Insider 08-15-2016

In just a few weeks, the first narrative league for the new editions of WARMACHINE & HORDES begins: Crossroads of Courage!

If you’re looking to enjoy a rich narrative experience that has actual stakes regarding the future of the Iron Kingdoms, look no further. Crossroads is broken down into four seasons, each season lasting four weeks. The first season begins September 1st and runs throughout the month, though you could use the rules at a later time if you and your group aren’t able to play during September. Playing during the official month of each season is best if possible, because your results will shape the future of a new character coming to WARMACHINE & HORDES!

Crossroads focuses on the adventures of a simple soldier by the name of Holden and his journey through war-torn Immoren. In fact, you can play Holden in your army each season, but we’ll get into that a bit more shortly. What’s significant is that the results of each season will change Holden bit by bit. At Lock & Load 2017, we will host a narrative finale event for the league, which will determine Holden’s final fate. Shortly thereafter, Holden will be released as a real model for WARMACHINE & HORDES, and it’s up to you to shape his destiny!

So, let’s get a bit more in depth, shall we? With the first season of Crossroads right around the corner, it’s time to dig into what you can expect and what you’ll need to play!

When are the Crossroads seasons taking place?
Season one runs throughout the month of September, with season two following in November. Season three should take place around March of 2017, with season four finishing things out in May. The true finale of the league will take place at a special event at Lock & Load GameFest 2017 that summer.

How do I participate in Crossroads?
Participating in each season is simple: download the core rules packet that covers the general guidelines and rules for the entirety of the league, and then download the season specific rules for which season you are playing in.

Check with your local hobby store or game club to see if they are running the Crossroads league, and if not, encourage them to do so! Anyone can run and participate in the league, but only a registered game store or game club can order the prize kits available.

Prizes? What prizes?!
Each season, two different participation prizes are available: Holden cards and Coins of Fate. All participants receive their Holden cards at the beginning of the league, as they are used throughout the league for any players wishing to play Holden in their games (and thereby shape his fate). The Coins of Fate are given to all players who participate in the league from start to finish, and each Coin has a special feature in the following season of Crossroads.

Wait, so there’s no overall championship prize? But what if I’m the very best, like no one ever was before?
The league rules include a scoring method to determine the top overall players each season, and if your local store or club wishes to offer a prize to those players, they are welcome to do so. But for narrative play, we prefer to reward all participants just for having a great time. It’s not about winning or losing here; it’s about having fun and potentially traumatizing Holden. Wait this FAQ is starting to get weird…

Okay, so traumatizing Holden sounds cool. What other features are in the league?
The league is packed with a lot of fun rules—and you and your group can use all of them, some of them, or none of them. Wait, no. You can’t use “none of them”; otherwise, you wouldn’t be playing the league.

Players choose to belong to one of two teams each season, Reapers or Sowers. You can change which Faction you’re playing between games, but once you commit to a team, you’re on that team until the end of that league season. The team you choose determines how you score league points for meeting certain achievements as well as your win conditions in the special narrative scenarios found in each season’s rules document.

Additionally, there are other features such as special battlefield terrain guidelines—you know, in case you’re tired of playing with 5 pieces of felt representing a tree and some hills.

I’m sorry, that was dark.

Let’s get back to Holden. Tell me more about playing him and changing him.
Each season’s prize kit comes with two Holden cards, a Courage and a Coward version. At the beginning of each week in a season is an online quiz you can take called…the Crossroads! The questions change each and every week. The answers you give will provide one of two results: Courage or Coward. Whichever result you get indicates which version of Holden you can use for that week of the season. You retake the quiz with new questions each week, meaning you’ll play the two versions of Holden throughout each league season.

Now then, as for changing Holden each season…it’s fairly unique. I bet you’re expecting some online website you need to report on, inputting individual battle victories and so on. Nope. Not at all. This is going to be very different than what you’re used to.

Holden changes based on your experiences with him, your stories. Each season, during the month the season is running you can email me ( and tell me a story about something heroic, cowardly, amazing, awesome, or just silly that happened with your Holden. You can be as detailed or as brief as you like. The more info the better, though: things like which Faction you’ve been playing, who you were facing off against during this particularly epic story, which model you used to convert your own Holden…whatever you want to include.

Your stories, your experiences, your narrative are what shape Holden. It isn’t about global wins or losses this time. It’s about your creativity, based on your real-world games in the league.

That’s weird. This is weird.

I’m going to go practice for Steamroller.
Awesome, have fun! We’ll let you know how Holden turned out when he’s been shaped by the Others.

I’m scared.

Where can I find links to all the Crossroads materials?
PRIZE KITS: U.S., International
HOLDEN’S FATE: email (Remember, only in-game stories count toward changing his fate!)