Saturday, 14 May 2011

WAB 2.0 and other rules

I still like WAB.

I know that it seems to be rather neglected by Warhammer Historical at the moment (in fact I'm not sure if GW even has staff for WH any more!?) but I still enjoy playing the system. I've played Warhammer in one form or another since 1987 and I'd like to continue.

All this excitement about Clash of Empires, Hail Caesar and War & Conquest is very enjoyable but I do feel a little sorry for poor old WAB being almost relegated to a Cinderella role whilst everyone heads off to the ball! I'm sure that these new systems will prove popular and will generally be a 'Good Thing', I'm particularly looking forward to War & Conquest. Thus I'm sure I will branch off in to new rules territory for Romans vs Celts.

For Dark Ages / Arthurian era games I think WAB has just the right atmosphere. However, there are a few things that do annoy me about the latest edition...

I can see why the rule about requiring line of sight to be able to throw javelins, shoot bows, etc, has been retained but in the last game I played we found ourselves spending too much time faffing around to get figures lined up in order to shoot. Therefore, we've decided to keep things simple and allow all the figures in the unit to shoot regardless of precise line of sight. If players are going to use very large units of skirmishers, e.g 15-20, then allowing all to shoot would be ridiculous but we tend to use small-ish units, i.e. 9-12.

Light Infantry
The current rules state that such units are able to skirmish but that this must be decided before the battle starts and the unit must remain either formed or skirmishing. I do not like this and cannot see the rationale for this rule. I very much prefer the idea that units can disperse as required, but to form up the unit requires a musician and must pass a Ld test. I can imagine that a unit of troops would break formation in order to search a farmstead, but then when the leader spies enemy approaching he sounds the recall and tries to get his troops ready to fight again. Though perhaps some are too busy chasing chickens, or glugging the farmer's ale to heed their leaders call. Hence the Ld test to form up again.

There are a few other little things too, but off the top of my head I cannot think of them.

Anyway, hopefully tomorrow I'll post a few pictures of my newly completed Dark Ages village.


Ray Rousell said...

I used to use WAB a lot for my Dark Age games, but changed a lot of the rules, I would say they're more of a competition set of rules, than a get the mates round for a game, I totally agree with your two points and play them the exact same way. Also I don't like the once you win the who goes first die throw, you go first every turn. I randomise who goes first each turn. Like you I can't remember my other the moment!!

Chicago Terrain Factory said...

I find the light infantry rules makes for a good 3rd category between skirmish and heavy. The movement rules take a bit of practice to get used to, but can make a unit much more maneuverable than a normal close order unit.

DeanM said...

I still am an advocate for WAB. Just picked up 2.0 on the cheap a month or so ago. Totally like it. In fact, I'm co-hosting a game in couple of weeks at a convention using the rules. I'm comfortable with the rules and really don't want to transition to another set at this moment in time. Warm Regards, Dean

Matt said...

Thanks chaps! It's good to know that others are still WAB fans, but also want "improve" the rules.