The Ancient King is dead, his Kingdom in ruins. Who will rise to seize his Throne?
A long time ago, in a land far far away called, France, there was a miniature game named Confrontation. Sadly, it was not meant to be and one of the most beloved miniature lines fell into the darkness of OOP. Thankfully, Cool Mini or Not along with Five Houses, have developed a brand new shining beckon of hope for miniature enthusiasts: Wrath of Kings. Within these hollowed product walls were miniatures from the very same sculptors from the lost era of Confrontation. There was much rejoicing…and super glued fingers.
Alright, all kidding aside, Wrath of Kings is a lot more than just pretty models and is certainly much more than something to be left in the shadows of a now defunked game. Under the hood of this easy to grasp miniature game, is an elegant and rich rule set that puts the player back in control of their game. Couple that with a deep story, you have everything for an excellent game.
Stick around as I go over some of the unique features I think will help Wrath of Kings stand out and find a home in your store. Also, I will go over each House in Wrath of Kings. Pull up a chair, it’s going to be a long one.
Those Who Don’t Know History Are Destined to Repeat It
Before we get into the different armies, we need to know WHY there are 5 armies. What happened to get to this point?
Arikania, a land once cast into a sea of turmoil was wild and untamed. Magic ran rampant across the land. Technology imprisoned even the bravest of man. Then came the ancient and great King. Through his unmatched power and determination, he brought this cruel world under his rule. Bringing order to all of her inhabitants, a time of prosperity flourished. During this time, the ancient king bestowed his powers and culture onto the Scion kings of the world. These Scion kings grew to each have immense power and control; forming whole new societies and Houses from these teachings.
Like all good things, they must come to an end and the Ancient king passed from the world, leaving an empty throne. It did not take the Scion kings long to rise against one another. Years of jealousy and bitterness came to the surface and great wars began once again. Arikania was once again engulfed in turmoil with the, Wrath of Kings.
In the Midst of Chaos, There is Also Opportunity
There are several rules that stand out to me for WoK, for all the right reasons, here are only a few.
- Single roll combat resolution. When you want to make an attack/action against an opposing model; the attack, results and resolution are all achieved in a single roll.
- Inspiring generals. The leaders in your army all bestow a bonus power, Inspiration, to surrounding troops within their Sphere of Influence. Additionally, your army general will bestow a Training skill to ALL models in your army.
- Use your leaders or have them use your army. You have the option to activate just one model at a time or use your leaders to command more models to work together.
- Breaking the enemies Morale. More than just routing your opponent, Morale is a points rating your army will be made up of and determines the win condition. Once a player has no more Morale, they have lost. There are a couple ways to lose Morale: troop loss and objective loss.
- Varrying deployment zones. Instead of just having 1 deployment line, there are 4 (A, B, C & D) deployment zones. Each being 5 inches apart, measuring from your back table edge, forward.
- Personal agendas. Each House have 6 of their own goals they can achieve to bring down their opponents Morale.
Of course there are some things that were borrowed from previous games and there is still much more unique to WoK. The most important thing however, is that the game mechanics are simple and quite approachable to any skill level miniature gamer. People say this all the time but it very much applies: easy to learn, difficult to master.
Seize Your Throne – Stocking Wrath of Kings
There are a lot of hurdles a retail store has when stocking a new miniatures game and CMoN has put some thought into that. Let’s go over a few things WoK does to make it easier on you, the retailer.
- Price point. Per model, WoK is cheap. A starter box is roughly 30 models per House. At $70, that makes each model $2.34 on average. Very affordable.
- Low SKU count. Currently, there are 6 SKUs available for each House. CMoN have packaged some models together, Character boxes come with 3 different leaders in them, instead of having 3 separate SKUs. WoK also combines Specialist models as well, having what would be 2 SKUs in one box. That is a whopping 15 SKUs less this smart packaging saves you on shelf space and that is just on the day 1 SKUs.
- Easy/fast play. This helps greatly when trying to introduce people to a new game. Because of the ease of game play, it also demos well and we all know the power of the demo.
- Simple shelf space. WoK only has 2 different box sizes: Starter Box size and Character Box size. No more playing Tetris with your product to get it all on one shelf.
- Good packaging. Far too often, it is unclear what exactly comes in the box. On the front, artwork of the models inside. On the back, a very clear contents list. That means less time educating your customers on each SKU.
House Goritsi – The Approaching Darkness
In times of war, it really is hard to tell if anyone is “evil”. Unless you are House Goritsi, then it’s you. Vampires and Werewolves make the bulk of these armies but in some instances, more sinister and frightening abominations haunt their ranks. You can be sure, nothing here sparkles in the sunlight.
Hit and run, this is the bread and butter of tactics for House Goritsi. Being the fastest army in the game, they use this speed to get in quickly and strike before the opposition has a chance to. Vampiric dark magic supports the demonic ferocity of the werewolves, controlling the weak willed to do their bidding. With a bit of a glass jaw, they have mastered the art of evasion.
House Hadross – The Rising Tide
Beneath the oceans of Arikania, something sinister has festered. With the passing of the Ancient King, House Hadross strikes against those on the surface. Believing the world is at an end, Hadross seeks to change all on the surface or bring their end. If there ever was a bully, Hadross would be it, waging war on all fronts from their oceanic kingdom.
Thanks to the high durability of their soldiers, Hadross has time to erode away at their enemies until they crumble. Like a riptide, Sevridan will keep their enemies in place as waves of Hadross crash upon enemies. Even if you manage to crack the shell of a Hadross soldier, the fallen will only bolster his remaining brethren’s assault. Slow and steady, Hadross will eventually wash away their enemies.
House Nasier – The Dominate Warrior
House Nasier are above all else, skilled in the ways of war. Ritualistic in their ways of training, some liken House Nasier to a cult; using magic as frequent as force, they may not be wrong. Their spiritual dedication goes hand in hand with their dedication to military training, resulting in the best swordsman in all of Arikania.
Relying on their skill, the Ashman use counter attacks and one-on-one combat to dispatch their enemies. For breaking the enemy lines, Pelgrath use their size to maneuver their foes, helping the Ashman pick them off. When brute force is needed, the Great Horn crashes upon the enemy. Where they lack durability, Nasier more than makes up for it with brutality.
House Shael Han – The Unified Front
The Ancient King may have died but House Shael Han regard his teachings above all else. Shael Han strives for greatness for all of Arikania but only if they can achieve it first. Shael Han favors a diverse regiment of soldiers and not putting all their efforts into one strategy. Arkania will be unified, whether you want it or not; the Ancient King will reign again.
Diverse strategies keep Shael Han’s enemies guessing their next move. Great in numbers but not combat prowess, Shael Han’s soldiers benefit greatly from their leaders presence. This leads to a strong synergistic tactic and will often be encouraged to group their soldiers together to maximize their strength. Strength is in fact, in numbers.
House Teknes – The Wrathful Soldier
The Addannii are perceived as nothing more than tinkerers and mad scientists. This may not be far from the truth. Believing in a better future for man-kind, they strive to achieve a better human race through technology and determination. Avoiding all magic, House Teknes have achieved what others have only hoped for through the use of technical domination.
The old adage, you better make it count, stands truer with the Union Workers of Teknes than others. Just hitting these Teknes soldiers will only fuel their blood lust. The Lineman are not very good at hitting their marks but are excellent at deflecting and countering against enemy attacks. Teknes, will punish those who strike out against them.