Talisman: The Horus Heresy Design Blog Part 4

Welcome to the Talisman: The Horus Heresy Design Blog.
The Blog will be split into 4 parts.

Part 1 of the Design blog can be found HERE.
Part 2 of the Design blog can be found HERE.
Part 3 of the Design blog can be found HERE.

In part 4 of the Design Blog we will be looking at some of the final changes we made to the game.

Craft/Strength ‘Values’ Removed

For T:THH, we have removed the concept of Strength and Craft values. Again, this is a limitation of a physical game, as there is no way to easily keep track of an ability going lower than its initial value.


This means that there are many cards in the game, such as the Warhorse, which no longer combines Strength with Craft value, but instead combines Strength with the new Strategy ability. Another effect of this is the ‘Portal of Power’ space, which in this game is called the Luna Naval Blockade. To smash through the blockade, players roll 2 dice and must roll equal to or lower than their chosen ability, lose one from that ability if they fail. As there is no lower limit to Close Combat and Ranged Combat, they can both be reduced to 1, should a Warlord persist at trying to break through.

Can only have 1 Talisman

Each Warlord can only carry 1 Talisman Dataslate, so they must each complete a quest in order to gain a Talisman, they cannot complete two quests and pass 1 Talisman to their team-mate. All Warlords can choose to fight other Warlords with either of their main stats.

In Talisman, being able to attack another character using Craft – psychic combat – is only possible if a character has an ability which lets them do that. In T:THH, whenever a Warlord attacks another Warlord, he may choose whether to use Close Combat or Ranged Combat, making combat much more deadly.

Starting Space

All Warlords start a game on a random Sector in either the Outer or Middle Regions, rather than having set starting Sectors as in Talisman.
This removes any potential balancing issues relating to character start positions, and can make some games shorter.


Rafts are found or made (with an Axe) in Talisman, and they do have an equivalent in T:THH, but they are now ‘followers’ who stay with you and you must pay 1 Resource (gold) each time you use them to cross the Warp.


Toad/Chaos Spawn

The dreaded Toad character remains in T:THH, renamed as Chaos Spawn. The rules they follow are identical and so they can still cause some frustration, but less so in T:THH as the chance of becoming one are much smaller.


Card Tweaks

Some Talisman cards have had their timings, types or even the effect changed to suit the new set of rules. Here are a few examples –

Divination spell – now called Veil of Time. As there is no secrecy with cards any more, Divination needed to be changed. Now, the next 5 Dataslates to be drawn are shown and one is chosen to be destroyed. This can be used to either remove a card that might be beneficial to the other team, or remove a difficult opponent that may be drawn next.

Blessed spell – now called Mark of the Fates. In Talisman, Blessed lets you replenish your Fate up to your Fate value. Mark of the Fates allows you and your team-mate (if you have one) to increase your Fate by 1.


Pool of Fortune – now as two encounters, called The Infernal Sanctorum and Monumental City. Each allegiance has a Pool of Fortune, with Fate points that only they can take, but if the other allegiance encounters these Places they can choose to destroy them!

The Gathering – now called A Call to Arms. In Talisman, The Gathering brings all spirits to the space for characters to encounter. In T:THH, there is a A Call to Arms Dataslate for each Unit type, so they can bring Titans, Command, Support and Legion Combat types to a Sector to be fought with.

Talisman: The Horus Heresy is out now on STEAM.


Talisman: The Horus Heresy (PC)

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