Fray | Champions of the Every-Verse | Preview Series #2
Beginning the Battle: Initiative and Movement
By Mark Stogdill
In the last post we discussed choosing your champions and how to deploy them at the start of the game. In this post we will discuss beginning the game using initiative, how that affects each round of play and how to move your Champions in the combat arena.
The game is structured in a series of rounds, each round with several phases. The first phase is the Initiative Phase. In this phase each player designates one of their champions to lead the round. Each player then rolls a six-sided die (D6) and adds the initiative modifier of the Champion leading the round to the roll.
The initiative modifier, which can be found on their Champion Card, is unique to each Champion and reflects whether one Champion is quicker to act then their opponent. For instance, you would expect Sheriff West, the quickest draw in Desolation Valley, to be faster to act than Baldren, the stubborn and slower moving dwarf.
The same Champion cannot be selected to lead the round two turns in a row. The player needs to consider what modifier they want to use in this round and which to use in the next. In Single Mode the Champion initiative is used every other round. For instance, in the first round each player adds the initiative modifier of their champion to their dice roll. In the next round, no Initiative Modifier is used and players simply use the result of their dice roll. In the following round the players again add their champions modifier and so on.
Champions can move up to their full movement value (adding any modifiers), moving one square at a time as they go. Champions may not move through the square or end their movement on the square of another Champion.
Movement comes into play in other ways as well. While in combat sometimes the best offense is a good defense. It may make sense for a Champion to disengage in combat, but it can leave the Champion open to attacks from the opposing players, known as Press the Advantage attacks. In that case, a Champion may use a movement icon (boot) to do a Guarded Withdraw, which allows the Champion to safely disengage and prevents the Champion from taking further attacks as a result of escaping close quarters combat. Depending on the Champion’s combat type (melee, short range, or long range) the player must strategically decide where and how to move to maximize what each Champion can do.
For instance, Brint the Ranger is deadly at long range but doesn’t want to get caught taking melee attacks from Harald the Raider. Conversely Trilug will be smelling blood and rushing at foes from across the battlefield while Erabeth will be using her abilities to escape combat unscathed after a few bites to his neck.