The Decade in Retrospect Part V, The Ongoing Saga

By Moraturi

The restrospective picks up in 2011, with innovation being king and featuring the firstl limited release of a set by the DDM Guild themselves (Feymire).

By this time, Kevin Tatroe had retreated from Guild life, called away to work on the secret project that would become Dungeon Command, providing another miniatures product. (in fact, the early product was secretly shown to many guild members at GenCon in 2011, before being demo'd to the public at GenCon 2012.

2011

Product Releases for 2011

February 15th
Wrath of Ashardalon boxed set was released

February 27th
The DDM guild released the final version of cards for the Heroscape wave 13 set.

June 21st
Conquest of Nerath was released. The Conquest of Nerath board game was not directly tied to the DnD miniatures line, but some of the pieces used in the game were later given statistics by the DDM Guild for use in the RE DDM game. The Conquest of Nerath can be played with between 2-4 players.

August 27th
The DDM Guild released the card set for Feymire.

October 18th
Legend of Drizz’t Boxed Set was released.

November 4th
Dragon Collector's Set was released

GenCon 2011

The eighth World Championship was open to anyone who wanted to participate. Around 30 players participated in a single bracket. For the 2011 Championships, there was a maximum activation limit of 8 and rotating maps through the first 6 rounds. Players were told in advance to prepare on the maps: Broken Demongate, Caves of Chaos, Dwarven Outpost, Frostfell Rift, Jungle Temple, Market Square and Teleport Temple (which ultimately was not used). The finals were played on two Dwarven Halls maps aligned next to each other (doubled Dwarven Halls). Rounds 1 and 6 used the basic Assault format, rounds 2 and 5 used the Bounty format (in which creatures are worth more victory points), and rounds 3 and 4 used the Hand of Fate format (in which attack rolls of 19-20 were critical hits, but instead of double damage added +10 damage).

First place was a warband by Matthew Noble in the Civilization faction and included a Yuan-ti Halfblood Sorcerer, Ogre Mage, Oni x2, Merchant Guard x3, and a Kobold Monk.

Personally, I played a warband similar to my previous year which included the Large Deep Dragon, Yochlol Tempter, Soulknife Infiltrator, Drow Enforcer, Delver Sergeant, and Drow Assassin x2.

The Legend of Drizz’t Boxed Set was previewed at this GenCon and was used in some events by Wizards of the Coast, but was not used in any events by the DDM Guild.

The DDM Guild continued to introduce new formats for play at this GenCon. For example, the Guild sponsored specific themed events like Goblins versus Orcs (at 121 points), a 100 point event, 2 figure format called Gladiator, and 50 point play).

The Metagame for 2011

The metagame for 2011 remained largely unchanged in the 200 point assault format, even with the release of Lords of Madness although a few creatures would potentially impact the environment (like, for example, the Shadar-kai Witch). The Lords of Madness set had a greater impact in 500 point play, given the huge creatures which were in the set.

2012

Product Releases for 2012

July 17th
The Heart of Cormyr and Sting of Lolth Dungeon Command sets were released. Each of these boxed sets came with 12 miniatures, four double-sided interlocking tiles, a deck of figure cards, a deck of action cards, and a set of figure cards suitable for use with the boxed board games (Ravenloft, Ashardalon and Drizz’t) and assorted miscellaneous cardboard tokens for use in playing the Dungeon Command game.
Most of the figures from these first two games were resculpts of previously released miniatures, although a few were new figures. Most of the resculpts also had a different paint scheme than the original releases.

September 18th
Tyranny of Goblins was released
This boxed set came with 12 miniatures, four double-sided interlocking tiles, a deck of figure cards, a deck of action cards, and a set of figure cards suitable for use with the boxed board games (Ravenloft, Ashardalon and Drizz’t) and assorted miscellaneous cardboard tokens for use in playing the Dungeon Command game.
Most of the figures from the Goblins set were resculpts of previously released miniatures, although a few were new figures. Most of the resculpts also had a different paint scheme than the original releases.

November 20th
Curse of Undeath was released
This boxed set came with 12 miniatures, four double-sided interlocking tiles, a deck of figure cards, a deck of action cards, and a set of figure cards suitable for use with the boxed board games (Ravenloft, Ashardalon and Drizz’t) and assorted miscellaneous cardboard tokens for use in playing the Dungeon Command game.
Most of the figures from the Undeath set were resculpts of previously released miniatures, although a few were new figures. Most of the resculpts also had a different paint scheme than the original releases.

GenCon 2012

The ninth Gen Con Championship (the World Championship designation went to the European Championship, which had more players this year) was open to anyone who wanted to participate. There were no qualifiers this year. There were only 10 players who participated in a single bracket. The scheduling was done at the last minute and there were no formal DDM events listed in the GenCon program. Only three events were run informally (a sealed booster tournament, the community draft event and the 200 point assault format).

The 200 point assault format was played on small maps and had an 8 figure limit. The first place warband by Brad Shugg (bshugg) was in the Civilization faction and included three Human Fighter Lords, three Merchant Guards, and multiple Cursed Lodestones.

Personally, I again played a variation of my previous year's themes including the Large Deep Dragon, Yochlol Tempter, Shadar-Kai Stalker with a Cursed Lodestone, Drow Enforcer, Delver Sergeant, Drow Assassin, and Twig Blight x2

The Tyranny of Goblins Dungeon Command set was previewed prior to its commercial release.

The Metagame for 2012

After the very strong showing for the Human Fighter Lord, it was revised shortly after the 2012 GenCon.
Given the small number of participants from the 2012 GenCon and the overall drop in the number of players in various regions, it is difficult to meaningfully assess whether the metagame changed in this year, compared to previous years.

2013

Product Releases for 2013

February 19th
Blood of Gruumsh was released

This boxed set came with 12 miniatures, four double-sided interlocking tiles, a deck of figure cards, a deck of action cards, and a set of figure cards suitable for use with the boxed board games (Ravenloft, Ashardalon and Drizz’t) and assorted miscellaneous cardboard tokens for use in playing the Dungeon Command game.

All of the figures from the Gruumsh set were new sculpts, with new stats and were releases in mixed format, with both creature stat cards and themed item stat cards by the DDM guild.

GenCon 2013?

Of course, its tough to say in advance what will be strong at GenCon, but the metagame has been changed from last year a little by the new set and a little by the influx of new items that could make previously weak units much stronger. Players may be tempted to play them. Stats released for the Curse of Undeath and Blood of Gruumsh sets, as well as for single new units from the original three Dungeon command Sets (Spear of Cormyr, Drow Web Mage and the Vanguard of Bane) may also be considered.

With no set maps, the winning warband is likely to have significant flexibility, and in particular mobility - whether intrinsic or simply relative to their opponents. We'll certainly find out soon enough. Hope to see you there! (As I return to play in my tenth GenCon championship).

/jp

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wow! what a ride it has been.

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