Runewars Versus: Courageous Contention
The Second Entry in the Matchup Series for Runewars Miniatures Game
The battle for Terrinoth continues in Runewars Miniatures Game, the rank-and-file game of tactical fantasy warfare where four factions vie for dominance over the realm. As players build their armies filled with unique soldiers and upgrades, they create strategies unique to their playstyle to ensure victory over their foes. In the Runewars Versus series, we're excited to show you the heart of these battles, continuing today with the Latari Elves and Daqan Lords factions facing off!
In Runewars Versus, we have gathered four players, new to the game, to control each faction featured in Runewars Miniatures Game, accompanying them as they learn and change military strategies and grow as leaders. In our last matchup article, two of our players commanding Waiqar the Undying and the Uthuk Y’llan took the battlefield. Today, friend turns against friend as the next two factions join the fray. Allen will lead the Latari Elves against Owen and his army of the Daqan Lords.
Prior to their battle, we met with each of our commanders to talk about the upcoming match.
Is there anything you are worried about in the upcoming match?
Allen: I have a previous training game where I learned the basics of Runewars. I’m worried about properly maneuvering my units and getting them into the positions I want, especially since I’m playing the Latari. I’ve heard their strength is how maneuverable they are, and I don’t know if I’ll be able to take full advantage of this.
Owen: I have a couple of training games under my belt. I’m also a student of Sun Tzu’s The Art of War, which should give me the edge in the battle. I’m just worried about ruining my friendship with Allen. He’s a nice guy and I’d hate to see him get dejected when I soundly defeat him.
Is there anything you would like to say to you opponent?
Allen: Bring it.
Owen: I feel really bad. Not only am I going to completely embarrass you, but your devastating loss will be posted for the whole internet to see. I hope we can still be friends.
Suspicion and Prejudice
When Lord Hawthorne was young, his home of Seragart was beset by a horde of barbarians led by the dark sorcerer Ankaur Maro, the champion of Waiqar the Undying. The Daqan hero led his troops to victory that day, but he has had a mistrust of magic ever since. Now, he is confronted by a magic-wielding warrior perhaps more powerful than the necromancer in the form of Maegan Cyndewin. Despite her status within the Latari community, her own parentage is linked to the foul elf who helped bring about the First Darkness. Distrust has led to conflict, and now the Latari and the Daqan find themselves on opposite sides of the battlefield, weapons drawn. No good can come of this.
Lord Hawthorne atop his noble steed leads an immense force of the Oathsworn Cavalry, filling nine full trays. Kari Wraithstalker waits in the wings, ready to offer aid with two Rune Golems. The Heavy Crossbowmen stand ready to provide ranged support. The Daqan Lords are facing down the power of two heroes in the Latari army—Maegan Cyndewin and Aliana of Summersong. A smaller pack of Leonx Riders makes up the elven cavalry, covered by the Deepwood Archers. But perhaps the elves’ greatest assets are the four separate Aymhelin Scions who are ready to tangle the enemy in their Vicious Roots. The objective for each army in this battle is to Break Their Defenses, and to this end the Daqan have prepared a Hammer and Anvil assault with their seemingly unstoppable cavalry positioned dead center, ready to stampede across the battlefield. If they are successful, their commander will earn a twenty-point objective token for each unit touching his opponent’s deployment area.
Divide and Conquer
Thus, the conflict begins with two friends thrown into contention. To counter the Daqan’s strong central placement, the Latari divide their forces in twain, with two trays of Archers, two Scions, and one hero on each side. Aliana lends her loyal Leonx cavalry to Maegan’s command, but this proves to be a mistake in the first round as Maegan’s moose panics and accidently runs into the Leonx Riders right out of the gate.
The Daqan begin their chase by using higher value march actions between initiatives three and six, while the Latari take early advantage of the terrain. The Deepwood Archers take shelter behind a nearby crumbling wall and the Leonx move into a fae-infested glade. To an untrained eye, it may appear that the Latari are already on the run as they move into a defensive position. However, the Latari are not falling behind—they are lying in wait. At initiative six, they pounce. Much to the Daqan commander’s surprise, the Deepwood Archers are not the only elves that feature a ranged attack. Their siege units, the Aymhelin Scions, have ranged attacks, and they are inescapably dispersed across the battlefield. A Crossbowman becomes the first casualty as his armor is crushed with him inside when a Scion attacks with all the force of a catapult.
Head to Head
In the third round, the runes reveal three natural and one stable rune. Using this strengthened arcane link, an Aymhelin Scion charges the Oathsworn Cavalry at initiative three, flanking and locking them down with an immobilize token. With any luck, this will ensure the survival of its fellow forest guardians, as the centerpiece of the Daqan army is rendered temporarily motionless. Lord Hawthorne is now the last free horseman. The fate of the battle rests on his shoulders.
Amidst the heat of battle, Lord Hawthorne and Maegan Cyndewin lock eyes. Death and destruction surrounds them, but this is the fight they have been waiting for. Hawthorne rides into Latari territory and charges the sorceress, inflicting three wounds in his initial pass. Unfortunately for Cyndewin, she thought her speed would outshine that of Lord Hawthorne, allowing her to charge first. If she had had the initiative, this would be true, but as it stands she is severely wounded and loses her chance to attack this round! Now trapped in close combat, the situation looks bleak for the elven sorceress—her first chance to execute a melee action is at initiative four, while Lord Hawthorne’s is at initiative two.
Lord Hawthorne raises his weapon. His famed sword, the Dawnblade, glints in the light for a single moment before his brings it down upon the head of Maegan Cyndewin. The dice reveal a mortal strike and a hit, more than enough to end Cyndewin’s life.
Upon seeing the duel come to its conclusion, the other heroes on the battlefield—Kari Wraithstalker and Aliana of Summersong—become inspired: one with glorious hope and the other with vengeful fury. Hopelessly surrounded by Rune Golems and without hope of aid, Aliana uses all of her skills, including Ambush Predator to gain Lethal 4. With this, she lands seven hits and adds a mortal strike modifier from her unit card before she even rolls the dice. She ends with a total of ten hits, enough to kill one Golem and wound the other.
Courage and Sacrifice
Going into round five, the battle has already been a bloodbath, with high-value units falling like cannon fodder. Strategies are vital and both commanders are feeling the stress. The Heavy Crossbowmen are faced with a difficult decision between two potential enemies within range of their advanced weaponry: the Deepwood Archers who have been picking off their Daqan allies, and an Aymhelin Scion. Whichever unit is left standing will attack and perhaps destroy their already depleted unit in the next round. The Scion is deadlier, but the pride of the Daqan is fierce, and therefore the choice is clear. The Heavy Crossbowmen avenge their fallen comrades by taking out the remains of the archers behind their Fortified position, and prepare to suffer the consequences of leaving the Scion standing.
In the sixth round, the Scion inevitably charges the Heavy Crossbowmen, immobilizing them and crushing a soldier in their vines. The Daqan fighters attempt to lessen their losses by returning with a melee, but this is not where their strength lies. With only a single blue die, they are unable to break the forest guardian’s defenses. Still determined, they continue the assault in the penultimate round with a bonus hit dialed in. Here, they manage to find a bit of luck and roll another hit on the normally surge-heavy die and, since there is only one stable rune in play this round, they match the Scion’s defenses and inflict a single wound.
But this Scion is not a lone sentry like its brethren that had been left to fight and fall. The Leonx Riders waiting in their enemy’s deployment zone now approach from the south, preparing to flank the Heavy Crossbowmen before they eliminate another Aymhelin Scion. Completing the ambush, Aliana of Summersong looms in the north.
The Bitter End
The final round of the battle is vital. Both sides still have valuable heroes in play and while the Latari have one more unit and one more objective token than the Daqan, the mortals have higher value units. Any death could be the determining factor of the battle. Aware of this, Kari carefully selects her final target as the last Leonx Rider. Her successful attack takes out the last of the unit, denying the Latari the points from both the rider himself and his objective token. In retaliation, Aliana of Summersong kills the last Heavy Crossbowmen with her Packleader’s Spear.
Just like that, it’s over. The military commanders tend the wounded and count the dead. Both sides end with two objective tokens, meaning the remaining units’ values will determine the victor. Owen of the Daqan comes away with 162 points, with both of his heroes still alive. Meanwhile, the Latari’s loss of Maegan Cyndewin created a gap they could not overcome, and Allen ends with 115 points total. With this, victory goes to the Daqan and the Latari are sent to shelter beneath the bows of the Aymhelin Forest.
How do you think it went?
Owen: It went well. I learned that the game isn’t all about attacking every turn. Allen was able to lock my cavalry down with stun tokens for much of the game, so I had to rely on my weaker units to get the work done.
Allen: I made some errors that contributed to my defeat, but I don’t think any one thing doomed me. It was tense all the way up to the last round. I was surprised how much of an advantage having more ranks of units gives you. There were several times that I didn’t do any damage because I had single trays. I won’t repeat my rookie mistakes.
What would you change?
Owen: I had Lord Hawthorne doing his own thing, and by the end of the match he was so far removed that he couldn’t assist anyone. I would keep him closer to the cavalry to inspire them and remove stun tokens.
Allen: I would take advantage of my superior numbers earlier in the game. I spent too much time trying to thin his ranks rather than focusing on the objective that would have scored me a lot of points.
Win the Day
Today, victory went to the Daqan, but with all four factions now battling for control, the fight will only become more intense. If you wish to join the battle for Terrinoth yourself as either the Latari or Daqan, all units featured in today’s match are available either at your local retailer or on our website. How will your tale unfold? Join the battle for the realm and bend Terrinoth to your will!
Purchase Runewars Miniatures Game (RWM01) at your local retailer today or on our website here! Keep an eye on the Fantasy Flight Games website for more matchups as the Runewars Versus series continues!