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Darius Rhiannon
13-04-2005, 03:53
Stolen from the thread Gav Thorpe Started on the Warhammer forum with regards to Revisions & Patches
http://warhammer.org.uk/PhP/viewtopic.php?t=5378&highlight=


The Ratling gun thread brought up the question of when any potential fixes would be made, what people thought of regular updates, and so on. In response, I'll state what our policy is regarding updating the rules (which we have contradicted in the past, but will endeavour not to in the future ).

1. Q+As will not be used to change the rules, only to provide genuine clarification.

2. Changes to the rules will only be made when a book is updated – this does not include corrections, obviously, but really these are just a form of Q+A.

There are a number of reasons why this is the case.

First and foremost, it forces us to develop the game with a disciplined approach. Put another way, we have to get it right, there are no easy fixes. I find this focusses the mind wonderfully

There is no confusion over what the rules are. In principle, if you own the rulebook and your army book, you have the rules. You don't want to be in a tournament or playing at a club and your opponent to say, "Actually, that changed last month, you can't do that anymore." The potential for confusion is wide, and so the printed books must be the definitive source for the rules. This also reduces the amount of dedication required of players to keep 'up to date'. Wargaming already requires a good chunk of time and money on the part of players, and if they have to invest even more time in simply keeping track of continuous rules changes, then it is likely that we are failing them.

On a more practical note, we cannot simply afford the time to be constantly reviewing every single army on a regular basis. This would create an unreasonable expectation in players minds that as soon as an issue arises, the GW magic wand is waved and suddenly it goes away. I'm afraid there is no magic wand, because you simply can't run and develop a games system in that manner. We cannot encourage a quick fix envionment or perception, because it is a false outlook.

This also has implications to army books and revisits as we go forward. The principle is that we do not make dramatic changes to armies – it's simply unnecessary. We'd rather take the feedback from the previous years of use, incorporate those fixes, make any modifications required by an evolving miniatures range and then it's done. This then allows time to develop the game in new directions rather than rewriting army lists from the ground up every time we come back to one. To quote the cliché, evolution not revolution.

GAV
_________________
It is the real me. Any rules answers/ clarifications, etc are unofficial until printed (and that doesn't mean printed on your laserwriter…).

I feel GW (from reading this) has a problem differating(sp?) between, Revisions, Errata and FAQ's.

1) Revisions are what some older army books need, especially those weren't playtested. This is important for overall balance. However of the three things I mentioned it is the least important. It can wait until the next edition of the army book (of course they should identify what editiont the book is, clearly, for example by the use of a different colour border and a version number on the frontispiece)

2) Errata's can be used to change rules in the rulebook that are misunderstood/unclear. For example the magic resistance change can be considered an Errata. These too need not come up often.

3) FAQ's. These are used to make sure that all the players know how the various items, special abilities, racial skills etc work out against each other. These need to be done often. These are the ones that are most needed and which result in the least "confusion amongst players". For example, can a Ogre Hunter move and Fire with his Crossbow? Yay or Nay? Simple question, easily answered, no confusion. Either GW needs to cease and desist creating new magic items and abilities or realise that such unanswered questions are the single most frustrating things in its games today.

So again I send out a call for Clear, Concise and Explicit Rules from GW. Except from personal experiene I know how badly the GW designers react when you call "their" rules unclear.

Oh well, so it goes.

Avian
13-04-2005, 11:38
2) Errata's can be used to change rules in the rulebook that are misunderstood/unclear. For example the magic resistance change can be considered an Errata. These too need not come up often.

Bad example, the Magic Resistance issue is a lot less clear now than it was when the rulebook was published. It was neither unclear or misunderstood, it was simply felt to be not good enough by the designers, so they changed the rule in a FAQ(!). As a result you cannot trust the rulebook.

Delicious Soy
13-04-2005, 12:55
I think its awfully arrogant to think that just because you won't correct something for years means that you'll get everything right. If anything, the DE revision is proof of that.

Lord Lucifer
13-04-2005, 14:09
Soy, the point was if you resolve not to keep revising continuously you'll have more incentive, more urgent incentive, to make sure it's done right the first time.
The idea behind not constantly revising was what we had in 40K pre-4th ed.
A game where the rulebook was largely irrelevant and the amount of additional material you had to a) purchase and b) transport with your army became completely unmanageable.
Not everyone has the good fortune to be able to keep up-to-date with every release from G.W. so not everyone would get the 'full official' rules if they are revised

There's down sides to both, but at least with this one they make a stand that does not cost us extra money, and keeps us all on the same page
It's better that EVERYONE have the same rules than half the people have a few corrections

Bruen
13-04-2005, 16:59
It's better that EVERYONE have the same rules than half the people have a few corrections

Even if noone can understand some of them?

A prime example of this problem is the Tyranid Lash Whip. It was fine in the codex but the 4th edition FAQ totaly threw a spanner in the works and now noone knows how its supposed to work.

As someone who has lash whips modelled onto some of his army what am I supposed to do in the 9 months (or so) between the release of the FAQ and the release of the new Tyranids codex?

It would take them no time at all to modify the FAQ to make it clear but they won't because "we don't do FAQ's except on release of new books". ARRRRGGGHHH!

So in the end I haven't used my Tyranids or bought any more since the FAQ came out. Everyone looses.

Slyracoon
13-04-2005, 18:16
In theory, GW's policy on not revising rules constantly because it gives them an incentive to do it properly the first time is all well and good. The problem comes when it becomes apparent, time and time again, that very often GW don't get it right the first time. Refusing to revise something that badly needs it simply because of policy and their need to maintain the status quo is, in my opinion, not good.

As to the problem of constant revisions, i.e keeping up with them, I think a lot more could be done to make them easy to keep up with. For example, when the DE revision was released they could have just inserted a copy of the revision into every DE armybook. Not very expensive, no reprints, and new players know where they are. They could even take it a step further and put a copy into every box set, although that may be pushing it a bit. Anyone see any glaring flaws in this idea?

Bruen
13-04-2005, 18:47
GW has previously stated that packing boxes costs a lot of money (up to half the production cost of the box as I remember) so adding items to a box or book is likely to be expensive.

Its easy enough if they are only available online and updated to a schedule. Even if you do not have any friends or family with internet access how hard is it to go the library or webcafe once a month to download them?

Slyracoon
13-04-2005, 19:03
GW has previously stated that packing boxes costs a lot of money (up to half the production cost of the box as I remember) so adding items to a box or book is likely to be expensive.
Packing may be expensive, but I don't see how slipping in a piece of paper would make much difference. After all, they already put in those pointless leaflets advertising the other armies so it couldn't be too difficult to simply eliminate those in boxes for armies with revisions. I just throw them away anyway.

Avian
13-04-2005, 19:53
Packing may be expensive, but I don't see how slipping in a piece of paper would make much difference.
Ah, but such measures creates the (well-deserved) impression that their product is not top-notch. Economically it's not a good move.

Personally I find their proof-reading horrible (is the BS of a bruiser 3 or 4?) and it cannot possibly be that hard to find a competent person to read through army book and ask relevant questions, such as: "Just what does 'fired like a bolt-thrower mean?'"

I do NOT want errata, except in the case of outright typographical errors. Stick to new editions when you want to change the game.
I DO want FAQs that explain just what the hell the author meant when he wrote that something is "fired like a bolt-thrower"
:mad:

Delicious Soy
13-04-2005, 22:12
Maybe if they actually answered the questions every has rather than one that are so obvious its stupid. How many FAQ's have we seen avoid a pertinent question thats had a dozen shouting matches over in favour of something like 'Do spears really cost +1pt per model?'

Crazy Harborc
14-04-2005, 00:25
GW has proven that gamers using their systems will "pay" for a book of revisions, new rules corrections, etc. on a yearly basis.

Now, I am a known whiner about GW's prices. HOWEVER, as long as GW chooses to use the "pay us for them" method to get the correctios, etc. we are stuck paying or borrowing.

At this point........I do not agree with GW reprinting articles from previous years to fatten out the yearly updates (annuals) for fantasy.

Dargon
14-04-2005, 02:33
For example, when the DE revision was released they could have just inserted a copy of the revision into every DE armybook. Not very expensive, no reprints, and new players know where they are.Well, they kinda did. The Dark Elf revision was literally designed as a cut-and-paste solution - all of the changes were small enough that GW were able to fit them into the existing format of the current book. They printed them in White Dwarf, and posted them on their website, in a form that could be either cut and pasted into the book, or just slotted in as you suggest. If the demand for the Dark Elf book has required another print run since then, I suspect all the changes will now be printed directly into the new books (just as a few High Elf clarifications/typos were in it's second print run).

I remember the old days of requiring a virtual library of books to play the game (it was among the biggest complaints of 5th Edition) so I can understand GW's stance when it comes to revisions. I'm currently requiring the Dark Elf book, the White Dwarf revision issue (never got around to photocopying), the White Dwarf Dark Shadows conclusion issue (for magic items) and the SoC book (for more magic items) to compose a Dark Elf Army. With Dark Elves, it already feels like a return to the previous bookkeeping troubles of 5th Edition. Imagine if every army was like this.

Just a thought...

Avian
14-04-2005, 02:41
I remember the old days of requiring a virtual library of books to play the game (it was among the biggest complaints of 5th Edition)
I will disagree with you here. For fifth edition you only really needed the rulebook and magic book (plus your army book) and their combined weight is a lot less than the current rulebook.
Furthermore there weren't any Chronicles to bring with you.

Dargon
14-04-2005, 02:55
I will disagree with you here. For fifth edition you only really needed the rulebook and magic book (plus your army book) and their combined weight is a lot less than the current rulebook.
Furthermore there weren't any Chronicles to bring with you.
Perhaps I am mistakenly recalling 40K (it was a while back now) or perhaps the carrying around of all the magic item cards, spell cards, templates, and White Dwarf rules clarifications/changes... in which case GW seem to have failed despite a valliant attempt.

Minds... getting... fuzzy...
Must... start... making... stuff... up... to... fill... the... gaps :D
Next I'll start reminising about stealth gyrocopters (no wait, that part was true).

Avian
14-04-2005, 03:29
Possibly, actually the only real problem with 5th edition stuff-wise as I saw it was remembering the Winds of Magic spell cards - we often forgot and had to make improvised ones or simulate the cards using dice. Cudos for swapping to a dice based system (though the exact implementation of said system leaves a bit to be desired).

Slyracoon
14-04-2005, 15:00
Dargon: You're right, the DE revision was handled pretty well as far as exposure goes. I was just using it as an example because it's the biggest revision recently released for Fantasy.

Portent rumours is usually filled with gamers slavering over their keyboard for the next army release, praying for it to be on time (and I'm usually one of them). Despite this, I really wish they'd just take longer about playtesting and checking (with more than one editor :eek: ) an army book so when I eventually get my hands on it I'm not utterly crushed with disappointment. Even if it means every last model and rule ends up on the internet, a wider playtesting base than they use now is essential. Besides, if GW relies on the "wow!" factor of new armies they're just going to end up with players who move on very quickly and aren't long-term customers.

Ah, but such measures creates the (well-deserved) impression that their product is not top-notch. Economically it's not a good move.

You're right, another example of how GW has become a image and profit obsessed company :rolleyes: .

Darius Rhiannon
14-04-2005, 19:46
Actually Avain I consider that there is a precedent for MR being the way it is currently with the Bretonnians even before they FAQ'd that Errata in (although I do dislike that habit of theirs immensely) Look at the empire book, which IIRC was one of the first of 6th edition.

The items that give the equivalent to MR are mentioned as including the unit. For example, consider the Sigil of Sigmar. "The Sigil adds one extra dice to all dispel rolls against enemy spells that would affects its wearer or the unit he is with".

It also costs the same as MR(1) items in other armies.

PS I think MR(1)-on mages- would better suit HE than the Bretonnians but that is just me. Chalk up another free advantage for Bretonnians.