Review – Warcry: Heart of Ghur is Warhammer at its best

Battle Cry it was a big surprise when Games Workshop announced it in 2019. But after release Warhammer 40,000: Kill the teamthe community was prepared for another miniature skirmish game, this time set in a fantasy world Warhammer: Age of Sigmar. The appeal was similar – a fleshy game that requires only a handful of figurines to play, and a system with the potential to run strong narrative campaigns and a lively competitive scene. The result was a hit with fans and critics alike. Battlecry: Heart of Ghur is the second? Battle Cry The box set, launched in August, is a simple yet effective version of what was already Games Workshop’s best set of rules.

The heart of Ghur takes place in Gnarlwood, a rugged swamp twisted and possessed by the bleeding life force of an extraterrestrial ship. His treasures lie in wicked places, protected by hostile beasts, carnivorous trees, and other bands thirsty for blood and fortune.

The box contains a thick combat board, enough terrain to fill the area, and two complete gangs for one-on-one play. The Creed Rotmire is a psychotic group of scourge alchemists who are committed to defending their territory against the aggressive Hashut Horns, furious bands of raiders looking to burn the earth and destroy anything they come across. While these two hideous Chaos factions are featured in the main storyline of this release, other gangs across the Games Workshop product line may also enter Gnarlwood in search of alien artifacts.

The distinct setting is a big part of the charm of z The heart of Ghur. One of the strongest features of Games Workshop skirmish games – Kill the team, Necromundaand even A bowl of blood to some extent – it is possible to create smaller units from just a handful of figures from your favorite army. Full fat cost Age of Sigmar an army can reach at least a few hundred dollars, but in Battle Cry you can build four or five different bands for about the same price. Virtually anything and everything from Age of Sigmar The product line is up for grabs here and all stats and rules are available for free online.

Two figures of warriors with bronze flails.  They wear bronze helmets with bull heads and their boots have open toes.

What raises Battle Cry however, above its competitors is its superb smoothness and pace of play. This is a very energetic game because the scenarios and layout of the terrain are randomly generated. Several decks are shuffled and cards are revealed to dictate the battlefield setup and objectives. Each procedurally created meeting also has a surprise that provides an unexpected change of rules and a strategic wrinkle. Twisty is one of the most interesting aspects Battle Cry. Some result in general improvements for all participants, for example, fighters get an extra hit point, while others change the standard rules of movement or combat rules. This influences tactical considerations in a way that causes players to change their strategy and adapt to the changing situation.

The game is similarly dynamic, with players throwing handfuls of dice each round and splitting their scores into pools of singles, doubles, and triples. While the participant with the most singles gains initiative in the round, doubles and triples are allocated to faction-specific skills. This provides a high degree of asymmetry in addition to the fighter profiles, allowing for unexpected combat reinforcements or aggressive maneuvers. I definitely prefer the system to Kill the teamtactic cards that require a lot more learning. In Battle Cry you just have a small chart that is easy to reference and internalize.

Activation takes place according to an individual model, with players alternating back and forth. The tactical considerations are enormous despite the very simple activation and combat systems. The texture is provided by the interactive terrain, objective-based gameplay, and the battlefield where warriors come out and enter during battle.

The figure of a tree that has grown into a giant skull.  The piece of land is accompanied by two smaller, insert paintings depicting stone and reed dams.

Battle Cry it’s also a very vertical game where your troops can climb constructions and jump over gaps. This enhances the cinematic atmosphere of a fast-paced conflict. It also rewards creative terrain modeling.

In essence The heart of Ghur it is almost identical to the pre-existing one Battle Cry set of rules. But it does move the game forward in two key areas.

The new reaction mechanism deserves attention. This allows warriors to cause unique interrupts with these double and triple power dice. It’s an elegant system that evokes the overwatch mechanics that are common in many science fiction miniature games. Players may be able to react to their opponent’s charge by attacking them first, or fire a ranged attack when someone comes into their line of sight. Each faction has its own unique response based on its environment and combat style. It’s a great addition to the game as it increases the dynamics and flow of the conflict, integrating perfectly into the alternating activation structure. It’s surprisingly smooth and feels like it always belongs.

The heart of Ghur also strengthens the game in the campaign. The system now more closely mimics the Path to Glory campaign system in: Age of Sigmar. Warband’s story objectives are further integrated into existing scenarios, allowing players to progress along their individual story path and earn quest points. Eventually, the quest will be completed, offering rewards such as empowered warriors or a powerful artifact to wield. The beauty is that it is an extra layer to the game that sits atop a simple skirmish structure and provides a richer and satisfying experience.

Battle CryThe new territory management system is just as fantastic. You can send warriors with your strength to explore and seek happiness, risking their health. It has shades of the turf system in Necromundaand it feels like a more mature and dramatic incorporation that helps spice up the Gnarlwood scenery.

Overall, a lot of what’s featured in this box is just fantastic. The system hasn’t been tampered with too much, keeping the spirit of what it created Battle Cry special. And yet it has been clearly improved in an elegant and sophisticated way.

From a cost point of view, the value of this set is sufficient; in isolation and maybe even strong. However, it’s hard to ignore how fantastic the original is Battle Cry the core was. While the gangs here are just as intriguing as the previous group, the initial terrain set was one of the best contained scenery sets Games Workshop has ever released, so it’s hard to The heart of Ghur for measurement. Gnarlwood is still a wonderful environment to shed blood in, and it comes alive wonderfully with malicious trees and spiked skulls.

The heart of Ghur also serves as an introduction to Gnarlwood, an environment that will continue to be explored with additional box sets and terrain in this new season Battle Cry. This setting is significant and is beyond the scope of this skirmish. Both Age of Sigmar and Underground Warhammer they are releasing the titles at this location as the theme will cover all of Games Workshop’s fantasy products.

This is a great start Battle Cry‘s second century. My imagination and passion are ready for the upcoming additions and the best Games Workshop game to continue my reign.

Battlecry: Heart of Ghur has been validated using a retail copy provided by Games Workshop. Vox Media has affiliate companies. They do not affect the editorial content, although Vox Media may earn commissions for products purchased through affiliate links. You can find more information on Polygon’s ethics policy here.

Leave a Reply