I thought of a way to improve the Beastmen Campaign that people seemed to really like and someone suggested I post it in this section.
in the lore, Beastmen congregate around great standing stones called herdstones. Herdstones are Beastmen alters for the Chaos gods. Here they lay banners, swords, shields and other offerings at the alter to gain the favour of one of their gods. They also use these areas to Summon other Beastmen Warbands to their location and it is at these locations that the Beastmen hold their Most important Festivals and celebrations.
in Total War Warhammer: Headstones could be the equivalent for Beastmen settlements. however, simply having the Beastmen occupy ruined settlements as the Skaven do, would be to similar and not really conducive with the lore or their playstyle (as a Nomadic faction). In the lore: Herdstones are erected within caves or in the deepest darkest parts of forests; places that are very concealed and that humans can't usually reach, let alone find.
Instead: (Similar to the Oak of ages) these Herdstones could be a structure all to themselves, hidden within various regions scattered across the map (ideally on forest tiles or stuck in mountainsides; indicating that they are hidden in a cave) And like the Oak of ages, they could be just be a settlement building with a garrison, focused on more passive buffs than constructing buildings.
Herdstone List of Functions and Effects (because its less messy than explaining it):
- Invisible to all factions other than Beastmen (how to find them will be covered soon)
- a certain number of them Spawn on the map in semi-random locations on turn 1. (this is so the players can’t figure out where they’re going to be. Though its random, there will always be x number in the Empire, x number in Naggaroth and so on).
- Herdstones act as universal safe havens for all Beastmen factions and take on a more passive role than a traditional settlements. (they could work almost exactly like The Oak of Ages the Wood Elves have). they would have garrisons that get bigger as you upgrade the main building. They also give Beastmen factions Visibility over the Province they reside in.
I don’t think Beastmen should be allowed to construct Herdstones of their own (however, if one is destroyed, they should be able to rebuild it or construct a new one somewhere else).
- “each arriving chieftain scratches his name or mark onto the central stone in the crude Beastmen version of the Dark Tongue, known simply as the Beast Tongue, and his warband sets up camp”
Even though they would be Universal safe havens: having all of them as the player from turn 1 would be OP, so you must venture out to all of them and ‘activate’ them by etching your name into the Central stone, making it yours and granting you its buffs.
- Traveling to a region with Herdstone gives Beastmen tribes bonuses to recruit rank and recruitment time, casualty replenishment, Horde Growth, Leadership and ambush success chance in local regions and allow you to summon and recruit other Beastmen Legendary lords. (even ‘dead’ ones).
- Passive Bonuses from Herdstones, regardless of where you are, could include: reduced unit Upkeep, increased lord and hero recruit rank, Increased spread of chaos corruption by your army, increased diplomatic relations with other Chaos, Norsca and Beastmen factions.
- Old world factions lack the Rites that were introduced in Warhammer 2. If we are going to give the Beastmen rites: this is how we do it. Make them travel to one of the Herdstones to call one of their Festivals (these rites could range from increasing your army cap, to spawning another Beastmen army on the map like what the Lizardmen can do)
Herdstones and the Possible rites/festivals that come with them could also be linked to future implementation of the multiple Chaos gods, if they come in game 3, allowing Beastmen to pledge themselves to and earn the favour of one of the Chaos gods. this could result in getting new units, lords, heroes etc.
- They could also act as respawn points for the AI Beastmen tribes. (to avoid giving away the location, they should spawn in the general area)
- “all manner of offerings are left there to appease and earn the favour of the Gods; weapons, armour, the Banners of vanquished foes and the corpses of mutilated enemies can all be found piled around the base of these stones”
Playing as another faction: finding Herdstones and destroying them would be a way to stop Beastmen re-spawning in that region and doing so could reward you with a powerful banner or magical item that you found at the altar (you would have to fight the garrison to destroy it).
How could other factions Find them?
Slightly rework how Heroes find pirate Coves and under cities. Rather than having it be an order to investigate a city, make it an ability they can activate while standing in the province (like cleanse corruption Hero abilities from WH1). Perhaps also make it so that, instead of finding them right away, it takes a few turns, or they have a certain Percentage each turn to find one.
This way, the investigation mechanic could work for Pirate coves, Under cities and Herdstones.
The idea behind these Herdstones and having them function as described: is to give the Beastmen a greater foothold on the map, without putting them in harm's way or hampering their fast, nomadic playstyle, by making them fight over settlements like everyone else.
Giving them these hidden sanctuaries where they can heal, respawn and gain buffs would make them a more dangerous, consistent and elusive threat. Furthermore: having them already exist and scattered around the map to be claimed would give the Beastmen a great incentive to explore the whole map and give their campaign a higher ceiling of potential to be unlocked at the players own pace, depending on their ability and desire to seek out as many of them as they can, as fast as they can.