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Malice313
08-08-2010, 14:36
I was looking at the shift from having equipment lists for character models to the more standardised lists seen in current codices.

Its interesting as the unit leader characters started off being very standardised and the Hero characters had so much variation that they had randomly generated equipment.

The term Character is a throw back to when there was a more narrative element to 4+k and its links to rpgs of the time.

For a long time though there has been a move away from this to a system with specialised equipment or skill being associated with a particular type of squad, or equipment coming standard rather than being optional upgrade.

Personally I find that after playing an army for several dozen battles, choices tend to seem limited. You also tend to see the same army cropping up time and again in your opponents too (though this is not unique to any edition of the rules).

The move from a very pure wargame to a more rpg orientated game focusing on heroes and their equipment was one of the things that made Warcraft 3 less popular than its predecessor. 4+k seems to be heading in the opposite direction.

Do the forum members see the move away from a rule set focused of equipment, skills and characters to a standardised list as a positive move for both the identity and playability of the game?

Zweischneid
08-08-2010, 14:56
The move from a very pure wargame to a more rpg orientated game focusing on heroes and their equipment was one of the things that made Warcraft 3 less popular than its predecessor.

Was it?

Warcraft III set all kinds of crazy sales-records in its time.

And even if it had not, what makes you think that particular change over Warcraft 2 is the cause of less sales over other changes (new graphics, new factions, new units, etc.., etc..,etc.. )

Malice313
08-08-2010, 15:01
It certainly did not remain the bench mark game of its type (rts in this instance) for as long as other Blizzard games.

The Hero focus is one I have often heard bought up. No evidence for it.

barrangas
08-08-2010, 15:15
I think it depends on the balance of the game in question for me. Generally I like a lot of options to choose from and get tired of playing with/against the same lists quickly no matter what. I never played RT or 2nd Ed, so I can't say I'd like it better or not. I can say that I liked DoW Dark Crusade and Soulstorm a lot better then DoW2. I like being able to play all the races on equal footing, the character and province upgrades, and the fact that I can deploy multiple units and be able to write them off when they die. Having to protect heroic units and only being able to use 4 of them at a time kind of sucks, IMO. Alternately I prefer older editions of D&D to 4th Ed as they don't focus as heavily on tactical minitures and don't railroad your characters. I've already have enough miniture games, and like a more freeform RPG.

Malice313
08-08-2010, 15:44
Alternately I prefer older editions of D&D to 4th Ed as they don't focus as heavily on tactical minitures and don't railroad your characters.

That's a very interesting comparison!:) It goes straight to the heart of my question. Is there a balance between the two and is this what forum members would like to see in 40k or should never the twain meet?

mrln68
08-08-2010, 15:46
That is probably one of the biggest reasons I stopped playing GW's current version of 40K. I don't want to choose from a half dozen different options in the army list - I liked the armory which was used in 3rd and 4th (mostly the 3rd Ed. Armories). Conversion potential and better fluff are my main reasons - but it also feels like the game is getting dumbed down.

To the other thing....Warcraft III was a HUGE success and still remains very popular. Personally I think people from Australia are all Kangaroos...but I have no evidence for it. =p

Malice313
08-08-2010, 15:50
To the other thing....Warcraft III was a HUGE success and still remains very popular. Personally I think people from Australia are all Kangaroos...but I have no evidence for it. =p

Some of us are platypi or Tassie Devils.:angel: Then... there are the wombats...:(

I do see your point about limited options. There are a lot more tank variants in the IG list than previously, but they are still just variants of the same two tanks from 2nd ed. Many of those "variants" are just extensions on themes devised in 2nd ed. Does more of the same really expand a list?

It was nice to have special rules for your specially converted up squads. It feels kind of hollow to use my specially converted up and meticulously painted super-Raptors lead my Cpt. Thunderpants as the bland and appropriately cheap choice they now are.

I see the same thing in the bionic-ed up SM opponent I play. Lots of Necrons went into the bitz box for what is now a pretty standard army list.

barrangas
08-08-2010, 16:02
That's a very interesting comparison!:) It goes straight to the heart of my question. Is there a balance between the two and is this what forum members would like to see in 40k or should never the twain meet?

I think it would be a matter of scale. I've got no problems with giving new units, armies (for the most part), and tacticle options to 40k. I think giving it more RPG elements would slow it down considerably and/or turn it into Herohammer unless some one at GW had an extreme stroke of genius.

I think a more RPG oriented version could be done at a squad level. Necromunda is a good example of this. You have a single squad to worry about so you can have greater detail per model.

Malice313
08-08-2010, 16:16
I think it would be a matter of scale. I've got no problems with giving new units, armies (for the most part), and tacticle options to 40k. I think giving it more RPG elements would slow it down considerably and/or turn it into Herohammer unless some one at GW had an extreme stroke of genius.

I think a more RPG oriented version could be done at a squad level. Necromunda is a good example of this. You have a single squad to worry about so you can have greater detail per model.

There doesn't seem to be consideration for scale in the basic rules though. The allocation for armour saves makes large scale battles like pulling teeth!

Why should Heroes/RPG elements be taken out to, arguably, ease play on large scale only to have something new really throw a massive spanner into the works.

Nick Lunds Kill Team does well on a skirmish level. Indeed several rules from Kill Team ended up in Necromunda, what with Mark Copplestones involvement. Also Advanced Space Crusade is a good squad sized game where individual courage of the miniatures have to make thought out advanced into alien death-traps. There is even treasure to find and hostages to release.

You can play as any marine force at first or add the IG and Eldar list into a spearhead in boarding torpedos headed straight into a hive invasion ship in deep space to give it the sniffles before the Tyranid counter assault force starts waking up. Your object is to shut down major organs (just like a disease) to cripple, paralyse or kill the ship depending on orders, while the Tyranids must wipe out and contain the human pathogens before too much damage is done. Don't worry, more wake up in the status sacs every minute to come to your aid.

Sir_Turalyon
08-08-2010, 16:17
Do the forum members see the move away from a rule set focused of equipment, skills and characters to a standardised list as a positive move for both the identity and playability of the game?


Yes and yes, and I don't see it as moving away from characters' customization anyway - idea of colonel, comissar and primaris psyker each having his own characterful list of availiable wargear has more potential than giving each 50 points worth pick from the same wargear list. It makes picking one character over other more meaningful; in latter case eighter all end up with the same combinations of wargear, or worse, game is dominated by few most powerful combinations, unlikely for character using it (Librarian with Iron Halo, lightning claws and might of heroes, anyone?).

I especially like how it's done with Space Wolves sagas, where no character has access to every saga and two wound characters have pretty different lists to chose from. You really get gear that complements each character's style rather than some good combo from armoury loaded on character that work best as vehicle for said combo.

impala
08-08-2010, 16:19
Historical wargames have fewer options that 40K, and some, like Tactia, have none at all (This is your Early Imperial Roman army. take it or leave it.) This has a net effect of giving each army a really distinct identity, but at the same time, there is no way to overcome any shortcomings in the army. Thus, if your Late Imperial Romans had a particular weakness that could be exploited by a cunning Hun commander, you would have to be doubly cunning to overcome it. You wouldn't have the option to swap out a unit of Legionaires for Auxilia.

So WH40K does still have a lot of options, but as they become fewer, it does give each army more unique character.

barrangas
08-08-2010, 16:31
There doesn't seem to be consideration for scale in the basic rules though. The allocation for armour saves makes large scale battles like pulling teeth!

Why should one thing be taken out to, arguably, ease play on large scale only to have something new really throw a spanner into the works.

Not in the basic rules, but you do have Apocolypse. If I remember correctly their is a certain point where weapons stop allowing armor saves (Str 7 I think). You also have turn time limits IIRC. Also the armor save system could be a weakness of the game mechanics it self. I've seen a number of games do damage by comparing a weapons str + a die roll vs a static armor value lately.

In Necromunda you have things like ammo rolls, limited ordinance (grenades), different melee weapon values, specific armor rules, and your guys can get wounded and still remain in play. All these rules would slow down game play in regular 40k.

Khorney Joke
08-08-2010, 16:57
There is a simple test for this;

You could not play modern 40K with a single mini, going through a story, without massive rule adjustment. Back in RT times, it was an EXPLICITLY MENTIONED IDEA. Then again, Rogue Trader rules made large-scale games literally eternal, and rolling multiple dice at one time was an advanced concept.

Malice313
08-08-2010, 17:08
So WH40K does still have a lot of options, but as they become fewer, it does give each army more unique character.

A less is more argument?

One of the ways my goons have tried to break the boredom in previous editions was to throw an unexpected wargear into the mix, often requiring an untested tactic to get it in effective range.

Quite often it is the quirky stuff in the fluff of an army that makes this change available.

New list just don't have that sort of flexibility and the beige nature of the list could benefit from a bit of X factor spicing up.

So I would not say more is less.


it was an EXPLICITLY MENTIONED IDEA.

So is its modern counterpart Kill Team, and like your scenario both are not the way the game was envisioned to be played... though unlike Kill Team the flexibility of RT would have allowed Solo play with virtually no rule changes.

Wolf Lord Balrog
08-08-2010, 17:18
I was looking at the shift from having equipment lists for character models to the more standardised lists seen in current codices.

I've read this whole thread, and I can't figure out what exactly you are arguing for/against.

Malice313
08-08-2010, 17:41
I've read this whole thread, and I can't figure out what exactly you are arguing for/against.

I've asked for the opinions, based on two hypothetical, of forum member which is not a traditional for/against argument.

Does the streamlining of the rules suit your playstyle, or do you prefer extra equipment, skills etc to help define you squads and your enjoyment of them. Do you hold a more middle ground position.

Wolf Lord Balrog
08-08-2010, 17:50
I've asked for the opinions, based on two hypothetical, of forum member which is not a traditional for/against argument.

Does the streamlining of the rules suit your playstyle, or do you prefer extra equipment, skills etc to help define you squads and your enjoyment of them. Do you hold a more middle ground position.

I don't see that the current style of presenting options for a unit in the codex as restricting. The options are nearly identical to what they used to be. But the way its done now, much of the confusion that accompanied the old 'Armory' system is dispelled. The only options your unit has are those in its entry, no more FAQ entries to answer the question "Are you sure Unit X can't take Option Y?"

The Orange
08-08-2010, 18:01
Yes I see and know what you mean. I have to bring up the point though that even when we had a plethora of options "usually" very few were used because all gamers tried to max/min, etc. Sure once in a while some one would jazz up the game by adding that not so often used option for a squad (like EMP grenades on Fire Warriors) but for the most part most people continue to take the bog standard "get the most for your money" options. When it was optional how many people constantly bought frag and krak grenades for their Marines? Not many I bet. Now that their standard/free on marines don't they give Marines a little more flexibility in their role on the battlefield?

That's sort of what I like about Warmachine/Hordes (which I didn't expect when I started the game), there's rarely options to change a unit so instead of thinking of how I can get the most bang for my buck I only think about what I want to do and which unit will do that for me. On the other hand when I play Tau my Firewarriors have a decent amount of options, however the majority of those options usually never get used by players. EMP grenades? there not supposed to be running at tanks, Photon Grenades? there not supposed to get into hth and there pretty much dead if they do so might as well let them die quickly, Pulse Carbines? doesn't stack up to the Pulse Rifle, bonding Knife? bah who cares about LD in 40k. These are all things that enhance/change the role of the unit and add more character yet for the most part you won't ever see anyone use them because most people see it ultimately as a waste of points. So unfortunately, the way I see it, the 40k may have had more options before but it's sort of an illusion because the options weren't worth taking. Like you may have the option of equipping a model with both a power weapon and powerfist, or 2 different pistols, but who would do that?

Malice313
08-08-2010, 18:11
I don't see that the current style of presenting options for a unit in the codex as restricting. The options are nearly identical to what they used to be. But the way its done now, much of the confusion that accompanied the old 'Armory' system is dispelled. The only options your unit has are those in its entry, no more FAQ entries to answer the question "Are you sure Unit X can't take Option Y?"

I like the new box system for that exact reason.

It has returned very much to the original format of RT list in that regard, though the options in each box were vast!!!

A basic Tactical Marine Squad could be given 70 upgrades from its box including Jump Packs.

The first Armoury was seen for the first Imperial Guard Army list, and this was in addition to the box text.

I think the Hero box text is also good, though quiet limiting when compared to other editions. It seems that Special Character (the true rpg type stuff) is a way of paying lip service to the specialised units of old.

sigur
08-08-2010, 18:21
Warcraft III set all kinds of crazy sales-records in its time.

And even if it had not, what makes you think that particular change over Warcraft 2 is the cause of less sales over other changes (new graphics, new factions, new units, etc.., etc..,etc.. )

Don't compare it to some computer game. Whole different thing, especially with Warcraft.

Without going into details here, because that won't help anyone, Warhammer and 40k clearly have their roots in pen&paper roleplaying games and never got rid of that completly. And for a discussion such as this, we'd need to talk about RPGs first and establish that RPGs don't build up on stats, levelling and especially not on individual special rules.

AndrewGPaul
08-08-2010, 23:14
I like the new box system for that exact reason.

It has returned very much to the original format of RT list in that regard, though the options in each box were vast!!!

A basic Tactical Marine Squad could be given 70 upgrades from its box including Jump Packs.

Do you mean the entry for Space Marine squads in the actual RT rulebook, or the Tactical Squad entry in the Space Marine army list in the Compendium? The entry in the rulebook wasn't for a "Tactical Squad", it was for any kind of Marine squad - a variable number of heavy and/or special weapons were allowed. The first proper army list was very similar to the current Codex entry. A basic squad was 10 guys with flamer and missile launcher, and you had options for: swapping the special weapons, giving the sergeant close combat weapons and buying special grenades and missiles.

noobzor
09-08-2010, 00:32
I liked it better when I could give my veteran sarge a bolter and meltabombs- it made every squad a little more unique. Of course, the old Last Chancers did that extremely well.

I think it is easier to have all the options in one area, but it seems that the options available to each unit have dramatically decreased in most codexes.

Malice313
09-08-2010, 02:14
Do you mean the entry for Space Marine squads in the actual RT rulebook, or the Tactical Squad entry in the Space Marine army list in the Compendium? The entry in the rulebook wasn't for a "Tactical Squad"

The one in the Compendium. The Space Marine squad in RT had no "tactical" designation.

mrln68
09-08-2010, 03:59
I don't see that the current style of presenting options for a unit in the codex as restricting. The options are nearly identical to what they used to be. But the way its done now, much of the confusion that accompanied the old 'Armory' system is dispelled. The only options your unit has are those in its entry, no more FAQ entries to answer the question "Are you sure Unit X can't take Option Y?"

I build fluffy armies - and I assure you, the vast majority of options that existed at the high point of customization (3rd/Early 4th Edition IMO) are no longer around.

All of my Imperial armies were at one time centered around my Ordo Malleus Inquisitor Lord. An IG army which was used for recruiting both acolytes and members of a somewhat allied SM chapter.

While it is true - I can still say the background still works...but before I could equip them that way and have the background info match.

lanrak
09-08-2010, 13:28
HI all.
As the original game (RT) was a detailed skirmish game, with very few minatures .(An army with 40+ minatures was concidered a hoard!)

As GW have upped the model count (in an attempt to sell more minatures.)

Then the level of detail and options has to be reduced to allow games to be finished before the gamers loose interest.:D

So the increase in model count and decrease in target demoghrapic age, has resulted in 40k moving from RPG skirmish (up to squad level)to a battle game (platoon to company level).

IF GW had moved from model to unit centric rules, there would be room for more detailed unit interaction and options.

TTFN

Malice313
09-08-2010, 14:54
Then the level of detail and options has to be reduced to allow games to be finished before the gamers loose interest.:D

I'm glad you put the laughing face at the end. I've played games that have taken 3 days for 9 guys to finish it.

...but that's 2nd ed for you.:angel:

Personally I think that even at the increased size there is still room for that level of detail though.

Its not like watching those guys who love colouring in dots on the 20 Mech data sheets in big Mech-Warrior battles.

AndrewGPaul
09-08-2010, 15:58
The one in the Compendium. The Space Marine squad in RT had no "tactical" designation.

Then I'm confused. Like I said, the squads in that list were actually rather tightly controlled. Characters could have all sorts of euquipment, but not squads. Certainly there's no way of giving a Tactical Squad jump packs.

Bunnahabhain
09-08-2010, 16:06
40k has been slowly losing more and more of the RPGish elements present in the early editions.

Personally, I think it should go all the way. In an environment with current model counts, it is daft to try and have a RPGish game. A fully unit based game, with streamlined rules to reflect this, can be just as characterful as the mess it currently is, but have much more tactical depth, and play better.

Easy E
09-08-2010, 20:23
I am for whatever let's me tell the story my opponenet and I want to tell.

Malice313
10-08-2010, 03:57
Certainly there's no way of giving a Tactical Squad jump packs.

Compendium page 134, Tactical Squads, Equip All Squad With:, first option is Jump Packs for 20 points.


Personally, I think it should go all the way. In an environment with current model counts, it is daft to try and have a RPGish game. A fully unit based game, with streamlined rules to reflect this, can be just as characterful as the mess it currently is, but have much more tactical depth, and play better.

I don't see that the current model count is that much of an obstacle to the use of skills and equipment on a wide scale.

Maybe if the model counts start to increase it might be a problem... but that's what Epic is for.

...and why not have different game for different play styles. Kill Team was a great way to introduce beginners to the game and was fun to build up a specialist team of converted high tech killers.

It was a shame to see it dropped from the core rules (and even more of a shame to have it replaced with a bland hobby section). I was very surprised to see it make a come back in the Battle Missions.

Perhaps one of the reasons for the "mess" is that 40K is trying to be Kill team and Epic in the same rule system? If so you would prefer to see it pushed towards Epic?

lanrak
10-08-2010, 10:42
Hi Malice313.
Current 40k is a skirmish game hatcheted and patched up in a messy way to arrive at a semi- simulation battle game though abstract and counter intuitive rules....

40k has 2 diametricaly opposed directive forcing the developers to make massive comprimises in game play.

'...for game play reasons ,40k is now focused on unit interactions...' a good assement from the developers themselves,(Alessio, Rick ,Gav,et all, have said this 'on the record' on various ocassions...)

However corperate managment want to game developers to inspire people to buy 'models' .And they belive a model focused rule set is the only way to achive this.

As there are loads of FREE skirmish rules available , No Limits ,Stargrunt,Chain Reaction, fast And Dirty, etc.

How are GW going to convince gamers to buy thier skirmish game when there are so many FREE alternatives?

A re-write of 40k to focus on DETAILED UNIT interaction would allow far more detail without slowing down the game play.

So the same amount of detail as 2nd ed , but applied in a SENSIBLE way at the UNIT level.

TTFN

Malice313
10-08-2010, 15:31
Current 40k is a skirmish game hatcheted and patched up in a messy way to arrive at a semi- simulation battle game though abstract and counter intuitive rules....

To be fair the situation has to be abstracted as it is not a real time simulation. I'm not so sure its counter intuitive, but then I've been playing it for so long, I don't think I could be objective enough.


As there are loads of FREE skirmish rules available , No Limits ,Stargrunt,Chain Reaction, fast And Dirty, etc.

How are GW going to convince gamers to buy thier skirmish game when there are so many FREE alternatives?

There is no lack of skirmish games its true. I for one really enjoy Nick Lunds Kill Zone and really like Mark Copplestones supporting Future Warriors miniatures range.

Skirmish style is what initially drew me to the game. Warfare with massively destructive weapons has lead to a skirmish style of warfare.

I never really got into WFB as it never seemed to play out the sort of battles involving the thousands of men I've read about in history.

As I could not afford such a huge force as a teenager (and would probably still be painting these past few decades it if I could). I never lived in a house big enough to have the acres of table top needed to field it either.

So 40k seemed like an interesting and feasible alternative. To play games on a massive scale there was 40k in Epic scale and to play out the room clearing of boarding actions and fortresses there was Advanced Space Crusade.

It seems though that 40k is trying to be what GURPS was to roleplaying; a system that tries to be many things and doesn't do any of them as well as the separate systems it tries to incorporate.

Of course the whole specialist games thing gets back to the business model thing you spoke of earlier.

The thing is though, at this point there is no other company that can even compare their miniature range to GW's. I think that this alone is what makes Warhammer in its various incarnations that benchmark in the industry.