Ultimate Battle (PFRPG)

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Master the battlefield like never before!

This rules supplement delves into mass combat with the same verve and creativity as its companion product, Ultimate Rulership does to the more peaceable aspects of ruling a kingdom. From advanced tactics and strategy to casualties and prisoners of war, Ultimate Battle takes you from ambush to aftermath with new systems for camouflage and scouting, casualties and prisoners of war, tactical initiative and battle zones, and commanders and mercenaries. In addition, it provides you with expansions of existing rules, including new equipment and dozens of new tactics, command boons, and creature and character special abilities help bring almost any army to life, and robust rules for battlefield conditions from terrain and weather to visibility and the fog of war. This terrific expansion to the mass combat rules found in the Pathfinder Roleplaying Game Ultimate Campaign rulebook contains everything you need to recruit, train, equip, maintain, and unleash your armies on the battlefield like never before, with 14 brand-new tactics including Cavalry Sweep, Pike Square, and Strafing Skirmishers; 24 new command boons like Death Before Dishonor, Implacable Advance, and Master Recruiter; 21 types of army equipment from firearms to magic shields, chariots to howdahs; and 51 army special abilities, including abilities for armies comprised of PC classes.

Pick up this 38-page PDF today to bring amazing depth and dimension to mass combat in your campaign and Make Your Game Legendary!

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Very Impresive

5/5

My group found the refinements found in this book, to Ultimate Campaigns' mass combat system, easy to use and to understand. I personally found the refinements to army creation far less of a headache then I was anticipating.

Well done


An Endzeitgeist.com review

5/5

After the superb "Ultimate Rulership", this would be the second one of Legendary Games‘ offerings to expand the rules of "Ultimate Campaign". Page-count-wise, this pdf is 38 pages long, 1 page front cover, 2 pages of editorial, 1 page SRD, 1 page ToC, 1 page introduction, 3 pages of advertisement, 1 page back cover, leaving us with 28 pages of content, so let’s take a look, shall we?

So, what do we get here? Essentially, an expansion of the mass combat rules used in Ultimate Campaign. We begin with a short summary of four zones: Camp zone, which is the “base” of the army, command zone, from where the battle is dictated, melee zone and ranged zone – said zones are abstract and not geographically distinct entities. Now first, we get a fixing of strategy – 5 types of strategy may be changed in lesser degrees without morale checks, in greater degrees with a morale check penalized by a number equal to the steps a strategy is changed. Each strategy has positive and negative influence on OM and DV (Offense Modifiers and Defensive Value) and also includes a casualty-modifier that applies to damage dealt to you and your enemies – best of all, this system fixes the doubling effect in the default standard rules for a more concise and strategic flux of battle. Two thumbs up!

Now the battle is grouped in phases – a tactical phase in which commanders issue strategy and special tactics followed by the ranged phase, the melee phase and finally, the rout phase, where morale may see units routed and broken. In the tactical phase, commanders compare their Profession (Soldier)-skill-checks: The winner reveals his strategy after the loser, allowing the commander to better adjust on the fly to an opponent’s gambits. Furthermore, by exceeding an enemy commander’s check by 5 or more, the commander can force the hostile army to reveal one of the tactics available to the army. In the ranged phase, armies may attack (via ranged weapons), advance or hold their position. Rather awesome – concise, easy to use information is given on how to handle difficult terrain like trenches, cities etc., with the DV of the structures determining the challenge. We also, thankfully, get rules for friendly fire with ranged weapons – nice catch here!

The rules for the melee phase have been changed as well – unlike in the standard rules, melee is not a constant whacking, but instead sees both armies checking for routs after attacking each, with the next round approaching. THANK YOU. The default made no sense and resulted in bland exchanging of whack-a-mole-rolls until one army falls – I much prefer this solution! Now on to the rout phase: At the end of a melee phase, the bashing is not repeated: Instead, armies check for morale – those that fail have their morale score reduced. Upon reaching zero morale, a loyalty-check may reset the score to 1, but sees the army fleeing, whereas a failed loyalty check sees the army disband – and yes, said loyalty-checks come with heavy cumulative penalties. Now being routed is bad – as any Warhammer-player knows, and while in these rules, the fleeing army has a chance to regroup to the camp zone, said escape is anything but guaranteed. Sounding a general retreat is also possible, but also carries a morale penalty with it – still, fighting another day is preferable to annihilation… Also neat: Mercenary armies and their lack of penalties for the kingdom upon being routed also get a sort mentioning. This chapter fixes just about all of the rough edges the system in Ultimate Campaign had in favor of a more dynamic and versatile combat – AWESOME!

Now, as you probably know, historic armies almost never fought until total annihilation – hence, we are introduced to the army conditions: Bloodied, Defeated, Destroyed and Disbanded. Bloodied armies can only be “cured” by reforming it and the condition is applied every time an army drops below half its hit points, reducing the ACR by 1 for all intents and purposes – and yes, this penalty is cumulative. Defeated armies have 10% dead, 1d4x10% severely wounded members and can be taken prisoner – these armies had their hp reduced to 0. Destroyed armies result from defeated armies – upon being attacked by the enemy (at -2 to their DV, ouch!) and if the enemy is at least half its size, the battered, defeated army is destroyed for all intents and purposes – 1d6x10% dead, 1d4x10% severely wounded and the rest deserted. To add insult to injury, the kingdom incurs a penalty of 1 to fame and the city from which it was recruited may demand a monument for the fallen. Now disbanded armies (failed morale and loyalty checks) have a devastating effect on morale of allied armies and also result in population-loss for the kingdom – 50% leave for safer, greener pastures. The kingdom also loses stability, fame and loyalty and the recruitment city incurs a penalty of -2 to law. OUCH!

Now fatigue in battle is covered as well as the topic of healing after battle- all tied neatly together with available buildings (herbalists and alchemists help just as cathedrals etc. do – neat!) and disease as one of the great agents of the reaper also becomes a factor: The factor of plagues is detailed as well herein and results in even more death – and strategy, of course! Holding that hospital suddenly seems like a very worthwhile endeavor! Have I mentioned the concise and cool rules for Parley (and breaking the temporary truce?) – nice indeed!

Now we also get tactics – quite a few of them, actually: Want to execute a cavalry sweep, for example? It allows you to have your army attack two hostile armies in one battle phase, but at OM – 4 and DV -2 and only half the damage – still, at times surely an option that proves to be useful. Covering Fire, an onslaught that is particularly reckless (and casualty-prone/bad for DV, but also superb for offense), pursuing foes, initiating pincer-maneuvers, creating "Landsknechtshaufen", i.e. pike hedgehogs, strafing skirmishers – the tactics available should more than positively influence engagements, allowing for a much more varied and cool combat between individual armies and also offer cool additional incentives to keep well-trained veteran units around.

Now sooner or later the die has been literally cast and the battle won or lost – so in the aftermath of victory, further options abound: From the historically accurate paying of ransom money to the execution of enemy leaders, the attrition of manpower and the option to pillage and plunder the countryside, intern soldiers or recruit forced labor – a lot of different options allow an army to follow distinct lines in their conduct with others, potentially shaping the reputation of the kingdom they adhere to. And yes, for the more morally, let’s say…flexible commanders, committing massacres is also a distinct possibility, though one that should be well contemplated.

Now another issue of mass combat as displayed in the standard-rules would be that it breaks apart as soon as an army e.g. consists of few, but powerful adversaries – be they dragons or stone giants. Thankfully, the pdf actually offers an incredibly easy and yet concise, sensible solution to the issue by allowing for even armies of one and similar small-sized armies – complete with equipment, camouflage and ACR-modification. This is not only brilliant; it is all but REQUIRED. Thank you so very much!

The effect of a general of other great leaders present on the field of battle and a kingdom’s overall disposition also now feature in the complex equation of mass-combat, with the superb rules from Ultimate Rulership thankfully also being addressed – this is synergy of the type I love and expect. How is the influence of great commanders displayed? Via the leadership bonus, which depends on the skill ranks in Profession (soldier) and e.g. the leadership score, but less so on magical improvements – headbands of intellect and similar ways of metagaming the skill up only are half as effective.

Now the easiest way to expand these rules may be the addition of new boons since they are based on the capabilities of characters and soldiers – and hence we also get an array of boons. And oh boy, are they oozing flavor – Take "Death before Dishonor" or the offense specialists that benefit from an "Implacable Advance", AoE/channel negative energy adding the option for magical barrages or allowing units to heal themselves: These boons are awesome, even more so since they can be made permanent for a vast array of different tricks, specializations and distinct elite-units.

Now armies don’t grow on trees as you might know and while Ultimate Rulership has delivered vastly superior recruitment rules (both standard and UR are covered here), this book adds another facet: Recruits are not yet soldiers – they cost a kingdom and need to be equipped, trained etc. And yes, equipping chariots, howdahs, mounts, magical armors, siege weaponry, weapons of different quality – all that and so much more becomes possible with these rules – all while remaining sensible with building-requirements, fitting all together like a concise, well-oiled rules-machinery. This is not all, though – reserve armies by building and yes, even a vast array of special abilities, from spawn creation to breath weapons await your command, resulting in even more varied armies that should bring the wonder and distinct differences between forces to the front.

Now whether it’s for a "Chain of Dogs"-like scenario or simply for a situation akin to Sabaton’s "The Price of a Mile" – marching armies and pushing them forwards is no easy task and this supplement also covers rules for marching armies: Camouflage, ambushes, supply trans, living off the land – all covered! The same holds true for difficult terrains, rules for visibility and even weather and high altitudes! The pdf concludes with an index of the pdf’s tables.

Conclusion:

Editing and formatting are top-notch, I didn’t notice any significant glitches. Layout adheres to Legendary Games unobtrusive two-column standard and we get beautiful full-color one-page spreads of three artworks by Tim Kings-Lynne and Mike Lowe alongside depictions of various banners and crests. The pdf comes fully bookmarked and in two versions, with the second one being more printer-friendly.

Jason Nelson, as one of the masterminds behind Ultimate Campaign’s rules and head-honcho of Legendary Games dives head-first into a supplement that had me skeptical at best on first sight: The page-count is simply not that impressive. Add to that the fact that the rules in Ultimate Campaign, by virtue of the limited space available and the variety of topics covered fell short of their potential and we have a supplement that had anything but an easy standing with me. I’ve long been into mass combat, coming to pen and paper roleplaying via the route of Warhammer, but so far, neither Adamant Entertainment’s mass combat rules, nor 3.X’s Cry Havoc did it for me and Ultimate Campaign, while better, also fell short of my expectations in that regard.

Until now. This pdf is PLATINUM. Not gold, platinum. It irons out many of the issues of the basic system. It provides superior synergy with both standard rules and Ultimate Rulership. It expands the tactical options exponentially. It covers all the topics, from marches to commanders to special qualities and manages to end the rather trite attrition-rolling of mass combat melee in favor of a much more rewarding and tactical solution. This, ladies and gentlemen, is not only required. Anyone using mass combat without this book should really contemplate to stop now and shell out the bucks. I have almost never in my career as a reviewer witnessed a pdf so densely-packed with crucial coolness - concisely-written, Jason Nelson delivers mass combat as it ought to be: Abstract, but challenging and strategic – with this supplement, true strategic showdowns, complex military operations and desperate gambits all become possible. This pdf allows you to create brilliant battles of wits between enemy commanders and the PCs on a level that was, with the basic system, unthinkable. What we have here is a candidate for my Top Ten of 2013, a required purchase and a book that should be part of any PFRPG-DM’s library if s/he is only remotely interested in either Kingmaker or any other form of mass combat – final verdict? Unsurprising 5 stars + seal of approval, given without even the remotest hesitation. Cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war!

Endzeitgeist out.


Sound the Call to Arms!

5/5

Ultimate Battle is a book/PDF for Legendary Games' Ultimate Plug-Ins line, meant for use in any sort of a campaign. As the name suggests it expands widely on the mass combat rules from Ultimate Campaign. Be warned, you WILL need them to properly use this.

The PDF proper has about 36 pages, of which 30 or so are devoted to the actual new and expanded rules. First is the 'Field of Battle' section, covering battles proper. It slightly reworks the casualties taken and inflicted by the various strategies to reduce the doubling effect granted by the bonuses and penalties to OM and DV already grant. It also divides the battlefield up into various zones (Camp, Command, Ranged, and Melee) to abstractly display just where the armies are in relation to each other.

It adds a Rout phase to the battle turn, which is when units check their morale to see if they keep fighting, run, give up, or whatever. It also expands on the three other phases as well -- Tactics now allows you to change your battle plan from turn to turn to respond to enemy actions, which is made easier by skill in Profession [soldier] (very realistic!); you can advance as well as fire and hold your ground in the Ranged phase. And if you shoot into a melee, better be careful not to hit your own troops! Melee phase is much as described in UC. But it is followed by the Rout phase, in which armies can be driven off if their morale is damaged enough. And if some of your units run, in a very real-world fashion others will take hits to their morale that may send them fleeing as well. You can also sound a retreat to pull out of the battle at this point. Just better hope the enemy doesn't pursue!

It also expands on the rules for armies that lose. They can be bloodied (damaged but still capable of fighting, especially if they get reinforcements), defeated (take losses and can be taken prisoner, attacked anew, or simply massacred as the victor desires), destroyed (like defeated but worse, as your country also takes damage from the loss), and disbanded (everyone runs away and half of them leave the country in shame, your other armies suffer hits to morale, and both the unit's home city AND your country suffer from it). One little touch I like is that if you try recruiting an army nearby a battle where enemy forces disbanded, you can get a one-time Loyalty bonus for recruiting because some of the defeated enemy troops join up. Once again, this is a bit of real-world history here!

There are expanded rules for dealing with fatigued troops and post-battle healing, as well as a very nasty and realistic threat of disease. It also allows you to attempt Parley to offer surrender, demand surrender, or simply bluster at each other.

UB then gives us a section on tactics both new and old. This is one of my favorite parts of the whole PDF. You can now use cavalry and light troops as skirmishers, make a Pike Block to defend other troops, flank and feint enemy units, retreat from battle or pursue someone else who retreats. Really you can do just about anything that could be done in a real battle with this rules. This section by itself is worth the price of the entire book to me.

Then we get the victory and aftermath of battles. You can take enemy commanders hostage, or execute them, or duel them. All of these have effects on both you and your kingdom beyond the battlefield. For instance, get a name for executing enemy leaders and you start adding Infamy to you and your nations' name. It also gives rules for how battlefield losses and victories affect both surviving armies and your nation. Losing soldiers not only affects how big an army you can have but also hurts your nation's Economy, Loyalty, and Stability. You can also plunder an enemy or be plundered, which not only adds (or costs) wealth in the form of BPs but can destroy buildings and terrain improvements. It also gives you options for what you can do with both POWs and captured civilians, ranging from use as forced labor to internment to simply massacring them all. Again, all of these have effects on both your nation and you, with some of them providing a little wealth but most of them costing in either Consumption or reputation.

Next is a section on Building Armies. Once again, it greatly expands on the rules given in UC, with new rules covering the size and CR of armies. The size of a troop is also enlarged when dealing with creatures with a CR below 1, which at the high levels (regiments, brigades, and legions) can lead to some gigantic forces.

The roles UC gives to both Commanders and Command Boons are expanded as well, with skill at both command and combat playing a greater role in determining your ability at generalship as well as how many armies your kingdom can have. It also provides some new Command Boons, including a few shifted over from Tactics in UC such as Cavalry Experts and Expert Flankers because it's felt that boons better represent a unit's training versus tricks anyone can use in battle. There are way too many new Boons for me to go into here -- suffice to say that you can pretty much do anything you can imagine with them and the new tactics, leading to very flexible battle plans.

It also provides new rules for recruiting and equipping armies. They both cost a little more than the rules in UC but also provide more flexibility for armies and commanders alike. You also can train troops after recruiting and even hire mercenaries, which is a quicker way to get skilled veteran troops provided they stay loyal. UB give us a pretty solid list of various items of equipment you can provide for your troops. Everything from Chariots to Howdahs to Reach Weapons to even Firearms and various Siege Weapons (the latter including cannons, bombards, and war wagons). There are rules for what it costs to keep armies active and in reserve, as well as complications concerning supply lines. This section ends with an expansion on the Special Abilities from UC.

The last part has a section covering troops on the march, with everything from scouting to forced marches to ambushes and living off the land getting some detail. We also get guidelines for how things like terrain, visibility, and weather can affect a battle.

Really, if you like mass combat that feels like real-world battles, you WILL want this PDF. If you like your mass combat very simple and abstract you might want to stick to the basic rules in UC, though even then this book can introduce some complications that can be used as the background in adventures. For instance, what if your camp gets plundered by troops gathering supplies while you're in the dungeon, or your home town gets hit by plague after sickened troops pass through? It is a GREAT PDF if you like this sort of detail the way I do. I'll say 4.5 stars because not everyone uses the mass combat rules, but if you do this will be a tremendous help, so up to 5 for my final rating.


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Webstore Gninja Minion

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Now available!

Liberty's Edge

Woo-hoo!


I've only been able to give it a skim but it looks great. I'm looking forward to getting its companion tome Ultimate Campaign.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

Up and available all over the place! Glad you are enjoying, Eric. Reviews forthcoming I hope!


Any chance this will be available at GenCon?

Webstore Gninja Minion

Jboygold wrote:
Any chance this will be available at GenCon?

Ultimate Rulership will be, but not this book (as far as I know).

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

Yep, alas we were not able to get the product finished up and pushed through the publish cycle in time to get them to Indy on time.

It is, however, available for preorder through Paizo.com - I'll probably receive my shipment after GenCon and can drop off the books at Paizo then. Alternatively, you can purchase the book now through our print-on-demand service, as described on our website.


Well, I DID just finished a very lengthy review for this book that the site somehow promptly ate. But I'm not bitter!

I'll re-write it up later tonight and then probably post it tomorrow.

But for now just two quick questions:

1) On page 6 under Disbanded Armies it says that if you try to create a new army in a fort or settlement with 3 hexes of a disbanded enemy army that you get a one-time bonus on your next Loyalty check for recruitment. But we're not told just how much of a bonus it is.

2) Also, am I missing it or is there nothing under either new tactics or command boons for field fortifications? Or will that be something for Ultimate War?

And I want to say that I really enjoy the idea of 'close siege weapons' including war-wagons. Between those, firearms, and reach weapons, and the tactics and boons to use them properly, you could create a Hussite army* with this!

* -- Or almost any other.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

Thanks for the great review, Eric!


Thanks for making such a great PDF. The options this one gives to players and DMs interested in mass combat is amazing.

Though I am left wondering just what will be left for Ultimate War. You seem to have covered a lot of things very well right here.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

Never fear, there is plenty of awesome yet to come. :)


Paizo Superscriber; Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

Jason - I checked Paizo and also the Legendary Games site, but didn't see an answer to this question.

Is there any plan to offer a print + PDF bundle? (or similar discount for those who purchase both?)


I just saw that Ultimate Battle is ranked at 4 on the list of the top ten downloads from other companies on Paizo. Congrats on the well-deserved popularity of the product!

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

Cintra Bristol wrote:

Jason - I checked Paizo and also the Legendary Games site, but didn't see an answer to this question.

Is there any plan to offer a print + PDF bundle? (or similar discount for those who purchase both?)

If your purchase the PDF of Ultimate Battle from our website, you also receive a coupon code for $3 off the print edition. At this time, there is no bundle available on Paizo.com.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

Print editions of Ultimate Battle will be making their way to the Paizo store this week, so anyone who has preordered should be getting their soon!

Webstore Gninja Minion

Print edition arrived in the warehouse!

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

Thanks to Mom's Delivery Service (who happens to live very close to the Paizo offices and dropped them off for me)! :)


And a very hearty congratulations on Legendary games for having both Ultimate Battle AND Ultimate Rulership in the Top Ten Other Company Downloads on the site!

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

Thanks! Don't forget Faerie Passions as well at #8!

I've started back to work on Ultimate War, so we'll see how soon we can get another friend to the party!

Liberty's Edge

I had a quick question, Jason. In Ultimate Campaign, armies are capped at a size of 2,000 soldiers, which as has probably been stated elsewhere, is a bit small. Especially when one considers the size of several medieval battles in which armies of several thousands into the tens of thousands clashed.

I was wondering if your rules provided for larger army sizes? Or will we just have to stick to the Ultimate Campaign rules and simply stack armies of 1,000 and 2,000 soldiers together?


I'm not sure, but I think they use 'army' as a replacement for the more general term 'unit' used in other games to cover a group of soldiers. IT sure feels that way to me, anyway.

So you can have an army composed of several smaller (and differently equipped and trained) 'armies'.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

Eric has the right of it. An "army" just means *THAT* particular military formation. You can have multiple armies on each side.

I used that naming convention in Ultimate Battle and Ultimate Rulership as it is the same as used in Ultimate Campaign, which was the term originated in the Kingmaker mass combat rules upon which the UCamp rules are based.

Ultimate War has an alternate "combined arms" method for building units that uses that term in place of "armies."


Just wondering, are there rules for building navies in this book? That'd be really useful for my island campaign I'm running.


Odraude wrote:
Just wondering, are there rules for building navies in this book? That'd be really useful for my island campaign I'm running.

That appears to be coming up in the sequel, Ultimate War.

With my Kingmaker game up and running, I'm wondering if there'll be any rules for riverine navies?

Liberty's Edge

This is the first I've heard about Ultimate War. When is it expected to be released?


They're halfway done on the manuscript, so probably not for a while yet.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

Ultimate War is mentioned in the preview page at the back of Ultimate Battle and has been mentioned in our site previews a few times. It does include naval combat, both a simplified version if you mostly just want to use ships for transport and artillery, and a more robust naval combat system for those who like that sort of thing.


That's good to hear. I know my players want to have more of a navy since they are on an island nation. This'll help.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

We live but to serve...

There will definitely be more ship types available, drom canoes and rafts to barges, greatships, and galleasses.


Ultimate War has an alternate "combined arms" method for building units that uses that term in place of "armies."

There will definitely be more ship types available, drom canoes and rafts to barges, greatships, and galleasses.

The more I hear about this book the more and more I want it.

But what are 'drom canoes'? And galleasses? You'll be including rules for the battleships of the Venetian fleet? Oh my, this is such good news.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

That's supposed to be "FROM canoes and rafts to barges, greatships, and galleasses." :)


According to the new rules a regiment would cost 8BP per week to maintain and a Legion would cost 40BP to maintain. Given the way that BP works in the game this seems like a LOT of money to be spending on a single army.

Is this correct or am I missing something?


Hey Jason, what’s the 411 on Ultimate war? It’s been a while and I haven’t heard anything about when it’s releasing. Hopefully, you haven’t run into any problems on your end. Ultimate Battle and Ultimate Rulership were by far my favorite of your products, and I’m looking forward to the sequel. Either way, thanks for the awesome products!


Valantrix: the last they said anything about Ultimate War, it's supposed to be out this month. So here's hoping!


Eric Hinkle wrote:

Valantrix: the last they said anything about

Ultimate War, it's supposed to be out this month. So here's hoping!

Thanks Eric! I hope so. I really want this one.


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Reviewed first on Endzeitgeist.com, then submitted to Nerdtrek and GMS magazine and posted here, on OBS and d20pfsrd.com's shop. Wow, and I thought Ultimate Rulership was an impressive beast of a book...


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Wow, those are some really glowing rules. It looks like Legendary Games has put out a superior alternative/supplement for both the kingdom rules and the mass combat rules from Ultimate Campaign. I hope when others, such as Paizo use these rules in the future, they make use of the updates from Legendary Games.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

Endzeitgeist wrote:
Reviewed first on Endzeitgeist.com, then submitted to Nerdtrek and GMS magazine and posted here, on OBS and d20pfsrd.com's shop. Wow, and I thought Ultimate Rulership was an impressive beast of a book...

Thanks so much for the glowing review, Endy! I'll be linking it to our page soon.

I thought I'd also pop in and pass on my regrets at the delays in getting Ultimate War in the pipe as the third installment in this series. I had hoped to have it out by October, but a number of circumstances combined to make us decide to move our planned Kickstarter up to October rather than putting it off until later, and that project has been an enormous amount of work and has really cut into my writing time (as well as requiring me to shift creative gears to get 17 Gothic products knitted together into a single cohesive whole).

That said, that job is now close to being done. The final two Gothic products are now out and available - Greg Vaughan's new adventure Feasting at Lanterngeist and my final installment in the realm of horror-themes/grimoire products, the Mutant Manifesto - and I am finishing up the spells table for the Gothic Campaign Compendium, which should be the last piece of creative work for the book (though some final layouts and approvals are still in order).

Being able to close the book on that means being able to turn back to my pile of "MUST FINISH!!!" products, and after zipping up a few products that are about 95% finished, the completion of Ultimate War is at the top of the list. The art by Tim Kings-Lynne is in and is fantastic, and I certainly intend for the written content to live up to the high standard set by its predecessors in the Ultimate line. Out by Halloween - alas, it came and went - but my new goal is out by Thanksgiving! I appreciate your patience and your support and hope that every product we do exceeds your expectation and (of course) Makes Your Game Legendary!


Jason Nelson wrote:
I thought I'd also pop in and pass on my regrets at the delays in getting Ultimate War in the pipe as the third installment in this series.

As impatient as I am to get my hands on Ultimate War, I do hope you manage to get some R&R once in a while. I can only imagine how draining the Kickstarter must've been for you guys. But yeah, glad to hear that Ultimate War is coming out soon.


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Heine Stick wrote:
Jason Nelson wrote:
I thought I'd also pop in and pass on my regrets at the delays in getting Ultimate War in the pipe as the third installment in this series.
As impatient as I am to get my hands on Ultimate War, I do hope you manage to get some R&R once in a while. I can only imagine how draining the Kickstarter must've been for you guys. But yeah, glad to hear that Ultimate War is coming out soon.

What he said. Rest assured, when it comes out I'll definitely be getting a copy!

And that's a typically great review there, End.


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Thanks, Eric! This one took me quite some time since simulating the effects and new strategies etc. took quite some effort to judge - but oh boy, Jason Nelson has even surpassed my already high expectations for his work!


So question:

From pg. 14 -

Daring Maneuvers: An army with this boon can overextend
itself to press home an advantage, though this leaves its flanks
exposed. The army gains a +4 OM (or AV) bonus but takes a -2
penalty to DV until it acts in the next Battle Phase.

What exactly does AV refer to?

Thanks

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

AV = Attack Value, and it refers to an alternative split rule of having AV (Attack Value) and RV (Ranged Value) in place of a composite OM (Offense Modifier). This was part of the combined arms rules that I was working on and eventually decided to split off as a separate rule set in the upcoming Ultimate War.

Its presence in Ultimate Battle is an inadvertent leftover.


Much appreciated. I was confused for a second there.


I was wondering if there will rules in Ultimate War for mass combat on a slightly smaller scale, where distance is measured in 10's or 100's of feet and time is measured in rounds instead of 1d6 hours?

My group is planning some full scale engagements with the PCs fighting along side the army and while Ultimate Battle and Ultimate Rulership have been immensely helpful, I am still trying to find/write a rules for that smaller scale.

Thanks.

Daniel 'Tzizimine' Clarke

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

tzizimine wrote:

I was wondering if there will rules in Ultimate War for mass combat on a slightly smaller scale, where distance is measured in 10's or 100's of feet and time is measured in rounds instead of 1d6 hours?

My group is planning some full scale engagements with the PCs fighting along side the army and while Ultimate Battle and Ultimate Rulership have been immensely helpful, I am still trying to find/write a rules for that smaller scale.

Thanks.

Daniel 'Tzizimine' Clarke

At that scale, you're really not far off from regular old Pathfinder RPG combat with the standard rules. That said, there are ways to try to make that work with mass combat, and I'll have some ideas in Ultimate War for playing around in that space.


Jason Nelson wrote:
tzizimine wrote:

I was wondering if there will rules in Ultimate War for mass combat on a slightly smaller scale, where distance is measured in 10's or 100's of feet and time is measured in rounds instead of 1d6 hours?

My group is planning some full scale engagements with the PCs fighting along side the army and while Ultimate Battle and Ultimate Rulership have been immensely helpful, I am still trying to find/write a rules for that smaller scale.

Thanks.

Daniel 'Tzizimine' Clarke

At that scale, you're really not far off from regular old Pathfinder RPG combat with the standard rules. That said, there are ways to try to make that work with mass combat, and I'll have some ideas in Ultimate War for playing around in that space.

True, but doing actions for 10's or 20's of a group slows things down pretty quickly. I have tried making the rules from Warpath work, but the numbers are so clunky that they break. At this point, I have been trying the old Cry Havoc rules and while they are close, they are completely different from the rules presented in Ultimate Campaign or Ultimate Battle.


I may be misunderstanding your intent, Daniel, but if you haven't done so already, I suggest you find a copy of Reign of Winter #5: Rasputin Must Die! and check out the troop subtype featured in that tome. It does a rather decent job at portraying battle against many foes without slowing things down. I used it with great success in my Carrion Crown game and I think it works well for situations such as large battles with the heroes involved in the nitty gritty of the battlefield.

Scarab Sages RPG Superstar 2008 Top 4; Contributor; Publisher, Legendary Games

That is, in fact, one of the mechanics we'll be presenting as a solution to the problem of intermediate-sized battles too big for adventuring parties and too small to be mega-abstract large-scale battle scenarios.


Very cool. I'm hoping to have the characters in my Wrath of the Righteous campaign be able to participate in battles in this fashion, and, while I'm currently working with the troop subtype, I'm always on the lookout for fun mechanics to represent this concept. :)

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