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So, Age of Sigmar- what's good about it?

Samaritan

One of the good guys.
Validated User
I have enough friends steeped in Warhammer Fantasy to know that it's not been overly well-received by a sizeable chunk of the folks who have been playing Warhammer up til its release... and with the announcement of certain armies being removed entirely, I've seen friends abandon it entirely.

Recently read an article that made it seem like one list (Tomb Kings) might still be 'in', even though the model line is essentially kaput. But what really interested me about the article was this: the idea that GW seems to be letting folks just kinda do 'whatever' where the new ruleset is concerned. That sounds... vaguely... like they're trying to harken back to an earlier edition (was that third, I think?), where army lists were as open-ended as 2e 40k was.

So I find myself vaguely curious about Age of Sigmar again- is there anything to actually recommend it?
 

Spectralent

Time for octopi
Validated User
It's possible you might like the new setting, but that's not realy a game recommendation. You might like gameplay elements like having to dance for rerolls or getting bonuses for not shaving. Other than that, I struggle to recommend it for any purpose.

The primary issue is that all of the things it's supposedly good for; having discussions with your opponent about what you want to play, running story-focused scenarios, "ignoring the balance and just having fun"; are all things you can do with any game. Completely removing the ability to do otherwise isn't actually promoting that, it's just gutting the ability to have a baseline to work from. Kings of War or Infinity won't stop you from going "who cares about winning, let's put everything on the table and goof off for two hours", or whatever, they can just also do other things. So, in short, no, I don't think there's much to recommend about it at all.
 

Jivewookiee

Registered User
Validated User
I was actually excited for AoS and followed the leaks and rumours for months. When they announced the Warscroll idea me and a friend talked about it for a while. Thinking it could be a new, quick balancing system. A Bloodthirster Warscroll gives you one Bloodthirster, A Warscroll for Night Goblin archers gives you 30 archers and so on. Pick 10-20 Scrolls and play. Simple, quick and fun. Thats not how it works. Warscrolls are simply stats for a type of model. There is absolutely no balanced way of building an army, In fact I could take 4 Greater Daemons to your 10 Clan Rats and I would get a bonus for being outnumbered.

Games Workshops slogan of "We are not telling you how to play" or "Play the way you want" is nothing more than a smokescreen to obscure the fact they don't have a game. You and your friends kinda guess if your armies are even and just play. They have taken all strategy Warhammer with unit formations and flanking etc and the game now just becomes a big brawl in the middle of the table. The fact that people around the world are going out of their way to build a points system astonishes me. If the company cannot give a shit about the game, do not support them. They have also stripped the stat line so there is not much difference between units that were in roughly the same range last edition. A Skaven Slave hits a snotling and an Elf lord on the same roll, same for damage.

I can see young teens really enjoying the game, but as an adult gamer I do not think there is much here if you are looking for a game where tactical and strategic decisions matter.

This is of course my opinion and yours may vary. But I hope that helped
 

Samaritan

One of the good guys.
Validated User
I appreciate the insights, though I admit I'm vaguely disappointed. Not in the sense that you all didn't like it, but I was kinda hoping AoS would be, like, a good 'jumping on' point, seeing as how Warhammer still seems to be the big dog.

So... sounds like 3rd edition Fantasy would be what I'd want, were I inclined to run under the Warhammer banner at all...
 

Petter Wäss

I am agape with fnords
Validated User
Some people like the freedom of fielding what you want, in any quantities.
Some people find it easy and fun to run narrative stuff in.
I am not one of those people. I am fine with 9th Age for my mass battle needs (played it twice, really like it)

You might want to talk to VictorVonDoom here on the forums, he seems to really like the game (but then again, he is also a megalomanical techomagical dictator, so he might not be too reliable :) )
 

Dragonlover

Registered User
Validated User
The very lack of points is a plus to me. I also play 40k, and I cannot think about it in any way other than two armies of the same points value facing off against each other.

Age of Sigmar on the other hand gives me the mental flexibility to basically do whatever the hell I want. I don't have to care if people don't like Unbound armies. I don't have to care that point for point, my Chaos Marines are worse than the entire Eldar codex. I can just be like 'I want to run this. Leave the dragon out and we're golden' as can my opponent.

I love the stats. If 40k switched tomorrow, I wouldn't shed a tear. I figure nine times out of ten, a Marine will punch things on a 4. It may as well have To Hit 4+ rather than faffing around with comparing stats. Makes the game much easier to teach and learn as well.

Dragonlover
 

Korror

Storyteller
Validated User
I like Age of Sigmar though I admit I'm more of a painter than a player. My coworker and I have only played a few times but we felt the system was much cleaner than the previous edition. The overly complex rules have pared down without much strategic loss and the game flows quicker and easier. Neither of us liked the formation rules so their removal to a more warhammer 40k approach was appreciated. Dice rolling was pared down without losing much granularity, I always hated how many dice I had to roll to resolve 1 round of combat. Roll to hit, roll to wound, roll for armor save, roll for ward save with optional rerolls for each step. Now it's just roll to hit, roll to save with special rules covering the edge cases of high toughness units and ward saves. Same with the magic system, it's simpler than before but still accomplishes the same role as the old system

Age of Sigmar is 90% of the strategic depth of the old game with only 25% of the rules. That's a pretty good job for any designer.

Now for the bad stuff, there is no army building guidelines so we had to eyeball our first couple battles to ensure the forces were even. We eventually switched to a fan devised system but in our first combats, we underestimated the power and durability of monster units (stupid nercosphynix). We had thought since they lost their astronomical toughness, they wouldn't be as unstoppable as the old versions but their special rules + healing from the tomb kings they were just as invincible to my high elves as they were before. You really are dependent on 3rd party guidelines for army construction as the ones in the book aren't adequate at all. Also, the lore isn't anything to write home about either. I'm a primary high elf player and I really don't care about the sigmarites so there's nothing in the lore for me.

Age of Sigmar is a simpler, cleaner version of Warhammer. It's not perfect and it may not be what people are looking for but I respect the attempt.
 

The Incredible Bohemian

Social Justice Spy
Validated User
It's Not For Me, & as you can see from this thread, lots of grognards feel the same way. That doesn't mean it isn't for you though. The "dancing for a re-roll" rules were really a one-time, not-taking-the-game-too-seriously thing & don't feature in the more recent published material. It isn't without strategy, either. Target optimisation is the place it gets felt the most - rather than melee combat playing out with very few choices to make (as in all previous editions), now you get to decide who goes first & who they try to kill. Is it very deep? No. Does that mean it can't be fun? No.

I also think that getting rid of list building & points values wasn't necessarily a dreadful idea. Grognards enjoyed it, but a teenager wanting to push models around & throw dice probably can't be bothered. Dragonlover is right, too - nine times out of ten, a marine WILL punch things on a 4. Stripping out the fuss makes sense.

I loved WFB & I loved manoeuvering blocks of troops, but I don't think AoS is completely unlovable. It just isn't for us any more. It might be for you.
 

komradebob

Registered User
Validated User
As an outside, AoS seems like GW really stuffing themselves by switching gears radically, trying to get to the more "casual" sort of minis gaming that exists outside of their model ( and imitators) while still trying to convince their market to pay those prices that went along with competitive gaming.

It's a bad attempt to match very unlike things up.

OTOH, I do find some humor in WHFB fans referring to themselves as grognards. The guys I know who I'd call grognards have been saying disparaging things about the PV+ Build just your army approach promoted by GW to their great economic benefit for decades now.
 
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