The 9th Age/Tactics/Arcane Compendium

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The rules for the Paths Of Magic and magic items in The 9th Age, a fan-made continuation of Warhammer Fantasy. The Paths Of Magic and rules about wizards and spellcasting are covered on their own page, the magic items and nuances surrounding them will be covered here.

The following is current as of second edition.

Special Items[edit]

These are the magical heirlooms that any army (except dwarves) can take. Each item is limited one per army, regardless of army size and can only be taken by models with an allowance of points for them (usually just characters). There are four categories of Special Equipment:

  • Weapon Enchantments
  • Armor Enchantments
  • Banner Enchantments
  • Artefacts

Weapon Enchantments[edit]

Weapon Enchantments upgrade a piece of mundane weaponry, meaning that the weapon follows the rules for both the mundane weapon and the enchantment placed upon it. Models may only have one weapon enchantment and must use the enchanted weapon even if they otherwise wouldn't (e.g. a model with an enchanted hand weapon equipped with another weapon or a model with the Weapon Master special rule). Weapon enchantments can apply to a specific weapon (e.g. lance only) or a category of weapons (e.g. close combat weapons). Always note on your army list what specific weapon is enchanted.

Blessed Inscription the weapon gains divine attacks and re-rolls failed to-wound rolls. Great for landing wounds on models, especially demons or other Aegis happy buggers, but will not help the model with armor penetration.

Titanic Might +3 strength. Note that it is only strength, not AP. Your model will have an easier time wounding enemies, but will not help them penetrate armor.

Hero's Heart hand weapons or paired weapons only. +1 attack, Strength is set to 5 and AP is set to 3. A handy weapon that will cover a lot of bases.

King Slayer +X to attacks, strength, and AP, X is equal to the number of enemy characters in base contact with the wielder's unit. Against armies like OnG or VS where many cheap characters are the norm, this item can throw down. Be warned your opponent will know what you're doing and will avoid the wielder.

Touch of Greatness +1 strength and AP, but no more than +2 to each when combined with the mundane weapon profile, meaning no +3 great weapons. When used with a lance it will be capped at +2 during the charge but will still be +1 afterwards.

Shield Breaker The weapon gains +6 AP but cannot wound on better than 3+. Handy for opening up some heavy cavalry, use on a model with many attacks to outdo the downside.

Supernatural Dexterity +2 offensive skill and Agility. Handy for a squishy guy who otherwise wouldn't be able to hold their own. Note that the agility boost won't help with a great weapon.

Cleansing Light At the start of each round of combat the bearer may choose to gain flaming attacks for the round. Simple and flexible.

Armor Enchantments[edit]

Like weapon enchantments, Armor enchantments apply to mundane armor. Unlike weapons, each individual piece of armor may be upgraded. This means armies like Highborn Elves can get up to 3 armor enchantments. Each piece of armor may only have one armor enchantment, note which armor piece is the subject of the enchantment on your army list. Armor enchantments can be specific (e.g. heavy armor) or general (e.g. suits of armor, including shields).

Death Cheater Fortitude (4+). Expensive for what it is and how easily it can be countered.

Destiny's Call standard height models only. The wearer's armor is set to 3 and cannot be improved and gains Aegis (4+), so the wearer has a 4+/4++. A limited buff, but great for kitting out a cheap character or getting some good saves onto an otherwise squishy wizard.

Essence of Mithril standard height models only. +5 armor, max 5 (so a 2+ armor save). Great for models with a good special save but a weak armor save.

Dusk Forged shield only. The bearer may reroll failed armor saves but autofails any special saves if it does so.

Ghostly Guard Heavy armor or Plate armor only. +2 armor against non-magical attacks. Helps the character tank R&F troops, but most characters will have a weapon enchantment which gives them magical attacks.

Basalt Infusion +1 armor and Aegis 3+ (vs flaming attacks), but the bearer autofails fortitude saves. only bother with it if your character is flammable or your opponent loves flaming attacks.

Alchemist's Alloy +1 armor, -2 offensive skill. A slight boost to defense for what is usually a -1 to hit in close combat. On an engineer or other character that won't be in melee, it's not a bad choice.

Willow's Ward +1 armor, impact hits distributed onto the wearer have -2 AP, the bearer cannot benefit from parry. A handy way to get +1 armor.


Most troops with options for a command group have the option to take an enchanted standard on their standard bearer. The BSB can take two enchantments, provided they have the Special Equipment allowance to do so.

Banner of Speed max 3 per army. Units with 1 or more banners of speed gain +1 advance and +2 march. Faster is always better.

Rending Banner max 3 per army. One use only, use at the start a round of combat the bearer's unit is involved in. R&F models (not characters) in the unit gain +1 AP, the effects last until combat ends. A unit can only be affected by a single rending banner at a time. Handy for busting light infantry early or helping your special units out-grind the enemy.

Stalker's Standard max 3 per army. The bearer's unit gains strider. For units of chariots or monsters, this means the unit does not take dangerous terrain tests in forests or ruins and can move full speed at all times.

Banner of the Relentless Company max 3 per army. One use only, may be used at the start of the owning player's turn. The bearer's unit has its march rate set to 15" until the end of the turn. Only one Banner of the Relentless company may be used per turn. Like Banner of Speed but a higher boost for a short amount of time. Great for being in your opponent's deployment zone on turn 2.

Banner of Discipline max 3 per army. The bearer's unit may reroll failed panic tests. If the BSB or general is in the unit, it auto-passes panic tests. Great for making a block of immovable infantry, very handy for tarpits.

Flaming Standard max 3 per army. One use only. May be used before a round of combat or before shooting with the bearer's unit, the unit has flaming attacks until it is no longer in combat or until after the shooting phase. When you need fire and you need it now, accept no substitutes.

Legion Standard max 3 per army. Increases the maximum ranks that can be added to combat resolution by 1. A unit with 2 or more of these standards get +2 instead.

Aether Icon max 3 per army. The bearer's unit gains magic resistance (1). If the unit already had magic resistance, increase it by 1. Magic resistance isn't that great in T9A, but for 45 points you could get magic resistance (3) onto a unit and that might actually make a difference.


Artefacts are individual and have no base item. Any model may take up to 2 artefacts, but artefacts with Dominant cannot be taken together.

Crown of Autocracy +1 discipline. If the bearer is general it is also worth +200 VP. Generally a pass unless you really need high discipline in a unit or area (beast herds, vermin swarm).

Book of Arcane Mastery Dominant, Wizard Apprentices or Adepts only. The bearer's first casting attempt in each magic phase gets a +2 modifier. Handy for your wee wizard to actually throw some boosted spells around.

Binding Scroll max 2 per army. One use only, may be activated after siphon the veil (phase 3) of your opponent's magic phase. Pick an enemy model and select one attribute, bound or learned spell that model has access to; the selected model cannot cast that spell this phase. Only one scroll per player turn can be in play. Great for shutting down your opponent, especially if they rely on a single spell or only have a low level wizard.

Essence of a Free Mind Dominant, Wizards only. The wizard may select spells from up to 2 paths available to it (instead of the normal 1). When you need a toolbox and you aren't EoS, this is how you do it. And even if you are EoS, you could use it to take 3 paths and truly have a Jack of All Trades (who will likely also be a master of none unless you have some weird combo).

Crown of the Wizard King not a wizard. During spell selection, randomly select a magic path (not just paths that are normally available to that race) and the bearer is a wizard apprentice in that path. The bearer cannot select the hereditary spell or take special equipment limited to wizards.

Magical Heirloom Dominant, Wizards only. The wizard knows the H spell in addition to it's other known spells (may not also choose the H spell). Means you can have wizards that know 5 spells.

Talisman of Shielding Bearer gains Aegis (5+). A nice little defensive buff, and relatively cheap too.

Talisman of the Void The bearer gains channel (1). If your magic relies on veil tokens this is the way to go.

Lightning Vambraces Gives the bearer a bound spell with decent damage. If you have nothing better to blow a die or two on, this works well.

Ranger's Boots standard height models on foot only. The bearer gains strider, +2 advance (max 10), and +4 march (max 20). If you have some sneaky character it could be fun.

Rod of Battle a sweet bound spell that gives +1 to-hit in close combat. A cheap and flexible source for combat bonuses.

Crystal Ball after spell selection (step 7 set up sequence), pick one enemy model, all spells cast by that model you have a +1 bonus to dispell. If your opponent only has 1 wizard or has only 1 high-level wizard, it could balance the playing field, but generally not a big enough bonus to worry about.

Sceptre of Power one uses only. A wizard with this artifact may add 1 magic die from the magic pool to its casting or dispell attempt after seeing the result of the initial roll. Can make the difference but a bit on the expensive side, not actually limited to wizards so anyone can feel powerful if they want to.

Dragon Staff The bearer gains a breath attack. It is only str 3 AP 0, but 2d6 auto-hits in melee is nothing to sneeze at.

Obsidian Rock Magic Resistance (2). Combo with Aether Icon to get Magic Resistance (5) on a unit for the lulz.

Dragonfire Gem Bearer gains Aegis 2+ (vs flaming attacks) but autofails fortitude saves.

Lucky Charm one use only. The bearer's model may reroll one failed armor save.

Potion of Strength cannot be taken by models with a towering presence. One use only, until the end of the player turn the bearer gains Crush Attack.

Potion of Swiftness One uses only. The bearer gains +3 agility until the end of the player turn.

Item Combos[edit]

The 9th Age Tactics