As the poem clearly tells, this is one dark, nihilistic, somber bitch of a world. Not the kind of place you'd like to live, but maybe a good place to get some gaming done, eh? Nearly one half of the lavishly illustrated rulebook is devoted to background and history, of which the condensed version is this:
The rulebook introduces the five major races of Chronopia:
Roughly the last fourth of the rulebook serves as both a guide to the armies allowed, and an illustrated catalog of many of the official Chronopia miniatures.
In a nutshell, players create armies using an agreed-upon number of points. Armies are composed of Individuals and Warbands (groups of 2-12 models), with only one Individual allowed per Warband in the army. There cannot be more missile-weapon-armed Warbands than non-missile-armed Warbands.
The army list indicates for each type of Warband the maximum and minimum number of members, and whether any special types - such as leaders or standardbearers - are allowed.
Points must also be spent to purchase spells. Each army list includes its own, unique list of available spells.
Each Warband must have a leader, even if a specific leader-type model was not purchased for that group. If the leader is slain, a new leader will be chosen - usually on a turn by turn basis...
The army list provides a profile for every troop type, indicating a model's stats. The fields are:
The rules, which compose the one-fourth of the rulebook which is not printed in color, are pretty straightforward. Players roll for Initiative, with the winner deciding which unit of either player begins the turn. After this, players alternate "activating" units until every unit has been activated once.
When a unit is activated, its members - one model at a time - have the chance to do something. Each troop type is rated for the number of Actions it can take per turn (usually 2 Actions per turn). The available Actions are:
A model may also choose to Wait. This allows it to postpone one Action until an enemy model does something that it can see.
Individuals (non-Warbands) may perform two special Actions - Give Orders, which activates another friendly unit; and Rally, an attempt to restore a panicked Warband.
A model which is farther from the Warband's leader than the Command Distance must spend all of its Actions on Moves until it is again within range of the leader (usually 4").
Close combat may occur when two models are in base-to-base contact. The attacking player rolls a d20, trying to roll equal to or less than a value determined by his model's Close Combat stat minus the defender's Defensive Modifier score. A natural "20" is a fumble, causing the attacker to lose any remaining Actions this turn; a natural "1" is an automatic hit.
Now the defender gets to roll a d20, trying to avoid damage by rolling under or equal to the defender's Armor rating minus the attacking weapon's Damage score. Some weapons require multiple Damage rolls.
Missile weapon combat is similar, except that the attacker must be facing his target and have an unobstructed Line of Sight. No measuring is allowed until after an attack is declared, when - depending on the weapon's stats - a target might be found to be at Close Range, Maximum Range, or out of range. To hit, the attacker must roll less than equal to his model's Missile Weapon score (minus a penalty, if firing at Maximum Range; or with a bonus, if it has previously Aimed).
Priority rules limit which targets an archer can select - preventing singling out leaders, or firing on distant units instead of nearer threats.
Spells are cast in a similar manner to ranged combat. The caster must roll less than or equal to his Power score, minus the Level of the spell. (Some spells allow the caster to choose the level of the spell.) Concentrating provides a bonus to spell-casting.
Once a Warband has lost half of its models, it is broken. A Morale Roll must be made now, and for each subsequent casualty. The roll is made versus the Leadership score of the group's leader, and failure results in Panic. (A natural "20" means the unit flees, and is instantly removed from play!) A panicked unit uses all Actions to move towards friendly territory. It recovers when safe, when it succeeds at a new Morale Roll (one per turn, with a penalty applying), or when an Individual succeeds with a Rally Action.
The game is over when one player no longer has any forces, or when he surrenders. Alternately - such as when playing to a time limit - the player wins whose surviving forces add up to the most Army Points.
The rules also cover such topics as:
What the rulebook does not include:
|16 September 1999||page first published|
|Comments or corrections?|