Following my review of the Matched Play section of the new Fyreslayer book I’m taking a look at the Path to Glory rules, how they affect the army during a campaign, and the cool specific quests and upgrades they have access to.
Vaults of Gold
Fyreslayer armies during a Path to Glory campaign have an additional mechanic for gold which has to be kept track of throughout. The amount of gold you have hoarded can give your warlord bonus renown after each game, so long as they were present in the battle!
- 0 – 10,000 Gold = no bonus renown
- 10,001 – 50,000 Gold = 1 bonus renown
- 50,001 + Gold = 2 bonus renown
You can also spend this gold in a few ways, the timing of which changes depending on what you’re buying.
- Hold a Ghuzfest – You can pay 100 gold for each unit if your army before a middle or higher tier battle to buy them each a round of magmalt ale! If you do then each unit is treated as having a Bravery of 10 for that battle. Depending how many units you’re fielding this could end up being expensive, but if you’re fielding larger units of berzerkers then having that higher bravery could really pay off.
- Delve Beneath the Mountain – After a battle but before making an exploration roll for your army you can spend a hefty 10,000 gold to fund an exploratory expedition instead. If you do then you don’t roll a D66 but instead roll a single D6 and add 60 to result, automatically giving you a result of 61-66. This will give you one of the Fyreslayer specific ones automatically then but more on those below!
- Forge a Mighty Artefact – During step 7 after a battle you can spend even more gold, 20,000 to be exact, to forge an artefact of power of your choice, immediately adding it to your roster.
So how do you actually get gold? By completing mercenary contracts. After a battle during step 7 you can generate and receive a mercenary contract and completing it will reward you in gold and modify your reputation (not always in a positive way!). These contracts can come from any grand alliance as well, not just Order, the Fyreslayers hardly care who is paying them!
Your army starts with a reputation score of 0 and this is able to become a negative number depending on the modifier that applies from the contract you complete.
First you must determine who is paying out your contact. Roll 2D6 and consult the table, adding your reputation score to the result to determine if it’s a Chaos, Destruction, Death, or Order alliance paymaster that’s hired your force. If the result is 2 or less than it’s Chaos, 3-4 is Destruction, 5-6 is Death and 7+ is Order. This means if you have a positive reputation then it’s impossible to take on a contract from a Chaos faction, which is a good thing since those contracts also reduce your reputation the most! There’s even a cool little table to generate a name for the paymaster of your contract.
After you have your paymaster you generate the quarry of the contract. You roll a D6 and consult the chart lining up your result with your paymaster’s allegiance. For example if your paymaster is from Death and you roll a 5 then your quarry is Destruction and completing the contract will give you D6x1000 Gold and +1 reputation. You can choose to accept or decline the contract, but you do get to roll the amount of gold first, knowing what you’re walking into or turning down before deciding. You can only have 1 active contract at any given time!
To complete the contract then you have to win a major victory against the faction of your quarry. If you do then you receive the full benefits of your contract during step 7 of aftermath. You can then immediately generate a new contract!
Reputation doesn’t only affect who your paymaster is, it can also allow you to haggle for better pay after your contracts if positive, or if it’s a negative score then it can have drastic effects. If your score is positive then after you complete a contract you can try and haggle for additional gold by rolling a D6. If you roll a natural 1 then you’ve soured the experience with your paymaster and still receive the gold reward as normal but instead of applying the normal reputation modifier you subtract D6 from your reputation instead. On a roll of 2+ though you add your current reputation and receive additional gold depending on your roll which can be up to D6x1,000 more!
However if your reputation is a negative score of -10 or worse then whenever you roll an “Ancient Roads” territory it’s instead treated as “Barren Wastes”. After you’ve completed a contract and applied the modifier and it is still -10 or lower then you roll a D6 for each unit you have on your order of battle and on the roll of a 1 that unit deserts you – you remove it from your roster; you also cannot add any units to your roster while your score is -10 or lower.
So, taking a contract with a large negative modifier on your contract just might not be worth the payout and often will be better declining the contract, denying you a payout of gold but at least not taking your force into ruination!
In addition to the quests you can choose from in the core book you can choose one of the 4 quests instead:
Temper the Flames
When you choose this quest you pick 1 Magmadroth unit from your order of battle that does not yet have a mount trait and choose one for it to add to your quest log. After a Path to Glory battle you complete the quest if that Magmadroth killed any enemy units during the battle. When you’ve completed the quest then you can add that mount trait to your vault but can only ever be given to the Magmadroth that was used for this quest and if this Magmadroth is ever removed from your order of battle then the mount trait is lost as well.
Find the Lost Hold
While you have this quest, at the end of each Path to Glory battle you roll a D6 for each of your units wholly within enemy territory and for each 6 you find 1 clue for the lost magmahold. Once you have found 3 clues then you can play the “Reclaim the Hold” path to glory battle plan and if you win a major or minor victory you complete the quest, the rewards for which are listed on the battleplan (below).
Settle a Grudge
You get to pick this quest if your opponent won a major victory against you; make a note of your opponent’s name and their faction on your log. You complete this quest if your opponent’s army was from the same Grand Alliance and you win a major victory against them. If that faction was from the same Grand Alliance as the faction written in your log you receive D6 Glory, if the faction was the same then you receive 2D6 and if it was also the same person and faction you get 3D6 instead.
Slay Bitter Enemies
When you finish a Path to Glory battle and you win a major victory against Skaven or Gloomspite Gitz you complete the quest. When completed each unit in your army that was not destroyed earns 1 extra renown and if the enemy General was killed by attacks made by your General then your General receives an extra 5 renown as well.
As with the other books that have come out you get a set of veteran abilities for your units to gain as they gain experience in battle; and can be chosen in place of the ones from the core book. All of them are very thematic and it’s great to continually see unique abilities given to different armies, it really does make the narrative feel a step above while being able to make your force your own. Like any other veteran ability they’re all used once per game and you cannot use any more than 1 veteran ability in a given turn.
The unit becomes the honour guard of one of the heroes on your order of battle, swearing oaths to the hero. The unit can use this ability while wholly within 9” of that hero to gain +1 to both hit and wound rolls until the end of the phase (shooting or combat). Taking a unit of Hearthguard Berzerkers already acting as Royal Retinue to a Runefather or Runeson can just take it one step further which is really cool, getting +1 to hit and wound is no joke either at the right time!
Stubborn to the End
The unit gains a 6+ ward save until the end of the phase, activated when chosen as the target of an attack. So you don’t get to use this in a hero phase to try and negate mortal wounds from spells but from either shooting or melee attacks instead, which is nice, but the army does have a lot of sources for 6+ wards already. Maybe solid on a unit of Auric Hearthguard if you have any on your order of battle or Vulkite Berzerkers.
Speciality weapons etched with runes that can be activated in the shooting or combat phase to improve the rend of that units’ weapons for the phase. This works so well on Vulkite Berzerkers with dual handaxes, being able to throw them into combat on a turn that you haven’t used the Rune of Awakened Steel to still be hitting at rend -1 makes them a threat for more turns of the game. Alternatively using it in the same turn as the Rune of Awakened Steel for an incredibly hard hitting unit that can fight on death could really turn the tide of battle.
Gilded Throwing Axes
One thing I’ve always loved is that the entirety of this army goes to war with throwing axes. A lot of throwing axes. Where they store them can be up for debate, but with the new warscrolls not hitting and wounding on 4+ they’re actually solid attacks again. Taking it one step further you can equip a unit with these speciality throwing axes which once per game are Damage 2, which is frankly just incredible. Imagine a unit of 30 Vulkite Berzerkers close enough to all throw them at something, using all out attack to get even more hits or the Rune of Farsight and just deal upwards of 60 damage to something. With throwing axes. I love it.
Relentless Grudge Settlers
One of the obvious downsides to Fyreslayers is their speed, there are tricks around it like Runesmiters being able to tunnel a unit in but then they have a 9” charge to make, which just isn’t likely. Well, unless they’ve been given this trait which changes their charge to 3D6 instead of 2D6 once per game. Bringing a unit up with a Runesmiter and being able to reliably charge deep into enemy lines will cause just the right amount of chaos to settle your grudges.
Worth their Weight in Ur-Gold
This unit has decided that the normal amount of Ur-Gold embedded into their flesh wasn’t quite enough, so they’ve added more to be closer to Grimnir. What it does is allow the unit to benefit from the enhanced effect of the current Ur-Gold rune making them that much faster or hit that much harder!
It’s not just your units that have a chance to gain experience and become better versions of themselves, your heroes too can use renown and glory to be upgraded, giving them powerful magmadroth mounts or advancing their command of your lodge.
The upgrade completely changes the Hero’s warscroll, removing their current one from your order of battle and replacing it with a new one depending on what upgrade you’ve given them.
Runesons are able to upgrade to a Runefather to lead your lodge if you don’t have any Runefathers on your order of battle (if you just never had one or if they have recently died). Any of your Runefathers, Runesons, or Runesmiters can be given a magmadroth mount as well for the small cost of 30 or 35 renown and 6 glory. If they had a core enhancement no longer allowed to them then they can simply choose another and they can now choose mount traits as well!
As mentioned above if you have taken on the Find the Lost Hold quest and also recovered 3 or more clues then you can use this battelplan for your game. The scenario has your fyreslayer army seeking out a lost magmahold, lost during the age of Chaos that has become overrun with enemy forces blocking your way to the master forge.
Tunnel Fighting rules (but not Monstrous Denizen) from the core book are used for the game which changes how you fight drastically:
- The range of missile weapons is capped at 12” maximum
- Units are not allowed to Fly
- At the start of each hero phase each player rolls a dice and on a 6 can choose for a cave in to occur or for stalactites to fall from the low ceiling; this either creates a small area on the table where units cannot be set up or move onto this area or deals a mortal wound to a few units.
- Gives a unique command ability which any hero can use at the end of the enemy movement phase choosing a unit within 12” of the commanding hero. Roll 2D6 and if you roll higher than the distance between the hero and the targeted unit it suffers D3 mortal wounds.
The Fyreslayers set up along the short edges of the table and the enemy army, the desecrators, hold the centre along with 3 objectives down the centre of the table. The desecrator’s army is split between 2 equal parts and the reserves set up from any table edge more than 3” away from enemy units making charging out of reserve extremely easy! The objectives are the master forge and 2 braziers which the fyreslayer player needs to get close to to ignite the fires before the end of the game.
Very thematic and very fun with a lot of twists that can come up in the game between the tunnel fighting and reserve rules.
During a Path to Glory campaign you can arrange your units into Warscroll battalions, which are not available to armies in matched play games, instead of Core battalions. There’s 3 smaller battalions that form together to make a Grand Fyrd which grants your army an ability. The 3 smaller ones unfortunately don’t grant any extra rules to make use of, and the combined Grand Fyrd is only a minimum of 1060 points to field actually too with: Runefather, Runemaster, Battlesmith, Runeson, Runesmiter, 1 unit Hearthguard Berzerkers, 1 unit Vulkite Berzerkers, and 1 unit Auric Hearthguard without reinforcing any units. You’re able to add a lot more units to that as well and can have the Runefather, Runesmiter, or Runeson be on a Magmadroth as well!
You gain the ability for the Heroes in the battalion to issue the Fierce Counter-Attack order multiple times in the same phase, giving multiple of your units the Fight First ability, so long as the unit receiving the order is also in the battalion. A very strong ability allowing you to be charged and still hit first on a turn where it really matters!
Overall I really like the Path to Glory rules for this edition of Age of Sigmar, they’re more involved and feel a lot more thematic to the individual armies so far. As a Fyreslayer player primarily I love to see the mercenary contracts and the gold and reputation mechanics for the army, rewarding and punishing the player’s force for the contracts they choose to take on.
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