Friday, September 10, 2010

Arcane Legions game, 9/3/10

I haven't played Arcane Legions since PrezCon (in February), but now that Rob had some stuff, and I had a free Friday, I figured it was as good a time as any to break it out again.

Rob has pictures of the game, so whenever he decides to post them, I'll make sure to link to them.

The original goal of this post was to give you a battle report of the game, but alas, Rob and I were drinking, and we'll only have pictures to show the game happening.

I will say a few things about the game, however.

First, the distribution system is kind of nice. I find collectible games to suck- they are annoying to get into, and really annoying to stay 'up-to-date' on. However, Arcane Legions makes it a little easier in two ways. First, the starter box comes with a decent sized army for all three of the different armies (Romans, Hans, Egyptians). Second, the booster packs are split up by faction. There's a Roman booster box, an Egyptian one, etc. That really helps keep the overall cost of playing down, since you'll likely choose an army and only purchase things you need.

Second, although I like the overall simplicity of the rules, I have to wonder if they've made a balanced game. In the game we played, I destroyed my opponent by shooting. And shooting and shooting. Really, I didn't spend THAT many points on shooting, but even two units right down the middle were capable of killing anything that approached them. And you can sacrifice a model in the unit to shoot again, once per turn. Sure, that means I lose guys- but overall it's too effective not to do from time to time. I don't like that.

Third, the games we've played are very simple. Two control points in the middle of the table, the objective being to control them and score points (3/turn, first to 21 wins). You also gain a few points for killing the opposing units. I wonder if there's more options for playing the game I don't know about?

Finally- the way orders are given out, only a small portion of your army does anything on a given turn. We each had about 7 or so units, and with only 8 orders per turn (and each of our units requiring two orders to do anything, so basically 4 a turn!), a few of our units spent the entire game as spectators. It's kind of weird.

I like the game, but it's going to take a few games to get my head around some of these issues. It really may be just lack of experience.

Also, the minis have some pretty mediocre quality... that's never a good thing in a miniature game. I wonder if some good paint jobs would enhance their look. Rob needs to get on that! ;)


  1. The Arcane legions came and went quickly locally. After all the casual players were slaughtered by the players who had joined the online club and gained access to clubmember only special formations, the gaming went downhill. The idea that if everybody pays to join the club, they would all be equal but that is not the way it worked.

  2. The order system tends push players to focus on only their best units. Try moving more of your army up first. You'll get there slower but you'll have more attack options. Shooting does seem overpowered, but may have been fixed in FAQ. My painted Romans:

  3. @ColKillgore: That sounds terrible man. Thankfully, Rob and I aren't likely to go that route, since although we're competitive, we do enjoy fair systems. Good to know what would happen otherwise though...

    @Monkey: I'll have to look into the FAQ. Those Romans look great! I really quite like the way they look. Maybe painting Rob's stuff would give us both more enjoyment?

    I think moving up more steadily would probably give us more to do, the problem is that I'll often badly need to take down something, or save another unit which is in trouble, and I'll have to blow through those orders to do it.

    Maybe next game I'll make a dedicated effort to slowly moving EVERYTHING into position. I'll certainly try it!