Some listeners have requested a guide to playing Warmachine and Hordes on Tabletop Simulator so here it is!!
We are in the midst of a global pandemic so most Warmachine and Hordes players across the globe have nowhere to play since games store and clubs are closed in order to maintain social distancing to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Luckily, there are online resources for players to get together and play through the internet without having to risk public meetings in the midst of this crisis. Tabletop Simulator is my choice for remote gaming of all types, including Warmachine. Here is my step-by-step beginners guide:
- Buy Tabletop simulator. It’s on Steam. It’s about $20 and frequently goes on sale. There is also a 4-pack option that you can split with some friends to make it super cheap. (Side note: There are fantastic modules on TTS for 1000’s of games so you will probably get much more out of it than just Warmachine games. I’ve recently used it for Mansions of Madness, Star Wars Legion and Riot Quest to name a few.)
2. Download some modules for Warmachine. You can go to the Workshop for TTS in Steam and search for Warmachine and a number of great modules will be found. I will highlight one user Ciaran. https://steamcommunity.com/id/ciarangj/myworkshopfiles/?appid=286160 who has been maintaining faction packs of 2D transparent standees for all the factions in WM/H. These packs are fantastic!! Subscribe to any of the mods you want and next time you load up TTS they will be there waiting for you.
You will also need a table module to play on. There is one in the list of Ciaran’s modules but I wanted one a little more streamlined so I remixed it and re-posted on Steam. You can find my remixed table here. I only made this for my personal use but I’ll share it in case anyone is interested. All credit for the scripting goes to previous authors.
3. Make your Lists! Once you have TTS and you’ve subscribed to some modules. It’s time to build some lists. In TTS start a single player session and open the module for the faction you want to build a list for. There might be better ways to do this, truly I’m also a TTS noob but I’ve figured some stuff out and I hope to save other players some aggravation.
Once you have the module open I line up all the models I want to put in my list. Either selecting and dragging them to the middle or by copying and pasting them. For solos I make a copy of each solo I want in the list. Most units in the modules have 1 leader model and 1 grunt model. For a max unit you will need to make additional copies for the grunt model according to your needs.
- When your list is all lined up select all the models and right click on one of them (I usually click the caster because it will be used for the thumbnail) and Save Object.
4. Ready to Play! You will either need to host or join a server to play a game.
- If you are joining the person who is hosting needs to give you a server name and password. Search for the server and enter the PW and you should be good to go.
- If you are hosting. Go to create – Multiplayer and make a server name and password that you will share with your opponent.
When you are on the server load up the table module you subscribed to earlier.
Go to Objects – Saved Objects from the top menu, find the object you created and drag your army onto one of the tables.
5. Actually Playing. I urge to to read through the shortcut key bindings in the options menu. There are many useful shortcuts but I will list a few of them here.
- F flips a model, card or token to the opposite side.
- R will roll any dice you currently have selected.
- L will lock a model in place.(useful because the objects in TTS use physics and mis-clicks can cause catastrophic mistakes.)
- After you put terrain on the board make sure you lock each piece or I promise you will regret it later.
- After you click to pick up a models but before you move your mouse, hold tab, and it will tell you exactly how far you are moving a model. This is crucial for precise movement. Let go of tab before you release your mouse.
- You can also measure anytime using Tab.
- You can move the camera around with WASD and rotate it with the arrow keys.
- You can also hold middle mouse button to Pan the camera and hold right button to rotate.
- If you need to get an object our of a bag you can right-click and search to find it.
- If you scale your Warjack cards up about 2x and lock them you can use the vector draw tool to make damage on the card. Cards must be locked to draw on them. (Credit to Twitch chat for that one. Lifesaver.)
- When objects are stacked, a quick click and drag will draw the first object. If you click and hold before dragging it will grab the whole stack.
There are too many other idiosyncrasies to list here so you will have to fiddle around with TTS to get the hang of it on your own.
6. What I love about playing on Tabletop Simulator. I love the visual aspect of TTS. When I describe the 2D standees in the faction modules they sound rather crude (They are basically 2D model shots from PPs gallery with the background turned transparent and sitting on a base.) but while you are playing they help create an excellent visual representation of the game as it’s played in real life and actually look fantastic. A top-down 2D perspective will undoubtedly give you a more precise experience but in my opinion leeches the enjoyment of it.
Now get out there and play some games! If you are on Discord there is a Warmachine TTS Discord here: Come find some opponents.