Tuesday, 14 August 2018

Titan Owner Interview- James B., Ignum Mortis


Today, we get to pick the brain of James, owner of Ignum Mortis, a very lovely Legio Atarus Reaver that not only came together swiftly, but epitomizes the Firebrands aesthetic.


TOC: It's a pleasure to have you in the hotseat today James. Ready to talk shop?

James: I sure am!

TOC: We don't see the Firebrands too often, even though they're one of the most well-known of the Collegia Titanica forces. What made you choose them?

James: That’s a good question, with a funny answer. It was their decal sheet! I didn’t know anything about them, but I loved the symbols on the decal sheets so I chose them.

TOC: It was the flaming sword, wasn't it?

James: Yeah, I thought it was really cool-looking and unique.





TOC: How much have you learned about Atarus since picking them? And did the choice of Legio come before or after picking your Titan?

James: Oh I became a quick study of them and their background, which made me fall in even more love with them. I’ve always wanted a Reaver. So when I had the opportunity, I grabbed it!

TOC: Is that why you started with the Reaver? Many hobbyists feel that of the three Titans, the Reaver is the most difficult to build due to its legs and center of gravity.

James: Yep, it’s so iconic that I didn’t care.  I had to have one. I didn’t find it too hard to build. It was the largest Forge World kit I’ve built so far. I just took my time. The Omnissiah blessed me with a great kit.

TOC: “So far” seems to imply a Warlord is in the cards. What can we expect to see in the future from you?

James: Another Reaver for sure, a Warhound, and a Warlord.  My friends and I are on a mission to play epic in 40k scale.

TOC: That will be quite the Maniple. Has any of it been inspired by any of the lore you read? And EPIC in 40k scale would be amazing. I imagine the upcoming Adeptus Titanicus must be an exciting prospect.

James: No, the maniple is more because it would just be a legendary game to play in. And yes, I’m super excited about Adeptus Titanticus. I CAN’T WAIT!!

TOC: What excites you most about the future of Titans? We still have weapons that Forge World needs to create for our existing kits, there are rumors of a new chassis of Battle Titan coming out in the next year or so, the Secutarii have rules once more, and Adeptus Titanicus is coming.

James: Man that’s a good question. The thing that excites me most about Titans is more of them. That may sound funny, but the more that are out there, the better for the whole community. Owning a Titan or more is great. Finding out there are other people with them out there is even better.  As far as options and new chassis go, it’s all very exciting news/rumors. It’s a great time to be in the hobby.

TOC: You mentioned finding others with Titans, which is one of TOC's aims. Is that what brought you to the club, or did something else create that path for you?

James: That’s exactly what brought me to the club. I stalked the page forever, way before I purchased my Titan. I loved looking at everyone’s finished Titans.

TOC: Many consider a Titan to be the largest canvas we have in our hobby, and the penultimate piece of a collection. Is that what drew you into Titan ownership, or was it something else?

James: Yes, that’s what drew me to it. It’s so 40k! When you put it on the table, it helps spin the narrative that it’s a larger engagement going on. It really helps drive the narrative.





TOC: And drives a battlefield. Titans can turn the tide of a game just as much as they do in the lore. What do you hope to get most out of Titan ownership? And what do you hope to be able to add to it?

James: My big hope from my Titan ownership is inspiration. I want to inspire other hobbyists just like I was inspired. I want hobbyists that believe that they can aspire to larger games that include God-Engines. I hear so many people say they can’t ever get one. Yes they can, and I’m proof of that!  The thing that I would want to add to it is simple. MORE! Not just for me, but in general. I want more people joining the TOC, I want more games that are God-Engine friendly. So hopefully my activity in my local area will drive that.

TOC: I imagine then that the Chapter Approved points increase from 2017 was a bitter blow to see them in more games. And you say that you're proof of being able to get one. What advice would you give to those that think they can't afford a Titan?

James: Nah, we just play bigger games! The best advice that I can give someone is to just save a little at a time. It doesn’t matter how long it takes, as long as you’re doing it consistently.

TOC: It's the same way I did my Warlord; or, as one TOC member has previously called it, "being responsible." What started the love of Titans and wanting one?

James:  Being responsible is exactly it. It started with Epic, then the old Armorcast ones. Seeing a Forge World Titan in the flesh, just put me over the edge, and I had to have one.

TOC: And then the rest becomes history for you. You lurk around TOC for a while, save money patiently, rip the bandage off, and buy a Titan.  Going back into history briefly, what inspired you to get it done so quickly? And how did you go about deciding how you wanted to paint the Titan's scheme?

James: Yep! Now I HAVE to have more!  We have an annual gaming event at my house called Week of War. It’s a week of nothing but 40k, maybe another game here and there. But it’s 99.5 percent 40k this year; we decided to step it up. I quickly painted mine up, and my buddy purchased two.  As far as the paint scheme, lots of Google searches.

TOC: You've definitely come up with something that fits the Firebrands. Maybe some tutorials will be in order later on? The carapace sword stands out really well on the Reaver.  It pops, but doesn't dominate the model. How did you achieve that effect?

James: Thanks, sure I can do a step by step. I can’t take credit for the sword; it’s a decal from the Forge World sheet.

TOC: Just applied right to it? No special effects on your end?

James: No, not really. I airbrushed the shield, highlighted it, and slid the decal on. The clear coat did the rest.

TOC: So, what comes next for you, Ignum Mortis, and the Legio Atarus?

James: The banners for the Reaver and then the new Warhound and Reaver. The goal is by this time next year I’ll have it all done. You guys will be the first to get updates!



A great start to the banners.


TOC: We look forward to seeing them. And you've handled the hotseat quite well. Of course, we have to ask our traditional and favorite question at the end. Any shoutouts, words of wisdom, or bellowing challenges?

James: Have fun, first and foremost. And I wish to thank Randy Bertok and Jerrome Miller for being all in for the Weeks of War; this is going to be our 5th anniversary!

<warhorn blaring> Any foul Xenos or Heretic engines roaming the north Texas area need to make sure their void shields are charged! The Ignum Mortis will exert her wrath upon you!!

TOC: Fine words, Princeps! Thank you for your time today, it's been a pleasure.

James: That was fun. Thanks for having me. I’m still coaxing Randy to register his engine. It’s beautiful!

Sunday, 12 August 2018

KS00016- Lance of Rebirth, Freeblades

Sir Trey of Louisiana joins the ranks of the Scions today with his Banner of Freeblades. - TOC

Banner Name: Lance of Rebith 
Knight Seneschal: Freeblade Knight Errant, "Rex", Thermal Cannon, Reaper Chainsword, and Heavy Stubber
Knight Bondswoman: Armiger Warglaive, "Celana", Thermal Spear and Reaper Chaincleaver
Knight Bondsman: Armiger Warglaive, "Kayde", Thermal Spear and Reaper Chaincleaver

Knight House: Lance of Rebirth

Owner: Trey B.
Location: Louisiana, USA

Comments:



Rex and his Bondsman and Bondswoman

The Knight Errant known as Rex is a Freeblade that has a very interesting relationship with the battlefield. This warrior has been known to set his sights on a target and not stop until he has accomplished his personal goal, always getting into the fight. To date, the Freeblade’s most noteworthy kill occurred while assisting the Grey Knights, the Orks of Waagh Deff Dakka, and the Lions of Gladius, a successor chapter of the Dark Angels. During the battle he fought against the Orks of an unnamed Waagh and the Aeldari of an unknown Craftworld.


Rex set his sights upon a Squiggoth that somehow earned the unfortunate name of Squiggles after the battle. The Freeblade strode across the battlefield to meet the beast, which was transporting a unit of Tankbustas that would destroy his allies’ armored support. Rex met the Squiggoth head on, inflicting deep wounds upon the beast when he met the beast head on and rammed his reaper chainsword down its throat. The damage done was so great that his Knight could not be cleaned of the gore, requiring an entirely new coat of paint.

While no one knows the true reason why the Freeblade has recently been spotted with two Armigers in his company speculation is spreading. Aside from Rex himself, only Celana knows his true intention.

When it comes to the two Armiger Warglaives that accompany Rex on his crusade, he places the most trust into Celana. Before she was a pilot, Celana was merely a commoner of the Imperium. It wasn’t until a faithful day when Celana was given the chance to prove her abilities. Her homeworld was invaded by an unnamed Chaos warband led by a Renegade Knight. Many guardsmens took up arms in attempts to hold off their attacks but the knight’s battle cannon tore throw the wall into their city. A contingency of the warband made it through the destroyed section and attacked civilians. 


Celana decided to take a stand and urged her fellow commoners to take a stand as a small resistance force. The force took a heroic stand, rallying behind Celana, all in hopes to give their fellow brothers and sisters a surviving chance. Just when all hope seemed to be lost as the Renegade knight closed in on the city, Celana laid eyes upon her city’s savior, the Knight Errant known as Rex. It spurred Celana onward to hold the line. After Rex’s defeat of the fallen knight and helping to ensure the safety of the city, Rex exited his machine. Celana looked upon him in a look of admiration and deep respect. When Rex asked for the leader of that noble stand, the surviving members all pointed out Celana. Impressed and proud of the courage and battle prowess in a tight situation, Rex offered her a chance to join him and pilot an Armiger Warglaive. Celana accepted without hesitation. 


Celana, Rex's first apprentice and the only person he really confides in.

Unlike Celana, Kayde was trained from a young age to pilot his Armiger alongside his brother as part of a noble Household. For Kayde, it was all in hopes to one day take over his father’s knight despite his low-ranking status. While Kayde showed immense potential and aptitude, his age and personality made him cocky and arrogant.

The young pilot approached every battle thinking himself invincible with his Armiger and it cost him dearly. As Kayde fought in a battle with his brother, they were assaulted by an Ork raiding party that sought to take the Armigers for their own twisted schemes. Kayde held his own, battling as a solo warrior instead of with his hunting partner. Kayde’s brother, however, paid the price for this arrogance, succumbing to a unit of Mega-Nobs who tore the Armiger apart. 

Kayde, "Squire"

Kayde continued to fight unaware that Rex and Celana had been observing the battle and knew he was about to be over-run. The Freeblade and his bondswoman jumped into the fray, mopping up the rest of the Orks. Following the battle, Kayde boasted and gloated about his survival, unaware of his brother’s fate. Celana broke the news to Kayde about his brother’s death, and was shamed further when his Household disowned him and told him to atone for his sins or not return at all. Sensing an opportunity, Rex told Kayde that he the Freeblade and his bondswoman, and that Rex would teach him humility and respect. In the time Kayde has been with Rex the Freeblade refuses to call Kayde by his name, referring to him only as “Squire.”




Adeptus Titanicus- The Warlord Kit



Ever built a big resin Warlord from Forge World?  It’s a real joy and an honor in the hobby.  Ever been unable to do so because of the cost?  The plastic Warlord for Adeptus Titanicus will let you build the Warlord you’ve always dreamed of.  Just smaller than a Questoris Knight, less than the price of one, but still a Warlord nonetheless.



THE BOX

You know you’re getting a premium Citadel product when the box looks amazing.  First off, the cover isn’t the usual black and blue facing that most of your newer Citadel products come in; it’s an ENTIRE piece of artwork unto itself.  The back cover features the actual model itself, along with close ups of the weapons and head included in the kit.  We know that different weapon and head options will be available later on, and this back cover almost seems to indicate that each box may carry different loadouts as time goes on (assuming a weapon/head sprue isn’t made available later on.)

The instruction booklet is a close cousin to that found in the Forge World Warlord, though clearly of a different style.  The booklet is full color and explains everything you need to know about building your Warlord.  It also includes paint schemes and decal numbering schemes for five of the most popular Titan Legions (Mortis, Atarus, Gryphonicus, Fureans, and Astorum.)




Not a detailed painting guide, but enough to get you a start on the schemes.


The Warlord comes on three sprues, each designed in a specialized manner.  One sprue contains the Knight’s superstructure and defensive weapons.  Another sprue is almost completely armor panels (with exception to the shoulder brackets and main reactor housing).  The final sprue contains the weapons and two head options (both Mars-Alpha variants with two visor options).  The details on the kit are extremely well done and there are few differences between the Forge World kit and the Citadel mini kit.






THE BUILD

One thing that this Citadel miniature lacks in terms of posing is the locking lugs included in many of the current kits that help less experienced modelers keep their prized models posed well.  The legs on this kit will require patience, dry fitting, planning, and a little bit of skill.  Be aware of that as you go through the build process.  However, owners of actual resin Titans are familiar with all of these things and should have little issue with their Warlord build.

If you’ve ever built a Knight or a Titan, you’re in good hands.  The Warlord kit goes together extremely well and is so well designed that it’s about the same build quality as the new Dominus-class Knights that recently came out.  This kit honestly came out great and so closely resembles the build of the Forge World Warlord that it took me back in time.  It really is a pleasure to work on, and far less stressful than its resin counterpart.  While not a true replica of the exact parts of the larger model (which we can all be grateful for when it comes to the hip piston rings), it really follows the legacy of the original.  



And don’t forget the magnets!  There are pre-designed holes in the upper arm, shoulder brackets, and carapace weapons so that you can magnetize your Titan for quick swap outs later on.  There are no magnet locations in the elbows and it’s unclear how future weapon options will work (whether we are provided the whole arm or just the gun at the elbow).  



Games Workshop has certainly done a great job with this kit. 

Saturday, 11 August 2018

Adeptus Titanicus- Force Building for Matched Play


This is a quick article is about how many models you will need for each sized force in the matched play section of the rules.

Units in Adeptus Titanicus do not have weapons included in the base points cost (except the Warlord Point defence weapons).  Players will purchase an individual Titan/Banner, and its weapons, separately in-game.

There are three scales of battle for Matched Play described in the core rules. The smallest is Skirmish (under two hours play), medium-sized is Confrontation (Around two hours play), and the largest is the Epic Clash (Two to three hours play). 


Halving the contents of the Grand Master box gets you a Skirmish-level force, which is a small (three knight) Questoris Knight Banner and a Warlord.  Fielding the contents of a whole Grand Master box gives you a mid-ranged Confrontation-scale force.  Adding in a brace of Warhounds and a Reaver will give you a sizable Epic Clash force.

We hope this gives you an idea of Titan force building.

-TOC

Check back on the blog tomorrow for even more Adeptus Titanicus content, including a big unboxing.

Adeptus Titanicus- The Roles of the Questoris Knights

This article gives a brief overview of the Knights from the new Games Workshop game, Adeptus Titanicus (2018).

If you jump in with the Grand Master Edition, you will be the proud owner of six (6) of these mighty war machines, which will give you a full Banner.  Mighty as they are, however, their power pales against the fearsome might of the Titans.

(We used my old Imperial Knights from the Old Titan Legion Box set.  I painted them specially to game with the Titans.  With them is a review copy of the Warlord Battle Titan. - Hertford)

 Bad positioning of Knights

Good positioning of Knights

We have currently identified four roles in the game form that the knight can perform.

THE TACTICS

1. Capturing Objectives

Questoris Knights have a good movement (10” base) that is faster than a Warhound when not using locomotion orders.  They are faster than the Reaver and significantly faster than the Warlord.  Also, the cheap points cost of a banner (150 with minimum weapon options) means they will not take up a large number of points if they become redundant within the force.  They can hide in cover near the objective and hopefully get some easy Victory Points.

2. Flanking and Harassing Large Prey

Knights are most effective against Titans when in the rear arc and up close.  Titan arm weapons (including Close Combat weapons) are limited to the front arc.  Warlord carapace weapons are fixed forward, while Reavers are 360°.   The rear and side armour is weaker and as a Titan is damaged its armour deteriorates, making even the lighter Knight weapons capable of damaging them.   Carapace weapons on Titans have a minimum range which prevents them from being fired at a range when closer than its scale in inches (10” for Warlords, 8” for Reavers).

Battle Titans are lumbering behemoths and once the Knights are in the kill zone, it will be hard for a Titan to shake them due to its limited manoeuvrability. Warlords have some defencive weapons which will help take a toll on the Knights.  However, Knights still have Ion Shield saves (which are at their strongest against str 6 or less) that will reduce the damage.  Against Knights within range, the Reavers Titans are relatively defenceless.

The agility of the Warhound makes them harder to pin down.  However, the Knight weapons are more effective against the Warhound as the armour is (slightly) lower and only the Avenger cannot damage the front arc of the Warhound.

The limited manoeuvrability of a Titan, particularly a Warlord, means that once Knights are in their rear arc, they will find it impossible to shake them, especially against a skilled Scion.

3. Screening

This can be using your own Knights to counter your opponent Knight's, freeing up your Titans to shoot other Titans, or by trying to draw enemy fire away from your own Titans.  Aggressive use of Knights is recommended to make them a threat. Be aware that Knights are not massively survivable, so you may lose a Banner in a single shot of a belicosa.

4. Fire support

Knights weapons are not massively long-ranged, but they are effective for stripping shields.  Bringing them closer to shoot off an enemy Titan's shield can be effective, allowing larger calibre weapons to do damage.  A Warlord is very robust, so bringing down the shields quickly to cause damage early on is critical.


IN SUMMARY

In our play testing we found knights to be a fun, low-cost and interesting unit.  We can’t wait to get the new models and try them out in larger games.

-TOC

Adeptus Titanicus- The Rulebook


Welcome to Titan Owners Club’s review of the Adeptus Titanicus rulebook.  We’ll be briefly touching on the contents of the book and giving you any special snippets that we’ve found during our time with this deep and tactical game.

THE LOOK
While it’s no Forge World black book for the Horus Heresy, the book is meant to last and look great.  The cover art on both sides is absolutely gorgeous.  Durability won’t be an issue as the book is hardback, meaning you can safely place it in your backpack and not worry about your covers being bent, and the spine will stand up to many years of use. 


The book is also full-colour, providing several examples of Legio and Knight Household heraldry and images of battles in progress.  When using a “pict capture” look, the images are in a blue-gray and black format, providing the player a sense of imagery being taken directly from the battlefields of the Horus Heresy.  The imagery and pictures used in the book break up the text really well and keep reading the book from feeling like a slog.

The book is finished off with a velvet-sheened blue ribbon place marker.  The length of it means that players will be able to use it to identify two pages for quick access, which will be quite useful with the amount of content in the book.


Poorly kept secret: this is Shadow's favorite piece of art in the book.  It will be interesting to see what yours will be.

THE PREFACE AND THE LORE
The Preface covers an introduction to the book, as well as the history and lore of the Titan Legions and some of their greatest battles.  Much of what is available in this section has already been covered in many Black Library or Forge World publications.  We don’t get a lot of new information on other battles or in-depth looks at particular engagements or Legios.  While this section doesn’t add much new lore, it neatly summarizes what is out there and can help players fill in the gaps if they haven’t read certain existing piece of literature.


The section starts with a “transmission” to the reader that details that the Tech Priests that compiled these notes are chronicling the coming of the war and their hand in it.  The transmission briefly touches upon:
  •          The fall of the original human empire.
  •          How Terra and Mars were (somewhat) spared compared to the rest of humanity.
  •          The coming of the Emperor and the Great Crusade.
  •          The Titan Legions.
  •          The Death of Innocence.
  •          The Horus Heresy.

Then, additional information is given about the three primary Titan classes, such as crew, height, weight, and more.  The first Titan engagement in history is also briefly touched upon, including the creation of the original three Titan Orders, the “Triad Ferrum Mogulus”.  The section covers how additional Titan Orders are raised and eventually evolve to become their own distinct entities over time, becoming the Titan Legions that we know today.


Images like this are included for all three Titan classes currently in the game.

The section closes out by providing a timeline of the most notable engagements that occurred during the Age of Darkness, beginning with the Betrayal at Isstvan III and the Schism of Mars, and ending with Beta-Garmon, where the Titandeath campaign occurred.

THE RULES

The rules section begins with a brief description of what Adeptus Titanicus has to offer players beyond the hobby aspect.  The game pays homage to the versions of Adeptus Titanicus that came before and references that some mechanics from older editions were used to inspire this newest edition.  This will allow players with previous Adeptus Titanicus experience to transition into the newest edition more easily.


However, this rules book will not be the only source material as time goes on.  It mentions potential upcoming expansions to the rules, models, and command terminals.  A brief breakdown of the materials needed to play the game is provided, as well as a quick summary of the game’s phases.

Prior to the games main rules, basic concepts of the game (such as re-rolls, explaining the different dice, arcs, templates, and more) are explained.  These basic concepts, as well as the rules that follow, are carefully explained and quite clear.  A lot of thought has been given to the wording in this game and there is very little ambiguity.  The game even includes additional callout boxes and blurbs that will clarify what to do should a unique situation occur that would cause potential rules contradictions.

The rules begin with the basic rules, which explain the main parts of each phase and how they are conducted.  This section occasionally references other advanced rules that can apply and tells the player where to find them.  Together the basic and advanced rules form the core rules of the game.  Players are encouraged to use only the basic rules for their first few games, eventually adding the advanced rules to get the full experience.

One of the game’s major strengths will be a balance caused by the turn sequence.  Rather than a player taking all of their actions in a phase, each player alternates activating a unit in each phase until all actions have been completed.  This means that the game features many tactical decisions, giving the player a variety of decisions to make with very little down time in the game.   Furthermore, players will also be able to take actions that could be dangerous but highly advantageous, such as pushing a Titan’s reactor for extra movement speed or turning capability.

One thing that was evident early on in the basic rules is that the Repair Phase may take the most thought since Titans live and die by their void shields and weaponry.  This phase allows players to fix downed void shields, cool their reactors, or repair damaged weapons.  However, dice luck will be important, and these (limited) dice are spent in a manner more akin to Warhammer Quest than simply attempting an action and rolling a die.  For players who haven’t played Warhammer Quest, this system will require acclimation.

In particular, the Combat Phase is very detailed.  While it seems overwhelming at first, it’s very well defined and adds a lot of realism to the game.  Players will need to consider where they are taking fire from, where they will be firing at, and the order in which they will use their weapons.  It’s not a game that will reward a “Shoot first, ask questions never” mentality.  It will also lead to players needing to consider not just which weapons fire first on a Titan, but which Titans fire first since some will be more effective at cracking shields than others, while others are designed to deliver punishing death blows.

The advanced rules add upon the basic rules by implementing stratagems (tricks and ploys), orders for individual Titans, and terrain types.  These rules also add additional effects on Titan plasma reactors, awakened Machine Spirits, Titan squadrons, and Knight support.  The addition of Knight support is covered in a separate review.


The advanced rules, while somewhat small in comparative size to the base rules, also add major changes to the gaming experience.  These rules add more variability to Titanicus and increase the tactical depth and risk/reward factors of the game.  However, while these rules are listed as advanced, they feel like they could have been thrown in from the start. 

The final section of the rules are the optional rules, which fit on a single page. These rules cover the ability to overload void shields willingly, destroying terrain, stray shots, and power transfer from one area of the Titan to another.  Unlike the advanced rule, which are eventually added to regular games, the optional rules are, as their name says, optional at all times.  Some of these changes are cinematic, while others provide tactical options.  It would certainly be nice to see the optional rules expanded at a later stage.

PREPARING FOR WAR

Following the rules is a section on assembling your force for play.  A player’s overall force is called the battlegroup, but this is comprised of a maniple, solo Titans in support, and Knight Banners.  The section then goes on to describe the three different play modes in Adeptus Titanicus.  People who have played Warhammer 40,000 8th edition or Warhammer: Age of Sigmar will be familiar with the three play modes.  Open Play allows players to build their battlegroup however they wish, with no restrictions.  Narrative and Matched Play require at least one maniple type to be in the force.  These play modes also make use of the points and Battle Rating system in the game.  Narrative Play is all about reliving the greatest stories from the Horus Heresy Titan battles.  Matched Play is about a balanced fight where skill-at-arms is most important.

This section also adds a short bit of lore about the composition of a maniple and its “law” within the Libraxus Titanica.  While the book comes with three starting maniples, it mentions that future expansions will bring new maniple options.  Each maniple type gains its own trait, which gives it special rules and bonuses; effectively the old formations of 40k.  Battlegroups may contain any number of additional support Titans after it has met its maniple requirements.  However, these support Titans do not gain any maniple bonuses and cannot join any squadrons.

The battlegroup’s maniple contains the Princeps Seniores, who serves as the force’s linchpin and is equivalent to the 40k Warlord, even getting a personal trait and bonuses.  Their Titan receives +2 to Command checks and also gain personal trait.  These traits are contained in a table and include things like the ability to automatically become the First Player for a turn, adjusting a single Repair roll die, or ignoring Catastrophic Damage on a roll.

The maniple types presented in the rule book will provide players with a few options on list building and should suit almost all play styles be they hard-hitting bruisers or nimble harassers.  The first maniple is the Axiom Battleline Maniple which is the most balanced of the forces and offers a trait that ensures that a bad Command roll will not stop the rest from being able to receive their own commands.  The Myrmidon Battleline Maniple focuses strictly on the Battle Titans and provides a trait that enhances the likelihood of issuing the First Fire and Split Fire orders.  The final maniple is the Venator Light Maniple, which sees a Reaver leading multiple Warhounds into the fray.  This maniple’s trait allows for opportunistic shots for the Reaver when the Warhounds collapse enemy shields.

MISSIONS AND BONUS ITEMS


The remainder of the book is dedicated to stratagems, missions, and rules for two Titan Legions.  The section also includes a quick blurb that lets players know that designing their own missions is not only possible, but something that is encouraged for those that wish to.  Games will usually be fought on a 4’ by 4’ area for the sake of space availability.  However, some missions play on the classic 6’ by 4’ of most Games Workshop products.

This section also includes stratagems, which represent tactics, tricks, and ploys used by a Princeps Seniores in battle.  Each mission will dictate how many Stratagem points a player has to spend.  Open Play allows players to decide whether to use Stratagem points and how many.  Stratagems are also used in Matched Play to balance out differences in Battle Rating.  Another form of Strategems is Battlefield Assets, which provide in-game bonuses when using their models.

Of course, this section provides the missions for each mode of play.  The Narrative Play missions definitely echo the stories that have been produced over the years, with two favorites of TOC staff members among them: The last defense of the Magma City (Mechanicum) and The wreck of the Arutan (Honour to the Dead). 

Finally, rules are available for Legio Gryphonicus and Legio Tempestus.  These rules contain Legion Traits, specific wargear, and Personal Traits for the Princeps Seniores.  Players gain additional Strategem points when using a set of Legion rules.  Additional Titan Legions and Knight Household rules will be added in future supplements.

FINAL THOUGHTS

There are only two things to knock about the rule book for Adeptus Titanicus: the lore and the advanced rules.  The lore that’s been included in the book is good and it will catch players up on pieces that they are missing.  However, it’s short and very little of it is new.  With that said, there are plenty of juicy tidbits in there, and some of the callout boxes and blurbs in the book help to bring character to the Titan Legions. 

In regards to knocking the advanced rules, it’s not because they are bad.  Rather, the advanced rules add so much depth, character, and tactical choice to the game that they should be part of the game from the very beginning instead of a bolt-on to the basic rules.  The optional rules of the game, which can be expanded later, would serve as great advanced rules afterwards.

While Adeptus Titanicus only seems to have two (minor) faults, it has so many great things about it.  The game is deep and will require good generalship on the battlefield.  It will be full of difficult choices and players will have a deep tactical toolbox to draw from.  The rules are very well explained and there is very little ambiguity to anything in the book.  Gameplay will be cinematic in its own right and will require players to be both proactive and reactive.  The objectives system of Adeptus Titanicus in Matched Play will also ensure that no two Matched Play games are ever the same, while the Narrative Play missions will provide the lovers of Black Library and Forge World books many a great recreation of their favorite stories.