|Warhammer: Invasion The Card Game | Published 05 August 2009|
The Empire Strikes Forward
By Eric M. Lang
Welcome to the first of four articles about the races found in the Warhammer: Invasion Core set. Each of the races is designed to have a unique overall feel, as well as having multiple paths to victory.
The winter had been long, and food stores were running light. Farmers had just started planting crops, and hope was starting to spring up. The scouting forces had barely come over the ridge when the alarm sounded. Hope was in short supply after the black riders appeared. Behind them marched an army of Chaos, full of warriors and beasts all dedicated to foul gods. They arrayed themselves before us, and we knew we were doomed.
Then the forces of the Elector Count of Middenheim showed up, and gave our men a reason to have faith. Now we can take the fight to them. Now we will be able to be the rock they break against. Now they will know what it means to fight the forces of the Empire.
We shall be victorious in the name of Sigmar!
As expert strategists, the Empire is all about outwitting their opponents. There are multiple ways in which this can be accomplished.
Normally, when you play a unit or support card, you have to choose which zone it goes into, and there it remains for the duration of the game. Unlike any other race, the Empire has many ways to circumvent this limitation and move their cards in between zones. Some cards will do this overtly, by having the ability printed right on them, others (like tactics which can be played almost any time) will be a surprise.
If you are the type of player that enjoys making clever game-breaking moves, or enjoy keeping your opponents on edge because they never know where your cards will end up, this aspect of the Empire will appeal to you greatly.
Every race has many ways to burn down your opponent’s Capital and increase their own martial prowess, but only the forces of Order (Empire and Dwarfs) have good tools to defend themselves. Both do it in very different ways.
The Empire uses something I like to call “offensive defense,” where they destroy your opponent in different ways while they are being attacked. The Reiksguard Knights, for example, have the awesome keyword Counterstrike, which hits attacking units before combat starts … and that’s in addition to the damage they normally deal. Since units are always eligible to defend, you don’t have to give up any other actions in order to put them to use.
As the Empire, you can also defend yourself by using their arsenal of damage redirection effects. If you complete the quest Defend the Border, for example, you can bounce the first damage to your Capital each turn right back at your opponent! And unless your opponent just stops attacking you (which is almost never a wise move), they are going to feel the pain turn after turn.
Another tool in the Empire’s arsenal is the ability to protect their own cards from harm in a number of ways. Some of them, like the awesomely powerful Church of Sigmar, sit in your kingdom and make it more difficult for your opponents to do anything to your units. This includes playing tactic cards, using card abilities … anything.
Not all protective effects are quite so obvious. Others include redirecting your opponents’ attacks, copying card effects, or even temporarily denying units the ability to participate in the battlefield. The arsenal is impressive.
The Empire is an extremely diverse race, with a flavor I like to call “brutal subtlety.” Your opponent sometimes won’t even know what hit them, but the smoking ruin of their Capital is unmistakable evidence of the Empires power.
Join me next time to feel the burn of Chaos!
Warhammer Invasion The Card Game is a card game, by Eric M. Lang, in which 2 players develop their kingdoms and lay waste to their foes. Each side is comprised of either the forces of Order -Dwarfs, High Elves, Empire- or the forces of Destruction -Orcs, Chaos, Dark Elves- as they seek to extend their empire to include the entire Old World.
I really like these previews of the game. Still waiting for the release over here in the uk, but just reading these helps you get a feel for how the game will play. I love the development work that has gone into making each army play differently. Whether FFG can manage to make that work with all 13 or so different armies within the mechanics of the core game I don't know.
I like the idea that the empire can move their troops from one area to another, that make them so versatile!
Very nice. And discipline/manoeuvres/advanced tactics/combined arms does suit the Empire nicely.
That first strike thingy would be great fun for Bretonnians too.
In any case i'm above all curiosu for Chaos and the Dark Elves.
Game looks very fun. Any word on release date?
I need this TCG like fat kids need cake...
I mean, I don't really need it, and I really shouldn't have it so that I can save money but I know I'm going to get it anyway.
Hmmm.... seems like that the Empire will be a force that shouldn't be underestimated.
But I'm sure thats nothing against the powers of chaos... or so I do hope! ;o)
Hello I've one question in the text above we reads:
"...the awesome keyword Counterstrike, which hits attacking units before combat starts "
but on card we can see not before combat starts but immediately after defending. I know that I'm don't have full version of rules but is that a mistake?
Very cool! I wish we had an idea how combat works so I could gauge the units we're seeing.
Reiksguard Knights look sweet, but I'm waiting for an article about dwarfs.
If the game play is even half as good as the artwork this will be a great game!
Oh wow cool, looks like the Empire are a good control race. Didn't expect that kind of gameplay from them, but it's a good surprise. :)