Hi everyone, welcome to another Tales From Alamut!
With the Kickstarter campaign for Inferno up and running, some questions have been asked about the factions play styles. I’m here to try and give some insight to help people choose a faction that works for them.
The European invaders have faith in two things; God and guns. Of all the factions in Hell Dorado, the Westerners are the least melee oriented, working better with an emphasis on the various ranged units available, while using melee focused units and support units in a secondary role. That is not to say Westerners can’t fight, as a Westerner company has access to some fine melee combatants that, with some support from officers and Independents, can be very effective fighters. However melee is not the factions strong suit. The Westerners excel at killing their enemies at range. Arquebusers and Aiden St James can form a potent gun line, while Swashbucklers with their pistols are very capable marksmen also. If blowing stuff up is more your style, Grenadiers and Sara Zingaresce can cause a lot of explosions, and with the imminent release of the Flammenwerfer, pyromaniacs will be in heaven.
The first arrivals in Hell from Earth, the Saracens are on a quest set forth by the Old Man of the Mountain to find Heaven. Combat-wise, the Saracens are much more balanced than the Westerners. They have less access to gunpowder weapons, but they still favor a combined arms approach with a heavier focus on melee fighting. While the units can be quite fragile individually, the Saracens strength lies in their support units, both in officer and independent form, boosting the faction’s survivability dramatically, either by making allies harder to hit, providing healing, or mitigating wounded states. Another defining faction trait are the Djinn; the four character independents and one trooper profile tend to be more ‘niche’ in their play-style, but bring something invaluable to the faction: speed. A company with Lancers and Dibbukim and a couple of Genies can be frighteningly good at playing for the objectives of the scenario.
The Demons are defined by two ‘D’s’; Denial and Damage. Unique among the factions, Demons excel at messing with their opponent’s game plan, either by outright denying some abilities, or causing damage when abilities are used. They are a faction wholly focused on melee, and boy do they do it well. They have access to arguably two of the best melee oriented units in the game; the Greater Damned One of Wrath and the Greater Damned One of Pride. They are a faction of three parts; Demons, Damned, and Fallen Angels. The Angels have an affinity for healing, something that helps offset the general lack of protection in the faction, the Demonic units bring the debuffs and denial effects, while the Damned Ones bear the brunt of the fight.
Hell’s original inhabitants, the Lost are fighting for a homeland to call their own. They are loaded with some powerful monsters, but with the presence of more subtle troops and independents to catch your opponent off guard. Much like the Saracens, they work best with a combined arms approach, with very good shooting capabilities and fantastic melee skills, however they are atypical in Hell Dorado as the faction’s strength lies with their trooper units, rather than with their independents. Unit’s like Retiarius and Squamata Warriors can go toe to toe with the best the enemy can throw at you. The Lost have an affinity with the battlefields of Hell, being able to move around much more easily than most of the other factions, giving them a big advantage with careful placement of terrain.
Light and Dark, the two halves of the soul and the way to enlightenment. This is the way of the Immortals. This is represented by their dual-command mechanic; a light/dark split that allows the Immortal player to trigger different abilities depending on whichever command color you have more of. The Immortals themselves are an elite faction, individually very strong with an emphasis on melee combined with some debuff abilities. They are also fine scenario players, being quick and maneuverable. Because of these capacities the company is usually smaller as a result. To get the most out of their game-play, managing the light and dark command is imperative so you have the optimal ability active at the right time.
The home of all the scoundrels that fight for selfish purposes, be it coin or some deeper purpose known only to themselves. The Templars are present in Hell, lending their services to those that can further their secret agenda. The Mercs are a company of individuals, not relying on synergies with their fellows so much as making the best use of their individual skills. They can be anything the player wants, melee focused, shooting, combined arms, a force that ambushes their foes before they know what hit them. Because they are individuals, they do lack some of the more straightforward elements present in the other faction, but when played well……
I hope this article gives some insight into the different factions for people looking to start Hell Dorado, keep watching the Kickstarter campaign to see what else Cipher has in store!
Thanks very much for reading.