Armies of Arcana - The Game

Game Terms

Within the game rules there are some basic concepts and terms to be familiar with, here is a guide to some of the main ones.

Dice Types - d2, d3, d6, 2d6, etc. This is a common wargame terminology; the first number tells how many dice to roll, and the d# describes what type of dice to roll. Armies of Arcana was designed to only require the normal six sided dice. d6’s can be used to roll d3’s: 1 - 2 = 1, 3 - 4 = 2, 5 - 6 = 3. d6 dice are used in the game are they are readily available. The general dice convention for Armies of Arcana is that low dice rolls are good and high rolls are bad, in the unit profiles the numbers given in the tables are the number the dice roll must be lower than or equal to in order to count as a successful roll.

Engaged Units - When enemy units are in contact they are considered engaged with each other, indicating melee (hand-to-hand) combat is occurring. An engagement or a melee both refer to a cluster of engaged units.

Turns - The basic order of the game is determined by game turns. One game turn is the time it takes for all players to complete all six phases in the turn, before starting over again. Most games last 5 to 8 turns, and a turn typically takes 10 to 20 minutes of real time depending on the number of units and amount of engagements to be resolved in the turn.

Charges - When one unit moves to begin an engagement with another enemy unit. Armies of Arcana offers no particular bonuses to the unit which makes the move to engage, as it is assumed the other unit was simultaneously moving to engage as well, or was bracing for the attack. Charge markers are provided in the templates to help you remember what units were charging in the turn.

Phases - Phases break up turns into particular events; players move in the movement phase, cast spells in the magic phase, fire missiles in the missile phase, fight hand-to-hand combat in the melee phase, and resolve behaviour tests in the morale phase. All players complete the current phase before the next phase is started.

Base Units - When a game is played, players should agree to a particular size of figure to play with. To allow players to use any line of figures they like, figures are placed on consistently sized bases. For example, players using 25/28mm figures should mount infantrymen on 25mm (1") square bases, players using 15mm figures should use 15mm square bases. Larger models then get placed on multiples of these bases. A cavalry figure would be placed on 2 bases, an ogre sized figure on 4 bases and a giant figures on 9 bases. Thus, in 28mm scale a centaur (base 2) would have a 25mm by 50mm base, a Troll (base 4) would have a 50mm by 50mm base, and an adult dragon (base 9) stands on a 75mm by 75mm base. A base ½ model is on a base that has half the surface area of a base 1 (for 25mm this would be around 17 to 18 mm).

Units - Any model or group of models that make up their own fighting force. For example, 20 spearmen and their leader, a vehicle with its draft animals and crew, or a single monster are all considered to be units.

Units have profiles which are used to resolve the phases. Explanations of the terms and an example are shown below.

Name VP Move Wounds Armour Magic Morale Melee Missile Special
This is name of the troop type Victory Points. This is the relative cost of the unit This is the maximum distance in inches the model can move in a single movement phase. This box will also include any terrain bonuses and the flying distance in inches if the unit can fly This is the number of successful hits a model can take before it is considered fallen or dead and can no longer fight in the game Indicates the level of protection against hits. Roll equal to or lower than this number to save. The box also will contain special abilities realating to the save. Shields give +1 to the save for missile attacks. Indicates the level of protection against magical attacks. Roll equal to or lower than this number to save. Indicates if the unit is sensitive or immune to certain types of magic Indicates the bravery of the unit. Roll 2d6 less than or equal to the number to pass a morale test Shows the number of attacks, the skill and the strength plus any bonus or penalties. Some units have a choice of attacks (denoted by or) some have different attacks - for example cavalry will often get one attack from the rider and one from the mount Shows the range, number of attacks, skill, strength and any bonuses for ranged attacks. Some units have multiple missile choices Indicates the base size, and special bonuses or attacks. Also indicated are any extra points costs for options (such as infiltration) and elite status
Dwarven Crossbow 26 5" 1 3 4 9 1 / 2 xbow (18") 1/2 Str (2) None