Coën wrote:Not yet (nor will I anytime soon, if only because the dice and rulebook are out of stock!) but it certainly does sound interesting. Not that I've got any clue on the way it works, but simply because everybody is rather enthusiastic from what I've read!
Now starting yet another new game is probably not a good idea anyway, but what is especially tempting is the small forces needed to play.
Care to share the way it works a bit, comparison with SBG for example?
Like SBG, its one of those 'easy to learn, difficult to master' type games. The core rules are nice and simple, and the skill lies in knowing your battleboard.
At the start of your turn, your army generates SAGA dice, and the number it generates depends on the army composion (armies that are levy heavy will generate few dice, while hearthgaurd heavy armies will generate more). You then roll these dice and the scores you get effect what you can do. Each faction has it's own unique battleboard, which allows it to use faction specific actions. Each ability on the board has a 'cost' and you spend SAGA dice to activate these abilities. SAGA dice are also used to activate units (i.e. if you don't invest dice in a unit type, then that turn you can't use that unit), and what dice are needed to activate a unit are based on the unit's quality - e.g. levy only activate on the rarest scores (correspond to 4-5s and 6s on a D6), while hearthguard can be activated with any score (this reflects the fact that hearthguard are the proffessional troops and ready to fight whereas levy are joe farmer called up for millitia duty).
Unlike SBG, there's no Move Phase, Shoot Phase, Fight Phase. Instead you can just activate a unit and decide on how to use it. And you can even use the same unit multiple times (although doing so generates 'fatigue' which can be used by your opponant to reduce the units effectiveness in combat, and if a unit gains enough fatigue it can't do anything until you declare it's taing a 'rest' action). This can be very effective - in my last game, my Anglo-Dane levy pincusioned a unit of Welsh warriors, taking 8 out in three rounds of shooting in the same turn (which is ludicrously good luck because as I said before, it's hard to get levy to activate, levy can only gain fatigue twice before becoming useless, my opponant used the fatigue that the levy got for multiple actions to make it harder to wound his men, you save against shooting on a 4+, and you can only fire 1 shot for every 2 levy (rounding up) per shooting action).
One similarity that SAGA does have with SBG is that it does have a sort of 'Heroic Move' rule. In SAGA, your Warlord can call a special action when he moves which allows another nearby unit to also activate without the need to spend SAGA dice. However, unlike SBG, the hero doesn't have to 'lead' them - it's perfectly legal to send a unit off to charge the enemy front lines while the warlord legs it for the hills
Another difference with SBG and a way in which the rules are simple is that there are no complex armylists as such. Each faction is the same - you spend 1pt to get so many men, with the exact number of men depending on the quality of them; hearthguard are 4 per 1pt, warriors 8 per 1pt and levy 12 per 1pt. Once you've spent all your points, you can then split up/combine groups to form units (must be done before deployment and you can't split up/combine during play), although you can only combine groups of the same type (e.g. you can combine two groups of hearthguard, but you can't combine a group of hearthguard and a group of levy). Each faction then has special rules which effect what equipment each group has to add variety (e.g. Anglo-Dane huscarls can take Dane axes, Normans can have a unit of warriors equiped with crossbows, Welsh can take a lot of mounted men, Vikings can upgrade a unit ofhearthgaurd to Berserkers).
[quote=hithero"]I do and will be working on a LOTR variant
Sounds interesting - would definately make a good game for Dunland/Rohan boarder skirmishes.