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Musings of the Welsh Wizzard

What happens when dilution of the hobby becomes homeopathic

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June 21, 2018

Peeking Under The Cover of SotK – Force Structure


in my last post I explained a little about the philosophy behind the rules and today I want to go a little bit more into how forces are put together

Disclaimer – as already mentioned we are still playtesting and it possible that some of the things I cover here might change

The Basics

As you expect our rules cover fantastical elements like large creatures, monsters, swarms of small creatures, vehicles etc, but at the heart of any army are the troops and in this article I want to concentrate on them.

so lets go through some basic concepts first, SotK is a unit based game, troops move and fight in units and these units are made up of 1 or more groups. a group is just a collection of figures that are identical so you might have a group of Archers or Spearmen or Light Cavalry, and sometimes these groups can be paraded together in a formation. there are 3 types of groups

  1. Skirmishers – these are groups of 6 figures that have no fixed formation
  2. Formed – these are in groups of 8 in 2 ranks of 4, they often create larger formations with other identical groups
  3. Massed – these are large units of 12 that fight in no fixed formation and are often low quality troops

 

as well as these 3 types we have 2 other options which are

  1. Foot
  2. Mounted

 

these are self explanatory if its a creature that moves on its own feet its a foot unit, if its something that rides on another creature its mounted (see I’m being generic) in the rules there is very difference in the 2 types however mounted units do get better movement rates and some advantages in combat

as its fantasy there is some crossover, e.g. would a unit of Centaurs be classed as foot or mounted? and for edge cases like that have abilities that allow foot troops to act like they are mounted, so whilst a centaur unit is strictly a foot unit, it does act like a mounted one, because they really are just odd shaped horses

this brings us onto another subject which is abilities, we have loads of abilities in the rules and they can be used to really add flavour to groups and separate them out, I’ll go more into abilities in the next article

the other things you have to consider when designing your units is how well troops are at understanding orders, what they are wearing, how they are armed and all these different combos allow you to design a unit to fit your idea.

Leaders and Command and Control

as you would expect in a Lardies game Command and Control is a central  tenet of the rules, all your groups need to be commanded by a leader (except for ones that don’t, but lets not worry about them for now) so when you put your army together you need to include commanders who’s role is to keep the troops motivated and at the very least pointing in the right direction.

so a basic force might look like this

Zog the Merciless – Senior Leader
3 groups of Formed infantry

Mog the Tireless – Sub Commander
2 groups of Skirmisher infantry

Bog the Unwashed – Junior Leader
1 group of formed Cavalry

I mentioned in my last post the ‘Rule of 24’ so I probably should explain that a bit. The Rule of 24 is something I picked up from Mr Clarke (the supreme leader of Lard international) and essentially it means that if you assemble your army in 24’s you get real flexibility when putting your army together

for example if I do 24 infantry figures, I could put them in 3 groups of 8, which gives me a nice block of formed infantry, or 2 groups of 12 massed units (very useful when defending a position) or even 4 groups of skirmishers.

it also means I can play around with different abilities to change how they act on the battlefield.

so if like me you are thinking about picking up some new figures, take a note of the number of figures you need for each type of unit, and remember that you’ll need some extra leaders and start jotting down your ideas on how they would act on the battlefield.

in the next article I’ll give some examples of units and show how the various abilities we have help shape those units

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9 Responses “Peeking Under The Cover of SotK – Force Structure”

  1. April 9, 2018 at 11:22 pm

    Thank you for this. I think I can sort out my shopping list now.

    • MikeH
      MikeH
      April 10, 2018 at 8:37 am

      great I’m glad this was of some use Chris

  2. April 10, 2018 at 1:07 pm

    Really looking forward to this, need to start getting my hoard of old citadel dwarves on the painting table.

    • MikeH
      MikeH
      April 10, 2018 at 1:54 pm

      oh brilliant, I’m looking at my Runequest Trolls and thinking about ways I can use them

  3. Tom WD
    April 10, 2018 at 7:40 pm

    At the risk of being “that guy”, peaks are what mountains have.
    I suspect what you are doing is peeking.
    In order to pique interest.

    The game sounds interesting though.

    • MikeH
      MikeH
      April 10, 2018 at 9:23 pm

      no problem in letting me know the mistake in the title Tom, I should have checked it myself

      I’ll edit both posts now

  4. Shaun
    April 15, 2018 at 4:52 pm

    Hi Mike,

    Are formed cavalry in units of 8? Just trying to decide whether I need to add to my GW Rohan Royal Guard. Also are you allowing for Heroic leaders that can add to the fight as well as give orders?

    • MikeH
      MikeH
      April 15, 2018 at 7:12 pm

      hi Shaun
      yes formed units are all 8’s it doesn’t matter if they are Mounted or on Foot

      we are still talking about Hero characters, at the moment we don’t want to create another Hero-hammer style game, but we know they have exist in the game somehow

      normal leaders do add dice to shooting and melee so that’s taken care of already, but we need to work out if we need a hero style character thats not a leader

  5. Shaun Randell
    April 15, 2018 at 9:23 pm

    OK that sounds good Mike. I mean you cant have Aragorn giving orders and not cutting through Uruks…

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