Warcry – Custom Heroes


Last week we looked at the old Warhammer mini-campaign Terror of the Lichemaster. It was designed for 3 linked Warhammer battles that told an overall story. That format works really well for Warcry and there have been several 3 game campaign arcs already released.

One of the most interesting things for me  about that campaign book is the detailed backgrounds they have for all the major players, heroes and villains alike. For the final battle, there are 5 heroes defending the village who are joined by the heroes who survived the earlier battles. It does have a bit of a Seven Samurai vibe to it. In this video we’re going to get profiles for those fighters using a new feature on the Warcry Card Creator.


When looking through the defenders them I realised I already models that matched a few of them from the Cursed City box. Glaurio ven Alten III is Antonio Epstein, Qulathis the Exile is Riolta Snow, Jelsen Darrock makes a good Grimwald Calaco, while Emelda Braskov has the sword and armour for Albi Schutz. That just leaves the Halfling Gim Grundel who looks like a Bloodbowl Halfling and potentially Hunk Bogel and the Dwarf leader Gimbrin Finehelm if they survived the earlier battles.


Unfortunately, none of those models have points for Warcry. We did get profiles for the undead side of the box but never for the heroes. A few months back I did do a video on Hexbane’s Hunters video where we looked at two approaches to generate profiles for models that don’t have them. The first is to use an existing profile and go with that. The design team will have already done all the work and it should be balanced. The other approach is to work out the profile you think would be appropriate and try ball park the points yourself. It’s a little more challenging as it’s not clear how GW work out the points.


In the intervening months, we were gifted with another tool, divine blessings. The divine blessings are designed for matched play and let you spent extra points to improve a single stat on a fighter. This has actually been a fantastic addition to the game massively increasing the number of profiles. In almost every case, you’re spending more points than you would if the bonus was already built into the fighter. So although we are seeing blessings appear in tournament lists they certainly aren’t dominating them. It’s a good way to spend left over points without having to redo your warband and it lets you tailor a fighter for a specific task.


It also gave us a bit of a clue about how design work out the points. There are two points cost for each blessing, one if your fighter is 22 wounds or less and another if they are 23 or more wounds. Usually giving a blessing to a fighter with more wounds costs more. If we go down through the list there is one important exceptions, Fortitude which gives additional Wounds, costs the same regardless of total wounds. We can also see the non-profile blessings like Heroism, Spite, and Destiny. When we’re looking at blessings that change Move, Toughness, and the various parts that impact damage then we can see these things do scale.


From plotting the various profiles I have found the wounds to points and average damage to points typically are on a linear scale, that means that for roughly every 25 points you get 3 wounds and 1 average damage. In these plots I’ve limited it to 4 move and 4 toughness fighters. 

To me it looks like this is the first step and then after that baseline is worked out points are increased or decreased by percentages. So an extra point of move costs 15 points as a blessing. At 22 wounds you’re around 150 points, so that extra move is a points increase of around 10%.


Alright, that was a fancy way of saying I think I’ve got a decent handle on how to work out the points. It’s not exact but if you flick through the list of fighter profiles at the bottom of the generator and compare with the points calculation you’ll see it’s pretty close. There are a few cases I haven’t quite worked out, especially when there are two weapon options. It’s also likely that these fighters had their points tweaked after a little playtesting or just adjusted based on their abilities. So the algorithm is never going to be perfect. If you hit details you can see the breakdown if it’s something you’re interested in. Importantly, it’s now easy to work out some points if you have a profile.


Lets talk about profiles then. There are a few things you should know before you start making your own fighters. While you certainly can make a Grot profile with crazy damage and the health pool of a Dragon, it’s not going to feel right. To help with this I’ve got a few baselines here. Usually you can get these by looking at a random normal fighter. So we know no one has 1 toughness, only skinks are 2, unarmoured humans are 3, and typically armoured warriors are 4 toughness. Adding in a Shield will normally increase that by one again. For speed, 4 is a typical human, 3 is considered slow and has Dwarves and heavily armoured fighters, 5 is Elves with 6 and 7 for very fast infantry like Skinks and Skaven. After that you’re into cavalry. 


I’ve already talked about how wounds scale, but each race will have what you can consider an average wounds pool or maybe a lower cap. So a human will usually be 10 wounds and a human with 6 wounds probably has a special reason for it, bu ta Grot with 6 wounds is living his best life. Wounds will scale so you can have a chunkier Grot but there probably is a cap after which it no longer makes sense.


Damage is similar and does scale with points. That said, weapons often have a certain style about them. Maybe a weapon has few dice but high damage values or the reverse, they might end up with similar damage averages but the curve will be different. So we have a list of baselines here. These weapons often have very low average damage, so you may need to scale them up to match the fighter you’re looking to build. Adjusting strength, attacks, or just straight damage values will up the average. There isn’t necessarily any particular way to do this, just go with what feels right. Keep in mind that the points calculation is based purely on average damage against toughness 4, so there are ways to abuse it if you try.


For the Terror of the Lichemaster campaign, we have undead hordes attacking the village. It might be worth our while tweaking some of the undead profiles to get a little more character into them, but for the time being wen want to flesh out the 5 heroes defending the village.


First we start with Albi Schutz. This is the store owner who is the former inter-valley wrestling champion. Here we have the model for Emedla Braskov from Cursed City. She’s a human so she’s move 4, toughness 3, and 10 wounds to start. She’s wearing lots of armour so we’ll bring her toughness to 4. We want her chunky so we’re going to bring her to 20 wounds which is up with Stormcast levels of chunk. She’s a hero so we’ll go with it. Her sword is two handed which is range 1, attacks 4, strength 4, 2 damage and 4 crits. If we look at the points estimates, the wounds is about 167 but the weapon is only 133. 


Keeping them close is normally a good idea, so we’ll up the strength of the weapon to 5 which takes it from 5.3 to 6.6 average damage and we end up on 165 estimated points. That actually makes her a Errant-Questor with Grandblade spot on but with 1 less toughness. We give her a Hero and Warrior runemark just in case we want to add an ability with it later.


Next in the line is Grimwald Calco using the Jelsen Darrock model. This will be a bit weird as we have a melee and ranged weapon. He actually has a few melee weapons, hammer, dagger, and sword on the back. Again we start with the human baseline, we’ll up the wounds to 16 to give him a bit of a hero buffer but move and toughness remain the same. We start with the Hammer and Blunderbuss profiles for the weapons. From the wounds the base is 117 points, the hammer is 63, and the gun before factoring in range is 42. So again we’re going to up some of those weapons. For the melee I add a point of damage, and increase the strength by 1. Then we do similar for the ranged, adding an attack and a point of damage.


Working out the points for dual weapons is tricky, essentially what I do is check which the most expensive weapon by points would be and go with that. That does mean you can increase the second weapon as far as you want as long as you don’t beat that threshold. To allow for that, I do add a a 5% cost for a dual option. Grimwald here is now doing 3 average damage at range and 4 in melee. That’s pretty great. I give him Hero and Destroyer as the model is a witchhunter after all.


Next up Riolta Snow, the travelling Elf archer. We start her with the normal elf profile, so move 5, toughness 3 and 8 wounds. She has a Bow and a large elf knife. As a hero we want to make her a little tougher so we up her to 16 wounds. We up the damage on the knife from 1 to 2 to make it a little more dangerous, but this will be the backup. We want her bow to be awesome, so we increase the attacks, strength, damage and crit by one. That might seem like a lot of changes, but we can track it by looking at the average damage. In this case we’re taking the average damage of the bow from 1.3 to 4 which is actually pretty amazing. We check the estimated points and it’s 185. Most of that is coming from the bow, we could up the wounds to try even it out but I think we’re good. I did end up tweaking the formula for ranged weapons a few times to get something I felt was right, so do remember we’re just guessing here. If it looks wrong to use, then adjust it.


We finish it off giving her the Agile runemark which sounds good for an Elf. Right now these are just flavour, eventually we’ll add some abilities and having a different runemark on each fighter will help with that.


Then we have Antonio Epstein, the Tilean noble. We start with the human profile and push the wounds up to 16 to make him heroic. He has a sword and pistol, so we plug those in straight away. The basic sword has 4 average damage while the pistol is 2. That make sense here, we want to pistol to be some light damage while the sword is the real action. The wounds baseline out around 133 points while the sword is 100, so it ends up with an average of 115 points.


Honestly, I’m pretty happy with this guy without any changes so I’ll leave him as is. Since he’s a noble we’ll give him the Elite runemark. 


Last we have Gim Grundel, who I do not currently have a model for. In the campaign this is a halfling hero who steps up. We don’t have any Halfling profiles that I’m aware of from Warcry so I had a quick check in the Warhammer Fantasy Roleplay rulebook and it they are basically a Dwarf who isn’t as tough. So that’s 3 move, 3 toughness, and 8 wounds to start. 


The model we’re using is one of the bloodbowl ones so we’re going for fists rather than the sword and shield Gim proper had in the campaign. Adding in the basic unarmed profile I up the crit damage from 2 to 3 to give Gim a bit of a chance of doing some damage. We give him Hero and Minion so he can key off either of the abilities.


And that’s it, 5 heroes in total. All ready to defend the village of Frugelhofen. In total they’re coming to 655 points. We don’t have a warband or a faction but that’s something we can work on and add in. We aren’t building a balanced warband here, the goal is just to make an enjoyable game. So we’ll probably give each of the fighters their own unique double or triple to add a little flavour. I’m not going to do that today, but I will link to a pdf pack where I’ve been slowly putting together everything to play through the Terror of the Lichemaster in a Warcry campaign.


New CoS profiles are 60pts!

We can round out this warband with some cheap village defenders. In this case I’ve used the Freeguild Steelhelms which were part of the Cities of Sigmar pack I previously put together for the new releases. That would be 10 fighters in total which hopefully will give them enough to hold off the undead hordes.


We also have these fighters ready for a Cursed City pack which is something I’m working on for the future. The miniatures in the box are awesome and I felt the game and the way GW treated it really didn’t do the box justice. I think we can do something with Warcry.


Alright. We’ve done a few different things in this episode. We’ve developed out the Terror of the Lichemaster pack and we’ve made a start on the Cursed City pack. The big feature here is the points calculator added to the Warcry Card Creator. It’s definitely not perfect yet and I’ll keep tweaking it as time goes on. 

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