the finest infantry in Terrinoth, and their superior tactics and training give them an edge in combat. When the Citadel Guard battles, they have the option to commit a ‘strike’ result to cause a retreat instead of causing damage. By sacrificing damage to force a retreat, you can easily force an opponent away from important locations, keeping choke points and victory-point-providing banners firmly under your control.
The Citadel Guard defend the most important parts of the battlefield, and Yeoman Archers are perfectly suited to support the Citadel Guard’s actions. Yeoman Archers have the opportunity to make two ranged attacks in one round if they do not move, so by setting up a defensive formation with the Citadel Guard, the Yeoman Archers can whittle away at enemy troops from a position of safety, picking off your opponent’s units from behind a wall of steel.
As you defend your position with the Citadel Guard and Yeoman Archers, units like Riverwatch Riders or a Roc Warrior provide you with the maneuverability you need to harry your enemies and destroy them one piece at a time. Riverwatch Riders possess the highest movement value in the game, ensuring that they can dart around your opponent’s flanks, engaging in deadly hit-and-run tactics. Enemy units cannot counter the Riverwatch Riders’ attacks, and their Flanking ability gives friendly units a bonus combat die when they attack an enemy adjacent to the Riverwatch Riders. With agile cavalry like these swarming around your defensive formations, you can keep the enemy perpetually off-balance as you attack and escape again.
The Roc Warrior performs similarly to Riverwatch Riders in battle, but is even more powerful and effective at destroying your opponent’s battle plan. This flying creature swoops over the forests, hills, and rivers of the battlefield with ease, attacking suddenly from on high. Because of its Flying ability, melee units roll fewer combat dice against the Roc Warrior. This unit also has the ability to move up to two hexes after attacking, meaning that after a devastating attack it can soar to a higher altitude, safely out of the reach and ready for another crippling attack.
While the Daqan Lords’ mobile units dart around the solid Citadel Guard, sometimes, the greatest threat is an equally maneuverable enemy unit. The Daqan Lords have an answer for those units as well: magically animated Rune Golems. Rune Golems were created in the ancient past, and are only activated in times of gravest danger. In a pitched battle, these Rune Golems can prove invaluable. Rune Golems ignore one retreat inflicted during combat, and they also have the potential to Stun an enemy unit. Stunned units cannot move, attack, counter, or retreat, making them easy pickings for the faster units in your army as you keep enemy units pinned against your powerful defenders. By stunning your opponent’s most powerful units, you leave them open to your own attacks and prepare your own path to victory.
Command from the Front
No matter which army you choose to lead into battle, only your keen tactical mind and your knowledge of your troops will lead you to victory in a game of BattleLore. The land of Terrinoth will soon resound to the song of battle as the Daqan Lords clash with the Uthuk Y’llan. Pre-order BattleLore Second Edition at your local retailer today!