“This is a runebound age, its magic tired and constrained. The dark history of the land is written across its fields and forests in the ragged scars of war…”
–Astarra the Runewitch
For years, the armies of Waiqar the Undying have stayed within their borders, launching only minor raids across the border. But now, a nameless threat stirs within the Mistlands, and legions of undead cross into the realm of Terrinoth under Waiqar’s command! The Daqan Lords have sounded the call to war, and their finest generals lead armies of warriors and golems to take up defensive positions in the border territory of Roth’s Vale. The first battles of the next great war are about to begin.
RuneWars: The Miniatures Game is a two-player miniatures game of battles between the great powers of Terrinoth. In each game, you and your opponent will gather armies of miniatures and lead them into battle—blocks of infantry will maneuver for position, cavalry wings will wheel and slam into a weakened flank, and monstrous rune golems or carrion lancers will smash through formations of lesser warriors. Innovative command tools, two distinct factions, and countless ways to customize your experience combine to offer an unparalleled miniatures gaming experience in RuneWars. Finally, with forty-eight beautifully sculpted, unpainted figures, you’ll be able to paint and customize your armies to bring an entirely unique touch to your games and enter the hobby of miniatures painting!
Issue Your Commands
Rather than commanding a small group of single figures that all move individually, RuneWars invites you to experience war on a grand scale. In every game, you’ll order blocks of figures to march, wheel, shift, and charge into battle, carefully maneuvering your forces to outflank and destroy your foes. Each block of figures is composed of a number of trays that your figures slot into, and as your unit enters battle and takes losses, you’ll remove figures and trays from the unit.
Obviously, maneuvering blocks of infantry, cavalry, and more exotic units marching in step will take both strategy and tactical skill, and to accomplish, this RuneWars offers an innovative command tools that allow you to plan every action your units take.
Every unit in RuneWars has a corresponding command tool, like the one you can see below. These command tools are composed of two parts: an action dial on the left and a modifier dial on the right. At the beginning of each round, you’ll set a command tool for each of your units by choosing an action and a modifier for each unit.
Setting your action dial allows you to choose that unit’s primary action—you may march forward, shift your position, reform to adapt to the tides of battle, execute ranged or melee attacks, or rally your troops in the face of terrifying odds. Even as you choose your action with the action dial, you can adapt to the evolving battle by setting your modifier dial—you may turn a march into a deadly charge, boost your defense, increase the damage or panic caused by your attack, or even gain additional actions. Every unit in RuneWars offers completely different dials for both sides of the command tool, giving them access to different tactics and unique combinations of actions and modifiers. Leading a column of Barony Knights in a thundering charge feels very different from maneuvering your Skeleton Archers into position to rain arrows on your opponent’s units.
The command tool doesn’t just choose your unit’s actions, it also determines each unit’s initiative. Every action has an initiative number in the upper-left corner of the action symbol, and in each round, units are activated in the order of their initiative numbers. You’ll have to carefully consider the initiative associated with each action. You may decide to charge at an enemy unit—but you won’t know if that unit will still be in its current position by the time you activate! For a closer look at the command tool, head over to the RuneWars minisite and keep an eye out for our future previews.
Your command tool offers a variety of actions, but some of the most important involve moving your units around the battlefield. Whether you’re charging into combat or crafting a carefully timed retreat, movement in RuneWars is elegantly handled with fixed maneuver templates rather than using a ruler or measuring tape. For instance, if your Reanimates are marching forward at speed two, you’ll simply align the corresponding movement template with a front corner of your unit, then slide the unit forward until the same corner aligns with the end of the maneuver template, as shown below.
Units move across the battlefield by following the path of movement templates.
As you maneuver across the battlefield, your units will inevitably collide with a block of enemy figures. When this happens, the units immediately square up and close in to melee combat, as shown in the diagram below. If a melee unit is locked in combat with another unit and your chosen action is an attack, you’ll be able to roll combat dice and inflict damage, inspire panic, and trigger special abilities. We’ll take a closer look at movement and combat inRuneWars in future previews!
When two trays meet on the field of battle (as shown on the left), they square up to attack the enemy formation (as shown on the right).
Crafting an Army
Within each game of RuneWars, there are limitless opportunities for creating the perfect army and customizing that army to look and play exactly the way you want. Your starting point for a totally unique army is the two distinct factions included in the game: whether you’re playing as the Daqan Lords or the forces of Waiqar the Undying, you’ll find that the two sides play very differently.
The Daqan Lords are the protectors and rulers of Terrinoth, renowned for the ardor and discipline of their soldiers. Spearmen marching in measured ranks, columns of fully armored mounted knights, and lumbering rune golems animated by magic are commonly found among the forces of the Daqan Lords. Conversely, the legions of Waiqar the Undying inspire dread in all who face them. Reanimates shamble into battle while skeleton archers rain blighted arrows down from the sky—and all the while, fallen warriors rise from the ground and rejoin the ranks of their unit. Some have even seen undead soldiers riding on the backs on carrion worms, spreading disease and corruption with every writhing movement.
The opportunities to customize your game don’t stop when you choose a faction, however. There are almost unlimited ways to carefully tailor your units themselves, by choosing how many trays to include in a unit and what upgrade cards you’ll use. You may sound a Metered March, giving you unparalleled control over where your units end their movement. Or, you may use Master-Crafted Weapons to increase your damage in melee combat.Terrifying Heraldry may panic those who come too close, or a Front Line Rune Golem upgrade card can bring one of these massive constructs into battle alongside lesser figures. Ultimately, RuneWars lets you choose exactly how you want your units to perform by choosing which upgrades to use.
Upgrade cards and unit sizes allow you to customize your army’s mechanics, and you’ll have just as much opportunity to create a unique visual impact for your army by painting your figures. Because all RuneWars figures come unpainted, every army you create will be completely different from your friends’ armies. Although it’s perfectly alright to play the game with unpainted figures, by painting your units and customizing the battlefield, you’ll create a stunning visual experience for you and your opponent to enjoy with every battle. We’ll offer more information on painting your figures, along with in-depth tutorials, as the game comes closer to release.
And of course, the opportunities for customizing your army and the game don’t stop there. With every new game ofRuneWars, you can experience new types of deployment—whether you’re catching your opponent in a pincer movement or your forces are split into the four corners of the battlefield. You’ll also be able to choose unique objectives for every game, rewarding you for flanking your foe, gathering powerful resources from the map, or escorting a chosen unit into the heart of your enemy’s position. Choosing exactly how you’ll deploy your units and what objectives you’ll fight for is a crucial consideration at the beginning of each battle, and we’ll explore this more in a future preview!
Enter an Age of War
The great armies of Terrinoth are marching to war, and soon, you’ll be able to take your place as their commander. Collect your miniatures and prepare your army for battle—RuneWars: The Miniatures Game will be available in the first quarter of 2017.