With more reporting from Warhammer Fest, here’s Thundercloud’s run down of the Warcry preview.
The next and final Warcry box of the season was revealed, with Stormcast Questor Soul Sworn led by a Relictor fighting a band of ghouls called the Royal Beastflayers, who include ghouls engorged by eating various large beasts and led by a vampire. The terrain includes a Seraphon Realmshaper engine, and this makes a nice imposing centrepiece to the set.
The Stormcast are very much 3rd generation Stormcast, with the sleeker Thunderstrike armour and scale mail. The models look great, and appear to be a fairly elite warband with a lot of very big whacking weapons to splatter things in melee.
The Royal Beastflayers have numbers and weird monsters on their sides. Offal hounds are ghouls cast into a pit for displeasing the ghoulish aristocracy, and fed on various offal and bits and bobs, who start thinking they are hounds and mutating accordingly. The unit adds a lot of individuality to ghouls, and gives the faction something beyond ghouls, bigger ghouls and ghouls with wings.
Always worth remembering that these bands can bring in allies or Underworlds models, and thus can have some real diversity.
The book includes a new campaign and rules for multiplayer games, giving players more tools for playing the games they want.
GW showed their road map for War Cry for the next 12 months, and it was very interesting. Warcry is receiving a new Starter Set in the summer, which will be the entry level product for new players, using existing models and some new terrain. This product will be £60-70 according to the presentation, and is a product pitched for new players specifically not veterans.
Following the new starter, Warcry will move to a release model based on releasing individual faction boxes, not big boxed sets. This may be due to AoS not having another terrain range ready for release, or waiting for an edition change to move to another realmscape, or because the Warcry boxes don’t sell as quickly as Kill Team boxes.
These individual faction boxes will not be more Chaos Cults, and will start with two order and two destruction factions in the autumn, followed by another order and a death faction in the winter. I’m really looking forward to the move to individual boxes, and Warcry (with the cards covering everything you need in the box) is a good way of doing this!
The Q&A was not covered in the Warhammer Community article, and I think GW were a little surprised by how much enthusiasm there was for Warcry compared to Underworlds (where a question was asked about competitive play returning) and LotR (where a question was asked about where the rest of the LotR preview was that GW couldn’t answer for legal reasons). Several points were brought up worth repeating:
Fans asked for a new Tome of Champions with updates for the Underworlds models, including Underworld models that have left production (such as Mollog’s Mob) being brought back as mail order products. GW said that they’d take that away, and there may be updates either online or as a book (similar to the Compendium) but did not confirm this. GW do seem well aware that the second a model is released for AoS or Underworlds the Warcry players want rules for it.
Fans asked for more updates in White Dwarf (fighter cards for Underworlds specifically). GW were vague about this (possibility due to the White Dwarf lead times).
Fans asked for Mord-Cry in various wordings, and GW were very non-committal regarding that.
Fans asked for Old World models to get Warcry rules, and GW said that it was a separate studio and they don’t cross pollinate. Fans suggested sneaking in and nicking any good stuff.
Fans asked about balance between AoS and specific Warcry factions. GW said that they don’t have as much data on matched play for Warcry as they do for, say, Kill Team, but they would look at balance updates in the future. Authors note – this is likely due to Warcry being a game played much more on a narrative basis than competitively, and Warcry tournaments have a reputation for being chilled out with a heavy emphasis on hobby and fun.
Fans welcomed GW just not doing more Chaos Cult warcry factions for a while, and GW agreed that other factions deserve some time in the sun.
Warcry is continuing to get support – but with the rules in a very good place with second edition, all that’s really needed is a balance updates and regular injections of new factions to shake things up. The fans have a seemingly insatiable demand for every fantasy miniature GW produce to be brought into Warcry, which also underlines the problem GW have with gauging it’s success. Kill team can be tracked through the large boxed sets and faction box sales and all the matched play events. Warcry is much more able to fly under the radar with people using AoS miniatures and playing narratively at home, or buying Underworlds minis and using them.
Perhaps more events organised by the community will show the popularity of the game, as from GW’s point of view it isn’t as popular as Kill Team but I think that’s very much down to a different player base and culture. What do you think Warcry needs for the next season? Drop us a line at Contact@Goonhammer.com and let us know what you think!