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A question on competitive summoning in AoS

May 25, 2016
The ability to summon additional units and bolster the size of regiments is one of the fundamental cornerstones of VC/TK gameplay. Magic continues to play its crucial role as players wage their campaigns throughout the Mortal Realms in AoS. However that is not to say that summoning, like other game mechanics, can be unfairly implemented, or otherwise misinterpreted, into an otherwise challenging game.

From what I have seen from various games at my local store there appears to be a few attitudes to utilising summoning spells.

#1 Summon Limit: Both players agree that a certain limit of Warscrolls/Wounds can be summoned at any one time in addition to the starting size of the army. At first glance this could widen the margins between the compositions of the players’ forces, however there are plenty of Warscrolls throughout the Alliances that can level the playing field. Besides there is always the risk of failed Casting Rolls, so there’s no guarantee that theses additional units will appear 100% of the time.

#2 Raise the Fallen: Additional units can only be summoned to make up for Wounds lost throughout the game. This approach does open a fresh avenue of tactical thinking to employ as the players’ armies tear into one another. Do you want to use some of your lost Wounds to bring in another unit onto the field or heal a badly mauled hero?

#3 Magic, magic everywhere!: This is the no punches held option to the debate. Players refrain from implementing any restrictions to summoning additional units so long as the spell was successfully cast. Needless to say, this could result with one player’s army overwhelming their opponent’s forces with the sheer scale of the units they have to command. However this setback can be rectified with the use of the ‘Sudden Death Table’ during the game.

As the Grand Alliance and Battletome instalments were published over the months I and fellow hobbyists have attempted to refine various rules to avoid needless hair splitting during our encounters on the tabletop. However as you can tell from nature of this thread the subject of Magic is a ripe topic of debate.

Which is why I would like to turn the question to you, what is your stance on using summoning in your games? Do you agree with any of the methods outlined above or do you have your own approach that you would like to share?
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Vampire Count
Oct 28, 2011

We used to have some ideas, like all forums and such, however the new General's Handbook will come and override all of it.

It should be released this summer, and it has ways to meassure one's army (points) and should have rules that comprehend Summoning or otherwise adding models to your army.

I'd suggest we wait until then and see how it goes, because there are not a lot of tactical discussions for AoS here right now, but I feel it's going to change once we get to a Tournament-style play and such.

Hope this helped!
May 25, 2016
Hi there Demain, thank you for your input on this issue!

I have read about the AoS General’s Handbook from a series of on-line sources and agree that it should help clear up a few rules gaps that players have been filling in since the release of the initial AoS main rules. Once it hits the shelves it could spur fresh interest playing AoS in a competitive context and get a few organised events off the ground.

In relation to my question on “fair summoning” I happened to stumble across EternallyUndying’s insightful discussion Summoning: A call to save the AoS and found it was well worth the time to thoroughly read through.