Good evening everybody
Today I'm lucky enough to be showing you a review of the new Battletome - Disciples of Tzeentch. Games Workshop has supported the blog with a copy of the book and I would like to take this opportunity to thank them.
This new book is an evolution from the old Battletome and it's very exciting to see the new direction. There are many options inside and plenty of new ways to play Tzeentch armies. I will be discussing a few of these new sections to give you an overview of the book. So let's jump straight in!
The artwork in the book is really high quality with tons of new pieces that I have never seen before. There are some great pictures of the Archanites and Tzaangors and a really cool, basic couple of pages that show off cult colour schemes and ideas for your own forces. To some these may be less than alluring but I find them functional and give enough examples and ideas to have helped me choose my own without having to bog down the 'eavy metal team for hours and hours. I am a big fan of the artwork in this book.
So let's look at some of the fluff and how it can guide and support army selection:
You won't be surprised by any of the fluff around The Daemon side of the army, it mainly suggests that Demons are spawned through either warp rifts or are summoned by mortal Cults. It does state that Tzeentch is partly responsible for Slaanesh's disappearance but doesn't explain any further than that. There is no real revolution to Daemon fluff here, but there are different ways to field your Daemons if you look through the Battalions. There are so many Battalions in the book that I am not going to delve too deeply into them in this review. Just know that there are some really huge Battalion options in here and some of the rewards are super cool.
The Archanite Cult fluff in the Battletome is the more interesting part and appears to take place after the Realm Gate Wars, discussing how the Disciples of Tzeentch either strike from the wilderness or from inside the rising civilisations of the free people's. For me, it is by far the best part of the book and there is a real wealth of detail to inspire would-be collectors. There is even variations in the structure of each Cult allowing for even more customisation and uniqueness.
Each Cult is lead by a Cabal which controlled by a Magister, Tzaangor Shaman or a Fatemaster. It can be lead by one, two or even all three and makes up the beating heart of the Cult as each hero buffs units or hinders enemies in a different way. The Cabal can be joined by an honoured guest in the form of a Gaunt Summoner or with henchmen, which is Changelings or Ogroids. Under the Cabal is different sects which are made up for different variations of units, each of which get a Battalion which further rewards fluffy and thought-out play. I really like that the fluff in the book is more around the actual faction than how they fit in to the overall storyline. It allows for people to create their own stories with a huge degree of freedom, something that the Old World seemed to lack.
Here is a look at the new Shaman model:
The Tzaangor Enlightened:
And finally the Skyfires
There are 6 command traits for each of the Tzeentch factions, Daemon, Archanite and Mortals. The mortal Tzeentch army isn't really fleshed out at all in the book but there are enough bits from the command traits and access to their own artefacts to create a unique feeling army. The Archanites also have access to an artefact table whereas the Daemons have 2 tables of gifts - one for weapons and one for Daemonic powers. Under all of these sections it suggests suitably modelling and creating fluff for any boons you take. Awesome.
There are 2 psychic power charts that you can generate from with your various heroes - The Lore of Fate (Mortals and Archanites) and The Lore of Change (Daemons). There are the usual buff/debuff and missile (mortal wound) attacks here which is really cool.
Tzeentch armies can also take a pool of Destiny dice to show the fickle nature of Tzeentch. Some of the artefacts and traits/powers above can help to replenish these throughout the game but here is an overview of how they work - At the start of the game you roll a pool of 9 dice and keep them to one side (great if you use the new Tzeentch dice that GW released today), then at any point in the game you can choose to use one of the destiny dice to replace the result of a dice you would roll. You have to do this before you roll any further associated dice but then it uses that destiny dice and you can't use it again later on. This is a really useful mechanic for Tzeentch players and I can imagine it being a lot of fun!
There is a full Path to Glory section in the book allowing you to expand on the one in the Generals Handbook! For me, this is a really nice touch as I am a massive fan of escalation style campaigns to build my force and motivate me to paint. It also helps create a sense of an evolving story and keeps the player engrossed, rewarding their hero with skills for playing well, with Champion and Follower rewards tables as well as 3 Patronage of Tzeentch tables. Super cool.
In the back of the book is all you need to field the Disciples of Tzeentch in Pitched Battle play with full points listings and Battleline unit guidance. I am glad it has been included and I am even more glad that it only takes up one page. As a massive fan of the no points system, I feel that dedicating a single page means that Games Workshop still stand by the way they wanted the game to be played.
The Battleline units for Archanites are the Acolytes or the Tzaangors, for Daemons it is Pink Horrors as standard but you can take Burning Chariots if you take Daemons of Tzeentch Allegiance and a Herald.
Overall I have to say I am tremendously impressed with the book and it excites me for the future of the game. We could see a Free People's book with each of the different factions inside expanded or maybe it will be less than that. Maybe we will see a Duardin Battletome with each of their factions (maybe throw the Fyreslayers back in too with Warlord Traits and Artefacts. Who knows! It really could go anywhere! I will be doing an Archanite Cult as my next AoS project and will be creating some fluff for them inside our evolving campaign we hope to start later in the year.
I hope that you have enjoyed my review. Please feel free to comment below or ask questions. I will endeavour to answer them all. If there is anything you would like me to do differently next time (if GW want us to lol) then please say below. It will really help us.
For now, stay fluffy!