Pinned The Marshall's Handbook: 2.0 FAQ and Rules Questions

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  • The Marshall's Handbook: 2.0 FAQ and Rules Questions

    Generals of the Empire,

    The day is finally here when we get our hands on the Empire of Sonnstahl army book for 2.0.

    the-ninth-age.com/news/index.p…-an-elf-walk-in-to-a-bar/

    I am sure there will be a lot of questions around both the content of the book, especially the changes, and advice from all players for how it can be used.

    Please use the thread below to ask any questions you have and point out any spelling or gramatical errors in the book.

    I will also be releasing a number of posts alongside this one to get conversations going around specific areas of the book. I will post links to each of these below.

    The Marshall's Handbook I: Heavy Infantry
    The Marshall's Handbook II: Choosing a General
    The Marshall's Handbook III: Choice of Artillery
    The Marshall's Handbook IV: How to build your Mages
    The Marshall's Handbook V: Sunna's Fury

    Please remember that this is a public beta testing phase of the book and the rules set. So please try as much of the book as you can and provide feedback in the thread linked below.

    The Imperial Records Office: Feedback Posting and Voting

    Discuss feedback (both positive and negative) in the threads below.

    The Imperial Complaints Office: Feedback Thread
    The Imperial Sycophancy Office: Positive Feedback Thread
    Team Wales ETC 2017 - Beast Herds
    Team Scotland ETC 2018 (Captain) - Beast Herds
    Team England ETC 2019 - Empire

    Twitter - @Fthunder89

    The post was edited 2 times, last by Fthunder ().

  • Jabba wrote:

    Love it.
    Steam Tank now has 2 separate weapons/offensive attributes. One with Grind, one with Impact Hits. Does that mean I can use both Grind and Impact Hits in the same phase?
    Grind and Impacts still cannot be used at the same time. Check in the rulebook for more information.

    Kallstrom wrote:

    Why no greatweapon-wielding knights?

    I was hoping for heavy armor for the heavy infantry, but alas.. ;)
    Please see here for more discussion on GW knights:

    Dispatches from the front X: Things that go bump in the knight

    JLooz wrote:

    I dont see limitations on banner enchantments, does that mean that it is possible to take the same banner on multiple units ?
    Only if they say something like 0-3 in their description. Look in the main rulebook for some examples. No Empire specific ones can be taken more than once.
    Team Wales ETC 2017 - Beast Herds
    Team Scotland ETC 2018 (Captain) - Beast Herds
    Team England ETC 2019 - Empire

    Twitter - @Fthunder89
  • First of all, i'd like to thank you guys for the work on our book, even though the loss of Knightly Orders and Great Weapon Knights hurts, we got so much cool stuff in return, i see so many different possibilities, that i might be another year before i've even properly playtested everything.

    Looks super interesting, cannot wait to actually field light infantry, rockets and generally just loads and loads of infantry!

    Thanks for breaking your backs for us, and giving us all this love!
  • Izomov wrote:

    First of all, i'd like to thank you guys for the work on our book, even though the loss of Knightly Orders and Great Weapon Knights hurts, we got so much cool stuff in return, i see so many different possibilities, that i might be another year before i've even properly playtested everything.

    Looks super interesting, cannot wait to actually field light infantry, rockets and generally just loads and loads of infantry!

    Thanks for breaking your backs for us, and giving us all this love!
    You are very welcome! @DanT did most of the hard work.
    Team Wales ETC 2017 - Beast Herds
    Team Scotland ETC 2018 (Captain) - Beast Herds
    Team England ETC 2019 - Empire

    Twitter - @Fthunder89
  • First off I appreciate the efforts of the design team. I know it is a lot of work and I appreciate the effort. It is always easier to edit or criticize a finished work than it is to write or build it from scratch yourself. That said, here are my thoughts.

    TLDR version is - if you have Less functionality @ same points, it = Nerf
    If EoS is suffering on the power curve (and most arguments I have seen say it is), then why Nerf it?

    I have playtested the new 2.0 BRB and the 2.0 EoS book a few times now and here are some observations;

    The Reiters with pistols really suffer from losing the automatic stand and shoot. I realize that this affects all pistol armed units in the game, but this loss of function was not eased by a reduction in points. Less functionality @ same points = Nerf
    The above comment would also apply to the pistol armed militia, (a unit I didn't test out), since they lost support unit and the stand and shoot rule, for the same points as before. I also realize this unit had become something of a staple in competitive lists and was never meant to be, but still, a Nerf

    The new line of sight rules are a straight up Nerf to Cannons and Mortars, and rockets too I suppose. Since they are standard size, you can't place them on level ground behind your infantry and draw line of sight to enemy infantry. Now they must be exposed to the enemy. The 5pt cost reduction to the cannon really doesn't reflect that... so Less functionality @ same points = Nerf

    The new allowance for a 4th war machine is cool, but with cannon priced at 255pts, you can't take 2 cannons and 2 mortars or volley guns, and be under 900pts (20% of 4500pt) basicly if I want my 2 cannon maximum, and 4 war machines, 1 must be a rocket, and forget about an engineer.
    Has a 25% limit for artillery been considered, or is this 'Working as Intended'? A feature, not a bug?

    The new 3rd rank of firing for a support unit is kind of fun. Lets us shorten up the lines a bit, hunker closer to the command bubble, and the 1pt reduction is welcome.

    The new lore choice(s) are fine. Cosmos is kind of flat, a meh spell lore, but meh has its place. The synergy of the new magic phase with a couple prelates and a wizard or two is actually quite solid. I really like the Hereditary spell. I could always get at least one prayer or spell through by panicking my opponent with a scarrier spell he needed to dispel instead. It was fine. Nothing splashy, but a nice bit of flavour that works for the army.

    The marshall, BSB & general are fine. The prelate with access to plate is nice, as is the inquisitor. Less expensive horses would be better, but they aren't much changed and fit the flavour. The Knight Commander is fine, but without orders he is a lousy choice for general, and the only way to purchase knightly orders. He is straight up a mounted tax on your knights.

    This brings me to my major complaint with the book. The optimal choices are, in my opinion (which you can take with a grain of salt), off kilter? To my mind the empire is an army of core mediocrity (state troops) supported by aristocratic elites (knights), and imperial gunpowder technology, the imperial siege train, and some brave heroes. (My Empire does not include Buff wagons or Chicken knights.)
    However,
    This iteration of the rules kills knights. 48pts for a knight with 1 fewer attacks than the old Knightly Order at 50pts? And that can only be accessed if I buy a rather pricey hero to go with it? Why? Otherwise it is 38 pts for a skill 3 strength 3 human in fabulous armour. For 18pts I get an elite human, on foot, wearing plate, with st 4, and an option for a greatweapon who is a bodyguard.

    What this does to the army is moves effective builds away from core infantry with some elites and support, and inverts the formula. The best builds that use the traditional Infantry/cavalry/artillery combo now have Elite Imperial Guard infantry (I like the HW&shield myself) supported by core idiots on tin-platted horses, and some light infantry support, maybe a 20 man heavy infantry detachment here or there for support. The best build I tested, had 2 35 man IG units with HW/Shield, a Prelate and Marshall in one, and Prelate and BSB in the other. This was supported by 8 man knight units and 15 man light troops units, 2 mortars, a cannon and a couple level 2 wizards. It was playable, I mean everything it could do my opponents could do cheaper/better, but with care, it played very solidly. Bodyguard infantry line in the centre with chaff, chaff hunters and artillery.

    But it did not FEEL like an Empire army. Big units of Elite stubborn infantry hunkered in the middle? where were the 45+ man halberds or spears? Gone. Replaced by elite infantry who have no real competition in the Special category, except for Chicken Knights, (whose flavour and appropriateness for an Empire army we can debate another time.) Why was elite infantry ( and monstrous cavalry) the most points effective solution for an Empire army? I felt very constrained in my options if I was going to compete with a strong list from another book.

    I don't need the Knights to be stubborn, or bodyguard, however I would prefer they not suck, but if for design mandate reasons they can't be elite, then they shouldn't be priced like an elite unit too. For 100pts I can get a chicken knight, with 4 attacks at strength 5, and a 2+ save, and 4 HP at Res 4. For 100pts I can get 2.36 human knights with 4.74 st 3, skill 3 attacks, 2.36 of those at st5 on the charge with a 1+ save, and 2.36HP at res 3. Point for point there is no comparison at all. I know that Cavalry are core and Chicken Knights are Special, but come-on. The old Knightly order at 100pts gave you 2 HP and 4 st 4 attacks and 2 strength 3. A much closer value proposition to the Chicken Knight. Also, i am not even mentioning the loss of GW cav.

    Take from this what you will, it is intended only as constructive criticism to help move the conversation along. What do others think?

    Thanks again to the design team for your efforts and dedication to the project.

    PS I like the design concept on the Steam tank, but didn't get a chance to try it out.
  • spot on @Gaius Marius
    and I still believe; Light infantry should fight and shoot in 3 ranks, FREE command groups for EoS units. Imperial Guards should have weaponmaster and both parent and support, and that halbardiers should wear heavy armor. Brace for impact should be changed to, or there should be an extra order: " Have at THEM!" The unit gain battle focus.
    For Sunna and the Emperor!!
  • Gaius Marius wrote:

    First off I appreciate the efforts of the design team. I know it is a lot of work and I appreciate the effort. It is always easier to edit or criticize a finished work than it is to write or build it from scratch yourself. That said, here are my thoughts.

    TLDR version is - if you have Less functionality @ same points, it = Nerf
    If EoS is suffering on the power curve (and most arguments I have seen say it is), then why Nerf it?

    I have playtested the new 2.0 BRB and the 2.0 EoS book a few times now and here are some observations;

    The Reiters with pistols really suffer from losing the automatic stand and shoot. I realize that this affects all pistol armed units in the game, but this loss of function was not eased by a reduction in points. Less functionality @ same points = Nerf


    Maybe we are using these guys differently, but I am never getting them charged unless I want them to be charged and then at that point I don't care about the stand and shoot as I am clearly using them as chaff at that point.



    The above comment would also apply to the pistol armed militia, (a unit I didn't test out), since they lost support unit and the stand and shoot rule, for the same points as before. I also realize this unit had become something of a staple in competitive lists and was never meant to be, but still, a Nerf

    Yes this unit has eaten a nerf as it was deemed to be overpowered and not in the spirit of what an Empire unit should do.



    The new line of sight rules are a straight up Nerf to Cannons and Mortars, and rockets too I suppose. Since they are standard size, you can't place them on level ground behind your infantry and draw line of sight to enemy infantry. Now they must be exposed to the enemy. The 5pt cost reduction to the cannon really doesn't reflect that... so Less functionality @ same points = Nerf


    Mortars yes. These things target infantry and I agree the new line of site rules hamstring them more than before. I tried to get an upgrade called "imperial spotter" or something like that which could make them tall for line of sight purposes, but no luck. If you feel strongly about this after a few games, please put your thoughts on the mortar in the Imperial Complaints feedback thread.


    I completely disagree with regards to Cannons and Rockets. The new LOS rules are a HUGE buff to them. You take cannons to deal with mounted characters and monsters and you take Rockets to deal with Large Infantry and Large Cavalry. You can see all of these targets just as well as always. However, infantry (pesky elves especially) cannot see you to shoot you. This means they have the same functionality and more longevity = Buff.


    The new allowance for a 4th war machine is cool, but with cannon priced at 255pts, you can't take 2 cannons and 2 mortars or volley guns, and be under 900pts (20% of 4500pt) basicly if I want my 2 cannon maximum, and 4 war machines, 1 must be a rocket, and forget about an engineer.
    Has a 25% limit for artillery been considered, or is this 'Working as Intended'? A feature, not a bug?


    This is absolutely working as intended. Having four war machines that cause D3 or more wounds with S6 or more would be incredibly powerful. Too powerful. We can have four war machines, we couldn't before. = Buff :)


    The new 3rd rank of firing for a support unit is kind of fun. Lets us shorten up the lines a bit, hunker closer to the command bubble, and the 1pt reduction is welcome.


    Agreed. I love this new rule and it is very powerful in a couple of builds where you would expect to see Light Infantry.


    The new lore choice(s) are fine. Cosmos is kind of flat, a meh spell lore, but meh has its place. The synergy of the new magic phase with a couple prelates and a wizard or two is actually quite solid. I really like the Hereditary spell. I could always get at least one prayer or spell through by panicking my opponent with a scarrier spell he needed to dispel instead. It was fine. Nothing splashy, but a nice bit of flavour that works for the army.


    I've agreed with much of what you have said so far, but here we must disagree. Cosmology is, without a shadow of a doubt, one of the top three lores in the game. I would say Alchemy is another one of them. We get both. Go over to the Saurian Ancient forums and read the threads where they are begging to take Cosmology. We are very lucky to have this lore and very lucky that @DanT put across his arguments clearly for why this lore fits our army.


    The marshall, BSB & general are fine. The prelate with access to plate is nice, as is the inquisitor. Less expensive horses would be better, but they aren't much changed and fit the flavour. The Knight Commander is fine, but without orders he is a lousy choice for general, and the only way to purchase knightly orders. He is straight up a mounted tax on your knights.


    I thought this at first too (about the horses), but when including Barding I believe they are the same price as before, or maybe even cheaper. The KC is what he always has been, our only lord that can be truly fighty for a decent price. The fact he can give Knights parent unit rules is also amazing when taking a Great Tactician BSB. Cold Blooded and +1 advance rate Knights. Yes please.


    This brings me to my major complaint with the book. The optimal choices are, in my opinion (which you can take with a grain of salt), off kilter? To my mind the empire is an army of core mediocrity (state troops) supported by aristocratic elites (knights), and imperial gunpowder technology, the imperial siege train, and some brave heroes. (My Empire does not include Buff wagons or Chicken knights.)
    However,
    This iteration of the rules kills knights. 48pts for a knight with 1 fewer attacks than the old Knightly Order at 50pts? And that can only be accessed if I buy a rather pricey hero to go with it? Why? Otherwise it is 38 pts for a skill 3 strength 3 human in fabulous armour. For 18pts I get an elite human, on foot, wearing plate, with st 4, and an option for a greatweapon who is a bodyguard.

    What this does to the army is moves effective builds away from core infantry with some elites and support, and inverts the formula. The best builds that use the traditional Infantry/cavalry/artillery combo now have Elite Imperial Guard infantry (I like the HW&shield myself) supported by core idiots on tin-platted horses, and some light infantry support, maybe a 20 man heavy infantry detachment here or there for support. The best build I tested, had 2 35 man IG units with HW/Shield, a Prelate and Marshall in one, and Prelate and BSB in the other. This was supported by 8 man knight units and 15 man light troops units, 2 mortars, a cannon and a couple level 2 wizards. It was playable, I mean everything it could do my opponents could do cheaper/better, but with care, it played very solidly. Bodyguard infantry line in the centre with chaff, chaff hunters and artillery.

    But it did not FEEL like an Empire army. Big units of Elite stubborn infantry hunkered in the middle? where were the 45+ man halberds or spears? Gone. Replaced by elite infantry who have no real competition in the Special category, except for Chicken Knights, (whose flavour and appropriateness for an Empire army we can debate another time.) Why was elite infantry ( and monstrous cavalry) the most points effective solution for an Empire army? I felt very constrained in my options if I was going to compete with a strong list from another book.


    I wholly disagree with this also. I have tried a number of builds that I feel are very strong. I also do not build my core without 35+ spearmen at the moment. I think they are amazing. My favorite build right now is 35 Spearmen, 12 Handguns, 18 Crossbows, 20 Halberds. Such great synergy with the support rules. I then have a huge block of flagellant crazies and either a block of Imperial Guard or a 4 man Knight of the Sun Griffon unit. However, this could be a Steam Tank I suppose. This is supported by a couple of pieces of artillery, some fast moving Reiter shooting platforms and some characters tying everything together with synergy and magic.


    I don't need the Knights to be stubborn, or bodyguard, however I would prefer they not suck, but if for design mandate reasons they can't be elite, then they shouldn't be priced like an elite unit too. For 100pts I can get a chicken knight, with 4 attacks at strength 5, and a 2+ save, and 4 HP at Res 4.


    What Chicken Knights are you looking at? The ones in my book are HP3, Res4, 2+ save, 3 S5 attacks and 1 S4 attack (S6 on the charge).



    For 100pts I can get 2.36 human knights with 4.74 st 3, skill 3 attacks, 2.36 of those at st5 on the charge with a 1+ save, and 2.36HP at res 3. Point for point there is no comparison at all. I know that Cavalry are core and Chicken Knights are Special, but come-on.


    Core vs Special. That's all I really have to say on this. You cannot compare apples and oranges. When the KoE book drops take a look at their core knights and come back to me and we can talk some more about comparisons.



    The old Knightly order at 100pts gave you 2 HP and 4 st 4 attacks and 2 strength 3. A much closer value proposition to the Chicken Knight. Also, i am not even mentioning the loss of GW cav.

    Take from this what you will, it is intended only as constructive criticism to help move the conversation along. What do others think?


    This is great. I love posts like this and I hope you have taken everything above in the spirit that it is given. One of debate and not one of "OMG SHUT UP YOU ARE SO STUPID", because my intention was absolutely the first one. I think in summary you have strong feelings about the Knights, both the loss of KO's and the loss of GW, Mortars being much worse because of LoS and a few other things. Please take the time to play some games with these and if your feelings turn out to be backed up by gameplay, go over to the feedback thread and write as passionately as you have above and with such good logic, so that I can feed it back to the design team.


    Thanks again to the design team for your efforts and dedication to the project.

    PS I like the design concept on the Steam tank, but didn't get a chance to try it out.
    Some fair points. My replies in red above.
    Team Wales ETC 2017 - Beast Herds
    Team Scotland ETC 2018 (Captain) - Beast Herds
    Team England ETC 2019 - Empire

    Twitter - @Fthunder89
  • The Changing Constant wrote:

    Fthunder wrote:

    Core vs Special. That's all I really have to say on this. You cannot compare apples and oranges. When the KoE book drops take a look at their core knights and come back to me and we can talk some more about comparisons.
    I was under the impression that 9th age as a whole was moving away from the core tax.
    Not that I've been told, but I'm not told much! That would be a rules or balance team question.

    The Changing Constant wrote:

    So can the prelate take the Binding Scroll. IE no more dispell scroll caddy?
    yes indeed
    Team Wales ETC 2017 - Beast Herds
    Team Scotland ETC 2018 (Captain) - Beast Herds
    Team England ETC 2019 - Empire

    Twitter - @Fthunder89
  • @Fthunder Wrote: Mortars yes. These things target infantry and I agree the new line of site rules hamstring them more than before. I tried to get an upgrade called "imperial spotter" or something like that which could make them tall for line of sight purposes, but no luck. If you feel strongly about this after a few games, please put your thoughts on the mortar in the Imperial Complaints feedback thread

    (someone needs to tell me how to quote)

    The spotter is a great idea... in fact one i'd like to see as an Artificer upgrade: Artificer Tower.... War Wagon anyone! :D
  • @Gaius Marius
    As Felix says, you make some fair points. Which isn't to say that I agree with them all :P
    I also agree with him that we need to playtest things.
    EoS more than any other army need to be understood contextually and holistically.

    One thing that made me quite positive though is that I felt the majority of your concerns were about points.
    If this is correct then this is a massive leap forward, and means the task team did its job :)
    BLT are not expecting that we got all of the prices bang on first time around, so if we get enough feedback and the prices get adjusted appropriately over the beta period then I see no reason that the EoS book wouldn't be in a really good place.


    To everyone:
    About "core tax"... this is the subject of discussion internally. Part of the problem is that people disagree about what core tax is and thus whether it exists.
    There is provisionally an understanding that we should ensure that core units are broadly as points efficient as special units, but the full situation is complicated and needs to be the subject of more detailed discussion internally.

    Some really good feedback we could get from you guys is how you feel the core units hold up versus other units in the EoS book point for point.
    People want t9a/RT to simultaneously square, triangle, and icosagon the circle, whilst vehemently attacking it if there are any corners.

    ID blog
    Dan ventures into the lands of smoke and fire

    Basic beginners tactics
    No 'tactics for beginners' thread?
  • thank you Fthunder and DanT. To Dan in particular, yes the only major issue i have is that the loss of Special category Knights. A decent knight at a decent point cost option is now simply gone.if that was returned, maybe with some flavour options for the various Knightly orders, it would help a lot. Otherwise it is mostly a matter of point adjustments. I would like to see some points nudges that acknowledge that EoS basic units are overpriced (my pet theory is that they are costed as though they have permanent access to hatred and a buff) and perhaps shift some of that cost to the providers of the buffs instead.
    Cheers
  • Loosing the special knights is a massive blow, as Gaius says there were decent finally for their points and I just started to use them, Ive never liked the core knights the points in cheap bodies always works out better for me.

    Removing units is just a disappointing way to balance things, remove grail knights from koe and there would be riots :P but us empire players just have to suck it up? slightly unfair :(

    Im going to be more angered than most as ive just spent a small fortune converting them and they aint going to be used as core knights thats for sure, I would rather just proxy the entire army as koe and have them as grail knights :)
    As Magnus did so shall we
  • Hi! I miss GW and special jnights too. I don't mind complete rework on special knights to make them different from chickens (I sometimes play all cavalry army and those bodyguard 2A were usufull there). Moratar is harder to play, yes. But it was near OP (I fielded only 2 of them only because I didn't have 3rd model), so staying in 200pts is kind of balancing it. Definitly need to be playtested.
    And actually, I feel that Empire is more empirish now with all that infantry here and there.

    About Cosmology - even if it's not broken, it's great - cheap spells, strong nukes (2d6 st 4) and buffs (+1S, +1Ws/Bs). It can heal steam tank/griffon too! And you can always swap one of it's spells to additional buff/nuke with liberal magic.