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WARHAMMER - DARK OMEN
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MAGIC ITEMS FAQ

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Author: Paulo
Email: pmerrall@yahoo.co.uk
Copyright 2003 Paul Merrall

This guide is for personal, private use only.  It may not be distributed
publicly or copied without express written permission.  It may not be used on
websites without written permission.  If you want to use this guide or any of
its information on a website, email me for permission.  I'll probably say yes.
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UPDATE 18.6.08

Wow!  I've been meaning to finish this off for years.  I've had plenty of 
people email me about it, and , well, I finally got round to playing it through
again.  In this update I finshed adding the remainder of the magic items.


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This FAQ details where to find the magic items in the game, what they do and
what I personally think of them.  The recommendations of use are merely what I
find are the best ways to use them, and the ratings reflect how useful I
personally find them.

Please note also that the units I recommend equipping the items to reflect my 
personal preferences.  For example, I much prefer the Bright Wizard to the Ice 
Mage, I think the Flagelants are amazingly good and use them in every battle, 
etc.  This is just my opinion so if I suggest a regiment that you don't like 
then you can always take the general idea and change it to a unit more to your 
liking (e.g. another close combat infantry unit instead of Flagelants).

This guide will be updated as I play through the game and remember where to
find more of the items.

Email me with queries and comments but go easy on me please: it's my first ever
FAQ.

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Grudgebringer Sword -

Where found: This sword will be in your possession at the start of the game.

Effects: Makes the wielder stronger in hand-to-hand combat.  It can also fire a
low-range, medium-power fireball against a single target.

Equip to: Grudgebringer Cavalry.

Tips for using: Fire the fireball as you unit is charging an enemy for maximum
effect.  The fireball can also be used in close combat, which works well. 
However you should be careful of hitting troops from other regiments in the
same melee.

Rating: 3/5
(Very useful, more so because of the boost it gives you in combat rather than 
for the fireball.)

*****

Book of Ashur -

Where found: Level 5, Bogenhafen (optional).  After the battle, revolve the
camera so that north is at the bottom of your screen.  Zoom in and you will
notice that one of the shop signs has a picture of a book on it.  Fire a couple
of fireballs at it to receive the book.

Effects: When equipped to a wizard it equips an extra spell.

Equip to: Bright Wizard

Rating: 4/5
(This is an essential item, particularly when your wizard is low levelled and 
only has one or two spells.)

*****

Potion of Strength -

Where found: There are four that I know of.

1st potion: Level 2, Border Princes.  The potion is carried by a regiment of
boarboyz.  Destroy them to get the potion.  However, destroying them before
they use it is nearly impossible.

2nd potion: After Level 6, Helmgart.  If you choose to defend Bogenhafen then 
when you get to Helmgart the tower has already fallen.  When you win the battle
you get given the potion as a sign of gratitude.  In all honesty this is 
probably the only Potion of Strength you will get.

3rd potion: Level 11, Blighted Towers.  One of the regiments of Orc Arrer Boyz 
has one.  The regiment will come on one of the last waves of attacks.  However,
if you manage to destroy the unit before they use the potion then the chances 
are one of the accompanying boar boyz units will pick it up and use it.

4th potion: Level 19, Hand of Nagash.  A regiment of skeleton horsemen carries 
one.  You can tell by the orange haze that surrounds them when they use it.  
Good luck trying to kill them before they use it though.

Effects: It can only be used once.  Once used it makes the regiment fight with
extreme power in close combat.

Equip to: Grudgebringer Cannon, Imperial Mortar.

Tips for using: I find it very useful in case elite troops assault the cannon. 
When that happens it's worth sacrificing the potion to keep the unit alive.

Rating: 1/5

(Only being a single-use item seriously reduces its usefulness.  If you still 
have one or two by the end battle, then you can always use them against the 
Dread King.)

*****
Enchanted Shield -

Where found: Level 7, Axebite Pass (optional).  Azguz Bloodfist gives this item
to you upon successful completion of the level.

Effects: Increases the armour rating of a regiment by 1 or gives the regiment a
basic armour rating if they do not have one.

Equip to: Flagelants

Rating: 2/5
(I love the Flagelants, they are just so good at killing things.  This item 
gives them some badly needed protection.  Of course, if you disagree with me 
about the Flagelants then it can go to some other close combat troops that 
need the extra protection.)

*****

Banner of Defiance -

Where found: Level 8, Great Forest battle 1.  A regiment of Wights carries the
banner.  Destroy them for the banner.

Effects: Makes the regiment immune to fear.  They will not retreat when charged
by undead and will not retreat if they are suffering casualties.

Equip to: Mercenary Ogres

Tips for using: Exercise caution with this item.  It is useful in that it
stops your troops from chickening out of fights but is bad in that your
regiment will not run away if they are losing close combat but will instead
fight to the bitter death, as has happened to me a number of times.  Only equip
it to close combat troops that aren't going to get killed in combat easily.

Rating: 1/5
(It's so annoying when your prime troops break when they get charged.  Stopping
that happening is really all this is good for.)

*****

Banner of Wrath -

Where found: Level 10, Great Forest battle 3.  The regiment of Arrer Boyz that
appear to the north of your deployment zone at the very start of the battle
carries it.  Their destruction will hand you the banner.

Effects: Each magic phase the banner can be used to fire up to 6 lightning
bolts at single targets within a medium range.

Equip to: Any close-combat regiment you use regularly.

Tips for using: Very effective in close combat as it will strike enemy units
with very little risk of hitting friendly troops.  It will target any enemy 
within range, which includes enemies in other melees.

Rating: 4/5
(great for giving you the edge in close combat.)

*****

Shield of Ptolos

Where found: Level 11, Blighted Towers.  It is carried by a regiment of Orc
Boyz.  Destroy them.

Effects: Makes a regiment virtually immune to arrows and bolts from bolt
throwers.  It does not protect against direct hits fromrock lobbers and 
screaming skullcatapults, though it does seem to help if the unit takes an 
indirect blast from one.

Equip to: Grudgebringer Crossbows, Wood Elf Archers.

Tips for using: Extremely useful for taking out regiments of archers.  Simply
march your crossbows to within firing range and let them take out the archers
with little risk of receiving casualties in return.

Rating: 5/5
(An essential item.  The Wood Elf Archers are better than the crossbows because
they fire further, faster and more of them can fire.  When you get them, give 
them the shield of Ptolos and replace the crossbows as your archer unit.)

*****

Wand of Jet -

Where found: Level 12, Sylvania (it's a battle in an unnamed town).  The 
Necromancer carries it.

Effects: Reduces the magic points needed to cast spells by 1 down to a minimum
of 1.  This may not sound a great deal but you will notice the difference
immediately.  It almost doubles the amount of spell casting available.

Equip to: Bright Wizard

Rating: 5/5
(Combined with the Book of Ashur this effectively doubles the potency of your 
Wizard).

*****

Hellfire Sword -

Where found: Level 12.  Use your cannon or your wizard to destroy the tower on
the north shore of the river.

Effects: It can be used in close combat every magic phase.  A ring of fire
radiates outwards from the user to attack enemy troops.  As far as I can tell,
it does not affect the strength of the wielder.

Equip to: Any close-combat regiment.

Tips for using: I believe that it can also attack friendly troops from other
regiments who are in the same fight so be careful with it.  I also find that
it's a bit weak.

Rating: 2/5
(Not boosting your strength is a negative for this.  It might give you an 
advantage in combat though.)

*****

Heart of Woe -

Where found: Before level 13, Drakenhof Castle.  The countess gives you it for
rescuing her.

Effects: When the troop carrying it is destroyed it explodes attacking all
troops in the area (friend or foe).  When it does it gets dropped and can be 
used again.  This does of course mean that the enemy unit that killed you will 
probably pick it up and become explosive themselves...  Is it worth it?

Equip to: Imperial Greatswords or other crap close combat units.

Rating: 0/5
(I suppose you could send someone on a suicide charge with it, but seriously...
why would you bother?)

*****

Banner of Arcane Warding -

Where Found: Level 15, Attack on the Orc Camp (optional).  It is carried by
one of the first regiments of Big 'uns that attacks in the second wave.

Effects: Nullifies incoming hostile spells making the unit virtually
invulnerable to magic.  It is not infallible but it does dispel the majority of
incoming magic.

Equip to: Grudgebringer Cavalry

Tips for using: Equipping it to cavlry will give you a good mage-response 
weapon, since you will be able to swiftly charge down enemy mages.  It's an 
especially good option for when they do 'hit and run' teleport attacks near 
you.  When the cavalry has charged them it's pretty much too late for the 
enemy wizard.  It also helps if you keep the unit that is equipped with the 
banner near the front of your force so that the hit-and-run mages target them 
rather than and unprotected unit.

Rating: 3/5
(It's impossible to predict which unit the Necromancer/Shaman will target but 
this helps when trying to close in on one.)

*****

Horn of Urgok -

Where Found: Level 15, Attack on the Orc Camp (optional).  To the northwest of 
the camp there are two orc statues.  The left hand statue has the horn, but it 
takes quite a few fireballs to get.

Effects: It makes any fleeing regiment of yours instantly rally.  It doesn't 
work on any unit that is permanently broken though (depicted when they have a 
waving white flag).  It also has a limited range, although quite a large one, 
so it won't work from across the battlefield.  Apparently it also makes enemy 
units flee as well, but I don't remember that ever happening.

Equip to: Mercenary Ogres

Tips for using: This is most useful when your wizard gets charged (since you 
don't want him in hand to hand combat).  As soon as he gets charged make him 
flee.  When he's a safe distance away, or some other unit has pinned the 
chargers, then the horn will bring him back under control.  It's also good to 
rally troops that fall back from combat so you can bring them back to support.
I suggest equipping them to the Ogres because you will of course have given 
them the Banner of Defiance like I suggested.  The horn is useless if the 
regiment carrying it flees, and the banner stops that from happening.  Ogres 
are also sturdy enough that you can involve them in the thick of the fighting 
where all the other regiments will be in range to hear it.

Rating: 3/5
(It's more useful for calming your own units than panicking the enemy, but 
surely that's worth trying every now and again anyway.)

*****

Staff of Osiris -

Where found: Level 17, Ogre Country (optional).  In the far northwest corner of
the map you will find a rock with an arrangement of stones shaped like an arrow
nearby.  Hit the rock with a few fireballs to get the staff.

Effects: Once every magic cycle the staff can be used to shoot a straight
low-ranged beam of lightning at no cost in magic.  The beam acts like the
'blast' magic power of the Bright Wizard, and it's pretty strong.

Equip to: Bright Wizard

Rating: 2/5
(You'll usually be too busy concentrating on your other spells to bother with 
this, but's worth remembering every now and then.  It packs a punch, and is 
worth remembering about when you've used up all your magic points.  It's also 
instant, you don't need to wait for him to cast it, so it's a bit more 
accurate than blast.)

*****

Storm Sword -

Where found: Level 18, Northern Wastes battle 1.  The sword is carried by a
regiment of Skeleton Horsemen that appear to the east.

Effects: The sword makes the bearer a lot stronger in close combat.  It can
also be used once per magic phase to attack nearby enemies with several
lightning bolts in a similar way to the Banner of Wrath.  I think this can only
be done whilst in close combat though.

Equip to: Ragnar's Wolves

Rating: 4/5
(I sometimes find that the fresh, inexperienced Wolves are dissapointingly weak
when you first get them.  This sword should help to bolster them up to the 
dangerous unit that they should be.  Also, those bolts are really useful, just 
like the ones from the Banner of Wrath.)

*****

Spelleater Shield -

Where found: Level 22, Forest of Loren battle 2 (optional).  You will get to 
play this battle if you turn down the offer to help the treeman SO MAKE SURE 
YOU REFUSE.  To the northeast of the map is a circle of stones.  The 
northernmost stone has the shield and it takes a lot of magic to get it, 
although if you drop a Conflagration of Doom on the stones then it pops right 
out.

Effects: It works just the same as the Banner of Arcane Warding in that it 
makes the regiment immune to magic.  However rather than simply nullifying the 
spell it drains the power from it and adds magic points to your stock for your 
own wizard to use.

Equip to: Ragnar's Wolves

Tips for Using:  Just the same as for the Banner of Arcane Warding.  Keep the 
immune units to the front of your army and laugh at the Necromancer that tries 
to cast magic on the two units.  Then charge him down and take him out in close
combat.

Rating: 3/5
(It's more useful for nullifying spells than for absorbing the magic points.  
The more immune units you have the better, in my opinion.)

*****

Dragonhelm -

Where found: Level 23, Bretonia.  In the northwest corner of the map is a 
tower.  It takes A LOT of magic (or 1 Conflagration of Doom) to destroy the 
tower and get the Dragonhelm.

Effects:  It makes the regiment completely immune to fire based attacks.  Or to
put it in simple terms it makes the regiment immune to the effects of the 
Screaming Skull Catapults.

(OK this one really irritates me.  You get the item with only 2 battles to go, 
and one of them doesn't even have the Skull Catapults in it!  It would have 
been great to give it to your archers so they could march forward and 
annihilate the catapults and archers safely, but it counts as a shield so you 
can't equip it at the same time as the Shield of Ptolos.  Honestly, wouldn't 
this have been REALLY useful a few battles back?)

However, as I wrote that I had an idea:

Equip to:  Any close combat regiment.

Tips for using:  This is a completely untested theory, but logically the 
regiment should be immune to any 'accidental' damge from your Bright Wizard's 
spells too.  I'm going to try marching a protected regiment into close combat 
to pin down the enemy and then dropping a Conflgration of Doom on their heads 
or raising a Firestorm.  It should incinerate the enemy regiment and leave 
your's unharmed.  I'll try it out and see how it works.

Rating: 1/5
(You get this far too late in the game for it to be any real use.  The one 
point is for the above untested theoretical use.  I'll see how it works and 
might update this guide to reflect my findings.  It might be a good way to beat
the Dread King...)

*****

Runefang -

Where found: Before Level 25, The Dread King.  The Emperor gives you the sword 
for the final battle.

Effects: This sword simply slices through the unead, drastically raising your 
strength and effectiveness against them.  It doesn't shoot any lightning or 
flames though.

Equip to: Grudgebringer Cavalry.  Give the Grudgebringer Sword to the 
Flagelants or Ogres for the last battle.

Rating: 3/5
(Wouldn't it have been nice to get this a bit earlier?  Then it really WOULD 
have been useful!)

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I would like to thank the following people who emailed me about where to find 
the Horn of Urgok:
Peter Ireland
Simon Lo
'Jesus Christ' (probably not his real name)
Dean Bryan
Daniel Garner

Thanks to Peter Ireland for clearing up the matter of whether the Heart of Woe 
was a single use item or not.

Thanks also to Eric Jousma whose email finally encouraged me finish this guide 
after about 5 years.