What excited me most were the different factions the game has on offer. In Warhammer Age of Sigmar: Storm Ground, Gasket games have included three factions for players to roleplay as: the righteous Stormcast Eternals, the eerie Nighthaunt, and the rot-focussed Maggotkin. Similar to games like Age of Wonder: Planetfall or Iron Harvest, all factions come with a unique hero: Freya Skyhelm for the Stormcast Eternals, Pellighast the Pitiless for the Nighthaunt, and Ichorian Cankerscorn for the Maggotkin. Each faction hero has a unique backstory and their own moves, skills, and cooldowns in battle. I found that these skills, in combination with how each faction summons units to the battlefield, were the key factors determining my strategy throughout a fight. Whilst the Stormcast Eternals have the ability to summon units next to their army’s hero, the Nighthaunt and Maggotkin have to alter tiles by spawning pyres or corrupting the terrain with rot. Summoning units also requires strategy, as summoning costs you power. The cost of each unit can vary, and power takes time to regenerate. For me, this also resulted in a more staggered approach, where I had to be mindful about where and when to spawn my units, and persist with specific strategies in order to win.
The unique skills of the faction heroes and the variety of faction units were two of the things I enjoyed the most about Warhammer Age of Sigmar: Storm Ground, since they produced wildly different gameplay experiences. The Nighthaunt, for example, is very much centred on a swarming strategy, where I had my hero creating pyres to spawn units and summoning health-healing wisps on others; it was incredibly satisfying to surround the enemy. The Maggotkin have the ability to alter the battlefield, putting hexes on tiles that do damage to opponents but provide bonuses to their own units. Hexes can include anything from corrosion, to poison, to disease. Corrupting the battlefield this way made for more of a cunning victory when I eventually won a campaign. The Stormcast faction had overwatch abilities that felt more like a traditional faction, which might appeal to fans of XCOM or Age of Wonders. In this way, I found the variety in every faction refreshing and I enjoyed experimenting with playstyles and factions to try out different things.