The Art of Warbands12/30/2004


Heironeous's Wall
The Art of Warbands



Heironeous's Wall
Sword of Heironeous
Warforged Fighter x2
Aramil, Adventurer
Eberk, Adventurer
Azer Raider x2
Rubble Assembly Tile
Statue Room
Corridor
Shrine of Justice

The forces of Lawful Good are brave and strong in defense but slow in movement. Using Lawful Good requires a defensive stance and sometimes an almost chess-like precision in your movements in order to maximize what little maneuverability the figures have. Its strong defenses, however, make it more forgiving than most factions, and therefore a good choice for new players. Heironeous's Wall is a 100-point warband that makes good use of Lawful Good's strengths.

Setup

If you win placement initiative, place your assembly tile so that it's longest side is against the longest side of the map. This minimizes the distance to the center of the battle grid and probably to your opponent as well. If your opponent's creatures have an easier time hitting you than you have hitting them, place the Shrine of Justice near the middle of the map and force the battle there. In the opposite case, you don't want to fight on the shrine -- it would give your opponent an advantage. Place your other tiles to give yourself cover against ranged attackers and to channel enemy forces into a narrow area. The best possible situation for you is to fight the battle in a two-square-wide hallway with the Warforged Fighters up front.

Set up your creatures on the outside rubble of the assembly tile. Lead with your Warforged Fighters unless your opponent is strong in ranged energy attacks. In that case, and especially if the enemy has fire attacks, place the Azer Raiders up front. Eberk should be near the front and Aramil should be next to him, followed by the others. Except in the case mentioned above, the Azer Raiders should normally be last because they have an easy time catching up with the rest of the band.

Tactics

Your biggest weakness is your slow speed. Use terrain as much as possible to keep ranged attackers from scoring hits. Simply keeping the Warforged Fighters up front negates most ranged attacks, because their Adamantine Laced special ability renders them immune to most archers. It doesn't render them immune to energy attacks, however, so protect against those early on.

Use Eberk's spiritual weapon and Aramil's ranged attack to soften up your opponents as you close. Unless the enemy warband consists mostly of archers, don't waste Aramil's sorcerer spells on magic missile. It may be tempting, but his ray of enfeeblement is far more useful. When you close with the enemy, use the ray of enfeeblement on whichever enemy creatures cause the most damage. If none of your opponent's creatures started out capable of doing more than 10 points of damage per attack, once Aramil is through with the enemy, the Warforged Fighters will have free reign.

If you suffer HP attrition because of ranged attacks and spells as you approach the enemy, use the healing spells of Eberk and the Sword of Heironeous on your tougher fighters prior to entering melee. Using those spells becomes more difficult once the fight gets personal.

Unless your opponent has creatures with area of effect attacks, keep your figures close together. While under Eberk's divine protection and the Sword of Heironeous's commander effect, your warband has a +8 bonus to morale saves and a minimum AC (excluding Aramil) of 21. Maximize this advantage by avoiding situations that give your opponent bonuses to attack rolls, such as flanking and charging. Narrow hallways are where you want to fight.

Five of your seven figures cause 10 points of damage with each attack, but it may still take some time to wear down tougher opponents. Be patient. Your high ACs, strong morale saves, and Aramil's ray of enfeeblement should keep you in the battle long enough to be dangerous.

Important things to remember are:

  • Aramil and the Warforged Fighters are the keys to this warband. Keep Aramil alive long enough to cast all of his spells and use heal spells on the Warforged Fighters whenever possible.

  • Because of this warband's slow speed, it will be difficult to choose the place of battle. If your opponent has no ranged attackers, use Aramil and Eberk to force him to come to you. Otherwise, use the initiative advantage gained by the Sword of Heironeous's commander rating to move to where you want to fight first.

  • Eberk's spiritual weapon is best cast on a low to medium AC creature with at least 15 HP. Optimally, this would be an enemy spellcaster or weak commander. The earlier you cast the spell, the more rounds it has to attack your opponent. It is often better to cast this spell rather than divine protection on the first round.

  • Eberk's magic weapon spell is a waste on your stronger fighters because they all do magic damage anyway. Unless you are facing creatures with excellent ACs, cast magic weapon on Aramil to improve his ranged attacks.

  • Don't forget the Azer Raiders have Immune Fire. Use this if necessary to protect your warband against fire attacks.

Strengths: Heironeous's Wall is crippling against most archery based warbands and strong against those with a large number of weak attackers, attackers with low to moderate attack rolls, or spell casters that use nondamaging spells with saving throws.

Weaknesses: Heironeous's Wall is weakest against warbands with ranged energy attacks, especially nonfire-based attacks that do not give saving throws. Creatures with both high attack bonuses and damage can be a problem (as they are for any warband).

Variations

  • To increase the offensive melee capability of this band, replace Eberk, Adventurer with another Warforged Fighter or with a Stonechild and Jozan, Cleric of Pelor.

  • To increase the number of creatures in this warband, replace Eberk and the two Azer Raiders with a Cleric of Moradin and four Men-at-Arms.

  • To increase this warband's ability to recover from long-ranged energy attacks, replace Eberk with a Healer and Jozan, Cleric of Pelor.

  • To increase your ranged attack and healing capabilities while making this band stronger against undead, replace the Sword of Heironeous with a Cleric of Lathander (making the warband Lathander's Wall).

Copy and paste the following into our Warband Generator.

100,Heironeous's Wall,1,12,7,12,32,32,206,206,209,210,4,5,6,8,10,''

Or launch Heironeous's Wall in our online Warband Generator.

About the Author

Bill W. Baldwin lives on the Space Coast of Florida with his gaming family of a wife, two daughters, and assorted pets. He started playing D&D in 1974 and was a wargamer and miniatures gamer even before that. Bill has been published in Dragon Magazine and does freelance work for Wizards of the Coast.

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