Mantic Games Make Waves On Pannithor With Armada

September 16, 2020 by avernos

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Mantic Games have announced a new game coming to retail in November, Armada. Based on Pannithor, the setting for their fantasy games, Armada will allow people to take to the waves in a game of epic naval battles. A starter set is coming to start people off with starting fleets for two of the races from Kings of War, the Basileans and the Orcs.

Armada 2 player set mockup

Armada // Mantic Games

This one has come a little out of left field with Mantic keeping it under wraps until hints started to appear in the Primovantor Pilgrim, a news sheet that appears on their page on occasion with informative news stories like the outrageous taxation of turnips that haven't been blessed by the Hegemony,  It's generally filled with easter eggs if people can find them about upcoming plans and recently some ships have appeared in them for fleets beyond the starter set. In a press release for the game Ronnie had this to say

 “A fantasy naval game has been one of the number one requests from the Kings of War community over recent years,” said Mantic Games, CEO, Ronnie Renton. “The fact that we can release straight to retail with such a comprehensive range demonstrates the continued strength and growth of Kings of War.”

It certainly expands the world with dungeon crawler, warband skirmish, and massed battle games already on the market the venture into naval warfare makes a lot of sense for Mantic and Kings of War. The evolving nature of Pannithor as a world through the campaigns Mantic runs gives scope for large linked campaigns for players to get involved in and effect. With the map expanding in 3rd edition to show a much greater place to explore now the ability to do it via nations navies means Mantic can introduce new fleets and races if they wish down the line. I do like combined ongoing campaigns in games and another string to the bow with Armada is a great thing.


Armada 2 Player Starter Set // Mantic Games

Armada Game Play

The game is based on Warlord Games Black Seas, Armada takes historical battles and gives them an epic fantasy twist. I'm already a fan of Black Seas and you can see some Let's Plays if you want an idea of how the game plays out. Players command a fleet of six to nine ships to capture terrifying sea monsters, unleash devastating broadsides against their opponent, upgrade their ships with arcane magic and execute daring boarding actions.

How magic and sea monsters work within the rules will be the main focus for me when I get my hands on the game. There are already layers of rules within the Black Seas system depending on how detailed you want it to be so adding magic and monsters to it won't be an issue as far as the game mechanics go, but in the past some fantasy naval games these things could become very unbalanced. Given how Mantic's games keep focus on balance I can't imagine they will allow it to be game-breaking but it will be worth watching out for.


Armada Basileans // Mantic Games


From the initial launch, players can take to the seas of Pannithor as one of four exciting factions – starting with the brave Basileans and marauding orcs, then following shortly after with the stoic dwarfs and wicked Empire of Dust. The fleets for Armada are all resin miniatures and as you can see from the photos they are up to Mantic's fantastic quality. Every resin piece I've got my hands on has been crisply detailed and beautifully cast so they should be a dream to get on the tabletop and best of all, No Rigging! I for one am thankful for not having to spin string around the masts and jibs and whatever other boat things they have. Also check out that spinning Orc Marauder windmill double brass fist, I don't want that coming up on me!


Armada Orcs // Mantic Games

Overall I'm excited to see this next step for Mantic, working with Warlord to get a system that works beautifully and adapting it for Fantasy is a stroke of genius, especially if you already know the rules you're not having to learn another naval game. It will be interesting to see the uptake in the community for this and where the game goes in the future. The make or break for me will be the Dwarven and Empire of Dust fleets, the teasers we've seen are steam-powered ironclad for the short fellows and I imagine the undead are magical to an extent. Having sailing ships be at the mercy of fleets that aren't behoving to the power of the wind was a major flaw with that other fantasy fleet game, but I have fair in Mantic to not fall into that trap.

The game will be available from Mantic Games and your FLGS from November and more information will be coming over the coming weeks which you can follow on the Mantic blog

Mantica O'War, there I've done it, happy now?

"No Rigging! I for one am thankful for not having to spin string around the masts and jibs and whatever other boat things they have. "

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