The 9th Scroll: What Special Character Archtypes would you like to see in the 9th Age?

This site uses cookies. By continuing to browse this site, you are agreeing to our Cookie Policy.

  • I agree with @Squirrelloid and followers. But I agree also, that every faction needs legendary characters to put some flavor in the game.

    Maybe they can be integrated in the book like eos imperial prince : one more attack, or 1 point better os/ds and a magical item from the book included (like the light of Sonnstahl). Then they won't be to powerful but can be played

    That said I would love to have a (female) champion of sunna and maybe some named imperial Princes for EOS
  • VS Fetthis Broodmaster with either Shamanism Adept (fixed spells - like Awaken the Beast, Swarm of Insects, Chilling Howl or Totemic Summon) or buyable upgrades to Giant Rats, Vermin Hulks & Rat Swarms.
    Current armies:
    WDG
    SA

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    Armywide Signature Spells - Check! Maybe you could add something more? Success! We got Hereditary Spells!
  • For KoE, as there are allusions to the Grail, Tristan, Percival, Uther, Roland, I wish to see some characters reflecting medieval legends, Round Table and Charlemagne.

    Round Table:

    Could we get Arthur and his sword Excalibur?

    Gawain 's strength waxes and wanes with the sun: could a special character have his strength increase from turn 1 to 3, then decrease?

    What about a Bard such as Taliesin? Able to metamorph in various animals.

    Charlemagne:

    I would love to see the legendary horse Bayard, able to carry the four knights Renaud, Richard, Alard, and Guiscard and defeat Charlemagne.

    I love also the figure of Rainouart au Tinel, found in the Aliscans legend, who is a giant knight with a large mace, even stronger than the mighty Guillaume d'Orange himself, and who was the only knight to accept to lead the Peasant Levy to the battle.

    If you want more inspiration from real medieval legends, I could provide a lot more.

    Social Media Team

    UN Coordinator, aka UNSG

    - druchii.net contribution: The 9th Age - Dread Elves
  • Legendary named characters don't necessarily need unique special rules.

    For example, in SE we recently had a discussion about the future of the Avatar of Nature. It was suggested that we could give it a few options, kind of like a Demon Prince customization. With one option it becomes a fast, charge-based combat character, congrats, you just made Orion. A flying spell caster option? Now it's Ariel. Slow, durable combat option? Durthru.

    Other a little work we give players options which can perfectly represent their favourite named characters (obviously that should be T9A characters, not GW ones, I just used theirs since we don't have backgrounds for T9A named characters yet), but follow the normal rules, and can just as easily represent the players own made up characters.
  • I think that T9A special characters should be all about the army building in some form, more than being just super special in their own right, as has been suggested before.

    Or even SUPER SPECIAL, but then limiting the army out of its most powerful options, like a lord of the wasteland who only accepts Favored models and nothing else, but is a super beatstick in his own right.
  • I hated using special characters in WHFB because it made me think my army wasn't mine, but a recreation of an existing entity. I love my EoS Imperial Marshal being an unnamed general, because I can forge my own narrative with him and his army. With a named character at the helm I always felt you were playing with someone else's toys.

    However! They definitely need to exist, because once the background is more and more revealed, these named characters in the lore will inevitably appear and shape the world. IMHO these characters are important for fluff (and fluffy games), but need to stay out of main army books and in an Auxiliary book
  • OK:

    A legendary Scrapling character, boosting it's own units and Scraplings overall. Maybe riding a Scrapling palanquin or even an Ogre beaten into submission. Some restrictions on army composition.

    A legendary bombardier, boosting the Ogre gunline. Something like 2d6 shots with S5 and ap3, and a decent enough Aim score. Perhaps the Engineer trait.

    A humongous Ogre, with stats mixing that of a Great Khan and a Giant (towering presence, 1d6 Stomps etc.).

    That's of the top of my head. But I agree with some of the participants in this thread, a lot can be achieved using auxiliary armies (such as a Scrapling Horde).
  • I agree with @Squirrelloid in that special characters should not be part of the main game. I don't want to see them at a tournament.

    I would like to see special characters as an expansion. Maybe as part of a T9A worldwide fluff campaign.
    Once 2.0 gets settled this is what you do:
    You get those writers to come up with a story. Write some custom scenarios, some special characters, some special units, special magic items. etc...

    This way you don't have to worry about balance as much. You can throw in some SLIGHTLY overpowered combos that are actually fun. Note: T9A OP, not GW OP - I think we all know what I'm talking about here :hiddenthreat:

    This is an excerpt from my local city league campaign that we did this year.


    "Avras is the capital city of the Empire of Sonnstahl. Partway through their history, the empire fell apart due to corruption and the city was conquered by the Vermin Swarm. It took hundreds of years for the empire to recover their might and re-capture their capital. Avras had a unique location as a "crossroads" city which opened up trade routes to nearby civilizations but also exposed it to attack on many sides"

    By focusing the story of special characters/units on a themed campaign we get:
    1) a cool fluff story that sets the context for the special stuff
    2) a fun scenario to try out these special entries
    3) Rules that are separate from the carefully balanced competitive play.
    4) a wide open spectrum for ideas/rules that are not limited to 1 special character. You can literally do anything.
    1 special character with uber stats
    1 special unit with interesting stats
    a combination of units that get special rules to represent their task force
    An army wide special rule specific to the environment/battlefield/opponent.





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

  • WhammeWhamme wrote:

    Squirrelloid wrote:

    WhammeWhamme wrote:

    Do I agree with Squirreloid:

    No. HECK no. It's not that "Special Characters" should be OP compared to normal characters - but because they aren't customizable, they can be used to make designs that work because of what they don't have, not just what they do have.

    I mean, we all know there are a lot of nitpicky restrictions on stuff in T9A designed to avoid broken combinations that take out other things as collateral damage, right? How much more elegant to have a model that just says "this is this. Take it as it is, or don't take it"?
    Here's the problem:-There's no point in special characters unless people want to actually use them-People don't want to actually use them unless they're (a) more powerful than regular characters or (b) allow you to do things you can't do with regular characters
    -More powerful is right out, because then regular characters stop being used.
    -There's no purpose to (b), because you could just create character upgrades or items which do that thing. T9A effectively lets us create our own special characters in most armies.
    -And no, there's no way to avoid problematic combinations of items and get a character people will actually use. Because some of those 'problematic' things are generally considered required by the players to be worthwhile. (Example: A non-wizard special character without a special save would probably never see play, assuming it wasn't totally broken in some other way).

    But even ignoring those things, it's bad for player agency to have special characters. Because if they're good enough to play, players won't develop their own characters with their own story.
    I disagree with you on (b), because you can attach appropriate drawbacks to a special character that you... well, yes you CAN attach it to a regular character, but it's obnoxious to give options with so many conditions.


    Also, by giving them sub-par kit, but pricing for the entire package of what you get, you can make things that feel better; a Lord-level Taurukh Anointed, for example, instead of the less-than-hero-level Subjugator, but he's not kitted out completely optimally.

    Plus you can represent things that are setting-wise rarer-than-rare ; e.g. wizards who use different paths than the norm for their faction, characters for things which don't usually have them, etc.


    (Actually, I'd say make Special Characters "Unique - An army may only field one Unique model" ; not just one copy of that one, but one period. Right there, that added level of mutual exclusivity, is an extra design tool. And it makes sense, generally - most special characters would have never met each other, let alone fought together.)


    Yes, sure, technically you can just let people to do it all without making them named characters - but developing the cast of our world is incredibly valuable in terms of making this a setting that lives on it's own terms. Special characters make for a shared vocabulary, a shared experience.


    The BGT _has_ to make named characters to convey the world well; storytelling needs stories and stories need characters.
    I totally agree with having named characters in the fluff. I just don't think they need their own special rules. They should be built using their AB like any other character.

    The balance reasons are totally secondary, and my reasoning is 100% narrative. I'd rather have players playing with their own characters and telling their own stories. I don't want to play with someone else's character.
    Just because I'm on the Legal Team doesn't mean I know anything about rules or background in development, and if/when I do, I won't be posting about it. All opinions and speculation are my own - treat them as such.

    Legal

    Playtester

    Chariot Command HQ

  • You don't want to play someone else's character?

    Fair enough. That's a good reason to not make Special Characters both OP and tournament legal.

    That's not a good reason to not let them exist for people who do like them.


    I mean, there are people who don't like all sorts of things. Non-cavalry models in their KoE army, f'rex. We let them play without peasants, but we don't remove the peasants from the book. Same dealy. Catering to a variety of tastes means making some stuff Squirelloid doesn't want to play with.
  • WhammeWhamme wrote:

    You don't want to play someone else's character?

    Fair enough. That's a good reason to not make Special Characters both OP and tournament legal.

    That's not a good reason to not let them exist for people who do like them.


    I mean, there are people who don't like all sorts of things. Non-cavalry models in their KoE army, f'rex. We let them play without peasants, but we don't remove the peasants from the book. Same dealy. Catering to a variety of tastes means making some stuff Squirelloid doesn't want to play with.
    I've never yet seen special characters walk the line between useable and basically required to play the game. Basically, I doubt this can be done in a way that won't compel players to use them and still see any play.

    -------------------

    Also, we know how this works out. GW didn't let players use special characters in WHFB (or 40k) tournaments once upon a time. They were 'use with opponent's permission only'. And, lo and behold, no one allowed their opponent to play with them. So GW just made them regular choices (because they cared about selling models).

    In our case, there's no point to spend time designing units no one will play with. (We don't have the model motivation, but we have significant time constraints and care a lot about balance). Tournament rules tend to become the rules most players use at home. So if it's not tournament legal, it might as well not exist.
    Just because I'm on the Legal Team doesn't mean I know anything about rules or background in development, and if/when I do, I won't be posting about it. All opinions and speculation are my own - treat them as such.

    Legal

    Playtester

    Chariot Command HQ

  • So there was no point to making the Asklanders book?

    T9A does "not tournament legal by default".



    I also question the idea that none made it to "useful, but not mandatory". Using GW as an example of a game where this happened, and using descriptions because I forget the names now - there was the Skink Palanquin guy who was close to mandatory, but in the same book there was also the flappy guy and uber-Chameleon who were somewhat less useful, and iirc the Temple Guard guy was less useful still... they came on a fairly broad spectrum there, is the point, and it takes a pretty narrow focus to say they were all either OP or worthless.

    I mean, okay, sure, everyone clouded yadda yadda, but I was running block Saurus and happy with them when no one else "serious" would, so there's degrees of power here, y'know? There's top tier competitive and then there's "why would you even put that on the table?" and there is space in between them no matter what the most hypercompetitive players would say.
  • WhammeWhamme wrote:

    You don't want to play someone else's character?

    Fair enough. That's a good reason to not make Special Characters both OP and tournament legal.

    That's not a good reason to not let them exist for people who do like them.


    I mean, there are people who don't like all sorts of things. Non-cavalry models in their KoE army, f'rex. We let them play without peasants, but we don't remove the peasants from the book. Same dealy. Catering to a variety of tastes means making some stuff Squirelloid doesn't want to play with.
    They can exist without needing their own special rules. Those who like using named characters can recreate them from their AB using the normal rules (ABs could even have a suggested build to represent them in the fluff section).

    If they have their own special rules, they will either be auto-include for certain list types, or they will be uncompetitive and limited to fluff games. The balance is too fine, and balancing them to be competitive without being near auto-include is nigh impossible.
  • CariadocThorne wrote:

    WhammeWhamme wrote:

    You don't want to play someone else's character?

    Fair enough. That's a good reason to not make Special Characters both OP and tournament legal.

    That's not a good reason to not let them exist for people who do like them.


    I mean, there are people who don't like all sorts of things. Non-cavalry models in their KoE army, f'rex. We let them play without peasants, but we don't remove the peasants from the book. Same dealy. Catering to a variety of tastes means making some stuff Squirelloid doesn't want to play with.
    They can exist without needing their own special rules. Those who like using named characters can recreate them from their AB using the normal rules (ABs could even have a suggested build to represent them in the fluff section).
    If they have their own special rules, they will either be auto-include for certain list types, or they will be uncompetitive and limited to fluff games. The balance is too fine, and balancing them to be competitive without being near auto-include is nigh impossible.

    You know what? This is rubbish. There's nothing about "being a character" that makes a model harder to balance, and having less upgrades makes it easier to balance.


    I recently data-entried the ID lists from the WTC and Luxembourg Bash. IIRC, there was precisely one guy fielding a Taurukh Subjugator. If the exact build he'd picked was turned into "Albakadezzar of the Black Fortress" (name made up on the spot) and could not be built using the normal rules, it would be a barely playable - yet still playable - special character.


    Games Workshop tended to veer wildly between "unplayable drek" and "auto-include" for special characters - but they did that with everything, be it magic items, war machines, monsters - you name it, there was both a broken model of that type in some army and a nigh unplayable model of that type in some other army.
  • Squirrelloid wrote:

    Also, we know how this works out. GW didn't let players use special characters in WHFB (or 40k) tournaments once upon a time. They were 'use with opponent's permission only'. And, lo and behold, no one allowed their opponent to play with them. So GW just made them regular choices (because they cared about selling models).

    In our case, there's no point to spend time designing units no one will play with. (We don't have the model motivation, but we have significant time constraints and care a lot about balance). Tournament rules tend to become the rules most players use at home. So if it's not tournament legal, it might as well not exist.
    Remember that the mindset back then was different. The social contract was that a game company designed and tested rules to be balanced.
    As time progressed we found out that the company spent less and less time balancing their rules and instead just paid a salary employee to write some rules over the weekend and then hand it off to the sales guy who tweaked this and that to sell some models.
    And because of that we got T9A. lol

    "Tournament rules tend to become the rules most players use at home. So if it's not tournament legal, it might as well not exist."
    I find this to be less and less the case since the overall rules are actually balanced, people are more likely to accept some fun unbalanced rules because they know the "unbalanced aspect" isn't a very big margin so it doens't ruin the game.

    But ya, no special characters in tournies.
    doesn't mean the Balance Team can't take a glance at some rules in the future and say "looks good".
  • Squirrelloid wrote:

    there's no point designing units no one will play with.
    The causal logics is the reverse: if units are not designed, no one can play with them.
    I mean, T9A cannot force people to play something, but it can, and does force people NOT to play with what it has not designed.

    In any case, named characters are vital to populate the background, and provide T9A more than game mechanics: a soul.

    Social Media Team

    UN Coordinator, aka UNSG

    - druchii.net contribution: The 9th Age - Dread Elves
  • Maybe a way to go would be to introduce them as part of auxiliary books...? Maybe even a book per character..? Quite a lot of books to do :) Yet ADT & RT will need something to focus on, I don't believe everyone will find a place by full army book redesign with just 1-2 redesigns going on simultaneously
    stormrider.pl/
    facebook.com/StormRiderPL/
    _____________Report your battle results using mobile app: T9A Magic Flux!
  • WhammeWhamme wrote:

    You know what? This is rubbish. There's nothing about "being a character" that makes a model harder to balance, and having less upgrades makes it easier to balance.


    I recently data-entried the ID lists from the WTC and Luxembourg Bash. IIRC, there was precisely one guy fielding a Taurukh Subjugator. If the exact build he'd picked was turned into "Albakadezzar of the Black Fortress" (name made up on the spot) and could not be built using the normal rules, it would be a barely playable - yet still playable - special character.


    Games Workshop tended to veer wildly between "unplayable drek" and "auto-include" for special characters - but they did that with everything, be it magic items, war machines, monsters - you name it, there was both a broken model of that type in some army and a nigh unplayable model of that type in some other army.
    Maybe it is possible to balance them. All I know is that going back as far as 4th ed WFB in official rules, and around 12-13 years of home-brews on forums, the only ones I have ever seen which were reasonably balanced (by which I mean they were viable in at least one list type without being near-mandatory in any list type), have been ones which where barely different from characters which could be made by normal means. So if it is possible to make really different and unique characters who are genuinely balanced, I've never seen it done yet.

    Calisson wrote:

    In any case, named characters are vital to populate the background, and provide T9A more than game mechanics: a soul.
    Do those named characters need to have their own special rules though, or is it enough to have background material and let players recreate their favourite named characters using the normal rules?
  • A pegasus riding Koe Duke - who unlocks either a bigger percentage of Airborne Gallantry or allows you to take Peg Knights as Core <3 <3
    Mainly play KoE and OnG

    Live in London or the South East? Fancy a weekend in the big smoke? Come and take part in our two day singles tournament in Bromley on 26-27 May, 2018.

    Rory Stoves - Member of The London Wargaming Guild (WHGG / LWG)
    Find us at meetup.com/The-London-Warhammer-Gaming-Guild/
  • I am currently using Orion, King in the Wood, as a unit filler.

    Which is kinda really sad to me. Considering there is already an Orion analogue in the Ninth Age world I'd like to see him be shown in a Cadaron-themed list that drastically cuts down on Unseen Arrows but gives a boost to our combat potential, reducing Unseen Arrows but passing out a Battle Focus aura or swiftstride aura or something.

    I each army could definately come up with 1 major and 2 minor characters that do something unique. The major characters would effect army composistions and the minor characters would either provide something the army doesn't normally have access to (A different Path, an anti-ASAW mount, a fancy magic item) or be themed around a specific unit.