During the Kickstarter, there was a lot of talk about how many minions were needed for a single or double lair on a tile. One of the points of this discussion were that different races would spawn at different rates, but how different will they be?
Doing a breakdown of the 6 races in the game, using normal spawns we get:
- Arachnids: 2 Crawlers (melee), 2 Crawlers (range)
- Orcs: 3 Grubbers (+1 Grubber per Mucker on the board)
- Skeletons: 3 Shamblers (melee), 1 Shambler (range)
- Rats: 2 Tailless (melee), 2 Tailless (range)
- Cyclopses: 3 Syclines
- Elementals: 1 Fire, 1 Earth, 1 Air
So we can quickly see the most numerous spawns without other conditions are Arachnids, Skeletons, and Rats, each spawning 4 models each. Orcs, Cyclopses, and Elementals each spawn 3 under normal conditions.
However, under the right conditions, Orcs will be the most numerous, with 1 additional model for each captain on the board, a buildup of a couple captains can quickly result in a huge number of orcs, especially if you are dealing with more than one orc lair. This force multiplier effect is unique to the orcs, and must be taken into consideration for anyone trying to brave multiple orc lairs at once.
The other item of note is that 4 of the 6 races include more than one minion type, with elementals including 3 minion types. With the exception of the elementals, this is simply a matter of ranged vs melee troops.
The net result is that Cyclopes and Elementals do spawn less troops (25% less) meaning you should need less models of these types, just as promised. The question will be how much difference that 25% makes on the battlefield when it comes to difficulty. From what I’m seeing of the minions, difficulties will be comparable when you take spawn rates into account. However, I wonder if slower spawning minions and their resulting lower rate of treasure drops could make things more difficult in the longer run for heroes.