|Reinforce and Retaliate
A Preview of the Hammer and Hold and Legions of Darkness Expansions
|Warhammer: Diskwars | Published 16 June 2014|
“Every vale, ford, and copse has seen the blood of warriors spilt, and for each battle paid homage by the minstrel’s lute there are a multitude that lie shrouded in the mists of time.”
–Warhammer, “The Years of Conflict”
The Hammer and Hold and Legions of Darkness expansions will soon add six new races to the brutal battles of Warhammer: Diskwars. They will also allow the four Core Set races to bolster their armies with a slate of new reinforcements and command cards.
Today, we preview the units and command cards these two expansions will offer the Empire, Orcs, Chaos, and High Elves.
With Hammer and Hold, the Empire, the game’s most tactical race, can recruit two new units to field an even more varied army.
Commanders looking to establish a solid defensive perimeter would do well to look toward the Talabecland Halberdiers. For a mere five recruitment points, they boast a highly respectable counter strength of four. If that’s not enough to discourage your opponents from breaking through a line of Talabecland Halberdiers, there’s also the fact that their counter is swift, meaning they’re likely to finish off would-be assailants before they even suffer damage.
Meanwhile, the Empire’s Priest trait becomes significantly more meaningful with the addition of the Warrior Priests and the Shield of Faith command card. Like Luthor Huss, the Empire’s Warrior Priests gain resistant (,) when they’re empowered, and they can benefit from even greater protective blessings with the Shield of Faith command card, which can potentially negate a fatal blow and, instead, remove all damage from the unit. With those kind of protections to inspire them, it’s no wonder these Warrior Priests arrive to battle ready to trample their foes underfoot, and Impact 2 helps them do just that.
The Legions of Darkness expansion allows Orc players to reinforce their armies with hordes of malevolent and cunning Goblins. Though they’re smaller than the Orcs, they’re nonetheless bound to make a huge impact upon the game, some of them quite literally.
At just four recruitment points for a unit with Impact 5, the Goblin Doom Diver offers your Orc army an obvious and lethal punch. Of course, it’s every bit as lethal to your Goblin Doom Diver as it is to your opponent; the Goblin Doom Diver suffers a wound whenever it deals impact damage.
Additionally, to fling your Goblin Doom Divers into battle, you’ll need to field a Doom Diver Catapult. Though this War Machine allows you to deliver some of the game’s hardest-hitting (live) ammunition, it’s also slow and frail, meaning that you’ll want to consider bringing two of them to battle, or carefully protecting the one you’ve got, or bringing two to battle and protecting them both. Fortunately, since a Doom Diver Catapult only costs you five recruitment points, it should be easy enough for you to work it into any flexible Orc army.
Orc players gain even further army-building flexibility from the addition of another Goblin unit, the Night Goblins. Like the Goblin Doom Diver, this Infantry unit costs just four recruitment points, meaning that you can soon expect to see it fielded by those Orc players who want to spend early activations to lure your units into position before bombarding them with impact damage. Moreover, whenever the Night Goblin enters an engagement within short range of another Orc disk (yours or your opponent’s), it can hit just as hard as some larger and more expensive units.
Finally, the command card Brain Bursta supplies your Orc army with more damage potential and instability. Capable of dealing damage to enemy leaders from long range, Brain Bursta can deal as much as five damage… or fizzle completely. It’s the sort of spell that’s well-suited to an aggressive army, like the Orcs, that’s willing to take some risks in pursuit of power and destruction.
Only one of the two new Daemonic Chaos units from Legions of Darkness incorporates the expansion’s new fear keyword, but both are likely to cause fear in your opponents.
Because Screamers only have an attack strength of three and three movement, it’s possible your opponent may overlook their potential effectiveness… once. However, if your opponent ever ignores the threat that your Screamers pose, he’ll likely learn his lesson when they pin a foe and use their fear ability to reduce its counter strength to “1.” Used wisely, your Screamers can paralyze an enemy hero or elite unit with fear and set it up for the killing blow delivered by one of your other units.
You might even deliver that killing blow with your Daemonettes. At just six recruitment points, the Daemonettes pair four attack strength with the swift keyword. That’s the sort of perfect combination that pleases even the Chaos God, Slaanesh. However, your Daemonettes’ perfect attack comes at a cost, and in this case, the cost is fragility. With just three toughness, Daemonettes are vulnerable to quick demises, so you’ll want to lure your opponents into position before sending your Daemonettes into the fray.
Meanwhile, in the event that your opponent would counter your ambitions by fielding a unit immune to fear or one with a swift counter, the Chaos command card Acquiescence can squelch that unit’s text for a round. When you want your opponent’s unit to die, this command card offers an excellent means to strip away irritating abilities or defenses.
In a game as brutal and bloody as Warhammer: Diskwars, it’s possible that even a race as skilled at defense as the High Elves may, at times, need to adopt a more offensive stance. To that end, Hammer and Hold introduces two new High Elf units capable of making early, decisive strikes against their enemies.
The Lothern Sea Guard enters the game as the least expensive High Elf unit at just five recruitment points. For those points, they offer modest attack and counter strengths, but they enhance those with five movement, a ranged missile attack, and the mobile keyword. This combination of offensive and defensive abilities make the Lothern Sea Guard an excellent fit for a range of strategies and offers your army good tactical versatility as the tides of battle shift one way or the other.
Less versatile, but certainly no less powerful, are the Silver Helms, which can race into battle from distance and cut down their foes with Impact 3, and five swift attack strength. Of course, such martial prowess is bound to make them an early target, but you can use that to your advantage. You’ll get two copies of each non-unique medium disk in Hammer and Hold, meaning that when one Silver Helms unit draws a crowd, the other can easily ride over to support it. Moreover, because your Silver Helms have five toughness, it ride away from even some of the deadliest engagements.
Finally, the High Elves gain the ability to call upon some timely healing with their new command card, Isha’s Mercy.
There Will Be War. There Will Be Blood.
Six new races will soon arrive to Warhammer: Diskwars, and its battlefields will drown in blood. The races from the Core Set may need to adjust their strategies to survive their skirmishes with these new foes, and if their armies look to adapt, they’ll find plenty of potential recruits in Hammer and Hold and Legions of Darkness.
The Old World will quake. Muster your armies. The Hammer and Hold and Legions of Darkness expansions arrive at retailers everywhere later this month!
Warhammer: Diskwars is an epic game of heroes, armies, and brutal warfare for 2 - 4 players. At the game's heart art its disks, which represent heroes and units from the Old World. These maneuver across the battlefield by flipping end over end, and if any two disks overlap at the end of the round, they must fight!