Playing Oathmark - this ain't no joke!
This entry was posted on April 1, 2020.
Ok, I know today's post is dated April 1st, but bear with me. This is no joke! I was fortunate enough to get an advanced copy for review, so we gave Oathmark a try...
My friend James is currently isolating with me. Two weeks ago, he had a cold and his parents are in the at-risk group, so as a precaution I said he could stay with me until he got better. Now, of course, we're in lockdown and he's stuck here! Thankfully, we planned to play Oathmark, so he brought two armies, Orcs and Templars (humans).
The game is straightforward to play and is D10 based. There are some things which seem counterintuitive at first, such as limiting the amount of dice you roll in close combat to five, but this makes sense to me. By limiting the dice, you're avoiding rolling too many - which become more predictable.
The game is initiative based, with players taking it in turns to activate one unit. Usually, two dice are rolled, with a score equal to or above their 'Activation' stat to pass. Successful units make two moves and failed units get one move. Manoeuvres are cleverly done, so an activation means a unit can either move (straight forward) or wheel/turn, but not both.
Combat is very clever, ok you have a few modifiers to learn, but it boils down to the attacker rolling over the armour value of the defender to score a casualty. If the roll is five or higher than is needed, two casualties are struck. It is really simple and quick.
Morale is taken by any side who takes casualties. Units are not automatically destroyed but become disordered first. Once disordered, a unit only rolls one dice for activation and is in danger of being destroyed if it fails another morale test.
We've played two games now and they have both been great fun. There is a slight learning curve, but we're getting the hang of it. Given that you can use whatever models you wish, I can see a lot of old armies being reused for Oathmark and several new ones purchased. Give it a go, it'll revitalise your fantasy gaming. My only regret? I have to give up my copy to my reviewer!