Good Monday morning. Our entry this week talks about the new Hero units in Demonworld Miniatures and how they affect gameplay.
The esteemed and respected commanders of any particular race or faction are known as Heroes. These personalities are well-known figures that are looked up to and have gained notoriety for one reason or another. Sometimes the characters are naturally charismatic and can easily inspire troops to follow them into battle. Others have brilliant tactical minds or are fearsome warriors and garner fame through military victory, while collecting a force of loyal fighters under them along the way. Still other heroes are nobles or societal figureheads and become Heroes simply by virtue of their fame. Whatever the individual’s story, all Heroes have certain benefits that they impart on the forces under their command.
To begin, every Hero model has a Commander rating as one of the special traits listed in its stat block, accompanied by a number between 1 and 6. This designation grants several benefits to gameplay. First of these is the Hero’s Hits stat. The higher the Commander rating, the more hits the unit has, increasing its survivability. The point cost of these extra hits is reflected in the unit’s army point cost.
Secondly, the Commander rating also grants nearby allied units with a Morale bonus. When a unit close to the Commander unit is making a Morale save triggered by damage taken or a spell’s effect, the unit adds the Hero’s Commander rating to its own Morale stat to determine the target number for the roll. This effect can greatly increase that unit’s chances of avoiding a rout and remaining in the fight.
Lastly, a Hero’s Commander rating affects enemy units as well. When an opposing unit comes within range of a Hero with a high enough Commander rating, that unit must make an immediate morale save. Enemies that fail this morale save must take extra time to regroup or suffer penalties to their attack and movement. A Hero that is truly inspiring to its allies can also be quite intimidating to its enemies.
The Elf Army book also introduces two new Hero-exclusive special abilities; Inspiring and Relentless.
Inspiring is a trait reserved for Heroes that increases the unit’s Commander rating without increasing its Hits. A Hero may be especially charismatic and draw powerful loyalty from his or her troops, that does not always equate to strong martial or physical ability. A priestess, for example, might be a beacon of hope and adored by her people, but that does not make her any more likely to survive direct hits in combat. The Inspiring trait gives her that additional potency in her imparted Morale bonuses, but she is still fragile in direct confrontation.
Conversely, Relentless bestows additional Hits to a Hero without increasing its Commander rating. Every race has those individuals who are amazing fighters and have defeated hundreds of enemies single-handedly, but are really just terrible leaders. They hog all the glory. They are conceited and arrogant. Or maybe they make bad tactical decisions in the heat of battle or are simply inexperienced captains. These Heroes are reliable in a fight, but haven’t earned the same level of loyalty or confidence within the army.
There are 24 new Elven Heroes in the upcoming book. They will be an integral part of any army. We also plan on releasing the Dwarven and Thain Heroes on this blog, available for free, within the next few weeks. Check in regularly to see them when they post.