The Judgement team continue to work on two streams for the wave 2 Kickstarter, which is to manufacturer the miniatures and ensure the game's rules are in good shape. Today's blog post is about the latter including both a core rulebook update and tweaks to 4 of the wave 2 heroes. The hero changes will be included in the official Patch Notes #3, which will is scheduled for July 1st, however we felt we would release these ones now so that tournament organisers had the option of using them in their tournaments, before patch #3, if they wished. Please note that since the wave 2 models are not actually released, tournament organisers are not obliged to allow them at all, however we are encouraging TOs to allow players to include a single wave 2 hero paper-doll in their Warbands.
Core Rulebook Update
An out of cycle core rulebook update is not something we would normally do, however we have had to prepare it for the wave 2 Two Player Starter Box so we decided to make it available for download immediately. Version 1.3 of the Judgement core rulebook is sporting a new cover and basically includes a number of clarifications, and standardisations, based on player feedback. The core rulebook is downloadable as a PDF from the Print & Play section of our website or you can click this link here.
These rules updates are technically not official until 1st of July, when we publish Patch Notes #3, however we are making them available for players and tournament organisers to use if they wish. Official tournaments, run by the Judgement team, will be using these updated hero rules and they will be added to both the iOS and Android mobile apps in the coming days.
We felt that Zhonyja's previous level 3 ability, Last Breath, was underwhelming and did not add anything interesting to her kit considering it only triggered when she died. Zhonyja is meant to represent a frenzied orc warrior, all rage and fury, so after a lot of consideration we decided to give her the more characterful, and potent, ability Counter Strike. This means, at level 3, Zhonyja is a scary proposition to charge particularly if she can apply a Fury token to an enemy out of activation.
The design team are very happy with where Skye basic kit sits among his defender peers. An AGI based defender provides an interesting counter point to the RES based ones and he has opened up different Warband options for many players. After several months play testing we came to the conclusion that Heroic Stand provided little counter play and could really stifle the flow of a game once it was in play. We have made 3 tweaks to it in an attempt to bring it back in line. It can no longer be cast on defenders, the range has dropped from 8" to 5", and it now grants 4 temporary health instead of 5.
Xyvera was the hero the design team used to push the boundaries. This is an important step in the evolution of any game, opening up opportunities to move into new directions and increasing the variety of tools available with future heroes. It has come as no surprise to us that she has been a difficult one to balance, however after this last batch of changes we are a lot more comfortable with where she currently sits. Corrupt Blood was changed so that both the friendly, and enemy, hero models have to be within 4" of Xyvera. Previously the enemy model only had to be within 4" of the friendly model she damaged, effectively giving this ability a 10" range allowing her to do serious damage from the safety of the backline. This change means she has to be a lot closer to the action to use Corrupt Blood.
The major change for Xyvera is her Soul Link ability, which was proving to be too easy for her to get into play and once there proved too dominant, with very little counter play. The first change was to swap her level 2 and level 3 abilities around. This moved Soul Link to level 3 meaning she would get access to it later in the game, but it also means that Diminish Will, which we feel is an interesting ability, will get to see more play time. Soul Link's cost has been raised to 1A+1F, from 1A, and finally we removed defender models as valid targets. The design team want to keep Soul Link in Xyvera's kit, and while it is still a strong ability, these changes mean it has the appropriate cost and restrictions in place to ensure the balance is maintained with other level 3 abilities.
We are also taking this opportunity to officially release the 1st version of Barnascus' rules, and giving players and tournament organisers the opportunity to allow him in their games. As many of you know, Barnascus was designed as a result of the "Become a Hero!" backer from our wave 2 Kickstarter. The design team are so pleased with the aesthetic he brings to the table and worked hard putting together rules that mirrored the fact he is a dwarf riding a tank-like platform. The one change we made from his beta version was to give him a brand new level 1 Fate ability called Grind. Simulating Barnascus grinding his opponents into the turf under his tank tracks, Grind provides the opportunity to do True Damage to multiple opponents simultaneously which gives Barny's kit a bit more bite.