Perhaps the worst problem with Warhammer is the over powering nature of the magic items. It is a terrible mechanic when a single magic item can completely change the outcome of a game. If not restricted some magic items are so abusive that any person playing them should never be able to find an opponent. Well, Games Workshop seems incapable of figuring out which are broken so here is a little primer on which items are cheater or what to expect in a white dwarf battle report.
- War Crown of Sapery/Book of Nagash - Look at me I am level 5 and you aren’t. A bit unfair to the other magiks, but why is the high magic cheater one more expensive then necromancy cheater item?
- The Tress of Isoulde - This might be fine by itself but as it allows other weapons to work with it like Blade of Leaping Bronze, Sword of Swift Slaying, or the Hydra Sword, this allows cheater combinations particularly with the Bretonian virtues. Even at one use you can build up a brute of a hero which can kill almost anything out there.
- Golden Crown of Atrazar - This is simply an item that is too inexpensive. Armor of Endurance gives a 6+ save for 5pts, armor of Fortune gives a 5+ save for 15pts Armor of Protection gives a 4+ save for 50pts and the crown gives a 3+ save for 50pts! Shouldn’t the next number in the series be closer to 150pts? Oh I understand the crown can exhaust after it saves your butt.
- Banner of Righteous Retribution - An item that rebounds missile shots is kinda cool but to have these rebounded missiles have greater range than then they could be shot and to auto hit is a bit much. Exhaustion is a poor counter for the steam tank wrecked by this item.
- Staff of Damnation - You can cast Van Hales for all your units. This is a time saver but a also way too powerful when your troops are in combat.
- Axe of Khorne / Master Rune of Death - Auto kill should send up the auto broken flags in the game designers.
- Hydra Sword — Before the fix in White dwarf this item allowed a hero to score an average of 6 wounds on an enemy unit. This said you win combat, why use it on heroes. Even the fix where each hit does d6 wounds to a model makes this too powerful.
- The Carstien Ring — As if killing a vampire once was not hard enough.
- Master Rune of Gromril — Oh yeah toughness 10 can only be hit by strength 7 of higher, why not just say character becomes invincible.
- Heart of Woe — A goblin Champion for with the heart of woe averages 4 strength 7 wounds for 40 points of explosive death to all models adjacent. This should kill a Chaos Lord better than half the time.
- Black Gem of Gnar — Once more the champion removes your Slann Lord probably from the game for good. That is a nice 13.5 times return on the champion.
- Black Amulet / Rune of Spite — I am rubber you take a wound no matter what your strength or regular armor is. Now imagine 3 rune of spites on the same character.
- Battle Banner — Well lets see I have 2 ranks, a flank charge and 2 wounds more than you. Well you roll a 6 and I lose. Doesn’t this ignore the whole purpose of the game.
- Crown of Command — I did 13 wounds you still roll unmodified leadership 10 and I hit you with a chair.
- Forbidden Rod — This rob is forbidden in all tournaments. Why did they even make this?