Whether you play Warhammer, Warmachine, Flames of War or any other wargame, a fun part of the hobby for many people is designing the army you’re going to wage war with. Here at Graven Games, we thought it was about time we let you know how we go about list building for our wargames, using a free piece of software called Battlescribe.
BattleScribe is a program designed to let you easily create and edit army lists for any wargame you play. It has an intuitive user interface so it’s simple and quick to use, but is powerful enough to deal with complex armies and units. It has a professional feel and look to it, even though its a free program and it works on all major systems, including Windows, Mac, Linux & Android or any OS that runs Java.
Once you have downloaded and installed Battlescribe from www.battlescribe.net you will need to add a data file to it containing the information for the wargame(s) you play. You can create your own data files, but there’s often no need as a quick google search should allow you to find some that have been already made for your wargame or faction. You can either download and import these files, or add a data repository via the File Menu, which allows BattleScribe to check for updates. For more on setting up BattleScribe, visit their Help Overview.
Once BattleScribe is setup with the data files/repositories, the fun starts. You can choose your game system and the army you wish to build a list for and from there you will be able to select units and options/wargear to simply and quickly create your army lists while BattleScribe does all the points calculations for you. We found that BattleScribe makes the whole process of list building such a breeze, that we often spend longer than intended just playing around with different lists and options, coming up with wild and original armies.
Once you have created your army list, BattleScribe provides you with several choices, including the option to Save and/or Print your list, or export it to HTML. We like the last option, as it makes it really easy to email your list to a friend, or post on a website.
Another thing we like about BattleScribe is that it’s clever enough to handle and warn you about errors in your army lists. For example, if you were building a list for Warhammer 40k, in most cases you would be allowed a maximum of 3 heavy support choices. If you selected 4 in BattleScribe you would get a warning message in the warning area at the bottom of the screen explaining the error. The same thing would happen if you exceeded your points value, gave one of your units too many weapons, that kind of thing. If you’re still using a pen, paper & and a calculator, or even some kind of spreadsheet, you’re missing out on these time saving features built into BattleScribe. Most of the time we use BattleScribe on a PC, but also have it installed on an Android Smartphone, which means that wherever we are we can have our lists with us, or build new ones!
Head over to http://www.battlescribe.net and try out for yourself.