Saturday, 10 February 2018

Saga 2 First Game

It's time to try out the new version of Saga, with my Vikings taking on Matt's Anglo-Saxons. These are two of the simplest factions to use, perfect for a first game with a new ruleset. We skipped terrain setup and just launched straight in, not being particularly competitive types.

The game looks and feels and plays very like the previous version. Changes have been made to streamline gameplay, there's less fiddly measurement involved and far more action. I would describe the changes made as subtle, none game changing on their own, but they all add up to a slightly different game.

The first change of note is generating Saga dice. All units now generate one Saga dice, though warriors and levy cease to do so once they fall below a certain size. No more single warriors hiding in woods generating dice! You can also leave Saga dice on your battle board and not affect the number of dice thrown, useful for building up a cunning plan.

Movement has been tidied up, again not in a major way for casual players. Units can activate for free if they are more than L from enemy units, which allows stranded units to get back into the thick of the action without spending Saga dice. There's greater explanation on how to charge units.

Melee has been tweaked a little, again not by much. There is a clear step by step guide on how to execute combat, generating combat dice, using abilities and fatigue, withdrawals and such like. Defenders get the chance to close ranks, losing half their attack dice to benefit from a better chance to cancel hits. Again, it's not a major change and you will find melee tends to play out as before. This lone viking would have struggled in the previous version as he did in the new game!

Probably the most significant change is the way Warlords operate. They still gain a free activation, and can gift a nearby unit with one. They now generate eight dice in combat, but must fight alone, there's no more With Me rule. When he takes wounds he can spend fatigue to ignore it, or pass it on to nearby hearthguard. If you keep your Warlord and his bodyguard close by you will not notice a huge difference to how it pans out.

The fatigue system has probably changed the most. All units now take three fatigue before they are exhausted. You can spend enemy fatigue in the same way as the previous version, but there's also the opportunity to spend two fatigue to cancel an activation.

I think that's the bulk of the most noticeable rule changes. We got along fine given our previous experience. The game was more action packed as it's easier to keep units in the thick of things. I found it a little smoother, no more fiddling with VS measurements in combat which was always a bit laborious. It's too soon to say how the factions have fared after just one game, but those Anglo Saxons sure seem to have picked up a few melee moves, my vikings were slaughtered. They are keen to exact revenge, maybe for the next game I will switch things around a little, teach those Saxon dogs a lesson!

2 comments:

MichaƂ Kucharski said...

Thank You so much for a game-review :) I;m still waiting to buy new edition rulebooks :)

Hot Dice Miniatures said...

I don't play saga (yet), but I enjoyed learning about the major differences here. Nice Figures!

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