Runewars Versus: Carnage and Decay
The First Entry in a Matchup Series for Runewars Miniatures Game
Four powerful factions engage in massive, ground-shaking battles for control of Terrinoth in Runewars Miniatures Game, the tactical miniatures game of rank-and-file fantasy warfare. In the game, players command expansive armies, each with a distinct set of soldiers, monsters, magic, and skills which they will use to build their strategies and earn victory. Today, Fantasy Flight Games is pleased to offer you a look at the battles of Runewars Miniatures Game through the eyes of four new players with the beginning of our Runewars Versus series!
Our four volunteers, all new to the game, have each taken command of a faction which they will lead into combat over a series of matchups. We will accompany them as they learn and adapt their military strategies, growing from inexperienced leaders to masterful commanders. To begin, the forces of darkness face off. Rose will lead the undead forces of Waiqar the Undying, while Lizzie will fight with the screaming hordes of Uthuk Y’llan.
Before the battle commenced, we had a word with our two commanders.
What is your background with Runewars Miniatures Game?
Rose: I would consider myself a VERY casual gamer. Miniatures have always looked complicated and intimidating, and I’m very worried I’ll forget the rules or abilities of my skele-dudes and make a big ole fool of myself. But I mean, why not try something new? What’s the worst thing that could happen?
Lizzie: I’m familiar with the mechanics of the game, but my actual playtime has been limited. I like the Uthuk because they are so unlike anything I’ve seen in other fantasy worlds, so I’m excited to give them a shot.
Is there anything you would like to say to your opponent?
Rose: Please, be gentle.
Lizzie: Bring. It. On.
War and bloodshed consume Terrinoth. Resources have become scarce—especially for those forced to reside in the poisoned landscapes where only foul and evil things can flourish. But recently, word of a ravaged Daqan caravan on the edge of the Mistlands has reached the ears of two opposing militant leaders… and each have decided it’s time to launch a Supply Raid. At the site of the Daqan caravan, a throng of Waiqar the Undying’s followers happen upon an unprepared swarm of Uthuk Y’llan. Peace has never come naturally for either side, and now that they have been set in opposition, only one army can leave with the supplies from the Daqan caravan.
The two commanders eye each other from opposite ends of the field as they send out their forces. Both begin by setting their infantry, Rose’s Reanimate Archers and Lizzie’s Uthuk Berserkers, in the ideal position to gather supplies early while remaining shielded from the heart of the battle. As the deployment phase continues, Rose attempts to keep Ankaur Maro protected from the vicious Flesh Rippers, even if that means he is too far from her infantry to use Regenerative Magic. Rose tries to bait out the deployment of the demon dogs, but with fewer units in the Waiqar army, she must eventually deploy Ankaur Maro and as if reading her fears, the first unit of Flesh Rippers is deployed directly before him.
Waiqar the Undying has had little experience battling against the Uthuk Y’llan as their key quarrel, that which drives them from the peace of the grave, is against the Daqan Lords. This leads to the Waiqar commander underestimating her opponent’s speed. In the corner of the battlefield, the shrieking Berserkers rush towards the same supplies as Rose's Reanimate Archers, causing an unexpected collision in the first round. The bloodshed is destined to begin early in this battle and at the end of the round, Ravos’s all-consuming hunger drives him to the edge of insanity. With no other options for feeding on nearby units, he begins to tear at himself and suffers one wound.
This violent display disturbs the Waiqar command to the point of distraction, and the next round begins her opponent finding the four unstable energy runes needed for her champion, Ravos the Everhungry, to launch an early charge against Waiqar’s Reanimates at Initiative 4. Ravos wastes no time tearing the skeletal soldiers apart, wiping out nearly half their ranks before they can counter-attack.
Last Man Standing
With the beginning of the third round, nearly all units are locked in combat. Only Ankaur Maro, the Reanimate Archers, and a single unit of Flesh Rippers remain unengaged. As the bloodshed begins in earnest, the Uthuk Y'llan seem to have earned the blessing of the Ynfernael yet again, with four unstable energy runes at their disposal alongside one natural and one stable rune. Were he free to help his allies, this powerful display of unstable energy would enable Ankaur Maro to execute a ranged attack with a devastating four white dice. However, the Flesh Rippers still chase the scent of his blood and the sorcerer values his own life above those of his allies. Rather than provide aid, he flees from the demons who remain close behind.
Ravos continues to wipe out Waiqar’s infantry left and right with his Reaping Blade, ensuring that the dice roll in his favor even when they show blanks. Between this upgrade ability and his Brutal 1 keyword, the Uthuk Y’llan hero is able to take out two full trays of Reanimates, leaving just one steadfast soldier behind to face not only Ravos, but two scuttling horrors, the Spined Threshers, who approach from the north.
Can a dead man fear death?
Suddenly, the surrounded soldier is not nearly as alone as he once thought! A pair of Carrion Lancers charge in to aid their comrade and face the dreaded commander of the Locust Swarm. Ravos the Everhungy feels, perhaps for the first time in his life, a twinge of fear. He suffers three wounds at the hands of the Lancers, but he devours the final Reanimate using the consuming hunger of his unit card ability during the end of the round.
Turning the Tide
Seeing the last soldier fall fills Waiqar’s army with a sense of rage as the battle moves into the fourth round. The battle wears on, weakening the bodies and minds of both sides. Dazed by the heat of battle, the Berserkers and Reanimate Archers begin to falter. The Berserkers buckle down and prepare their defenses for a melee that never comes, while the Reanimate Archers launch a ranged attack, expecting their enemies would turn tail and flee.
Rose’s Death Knights attempt to give succor to Ankaur Maro, taking off after the Flesh Rippers, pushing them to the edge of the battlefield, and allowing Ankaur Maro a chance to show his true power. As a necromancer, Ankaur Maro draws upon the dark, unstable power of the Ynfernael and executes a ranged attack with two white dice (and a mortal strike modifier!) against the Spined Threshers. The mortal strike modifier proves to be Ankaur Maro's only saving grace—his dice show only blanks.
“Rose,” the Uthuk Y'llan commander’s voice bellows from across the battlefield, “I’ve made a terrible mistake.” Indeed, going into round five, her orders have forced Ravos the Everhungry to shift directly into the path of the Spined Threshers. This collision that will be difficult to work out of, considering both units are hindered by a noxious swamp nearby. During the confusion, Rose’s Carrion Lancers launch an attack against the Spined Threshers and inflict another wound. But perhaps the Uthuk commander's greatest miscalculation comes in the seventh round, when the Spined Threshers use the last of their energy to charge Ankaur Maro. They fall just millimeters short of contact, almost as if some dark force is protecting the necromancer, who then charges straight into the crab-like horrors and manages to inflict a wound through their hard and bony carapaces.
Ravos the Everhungy, on death’s door, begins to feed on the flesh of his own allies to survive. At this point, the Uthuk Y'llan commander realizes that she does not stand a chance of destroying what remains of Waiqar’s battalion. The tide of battle has turned, and therefore, swallowing her pride, she changes course to flee. While a scant few of her high-value units still live, her only true hope for victory in the final round is to have claimed more objective tokens. Ankaur Maro continues his assault on the Spined Threshers, killing one as the other continues to limp forward. Finally, the smallest unit of Flesh Rippers manage to evade the cruel blades of the Death Knights, carrying the supplies their forces so desperately need. Will it be enough?
End of the Raid
In the end, Ankaur Maro and the Death Knights shrink back into the mists without having claimed any resources from the ravaged caravan. Meanwhile, the Uthuk Y’llan have survivors in most of their units, but all are dripping blood. Ravos and the remaining Spined Thresher survive, though both are severely wounded. The Flesh Rippers managed to gather three objective tokens between their two units, and the Berserkers gained one as well. With these, the Ru tribesmen will be able to bolster their strength as they prepare to extend their reach across Terrinoth.
Before dividing, the two commanders exchange a few final words.
How do you think it went?
Rose: It went really well… for Lizzie. You know, its not as intimidating as I originally thought. There was a lot to remember, but it was easier to remember the longer we played. I want to play as the other factions now so I can be a stronger Waiqar leader. #WaiqarForever
Lizzie: I was hoping to kill all of her soldiers, but I'm happy with how it turned out. Next time, there will be no survivors!
What would you change?
Rose: Next time, I will definitely have Ankaur Maro start closer to the Reanimates. Rookie mistake. I started off fighting in close combat, which I think is influenced by the very first time I played Runewars, and I didn’t switch my tactics up until it was too late. Next time, I'd use ranged attacks much sooner.
Lizzie: I need to be more careful with how my units move. I sent in some of my guys too early, didn’t send some far enough, and just caused an awful traffic-jam. Also, I rarely used my upgrades, so I hope to use those more in the future.
Join The Fight
The battle went to the Uthuk, but the war has only just begun for our players. What tales will your own battles unfold? Over the coming weeks, we'll have several more matchups in the Runewars Versus series, chronicling the battles for the fate of Terrinoth as our players grow into seasoned commanders in the world of Runewars Miniatures Game!
To join the battle for Terrinoth, you can purchase Runewars Miniatures Game (RWM01) at your local retailer or the Fantasy Flight Game website here! Be sure to keep an eye on our webpage as our matchup series continues!