Ulthuan

Ulthuan, Home of the Asur
It is currently Tue Dec 18, 2018 5:00 pm

All times are UTC




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 9 posts ] 
Author Message
 Post subject: Grand alliance order
PostPosted: Sat Apr 16, 2016 8:21 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 19, 2008 10:41 am
Posts: 664
I've just picked up the new grand alliance order book. High elves are split into several factions, with each of the elite infantry being in different factions.

All core choice are gone, no spears, archers, silver helms or reavers.

The factions that most interest me are the eldritch council (all mages and swordmaster) and the order draconis (old prince/noble, dragon and dragon princes).

The battalion for the order draconis is a Dragonlord and two units of dragon princes, which, once a game, get to charge twice in the same turn. Seems pretty good.

I'm currently in the process of re-painting my dragon red!

_________________
"The trouble with having an open mind, of course, is that people will insist on coming along and trying to put things in it."
— Terry Pratchett


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Grand alliance order
PostPosted: Mon Apr 18, 2016 7:31 am 
Offline
Auctor Aeternitatum
User avatar

Joined: Wed Apr 22, 2009 1:07 pm
Posts: 6876
Location: The city of Spires
Nobody liked spears or archers anyway ;)

How does the factions dynamics work? You can freely mix and match between factions but get some bonuses for taking units from the same/a single faction?

What do you think about the new fluff they've given to the different factions?

Rod

_________________
Eirik wrote:
Please try to remember that, no matter how 'official' the source seems, rumours are basically just a dictionary combined with a random number generator

For Nagarythe: Come to the dark side.
PS: Bring cookies!

Check out my plog
Painting progress, done/in progress/in box: 167/33/91


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Grand alliance order
PostPosted: Tue Apr 19, 2016 5:36 pm 
Offline
User avatar

Joined: Thu Jun 19, 2008 10:41 am
Posts: 664
The factions don't interact at all, so the command ability from a Dragonlord doesn't affect white lions, for example. There are two new battalions, the dragon one mentioned above and a phoenix one which is two phoenixes, anointed and phoenix guard. This gets bonus attacks from the phoenixes.

The fluff is OK, I'm still not sure why there are still mortals after thousands of years (did Sigmar find their souls or something? I'm not sure). The mages still have white towers. It's not clear where dragons live and why they are allies other than they hate chaos. The white lions are now lion rangers who live in fortress monasteries and are wandering mystics. Unfortunately one of the illustrations is of khorhil, which is a bit rich after they has tyrion kill him in the old world. Shadow warriors are grouped with the chariots and are messengers, no mention of them hating dark elves. Interestingly, after an elf falls in battle, he could be taken to the Ur-phoenix (like a boss phoenix, I think it is one of the godbeasts) who wraps his wings around the elf who is then reborn as a phoenix guard.

Dark elves are in the book as well, they now get on with high elves. I like the shadow blade faction, it is just an assassin and dark riders, but these guys really hate chaos and do away with agents and heroes of chaos in the dead of night.

Sisters of averlorn are now in with the wood elves, after their mistress became a god and buggered off to play in the woods.

I'm sure some of this could be developed. Most units seem to have a coherent place in the world. I suppose if you ignore all the old fluff, some of the ideas (like being reincarnated as a phoenix guard) are pretty cool.

_________________
"The trouble with having an open mind, of course, is that people will insist on coming along and trying to put things in it."
— Terry Pratchett


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Grand alliance order
PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 9:34 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu Oct 02, 2008 7:22 am
Posts: 542
I think there is some interesting potential in the ‘microfactions’. For instance, consider the Order Draconis. In Warhammer-that-was, a pure Caledorian army would have Dragon Princes, maybe a dragon or two, spearelf and archer retainers, maybe the odd RBT or unit of Silver Helms as minor Caledorian nobles that didn’t fulfil the requirements for being a DP.

Currently, the Order Draconis is basically just the Dragon Blades (the old Dragon Princes) and characters both on horse and on dragon. However, seeing the Order Draconis expanded into a full military order could lead to an interesting range of models. Could they have dismounted knights? Retainers that fight as infantry or archers, with draconic themes to their armour that are subtler than the full knights? The Corsair+Scourgerunner faction’s fluff indicates that one of its main activities is hunting down monsters for the Orders Draconis and Serpentis (the former Dark Elf equivalent, comprising Black Dragons, Hydras, and all things Cold One *ahem* Drakespawn) – while the Order Draconis will probably always have a nobler cast than the Order Serpentis, might that be a hint that sometime they’ll get a wider range of mounts than horses and dragons?

Expanding similar thinking to the other aelf microfactions could lead to an interesting and flavourful range – you probably still wouldn’t have any of them with more than a half-dozen or so choices, but you can link them together in interesting ways while still carrying the impression that any one could raise an effective military force in its own right if it had to. The question, of course, is will Citadel exploit that potential? Part of the business case of AoS seems to be to eliminate or at least scale back old and redundant miniatures while keeping the cool stuff, so a broadening as discussed above might be avoided on the basis that they would just be re-introducing redundancies. On the other hand, the Citadel-GW-FW conglomerate was making noises around the time AoS was being devised that they see themselves as a miniatures company first and foremost and a games company second: they might consider Order Draconis retainers and Lion Ranger archers to make a better business case than generic High Elf spearmen and archers that nobody liked were only purchased because the rules said the army had to have them.

Have to say, though, that at this point my interest in AoS is pretty much limited to ‘will it result in interesting miniatures’. I’ll consider buying miniatures that look interesting as long as they’re priced reasonably, but I don’t think I’ll be looking to make an army.

(Regarding where mortals came from… the impression I ‘ve had from what little AoS fluff I’ve looked at is that the Incarnates of the various Winds of Magic at the end of the End Times became the gods of the new realms (although I have no idea what happened with the winds that incarnated twice), and before Chaos found the new realms they created mortals to inhabit them based on the mortals of the original Warhammer world. Possibly a similar process to the Slann now creating the Seraphon from their memories, but the wind-holders were much more powerful and able to create genuine living beings rather than just constructs of celestial energy.)


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Grand alliance order
PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 10:34 am 
Offline
Auctor Aeternitatum
User avatar

Joined: Wed Apr 22, 2009 1:07 pm
Posts: 6876
Location: The city of Spires
Interesting idea regarding the microfactions. It could be that the approach GW is taking is a bit "throw it all at the wall and see what sticks". As in, design several microfractions, see which ones are popular and slowly expand on them. The initial change to AoS was an abrupt severance from the old world. But after that, most of the changes have been small steps towards a different world (unless you're a TK player of course). So, these small steps fit into that gradual approach which has been build into the design of AoS and is easily supported by the flexibility of its rules.

There is any number of dragon related models you can think of. All of which offer cool modelling opportunities. So I can definitely see GW moving forward with the Order Draconis. But much will depend on actual sales numbers I think. If people like them, GW will give them more of it.

draxynnic wrote:
I’ll consider buying miniatures [...] as long as they’re priced reasonably

So, you'll not buy any GW models then? ;) :P

Rod

_________________
Eirik wrote:
Please try to remember that, no matter how 'official' the source seems, rumours are basically just a dictionary combined with a random number generator

For Nagarythe: Come to the dark side.
PS: Bring cookies!

Check out my plog
Painting progress, done/in progress/in box: 167/33/91


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Grand alliance order
PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 11:52 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu Oct 02, 2008 7:22 am
Posts: 542
Hahahah... yeah. Most of the later WHFB stuff was... expensive, but the argument could be made that the higher quality deserved it (a lot of miniatures I didn't like for stylistic reasons, but that's subjective). Some of the stuff that's coming out at the moment... well. Dracothian Guard are more expensive individually than a whole box of Dragon Princes. The Stardrake is nearly three times as expensive as the Elven dragons. The cheapest Stormcast Eternal minis I can find on the site are a box of three for about the same individual price as Dragon Princes, and most are significantly more expensive than Dragon Princes - there are character boxes, with just one character model, that cost as much or more than the Dragon Princes box.

Seriously, I recognise that the Sigmarine models are chunkier than anything in the elven range ever was, but still, WTF? When I first saw those prices, I thought there was an error in the website. But the third-party retailers are showing similar prices, so... Really, GW? Really?

I suspect you're right about the 'see what sticks' attitude. I bet they have figures on which models are in demand and which aren't - the microfactions which are getting a lot of sales will probably grow, while those that aren't will probably be quietly dropped (and possibly have replacements that perform a similar function appear in the more popular factions, with the suggestion made that people who own those minis can say they count as the replacements). It's what I'd do if I was in charge and my primary concern was the bottom line.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Grand alliance order
PostPosted: Tue Jul 26, 2016 6:55 pm 
Offline
Green Istari

Joined: Sat Sep 13, 2008 11:26 am
Posts: 12281
Location: Otherworld
What I'm wondering is how many models they're selling to AoS players, how many to pure collectors and how many to players of other games?

_________________
A New Blog (Orcs and Goblins)
viewtopic.php?f=5&t=70550
Cavalry Prince Reloaded
viewtopic.php?f=80&t=70001


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Grand alliance order
PostPosted: Wed Jul 27, 2016 10:37 am 
Offline
Auctor Aeternitatum
User avatar

Joined: Wed Apr 22, 2009 1:07 pm
Posts: 6876
Location: The city of Spires
As for prices, they've reached the point where I wouldn't buy a model unless I'm sure I'd need one for a game. In the past, I've considered getting models just because they're great models. Or to cut them up and use them for conversions and terrain pieces. But I can't justify (to myself) spending 100+ euro's on an everqueen model I'll never use. Or even worse, buying it only to cut it up for spare parts.
SpellArcher wrote:
What I'm wondering is how many models they're selling to AoS players, how many to pure collectors and how many to players of other games?

Good question. I also wonder if GW decision to move to round bases influences this at all or not. Most fantasy wargames have square bases and needing to purchase separate bases could increase the barrier to purchase.

I was in a GW store a while back and asked the guys there about how they felt AoS was doing. Of course there is some bias the answer. But overall they felt that AoS was selling decently. With a run-rate comparable to WH. Some (many) old players had left. But they were replaced by newer ones and 40k players

Rod

_________________
Eirik wrote:
Please try to remember that, no matter how 'official' the source seems, rumours are basically just a dictionary combined with a random number generator

For Nagarythe: Come to the dark side.
PS: Bring cookies!

Check out my plog
Painting progress, done/in progress/in box: 167/33/91


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
 Post subject: Re: Grand alliance order
PostPosted: Mon Aug 01, 2016 11:20 am 
Offline

Joined: Thu Oct 02, 2008 7:22 am
Posts: 542
It is an interesting question, which might influence what ratio of sales there are. Pure collectors would probably buy more of the bigger setpiece models. For players of other games, they'd probably buy things that can fit nicely into whatever they're playing: Empire/Bretonnian stuff for purely historical wargaming, stuff that doesn't have too much unique Warhammer for more generic fantasy wargaming, stuff that makes good PCs for roleplaying (I've done that on occasion), and so on.

It possibly is something where they've shot themselves in the foot a bit: having their stuff be more unique means it's harder for people to buy from another company and slot it in, but it also means it's harder for their stuff to be used in other games too, which can also result in lost sales.

Certainly, the days when White Dwarf actively encouraged things like converting a hovertank out of a drink bottle are long gone. The ironic thing being, of course, that they built up by being hobby facilitators, and the more corporate and profit-focused they become, the more they've lost... and it's not the first time I've seen it happen to a gaming company. Which, incidentally, ties into the prices as well... miniatures wargaming was always something that was hard for a teenager or uni student on limited funds to get into, but now they're making it pretty much out of reach.

I'd thought a bit on why 40K became so much more popular than WHF, and I think a large part of it is that it's easier to get into on a small investment. Part of that is that 40K works on smaller scales than WHF, while WHF kept pushing towards having bigger and bigger units. AoS has stepped in that direction, but I think the other part is that MEQ factions were such a new player friendly faction. Not just in being more forgiving of mistakes than other factions (although they are), but because you can get a decent point value with relatively little investment in real money, so a cash-strapped student can still get into the hobby.

With AoS, however... the Stormcast Eternals are clearly Sigmarines, but they don't have the affordability of Space Marines.

Incidentally, one other thing running through my mind, going back to the microfactions...

I had a look at the General's Compendium on Friday. One thing I noticed was that each of the microfactions had a unit that counted as 'battleline' if and only if the entire army was from that faction. However, while that works for fully developed factions, for the microfactions there simply isn't enough variety for them to provide a balanced force on their own... and as soon as you add a squad of archers (for instance), it's no longer an army that's exclusive to that microfaction and you're back to needing min Core. I mean battleline.

As a first observation, this means that they've possibly shot themselves in the foot again with all the miniatures they've removed. There seem to be a lot of 'battleline' units that simply aren't available from official GW-affiliated sources nowadays - if someone was to come into the hobby new and want to fill out their 'battleline' without having to stick to the narrow list of units that are still available, they're going to need to look elsewhere. This is particularly poignant with the formerly-High-Elf microfactions, since they have thematic similarities with each other (for obvious reasons) but as soon as you have more than one, there isn't a currently-available battleline you can take that fits in with them visually (the closest are the former Wood Elf and Dark Elf core, and obviously they have different aesthetics) which, again, may push players to look elsewhere for models that do, even if they say they 'count as' the same units as the Wood and Dark Elf models represent. For players who aren't going to be participating in tournaments where use of GW minis is enforced, this might mean going to the competitors.

As a second observation... there seem to be quite a few units which, in principle, could fit into multiple groups. At least in the medium term, it would probably help those microfactions work a lot better if there were units that were designated as being cross-factional. For instance, the Bleakswords/Darkshards/Dreadspears could be made available to other Darkling factions, so that someone, for instance, could add Darkshards to an Order Serpentis force without it suddenly becoming a generic Order force that no longer has Drakespawn Knights as battleline.

On the whole, though, I expect they just weren't considering the microfactions when the Compendium was made... or there's some note in there I missed that accounts for this.


Top
 Profile  
Reply with quote  
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 9 posts ] 

All times are UTC


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 1 guest


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group