02 Jul 20

General’s Handbook: Matched Play

A new season of matched play dawns with the latest General’s Handbook! This year’s essential annual for gamers promises your most balanced and competitive battles yet, from tweaked pitched battle profiles to new missions, realm rules and more. Today, we’re looking at some headline changes to help you prepare…

New Points!

As with all of the previous General’s Handbooks, the 2020 edition includes a set of pitched battle profiles – key data on how many points your units cost, their unit sizes and so on. They’ve been carefully balanced and tweaked by our team in line with playtester feedback, tournament results and internal testing. 

Make sure to check these out in detail – some favourites may now take up a bigger slot in your list, while other options have gone down in points (looking at you, Great Unclean Ones!) and they may be just the thing for your next tournament winning list.

Like in last year’s edition, we’ll be ensuring that armies released after the General’s Handbook went to print (that’s everything since Cities of Sigmar) will have their matched play profiles updated for free with a set of downloads in the very near future. 

Win Your Way

Warhammer Age of Sigmar offers matched play gamers a vast diversity of play styles and army builds, from defensively oriented gunlines to ultra-elite monster-mashes, and covens of magic-slinging sorcerers. Auxiliary Objectives are a new set of secondary goals that YOU choose before battle. Secure more of them than your opponent, and any draw will be changed to a minor victory for you!

Let’s say your army is super fast – the Invader objective is ideal for you.

Prefer surgical aggression? Marked For Death rewards you for slaying an enemy unit. 

Knowing the battleplans will still be key to victory in the Mortal Realms, but now you’ll have the chance to tailor your objectives to your favourite strategy!

New Realm Rules

One of the most exciting changes in the latest edition of Warhammer Age of Sigmar was the Realm of Battle rules for each of the Mortal Realms, which provided players with a vast suite of in-game effects and artefacts. In the latest General’s Handbook, these rules have been streamlined for ease of use and distinctiveness, and balanced for matched play, ensuring that each realm has its own flavour while minimising the time you’ll spend flicking through various rulebooks and rolling on random tables. 

Battles in Ulgu, for instance, are tense and unpredictable. Wizards gain access to a truly nasty spell, Overgrown terrain everywhere severely curtails shooting, and commanders are able to quickly pull units out of combat with a tricksy command ability.

The realm artefacts from Malign Sorcery have also been replaced with a smaller, tighter list. You’ll still be able to choose thematic, realm-specific options, but now you’ll also be encouraged to branch out and look at your own army’s artefact lists rather than always having to compare them to an Aetherquartz Brooch!

New Meeting Engagements!

What’s more, the General’s Handbook includes updates for Meeting Engagement, Warhammer Age of Sigmar’s dedicated 1,000 point ruleset. If you’ve not tried Meeting Engagement yet, you’re missing out. This fast-paced mode of play turns traditional strategy on its head, challenges you in every phase of the game and only requires half the models to paint and play! With more battleplans to try, and rules for team games of Meeting Engagement using the Coalition of Death rules, this promises to be a great way to spice up your usual battles. 

And More!

You’ll have to get your own copy of the General’s Handbook 2020 to see all of the changes to matched play for yourself! We’re not done with previews yet, however – check back tomorrow for a look at the new hero creation system!