Kings of War Third Edition: The Rulebook

Phew… we’ve just recovered from the madness of GenCon but the excitement isn’t close to stopping! Last month we announced that Kings of War Third Edition is due for release this October and now we’re delving deeper into this hugely anticipated launch.

The Third Edition is the perfect opportunity for us to make sure Kings of War is the absolute best mass fantasy battle game ever. Mantic, alongside the rules committee and playtesters, have been working extremely hard to make sure this edition evolves and develops the groundwork laid by Second Edition and the subsequent Clash of Kings supplements.

There’s already a great deal of excitement about the new edition but over the next week, we’ll be turning that excitement up to 11! Each day we’ll be revealing one of the new products that will be coming out as part of the Third Edition release, before pre-orders go live with our retailer partners and Mantic website from Friday. Anyway, enough of that, let’s crack on with the first spotlight…


Well, it seems like a good idea to start with the rulebook! The first print of Third Edition will be a limited-edition hardback rulebook – and we’re expecting it to sell out pretty fast. So, if you want to prove your dedication to KoW, this is the book for you.

Not final. Might change a little.

This mighty tome is almost double the size of Second Edition and clocks in at around 400 pages! Now, don’t worry, that doesn’t mean we’ve made the rules twice as complicated. Instead, you’ll find around 200 pages of background on the world of Pannithor and the many races that inhabit it.


Our designer Duncan has been very busy laying out all the pages and making sure the new book looks amazing. It should still feel familiar to Kings of War fans but has been given a glossy makeover.

Not final – subject to change.

A little like Second Edition, the army lists begin with a brief introduction about the background of the faction. Unlike Second Edition though, this introductory fluff gives details about each unit – rather than being included alongside the unit listing itself. This cleans things up nicely when it comes to army lists.

Absolutely, definitely not final.


The unit entries have had a major overhaul, particularly when it comes to units that can be taken as troops, regiments, hordes or legions. Now the shared stats for these unit sizes (Sp, Me, Ra and De) are shown to the left, while stats that change due to the unit size are shown to the right.

Underneath you’ll see any Special Rules and something else new for Third Edition, keywords. Some Special Rules only affect a unit with a particular Keyword.

What’s more, we’ve made Unit Strength much clearer and it’s now included alongside the unit entry (under the heading US).

Certainly not final. Stuff may change.

Of course, we’ll have more information on what’s changed stats-wise for each army as we near the launch. The Army Lists included in the rulebook are (drum roll please):

  • Basileans
  • Dwarfs
  • Elves
  • Northern Alliance
  • Forces of Nature
  • Ogres
  • The Trident Realm
  • Abyssal Dwarfs
  • Forces of the Abyss
  • Empire of Dust
  • Goblins
  • Nightstalkers
  • Orcs
  • Undead

But where is [x] army? Fret not dear reader. Armies of Pannithor (the Third Edition equivalent of Uncharted Empires) will be released just six weeks after the launch of Third Edition. So, you’ve got time to digest the new rules before cracking on with stuff like Ratkin. We’ll be covering the armies included in this supplement in a future blog.


There’s an entire section dedicated to giving more background on the world of Pannithor (previously known as Mantica). Pannithor is in fact the wider world, while Mantica was the area of the map we previously focused on.

Not fin… oh, you know the drill by now.

Alongside the history of Pannithor there are more details on each faction too. Perfect, if you want to delve into your favourite army, or choose a theme for a new one.

Well, there’s plenty of information to digest there. Tomorrow we’ll be talking about the brand-new two-player starter set, Shadows in the North.


  1. Goblins get ‘throwing mastiffs’? Yeah, Goblins really needed more shooting…..

  2. I’m so looking forward to the release of the Northern Alliance forces. The only army I prefer to Basilia and their puddy cats (and my Vanguard force could really do with the company).

  3. “The unit is equipped with a Mawpup, which must be used when the unit attacks in MELEE.” It’s not a ranged item.

  4. Its not shooting Joe, its melee attacks.

    Cool spoilers!!

    Text suggestion: “CONSUMING” the mawpup struck me as a little gruesome xD 😉

  5. Kevin stevenson August 6, 2019 at 4:14 pm

    Twilight kin????

  6. Sydney Kruszewski August 6, 2019 at 4:38 pm

    Holy moly!! I want this. I want this book now! When can I pre-order this holy text of fantasy mass combatness?

  7. Carsten Luxhøj-Pedersen August 6, 2019 at 4:54 pm

    Sounds great. Really like the look of the book, will we be able to order the limited edition from our FLGS?

  8. Carsten, 20 or so of us in the group I play in all got together and have talked to our FLGS. We preordered 20 some books to be sure both that we all get our books on release and also ensuring that the store doesn’t get stuck with books on the shelves (they still have some 2018 and 2017 summer campaign books just taking up space).

  9. Michal 'MiSiO' August 6, 2019 at 7:14 pm

    Goblins does not get Throwing mastiffs. This is MELEE only attack ans Sniffs are 18″ short bows now. So… I like it a lot.

    Amazing small spoilers here and there. Looks great so far!

  10. A little disappointed that Kingdoms of Men is not in the main book. I was hoping to get started on a couple variants of them for the new edition.

  11. Mega excited! One thing – *separately* not seperately! Hope this book is getting proper editing! I would hereby like to volunteer myself for early access to go over everything for spelling mistakes

  12. Yes it’s had proper editing and proofing. That typo is already on the list to fix 🙂

  13. Where are the kingdoms of men? Do will have to buy another book for this basic army?

  14. Exciting. Given that it’s 400 pages, I hope there’s a Gamer’s Edition like 2nd ed. My aging puny arms will struggle carrying such a huge tome around along with my army.

  15. Oh this looks so good. Can’t wait

  16. Count me in!!! Iam so hyped for this and can’t wait to get it into my hands! The overall design looks pretty good so far! I really like the greenish design, including the ornaments and lines, plus the half transparent fading thing into the backround pictures :D!

    P.S. I don’t like the big, bold font, it’s to modern IMHO. Why don’t you try a more filigree one, like ‘Enchanted Lands’ or ‘Scurlock’ or ‘Aniron’? 🙂

  17. Not happy that iw ill have to buy both books just to get kingdoms of men army list

  18. Not happy that i am going to have to buy both books just for kingdom of men army list Smacks of GW tatics may even forget about it all together

  19. That looks very promising! I actually like the idea of separate books, else they would get too think anyway!
    And I deeply appreciate that you bring out lore AND great balanced rules even for so many models and armies that you do not manifacture yourselves! Thank you Mantic, I think it shows your love and passion for the hobby as a whole!

    Are you planning to make an offer for both books together however? Collector’s Edition style or something?

  20. Urs Noetzelmann August 8, 2019 at 10:15 pm

    And where is the Kingdom of Men? I am not binning a whole painted army…

  21. Apparently they are taking a leaf out of GW book and bringing another book out 6 weeks later with the Kingdom of Men army list list so you will have to buy Both books what a rip off

  22. Just when I thought I was out . . . they drag me back in!

    Very excited about the Northern force – reminds me of a chapter or two I wrote 8 years ago ;). Definitely collecting those. AND the Nightsalkers.

  23. I was attracted to Mantic games because they allowed miniatures from all manufacturers in Kings of War. Removing Kingdom of Men from Vanguard and the third edition of Kings of War sends a clear message, people with large collections of miniatures from many manufacturers are not welcome.
    I have purchased miniatures for 40 years from many manufacturers including Mantic. I was going to pre-order the rule book and some minis but now there is no point since I cannot play with my existing army.
    I guess I will have to wait until another company (that copies Games Workshop games) comes along to use my army.

  24. Kevin Stevenson August 9, 2019 at 8:41 pm

    K.o.m have moved to the supplement book and are continued to be supported. The expanded world will give us more options, not less. Most of my minis are not mantic sourced and I feel very welcome. In fact I’ve just added a unit of GWs Hobbit goblins as Abyssal Larvae (as mantic don’t make em). I think mantic are trying hard to fill their own army slots in full (as often requested) but that doesn’t leave you or I out in the cold. It’s a big fun tent.

  25. I’ve been on the KoW fence for several years now and recently I finally found an opponent so I’m very disappointed that he’s another one having second thoughts over the rules due to the lack of a Kingdom of Men list in the Rulebook. It’s obviously a popular list so I would have thought the most popular lists would go in the Rulebook. Whatever the reason may be, and I’m prepared to accept what people say until they are proven wrong, I’m afraid there are people viewing this as a Mantic armies ‘catalogue’ Rulebook. Whatever, it is obviously too late to do anything about this now.

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