Privateer Insider

Last week, I gave some further insight on how errata would work in the new edition and provided a general overview of what and when to expect them.

Today I’m going to answer some of the biggest questions you asked of us in the official forum thread on last week's Insider.

Season One of our narrative campaign, Crossroads of Courage, has come to an end, and our good friend Holden has (thanks to you) already experienced his fair share of true and utter horror.

Over the course of September I received an absolute mountain of reports from players in the league telling their Holden tales. These ranged from pithy summaries of only a few hundred words all the way up to short stories with word counts in the thousands. One group even submitted a haiku!

The greatest gift of life is friendship, and I have received it. – Hubert H. Humphrey

Welcome to fall, the season when things that go bump in the night tend to go bump all day long. And in the world of Privateer Pins, that bumping sounds more like the heavy stomping of mechanikal devastation approaching…

Warjacks take the chibi battlefield at last, as four different ’jacks made their debut this September. While a whole host of characters are still to be chibied (though the regular collectors’ request for a chibi Gavyn Kyle remains problematic…), it’s definitely time to unleash some heavy metal into the pin collection.

One of the most exciting aspects of miniature wargaming is the source material. The rich stories and vibrant characters of WARMACHINE and HORDES are one of the main reasons that people start playing. But when you sit down to build and paint your models, there’s no reason to assume the story stops and the game begins. As hobbyists, we have the power to continue the narrative and give it our own take as we see fit. In fact, in doing so we create a much more visually compelling army. Some of the most interesting and dynamic armies I’ve seen on the tabletop weren’t about technical proficiency in painting—they were about making that army unified and alive with storytelling.

Way back in May, as Lock & Load Gamefest 2016 and the launch of the new editions of WARMACHINE and HORDES were quickly approaching, I spent some time talking about one of the biggest changes the new editions would bring to the games. I’m speaking of none other than dynamic updates to game balance.

Since the new editions came out in June, we have been paying extremely close attention to the WARMACHINE and HORDES communities around the world. Not a single day has gone by that we haven’t voraciously devoured feedback and responses from any outlet offering thoughtful critique and discussion on the games. But simply amassing information is useless if we don’t analyze it and put it into practice.

I screwed up. I admit it. And that’s a good thing!

Way back in the mists of time, Trollbloods were my very first HORDES Faction, so I was thrilled at the prospect of painting the third and latest incarnation of our intrepid trollkin hero Madrak, Great Chieftain. As you might have seen if you came to see us at the Privateer Press booth at Gen Con 2016, I brought along Madrak 3 and another of our upcoming new models, Una the Skyhunter (aka Una 2), to paint during the show. While I squeezed in some time the first few days to work on Una, it got so insanely busy at the show that I barely had a moment to devote to poor Madrak. That’s when it all went sideways.

Hey, you! Ever thought you’ve got what it takes to be an official Privateer Press playtester? Well, here’s your chance!

That’s right, ladies and gentlemen! It’s that rare magical time when we extend an open call for new playtest groups. Spots are limited, and only the best of the very best feedback-giving groups will be welcomed in. And when I say limited, I mean…REALLY limited. So, put forth your best effort if you’re interested in joining the team.

In this art Insider, I’ll do more showing than telling, as each Command book cover is very straightforward. The direction we’ve taken for these books is to showcase our new warcaster or warlock, putting that character front and center surrounded by a few other classic warcasters or warlocks and with a couple of warjacks or warbeasts in the background. The idea behind each composition is similar to that of the wall of heroes visuals from DC Comics’ old Kingdom Come covers in which you get a clear view of several iconic characters.

While I used to be a frequent Insider contributor, I don’t blog nearly as much as I used to since I took the reins of No Quarter. I think the editorials I write in each issue scratch the blogging itch, but drafting my first Insider in a while feels like coming home.

In this week’s concept art Insider, I’ll be outlining the concept art development for Beast Master Xekaar, a brand-new Skorne character. Xekaar went a little more smoothly than Kozlov did, so I’m going to skip the long form brief, just give the quick bullet points, and dive right in.

In today’s Insider, I’ll be discussing the visual development of Lord Kozlov, our newest Khadoran warcaster.

The time has come to seal your fate . . . and Holden’s. Crossroads of Courage, the first narrative league for the new editions of WARMACHINE and HORDES, begins this week!

For a multitude of reasons, I was immediately drawn to Cryx when I got into WARMACHINE. Who doesn’t want to lead their own necrotite-fueled army of robots to victory over all things good and true? The lich-house aesthetic, the wealth of intriguing female characters, and the cringe-inducing concept of “necrosurgery” were among the reasons I loved the Nightmare Empire instantly. The design behind every model in the Faction is so incredible; it left me undecided for a long time on what particular army I wanted to construct.

Have you read Aeryn Rudel’s novel Acts of War: Flashpoint? This exciting novel sets the stage for a new era in the Iron Kingdoms and goes hand-in-hand with the new editions of WARMACHINE and HORDES.

New edition, new army . . . right? I have played Khador almost exclusively since the beginning of WARMACHINE Mk I, only dabbling in a few other factions from time to time, but when the new editions of WARMACHINE and HORDES dropped at Lock & Load GameFest this year, I knew it was time to start a new army.

“The Ballad of Skull Island”

I’ve talked about my obsession with the Rhulic theme in past Insiders. When asked what Faction I wanted to write about for an army-building Insider, Mercenaries was among my top choices. I had just built and painted a 75-point Khador army for Lock & Load, but I was eager to get back to my main Faction. In the spirit of the new edition rules, I decided to take some of my favorite elements from the Searforge Commission army I built for the last edition and expand on them, capitalizing on the freedom I now have to build a Merc army almost any way I want.

Feats of Heroism

Feat points are the heart of the smoking engine of the Iron Kingdoms Roleplaying Game line. With them, any PC or significant NPC can perform spectacular, well, feats of heroism or villainy. They allow a character to dash through the battlefield from one kill to the next, execute seemingly impossible tasks, and even shrug off wounds that would be the death of any lesser individual. When this engine is working at its best, the players are paying feat points out for these benefits and reaping them from their successes from turn to turn.

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