Hello everyone !!
Welcome to the review of Malign Sorcery, the Extension for AOS 2.0 about sorcery, spells and relics !
Malign Sorcery let you launch spell so big that they need models ! These new effects are called Endless Spell. As the name suggest they are spells that stay on the field until dispelled by either side. That's the trick, Endless Spell can be dispelled or moved by both players, meaning the you can cast a big spell and see it coming back into your line on the next turn and be forced to dispel it. Loads of fun expected !
The Malign Sorcery box is composed of 13 models (the endless spell) , 1 rulebook, 14 warscrolls cards.
Malign sorcery include matched play profile so it's considered an official addition to the Meta. With the release of Souls War and the Second edition of AOS it's difficult to foresee how these spells are going to fit it. But we can consider that with the nerf to Bolt and Shield, there is room for new forms of magic ;)
This set is a different take on magic in miniatures games and it's really interesting, the idea to use physical models available to every army is great. One of the big problems for a lot of allegiance (usually old one) is generating mortal wounds. With the nerf to Arcane Bolt (from 1d3 to 1 Mortal Wound unless 10+ on casting) Offensive Endless Spells are a necessity for some armies. Another difficulty if you play with a limited range of models in your faction is that sometime list building is repetitive. Lastly in some case your army just don't have specific answer to the meta.
This is why I really like this expansion, every faction can take Endless spell or Realm items. While I am sure some new armies have enough spells or relics already. Limited faction without a dedicated Battletome (like brayherds) are going to use them intensively.
Maybe you can see it as an old codex tax (point wise and money wise ^^) but the box is only 65€ and most of the spells are 40 to 60 pts. It also add to list building options. For the last 200 pts, do I want a Battalion ? Command points ? Endless spells ? So many choice for everyone.
To me the real gems are the Endless support spells !! The prismatic wall, the Chronomatic Cogs and The Balewind Vortex are all superb options ! Sure they are not as flashy as a Purple Sun but they really help any armies. Maybe the Cog is too strong for his points and the portals have too many scary interactions but it's going to be fun to test this !!
The book is divided in 2 parts, one about Endless spells (Fluff & Rules) The second is about Rules of the Realms (more Relics and Spells)
So yea Malign sorcery is about Endless Spells but there is a lot of good fluff about magic.
10 pages of the book are dedicated to the Magic in the Mortal Realms. A lot of ground is covered here. You learn about all magic colors/types, different methods to see the magic flow, There is a double page on the Learning of magic for each Grand Alliance, another one on the different Realmstones and their Properties. 2 more on the source of Magic. The end of the chapter cover the Necroquake and it's consequences. Tales about Spell Bounty Hunters are also mentioned (it's a super idea for an AOS RPG !!)
After the general background the book go into the details of each spell, how it came to exist, where
it manifested, some tragic or great stories. What happen when you dispell one or summon another.
It's all very interesting and while biggest spells have bigger screen time ^^ each one of them have some backstory and a nice illustration.
Some exemple :
The non rules section of the Malign Sorcery Book end with pics showing Endless Spells on the battlefield and a few painting tutorials.
The second part of the book is about rules and there are a lot !!
Before going into the details of each spells the book have 2 pages on general guidelines for Endless spells. I think it's important that every player leanr these rules as they are super important to know, understand and grasp. If you don't integrate these in your game play you are getting rekt !! I hope the core booklet get updated with Endless Spells rules.
Small summary of the rules :
-If you have Endless Spells on your list, each wizard know each one of them.
-One wizard can cast One Endless Spells per turn
-You need an Endless Spell model to cast it
-You can have more than one Endless Spells on the battlefield
-You can have multiple time the same Endless Spells on the battlefield
-In matched play you need to pay points for each Endless Spells model you want.
-In your hero phase (at the start) you can dispel an Endless Spell within 30' but count as casting a spell
for the wizard.
-Predatory Endless spells are moved at the start of each battle-round. Each spell is moved once, the
second player of the round start.
New Battleplan : If both player have Endless Spells in their army, roll a dice on a 6+ you must play
one of the 2 new battleplans included.
The rules for each spell are not inside the book but on 14 fancy Warscrolls cards !!
It's a great idea by GW as you can easily transport just the spells you need. (too bad you still need the general
Endless Spells rules !
Sadly all the spells were not created equals and I think a balance pass on points is going to be needed on predatory
spells ^^ When you look at an Endless Spell 4 parameters are important : Difficulty, Spawn distance, Move speed,
dmg. Some spells are clearly over/under the power curve !!
Burning head 40pts : Diff 7, spawn within 3, move 9”, deal D3
Geminids of Uhl-Gysh 40pts : Diff 7, spawn within 18, move 8”, deal 2D3 + debuff !
Ravenak jaws 40pts : Diff 6, spawn within 6, move 12”, deal 1D3 + debuff !
What do you think of the Burning Head ?
Non damage spells are all awesome cogs and pallisade are my favorite but spamming Soulsnare Shacles could be cool
too, For 60 pts I could get 3 sets (9 models ^^) and forcing the opponents to dispel them at the start of their Hero phase.
Could be a good tactics for defensive ranged list !
Endless spells are not the only addition of the Malign Sorcery. Spells of the Realm and Relics of the realms have been vastly improved ! In the core rulebook the Rules of the Realm allow you to select a realm as battlefield giving a few extra rules, one spell, one or two command abilities. Malign Sorcery add 6 more spells available to each wizard fighting on a specific Realm.
-If you are fighting a battle using the realm of battle rules. Then once you have decided on realm, each wizard know 7 extra
spells 1 from the core Rulebook and 6 from Malign sorcery.
-Also depending on the Realms Endless Spell are Empowered.
-Lastly, don't forget wizards also know any Endless Spells you have.
That's a nice Spell book with lot of options !
I included 2 spells list to give you an idea (fire realm weapon buff is completely OP ^^)
Another big part of the book is “Relic of the realm”. When you create your army you can decide the army come from a
specific realm. That opens access to 2 list of 6 items per realm (so 12 *6 totals) One for the weapons and one for relics.
with 36 weapons options you are sure to find some interesting choice. Just take a look a this exemple :
Feel like you have access to a magic item bazzaar from DnD ^^ Bunch of options from flying wings to shooting helm !!
Exemple fpr Ghyran Weapons & Relics.
Malign Sorcery is a must have at least for the Endless spells ! i hope the Rules of the Realm are going to be adopted in matched play to use all the spells options !! Maybe Ghur will not be used as you need to plan extra models but the other one are really easy to include !
Loved this boxed set !!