The One Ring

Thoughts on including the new Hobbit releases?
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Author:  Coenus Scaldingus [ Mon Feb 06, 2017 2:30 pm ]
Post subject:  Thoughts on including the new Hobbit releases?

Title says it all really. There and Back Again gave a number of new units and altered existing ones. Additionally, some of the new heroes may have special rules that could be incorporated in Battle Companies, on top of which there are the army special rules that are worth considering. Of course, BCs are always purely from their own particular list, so would you automatically include the extra rules, leave them out entirely or add them as a special rule that can be unlocked by a hero in the list?

Some things on the various warbands:
-Thranduil's Halls. Can probably stay as it is, the extra armour doesn't change too much and all level-ups remain sensible.

-Lake-town. No new units, but Hilda's and Percy's special rules could be worth considering for heroes.

-Gundabad. The new Berserker would replace the near-identical Brawler. Goblin Mercenaries could be included here, or in the Goblin Town list?

-Iron Hills, the big one. Surely deserving of their own warband, although they have few options. It could be based on the current one, with basic Dwarf Warriors, becoming Iron Hills Veterans, becoming the proper Iron Hills Dwarves. Stat-wise a logical progression, but their shieldwall special rule is fairly pointless if there are no or few others around. It may then be worth skipping the Veteran step, going straight to the IH Dwarf level (with crossbow for archers). It would feel right to insert a promotion between that one and the very powerful Goat Rider, although I suppose many other troops (Mahûd, Black Númenóreans, Dol Amroth) also take the 10+ points leap in a single promotion. Various special rules of Dain and the captain would again make for fine option in this company.

So - has anybody given any thought to this yet? Ideas?

Author:  Commissariat [ Tue Feb 07, 2017 2:39 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Thoughts on including the new Hobbit releases?

I have given it a lot of thought. The iron hills stuff is new and interesting but also now has probably earned their own faction. Black Numenoreans are getting the bat, Dol Amroth too I believe. So Iron hills should not get the jump either.

The odd bit to work with is that the Iron Hills Veteran option exists but so does the new Iron Hill Warriors. I could rename the Iron Hills Veterans and make a Iron Hills faction, but how much do the Iron Hills really have of their own? Hardly enough for a satisfying battle company to say the least. So in the interest of strengthening an existing faction I now look to buffing Durin's Folk or Erebor. Erebor is a weird faction, simply put, as it is double dipping and is not very focused.

I'd introduce Iron Hill Warriors, despite weird name progression, in Durin's Folk to be either:
- a T2 Choice for Durin's Folk, competing with Veterans, and then Ram Riders being a T3 promotion.
- a T3 Choice after Veterans, but competing with the other Dwarven Elites and then having Ram Riders a T4 to justify the huge point jump.

The problem with the second one is that it makes Rams hard to get and so you are effectively only going to have heroes on rams. The 1st one is manageable but then makes it unlikely that you will ever go Veteran path for Khazad Guard.

Make them a promotion of Erebor Dwarves as an alternative to Grimhammers with Rams as Tier 3, but then what happens to Grimhammers?

Iron Hills as their own faction:
Dwarf Warrior with Bow-> Iron Hills Veteran Ranger -> Iron Guard
Dwarf Warrior -> Iron Hills Veteran Warrior -> Iron Hills Warrior -> Ram Rider
(Quite small, though I might just leave out the Dwarf Warrior all together)

I'd be very tempted to just roll Dwarves all into one package, maybe give them more special rules as compensation.

Dwarf Warrior → Iron Hills Veteran
Iron Hills Veteran Warrior→ Khazâd Guard OR Iron Hills Warrior
Dwarf Ranger → Iron Hills Veteran Ranger
Iron Hills Veteran Ranger → Iron Guard OR Iron Hills Warrior w/ Xbow
Warrior of Erebor → Grim Hammer OR Iron Hills Warrior
Iron Hills Warrior → Ram Rider

I am still working on it to see what flows best, but this is my thought process.

TL;DR I think unifying Durin's folk, because they already have the Iron Hills Veteran upgrade, with Iron Hills Forgeworld helps dwarves in general and still makes sense. Throw in Erebor because Erebor and Dale is not very satisfying unless you make up a bunch of profiles to make it work.

Author:  Coenus Scaldingus [ Tue Feb 07, 2017 11:44 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Thoughts on including the new Hobbit releases?

A very familiar thought process by the looks of things!

Given the number of elite units in the army, my preference would be to create two different lists (so as to reduce competition between the choices), although my mind also has yet to settle on a particular configuration. Thematically and in terms of equipment (i.e. spears), Warriors of Erebor may be a precursor to the Iron Hills warriors (splitting them from Dale sounds fine too me).

Erebor (pre- and post-Smaug)
Warrior of Erebor > Iron Hills Warrior > Goat Rider
Dwarf Ranger with throwing axes > Grimhammer
Dwarf Ranger with bow > Iron Hills Dwarf with crossbow

Could include the Veteran between Ranger and crossbow, although it doesn't make sense in the throwing axe version given the strength reduction that would follow. Unlike the old Dwarf Warrior with bow/Ranger with longbow conundrum, I'd feel the ranged troop upgrade here is certainly worth it: no movement, but better armour, same range and doubling the missile strength.

Durin's Folk then:
Dwarf Warrior > Veteran
Veteran with bow > Iron Guard
Veteran with shield/Two-handed weapon > Khazad Guard

Erebor will have the stronger final melee troop in the form of cavalry, but the second list has the superior Iron Guard. Alternatively, if combined in a single list, the Iron Guard would stat- and pointswise be a reasonable pick as the missing link between the Goat Rider and whatever precedes them (F4, S4, no shields). Having the Goats as a Tier 4 seems reasonable given their power and the fairly strong other options in the list. Possibly:

Dwarf ranger with throwing axes > Veteran with throwing axes or Grimhammer
Veteran with throwing axes > Iron Guard > Goat rider

Allowing you to take either a tougher unit early on, or play the long game and eventually be rewarded with the Goat. I don't currently have the time to look at what remains and whether it warrants a seperate list (unless replicated, not having Iron Guard would be a major setback), but hope the above aids somehow.

Author:  Murgash [ Fri Mar 10, 2017 10:56 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Thoughts on including the new Hobbit releases?

Hey guys, just recently joined the page and thought you might be interested in the idea I had when thinking about Iron Hills.
(Might have to mention that I only own the Mordor sourcebook and therefore don't know the exact dwarf profiles.)
Here's my version of an Iron Hills Battle Company list.

Iron Hills?: (Add to The Free Peoples)

Reinforcements List

Dwarf Warrior – 8 Gold
Iron Hills Dwarf – 11 Gold

Warrior Equipment List

1 Gold – Shield, Spear, Two-Handed Axe
2 Gold – Mattock, Crossbow
3 Gold – Throwing Axes
9 Gold – War Goat

Hero Equipment List

1/5 Gold –Shield, Spear, Two-Handed Axe
2/6 Gold – Mattock, Crossbow
3/8 Gold – Heavy Dwarf Armor
6/10 Gold – Pony
9/12 Gold – War Goat


Dwarf Warrior → Iron Hills Veteran
Iron Hills Dwarf → Iron Hills Goat Rider
Iron Hills Dwarf with Mattock → Iron Hills Goat Rider with Mattock

Iron Hills Special Rules & Relics

Head Butt
see Dain Ironfoot

Fearsome Charge
see Dain Ironfoot

Weapon Master
see Dwalin


War Boar
only one Hero

A Note about Iron Hills Battle Companies
A Hero only fighting with with hand weapons may receive up to four attacks. Spears always count as war spears.

Author:  Murgash [ Sat Mar 11, 2017 9:33 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Thoughts on including the new Hobbit releases?

I've also thought about an update for Gundabad. I think giving Goblin Mercenaries the possibility to get promoted to Blackshields is allright since we allready have other Battle Companies combining LOTR with Hobbit era profiles, like Thranduil's Halls.


Reinforcements List

Goblin Mercenary – 5 Gold
War Bat – 25 Gold

change to:

Gundabad Orc → Gundabad Berserker
Gundabad Orc with Spear → Gundabad Berserker with Two-Handed Pick
Goblin Mercenary → Gundabad Blackshield
Hunter Orc OR Fell Warg → Hunter Orc on Fell Warg

Goblin Mercenaries, Gundabad Blackshields and War Bats may not be promoted to heroes.

Author:  Murgash [ Sat Mar 11, 2017 9:40 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Thoughts on including the new Hobbit releases?

This would be my update for Dol Guldur, since the Option for Dol Guldur Orcs is technically no longer available. I thnk it would king of make sense (if you combine LOTR with the Hobbit) to instead change the promotions to the new Dol Guldur list, giving unequipped Orcs and Archers the chance to become a Hunter Orc and the remaining Orcs will become Gundabad Orcs. I don't think that Berserkers should be included as an option as we only sie them in BOTFA.

Dol Goldur:

change to:

Orc Warrior with Shield → Gundabad Orc with Shield
Orc Warrior with Spear/Two-Handed Weapon → Gundabad Orc with Spear
Orc Warrior → Hunter Orc
Hunter Orc → Hunter Orc on Fell Warg
Wild Warg → Warg Rider
Warg Rider → Hunter Orc on Fell Warg

Author:  Erunion [ Tue Mar 14, 2017 12:14 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Thoughts on including the new Hobbit releases?

Greetings, Murgash.

Thank you for your suggestions. The Battle Companies ruleset will be getting an update in the near future (when I can finally get a copy of the TABA rulebook -- They keep selling out!). I appreciate the input!

Author:  Sithious [ Thu Mar 23, 2017 11:12 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Thoughts on including the new Hobbit releases?

When updating the rules again I would like to ask if we can discuss the return of "bonus dice" instead of just mercenaries when there is a points difference. I played rhun yesterday against my friends erebor force. First match I scored only 1 wound and lost every single model to wounds without any escape or break test helping avoid death. So second match I was not any stronger of a b.c. and there was now a 66 point difference in rating. I took 7 nerds with shield and spear. We played fire scenario. I never got in contact with a building. I lost ever single model to wounds giving my opponent 14 points if xp in wounds to help him with the participation xp to gain promotions. I once again scored only 1 wound the entire match. I still don't have enough gold to recruit and not one person is more than 3 xp in 2 matches. Mercs did not help me, they helped my opponent. Bonus dice may have given me second chances to wounds and would not have given my opponent any extra xp from kills. So I think it would be cool to have it as an option still to choose. I also think an easterling list that allows rhun and khand to ally would help me as I would have liked and 2 handed weapons to be able to break defense 7 models a bit more often than next to never, but for now just want to discuss the bonus dice option.

Author:  Erunion [ Thu Mar 23, 2017 1:57 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Thoughts on including the new Hobbit releases?

Greetings, Sithious.

First of all, "7 nerds with shield and spear" made me laugh. I'm not familiar with that troop type. Haha!

I understand your frustration with the Mercenary system but it was chosen as a fix to the Re-roll system because it was found to be inadequate. I'll be re-evaluating the Mercenary system as part of the next update, so there may be some tweaks to how that works, but I don't think that reverting to the old system will fix the problem. D7 is hard to crack, re-rolls or no.

As the underdog company, did you select the Fire scenario? That is another balancing factor, built into the system.

Author:  Sithious [ Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:13 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Thoughts on including the new Hobbit releases?

We had pre determined what scenarios we were going to do as we want to try them all. It just so happened that I got clobbered and has 2 heroes sitting out that match while he has gained 2 new recruits from last victory when he destroyed me. So we looked at options. There was no way I could set fires or put them out with a smaller force so I took mercenaries to help (which are very close to rhun easterling profile). It was only afterward that I realized that I am winning just as many fights as my opponent yet failing to wound. I know once I can get a priest in there and get some guys on horse, or dragon knights, any of that will help. Until then I cannot score wounds. I like the idea of the force, would love if I could mercenary in khand troops to have some 2 handed weapons to help turn won fights into wounds. Is It possible that the mercenary system could allow you purchase any starting troop type from related allies (like rhun can get mercenaries from any fallen realms list for their one time use). I think this would put some variety in the mercenary selection and players would hire help that complements their forces weakness. For example if you lack good now fire, grabbing hatadrim archers for a match as mercenaries might help that game. Or in my army, getting either some s4 uruk or some 2 handed weapons to help get wounds could help for a match against a superior force. Just thinking out loud, and I am not near my books so hard to look at the big picture of other forces.

Yes d7 dwarves are hard to crack with s3 warriors and s2 bows. Even my best tricks to stack my pikes and limit my frontline did not help cause in the long run I never removed any opponents, eventually they whittle you down.

Author:  Commissariat [ Wed Apr 05, 2017 6:42 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Thoughts on including the new Hobbit releases?

On topic response for the Iron Hills discussion:
I'd either roll dwarves into one faction or have an Iron Hills / Erebor faction after scooting Dale and Laketown together.

Mercenary discussion:
We had toyed with the idea of having an allies matrix of potential mercenary items to pull from, but you are not supposed to necessarily be getting too much of a hand-out as the underdog. I'd be in favor of reintroducing the re-roll mechanic as an alternative choice for players when determining what underdog boon they want then allowing this cherry-picking of mercenaries sort of deal. It would be included with the other alternate option of the Traps and Snares.

I also think, like Necromunda which this game's campaign system is heavily based off of, that the underdog bonus should be out of game (not in game). You get bonuses for hunting down the bigger companies, not a supplemented amount of kudo points or xp(mercenaries) for the opponent. So you still are obviously weaker, but the catch up mechanic of getting more gold and xp would help swing people back into the game without fiddling with re-rolls or giving away potential xp in the form of mercenaries nor the mercenaries taking away xp from you.

Giant Killer and Underdog bonuses from Necromunda would be fantastic, making it worthwhile to actually hunt down and challenge bigger fish instead of having a constant division among players/companies.

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