Joining the infantry – ideas for a more diverse KoM army (3)

My first KoM multibase – back in 2015 or 2016. Glueing 10 spearmen on a base was the epitome of efficiency back then…. Really “decent” phone picture too.

My first two posts on improving the Kingdoms of Men army (here and here) in future editions of Kings of War focussed on shooters and war machines. These parts of the army could do with some love.

Now for the infantry: they work fine as they are. Cheap, basic, they have two main roles: Chaff and anvils. They also try to be damage dealers, which they don’t do that well. So, there’s little need for improvement there.

That said, I’ll just make a brain dump for some ideas to expand on Kingdoms of men, but unlike the previous parts, these are all just “nice to have” instead of “must have”.

First, let’s adress the various roles.

Anvils

Anvil = a unit that can take some punishment to keep the enemies’ killers from killing your squishies. Best working in tandem with killing units. Kingdoms of men have some decent anvils, but most of all, they are cheap.

The most iconic anvil in the game is the humble shield wall. 100 points for a regiment, speed 5, 13/15 nerve and no special rules. Don’t expect them to kill anything, since 12 attacks @ 4+ won’t do any serious damage.

Frankly, I can think of no rules change that will improve this unit. There’s to be a baseline, and this is it.

Kingdoms of Men have other anvils: (increased offensive abilities not taken into account)

  • Foot guard (def 5+; higher nerve)
  • Spears (Phalanx)
  • Pikes (Phalanx and ensnare, but def 3+)
  • Heavy pikes (Higher nerve, phalanx, ensnare, def 4+)
  • Militia (Cheap, def 3+, also come in legions)

Generally, the addition of special rules (and increased cost) make the unit less desirable as an anvil. Most anvils I see used are either shield wall and heavy pikes. (the latter due to the fact that they can hold on most adversaries for at least a turn)

horde spears

The only change I’d want is the revaluation of costs for the spear/pike units across all armies. This is nothing unique to KoM, so I’ll leave it here.

Aren’t anvils boring? Yes they are, but they have their role and most (if not all) armies use them as they are very useful.

Chaff

Chaff units are cheap units that can deal some damage, but most importantly, block the way for incoming heavy damage units so they don;t hit the more valueable units hiding behind them.

Kingdoms of men are the champions of chaff. (Only Kin/Abyssal gargoyles make better chaff, because they fly). Nearly all troops of infantry can be used as chaff, as they are cheap. Some even can do some damage too.

My most popular chaff is the polearm troop. 10 attacks at CS (1) can do some damage and are too dangerous to ignore, especially if aiming for flanks. Other players favour militia troops due to the cheaper cost of 50 points compared to 70; but I find that militia are ignored sometimes even if they can get a flank.

Kingdoms of Men have other chaff too. Heroes and wizards make for good chaff, especially when mounted on a horse or pegasus. 90 points ( 75 for the wizard) for a flying chaff unit with either 3 attacks at CS(1) or LB (3) is really good! That said, as this blog post concerns infantry, so I’ll leave the characters as they are.

Damage dealers

KoM infantry are mediocre damage dealers. Foot guard with 2-handed weapons, berserkers and polearms make up our damage dealers. Berserkers are especially popular due to their increased number of attacks and fearlessness. All have a low defense and CS (1).

polearms

The combination of CS, a low cost with average nerve should do the trick pretty well. However, when playing the game there’s always lacking something. I think it’s because our units can’t stand toe-to-to with other more elite units of comparable cost. Especially the lower defense and horde size hurts our damage dealers.

Example: a unit of blade dancers (Kin) will most likely wipe out any of our damage dealers, while surviving a counter charge from another horde – all on a regiment base size-. This means I have to commit three hordes of polearms or berserkers to counter that regiment of blade dancers in a straight faceoff.

Here’s an army that sort-of worked using a lot of these infantry hordes.

What I’d like to see changed:

I’d like better damage dealers; but I don’t hink a straigth buff will do the trick. Moreover; I’d like some way to have the various elements of a KoM army infantry improve each other.

League of Rhordia got a really fun formation in Clash 19: horde of city militia (aka polearm block) and 2 troops of city militia. Effect:

“The City Spear Militia Horde in this formation is granted the Inspiring (Militia only) special rule. The City Militia Troops in this formation are granted both the Elite and Vicious special rules while engaged in the flank or rear of enemy units.  ” (Source: Easyarmy.com)

What if….

Do I need the 9″ inspiring bubble?

What if the special rule of Kingdoms of Men (inspiring = very inspiring) changes into something that rewards mixed-unit approach? For instance:

  • Hordes gain “inspiring” (to show that smaller units take courages in presence of large units of troops). Alternative: rally 1. (but that’s been taken by ratkin, so I’d rather not)
  • Regiments gain “Whenever this unit and all friendly non-allied units within 6” rolls to hit with a normal shooting attack or in Melee, these can re-roll one of the dice that failed to hit. “
  • Troops gain the vicious special rule while within 6″ of a friendly, non-allied regiment or horde.

Would this be unbalanced? Probably, so the rule definately needs adjusting with balance in mind. This is just a brain dump of ideas, remember?

The goal of this excercise is to create a rules set that changes the boring “+3″ to inspiring” to something that rewards mutual supporting units. In my mind, the race of men wins by working together, not by skill (like elves) or being very strong (like orks). This rule would reward that.

Would it complicate KoW? I’m not sure…. It would turn Kingdoms of men into a more tactical army, that’s for sure…. It;d need some serious playtesting, that is.

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6 thoughts on “Joining the infantry – ideas for a more diverse KoM army (3)

  1. Nice post and pictures!
    But I have to say, I do not think that the KoM should really GET a good vanilla infantry damage dealer.
    The soviet-style “big quanity is also a kind of quality” thinking is sufficient in my opinion. That some regular line-troops suddenly get vicious if somebody is close does not feel “right” to me.

    For me, KoM is about easily dying, but at the same time not being AS cowardly as Goblins. I do not see damage dealers in normal infantry. I liked the GW approach with the griphon rider and the knights.

    as i see it, mantic now paved the way for the OMPH for KoM with their new unit for KoM in Vanguard:
    you can use an orge.

    it would be sound for me, if you could bring a unit of Orges to the battlefield who are your heavy hitters.

    btw: do you prefer answers HERE or at the dakkadakka forum?

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    1. Thanks for the feedback!

      Anyhows, it doesn’t really matter where you reply as I read both your reply here as a reply on dakka. (I use Dakka mainly as an extension of this blog). I’d say that the Dakka forums have a higher trafic rate, so your replies will probs be read by more persons there.

      Of course, I fully agree KoM would do well with a nice damage dealer of its own, be it ogres(or any other large infantry), a succubi-like berserker unit or a honour-guard like unit. Clash ’19 has given the army both the giant and an improved war beast; what do you think of these?

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  2. i needed to check easyarmy for the CoK 2019 changes because I do not have them yet. plus when i play with my friends i usually stay with “vanilla” rulebook to keep it simple.

    well i am somewhat ambivalent towards the changes!

    First, the giant.
    Fluff wise, I think it makes sense somehow to have a Giant, on the other hand its the first non-evil army to get access to one.
    Mechanics wise, i feel like it increases the (already wide) range of units that can be fielded by the KoM even more and adds a unit with punch.

    so I… guess I am happy?

    Second, the War Beast.
    I am a bit disappointed with that one. I would have hoped for closer stats so i would be able to field my WHFB steam tanks.

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  3. Playing vanila works well -as long as no one is power gaming the system. KoW 2016 and 2017 had a few loopholes in army build that allowed for really nasty combinations. If you don’t have that guy in your gaming group that adds those combinations to any army, there’s little need for the Clash books.

    Other than that, it’s nice to gain some new additions. I really love the giant as well as the upgraded war beast. The upgraded beast is really decent, 12 attacks that usually hit on fours is much better than it was.

    Of course, if I want a tank, I just play Rhordia instead. Most of my infantry as well as my knights can be fielded in rhoria, my tank is an iron beast and I can field my elephants as honour guards. I dont’t need halflings to play Rhordia….

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  4. oh! i never thought of that to be honest! i didnt really read them through I guess because I thought those would be for LoTR players! Thanks for the hint 😉

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