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Augmented Reality and the Age of Sigmar: The New Warhammer Card Game

Almost everyone who’s played a tabletop game has heard of Warhammer. Back in the day, there was Warhammer: Fantasy Battles, that miniatures game with orcs, elves, demons and the undead squaring off in formation on a terrain-filled landscape. Then, there was Warhammer 40,000, also called 40K, a grimdark future sci-fi take on this concept, with Imperial Space Marines fighting alien Tyranid and demonic Chaos. Warhammer: Age of Sigmar is a relaunch of Warhammer: Fantasy Battles after an in-game apocalypse, with some elements of the sci-fi trappings of 40K mixed in.

Everything is different now. The miniatures gameplay and universe is completely revamped. And now there’s a paper and digital card game spinoff from Playfusion, the studio behind the augmented-reality card game Lightseekers. It’s called Warhammer: Age of Sigmar: Champions and you can check out the trailer above.

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Warhammer Age of Sigmar: Champions

Launching August 2 simultaneously in hobby shops and online, Warhammer Age of Sigmar: Champions puts an interesting spin on simultaneous paper and digital play. Each physical card has a unique code that can scan into the digital card game, giving you one-to-one playability across both platforms for no additional cost. Not only that, but if a player owns duplicate cards, they can turn them into shards in the game that can be used to level up the cards online. We spoke with Mark Gerhard, the co-founder and CEO of Playfusion, about integration of paper and digital play for this innovative new card game and how the card game fits into the Age of Sigmar story.

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Getting Involved with the Warhammer Universe

So how did Playfusion, a studio best known for an all-ages toys-to-life / card game, get involved with Games Workshop and the Age of Sigmar property? “As our PlayFusion headquarters is based in Cambridge, UK, which is not far from Games Workshop, we have always been huge fans of the Warhammer universe,” said Gerhard. “We approached Games Workshop with a view towards a long-term partnership on expanding the Warhammer universe in compelling new ways.”

Gerhard says that some of the AR technology that Playfusion developed for Lightseekers attracted Games Workshop toward the partnership with Playfusion. There are four elements in Lightseekers that Playfusion plans to bring forward to Age of Sigmar: Champions, according to Gerhard: “Physical-to-digital interaction, enhanced reality, accessible yet highly strategic and tactical games that can be played without a boring resource or mana, and fast rotating buffs to add real pace to the gameplay.”

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Age of Sigmar: Champions and Augmented Reality

That’s not to say that Champions is all that similar to Lightseekers. There are quite a few mechanics unique to this new game, according to Gerhard. “These include battle lanes with highlighted subjects, cards whose values change when stacked on other cards, and quests that reveal powerful blessings from the Gods when completed by Champions,” said Gerhard. “All of this is powered by PlayFusion’s Enhanced Reality Engine which, as a result, every single card features enhanced-reality effects and can be scanned into the app to be played for free in the digital game.”

Integration of Paper and Digital Play

People who want to play Warhammer Age of Sigmar: Champions in hobby shops and online won’t have to buy the same cards twice. “Every single card we sell has a unique code printed on it,” said Gerhard. “That means players can play the same exact cards both physically and digitally without any additional cost.” Like other digital card games, this game will include a resource system called shards, used for crafting new cards. Players will be able to acquire shards by scanning in more copies of their physical cards than they need, according to Gerhard. He also pointed out that the game will have a trading feature for unclaimed cards, and cards can also be “compared side by side to another player’s deck to see the dynamic stats, and how they match up to each other.”

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The Age of Sigmar Story

Since Age of Sigmar is fertile new story ground, seeing as it takes place after an apocalypse event, there is enormous opportunity to complement the story through the card game, and Gerhard says that Playfusion plans to work closely with Games Workshop story-wise. The initial Warhammer Age of Sigmar: Champions set draws primarily from the latest Age of Sigmar miniatures game boxed set, Soul Wars, which was just released in June.

Warhammer Age of Sigmar: Champions is a game that will appeal to Warhammer fans, Lightseekers fans, people who play paper card games, those who play digitally, and those who play both. Take a look at this compelling new licensed card game when it hits August 2 in hobby shops and on Google Play and the iOS App Store, with a Steam launch for PC to follow sometime later.

Image Credits: Games Workshop/PlayFusion

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