Total War: WARHAMMER Wiki

Combat is the art of using units to kill or rout enemy units during battle. This article concerns mainly melee attack, melee defence, the chance to hit and damage dealt. For some information on resistances, see Damage channel as of now.

Chance to Hit[]

The chance to hit is determined by the following calculation (attacker's attack skill vs. target's melee defense):

Chance to hit = ( 35 + (Icon stat attack.png Melee attack - Icon stat defence.png Melee defense) ) %

Each unit has a minimum 8% chance to hit after applying modifiers and a maximum of 90% (or 10% chance to miss). Stats are modified by fatigue levels before the calculation.

Temple Guards fight Rat Ogres
Wh2 main lzd inf temple guards.png
  • Icon stat attack.png Melee attack 32
  • Icon stat defence.png Melee defense 38
Lizard chance to hit →
35 + (32 - 26) = 41%
← Rat chance to hit
35 + (26 - 38) = 23%
  • Icon stat attack.png Melee attack 26
  • Icon stat defence.png Melee defense 26
Wh2 main skv mon rat ogres.png
In short
A higher attack skill makes units more likely to hit, while a higher defense makes them more difficult for the enemy to hit. However, since pure random number generation is used, it's entirely possible to have a string of hits or misses. Higher skills levels merely reduce the chance of that occurring.


If the melee attack of one unit hits another, damage is dealt.

  • The base damage value is fixed according to the weapon equipped:
Total damage = Icon Stat Damage Base.pngBase Weapon Damage + Modifier icon armour piercing.png Armour-piercing damage
  • Units charging the enemy will also deal impact damage, calculated according to their speed and mass. The resulting damage is 70% armor piercing. See Patch 1.12.1 for more details. In addition, Charge Bonus is applied to attacks for a short period of time (15 seconds) after chargin
  • Armour reduces incoming base damage, but not armour-piercing damage. The armour value corresponds directly to a randomized percentage-based reduction, where the minimum value of damage reduction is half the armour value, and the maximum value of damage reduction is the full armour value:
Mitigated Damage Taken = Icon Stat Damage Base.png Base Damage * ( 100 - Icon stat armour.png Armour * random(0.5, 1) )%
  • Shields provide a flat percentage chance to deflect missiles, but do not affect armor values.
  • No attack can deal less than 1 total damage.
Temple Guards fight Rat Ogres
Wh2 main lzd inf temple guards.png
  • Icon stat damage.png Damage 13
  • Modifier icon armour piercing.png Armor-piercing damage 29
  • Icon stat armour.png Armour 85
Lizard maximum damage →
(13 * (1 - 30*0.005)) + 29 = 40.05
Lizard minimum damage →
13 * (1 - 30*0.01)) + 29 = 38.1
← Rat maximum damage
(22 * (1 - 85*0.005) + 58 = 70.65
← Rat minimum damage
(22 * (1 - 85*0.01) + 58 = 61.3
  • Icon stat damage.png Damage 22
  • Modifier icon armour piercing.png Armor-piercing damage 58
  • Icon stat armour.png Armour 30
Wh2 main skv mon rat ogres.png
  • A word of note: Attack animations matter. Some units have very favourable or unfavourable attack animations, so the pure stats are not always all that matter.


  • Melee attack and defense are responsible for the chance to hit and increasing them according to the units' purpose (more defense for tanks, meat shields, and tar pits, more attack for those who are supposed to take down the enemy) is generally a good idea.
  • Armour is essentially capped at 200, providing the maximum (near 100%) damage reduction against regular attacks. To bring down a unit with an armour value at or approaching this level, Armour-piercing damage is necessary. However, every attack in the game deals some amount of armour-piercing damage.


Parts of this article are possible thanks to ferriswheel9ndam9 on Reddit. (Some information is possibly outdated or incorrect, particularly concerning attack intervals).
For a very good summary of the theory behind combat see also this reddit comment.