Last week, Privateer Press announced new editions of their Warmachine and Hordes game lines with a fair amount of fanfare. While there hasn’t been a lot of information out yet, I am pretty excited by what I have heard, so I wanted to take a moment to post my early thoughts.
First and foremost, I was excited by a single line in the trailer, “battlegroups are much more powerful than they have ever been before; warjacks are going to be more efficient than you’ve ever seen on the tabletop.” This statement epitomizes what I love about Warmachine and Hordes – warcasters, warjacks, warlocks, and warbeasts doing battle on a miniature battlefield. While infantry certainly has its place in Warmachine and Hordes, I would really like to see warjacks and warbeasts incentivized over infantry by the power balance.
From the Primecast episode, there were a couple of things that sounded like good quality of life improvements in the game. In particular, the ability to premeasure is a welcome addition. As a casual gamer, the restriction against premeasuring never really made the game faster, and, in fact, seemed to slow things down more often than not. The ability to measure some things and not others seemed progressive when I first heard about it, but now Privateer Press is playing some much-needed catchup, and I think it’s well worth it.
Also, the removal of “battlefield psychology” in the form of fear and terror I believe is a good move. As they mentioned on the podcast, these mechanics could make a unit useless with one bad roll. For me, they added unused weight to the game – If I thought back to all the times when fear, terror, or abomination were actually applied combined with all the rules around fleeing, fearless, or the commander advantage, I think that the simplification is well worth it.
I’ll be keeping an eye on other changes coming with the new edition, but I’m optimistic that the game will be better overall with the new version.