Fantasy Rules! Expansion Pack

cover picture

Brief Description

This set is a smorgasbord of new materials for Fantasy Rules!, including

  • complete errata and rules changes for original rules
  • new rules (fading, grappling)
  • rules for integrating flying, burrowing, and sea creatures on the same battlefield
  • new unit types (lesser/minor spirits, tricksters, beastmen, leviathans, slaves, chariots, magic-casting monsters, planar entities, vampiric parasites, and mechanical contraptions)
  • new character types (witch hunters, hive queens, archangels, demon lords, bards, healers, alchemists, bodyguards, familiars)
  • 5 "special items or abilities" for units (for instance, ability to swim/burrow/fly, or stakes to deploy)
  • 9 "special items or abilities" for characters (such as taunting, and holy hand grenades)
  • notes on tournament and multi-player games
  • new army lists, including semi-historical armies (6 types of North American Indians, Celts, Israelites, Assyrians, Hittites, Near East, Chinese, Conquistadores, Renaissance, Inquisition) and pure fantasy (gnomes, kobolds, planar, hill dwarves, evil, hive, angelic/demonic)
  • guidelines for making your own army lists
  • a sample scenario (Dwarves vs. Evil)
  • designer's notes, with examples of play and tactical advice

Resealable plastic envelope contains 16 full-size cardstock sheets:

  • 6 rule cards
  • 3 reference cards
  • 3 cards of army lists and new army-list rules
  • 1 card of diagrams
  • 1 scenario card
  • 1 card of counter tracks
  • 1 errata card for Fantasy Rules!
Designers Chip Harrison (
Curtis Wright (
Publisher Published 1996 by Chipco

What You Think

Mark Havener (

I've been eagerly awaiting the release of the Fantasy Rules! Expansion Pack for months, ever since I heard that Chipco Games was working on it. Well, it's finally out now, and I have it! With a retail price of about US$10, it's quite a bargain, IMHO. Here's what's inside:

  1. Rules of "The Levels of Operation" in Fantasy Rules! These are basically height levels, with Level 1 being Sea Bottom, level 2 Swimming (below the sea's surface) or Burrowing (below the ground surface), Level 3 the Sea/Land surface, and Level 4 Flying height. With these rules, we are no longer restricted to ground and flying models in FR! - we can now play battles at sea or involving a large body of water, have creatures that burrow underground in our land battles, etc. Pretty cool, overall.
  2. New Unit Types. There are now Lesser Spirits, Tricksters (if you get a Trickster's combat roll, your troops die instead of it!), Beastmen, Leviathans (or Colossi - ever wanted to play with that big metal statue from Jason and the Argonauts? ;) ), slaves, different types of chariots, magic-casting monsters, planar entities (Cthulhu!), parasitics (giant leeches, ugh!), and contraptions (ever wanted to play an army of tinkering gnomes?).
  3. New Character Types. There are now two classes of characters - Major and Minor. Major characters include all the old ones from the basic ruleset (General, Heroes, Wizards), but this class has expanded to include Witch Hunters, Hive Queens, Archangels/Demon Lords, and Bards (these guys are very cool, giving your troops a big morale boost). Minor characters include Healers, Alchemists (ever wanted to turn lead into gold? How about iron into tin foil? ;) ), and Bodyguards (just the thing to protect that important wizard from an assassin!).
  4. New Rules. There are a few new rules and rules changes, including rules for concentrating bowfire, unit facing, the use of magic, "grapple" attacks, and a new ability that some units and characters have - Fade (some things just refuse to die!). There are also "special" items and abilities for characters and units now - though limited in number to sixteen, these can range from special tactics and formations a unit can adopt (tortoise, stakes), abilities a unit can possess (water breathing, flying), an item for a character (army standard, exceptional armor, Holy Hand Grenade!), or a special characteristic that a character possesses (Mark of Evil, Taunt).
  5. New Armies. There are a host of new armies - 22 to be exact. Didn't see an army that was you in the basic set? Chances are your army can be found here (especially if you are a fan of Native Americans!).
  6. Miscellany. The rest of the rules are filled with Designer's notes, tips on how to play the game, rules for making your own unit/character types, and a scenario.

My overall impression? A very nice expansion, and well worth the price. This addition expands the FR! rules in all directions, giving it much greater depth and playability.

The new characters are nice, but the game still manages to keep the emphasis on units of troops, and not heroes. There is a great fantasy element involved, of course, but unlike other games in the same genre, characters do not dominate gameplay.

The magic system has been expanded to include even more different types of spellcasters and spells, and is more interesting than ever. Magic is still powerful, but now with Witch Hunters, Bards, and stored spells (spells in magic rings or scrolls), it's very possible to play an army that has no wizards, and have an even chance of winning.

(By the way, the magic system was one of my biggest criticisms of the game before - I felt it dominated the game a little too much, and was too powerful, and I made some suggestions in that area. The Chipco guys were very interested in the criticism, and even implemented one of my suggestions - Witch Hunters. So I'm living proof that Chipco does listen to their customers!)

The scenario is interesting (a fight between Hill Dwarfs and an Evil army over a rich gold mine), and I am told there will be "army packs" out soon that coincide with the scenario armies.

About the only problems I had with the expansion were typos. There were a few in there, like the Evil army wizard with the exceptional armor! (spellcasters cannot wear armor in FR! ;) ). There were also a few mis-spelled words, but they were not very prevalent, and easily overlooked.

I am chomping at the bit to try out a Colossus and some of the new spells. I have several armies worked up, but now it looks like I will have to rip them up and go back to the drawing board. Great job, Chipco! ;)

Official Errata For The Expansion Pack

  1. Alchemists cost 20 points (per the text).
  2. Witch Hunters cost 60 points (per the text).
  3. Leviathans may purchase grapple (per the text).
  4. Contraptions explode just like a HA (Heavy Artillery) hit, roll on the damage table.
  5. For the scenario, the Evil Army general is supposed to have the two magic items (exceptional armor and magic ward), not the wizard.
  6. All transports (canoes, wagons, and barges) cost 5 points.
  7. On the summary sheet combat results, #1, it should read:
    "If the winner's modified roll is double or more than the loser's, the loser is destroyed. If the winner's roll is more than the loser's, the loser is demoralized. If the rolls are equal, nothing happens."

Last Updates
31 December 1997cover picture added
19 June 1997page first published
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