Can you build units from scratch using points

Hi Folks,

I am considering using KOW for my role playing game but want a more Tolkien feel to the orcs. Is there a program or chart with a points value that I could build units completely from scratch??


Theoretically, maybe. Practically it would likely open up all kinds of abuse.

KoW Armies seem to follow a certain theme that has nothing to do with point costs. Elves for example are costly Elite troops. Goblins on the other hand are cheap and can easily field multiple hordes.

Even keeping the point cost, imagine you could just invent new units or even mix and match units from different armies … Spitter Hordes for unlocks with Dwarven Artillery, Elven Drakons and Dragons, giving key units stealthy, because yeah why not or something along those lines? It would turn the game away from strategy and tactics and put a major emphasis on unit/army building and “powergaming” in general.

I.e. if you do something like that … you might end up “gaming the system” more than “playing the game” … or if you do not, then it won’t take long until you meet an opponent that does and wipes the floor with you with some combo that you can only counter when you engage in the similar shennigans.

Building a “thematic Orc List” ala Tolkien however is something entirely different and could certainly be cool, if the focus is to make a force with strenghts and weaknesses that is more or less balanced against the other armies. Just be aware of the potential pitfalls above.

Maybe Working off Orcs and Goblins and taking allies and writing different fluff/using different models for certain units, would be an option to make something like that possible without bending the rules as well?


In addition to what Mikes said, maybe you can go through the different armies and find the army that you find more fitting for your vision and slap the name orcs on them instead of whatever they are and use that.

Question: how are you using KoW for your roleplaying game?
I’m not sure how a mass battle game fits that?

Or us your post actually about the Kings of War RPG?

Well, maybe he uses stats from units on single model. Like single dwarf ranger has stats from KoW dwarf rangers. He doesn`t even need anything to fix, only try to keep every model within stats of regiments, so no hordes or troops stats. I think it could be funny to roll 15 dice with one model.

But if I remember correctly, one of CoKs had chapter about making your own units from scratch. It is no rocket science, mostly guess work really.

there is a points system but Mantic and the RC have never revealed it because it is a sliding scale dependent on army points for abilities and stats change, nothing exists within a bubble.

Using KoW as a setting for an rpg great plan, using KoW stats, not so much. Because you’ll find the points and stats change depending on unit size. You can’t just divide a troop by 10 for example and get a statline and value.

If you can’t wait for the KoW RPG that is coming out, check out KoW: Vanguard where you are starting with individuals, it will make it much easier to try and get stats and points.

Onto the “orcs more like Tolkein’s” - not sure what they’re like it’s been years since I read the Hobbit/LoTR. Do you want to make them less fighty and more shooty? They were elves after all. As a GM I would say tweak away, but don’t feel constrained by points. Except in terrible RPGs like D&D were it’s all about leveling up I don’t think I’ve ever looked at balancing an encounter for my players.

Chuck whatever you want against them and you can always find reasons for them to win if it’s too over powering for them, then you can change the amounts for the next time they run into something

If I had my players leading a massive battle, I might consider using modified KoW rules. Give them all a small force to lead as part of one side versus me the DM running the other side.

But it’s a pretty niche thing that I wouldn’t do more than once to be fair as it’s not how I run rpg stories.

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Thanks for all your robust and timely answers. You never quite know what you get when joining a new forum. I am quite impressed!

As far as role-playing with the system I enjoy miniature war-gaming quite a bit as well. It would be fun to have the players form armies at times to face a menace etc or even resolve a situation they are not particularly involved with that was part of the current events. Whipping up some generic brigand units or Dwarfs etc (as I see they should be in my world) would be fun and a point system for building them would make it easier. I would be refereeing the affair so it would not be competitive and more of a convention style game.

I have played one Game of Kings Of War game and really liked how they stream lined things for mass battle. Look forward to playing it again.


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I had a campaign where the party through an oracle learned that a demon was coming to overrun an island one of them had inherited (story was a little more complex). As they wandered the world doing favors for people, these people wold promise them support so in the end the climatic battle was between the hodge, podge forces of good and the demonic hoard. Worked out very well and ended the campaign nicely and was pretty exciting to boot.

I had something just like that planned out for a campaign that fell apart due to work. My current players aren’t that big on large military conflicts unfortunately.

Hope you’ll let us know how it goes if you set something up :slight_smile:

If you are thinking you’d like to you might look at Vanguard instead - their skirmish system. The games last about an hour with warbands of up to a dozen models. If its a straight Tolkien RPG you want there are likely better options

Unfortunately there is no unit builder system where points can be calculated.

Battletech is the only TT game I’ve played that has a comprehensive points based unit building system. It is wonderful to have but potentially deadly in the wrong hands. It comes in its own book called the “Techmanual” and runs to 400 pages.

There’s a lot of the old Grenadier undead masterworks I’d like to get so a KoW unit builder to point these models up would be great. Is it worth the time and stress for Mantic - probably not.

Within days you’d have players pulling the system apart. Others creating monster units. Stress with no real benefit to the company.

That was broken as f… still fun though :grin:

BV.2 is great for balancing games, creating units, running campaigns, designing everything from VTOLs though to massive mobile platforms.

I did take years to get good though. An evolution over decades.

A unit builder in the hands of a player that wants to break the game is dangerous though.

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