T9A: Grand Companies

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    • T9A: Grand Companies

      Please see the thread here for background: Brainstorming Thread

      Here's a synopsis of the synopsis from the opening post of that thread for those who don't know what's going on and who are too lazy to look:

      Dan wrote:

      So, in short:

      -No official Iron Crowns army book will be coming for at least a few years.
      -The official T9A stance discouraging a homebrew mercenary faction has been reversed.

      And if even that was too much to read, in plain English:

      We are being encouraged by the T9A to make a homebrew mercenary book

      Now, along with this news come a few incredibly important caveats:

      1. No guarantees are being made that a homebrew book will be given any kind of formal or official recognition like the Asklander's book.
      2. No guarantees are being made that any of the content used in the mercenary book will ever make it to an Iron Crowns book.
      3. No guarantees of any kind are being made.
      4. See point three. Then reread it.
      5. The only official guidance being given is that we do not use the term "Iron Crowns".

      In the brainstorming thread we decided on a council of 12 people to represent the community, voted on a army name, briefly discussed how we'll be handling background, and voted on the arm'y strengths and weaknesses. To recap:

      1. The army will be named Grand Companies
      2. Background will be developed after/simultaneously with rules, not prioritized.
      3. Army strengths will be: high WS/BS, strong unit champions, diverse equipment options, and unit specialization
      4. Army weaknesses will be: poor army synergy, lack of access to special saves, and poor magical support

      That gives us a solid foundation and a set of guidelines to work within as we move forward.

      To keep things focused and on-track I recommend we restrict our dialogue to the following right now:

      1. Army special rules
      2. Humans only or mixed races

      Once we vote on those we can move forward to discuss what the army list will look like, which will probably begin in the form of a massive list of everyone's ideas and slowly whittling that down to a more feasible list (for instance, multiple rounds of "vote for your least favorite unit on this list"). Once we have a workable list of units in the army we can begin going through and discussing statlines, point costs, and special rules, and then finally going through and creating things like magic items before giving one final "happy/not happy" vote for each individual unit before we push the book out for playtesting. After a month or two of playtesting we'll assemble feedback, vote again on any changes based on that feedback, and then ultimately push the book out for final release.


      T9A: Grand Companies
      Progress as of 6/18/2018

      Army strengths will be: high WS/BS, strong unit champions, diverse equipment options, and unit specialization
      Army weaknesses will be: poor army synergy, lack of access to special saves, and poor magical support

      One model in the army must be nominated as the Paymaster. The Paymaster counts as a BSB, and all friendly units have Bodyguard (Paymaster).

      If the paymaster is removed as a casualty, all friendly units must immediately make a Discipline Test. For every point the test is failed by, the unit immediately takes a wound.

      Special Equipment

      Tower Shield: Units equipped gain +2 armor against ranged.

      Pike: Attacks made with a Pike gain Fight in Extra Rank (2), Armour Penetration +1 but suffer a -1 Fight in Extra Rank when charging. In the first Round of Combat after being charged in the front, Pikes strike at Initiative Step 10 prior to Impact Hits being resolved, may only make 1 attack per round and gain an additional +2 Armour Penetration if it is not Engaged either in their Flank or Rear Facing. A model using this weapon cannot simultaneously use a Shield against Close Combat Attacks.

      Light Crossbow: Range 16”, Shot 1, Strength 4, Armour Piercing 0, Quick to Fire.
      When shooting from Short Range, the Armour Piercing is set to 1.

      Merchant Prince
      Mercenary Commander
      Guild Assassin


      M4 OS4/DS4 S3 T3 A1 I3 W1 Dis8
      Heavy Armor, Pike

      M4 OS3/DS3 S3 T3 A1 I3 W1 Dis8
      Light Armor, Crossbow
      May purchase Heavy Armor, Tower Shields

      M4 OS4/DS4 S4 T3 A1 I3 W1 Dis8
      Heavy Armor, Shield, Warhorse
      May purchase Barding, Great Weapon, Lance, Paired Weapons

      M4 OS4/DS4 S3 T3 A1 I4 W1 Dis8
      Skirmish, Thrown Weapons, Paired Weapons
      May purchase Pistols, Vanguard

      M4 OS3/DS3 S3 T3 A1 I3 W1 Dis7
      Light Armor, Paired Weapons
      May purchase Heavy Armor, Shields, Thrown Weapons, Great Weapons, Spears

      *Character affiliation upgrade to one unit of another race in Core.


      Steel Guard
      M4 OS5/DS5 S4 T3 A1 I4 Dis9
      Halberds, Heavy Armor, Shields, Bodyguard, Power of Gold

      Power of Gold: Battle Focus. In addition, a Paymaster joined to this unit gains Stand Behind.

      M8 OS3/DS3 S3 T3 A1 I3 Dis8
      Horse, Light Crossbows (4+), Light Troop
      May purchase Light Armor, Shields, Light Lance

      May swap horses for Fly (8) and gain "Light Bomb"

      Light Bomb: Sweeping Attack, Shot 1,Str 4, AP1

      Pit Fighters
      M5 OS5/DS4 S4 T4 A2 I4 Dis8
      Weaponmaster, Light Armor, Paired Weapons, Shields, Spears, Nets (distracting)
      May Skirmish

      M5 OS4/DS4 S3 T4 A1 I3 Dis8
      Ambush, Light Armor, Shields, Throwing weapons

      Adventuring Party
      Thieves party
      M6 OS4/DS3 S3 T4 A3 I5 Dis7 Wounds : 4,
      AS : 5+, poisoned attack, ambush, light Crossbow (3+)

      "Badass" party
      M4 OS5/DS4 S4 T4 A3 I4 Dis9 [i]Wounds : 4,
      AS: 3+, Lethal Strike, Stubborn, Magical Attack

      Wizard party
      M5 OS2/DS2 S3 T4 A3 I3 Dis8 Wounds : 4
      Count as a Master wizard with 2 predefined spells (Fireball and a support spell)


      Dwarven Oathbreakers
      M3/9 OS4/DS4 S3 T4 A1 I3 Dis9
      Heavy Armor, Shieldwall, Sturdy
      May purchase: Great Weapons, Shields, Paired Weapons, Pistols, Crossbows, Throwing Weapons (5+), Flintock Axe (4+)
      May upgrade to Skirmishers

      Elven Exiles
      M5 OS4/DS4 S3 T3 A1 I5 Dis8
      Light Armor, Skirmisher, Quick to Fire, Hunter
      May Purchase: Great Weapons, Halberds, Shields, Spears, Paired Weapons, Bows
      May upgrade to Scouts
      Hunter: During spell selection phase, mark ONE enemy unit as "target". Every unit with Hunter rule gain +1 to wounds against target.

      Halfling Poachers
      M4 OS2/DS2 S2 T3 A1 I3 Dis7
      Light Armor, Hard Target, Distracting, Strider (Forest)
      May Purchase: Shields, Paired Weapons, Bows, Thrown Weapons
      May upgrade to Scouts/Skirmishers

      Mercenary Ogres
      M6 OS4/DS4 S4 T4 A3 I3 Dis8 W3
      May purchase (2max): Heavy Armour (Gain Distracting), Shield (Gain Magic Resistance 2), Paired weapon (Gain Battle Focus), Brace of Ogre Pistols (Gain Accurate), Great Weapon (Grain Hatred), Halberd (Gain Swiftride)
      Fearless, Impact Hit (1), Light armor, Scoring



      Soldier M4 OS4/DS4 S4 T3 A1 I4 Dis8

      Champion M4 OS5/DS5 S4 T3 A2 I4 Dis8
      Ogre M6 OS3/DS3 S4 T4 A3 I3 Dis7

      Men: Crossbow, pike, heavy armor, shield. Can purchase halberd. The champion can purchase enchantments up to XXXpts. The standard can be enchanted for XXX pts.

      Ogres: heavy armor, halberd.

      Phalanx tactics: This unit can purchase Ogres the same way as Skinks can purchase Caimans. Ogres fight the same way as Caimans do in Skink unit. The first rank can fire crossbows and switch to pikes in combat.

      M7 OS3/DS3 S5 T5 AP2 A5 I3 HP7 Arm 1 Dis 8
      Can purchase plate armor & Giant crossbow (counts as a bolt thrower which can move & fire)
      -Can purchase warpaint (aegis 5+ vs shooting, 6+ vs melee), giant club (+1 S, +1 AP), Paired weapon
      -Can purchase giant handgun (literally a cannon, S 4[6], AP 0[10], multiple wounds D3, clipped wings)
      Specials Rules:
      Rage, Desertion, We need you big man

      We need you big man:
      If a giant starts his movement in 3 inches of a 'mobily artillery model' then you can remove this model from the battlefield and put it on the battlefield again in maximum 3 inches distant of the giant. The artillery model cannot be further away than 10 inches from the point where it was removed.
      The giant cannot march or shoot this turn if he uses this special rule.

      Beasts of War
      Large Cavalry (50x100) (Unit 1-3)
      M6 OS3/DS3 S5 T5 A4 I3 HP4 Arm 3 (harnessed)
      Rider OS4/DS4 S4 / A2 I3 / / Dis8 (5)
      **Can be ride by character**
      crossbow and halberd
      Can purchase lance, shield
      Can change Halberd to Great Weapon
      Can change Crossbow to handguns
      Special Rules:
      Towering presence (to be confirmed since unit supposed to not be "join")
      Stubborn, Fearless
      Can become (one choice):
      Shock Cavalry: Mov+1/March+2, Impact hits (D3), Devastating Charge (Distracting)
      Behemoths: Impact hit D6, Grinding att D3, Devastating charge (s+1)

      Pay Cart
      War Platform (single unit 0-1)
      M 4/8 HP 4 Res 4 Arm 1
      Crew OS4/DS4 S4 AP1 A3 I4 Dis8
      Warhorse OS3/DS3 S3 A1 I3
      Chassis S5 AP2 (impact hit D3 + 1)
      Heavy Armour, Halberd, Shield
      Special Rules:
      Gold Chest, War treasure, Desertion!
      Gold Chest:
      Can choose one option per turn
      - Pay the enemy: Last one turn, malus 2 initiative for Enemy units in contact with friendly units within 6"
      - Cash in advance: Last one turn, range 12", give swift ride to the target
      - Gold shield: Last one turn, Paycart unit, gain Aegis 4+

      War treasure:
      Can purchase one of this project
      - Electric Project: Range 18", Area (3), Str3 AP3, If enemy unit lose a wound is advance move is reduce by 1 until next player turn
      - Cloud Project: Range 36", Aura 6" from marker, every units within 6" of marker get -2 to shoot or cast spell
      - Grotling Project: Range 24", Summon a Grotling Herd (Base 50x50, M4 OS2/DS2 S2 T2 A5 I2 HP5 Arm 1, Unbreakable, Insignificant)

      Guns for Hire
      Mobile Cannon
      Halfling Catapult

      The post was edited 9 times, last by Dan ().

    • My proposal :

      Mixed races of course ;) ( I think about several human units and one unit of each other race possible)

      Special rules :

      Characters : There is no battle standard bearer in the army

      Paymaster : The general of the army have the paymaster additional rule.
      When the paymaster is killed, all friendly units suffer a -1 Dis malus until the end of the game. Moreover, Each unit not in melee have to pass a Dis test or flee (Nobody will pay them ! :cursing: )

      Company captains
      Each unit champion can but upgraded to Company captain. He gain :
      - One more attack and 1 more wound (if you add champion + captain bonuses, the mini gain +2 Att and +1wound)
      - 50 pts of special equipment allowance (In order to prevent easy kill)
      - Once per game, he give the possibility to make a Dis re roll (like bsb) for his own unit

      More to come about our special weaponry...

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Mirdhynn ().

    • Yes, me too, i think that with mixed races we could have more options also in the development of the AB. However im not a fan of "put all inside, shake it and see what is coming". In my opinion we should decide 2 other races to put inside, to make 1/2 unit for each other races, just like kroxigor, skinks and sauros in the SA book.

      I like a lot the special rules posted from Mirdhynn and luckily i had thought quite the same things, maybe i would not give to all the captains the rule of reroll ld test like bsb, i would restrict that possibility only to one of them with an upgrade and maybe an aura of 6" and not of one use. And ummm what bonus could have the paymaster ability @Mirdhynn? Increase ld bubble? I agree with you about the "malus" when it is killed, but what about the bonus when he is alive?

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Schebbone ().

    • Schebbone wrote:

      And ummm what bonus could have the paymaster ability @Mirdhynn? Increase ld bubble? I agree with you about the "malus" when it is killed, but what about the bonus when he is alive?
      All Grand companies (human only ?) units have bodyguard (Paymaster) ? (They never flee as the risk to lost the pay is too huge ?)
      But this is perhaps too strong
    • Unit specialisation
      Each unit should have a basic profile and a Fighting speciality rule.
      This Fighting speciality rule give the unit special rule but the unit points are counted in a different army category

      Special weaponry

      Pavese : Shield. Units equipped with pavese gain a permanent soft cover.

      Pike : Spear. The model gain an additionnal FieR. When the unit is charged on front , it gain +4 (+3?) Agi instead of +2

      Army categories

      Base : Mostly humans
      Special : Other races regiments
      Fighting singularity : Regiment which have taken the Fighting speciality rule
      Looters : light cav, skirmishers etc

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Mirdhynn ().

    • I agree with Mirdhynn idea of army composition.
      Strongly disagree with mixed races, or you make them one of a kind for every unit or you'll see an elven or orchish army with artillery. Not funny neither sense. Also many units could fix AW.
      About Pike special rule i suggest mine: instead of ton of agility enemies get a hit for every model charging front of unit. (I set Str 3/4 depending on distance for infantry and 4/5 for cavalry). Pikes are usually made for wall o spears. (And to protect backlines from arrows)
      About champions i suggest a Character halfway between hero and infantrymen (like WS 5 2HP &Att Dis higher but only for unit. 75pts items)

      Pavide in ratflok book gives +3 Armor against shoot. More realistically gives hard cover.

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Kami667 ().

    • Note that I am not 100% sure of one possible unit per non human race
      I agree if we cut some races but which ones?
      in my opinion :
      hbe, koe,se and sa are not races which fit well with mercenaries due to either conception of honour or isolationism
      not sure for beastmen as the background is not the same as before

      Best races to be mercenaries seems to be humans, ogres, dwarf seekers (due to the banishment) and orcs
      Perhaps dread elves and warriors of the dark gods.

      Concerning pikes, I have been tempted to use spear rules + distracting due to this video. The pikemen are almost not reachable and some fighters go below wall of pike to hit opponents.

      The post was edited 5 times, last by Mirdhynn ().

    • Let's do it!

      Of course Mixed Races army but not all races (like Highborn elves)

      Army Structure:

      Characters: Merchant Prince, High Consul, Wizard, **Paymaster, Bretteur, Foreman

      * Merchant Prince and High Consul are high skilled human leader
      * Paymaster is an option that one character must take
      * Bretteur is an assassin
      * Foreman can be any race and can help "control" units with Paymaster (no paymaster panic test 6' aura)
      * In my own book, I created "Arcanist" who use bounds items and not Magic path

      Paymaster pay units, if he is killed panic test to all units not in combat or under "Foreman leadership" (+ I like idea of -1 Dis) -> this is a HUGE weakness.

      * Characters Mounts: Pegasus, Linux (Feline beast), "Carrier" (increase Ld aura), Horse. Boar


      * Core: Pikes, crossbowman, light infantry (weapon human/witch hunters update), cavalry (light/heavy), Bodyguards
      * Special: Ogres, Duelist (skirmisher with guns), Beast pack, halfings, Dwarf, Marauders, Goblin rider
      * Big guys: Leviathan, Beast monster,
      * Elite Companies: flying mans, Bonzino Canon, Halfing catapult, Dragon renegade (units of 1-3 low class dragon), Undead

      Customize your Grand Companies army

      Mercenary fight for gold and glory, after time some units become famous and are renown by their leader.
      * Update Champion to a Captain (each unit will have specific characteristic for Captain) and can have 50pts special equipment + units have more equipment option.
      * Name your unit! Each player can name his/her army and units (homemade Renown units :))

      ** (Option) Select a City State -> bonus & weakness ( example: Leonardo State can have max 3 artillery instead of 2 but can not have goblin and Undead or Borgio State +1Off -1 dis, etc...)

      Specials Rules:

      * Pikes: always -> Spear + 1 rank fight / if front fight +1 Agi + 1PA first turn (+2PA against cavalry)
      * Pavese : Shield. Units equipped with pavese gain a permanent hard cover
      * Targe: +1 Armour close combat only (no shield allow, can use great weapon or paired weapon)
      * Hand crossbow: Shot 2, Distance `12", Str 3, Quick fire
    • how about a rule like "dust to dust"?

      Desertion! if the paymaster dies, each unit without a captain must take a leadership test. if failed , a number of soldier equal to the difference between ld and the score flies from battle (they are mercs after all). Such a huge (but flavourfull) malus can allow a good design space (special abilities / equipment)

      edit : about mixed race, norsemen too could be good mercenaries

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Nrico ().

    • Why everyone thinks Pikes should give Agi... It is heavy and difficult to use. It is made to protect from charges and attack from behind. So Spear with 1 extra rank and a special rule if charged. (Like a hit for every charging model or first round of combat lethal strike)

      Paymaster gives bsb rules. (Maybe can't be hit in close combat as usually doesn't fight.

      A rule if they loose, they are paid to fight not to die. Like never stubborn for ranks or - Dis if they loose fight.

      Races orher than humans should be one of a kind, even if allowed (i still don't think is a good idea) none would hire different race i large number. Maybe a category for other kins?

      Heavy cavalry should not be core. Maybe neither light.

      Mage with bound spells is good.

      A list of possible upgrades (limited for some units) to make them renown regiment by upgrading champion to Venture Captain.
    • I like the distracting rule on pike personally.

      I dont like heavy cavalry in core, it isnt one of our strenght as army. And yes, imho we need a category with other races mercenaries, i thinks it wuold a be a good army organization in that way. Remeber guys, our army strenghts are good ws/bs, we are not a mass army, we are group of high specialized troops.

      pikes but not the classic human weak boy, i think something to "city gate guardian" or "City Phalanx", ws4, heavy armor as must, they will clearly priced in comparison.

      Crossbowmen, maybe with an upgrade (max 20 models) to give them bs4 (aim 3+)

      Heavy swordmen

      Ligth cavarly? (maybe only if you have a general from a particular city state?)


      Heavy cavarly (not particurally good, not our Army S)

      Heavy halberd (hi, papal guard from assassins creed) maybe plate armor s4(5with halberd) ws5, bodyguard general/paymaster? Id like to give the option to customise this troop a lot, with a good range of equipments and also from bonus depending on wich city state chosen.

      A "besiegers" troop with pavise, aim3+ and maybe some particular stronger crossbow
      (or maybe a gun team with a cheiroballista?)

      Some other choices like gladiatorsbetc etc

      Artillery with halfling catapult and bronzinos

      Category with monsters and other races mercenaries troop

      The post was edited 1 time, last by Schebbone ().

    • I really like the captain idea for a renowned regiments feel. Can we implement this?

      I think it could be nice to have the pikemen as weak human militia, but with a captain option they can become spartan-level elites with high stats and a high price. Id say a mercenary army also needs to have some bulk bought with coin.

      I would also really like to see a gladiator unit that could be equipped differently so you can play with murmillo, retiarii and velites :rolleyes: .

      I think Orcs and Goblins should be included as a mercenary race. Maybe 0-1.

      Summary of other ideas that I didnt see yet in this thread
      -a samurai/ninja unit
      -pirates (dwarf pirates anyone?)
      -beast hunters (perhaps some monstrous cavalry)
      -a unit that represents an undead KoE faction
      -russian-like bear cavalry
      - snipers
      - roman style legionairies
      - a unit with inspiration from the African-inspired books other sections of this forum are working on
      -Exiled Saurus Ancients
      -A unit of banished elfs that are not evil enough to belong to the dread elves yet no longer want to belong to HBE or SE.
      -I feel like this army wants a skilled version of a Giant, that actually knows how to fight instead of being a big guy that just stomps things.
      -British Longbowmen

      Which one of these (if any) do you think should be included?
    • A healthy dosage of non-humans please. I imagine human core with several non-humans being their own allowance.

      Someone suggested in that other thread that the 'Pay Master' be the general and standard bearer in one package. I rather found that proposal interesting and think it's worth looking into.
      The idea that something as crucial as the general and standard bearer being tied to one, relatively, stat-wise, vulnerable character seems interesting and worth exploring. He could have the 'Stand Behind' special rule.
      One idea for a 'mount' for him would be a battle wagon, that could afford him better protection from assaults and allow him to more easily survey the battlefield.

      I'd also offer that champions simply be replaced with 'captains' in the army book, period, and that there be no need to 'upgrade' them to a captain at all. It would simplify things and help the Grand Companies stand out more from the other army books.

      I must disagree with the idea of buffing the champion/captain, as I feel that such a thing feels more 'KoE' than 'mercenary'. And if anyone should get such a thing, I would rather it be KoE... With the unit's champion/captain's protection against character challenges simply being the ability to turn down such challenges without penalty. They are mercenaries, after all, not knights.

      One special rule that would help the pike stand out further from the spear would be an ability that would allow them to potentially reposition themselves during a charge. That is to say, if a foe were to begin charging them from behind or in the flank, they could potentially alter their facing so as to meet the incoming charge. I'd imagine the ability's success would depend on a leadership roll. Perhaps a maneuver that could only be attempted if they had this 'captain' champion upgrade that people are talking about.

      By the way, I'd like a giant in the army... What? I can't be the only one that's thinking it.

      ...Also halflings. Please halflings.

      Campaign Team

    • Guthax wrote:

      how about a rule like "dust to dust"?

      Desertion! if the paymaster dies, each unit without a captain must take a leadership test. if failed , a number of soldier equal to the difference between ld and the score flies from battle (they are mercs after all). Such a huge (but flavourfull) malus can allow a good design space (special abilities / equipment)

      edit : about mixed race, norsemen too could be good mercenaries

      Fascinating concept, though it would need to be tested. There's a semi-fine line between 'flavorful' and 'pain in the butt'.

      Campaign Team

    • Other than thinking about tons of units we could use the renown regiment mechanic to allow different countries troops. Like: promote champion to captain in a infantry troop-> options could be:
      -light troops with no armor, shield and thriwing spears, charge and shoot, doubles wound count on charging as battle result (Zulu flavour troops)
      -heavy troops with heavy armour, throwing weapons and +1 to wound (legionaries)
      -light troops with duel shield and +1Att (duelists)
      -equitanian refugee
      This way we can add lot of troops with limited choices. From different parts f the world.

      (To the one who proposed the ancient saruian he is mentally linked to the lord but others are possible.
      We can do generic base core troops, like infantry, skirmishers, pikemen, crossbowmen and upgrade them with renown regiment mechanic.

      (Also english longbowmen are elven archers)
    • Emperor_Zoron wrote:

      I must disagree with the idea of buffing the champion/captain, as I feel that such a thing feels more 'KoE' than 'mercenary'. And if anyone should get such a thing, I would rather it be KoE... With the unit's champion/captain's protection against character challenges simply being the ability to turn down such challenges without penalty. They are mercenaries, after all, not knights.

      I think on the contrary that this rule perfectly fit the mercenaries approach.
      They are constituted in companies. They have their own boss who is the captain of the company : he negotiate contract for the company, he give them something to eat, and he leads them to fight. If their captain tell them : "No we will not participate to this fight because our general is a coward" they will follow him and not the general. We have to reflect this other organisation which is not the same as other armies (based on loyalty and power relationship.)
      We cannot envisage one hero per regiment. But I can fairly imagine something between champion an hero.
      Moreover, such a rule will give a real identity to the army rather than a simple assembly of different races.

      I will not enter in a KoE debate in this thread but I think enhance their heroes instead of lower them should be a better idea.
    • Mercenary Captain

      Champions swap their profile for that of a standard Hero (2HP though).

      Characters and Mercenary Captains may take a "Trait of Renown". Characters may not join units with a Mercenary Captain

      Example 1:
      "Drill Master" - Unit with this character may reroll failed tests to march, redirect Chargers and charge Rolls.

      Example 2:
      "Foul Reputation" - Mercenary Captain only
      Unit Gains Insignificant and does not award objektive points in Capture the Flag scenarios