This year has been a bit bumpy for a multitude of reasons, but this weekend has something to look forward to with the release of the Defense of Ryza supplement. The wait was worth it, as Defense of Ryza is packed to the brim with something new for everyone – new lore, titan legions, knight households, stratagems, revised custom legio rules and more. We’re here to take a look at some of the highlights.
Defense of Ryza formalises the allegiance of your battlegroup: do you stand with the Emperor, the Arch-Traitor Horus and the Dark Mechanicum, or are you a Blackshield caught in the crossfire and standing alone to protect your home?
When assembling your force, you declare your faction. What’s nice here is that they have given you narrative flexibility here to cross the aisle here – Legio Tempestus splintered and in game have previously been treated as a Traitor Legio, but you can now declare your Tempestus battle group as Loyalists.
When you declare your faction, you get a reasonable set of restrictions applied. Most of them are fairly obvious – you can only take Titans of Legend or stratagems that match your declared allegiance. Additionally, only Loyalists can take Psi-Titans, and only Traitors will be able take Corrupted Titans once we get rules for them.
Depending on what allegiance you declare, your battlegroup gains an ability that will impact the way they play, and further differentiates the playstyle of the various factions.
Loyalists reeling from betrayal can use Adaptive Tactics to allow them to change an order on one of their titans at the end of the damage control phase to another (excluding Emergency Repairs) once per game. This has a number of uses, like changing a First Fire order into Split Fire to get the most use out of your ranged weapons, or moving from Charge to Full Stride to keep up the pressure if you score an engine kill in the movement phase. It’ll also let you react to an unexpected move from your opponent by changing Full Stride into another order so you can fire during the Combat phase. You’ll probably get the most mileage out of this by switching from Charge, First Fire, or Full Stride into Split Fire, as by the time you get to the Combat phase, Split Fire is all upside, but having additional options is always useful.
Traitors leverage their Unbridled Hatred for their former peers, allowing one of their titans once per game to add 2” to their movement characteristic and an additional attack dice value to melee weapons. This will let Reavers make 11” charges and roll anywhere from 4 to 7 dice with their a chainfist. Even if you don’t use the extra dice, the free added mobility once a game is a hell of a trick. This ability is straightforward, but powerful.
Condit: Hell yes.
Blackshields benefit from their Decentralised Command structure, which allows support Titans to still be issued orders if a command check has been failed. This means you’ll probably want to take a light maniple with a support Warbringer or Warlord, then issue your orders to the maniple first so that you’ll always be able to try for First Fire or Split Fire on your support Titan.
Like their larger cousins, Knight Households get their own set of allegiances which are a bit more specific to their fealty. Each alignment gets its own once per game ability as well as an additional set of Senechal Knightly Qualities to pick from.
Quertoris Imperialis households are loyalists whose oaths bind them directly to the Imperium rather than the Cult Mechanicus. They gain the once per game ability of a Valourous Charge which allows a lance to add 2” to their speed characteristic for one phase. This gives Cerastus knights a terrifying 16” threat range on the charge.
Questoris Traitoris Knights have sided with the Warmaster and their Lust for Blood allows them to add 1 dice to a melee weapon to a banner, giving some serious teeth when you need to take a target down.
After the Schism of Mars, the Questoris Mechanicus households who held their loyalty to the Omnissiah found themselves facing one another. Questoris Mechanicus Knight Households can be taken as either Loyalist or Traitor forces and have the ability to use their advanced Targeting Solutions once per game to give all banners in a lance coordinated strike, splitfire or first fire orders.
Questoris Oblitus are the forgotten Blacksheild Knight Households, who for their own reasons found themselves caught in the crossfire between the larger factions. Their Firm Resolve allows them to auto-pass a shaken test each round, giving them some reliability when it counts.
Defense of Ryza contains the rules and information for six titan legions, three a piece for loyalists and traitors. The loyalists included are Legios Crucius, Honorum and Osedax; Legios Mortis, Magna and Vulturum represent the traitors. Legios Crucius and Mortis are reprinted in this book as they were the main combatants of the Defense of Ryza. We’ve done a faction focus for each of them already, so check them out if you’d like to know more. One thing to point out: while Crucius hasn’t changed, the wording of Mortis’s legion-specific Warmaster’s Beneficence wargear now clarifies that it applies to all attacks made by that Titan in the same phase. This implements the changes made in the FAQ/Errata, so if you’re playing Mortis you won’t need to refer to another document for that rule anymore.
Legio Honorum – “Death Bolts”
The Death Bolts are great for battlegroups that rely on orders, with a stratagem, wargear, and a pair of princeps traits that all combine to help ensure you’ll get the orders you need when you need them. In addition to the Basilius Throne wargear, which lets your Princeps take an order for free and gives you +1 to rolls to issue that same order to other Titans in its maniple, the Stubborn Princeps trait lets your Princeps take an order even when it normally wouldn’t be able to. Being able to ignore Vox Blackout on a key Titan could throw a wrench into your opponent’s plans.
The ability that stands out most to us, though, is Founding Tenets, which allows you to substitute smaller titans for larger ones. There is a bit of fine print on this, however it does let you finally bring a single Warbringer-Nemesis as an optional Titan in an Axiom, Myrmidon or Fortis maniple, which is something we’ve been waiting to see for a long time. This also lets you substitute two Titans into the same maniple, something that no other legion can do, giving you some serious flexibility when building your lists. You won’t be able to get the most out of this until about 1750 points, but bringing a Fortis with two Warlords, a Reaver, and a Warbringer could be a ton of fun.
Legio Osedax – “Cockatrices”
Legio Osedax are a generalist legion with a variety of useful abilities that can support just about any battlegroup you care to build. A lot of Legio-specific Princeps Senioris traits can feel underwhelming compared to universal ones such as Dominant Strategist or Swift Killer, but the Cockatrices have good traits across the board. The one that we’re most looking forward to see in use is Lightning Assault, which allows all titans in their maniple to move before determining first player at the cost of forgoing taking orders that turn. This is similar to Mortis’s March of the Dead stratagem, but saves you 3 stratagem points in exchange for a 6” cap on the movement while still leaving open a chance to be the first player.
The Cockatrices also get access to a pair of stratagems, including Blood Begets Blood, which lets every Osedax Titan in your battlegroup take a shot at the closest visible enemy after one of your Titans is destroyed, making your opponent pay dearly for every blow they strike against you. At 3SP and 2 points of heat for each Titan that uses it, it comes at a hefty cost, but firing out of activation like this is always a powerful effect.
Legio Magna – “Flaming Skulls”
Legio Magna favour the direct approach, preferably applied via a Reaver’s chainfist or melta cannon. The Flaming Skulls two stratagems tie into this. Their Battle Fervour stratagem allows you to issue charge orders to all Flaming Skulls titans without a command check for 3SP, and those Titans also get to reroll hits of 1 on melee weapons that round. If you want a game-changing round of charges, look no further.
Soggy: The amount of times I’ve seen Condit roll a 1 to charge with his melee Legio Vulpa force is heartbreaking.
Condit: How rude.
Legio Magna also get a melta cannon upgrade to extend their short range by 3”, letting you benefit from the Fusion trait up to 15” out, but making the weapon as expensive as a belicosa. Legio Magna Corsairs and Venators will be something to watch out for – that extra 3” makes it that much harder to hide from the Fusion trait, and makes a Flaming Skulls Reaver into one of the best platforms for a melta cannon in the game. Between that and Battle Fervor, we’re always happy to see another close-ranged focused Legio added to the game with their own distinct take.
Legio Vulturum – Gore Crows
The Gore Crows show their prey no quarter and will exploit any weaknesses. When an enemy titan tries to arc-dodge you, the legio-specific stratagem Cull the Weak allows you to fire at it out of turn in exchange for 1 heat.
Condit: Corsair players take note – any time you use your maniple trait, you’re risking getting shot at.
When a Gore Crow deals critical damage in the combat phase, you can activate an unactivated Gore Crow immediately with Scent of Blood and finish their target off. Out-of-sequence activations are always useful, and while this stratagem is expensive at 2SP and 2 heat, jumping ahead in activation like this could let you deny return fire when your opponent wasn’t expecting it.
We would be remiss if we didn’t highlight Storm Frag Shells, which gives some serious punch once you’ve dropped the voids on your target, but at the risk of taking a point of heat for every 1 to hit you roll. Enemies of Vulturum should watch their flanks.
Bair: This is now my second favourite upgrade ever, it’s nuts. Hitting with 6 shots of effective S8 with a Lupercal (or paired Ferrox up close) Warhound is amazing.
Try a Warhound with a pair of VMBs, but only upgrading one with Storm Frags. That will keep the cost down while still giving you some powerful options – into voids, fire the unmodified one first, then declare Maximal on the other if they collapsed. On targets without voids, fire with Maximal first, then follow up with a called shot into the same location with the other. Hopefully, between structure damage and any bonuses from firing from the flank or rear, even strength 4 will be enough to put in a point or two of damage.
Defense of Ryza contains 4 maniples, three of which are new. Much to our surprise, there’s only one maniple that includes a Warbringer Nemesis, and it can only be taken as an optional engine alongside a trio of Warlords. This is somewhat disappointing, as we’d like to see more options that make use of the Warbringer, but at least now there’s a way to bring it in a maniple with every other available class of Titan.
Perpetua Battleline Maniple
Mandatory Elements: 1 Warlord, 2 Reavers
Optional Elements: 2 Reavers
Don’t move and you get an extra repair dice in the repair phase, and you’ll always get Emergency Repairs on a 2+ regardless of whether you moved. This is for when you want to repair better and more reliably. Some Legios such as Oberon, Vulcanum, and Defensor will use this a little more effectively, but it’s not bad for anyone that doesn’t mind sitting still for a turn to get back into the action.
Extergimus Battleline Maniple
Mandatory Elements: 3 Warlords
Optional Elements: 1 Warlord, 1 Warbringer-Nemesis
When you just NEED to kill things better. Ranged weapons only, so sorry for all those Warlord claws, but before firing choose to increase heat on your reactor by 1 (2 if the weapon has 5+ shots) and gain +2S on a weapon firing. The first things that spring to mind here are S9 Macro Gatling, S14 Volcano, S12 Maximal Fire Plasma (poor poor reactor), S11 Mori Quake Cannons (cause you cheaped out by not taking that Belicosa you actually wanted) but also S7 paired gatling on the carapace if you can allow the Heat.
Bair: I’ve wanted a Warlord Heavy maniple where I didn’t have to take something else since day 1, so this is awesome.
Condit: Imagine this in Gryphonicus – three brawler Warlords with dual macro-gatlings and paired gatling blasters, putting out 24 strength 7 shots all re-rolling 1s to hit and 1s to wound, then adding 1 to the wound roll. Not to mention Reckless Maverick. Oof.
Firmus Light Maniple
Mandatory Elements: 1 Reaver, 2 Warhounds
Optional Elements: 2 Reavers
Make your enemy shoot Titans they didn’t want to shoot at! Kind of. Sometimes.
When a Titan in this maniple is targeted the controlling player can try and force that weapon’s shots to target a closer friendly titan instead, as long as the new target isn’t obscured more than 50%. However, a quick pass on a command check by the firing Titan simply bypasses this entirely, so larger engines will almost always be shooting what they want anyway. This might mess up coordinated strikes with Warhounds more reliably, especially since they won’t get the +1 from squadrons as this isn’t an order.
Interestingly, rules-as-written, you declare the target for an attack before you determine whether that target is in arc, which means that with careful placement (and some bad luck on their part) you can force your opponent to shoot at something that’s not in arc, wasting their Titan’s activation entirely. We’re not certain this is an intended result, but if it is, using the Warhounds to flank and run interference for the Reavers is probably the best use of this maniple’s trait.
Dominus Battleforce Maniple
Mandatory Elements: 1 Warlord, 2 Reavers, 1 Questoris/Cerastus
Optional Elements: 2 Warhounds, 1 Questoris/Cerastus
Previously printed in a White Dwarf issue, it’s nice to have this in a book instead of a random issue that many players would have missed out on.
The Dominus leverages vassal Knight houses to act as their bodyguards. Knights in the maniple never benefit from cover due to the ECM defenses they employ, but shots fired at any friendly Titans within 6” suffer a -1 penalty to hit if both the Titan and the Knight were visible to the firing model. Titans in the maniple also have the ability to pass off hits they take to the banners within 6”, which is great for avoiding that last shot dropping your voids or, in very dire circumstances, allowing a Knight to dive in front of that volcano cannon blast fired at an unshielded Titan.
The Dominus is a solid maniple with a useful trait and well-rounded selection of Titans. Its ability is considerably less useful with the advent of Knights Acastus, however; the rules as written only allow you to use the maniple ability with Questoris or Cerastus banners, and with how dominant Acastus are right now, it’s hard to justify. If GW ever update these rules to include Acastus, taking a pair of them will help you create an incredibly durable firebase that can deal with threats from any position, but in the meantime, taking a few full banners of Questoris to use as chaff can help you can get your other Titans into position still intact.
A number of Legios have some synergy with this maniple, but one we want to call out is Legio Fortidus for their ordinarily less-impressive trait, Children of Mars. This trait allows Knight banners to reroll Command checks to avoid being shaken while they are in line of sight of a Dauntless Titan. This will allow you to keep your sacrificial pawns moving and hopefully in the game a bit longer. Also consider Solaria, whose somewhat expensive Cameoline Shrouding will stack with the penalty to hit from this maniple trait, making most attacks against them hit on 5+ and making called shots impossible. They can also swap one or both of the mandatory Reavers for a Warhound, which can free up some extra points and give you more flexibility in building your roster.
Defense of Ryza brings eleven new stratagems for you to surprise your opponent with. The stratagems come in two categories, Tricks and Tactics and Experimental Warfare. Below are some highlights.
Tactical Assessment allows you to reroll for your objective at the end of deployment and pick a new one for two stratagem points. This ability is huge, allowing you get out of an unfortunate roll of Cargo or Retrieval when you are playing a Myrmidon maniple.
Override Signal has the potential to start off some chain reactions as it allows you to add 4 to the result on the Catastrophic damage table to a Titan (friend or foe) within 12” of one of your own. For a single stratagem point this is a steal, although if the roll is low you could end up with a Wild Fire that ends up hurting you more. Just keep in mind you have to choose to use this before the roll.
Experimental Locomotors allow you to upgrade one of your Titans during the first combat phase to use their boosted speed without having to push the reactor. Their experimental nature does mean that you need to roll a D10 every turn to see if they break, at which point they no longer work and cause a devastating hit on your legs. Even with this effect this is a great upgrade for Warhounds whose meagre plasma reactor cannot afford the risk of going into orange on the first activation of the game.
Condit: Well, hello there.
Knight Households have loads to gain from the Defense of Ryza with the addition of six new Households and some expanded mechanics.
Seneschals can now be upgraded into High Kings of a household, giving them a whole raft of useful abilities – 50 points makes their banner immune to being shaken, allows their banner to be automatically issued orders even if you have failed an order elsewhere, and adds an additional stratagem point. If you’re fielding a Household list, you’ll definitely want to bring the High King.
Battle standards have also been expanded. Previously only a single knight in the Seneschal’s banner could carry a battle standard, which had a fixed effect. Now you can have one battle standard per lance and have a broad list of different abilities to pick from.
These have some very flavourful abilities that let you customise your lances even further. Your main battle standard could fly the Shielding Standard for 60 points, allowing banners within 12” to reduce the damage of incoming blast weapons by 2 – making common anti-knight weapons like the Plasma Blastgun unable to score critical hits and drastically improving the survivability of your banners.
Some banners can only be taken by certain allegiances, such as Mark of the Omnissiah which for 40 points allows banners within 12” of the battle standard to forgo their movement to repair damage.
At the lance level you could use the Icon of Conquest for 35 points, which gives +1 strength to all friendly Questoris Oblitus banners within 6” of the standard. This could be used to great effect to allow your Avenger Gatlings to break voids without having to take Coordinated Strike orders.
Crusade Titan Legion
Defense of Ryza also comes with rules that allow you to forge your own narrative and create your own titan legion. This is a refined version of the Crusade Rules originally contained in the July 2019 White Dwarf. These had a few relatively abilities that were a bit too good which have been toned down a bit along with a bunch of new options added such.
You create a custom crusade legio by selecting four traits from a list of Traits, Wargear, and Stratagems. Some options are locked to Traitor or Loyalists, restricting some of the more “out there” combinations. There are a lot of large changes here from the White Dwarf rules set, including the addition of Stratagems and some rules tweaks (Elite Magos, we’re looking at you). There are plenty of choices for each category to choose from, so we’ve taken a look at a few of them.
Engines of War: Choose a chassis: Warlord, Reaver, or Warhound; when constructing a maniple you can choose to swap a mandatory titan for the chassis you’ve chosen for your Legio. This is a nice way of being able to construct a larger variety of Maniples, however we do wish you could use the Warbringer.
Duty and Honour: Loyalist Only. This plays off of the Loyalist ability that allows a Titan to change their order after the damage repair phase, usually restricted to once per game; this lets you use it once per round instead, allowing much greater flexibility.
The Path to Ascension: Blackshield Only. If this is one of your abilities, then a Titan of this Legio can re-roll failed Command Checks whilst within 12” of at least 2 other friendly Titans of the same Legio. This will force you to stay together, but for maniples like a Lupercal or Fortis which already want to, this is just gravy. The other part of this though allows Titans in this Legio to share shields with friendly Titans from the same Legio that are on Shutdown Orders. This might actually lead to some voluntary Shutdown orders issued, as you’ll be able to protect the vulnerable Titan as it cools off.
Marked Prey (3): Played at the beginning of any Strategy Phase, you mark one enemy Titan and your entire Legio adds 1 to both hit rolls and armour rolls against it for the remainder of the game. A very strong play against Ordo Sinister Warlords and other “problem children”, but also very useful if you’re stuck with Glory and Honour for your mission.
Reactionary Fire (2): Overwatch comes to Titanicus. This can be played during the Movement phase of any round when an enemy Titan on Charge Orders is activated. A friendly Titan that has not yet been activated that phase may fire one weapon at the charging Titan, or 2 weapons if they were on a First Fire order. This counts as that Titan’s activation for the phase. It’s a nice counter for when things get up close and personal, as if you’re building a Legio around close quarters combat then you can expect your opponent to issue a few counter-charges against you as well, and this trait would be very useful to punish them for doing so.
Scouting Run (1): Allows you to move with a friendly titan of Scale 6 or lower (looking at you, Warhounds) to make a move at the beginning of the game before rolling to see who is the First Player. However, you cannot push your reactor for further movement or for more turns, and can’t even move more than 6”, but you can purchase multiple times. So take a few Warhounds and get them even closer for the first turn, or run to some cover if need be.
Auxiliary Shield Capacitors: From the original White Dwarf edition for Custom Legios, this trait has come back with a hefty change. A 30 point upgrade on any Titan that allows you to use Voids to Full! without pushing the reactor once per round. Previously this was unlimited use per round, giving you free pushes for reroll 1’s on your shield saves all day long. However, once the shields are collapsed this upgrade is lost for the remainder of the game.
Multiple Warhead Launchers: Also an upgrade with a hefty change since White Dwarf, and one of very few weapons to have limited ammo in the game. This 20 point upgrade is fitted to any Apocalypse Launcher or Paired Apocalypse Launchers and adds 5 to the Dice number and gains the Rapid Trait but also imposes the Limited (2) trait, meaning you can fire this weapon twice for the whole game. It’s sure to rip shields apart for those couple of shots, so this could find use on a Legio closing the gap quickly.
It would be rude not to give an example of what this looks like, so we’ve created our own Warlord Wednesdays Titan Legio and as usual a 1500 point list for you to try out at home.
- Legio Trait: Elite Magos
- Legio-Specific Wargear: Tracking Gyroscopes
- Legio-Specific Wargear: Fusion Missiles
- Legio-Specific Stratagem: Enduring Gods
Legio Mercurii Battlegroup – 1485pts
Extergimus Battleline Maniple – 1485 pts
Warlord Titan “Tractuosus” – 510 pts
- Wargear – Tracking Gyroscopes
- Wargear – Fusion Missiles
- Apocalypse Missile Launchers
- Belicosa Volcano Cannon
- Mori Quake Cannon
Warlord Titan “Brevis Ursa” – 475 pts
- Wargear – Tracking Gyroscopes
- Wargear – Fusion Missiles
- Apocalypse Missile Launchers
- Mori Quake Cannon
- Mori Quake Cannon
Warlord Titan “Johnus Conditus” – 500 pts
- Princeps Senioris – Devoted Servant of the Machine
- Wargear – Tracking Gyroscopes
- Paired Gatling Blasters
- Macro Gatling Blaster
- Sunfury Plasma Annihilator
We built Legio Mercurii to make use of the Tracking Gyroscopes wargear, which improves the firing arcs legion’s Warlords’ carapace-mounted weapons to 45-degree arcs. This lets their fire-support Warlords set up in the backfield and take First Fire orders nearly every turn without having to worry about anyone hiding from their AML barrages, and helps their brawler Warlords get the most use out of their shorter-ranged carapace armament.
The Extergimus Battleline Maniple lets us bring 3 Warlords to get the most use out of this wargear, and has the added bonus of letting us spend heat to pump the strength of the AMLs and gatling blasters up to strength 6 and 7 respectively, making them legitimate threats even after voids drop. As an added bonus, mori quake cannons can be pushed to strength 11, macro gatlings can go up to strength 9, and if you want to all but guarantee a critical, a belicosa can fire at an impressive strength 14 (though you’ll have to take a heat on top of rolling for the Draining Trait).
In order to make the additional heat from the Extergimus’s trait more manageable, we’ve taken Elite Magos. Even though it’s been reined in from the version that appeared in White Dwarf, it’s still useful, particularly when you need to be all but certain of venting at least one heat every round.
In order to get the most use out of the AMLs, we’ve also added in Fusion Missiles, which lets you choose to either fire them as normal or fire a smaller volley with the Fusion trait. Ideally, you’ll get the +1 to hit the first round or two to maximize the number of void saves onto your chosen target(s), then try to keep your opponents in the 10”-30” range band to drop 3 strength 6 shots that roll d10s on the armor roll.
Finally, we’ve chosen the legio-specific stratagem Enduring Gods. This list is going to run hot, and with only 3 Titans, we want to make sure they stick around as long as possible. Being able to guarantee Emergency Repairs on a crucial turn will let you vent the heat you’ve built up from the Extergimus maniple trait and repair your brawler to keep its voids up and remove critical damage. Then, if you pass a 3+ Command check (or a 2+ for your princeps), you’ll still get to both move and shoot as normal.
This is just one of the many options you can build from these rules, and if you wanted to try something similar, you could tweak these to your taste. Instead of Enduring Gods, Opening Salvo would give you a very powerful opening turn, albeit at the cost of making your Titans run even hotter than they already were. Or you could take the Duty and Honour legion trait to have one of your fire-support Titans switch from First Fire to Split Fire each turn to help optimize where you’re putting your AML fire. Instead of the Fusion Missiles wargear, you could take Reactor Fetters to help vent off your excess heat, although you’d have to re-tune the list to make room – replacing one or both of the belicosas with a mori would be one way.
There are a ton of options here that will help you build the legion you want to play, whether it’s a stand-and-shoot force like Legio Mercurii, an aggressive close-combat legion, or anything in between. The changes they’ve made since the original rules in White Dwarf have reined things in, and we anticipate that the combinations you’ll be able to build will be closer to on par with the existing legions.
The title of this book isn’t just for show – Defence of Ryza includes a solid chunk of fluff that will help you create narrative battles set during the siege of Ryza. This is backed up by six narrative missions that will let you play out some several of the decisive battles that took place during that campaign.
Notably absent from this book are any campaign rules – if you’re looking for tools to generate a campaign to tie together the games you and your club play, you’ll have to look to Doom of Molech or Shadow & Iron for those. However, the narrative missions and other info in this book could provide some interesting fodder for games in a campaign using those rules.
One thing we’re particularly excited about here is the first appendix: Battlefields of Ryza. These are rules for playing in specific environments that are similar to the different battlefields in Shadow & Iron. The standout one here is Ryza Secundus, a massive moon-sized space station that you can set your battles in. Playing on the space station is not without risk: stray shots have a chance to punch a hole in the hull of the station, exposing the various combatants to the void and violently pulling every Titan on the board toward the hole that was opened up. The various environments are extremely flavorful, and we’re stoked to take our legions for a walk in some new locations.
This book rules. As far as we’re concerned, it’s as close to a must-buy as possible for any Titanicus player. If you’re just getting into the game and haven’t settled on a legion yet, this should probably be the first supplement you pick up after the core rules. If you’ve already got a force, what use you’ll get out of it honestly depends on the force you’re running and what sort of games you play. Knight Household players in particular will want to grab this, as the new banners and rules for fielding your Household’s High King provide some more room to give some character to those forces that was honestly somewhat lacking before. The new stratagems are all interesting and include some really powerful options, and you won’t want to play a game without the allegiance ability for your battlegroup.
The only thing stopping us from recommending this book without reservation is that most of the new maniples seem somewhat lackluster. The Perpetua and Dominus are fine, but not particularly exciting, and the Firmus honestly seems a bit weak unless you’ve got some way to reliably impose a penalty to your opponent’s Command checks. The Extergimus stands out here, providing a way to bring a triple Warlord list without having to replace a Titan, not to mention being the first maniple that lets you include both a Warlord and Warbringer, and its trait will let you deal absolutely staggering amounts of damage as long as you’ve got the reactor capacity to keep things moving.
We also want to give a shout-out to the rules team here – while there are a few things here and there that are a little ambiguous, we didn’t see a lot of things that are really screaming for an FAQ or errata. They’ve done a great job of writing these rules in a way that will be as straightforward as possible to apply.
All in all, this book is an incredible set of options that you’ll want to pick up as soon as possible. We’re excited to get these new options to the table, and are only more excited to see what’s coming next.