Ten Cool Things to do in the Age of Sigmar

I hate the ‘ten things’ clickbait you see over the Internet. You know the kind of thing, ten celebrities who have turned minging, or ten banned films you cannot watch.

But yeah, I click on them sometimes, in the vain hope something interesting will be on the other side.

Hopefully, this will be of interest. A list of ten random things that you may find very cool to do in Age of Sigmar, in no particular order.

 

1. Create a Unique Force Not Possible Before

In days gone by, you were locked into a single army list, with the possibility of using ally rules to bring in a small detachment of something else – but that rarely happened, as there was always the whiff that someone using allies was trying to get round a weakness in their army.

Power gaming is, of course, meaningless in most Age of Sigmar battles, so that is the first barrier to go.

However, there is a much larger one – no army lists. You really can take what you like in your force in Age of Sigmar and while most people prefer to limit themselves to a single Grand Alliance, there is no reason to do so. This means you can come up with some really unique forces.

One I saw on the Internet was a ‘haunted wood’ force, based around the Sylvaneth but with Spirit Hosts added to represent, well, faeries for want of a better word.

Another I have seen someone come up with was a force of Free Peoples (whether you go Empire or Bretonnian is up to you) whose wizard was dabbling in the dark arts – specifically, necromancy. So, add a Necromancer to a Free Peoples force and have some Skeletons or Zombies on stand by; not deployed at the start of a battle but raised while you fight.

You night try Aelfs who have gotten themselves far too close to Slaanesh, Ogor mercenaries joining, well, anyone, or maybe a Dragon who is leading a force of all things reptilian.

Give your imagination free reign, and see what you can come up with!

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2. Play Hero Deathmatch

Got a bunch of mates and fancy a quick, but bloody and fun game? Play hero deathmatch!

You all select a single Hero from whichever army takes your fancy, and then fight until there is only one left!

If you are boring (!), you may stipulate a limit (say, 5 Wounds maximum) but if there are a few of you present, try playing with no limits. Sure, someone may bring Archaon or Nagash, but you will find everyone else quickly gangs up against him, making for a more level playing field. And just imagine the glory if your hero is the one to bring Archaon down!

A variant of this is to play King of the Hill, where you place a tall piece of scenery and make the victory condition to be the lone hero standing at the top of it after a certain time (whether you make it a number of minutes or number of rounds, doesn’t really matter which).

This kind of deathmatch game is really quick to play, plus it allows you to pull out heroes you might not use too often (just how good would Festus the Leechlord be, eh?). It is also very fast-paced, a lot of fun, doesn’t take long, and there are always backstabbing shenanigans as players make alliances with one another, then break them just as quickly!

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3. Use Dungeon Floor Plans

There is nothing in Age of Sigmar that says you need to play on a standard gaming table. If you have any dungeon floor plan tiles (and you can pick these up really cheap on eBay), lay them down and have an underground fight!

This will suit small forces (perhaps no more than 20 models or so) and small unit sizes, but you will find your battles take a completely different tone as bottlenecks are created and lone heroes try to fight their way clear of crowded corridors and caverns!

If you are feeling particularly creative, try putting together a Time of War sheet to handle dimly lit conditions, damp passageways and low ceilings.

If you want to take it a step further, add in rules for random monster encounters and have one force comprised of just four Heroes on foot – this will give you a bona fide dungeon bash game! If the Heroes achieve their objectives, give then a roll on a Triumph table for the next one, reflecting their accrued experience and treasure.

 

4. Have a Massive Dogfight

If you don’t fancy going underground, how about soaring high above it? Clear your table of terrain, throw down a blue blanket and have yourself a dogfight that will blacken the skies!

Only flying units will be present, of course, so dust off your Demigryphs, give a shout to your Plague Drones, and put feathered cloaks on your Skink Priests.

Things are a bit more fluid in the air, so try increasing pile-in ranges to 6″ and watch your airborne units dance around each other.

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5. Collect Lots of Small Forces Rather Than One Big One

This is one I am very guilty of. While playing Fantasy Battle, I managed to accrue around 8,000 points of High Elves and in Warhammer 40,000 I was giving the entire chapter of Dark Angels a serious go.

However, you can approach things differently in Age of Sigmar. There is no requirement to build blocks of 40, 50 or 60 core troops before getting to the good stuff. Instead, just have 10 or 20 ‘core’ troops, add whatever you like in terms of Heroes and special units – and then move on to another force!

What you have created will be perfectly viable for a great many battles and you will have enough forces to gain many different perspectives of the Mortal Realms, possibly spending less money than you would have done on your mega-army.

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6. Become a Games Master

Age of Sigmar has no need of a third party Games Master or Referee – but there is no reason you cannot add one for more fun!

If a Games Master is present, you can easily add a ‘fog of war’ element to any game, with the two players only knowing a fraction of the Battleplan when they start. The Games Master can introduce new victory conditions as the game unfolds (or alter them completely!), announce special events that are triggered when, say, a unit moves too close to a specific piece of scenery, or even bring a new (but much smaller) force to the battlefield, perhaps the true owners of the territory who are angry that they have been invaded!

 

7. Create a New Warscroll

Here is something that may take a moment to digest – there is no such thing as an overpowered unit in Age of Sigmar. You could have a model with a 1+ save that also ignores mortal wounds on a D6 roll of 4+, all the while dishing out D6 mortal wounds to every unit within 12″ automatically – and, given the right scenario and opposing force, it may be perfectly acceptable.

This means you can create your own Warscrolls.

Go ahead. Come up with a really cool idea for a unit, put the models together and then create a Warscroll. There is no need to make it the killiest thing that ever stalked a battlefield – it just needs to be interesting.

A good place to start is to create your own unique Hero or perhaps, if you have the models, revisit some of the old Regiments of Renown or Dogs of War units that Games Workshop have produced in the past. Who would not want to see Lumpin Croop and his Halflings take their place on the battlefield, or perhaps even Scarloc’s Wood Elf Archers (if you are old enough to remember those!).

You can really go to town here, and create a unit that will be truly memorable. Just follow the Golden Rule: Create a Warscroll because you want to make an interesting unit, not because you want to crush everything in your path.

Warscroll

 

8. Create Your Own Corner of the Realms

We do not yet know whether the Mortal Realms are truly infinite but it does seem that, to all intents and purposes, they are at the moment.

So, create your own little corner in which to fight your battles.

Grab yourself a blank sheet of paper, pick a Realm, and start sketching out terrain. Add some cities and fortresses. Figure out who lives there, and who they are friends with. Who are their leaders? Who do they most hate? What do they eat, and who do they trade with?

If you have run RPGs in the past, this will be right up your street but I would encourage anyone to give it a go. If you fancy doing this with training wheels to begin with, take a look at some of the area maps in the Age of Sigmar campaign books, then pick a place that is just mentioned but not detailed in the text – then add the details yourself.

This, incidentally, is exactly what the designers at GW want you to do when they add those extra places – they are intended to fire your imagination and get you creating your own games!

Above all, remember the Mortal Realms are truly fantastic and mythical, so there is no need to limit yourself to a fantasy version of medieval Europe. We have already seen lakes of boiling blood, floating islands, gravity-and-time warping mini-worlds… This is an area where you can really unleash your imagination.

 

9. Play Through the Official Campaign Storyline

There is a core storyline line running through Age of Sigmar, beginning with the starter set and carrying on with the big campaign hardbacks. And here is the secret… it is actually quite good.

If you are of a mind (quite possibly a demented one, as you will see), play through each of the Battleplans in these books, in sequence, collecting and painting each force required as you go.

I warn you (and I speak from experience!), you will be looking at a lot of models by the time you get to the end of Quest for Ghal Maraz. However, you will also have the core of several forces (see Point 5 above), giving you a truly varied Warhammer experience.

You will also be on the cutting edge of the Age of Sigmar storyline, and have plenty of opportunities to create your own twists and turns, watching your own heroes rise and fall alongside the Big Names such as Gardus and Lord Khul.

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10. Create Your Own Campaign

With all that under your belt, you will be ready to create your own storyline in the Mortal Realms, with your own Battleplans and own Time of War sheets – and perhaps your own Warscrolls as well. Age of Sigmar is a true toolbox system, which you can pick and choose from, or add to, shaping it to be the game you want.

There are many different ways to approach a campaign, but a good start is to do something similar to the campaign books Games Workshiop have produced. Draft the outline of a story revolving around a few characters and their forces, create Battleplans to enact their conflicts, and then take the war to the tabletop for something that is truly your own.

Campaign

Well, that would be my list of 10 Cool Things to do in the Age of Sigmar. What are yours?

 

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18 Responses to “Ten Cool Things to do in the Age of Sigmar”

  1. Wulfenson Says:

    Nice suggestions !
    I must admit that I am found of the point 5 : Collect Lots of Small Forces Rather Than One Big One
    More models variety is much more fun to paint, and it bring a lot of colours on the table 🙂

  2. Nick Says:

    I really agree with number five as well. Lothern Sea Guard, Dark Elf Corsairs, Dwarf Slayer Pirates, Norse Marauders…

  3. er84 Says:

    All points are good, but 5 and 9 are my definite ways to play AoS !

  4. Circus of Paint Says:

    I didn’t know you weren’t restricted to one Grand Alliance within an army.

    Perhaps time to me to look at the other options that aren’t Chaos!

  5. amysrevenge Says:

    Nice article. I’m already working on some custom Warscrolls. 🙂

  6. Bryan Says:

    What is so hilarious? I think all these are great points. I am making warscrolls for all my warmachine and Hordes armies and looking forward to using them in AOS. Already seen people using Zulu’s in the game so you can use any models out there.

  7. Payce Says:

    Reblogged this on LD10 and commented:
    Some absolutely excellent ideas here, showcasing just how well Age of Sigmar fits both casual and dedicated gamers and collectors alike.

  8. Scoutbike Says:

    They aren’t unique to AOS, but AOS makes this sort of gaming the norm, and the rules lend themselves very well to adaptability and flexibility.
    Whereas 8th edition doesn’t. Despite 8th always saying “do whatever you want”, for the most part no-one ever did. And the rules there are restrictive.
    8th encouraged antisocial power gaming, minmaxing and screwing over your opponent over fractions of inches. Just look at all the angle finders, laser pointers and charge arc templates that became a staple of any tournament gamer.

    Age of Sigmar does away with all that crap, and makes a fun game that both players can enjoy.
    Basement dwelling sun dodgers don’t like this, and would prefer a return to holding their arms around their special toys, spending their evenings figuring out the next list that abuses the rules without breaking them, and generally frustrating anyone they play against.

  9. James Chalmers Says:

    This is a great list! Totally agree on point 5, I’ve started so many little forces for Age of Sigmar it’s great, there’s no pressure of painting a full block of 40 Empire troops just for one bit of core of a larger army.

    With the Grand Alliances there’s definitely a great pick and mix feel, I’m already considering a Bret and Empire Free People combined army as my next project.

  10. Lentoon Says:

    Couldn’t you do all of that in war hammer fantasy? With the permission of your opponent – which you’d need to do any of this in AoS. It’s kind of a list of “use your imagination”! Which is great, but why would you need to change systems to just… Be a little more creative with how you play the game?

    • altsain Says:

      I haven’t suggested you change systems – if I were playing 40k or Judge Dredd right now, I might be posting similar things about them.

      Just to be clear, I am not saying other games are bad or you cannot do like-minded things with them. All I am saying is ‘hey, try this in AoS.’

      Nothing else…

      • Lentoon Says:

        Oh no I didn’t think you were – it’s more that you could already do these things in any system, so it would make a cool “here’s ten cool things you can do to spice up your war games”. In fact, it’s still kind of hard to do this stuff with AoS, harder than it is with, say, 40k or warmachine, or epic or anything with an internal “balancing” mechanism.

  11. altsain Says:

    Maybe at some point I will. Never thought about doing ‘requests’ here, but might be worth it, if there was interest.

    Would prefer to make things game-specific though. Just find it a bit more interesting for myself (which is, at the end of the day, why this blog exists!).

  12. Zaramuskharaz Says:

    Frankly speaking, your blog is what making me HUGELY interested into giving Age of Sigmar another go. I have been colecting Chaos Dwarves for some time [Zharr Goroth!] and now I’d love to try fielding all the cool stuff through the system, while previously I have been drawn to keep at Fantasy or Kings of War. It’s curious, really. I love the freedom afforded by the game.

  13. Byron Loxley Says:

    This is very cool! Absolutely love these ideas!
    An extra idea for those who love AoS rules but do 40k is write warscrolls for your 40k stuff then use AoS system. So much faster gameplay!

  14. Kaelo Says:

    Where can I get these blank Warscrolls please? 🙂


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