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March 29 2010

Rob Kouba and Battles of Westeros

Rob Kouba answers more than ten questions about Battles of Westeros at The Hopeless Gamer.

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March 23 2010

Battles of Westeros Battle Report

The Hopeless Gamer has an excellent and detailed battle report on the upcoming Battles of Westeros ‘BattleLore’ game. More information is promised soon. Check it out.

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March 19 2010

Official Site Info: Horrific Horde

Horrific Horde Expansion

A big surprise from Fantasy Flight Games this morning with the announcement of the BattleLore: Horrific Horde expansion set!

It’s an interesting release, for several reasons. Firstly, veteran players will probably not get too excited about the 42 figures in this set: we’ve seen the Goblin Swordsmen, Hobgoblin Cavalry and Hobgoblin Hyena Riders before (interestingly, there are no Drummers, Spear Bearers and Slingers from the Goblin Skirmishers set, so it isn’t really an entire Goblin army). The only new units are some Goblin Halberdiers, and some fantastic-looking Ogres.

However, what this new set does tell us is that FFG are listening to the fans and releasing large expansion sets of one racial type. I think I can safely predict that a big dwarf set will be the next release, consolidating some of the units from the Dwarven Battalion and Scottish Wars sets, plus some new Dwarf units. But after that, perhaps we’ll finally see new BattleLore races on the battlefield?
(As a personal aside, I would love to see the sculpt for green and blue banner goblins replaced. It never seemed to match the style and scale of the other goblin figures.)

Anyway, back to the Horrific Horde! As well as the figures, you get unit summary and specialist cards, weapon summary cards for the updated Goblin Slinger rules, 15 deployment cards to use with Call to Arms, and a rulebook with five new Adventures. I would guess that this all comes in a box the size of the Scottish Wars and Heroes expansions.

The Ogre is a great looking figure and certainly has a lot more ‘oomph’ than the Troll sculpt. It can move one hex and battle, and wields a spiked club for 4d, hitting on a bonus strike; it’s also subject to a ‘Frenzy’ rule. Also, a unit consists of three figures, which is something new, so it’s a red banner unit not a creature.

Is the start of a new series of much-awaited army packs? Elves, undead, orcs …?

The Horrific Horde is coming this (northern hermisphere) summer.

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March 18 2010

Battles of Westeros News

Fantasy Flight Games has released a little bit of information about the upcoming ‘BattleLore spinoff’ Battles of Westeros.

There’s our first glimpse of some nice-looking terrain tiles (it would be great if these were compatible with existing BattleLore), and news that the board can be played in both the normal horizontal configuration (which you can expand with add extra boards) and a long lengthwise configuration. But most radically, there are no flanks on the board. Instead, in most circumstances you can only order units if they are controlled—that is, within two hexes of a commander.

For more detail, visit the Fantasy Flight website.

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March 15 2010

Got a Question for Rob Kouba, designer of Battles of Westeros?

If you do, get on over to The Hopeless Gamer and ask it!

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February 21 2010

Battles of Westeros BattleLore Game Announced!

Battles of Westeros

Information has just come in that a new BattleLore core set has been announced at Sunday’s Fantasy Flight Games Event Center opening.

Fantasy Flight Games has created a BattleLore game set in George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire setting, the ‘realistic’ medieval fantasy world already licenced by FFG in A Games of Thrones: The Board Game and A Game of Thrones LCG.

Game design is by Robert Kouba, ‘inspired by the classic game created by Richard Borg’. Kouba has in the past worked on expansions for Descent, Starcraft, and Tide of Iron.

Game Contents
1 Rulebook
1 Westeros Battle Plans Book
1 Six-panel Map Board
138 Plastic Figures
138 Plastic Bases
36 Banner Poles
8 Custom Dice
110 Cards
2 Command Boards
1 Round Track and 1 Round Marker
2 Victory Point Markers
2 Morale Segments, 1 Moral Hub and 1 Morale Marker
50 Order Tokens
86 Unit Banners
14 Control Markers
6 Directional Tokens
20 Engagment Tokens
32 Overlay Map Pieces
3 Archer Tokens
6 Devestation Tokens
13 Tactical Objective Tokens
18 Fire Tokens
1 Catelyn Stark Token, 2 Edmure Tully Tokens
7 tent Tokens
8 Siege Tower Tokens
9 Catapult Targeting Tokens
10 Commander Discs
1 Momentum Token

Interesting that the figures seem to come with separate bases. It’s obvious from a look at this list that this new game is going to be somewhat more complex that basic BattleLore—just look at all those extra tokens for a start! It would also appear that the new game will put magic in the background—if not out of the picture entirely—as I believe the books do not feature magic at all.

For continuing coverage, visit The Hopeless Gamer blog, who is currently posting about the game, including some images of the miniatures. Thanks go to that blog for the photo and information posted above. No doubt the official launch on the Fantasy Flight Games website will be tomorrow!

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September 01 2009

Official Site Info: Creatures

Creatures Expansion

Next up from the series of previews from Fantasy Flight Games is a look at the cards for the three creatures (two of which are models we’ve seen before, the Giant and Elemental, previously only available as promo figures) in the upcoming BattleLore: Creatures expansion set.

Again, it’s mostly flavour text, but we do see the cards for the Wood Giant (Green banner), Hydra (Blue banner) and Rock Elemental (Red banner).

The Wood Giant moves up to 2 hexes and battles, and retreats 2 hexes per flag. His damage is 2 dice. Being a denizen of the forests, he ignores the movement and combat restrictions of woods, so he can move through them and also battle on a turn he moves into them. Each bonus strike is re-rolled for additional hits or flags until no more bonus strikes are rolled. The Giant player can force his target to retreat 2 hexes for every Lore he rolls.

The Hydra is going to be the figure everyone will want from this set, with its interchangeable heads. It may move up to 2 hexes and battle, and retreats 2 hexes per flag. It’s melee damage is 1 dice plus 1 dice per head, and it also hits on a bonus strike symbol. The Hydra is only hit on its banner colour, and one neck is removed for each hit! The fun continues when a Hydra rolls a Lore symbol in melee—if it is missing a neck, a neck with 2 heads can take its place! Great stuff.

The red Earth Elemental is a magical force to be reckoned with. It moves a number of spaces equal to the Lore you spend (ignoring movement and terrain restrictions), it does not retreat, and it has a melee attack of 4 dice. It’s melee attack does a big 4 dice damage and hits on a bonus strike. It’s 1 Lore Tremor attack makes all surrounding units retreat one hex for each Lore, and its 2 Lore dice Earthquake attack makes all surrounding units take 1 hit and retreat.

However, the Earth Elemental must be kept on the go—if it is not ordered in a turn it is removed and must be summoned again.
Previews of the actual figures and the dragons soon, hopefully.

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August 28 2009

Official Site Info: Dragons

Dragons Expansion

The information from Fantasy Flight Games just keeps pouring in—now, a look at the abilities of the three types of dragons in the upcoming BattleLore: Dragons expansion set.

The article is mainly flavour text, but it does show us the abilities and attacks of the three types: the Wood Wyvern (Green banner), Ice Drake (Blue banner) and Fire Dragon (Red banner).
All the basic information is the same, except the melee attack damage, which is 2 dice for the Wyvern, 3 dice for the Drake and 4 dice for the Fire Dragon. All the Dragons hit on a Bonus Strike result. As for movement, they can all move up to 2 hexes and battle, or fly up to 4 hexes and then use their breath attack. Retreat is 3 hexes per flag, with the option of ignoring the first flag.

Dragon are certainly going to be dominant, fast-moving features on the battlefield, and when Lore is paid (1 for the Wyvern, 2 for the Drake, and 3 for the Fire Dragon), the hexes that are flown over are going to feel the effects of their horrific breath weapons! The Wood Wyvern can unleash a Poison Breath attack that does 2 dice damage against every hex flown over. Each Lore rolled equals a Poison Breath token, the effects of which are still unclear.

The Ice Drake has a Frost Breath attack that does 3 dice damage and each Lore rolled equals a Frost Breath token, and the Fire Dragon’s Fire Breath attack does 4 dice damage and doles out Fire Breath tokens.

No doubt we’ll soon find out the additional effects of these Breath tokens. Dragons and Heroes are certainly going to shake up the battlefields of BattleLore however!

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August 24 2009

BattleLore Rules Online

The Rules for BattleLore: heroes are now available to download from the Fantasy Flight Games BattleLore Support page. Also, the expansion comes with a pad of Hero record sheets, but you can download more directly from this page.

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August 16 2009

Heroes and Creatures on their way!

Fantasy Flight games has announced that the Dragons and Creatures expansions—yep, two separate expansions—will be available before the end of the year.

See the video of CEO Christian Petersen’s GenCon speech here at the Fantasy Flight website (click the Friday clip). The announcement is about three-quarters of the way through.

You can see the spectacular multi-headed Hydra, which comes with the old hill giant and earth elemental figures, here, and the packaging for both sets here.

According to information on the FFG forums by people at GenCon, Dragons comes with three figures: the Fire Dragon is a red banner creature, the Ice Drake is blue, and the Forest Wyvern is green. You need two hits to trigger your critical hit roll, and always roll one die less than normal. They all have the Fly ability and have a 4 dice attack.
Creatures will include the Rock Elemental and the Forest Giant (the same figures as before but renamed) as well as a Hydra with modular heads. The Hydra is a blue banner figure and comes with 6 different heads and necks—every time it takes a a banner colour hit it loses a neck, but if it rolls a Lore, it gains a new one!

The Elemental and Giant will have modified rules, plus modified rules for a new version of the Spider called a Blue Widow Spider will be included.

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