From a design point of view Warlord is special: Other than other popular games like Magic: The Gathering by Wizards of the Coast or the World of Warcraft TCG by UDE, Warlord doesn’t have a cost for playing characters.
Sure, you cannot play a level 4 character when you don’t have somebody sitting in rank 3, but at a certain point you have stabilized your ranks enough to play level 5 or even higher characters like the ever popular dragons. If you routinely achieve that, you’d always play the feisty lvl 4 and above characters, because once you start stunning them forward, no extra cost accrue.
From the design perspective this means that you have to be either very careful to design no too powerful higher level characters (but hey - this is part of the fun the d20 ties bring us - ultra-powerful monsters like dragons and heroes), give appropriate meta or have the Forced March rule.
For those not familiar with that rule: It states that whenever a stunned character falls forward another rank, it gets a wound. So for example, when a Terrorshard falls to the front (after flying to rank six, spending to five, stunning to four) it already has three wounds on him, making him much easier to handle for the opponent.
When previously dragon (or similar) decks became too powerful, some specific cards against that were introduced: Forced March, which nobody played because its uses were way too narrow, and Cerebrul, who offered a much better alternative, but still was played rather seldomly.
For Epic Edition the Design Team felt this posed too much of a limitation on higher level character options and introduced the Forced March rule and henceforth we saw level 4 characters with 3 hit points, level 5 characters with 4 hit points and so on.
Epic Edition failed. Was the Forced March rule part of the reason?
I’d like to know your opinion - so please vote in the poll to the right, which is going to stay open for two weeks.