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ftayl5
07-06-2012, 12:03
This is something I've been thinking about for a while and have wanted to discuss on here and that something is: the gripping fear of cannons.
People don't bring singular monsters or characters on monsters because they're "cannon-bait" or "asking for a cannon-ball to the face."
For a while, this has really confused me. Beastmen, Bretonnia, Daemons, Elves, Lizardmen, Orcs and Vampires don't have cannons. These armies might have catapults or trebuchets or bolt throwers instead but really, while the Trebuchet is a great option I haven't seen someone use a rock-lobber in almost two years and it's common knowledge the elven bolt throwers are both over costed and unreliable.

Dwarfs, Ogres and Empire are the only race that have cannons. Out of 15 armies! That's 1/5. This is very meta-based I suppose, maybe where you come from everyone and their aunt plays Dwarfs.
As well as there, arguably, only being a 1/5 chance of you even fighting an army with access to a cannon, cannons misfire 1/6th of the time. Not only can this lead to self-destruction or not firing again for a few turns, but the shot itself ends.
Cannons also bounce and unless the target is 10" long you can miss with a cannon and again 1/6 times the ball gets stuck in the mud.
So now we have a 2/6 = 1/3 chance that the cannon will not even hit the target.
Furthermore, the roll of a 1 is always a fail to wound making another 1/6 chance that the cannon will do nothing.
=1/2 chance of doing nothing.
Mathematically, out of 2 cannon shots only 1 will actually get to the point where your monster makes saves.

Combined with the fact that combat generally starts at turn 2 (at the latest) of the second player - a cannon may only get 1 or perhaps 2 shots at your monster before it's in combat and unable to be shot. And if you're smart in deployment you can keep it completely away from cannons between either distance or terrain.

I realise that this still presents a possibility of your monster being killed instantly but it annoys me sometimes when people pass it off as something that will definitely happen.
So please do discuss this, for I quite passionately believe that cannons aren't actually all that scary and would love to hear what other people think.

hazmiter
07-06-2012, 12:17
Cannons are scary when the dwarf player you vs is a nasty so an so who never misfired a cannon in a game, and guesses range very well. Added to that, doom divers are far more terrifying.

Memnos
07-06-2012, 12:30
I take monsters. The key is to take multiple threats. If you take a Lord of Chaos on a Chaos Dragon and a Chaos Spawn, followed by hordes of Marauders of Khorne and 3+ ward save Chosen, you are guaranteed that your Dragon is gonna get shot by anything and everything because there's too many marauders to make a difference and the Chosen will just save. On the other hand, if you take a Beastlord on a Razorgor chariot, a flying Gorebull and a Ghorgon along with a bunch of mini units of Razorgor, that cannon will spontaneously combust in fear as it realizes it can't stop anything.

Plus, the Beastmen army will close to the cannon in a single turn. Better hope it doesn't misfire. Or fail to wound. Or fail to roll high enough wounds to take out the enemy. Or roll less than a 4+ when the enemy drops out the Chalice and makes it useless.

Basically, breaking out the cannons to a well prepared Beastmen player is akin to starting a sex riot. You knew what you did when you did it and you can't blame others for the consequences.

Plus, I guess other armies can do multi-threat. Beastmen just rock at it.

hazmiter
07-06-2012, 12:38
Harpies,darkriders, manticores, dark Pegasus, shades, assassins, dagger sorceress.......

boli
07-06-2012, 12:46
Skaven also have cannons (warp lightning ones :P)

Its not so much the miss-firing people are concerned about... just that a 90, 100 or 150 point item has something like a 30% chance of killing a 500 point lord on a dragon every turn which annoys people most of all.

I don't know the exact percentage of a cannon hitting and wounding a target on a 2+ but it is pretty high - if your opponant brings 2 or 3 cannons which cost about the same as a single monster but they themselves can potentially kill 1 monster a turn between them with ease before yours even gets close.... well that's what causes terror.

tmarichards
07-06-2012, 12:57
It's not just that the monster-killing aspect that annoys people. For example, I despise the dumb mechanic that allows cannon players to repeatedly put their cannonball '10" from the back of your general's base' over and over again, just looking for that failed LOS. Not good for the game at all.

IcedCrow
07-06-2012, 12:59
30% is grossly high.

First assuming you follow internetz wizdomz you guess 6" short of the target, that leaves you a 2/6 chance of landing straight on target (a 6 or an 8) and a 2/6 chance of it having no chance (a misfire or a 10) and then a 2/6 chance of it landing short. So right off the bat you have a 33% chance of total failure on the shot.

Assuming it lands short, you then will roll what you need to bounce through 4/6.

Then you have a 5/6 chance of wounding.

Then you need to max your wounds out to "kill the 500 point lord on a dragon" on the first shot which is t ypically going to be a 1/6 chance.

The odds of one shotting a lord on a dragon is very small. The thing is people on the internet claiming internetz wizdomz take an unlikely possibility and then hyperbole it up so that it happens nearly all the time. This of course then contributes to things never being seen on the table and contributing to unit spam.

Here's my own anecdotal evidence. I regularly run a chaos lord on a manticore. Last year he played in 19 games. He died in two of them. One of those was to a cannon. The other was to bad rolls in combat. This is against a group that featured three empire players and many cannons and guns.

There are many ways to mitigate cannon balls. Being out of line of sight is one. Behing behind a wall is another. As a flying creature, I use him as a support piece, not as an "I will slaughter your army" piece. He is there to eat warmachines and straggler wizards and light infantry / gunlines. The bulk of my army takes care of dealing with the mainline pieces. As a flying creature often my opponent has exactly one turn to kill my lord on manticore before he is charged and destroyed and the rear of his lines have to deal with a marauding chaos lord on a manticore.

Works for me.

hazmiter
07-06-2012, 13:03
Manticores are a blast, dragon..... Have yet to field one.

IcedCrow
07-06-2012, 13:09
The same principles apply to a dragon though as they do to a manticore (dealing with the "you never see fighty lords on monsters anymore because a cannon will just one shot it in the face so there's no reason to take it" mantra). The only reason I don't field a dragon is because in a 2000 - 2250 point game, a chaos lord and a dragon don't really fit. They are more for the 3000 and above games which I don't play much of.

Askari
07-06-2012, 13:13
As well as there, arguably, only being a 1/5 chance of you even fighting an army with access to a cannon, cannons misfire 1/6th of the time. Not only can this lead to self-destruction or not firing again for a few turns, but the shot itself ends.
Cannons also bounce and unless the target is 10" long you can miss with a cannon and again 1/6 times the ball gets stuck in the mud.
So now we have a 2/6 = 1/3 chance that the cannon will not even hit the target.
Furthermore, the roll of a 1 is always a fail to wound making another 1/6 chance that the cannon will do nothing.


And if the Monster has 4 wounds that's another 3/6 chance that the Cannon won't do enough wounds to kill it! Therefore altogether a Cannon has 6/6 chance to not kill a 4 wound Monster!

Or that's not how you figure out the chances of a Cannon hitting you...

But, much as that is wrong, the chances a Cannon kills outright a 6 wound monster turn 1 is indeed pretty low (12% IIRC) and doesn't top 40% even for a 4 wound monster (~37%). It's just that Cannons are cheap, and that chance is still far higher than other means of dispatching that monster, such as fighting it in combat or shooting it with Crossbows. There's usually ways to improve those odds, Dwarfs have Rune of Forging and the Ironblaster bounces better but it's still not as bad as people make it out to be.

What's really scary about those odds is that I routinely field Cannons to take out Hydras and Hell Pit Abominations... they only cost roughly as much as 2 Cannons, things don't look good for the Empire artillery...

Sotek
07-06-2012, 13:29
Aside from the damage potential I think it's the 'snipeability' of cannons which is cheesy.

BlackPawl
07-06-2012, 13:36
It's not "one cannon against one monster" but "two or more cannons against one monster" - so the chances are better to kill a big monster with general in turn one and get all the points. And after doing this the cannons can shoot other targets in the next few rounds, even if they get killed by the end of the game they have done their job.

Even if they do not kill something in the first round you have to protect your monster behind some walls / buildings / hills but a) you can not reley on it that you will have such protection on the battlefield when you write our list and b) sometimes you have to go a longer way around and out of the LOS from every cannon, so you can not go straight forward.

And also if we assume that the cannons did not kill the monster in the first turn, even if they do only 3 or 4 wounds and have only 1 or 2 wounds left you will be more carfully to choose the right battle because even a steadfast horde of slave / goblins / zombies can do one or two wounds (with a little luck) and kill your monster.

Rake
07-06-2012, 13:41
Personally I think you are missing the main problem. That the cannon hits both the rider and the monster. And even with 4+ wardsave, or 3+ in case of chaos, its still a free shot at taking out the general of the army for FREE along with a chance at the dragon or assorted big gribbly. A lot of people identify with these large center pieces and don't like to simply remove them from the table turn one after they agonizeed/fantazised over the role they would play int he battle. Other than that, the odds are not so bad for the gribblys, but remember that knocking 3-4 wounds of a monster means it dies in the first round of combat most of the time, basically rendering it useless.

Stavros

Askari
07-06-2012, 13:43
And also if we assume that the cannons did not kill the monster in the first turn, even if they do only 3 or 4 wounds and have only 1 or 2 wounds left you will be more carfully to choose the right battle because even a steadfast horde of slave / goblins / zombies can do one or two wounds (with a little luck) and kill your monster.

If my big unit of Grave Guard with Vampire Lord in it and get a direct hit from a Grudge Thrower, I have to be careful to choose the right battle with them also. I don't think that's a point against the Cannons.

I simply think that ridden monsters are too expensive and/or both rider and mount shouldn't be struck by the same cannonball, it should be randomized. Other monsters, such as Hydras, Abominations, Warsphinxes, Hierotitans, Arachnarok Spiders, Terrorgheists and Varghulfs get used plenty as they're a) cheap enough for their use and b) you don't lose two expensive models when struck by one shot.

yabbadabba
07-06-2012, 13:46
@OP - its the internet. You take Math Hammer, pretend its reality, choose a worst case scenario then moan about it. Before you know its gospel and Chicken Licken is carrying your banner.

CmdrLaw
07-06-2012, 14:13
Yup the entire problem is it hitting the Monster and Rider.

I have lost dozens of Plaguepriests on Plague furnaces to Cannons.

A stone thrower only hits the rider on a 5+ so why should a cannon hit both?

Akkaryn
07-06-2012, 14:13
I have tried both a lord on the manticore and an araknarok spider. Against empire and ogres they died before I had a turn. Against high elves they did ok but nothing spectacular.

As most of the time I play a random army I am unwilling to spend a good chunk of points on something that against some armies I have a good chance of not being able to do anything with them. I just dont see the point.

I would love to use my lord on a manticore every game but until they reduce the points significantly so it isn't a quarter of my army or improve their chances of surviving (because even if they don't die to cannons and just lose a few wounds that reduces the options they can take on the field.) I will continue to not bother.

IcedCrow
07-06-2012, 14:35
I think the problem is people are looking for something that is 100% effective and if its not they abandon it.

To each their own.

As I said I've used it in many games (19) against opponents that field multiple cannons and it died twice (once to a cannon) despite being shot at by all of them. It's not as common as people make it out to be (monster mounts and riders dying in turn 1). It's possible. It's certainly not uber rare, but it's not common unless your monster is sitting out in the open.

GodlessM
07-06-2012, 15:35
I have a problem with the thread since a lot of it is based on the incredibly false assumption that nobod brings stone throwers.

Jericho
07-06-2012, 15:46
Yup the entire problem is it hitting the Monster and Rider.

I have lost dozens of Plaguepriests on Plague furnaces to Cannons.

A stone thrower only hits the rider on a 5+ so why should a cannon hit both?

Stone throwers do hit both, but only one counts as "under the hole". Cannons have no secondary stat for "glancing blows".

russellmoo
07-06-2012, 15:52
The reason people fear cannons is more psychological than the actual in game effect of a cannon. The possibility that the centerpiece or general of your army- sometimes the only named model in the army- might die without any chance to kill anything, or retaliate in any way makes players over react to the threat of cannons. However, it should also be noted that 2 runed up dwarf cannons will most likely kill any large monster on the table in 2 turns or less.

The same psychology applies to the big magic spells, which kill models and units without a player being able to do anything about it- such as Pit of Shades being cast by Teclis on your warmachines (meaning he gets IF, you don't get to dispel, and your warmachines are simply removed from the table) GW does need to take a look at some of these in game mechanics as any time a player has to remove a model with no chance of a saving throw, or without it being able to fight back, tends to make the game less fun-

The reason the latest edition of 40k is doing so well and is so fun to play is that generally- with a few exceptions- you get a saving throw (even if it is just a 6+ from going to ground) Having that tiny chance of saving a model from certain death makes the game much more fun and interesting.

Sorry if this post went a little off topic- the point is that cannon sniping makes players feel helpless, and that feeling of helplessness makes players steer clear of large ridden monsters, regardless of the actual threat, only the potential threat matters.

CmdrLaw
07-06-2012, 16:35
Stone throwers do hit both, but only one counts as "under the hole". Cannons have no secondary stat for "glancing blows".

good point, although the under the hole hit is the one we actually care about.

Baluc
07-06-2012, 16:42
The reason people fear cannons is more psychological than the actual in game effect of a cannon. The possibility that the centerpiece or general of your army- sometimes the only named model in the army- might die without any chance to kill anything, or retaliate in any way makes players over react to the threat of cannons. However, it should also be noted that 2 runed up dwarf cannons will most likely kill any large monster on the table in 2 turns or less.

The same psychology applies to the big magic spells, which kill models and units without a player being able to do anything about it- such as Pit of Shades being cast by Teclis on your warmachines (meaning he gets IF, you don't get to dispel, and your warmachines are simply removed from the table) GW does need to take a look at some of these in game mechanics as any time a player has to remove a model with no chance of a saving throw, or without it being able to fight back, tends to make the game less fun-

The reason the latest edition of 40k is doing so well and is so fun to play is that generally- with a few exceptions- you get a saving throw (even if it is just a 6+ from going to ground) Having that tiny chance of saving a model from certain death makes the game much more fun and interesting.

Sorry if this post went a little off topic- the point is that cannon sniping makes players feel helpless, and that feeling of helplessness makes players steer clear of large ridden monsters, regardless of the actual threat, only the potential threat matters.

I disagree with the premise that 40k is fun.

yabbadabba
07-06-2012, 16:53
I disagree with the premise that 40k is fun. Good for you, unfortunately it appears the numbers are against you.

Personally I think some players aren't capable of fun with 40K. After all you can have fun with almost anything.

boli
07-06-2012, 17:03
Firing a cannon at 10" from the back of the general's base:

1/6 chance of a misfire from the start The other rolls are:

2+m, 4+m, 6+m, 8+m, 10+m
2+2, 2+4, 2+6, 2+8, 2+10
4+2, 4+4, 4+6, 4+8, 4+10
6+2, 6+4, 6+6, 6+8, 6+10
8+2, 8+4, 8+6, 8+8, 8+10
10+2, 10+4, 10+6, 10+8, 10+10

out of the 30 remaining possible combinations: 9 will miss, 21 will hit.

16.6% chance of missfiring
58.3% chance of hitting the mob
48.6% chance of hitting and wounding (on a 2+)

So for every 4 cannon shots at a target you will do on average of 7 wounds depending on ward/regen saves.

A High Elf General on a Star dragon is 520 points without any additional equipment; for the same price you could afford 5 cannons in an empire army. (unless price has changed from 100 points). In the internet world of mathhammer you'll be simply handing over free VPs for zero benefit as the general "didn't make his points up".

I'm not saying this line of thought is wrong but it terrifies everyone out of their mind when they drool over the army list monster mount section. Sure there are many times when this general on a dragon rips through your enemies lines and turns the tide... but there are also times where he is dead even before you get to move him. That fear has a large portion of your points running around behind buildings hidding from the enemy which he should be engaging; in essance the cannon has won even before they attempt to shoot.

decker_cky
07-06-2012, 17:05
Monster riders aren't very good whether you're facing cannons or not. Cannons hitting both the rider and the mount makes it incredibly dangerous to put your general on a monster mount, meaning it's a high risk, low reward option. Cannons push it over the edge, and they can be dealt with, but those options aren't worth it whether there's a 3 cannons on the other side or not.

IcedCrow
07-06-2012, 18:17
I will never ever understand that line of thinking. Oh well.

bigbear bailey
07-06-2012, 18:18
last time I saw a post like this a skaven avatared person came on and said "thank you for keeping the under empires secrets secret"

The fact is that cannons are not the end all be all of big nasties. A lot of people have things that are good at doing wounds to big nasties, so thus the hate on monsters!

yabbadabba
07-06-2012, 18:30
What people have issues with is the change to the rider/monster rules and TLOS, but they are in denial and it is easier to blame the cannon.

I don't not blame remove guessing because it is a skill easily gained by the vast majority.

Randomise the cannon hits, and declare scenery to block TLOS (rather than go to the expense of making it so it blocks TLOS) and the game dynamic changes massively.

Soundwave
07-06-2012, 18:53
Cannons are far worse now (for the opponent) in 7th ed it was treated similar to that of a single shot bolt 5-6 the rider, 4 below the mount,now it is classed as a template weapon and hits all (both rider and mount) underneath its little 2/10 line of death and hits every model underneath that line rider,mount chariot and character alike that may not share a profile.Also from the 3 major sources of cannon fire given on the quote d6 wounds now applies to all,That is why cannon fire causes terror!

Naanomi
07-06-2012, 20:29
Part of the problem is that, for their points, most Monsters are not fantastic to begin with. It isn't necessarily the case that no one takes them ONLY because Cannons obliterate them readily (as well as many spells and massed archery, but those are more counterable in an active sense); but more the case that they are not an optimal choice in most cases anyways, and their vulnerability to some removal techniques (including most prominently cannons) pushes them 'over the edge' from non-optimal to non-competitive

Gradek
07-06-2012, 20:43
Step up, steadfast, and striking in initiative order have done far more to remove ridden monsters from the game than any change to the cannon rules. It simply is no longer worth it to tie up that many points with your lord choice.

xxRavenxx
07-06-2012, 21:14
I have a problem with the thread since a lot of it is based on the incredibly false assumption that nobod brings stone throwers.

I wondered this too.

The problem with monsters isn't cannons, its anything which does D6 wounds, wounding on a 2+, no saves. Cannons/stone throwers/whatever chew through MCs. The reason you don't see MCs as often is that a) they often need to be ridden, which means its 400 odd points of payoff for slugging them with something heavy and round. and b) all but the most fearsome (hellpit, hydra, stonehorn) will just go down.

Brets, empire, chaos, orcs and dwarves are all likely to have a warmachine. Barring terrible luck the warmachine will defeat your dragon. So why bother adding him when you know what could be lurking round the next corner?


And to close my argument as to why not: The beastmen MCs are terrible. By bringing your own MC, you're giving them a chance to do something by hitting him with a rock. Shame on you! Stop getting the beastmen's hopes up! :(

Feefait
07-06-2012, 21:31
GW seems to be having a hard time balancing between Monsters Rule and Cannons Rule. This whole edition has kind of hurt monsters, but they are far from useless. I am not afraid to take them. ok maybe the Beastman monsters at current points values, but we play them at 175. The issue is the cannon almost always makes back its points values, often in 1 shot, especially if it takes out a monster.

In my last game I played LM versus Ogres. I brought a lord on a carnosaur and a basilisk (from FW). The basilisk got shot twice and died. It was a massive point slost, but it kept my general alive and got him into combat. Him and the carnosaur promptly whiffed all attacks against a stonetusk, broke and got run down, but that had nothing to do with the cannon. :) I worry about taking 1 monster and not being able to eliminate the cannon before it gets me, but I am not going to NOT take one ever just on the chance of seeing a cannon. You can also say that the opponent takes cannons because they are afraid of monsters wrecking them, so it's that whole vicious cycle thing.

ftayl5
07-06-2012, 23:21
for the same price you could afford 5 cannons in an empire army

Yes and when a player turns up to a game with 5 cannons they're going to die horribly against any list that doesn't run a monster.


I have a problem with the thread since a lot of it is based on the incredibly false assumption that nobod brings stone throwers.

I didn't involve them in my OP because it was late, I was way to tired to actually try and figure out the chance of a stone thrower templates 'hole' hitting something and because in my meta at least, no-one brings stone throwers except Bretonnian Trebuchets.


Skaven also have cannons (warp lightning ones :P)
I know... *looks at avatar*
Lightning Cannons are even worse because they aren't always strength 10 so they're even less dangerous than normal cannons.

Antipathy
08-06-2012, 01:59
I'm not sure that killing a good 25 models a turn for 2-3 turns is that bad an investment considering most 3k armies I've seen. It's when they throw the Frenzied Stubborn Heaven Altar with an Amber Wizard Lord next to the Halberdier Horde, with a couple of Engineers on Helblasters, TGM with Runesword and TOTS in a stubborn ITP Reiksguard missile backed by a unit of Demigryphs that it becomes fairly scary. At 3k that is not only viable but fairly good against all comers. Only skaven can really bog them down all that much and with enough counter fire and throw away hunting units, the screaming bell, warp cannons and other shooters won't last that long.As for Monsters, The Twilight Sisters do well, but then again they can just keep autohealing or coming back to life. And unlike the BRB, they shots are still randomised between the rider (and again, between themselves) and dragon. On the other hand, that is 645points and special character territory. As for another monster that is decent, it is Galrauch, he doesn't have a rider, has a small ward save, and enough wounds to survive possibly 2 cannonballs. But again, he is territory for 3K points and again is SC.For the average dragon rider, youve got a highly visible target, that at best has around a 50/50 chance of surviving such shots, That not only loses you a lovely centrepiece model, but the reason for the army (it is not a throwaway unit you've taken like a 60pt fast cav unit, it is a potentially 760 point model, that requires you to forgo other options, occasionaly specific lores, a powerful spellcaster, more options to use elsewhere, and in particular opens you up to even more pain from armies that can afford to spend an extra 300 points on taking 4 cannons instead of 1 and see either a return in a fiscal manner or just plain deterrent), you also lose your general (usually), reducing your armies ability in a 36" bubble by on occasion up to 3 entire points (or a roughly 25% swing), you've lost potentially your best fighter, or caster, and the foundations that you've built the army around.It can lead to recklessness, silly oversights, and an attempt to try and fill gaps that sees you playing a 2250 versus 3000. Which can only end badly that early.As to how to use them? Sisters of Twilight is my favourite (although I use eagle to use them at their best, and they have shooting as well as magical charges). Combining delaying tactics with their paralyze and stone thrower shots can see them outmaneuvre and combined charge to victory (With a stubborn wild rider great stag and wild rider 'hammer').Chaos Paragon of Teentch can go someway decent with a 1+/3++ Lord who can come back to life (Paragon, Mark of Tzeentch, Pinion of The Phoenix, Enchanted Shield, Favour of the Gods) with 3 breath weapons and the ability to hurt anything which manages to wound him. However this is one of those 750 point combination ones.

Gaargod
08-06-2012, 01:59
for the same price you could afford 5 cannons in an empire army

Yes and when a player turns up to a game with 5 cannons they're going to die horribly against any list that doesn't run a monster.



Well obviously, it's an over-exaggeration. People don't take 5 cannons (indeed, can't sub-3k). They take 2, or maybe 3. Those 2 cannons will ruin the day of any monster going.


Someone pointed out that cannons weren't really the problem, stepping up + steadfast is. This is entirely true - Personally, I think it's quite appropriate that if my carnosaur flank charges your infantry regiment, he should get to eat them and they should run the hell away, but whatever. It does indeed make it problematical for monsters.
It would not however be the end of the world. Most monsters have huge damage potential - just watch a hellpit hit a unit and turn it into chowder over a few turns. Lords on monsters do it even better then, theoretically.

The problem is exacerbated by cannons. It isn't even that you'll outright kill my monsters, but you've amazing odds of reducing them to one or two wounds. This means most infantry should be able to kill them before the monster can really make an impact on the game. This isn't necessarily a problem as such, but it still makes monsters an unappealing choice at the highest levels of gaming.

There isn't a "1/5 chance of playing cannons". I'd think you've much better odds of seeing Empire or Ogre Kingdoms at a tournament than you do Wood Elves, for example. Even if it is that bad - consider that at tournaments, you're playing 3+ games. That gives you really quite reasonable odds of playing cannons at some stage. At a big tournament with 5 games, it's about a 32% chance (assuming 1/5 odds) of not seeing any cannons at all - that is not good odds when you're trying to write a list! The point is that cannons are a very hard counter to monster-riding lords, where unless you're very lucky, your big expensive general will go poof before he can do much.
Even with target heavy armies (the aforementioned beastmen one), those cannons will still happily earn their points back, probably a couple of times over. And probably have a much bigger impact on the game then that - you'll desperately have to kill/hide from them in order not to be cannon fodder.

Cannons are silly.

IcedCrow
08-06-2012, 02:10
It would seem some people expect ridden monsters to be able to break mainline units by themselves and the fact that they cant is why ridden monsters aren't taken.

I don't think I'd want a game where ridden monsters can single handedly take on main infantry units. That would remind me too much of 5th edition...

Jezbot
08-06-2012, 03:31
In addition to cannons being more effective against ridden monsters, other changes worked to make monsters less effective - namely step up and steadfast. In previous editions monsters that reached combat were very likely to break enemy units, and because they almost always went first and killed a load of troops, they suffered few attacks in response. From there, they were likely to break the enemy unit very quickly through combat resolution. In 8th ed grunt units will have steadfast, so they are likely to hold firm in the face of heavy casualties from a lone monster, and thanks to step up they're capable of inflicting some wounds back.

The increased effectiveness of cannons are a factor, but they're not the only factor.



First assuming you follow internetz wizdomz you guess 6" short of the target, that leaves you a 2/6 chance of landing straight on target (a 6 or an 8) and a 2/6 chance of it having no chance (a misfire or a 10) and then a 2/6 chance of it landing short. So right off the bat you have a 33% chance of total failure on the shot.

Assuming it lands short, you then will roll what you need to bounce through 4/6.

Then you have a 5/6 chance of wounding.

Then you need to max your wounds out to "kill the 500 point lord on a dragon" on the first shot which is t ypically going to be a 1/6 chance.

Your maths are a bit off. First up, you should go 10" from the back corner of the base (the angle then makes sure there's a 2" spread across the model). But the more important part is 10" back, as then you've still got two rolls on the first die where you're hitting 100% of the time, but it means lower rolls still have a chance to hit, whereas in your example a 10" shot misses entirely. The effect of this is to move from a 58% chance to hit in your example, to 67% if you place the shot 10" from the corner of the monster farthest from the cannon.

But I do agree that the effectiveness of cannons are overstated on the internet, as a hit doesn't mean a kill. As you say you've still got to roll to wound, so that's another 16.7% chance of failure, and then you've got to inflict wounds, and with most monsters having 5 or more wounds the odds of rolling enough wounds is 1/3 at best. The effect of all of that is that a cannon has an 18.5% chance of inflicting five or more wounds on a creature.

That said, ripping 2, 3 or 4 wounds off a monster before it reaches combat makes killing the beast in combat much more likely, and so even if you dont' one shot it, you've often made a significant impact.

Jezbot
08-06-2012, 03:32
It would seem some people expect ridden monsters to be able to break mainline units by themselves and the fact that they cant is why ridden monsters aren't taken.

I don't think I'd want a game where ridden monsters can single handedly take on main infantry units. That would remind me too much of 5th edition...

Yeah, this is a really good point. Ridden monsters are now most useful as part of a combined arms approach, they provide the killing power while an infantry unit provides the rank bonus.

sknich
08-06-2012, 05:14
last time I saw a post like this a skaven avatared person came on and said "thank you for keeping the under empires secrets secret"

The fact is that cannons are not the end all be all of big nasties. A lot of people have things that are good at doing wounds to big nasties, so thus the hate on monsters!

You have been warned >:C

Lord Solar Plexus
08-06-2012, 07:39
Didn't we just have 42 pages on this subject?!?

ftayl5
08-06-2012, 08:00
Where? The 'fixing cannons' topic? Reading the first couple of pages it was not the same as this thread, it was about fixing cannons.
If it later begins covering the same topic as this thread then it has gone off topic.

anyone4tea?
08-06-2012, 08:12
@OP - its the internet. You take Math Hammer, pretend its reality, choose a worst case scenario then moan about it. Before you know its gospel and Chicken Licken is carrying your banner.

haha There's some truth there, people like to complain I think. It saves them getting angry about things that really matter, like the government, that might necessitate they act. Sitting around on gaming forums lambasting things of virtually no consequence is a fantastic catharsis for many a frustrated disempowered male.

Lord Solar Plexus
08-06-2012, 08:48
Where? The 'fixing cannons' topic? Reading the first couple of pages it was not the same as this thread, it was about fixing cannons.
If it later begins covering the same topic as this thread then it has gone off topic.

Heh, I've never seen a 42-page thread that didn't go OT sooner or later. Still, it did cover most of this. Fear of cannon is the basic premise for the perceived need to fix them, the math is the same, the monsters are the same, the opposing camps are the same...

ftayl5
08-06-2012, 09:25
You have a point haha

hazmiter
08-06-2012, 09:28
Flaming rune cannons are scary!!!!!
Tell that to dragon princes, they love it.

Antipathy
08-06-2012, 09:31
It would seem some people expect ridden monsters to be able to break mainline units by themselves and the fact that they cant is why ridden monsters aren't taken. I don't think I'd want a game where ridden monsters can single handedly take on main infantry units. That would remind me too much of 5th edition...So you expect 500-700 points to be able to kill an enemy battle line, provided its not one model but simply due to a quirk of a poorly drsigned combat resolution system the equivalent monster rider cannot? If they gave Flyers Hit and Run, or something that would not lock the monster in combat when clearly goblins etc could do nothing of the sort, they would be better as well. As it stands monster riders run too much risk to get there, and when they get there, unless they are babysat by a nanny horde of magically buffed infantry which could have done the same job without need of ridden monster, said monster is limited to eating support units, redirectors etc.

hazmiter
08-06-2012, 09:49
I don't know about that, I generally combo a manticore master w darkriders to good effect.
But then again I generally don't like sinking points into any one thing.

cptcosmic
08-06-2012, 10:19
Cannons are far worse now (for the opponent) in 7th ed it was treated similar to that of a single shot bolt 5-6 the rider, 4 below the mount,now it is classed as a template weapon and hits all (both rider and mount) underneath its little 2/10 line of death and hits every model underneath that line rider,mount chariot and character alike that may not share a profile.Also from the 3 major sources of cannon fire given on the quote d6 wounds now applies to all,That is why cannon fire causes terror!
this and template rules allow the cannon to bounce of hills and hit models behind it.


Yes and when a player turns up to a game with 5 cannons they're going to die horribly against any list that doesn't run a monster.
those 5 cannons will instead shoot at your general in any unit then. there is a good chance that you fail your LoS throw in 2 turns from 5 cannons.


It would seem some people expect ridden monsters to be able to break mainline units by themselves and the fact that they cant is why ridden monsters aren't taken.

I don't think I'd want a game where ridden monsters can single handedly take on main infantry units. That would remind me too much of 5th edition...
I dont see why a model costing over 600 points should not be able to beat something that is is only 3/5 of the price. what is the point of the ridden monster then when I still need a solid block of infantry to beat your 450 points unit because the monster does not have enough killing power to overcome the ranks? I might aswell take something cheaper like a unit of cavarly that advances to your flank or a even a chariot.

yabbadabba
08-06-2012, 10:37
this and template rules allow the cannon to bounce of hills and hit models behind it. This can happen if the ground is hard enough and the angle right. That is too complex for WFB rules mechanism to add and doesn't allign with GWs mega-killy-death approach to game play.

those 5 cannons will instead shoot at your general in any unit then. there is a good chance that you fail your LoS throw in 2 turns from 5 cannons.BSB. Get rid of the rerolls first.

I dont see why a model costing over 600 points should not be able to beat something that is is only 3/5 of the price. what is the point of the ridden monster then when I still need a solid block of infantry to beat your 450 points unit because the monster does not have enough killing power to overcome the ranks? I might aswell take something cheaper like a unit of cavarly that advances to your flank or a even a chariot. In 7e blocks of infantry were almost useless unless as a speed bump or they were top end elite. Now they do what they are supposed to do, tie units down and ground away at them. 7e was almost as guilty as 5e in having monster/character combos that were almost unbeatable to regular rank and file. All this does is stagnate the game.

While in 8e you might not be able to charge you monster singlehandedly into a block of infantry and win because of a quirk in the rule structure, Monsters of all sorts are devastating as support models, far more so than most cavalry and infantry units. As a gamer you know have the choice, missing in previous editions, of how much you want to invest in something that is a game changer if used right, and not a game ended if just used. Some of those choices are only going to be viable in bigger games, but others can be surprisingly effective.

Vipoid
08-06-2012, 10:51
I dont see why a model costing over 600 points should not be able to beat something that is is only 3/5 of the price. what is the point of the ridden monster then when I still need a solid block of infantry to beat your 450 points unit because the monster does not have enough killing power to overcome the ranks? I might aswell take something cheaper like a unit of cavarly that advances to your flank or a even a chariot.

Agreed.


With regard to the thread topic, I think that cannons shouldn't be able to hit both rider and monster. That rule basically means that any general on a ridden monster is just making himself into a bigger target.

Aside from that though, I think that the problem tends to lie with monsters, rather than with cannons. They tend to be very expensive, but rarely have any decent protection (ward/regenerate saves), and most don't even have good armour saves. Furthermore, if a monster charges a large unit of infantry with full command, it's already losing combat by 3. It needs to win combat by 4 on the first turn (because of the musician), and by 5 every round thereafter (since it no longer counts as charging). It just seems silly that when a monster charges a unit of basic men, it's already on the defensive, and said men can beat it without ever inflicting a wound.

Lord Solar Plexus
08-06-2012, 11:42
Silly based on what, Hollywood? Why would some film about a dragon set a precedent for Fantasy? Here it is just a bigger animal and will shy away from lots of sharp tips. And a Dragon or any creature with a breath weapon can easily cause 4-5 wounds.

First nerfing cannon and then nerfing infantry...what's next, nerfing monsters and restarting the cycle? Equipping monsters with a ward is a tricky proposition because you're so fast into HPA/Hydra territory it isn't funny. And we all know those two ARE taken regardless of cannon.

Vipoid
08-06-2012, 12:12
Silly based on what, Hollywood? Why would some film about a dragon set a precedent for Fantasy? Here it is just a bigger animal and will shy away from lots of sharp tips.

No, obviously dragons should all be totally crap and worthless against infantry blocks that cost half as much.


And a Dragon or any creature with a breath weapon can easily cause 4-5 wounds.

Yes, but can it cause 5 wounds every turn? Breath weapons are one use per game, so what happens after it's used it?

yabbadabba
08-06-2012, 12:13
Silly based on what, Hollywood? Why would some film about a dragon set a precedent for Fantasy? Here it is just a bigger animal and will shy away from lots of sharp tips. And a Dragon or any creature with a breath weapon can easily cause 4-5 wounds. I know its not quite the same but I got Transformation off on a Lvl 4 who had flank charged an Orc unit pinned to the front by Halberdiers. The Halberdiers on their own just won combat, but the wizard put it down to an unrerollable double one, and then by some as well.

In addition we need to be careful about strengths here. People are saying that the cannon is too effective at what it does, but this is its only positive attribute; when we compare the monster to the cannon at what it's good at, the Monster will eat hundreds of cannons if not more, and probably without breaking a sweat.

The cannon fulfills a very specific role outside of which it is useless, so its no wonder it is that good at that role. However the fault does not lie with the cannon but elsewhere.

hazmiter
08-06-2012, 12:19
Also fleeing artillary is dead. Ie reaper bolt throwers, cannons too, if they flee, they die.

Lord Solar Plexus
08-06-2012, 13:12
No, obviously dragons should all be totally crap and worthless against infantry blocks that cost half as much.


Come on, you know that Dragon was a stand-in for monster and an example of a ridden one. Most monsters do not cost double the points of infantry but about the same as a block of 40 State Troop-class models, which is around 250 points give or take, and a lot more when it comes to elites. Dragons could be a class of their own and be made a bit better, completely fine with me.

When there's even a small chance that your suggestion leads to every faction running amok with a couple of HPA equivalents, I say troll your boat gently down the usenet (in my most friendly voice of course). That's the Damocles sword.



Yes, but can it cause 5 wounds every turn? Breath weapons are one use per game, so what happens after it's used it?

It may well continue to hold its own and eat more soldiers each round, depending on its Ld or whether it is stubborn or unbreakable. I'm sure some monsters are one or the other. Losing by 1 isn't the end of the world, and perhaps it even has swiftstrider should it run so it's likely to escape.

IcedCrow
08-06-2012, 13:14
I guess our big disconnect is that I have never seen the game as a black and white representation of points vs points. I don't ever want a hero on a monster to be able to tear through an army by himself again. That was 5th edition. That was not an army battle game. That was a hero skirmish game. I want an army battle game.

So no... I don't want a hero on a dragon to be able to destroy a mainline infantry unit by himself. As I've said a few times before, I use ridden monsters often and they do great for me. They just don't single handedly destroy entire main line combat units by themselves. That would in turn remove the focus from the infantry and from the main line units and back to the garbage that was 5th edition where it was no longer about armies, it was about the heroes on their monster mounts.

As a support unit, the hero on monster mount right now is still very powerful and can turn the tide of battle. He just can't do it by himself.

cptcosmic
08-06-2012, 13:22
In addition we need to be careful about strengths here. People are saying that the cannon is too effective at what it does, but this is its only positive attribute; when we compare the monster to the cannon at what it's good at, the Monster will eat hundreds of cannons if not more, and probably without breaking a sweat.

ofcourse it is great that the cannon does well in their role but the pricetag is not adequate compared to ridden monsters. ridden monster costs 6xx points, make your lord a big target for everyone and still need atleast some kind of solid block with a champion to break units which are 3/5 of the monsters points otherwise it will get challenged and fi charging alone it will probably be stuck there for the rest of the game without earning any points back. without a solid block it is limited to hunt squishy support, warmachines and archery units. quite expensive for that task, isnt it? it could take a fast breaker and several support units by myself instead and I would not have to fear that my ridden monster get killed early. 2 cannones on the other hand, take only 200 points, can act from your first turn at range, have alot of valid targets they can shoot at without needing that much support and they dont limit the rest of your army choices much.

if ridden monsters were a bit cheaper and cannons would not autohit both rider and mount then it wouldnt be that bad at all. taking a ridden monster currently only works in comped environment or when your local meta allows it.


I guess our big disconnect is that I have never seen the game as a black and white representation of points vs points. I don't ever want a hero on a monster to be able to tear through an army by himself again. That was 5th edition. That was not an army battle game. That was a hero skirmish game. I want an army battle game.

So no... I don't want a hero on a dragon to be able to destroy a mainline infantry unit by himself. As I've said a few times before, I use ridden monsters often and they do great for me. They just don't single handedly destroy entire main line combat units by themselves. That would in turn remove the focus from the infantry and from the main line units and back to the garbage that was 5th edition where it was no longer about armies, it was about the heroes on their monster mounts.

As a support unit, the hero on monster mount right now is still very powerful and can turn the tide of battle. He just can't do it by himself.
ok, so what is the point of having a ridden monster if it cant tear through a alot cheaper unit in a reasonable amount of time on their own? for the pricetage I might aswell take a cavalry flanker or a chariot and some support units and achieve the similiar result but I dont risk losing alot of points early game due to cannons and uber spells.

BigbyWolf
08-06-2012, 13:23
This is something I've been thinking about for a while and have wanted to discuss on here and that something is: the gripping fear of cannons.

Honestly? It's enhanced a lot by nerd-rage. They might not be over-rated, but I couldn't care less about them- sometimes they may kill something big, sometimes they might not. I love my flyers- I own far too many of them to leave them at home just because little Timmy might bring a cannon. Besides, I have obscene luck with scatter dice (and could guess a distance like it was laser-guided, when that actually mattered), so they have just as much to worry about from my artillery (when playing WoC or OnG) as I do from them.

Also, most armies have things that can counter a cannon.

My view- cannons are nasty when they work, but like all things in Warhams, there's no guarantee. I choose to look at it this way: the cannon has a 50/50 chance of killing my lord on a dragon/ wyvern/ griffon/ etc- either it kills it, or it doesn't. If it does, pack away the model and get on with the game, if it doesn't, then leave it on the table and get on with the game.

This is Warhammer, a lot of things are better than their cost.

IcedCrow
08-06-2012, 13:32
ok, so what is the point of having a ridden monster if it cant tear through a alot cheaper unit in a reasonable amount of time on their own? for the pricetage I might aswell take a cavalry flanker or a chariot and some support units and achieve the similiar result but I dont risk losing alot of points early game due to cannons and uber spells.

I take them because

A) they look cool
B) their mobility allows me to support whatever unit I so desire and often that's more than enough combined with one of my main units to destroy any unit that I want.
C) they make quick work out of the enemy back line.

If I saw things as not models or unit but instead as "650 point shape taking on your 450 point shape" then sure but I play the game for the visuals as much as the game itself. Making it so the dragon riding lord can trash the main infantry unit will turn the game which is already absurdly in the "I take 2 giant blob units and a level 4 wizard" into "I take one giant blob unit and the dragon lord" which I am opposed to as the visual and unit representation does not match what a battle in the middle ages would look like (fantastical creatures aside I'm talking merely the structure of the units) and it turns the game into warmachine set in the warhammer world, or 5th edition warhammer.

Fortunately as a support unit my lord on monsters have typically done better for me far more times than they have not so as such I continue to use them.

yabbadabba
08-06-2012, 13:39
ofcourse it is great that the cannon does well in their role but the pricetag is not adequate compared to ridden monsters. How? Cannons are effectively immobile, useless in combat, often have less wounds, incapable at anything other than shooting. What you are saying is that if you are silly enough to leave your ridden monster out in front of a dragon, then you might lose it, yes? Just like if someone leaves their cannons being able to be charged, shot at or magicked into the ether?

ridden monster costs 6xx points, make your lord a big target for everyone and still need atleast some kind of solid block with a champion to break units which are 3/5 of the monsters points otherwise it will get challenged and fi charging alone Poor decision making then

it will probably be stuck there for the rest of the game Another poor decision then

without earning any points back. That's not the point of the game.

quite expensive for that task, isnt it? it could take a fast breaker and several support units by myself instead and I would not have to fear that my ridden monster get killed early. Its quite expensive because of everything else that goes with it. And, unlike your breaker and support units (which not every army has btw) it doesn't lose its efficiency as it loses wounds. Finally, you have NO chance of your monster and rider blowing itself up on the first turn, or being inactive for a minimum of 1 turn which, in the case of going second, can reander that cannon a waste of 120pts. (1in3).

2 cannones on the other hand, take only 200 points, 240 now.

can act from your first turn at range, So can your ridden monster.

have alot of valid targets they can shoot at without needing that much support Your monster rider has lots of valid targets it can attack without support and, in addition, it can provide addition support to any unit in combat.

and they dont limit the rest of your army choices much. Have you seen the special choices section of the Empire book?

It sounds like the problems you have with cannons are down to your local meta or are theoretical to me. Split the rider/monster target again, use common sense (instead of silly amounts of money) over TLOS and the vast majority of issues with cannons disappear. Then it is down to the luck of the scenery rolls, and your own decision making.

yabbadabba
08-06-2012, 13:42
I take them because

A) they look cool
B) their mobility allows me to support whatever unit I so desire and often that's more than enough combined with one of my main units to destroy any unit that I want.
C) they make quick work out of the enemy back line. Sounds good. I had a captasus destroy 500pts of O+G artillery and light cavalry the other day, no one said it was unfair. There again in another game my General on Griffon got eaten by a giant, which then went on to single handedly destroy my GSs. I still don't think it was unfair.

IcedCrow
08-06-2012, 13:58
the last game I fielded my chaos army with my chaos lord on manticore was a team game vs two empire players. There were five cannons on the table. The chaos lord model was roughly 500 or so points. He destroyed two cannons, swept into two and destroyed two gunner units, caused the other cannons to have to redirect their fire into him instead of the chaos warriors and other main line units bearing down on them, and then ended up helping cripple a steam tank.

All in all he did not make up his points, so many people on the internet would consider that a failure :rolleyes:

However what he did do was free up my main units from being shot at and negated a large portion of enemy shooting through either killing it or having it focus on him (and he still didn't die, wall for the win). That by itself combined with what he killed made him worth taking in that game.

Also I don't really have much else to do that type of support role that my chaos lord on a flying mount can do. It is risky yes, but I am also not a fan of systems or builds where there is no risk at all. Those, IMO, are boring.

Combined-arms is what I feel the game needed most, and I feel the current edition of the game supports. Combined-arms is how real battles were fought, and when employed correctly in this game can do very well. It seems most people prefer the sledgehammer approach though, where their units don't need much support if any. I think that's where a lot of these issues come from. THat's just my observation.

Vipoid
08-06-2012, 15:39
When there's even a small chance that your suggestion leads to every faction running amok with a couple of HPA equivalents, I say troll your boat gently down the usenet (in my most friendly voice of course).

Sorry, but what is an 'HPA'? :confused:

BigbyWolf
08-06-2012, 15:51
Sorry, but what is an 'HPA'? :confused:

Hellpit Abomination.

Jezbot
11-06-2012, 08:26
I dont see why a model costing over 600 points should not be able to beat something that is is only 3/5 of the price. what is the point of the ridden monster then when I still need a solid block of infantry to beat your 450 points unit because the monster does not have enough killing power to overcome the ranks? I might aswell take something cheaper like a unit of cavarly that advances to your flank or a even a chariot.

You're complaining about the basic skill of the game. Sending big monsters off unsupported to big infantry units is supposed to fail. Instead you're supposed to use them as part of a combined strategy, with monsters giving you loads of kills (and therefore loads of combat res) while infantry provide rank bonus, banner and deny the enemy unit steadfast.

If the game worked as you suggest - that monsters should reliably smash aside any cheap unit, then there'd be no game, it'd just be back to the worst days of 7th ed point and click.

Jezbot
11-06-2012, 08:27
if ridden monsters were a bit cheaper and cannons would not autohit both rider and mount then it wouldnt be that bad at all. taking a ridden monster currently only works in comped environment or when your local meta allows it.

The really, really pricy monsters, basically dragons ridden by geared up combat monsters, are likely a bit too expensive for what they do. But cheaper characters on cheaper monsters still work. The answer to that isn't to gimp all cannons or buff all monsters, but to think about dropping the price of the most expensive ridden monsters, and until that point maybe try to invest a few less points in monsters.

That said, I do agree that cannon balls shouldn't auto hit the rider and the monster, though, and think going back to the 1-4 monster, 5-6 rider table would be for the best, in part for a slight tweak to play balance, and in large part because the idea of every single cannon ball always hitting both the rider and the mount is just silly.



ok, so what is the point of having a ridden monster if it cant tear through a alot cheaper unit in a reasonable amount of time on their own? for the pricetage I might aswell take a cavalry flanker or a chariot and some support units and achieve the similiar result but I dont risk losing alot of points early game due to cannons and uber spells.

Cavalry and other fast, hard hitting unit work in the same sort of role. The monster, though, can typically fly, making it much more likely to be in position to flank charge when you want it to. It can also eat the cheaper flanking units like cavalry units and chariots, at which point the enemy has lost his flanking units while your big monster is still in place to support your main line troops.

Jezbot
11-06-2012, 08:28
My view- cannons are nasty when they work, but like all things in Warhams, there's no guarantee. I choose to look at it this way: the cannon has a 50/50 chance of killing my lord on a dragon/ wyvern/ griffon/ etc- either it kills it, or it doesn't. If it does, pack away the model and get on with the game, if it doesn't, then leave it on the table and get on with the game.

That's not how probability works. I posted the actual numbers earlier in the thread - the odds of hitting a monster are 67%, and the odds of wounding it as well are 56%, and then the odds of inflicting enough wounds to kill it based on how many wounds it has (with 5 wounds it's an 18.5% chance of a one hit kill).

But I do agree that you take a risk, whether you're taking a cannon or a monster, and hope for the dice to go your way. If they do or they don't, you just get on with the game.

Oogie boogie boss
11-06-2012, 11:45
I think of it kind of like the cold war: mutual deterrent. Cannons exist primarily to kill large, multi wound models, I.e Monsters, Chariots, etc. that's their primary role in the game. As such, they act as a controlling force, inhibiting the potential for the over-prevalence of monster mounted characters dominating the battlefield through their high wound count, toughness and movement. Equally, vortex spells and the like, as well as various war machine hunting units, deter the over dependence on war machines.
It's all about mutual deterrence to create balance.
Imagine if cannons couldn't pose a threat to monsters. You would suddenly see every lord and his mum mounted on a dragon, wyvern, manticore and the like, and we'd all be complaining about how overpowered they are.

Jezbot
12-06-2012, 03:36
It's all about mutual deterrence to create balance.
Imagine if cannons couldn't pose a threat to monsters. You would suddenly see every lord and his mum mounted on a dragon, wyvern, manticore and the like, and we'd all be complaining about how overpowered they are.

I'm not sure this is true. Thing is, some armies field a cannon, maybe two. One cannon is a fair chance of taking out a monster, and two cannons quite likely to do it. But add in more monsters and you overwhelm the threat of those cannons. Basically an environment where cannons are very deadly to monsters but monsters otherwise destroy everything produces a meta where you either take lots of monsters, or you take none*. It is actually like the Cold War, where the optimum strategies were to either take enough nuclear weapons to blow up the world three times over, or to take very few weapons and focus them on tactical operations. It's all or nothing, anything in between is sub-optimal.

Fortunately, there is another tactical factor in the deployment of monsters, and it's the real reason we don't see lots of monsters - monsters are no longer capable of reliably charging and routing an infantry block by themselves, because of steadfast. As such their best use is situational, and dependant on the army having other units available, which limits the number a strong army will field.

yabbadabba
12-06-2012, 08:04
the odds of hitting a monster are 67%, That can't be right, the odds of missing on the first roll are 33.33%, but there is no guarantee of hitting after that. What assumptions did you make?

Fortunately, there is another tactical factor in the deployment of monsters, and it's the real reason we don't see lots of monsters - monsters are no longer capable of reliably charging and routing an infantry block by themselves, because of steadfast. As such their best use is situational, and dependant on the army having other units available, which limits the number a strong army will field. Good thing too.

We shouldn't rule out Fear. WS1 can have a real effect especially for the monsters.

Jezbot
12-06-2012, 08:31
That can't be right, the odds of missing on the first roll are 33.33%, but there is no guarantee of hitting after that. What assumptions did you make?

To clarify, I'm talking about the odds with a cannon, not a rock lobber or similar.

The cannon, like you say, has a 33% chance of hitting straight up, as when you fire at the rear corner of the target the base will have a length a tick over 2". That means, firing 10" back from the rear corner of the target, you will always hit if your first die rolls an 8 or 10. From there, you basically add up the combinations of the other rolls that will total 8" or more, and then there's your odds.

In this table the first column is the roll on the first artillery die, the second column is what rolls on the second die will score a hit, and the third column is percentage chance of hitting given the roll on the first die.

10 10,8,6,4,2,MF 100%
8 10,8,6,4,2,MF 100%
6 10,8,6,4,2 83%
4 10,8,6,4 67%
2 10,8,6 50%
MF - 0%

So if you sum the percentages and divide by 6, you get 67%.



We shouldn't rule out Fear. WS1 can have a real effect especially for the monsters.

And for that matter Terror. Monsters can do horrible things to war machines once they get within charge range, especially Empire war machines, as you can declare a charge, watch the crew fail their terror check, then redirect to the next war machine, watch them fail their terror check, and so on.

Memnos
12-06-2012, 08:51
Jezbot is correct. One monster in a meta with many cannons is pants, but with target saturation, cannons find it very difficult to be what it was meant to be. As most ridden monsters have flight or horrendously high movement, the cannons have a 50/50 shot of getting one shot off before the monsters are in charge range.

When you look at individual monsters, it's slightly different:

Beastmen - Expect harpies and/or Centigor with a monster heavy list, along with the Chalice that will render half of your shots ineffectual.
Ogre Kingdoms - Expect Stonehorns. It takes many cannon shots to take one down as the number of wounds is halved.
Skaven - Regeneration will eliminate half of all hits on the Skaven. Also note the Storm Banner.
Dark Elves - Regeneration will eliminate half of the hits on the Hydra.
Vampire Counts - Regeneration will eliminate half of the hits on one. The other is a flier with a very decent shooting attack that will kill off a cannon as soon as he can fly. If you don't get first turn, expect to lose a cannon to it.
Wood Elves - 5+ ward save will eliminate a third of all hits.
Daemons - 5+ ward save will eliminate a third of all hits on their Greater Daemons. Other tricks might reduce that even more, such as regeneration or -1 to wound cloaks.

That's just off the top of my head. Are Cannons really killing every monster as soon as they come out? I played a Monster Mash beastmen army and rarely lost even a single monster to cannons. That's obviously anecdotal as I specifically tooled up my army to hunt down war machines and minimize their casualties, but the point stands: How many people out there are specializing their armies around monsters and having difficulty?

jtrowell
12-06-2012, 09:57
[...]

And for that matter Terror. Monsters can do horrible things to war machines once they get within charge range, especially Empire war machines, as you can declare a charge, watch the crew fail their terror check, then redirect to the next war machine, watch them fail their terror check, and so on.

I might be missing something, but for the specific case of warmachines I think that you might be in error: warmachines that fail a panic test (and terror is a panic test in 8th edition if I remember correctly) they don't flee but cower under their machine, losing their next turn of shooting. It's only when they breack in close combat that the warmachine is auto killed.

So if your terror causing monster declare a charge against a warmachine and the machine fail the terror check, as it had not fled you cannot redirect.

I I missed something in the rules allowing the monster to redirect despite those rules, please feel free to correct me.

However declaring a charge against a support unit (fast cav or the like), making it flee with terror, and then redirecting to the warmachine is still a very effective way of neutralising 2 units at once.

Spedgal
12-06-2012, 17:54
In my experience, it has been less about cannons being too strong and more about most monsters not having a good job to do. Rarely does any monster I have seen fielded (barring Greater Daemons, but they are characters in and of themselves and different in that way to me) do anything that the same number of points in infantry or cavalry/warbeasts couldn't have done better and safer. The obvious exceptions are HPA and Hydra, both of which have some ingrained protection with regen.

People talk about not wanting a big monster to tear into infantry but... to me... this is the roll that they should be best at. In fantasy literature and imagry, it is the giant monster that sends the peasants fleeing: a monster should be good at taking out rank-and-file, but have trouble against elites, characters, and artillery. Steadfast, changes in Terror, and step-up have made them lose that role and I don't really get the feeling that they have another role to jump into except 'looking cool' which, frankly, doesn't cut it

The bearded one
12-06-2012, 18:17
the last game I fielded my chaos army with my chaos lord on manticore was a team game vs two empire players. There were five cannons on the table. The chaos lord model was roughly 500 or so points. He destroyed two cannons, swept into two and destroyed two gunner units, caused the other cannons to have to redirect their fire into him instead of the chaos warriors and other main line units bearing down on them, and then ended up helping cripple a steam tank.

How did you get him to the other side of the table in a charging position without being shot? My stegadon always gets 6 wounds to the face any time even his toe shows from behind a corner of a building.


By the way gang, don't want to interrupt all the fanatical mathhammering going on, but please do realise that the 3 armies that have cannons, all 3 have a different one which effects their accuracy:
- empire cannons are bog standard cannons
- dwarf cannons virtually always feature the rune of forging, which allows you to reroll misfires on both artillery dices, decreasing the chance of rolling misfires by about 6 times.
- ogre cannons roll 2 dice on the bounce, making them less likely to undershoot their target (and if you aim 10" from the back of a base, you can't overshoot).

Please keep that in mind. I did some mathhammering in the old gigantinormous cannon thread in the general fantasy forums and calculated that aiming 10" from the back is the most accurate way to fire, even against targets smaller than 2".

BigbyWolf
12-06-2012, 18:24
That's not how probability works. I posted the actual numbers earlier in the thread - the odds of hitting a monster are 67%, and the odds of wounding it as well are 56%, and then the odds of inflicting enough wounds to kill it based on how many wounds it has (with 5 wounds it's an 18.5% chance of a one hit kill).

But I do agree that you take a risk, whether you're taking a cannon or a monster, and hope for the dice to go your way. If they do or they don't, you just get on with the game.

It's how it works for me- I tend to approach everything with a 50/50 perspective :p. There's a 50/50 chance that I'll marry Scarlett Johansen too...either I'll marry her, or I won't. I prefer to be simplistic.

I wasn't disputing any earlier posted figures, just giving my own opinion. Frankly, in a game involving dice I never put any faith in odds or probability anyway- I've had enough units routed by things they should walk over to teach me that. :cries:

Spiney Norman
12-06-2012, 18:27
I have a problem with the thread since a lot of it is based on the incredibly false assumption that nobod brings stone throwers.

+1 I wouldn't think of fielding my Orc and Goblin or Tomb King armies without at least one, usually two for my TK (I would field 2 in O&G if it wasn't for my doom diver)

When you don't have access to cannons, they are definitely the best a man can get for dropping on monsters, they have the benefit of being great against infantry too.

The only army where I could bring a "stone thrower" type weapon is the mortar in my empire army, and that's only because str 2 sucks balls and the mortar is crazily overpointed compared to the holy great cannon.

IcedCrow
12-06-2012, 20:38
How did you get him to the other side of the table in a charging position without being shot? My stegadon always gets 6 wounds to the face any time even his toe shows from behind a corner of a building.

Walls. That's how =) Walls and a building. The building blocked line of sight entirely for a turn. The second turn I was behind a brick wall and the empire player failed to land the cannonball on my face. The first overshot (yay 10) the second hit the wall.

Turn 3 I charged and it was over.

A flying 20" move beats a stegadon's ground movement any day of the week =) allows me to get into better position easier.

The bearded one
12-06-2012, 21:23
Walls. That's how =) Walls and a building. The building blocked line of sight entirely for a turn. The second turn I was behind a brick wall and the empire player failed to land the cannonball on my face. The first overshot (yay 10) the second hit the wall.

Turn 3 I charged and it was over.

A flying 20" move beats a stegadon's ground movement any day of the week =) allows me to get into better position easier.

There's part of the answer for the terror for cannons then; ridden monsters don't like being seriously expensive but having everything hit at once by a str10 hit, while non-flying monsters such as the stegadon, are generally boned from the start.

my gaming group has an inexplicable distaste for fences and walls and tend to want to keep them to a minimum or not use them at all.. while this might have something to do with all bar 1 of them having either 2 cannons or 1 ironblaster, I don't even think they're really aware of obstacles stopping cannonballs.

Jezbot
13-06-2012, 03:31
I might be missing something, but for the specific case of warmachines I think that you might be in error: warmachines that fail a panic test (and terror is a panic test in 8th edition if I remember correctly) they don't flee but cower under their machine, losing their next turn of shooting. It's only when they breack in close combat that the warmachine is auto killed.

Yeah, that's what I meant. They lose a turn of shooting, while the monster can move in and trash the one war machine that's brave enough to resist.


So if your terror causing monster declare a charge against a warmachine and the machine fail the terror check, as it had not fled you cannot redirect.

I I missed something in the rules allowing the monster to redirect despite those rules, please feel free to correct me.

Aah... that's how we've played it. Now you mention I'm not sure of the exact rule, or why we played it as we did. Hmm, will have to look this up. Cheers for the heads up.

Jezbot
13-06-2012, 03:33
People talk about not wanting a big monster to tear into infantry but... to me... this is the roll that they should be best at. In fantasy literature and imagry, it is the giant monster that sends the peasants fleeing: a monster should be good at taking out rank-and-file, but have trouble against elites, characters, and artillery. Steadfast, changes in Terror, and step-up have made them lose that role and I don't really get the feeling that they have another role to jump into except 'looking cool' which, frankly, doesn't cut it

But then how does that work within the game? If monsters can just smash low level troops and rout them, exactly what place do low level troops have in the game?

And I'd argue monsters do have a place, at trashing high value targets, and at working with infantry blocks in combined charges.

Jezbot
13-06-2012, 03:39
Please keep that in mind. I did some mathhammering in the old gigantinormous cannon thread in the general fantasy forums and calculated that aiming 10" from the back is the most accurate way to fire, even against targets smaller than 2".

I've done the same maths, and reached the same conclusion. 10" from the farthest corner of the enemy unit will maximise casualties against all targets. However, as formations get deeper you increase the chance of overshooting the back rank - costing you the bonus of sniping a character who fails his Look Out Sir roll. Exactly how important that option is depends on the game involved, and requires the player making a judgement balancing character sniping against overall casualties inflicted.

Jezbot
13-06-2012, 03:39
It's how it works for me- I tend to approach everything with a 50/50 perspective :p. There's a 50/50 chance that I'll marry Scarlett Johansen too...either I'll marry her, or I won't. I prefer to be simplistic.

I wasn't disputing any earlier posted figures, just giving my own opinion. Frankly, in a game involving dice I never put any faith in odds or probability anyway- I've had enough units routed by things they should walk over to teach me that. :cries:

:) Fair enough. Good luck with Scarlett.

Ghremdal
13-06-2012, 08:45
My most current list has a wyvern warboss and a arachnarok. It works well, and is more fun then my older lists (mostly infantry).

Things that make it work:

1) Terrain. During terrain placement I try to place buildings, hills, etc in a way that my wyvern and/or arachanrok can hide until they get into charge range.
2) Target saturation. Usually cannons will have 1 maybe 2 rounds of good shooting. This usually means that at most only one of my monsters will bite the bullet, and the other is free to rampage.
3) Due to the size of the base, the Arachnarok is hard to miss but for some reason all the cannons/rock lobbas are targeted on my wyvern. With the new cost, it makes the wyvern really cost effective even if he dies. The 4+ ward offers some measure of protection for the warboss.
4) Troll screen. It is really hard for a normal(non flaming) cannonball to go through 2 ranks of trolls.

I'm not saying its super effective and that points could not be spend elsewhere, but it can work (and work well) and it is a lot more fun (for me) then having just infantry blocks.

Vipoid
13-06-2012, 10:18
And I'd argue monsters do have a place, at trashing high value targets, and at working with infantry blocks in combined charges.

Out of interest, what sort of high-value targets are you talking about?

Also, surely cavalry are far better in the role of combined-charges, since 2 ranks of cavalry can actually flank a unit and remove its rank bonus, not to mention having their own standards etc.. On the other hand, a monster can't remove rank bonuses with a flank or rear charge, and relies entirely on the other charging unit to overcome the combat resolution against it.

Lord Solar Plexus
13-06-2012, 10:46
Depends on the cavalry and the monster in question. Both bring different (dis)advantages to the table. Many monsters cause terror or fear for example, while some cavalry can have ranks and (magic) banners. Blood Knights are a bit too expensive for ranks; my Griffon is faster than my cavalry (and can fly over obstacles). Cavalry has a better save but usually less T; they also lose attacks when they suffer wounds while monsters retain their damage output even on one wound, Hydras excepted.

Memnos
13-06-2012, 10:50
Monsters have several advantages over cavalry. They put out far more damage in a small frontage - Able to even go just corner to corner with one model and still able to drop huge amounts of damage. They generally have higher damage with the exception of the charge. They're often cheaper than a full unit of 10 Cavalry and they look spectacular.

yabbadabba
13-06-2012, 16:35
-snip- Something was bugging me about these numbers and then I worked it out. This is very specific as in you will need the bases to be 50mm or more, and you will need corner to corner or it won't work with the numbers here

IcedCrow
13-06-2012, 18:46
There's part of the answer for the terror for cannons then; ridden monsters don't like being seriously expensive but having everything hit at once by a str10 hit, while non-flying monsters such as the stegadon, are generally boned from the start.

my gaming group has an inexplicable distaste for fences and walls and tend to want to keep them to a minimum or not use them at all.. while this might have something to do with all bar 1 of them having either 2 cannons or 1 ironblaster, I don't even think they're really aware of obstacles stopping cannonballs.

We use random terrain. If you are intentionally removing walls and fences from the game then yeah... I'd probably not want to use a flying monster either since part of keeping them alive involves using the obstacles to minimize cannonballs to the mouth.

Jezbot
14-06-2012, 05:25
Something was bugging me about these numbers and then I worked it out. This is very specific as in you will need the bases to be 50mm or more, and you will need corner to corner or it won't work with the numbers here

Monster bases are 50mm, and if you angle to the furthest back corner then base always comes up at least 2".

Jezbot
14-06-2012, 05:33
Out of interest, what sort of high-value targets are you talking about?

Characters, particularly wizards. If there's no champion to give a challenge as protection, then you can snipe characters. Other high cost units that do poorly against high strength attacks, like cavalry and other monsters can also do well (though you have to make a judgement call in each case, as the loss of thunderstomp can be problematic).


Also, surely cavalry are far better in the role of combined-charges, since 2 ranks of cavalry can actually flank a unit and remove its rank bonus, not to mention having their own standards etc.. On the other hand, a monster can't remove rank bonuses with a flank or rear charge, and relies entirely on the other charging unit to overcome the combat resolution against it.

The monster can fly, which makes it a little easier to line up the charge you want.

Having their own standard shouldn't be a factor, as the infantry unit you're putting in the front to cancel steadfast should also have a banner. The rank bonus is a factor, but then the monster will generally score so many kills between the rider, monster and thunderstomp that, provided you took away steadfast, you should be forcing a break test on a very low leadership.

I'm not saying monsters are better, I'm saying each works well in the role, with slightly different advantages (cavalry can suffer a cannon shot and not get wiped from the map, for instance). It really depends on playing style, and the individual army book in question. For instance, in the last book I got little value out of my griffon, simply because it was too expensive for too little, while knights were pretty good value. At the same time my mate placing a manticore on my flank caused me concern in a way his Chaos Knights simply didn't.

yabbadabba
14-06-2012, 17:45
Monster bases are 50mm, and if you angle to the furthest back corner then base always comes up at least 2". Exactly, so if you can't do that your figures don't work. That is the problem with math hammer, it is always idealised.

skirder
14-06-2012, 20:40
First, a quick bit on math....

stacking fractions (1/6 chance then 1/6 chance then 1/6 chance) =/= 1/2

5/6 of 1 = 5/6
5/6 of 5/6 = 25/36
5/6 of 25/36 = 125/216
this is about a 58%, which isn't much more than a 50%, but it makes more of a difference the more in depth you go (hit, wound, as, ws) and the bigger the fractions (1/2 chance then 1/2 is 1/4, if 1/6 chance then 1/6 chance then 1/6 chance = 1/2, then that would be 100% or 0%, depending on which way you were going)



back onto the topic, most of the cannons i face are quite fortunate. misfires can be negated when you are dwarves. even if there is only a 1/10 chance that they kill a monster/character combo or one or the other, would you be ok with that high of a chance of losing 1/5-1/6 of your army (a very important part as well) on turn 1?

i know there are a million ways to get around it, and i'm not saying that i don't use them... I'm just saying that the potential affect they have on the game is something that you have to consider if you are taking monsters.

Jezbot
15-06-2012, 04:43
Exactly, so if you can't do that your figures don't work. That is the problem with math hammer, it is always idealised.

That's a really negative attitude. I mean, in the situations where you can't line up the cannon with part of the base that's over 2" deep (almost certainly due to blocking terrain), then you don't just say 'oh maths doesn't work', instead you just account for that in your calculations. So in this case we build a new table, figuring out what the odds are when you fire from 10" back, and the cannon ball has to pass through the 10" point to score a hit. Here the first column shows the first D10 roll, and the second column gives the % chance of the second roll adding to the first to make 10" or more;

10 100%
8 83%
6 67%
4 50%
2 33%
MF 0%

Add those percentages and divide by 6 and you get 55%. As such, it can be stated that when the base in line with the cannon is 2" deep, the odds of hitting are 67%. When you cannot and so the base presented to the target is less than 2", the odds of hitting are 55%.

To correct your claim above, the problem with some bad mathammer is that it's idealised, because it tries to assume away unknowables. Good mathammer accounts for everything that can be accounted for mathematically, and states that which can't be accounted for by maths. A cannon shot is fundamentally a bunch of dice rolls, we like to think differently because we pick out points on the table and talk about inches rolled and things, but at it's core it is as mechanical as BS shooting.

Jezbot
15-06-2012, 04:44
First, a quick bit on math....

stacking fractions (1/6 chance then 1/6 chance then 1/6 chance) =/= 1/2

Well, obviously. What caused you to think it was needed to state this?

Askari
15-06-2012, 08:06
Well, obviously. What caused you to think it was needed to state this?

The original post.

skirder
15-06-2012, 16:06
The original post.

^^^
and somewhere along the line i saw someone state that there was a 6/6 chance of missing... that hurt my head so badly that I had to say something, lol

Askari
15-06-2012, 17:24
^^^
and somewhere along the line i saw someone state that there was a 6/6 chance of missing... that hurt my head so badly that I had to say something, lol

That was me correcting the original post :p


And if the Monster has 4 wounds that's another 3/6 chance that the Cannon won't do enough wounds to kill it! Therefore altogether a Cannon has 6/6 chance to not kill a 4 wound Monster!

Or that's not how you figure out the chances of a Cannon hitting you...

Bolded relevant part.

Don Zeko
15-06-2012, 18:29
The same principles apply to a dragon though as they do to a manticore (dealing with the "you never see fighty lords on monsters anymore because a cannon will just one shot it in the face so there's no reason to take it" mantra). The only reason I don't field a dragon is because in a 2000 - 2250 point game, a chaos lord and a dragon don't really fit. They are more for the 3000 and above games which I don't play much of.

I always thought that the reason you never see dragonlords any more is that they take all game to kill even a modest ranked unit, since they have 0 ranks for breaking steadfast, they are easily killed by cannons and other artillery, they prevent you from taking a level 4 mage, and in general they are basically always less killy than an elite unit worth even 2/3 of their point value. Given the choice between a 575 point dragon lord and 400 points of, say, cold one knights, who in their right mind takes the dragon?

yabbadabba
15-06-2012, 19:30
That's a really negative attitude. Nope, its a really precise attitude. Go back to your first post I asked you on this and you will see that you made an inaccurate claim. If you want to use mathematics to make an absolute claim, do it properly please.

To correct your claim above, the problem with some bad mathammer is that it's idealised, because it tries to assume away unknowables. Good mathammer accounts for everything that can be accounted for mathematically, and states that which can't be accounted for by maths. A cannon shot is fundamentally a bunch of dice rolls, we like to think differently because we pick out points on the table and talk about inches rolled and things, but at it's core it is as mechanical as BS shooting. You haven't corrected anything. In fact math hammer relies on a smooth surface with nothing to impede the rolling of the dice, that the rolls happen in an environment which does not affect the dice rolls in anyway, that the shot being taken is perfect in every case, that the way the dice is rolled is identical each time.... So please, math hammer is idealised in almost every way. Its nice for the internet to argue over and that's about it.

Don Zeko
16-06-2012, 02:46
You haven't corrected anything. In fact math hammer relies on a smooth surface with nothing to impede the rolling of the dice, that the rolls happen in an environment which does not affect the dice rolls in anyway, that the shot being taken is perfect in every case, that the way the dice is rolled is identical each time.... So please, math hammer is idealised in almost every way. Its nice for the internet to argue over and that's about it.

It sounds to me like you're making the case that mathammer is useful. Just like, say, the entire field of economics, mathammer is a model that simplifies or ignores aspects of the game in order to make predictions about the outcomes of complex systems. When it's useful, it's in situations like what you described: rolling a dice. technically speaking, rolling a six-sided dice is an extremely complex physics problem and the outcome depends upon a mind-boggling number of variables. In practice, it lands on each number about a sixth of the time, so you can model the result of rolling one as "a random integer between 1 and 6." When it isn't useful, those ignored or simplified variables have a substantial effect upon the result. But if you're using Mathammer to answer a question like "Am I reasonably likely to make this charge?" or "Will I break those marauders with a frontal charge from my Black Orcs" or "If I allocate my power dice in this way, how likely am I to cast spells x, y, and z without miscasting or failing to cast?" and you bear in mind that outliers do happen, Mathammer is an indispensible part of the hobby for anyone who wants to be an effective general.

Jezbot
18-06-2012, 04:16
^^^
and somewhere along the line i saw someone state that there was a 6/6 chance of missing... that hurt my head so badly that I had to say something, lol

Fair enough. It just wasn't clear, as you didn't quote or mention the OP in your answer. Thanks for clarifying.

Jezbot
18-06-2012, 04:35
Nope, its a really precise attitude. Go back to your first post I asked you on this and you will see that you made an inaccurate claim. If you want to use mathematics to make an absolute claim, do it properly please.

No, I didn't make an incorrect claim. I stated quite clearly that if you target the right part of the enemy model, you can ensure length of the 50mm base you cannon shot travels across will be 2". Given your protest, I then added a consideration in which the cannon could only a line offering less than 2" of the target. So at this point I've provided the odds of scoring a hit on the target given the entirety of shots possible.

And all you can offer in response is another vague assertion that I got something wrong.


You haven't corrected anything. In fact math hammer relies on a smooth surface with nothing to impede the rolling of the dice, that the rolls happen in an environment which does not affect the dice rolls in anyway, that the shot being taken is perfect in every case, that the way the dice is rolled is identical each time.... So please, math hammer is idealised in almost every way. Its nice for the internet to argue over and that's about it.

Oh, so the issue is that you don't understand how probability works. The complaint about a non-perfect environment is simply wrong, because the simple fact is you have no idea what influence the environmental factors are having on each game in which they're played. So maybe the environmental conditions mean that you're more likely to roll misfires... but then maybe the environmental factors mean misfires are less likely. So unless you sit there and track in game rolls of those dice for 100 or 1,000 rolls, then the only sensible assumption is that each dice roll is equally likely.

You don't get to just reject an entire field of science.

Lord Solar Plexus
18-06-2012, 05:38
Just like, say, the entire field of economics, mathammer is a model that simplifies or ignores aspects of the game in order to make predictions about the outcomes of complex systems.

Hmm, that's uncomfortably close to every (other) ideology.

Jezbot
18-06-2012, 09:31
When it isn't useful, those ignored or simplified variables have a substantial effect upon the result. But if you're using Mathammer to answer a question like "Am I reasonably likely to make this charge?" or "Will I break those marauders with a frontal charge from my Black Orcs" or "If I allocate my power dice in this way, how likely am I to cast spells x, y, and z without miscasting or failing to cast?" and you bear in mind that outliers do happen, Mathammer is an indispensible part of the hobby for anyone who wants to be an effective general.

Sure, and it's also something that absolutely every player has to accept on one level or another. Understanding that Ld9 is better than Ld8 is only possible with a basic understanding of mathammer. You don't have to go to the extremes of calculating out the more complex mathammer situations, but you don't get to pretend that such a thing isn't possible.

And given I've established that a cannon shot is just a random bit of mathammer dressed up to look like something else, it isn't possible to pretend that we can't mathammer out the different options.

Soundwave
18-06-2012, 16:40
Oh please is there any magic left?All this talk of mathhammer does my head in yeah sure its 99% B.S correct but we are not punching our dice rolls through a calculator and sometimes yeah stuff happens and then it wont oddities are common and cannons are no exception yeah sure they may do wonders at times and others just simply blow up and die! Thats the beauty cannons have specific targets although with the rise of the "buss" and such like they are still horror on good days.

Lord Inquisitor
18-06-2012, 20:45
Mathhammer is the reality of the game. Outlandish things happen, mathhammer covers those too, we can work out the probability of these oddities too. For the calculations, it is important not to consider "average dice". Mathhammer is always correct (if you did your sums right!) but you need to ask the questions right. While seven might be average on 2D6, there's only a 1 in 6 chance of actually rolling that seven. "Average wounds" is good enough when dealing with large numbers of attacks, but cannons are somewhat binary - either they hit and wound or they miss. Binomial is much better, work out the odds of hitting/wounding. I have done so several times in the 43 page thread we had previously so I'm just going to link to it here (http://www.warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?340350-How-to-fix-cannons&p=6209334&viewfull=1#post6209334), at the bottom of the post is a calculation for two cannons vs a zombie dragon with rider. The bottom line is there is a 60% chance of either rider or mount dying to one pair of cannons firing, assuming clear terrain and a 4+ ward on rider. Further on in that thread I've done additional calculations taking into account walls, intervening MI and so on. This is only two cannons, most Empire lists I've seen recently have had 3 cannons and a steam cannon.

With regard to the viability of ridden monsters, it is very much a "final nail in the coffin" sort of situation. If there were no war machines out there, I would very much run a vampire on a zombie dragon, even in competitive settings. It looks cool, it's a nice centerpiece model with plenty of potential for conversions. It has a niche available to it, particularly in a VC army. Likewise with my Empire, I would consider wizard/popemobiles without war machines in the meta. I'd even consider a general or wizard on a griffon. Again, it is a small niche, but a flying powerhouse is a very useful thing in the game, and can really turn the tide on elite units in multiple combats. The presence of cannons, however, just closes that niche - it just isn't worth the risk.

Montegue
19-06-2012, 01:43
The presence of cannons, however, just closes that niche - it just isn't worth the risk. [/COLOR]

To you. Plenty of folks take models vulnerable to cannon fire and do just fine.

Lord Inquisitor
19-06-2012, 02:16
Certainly some monsters and chariots are used. Typically the following is true:
- Cheap. 250 points is about the maximum you'd want to spend on something that can be cannonbait, but usually much less.
- Save. A ward or regen save, or some other form of mitigating damage (Destroyer's re-roll to wound, Stonehorn's half damage, etc.) or simply having a heap of wounds.
- Worth the risk. Massive damage output, 360-degree charge or significant buffs all make a monster worth the risk. Putting your general or level 4 out on a monster is a big loss to the army if they die.

The most common monsters we see are things like Hydra, which fit nicely into all three categories. Some monsters or chariots fit only into two - greater daemons have a save and are worth the risk (although that's debatable, since no GD armies are more popular these days), warsphynxes are cheap(ish) and can really dish out the hurt in combat but don't have a ward (but again, are far from universal in TK lists).

The bearded one
19-06-2012, 02:35
Is anybody in the mathhammer accounting for runes of forging on dwarf cannons (rerolling misfires on both artillery dice), and that ironblasters roll 2 artillery dice and pick the highest for the bounce? Of the 3 armies using "normal" cannons (so no warplightning cannons!) , 2 have additions improving their accuracy.

Jezbot
19-06-2012, 04:04
Oh please is there any magic left?All this talk of mathhammer does my head in yeah sure its 99% B.S correct but we are not punching our dice rolls through a calculator and sometimes yeah stuff happens and then it wont oddities are common and cannons are no exception yeah sure they may do wonders at times and others just simply blow up and die! Thats the beauty cannons have specific targets although with the rise of the "buss" and such like they are still horror on good days.

Umm, all that stuff can be accounted for with mathammer. Mathammer isn't about pretending the most likely thing happens, it's about calculating the odds of each event happening. For example, a cannon without any mods will explode one time in 18 shots.

Jezbot
19-06-2012, 04:08
Is anybody in the mathhammer accounting for runes of forging on dwarf cannons (rerolling misfires on both artillery dice), and that ironblasters roll 2 artillery dice and pick the highest for the bounce? Of the 3 armies using "normal" cannons (so no warplightning cannons!) , 2 have additions improving their accuracy.

Empire can take Engineers as well. They rarely do, as its too many points to just reroll the first die, but they could.

That said, there's not much point in accounting for that stuff, as it just add to much complexity when the case for the strength of cannons against monsters is already pretty clear. Typically the best place to start if you want to make a case for some weapon or another is to take the worst case scenario, and if that still looks pretty good then you know you've got an argument... from there it's no point adding in all the options that only make the case for the potency of cannons even stronger.

Lord Solar Plexus
19-06-2012, 06:07
The presence of cannons, however, [...] just isn't worth the risk.

Quite true. The risk of them dying is far too great, so cannon are just free points for the opposition.

boli
19-06-2012, 12:20
Maths is life 98.45% of all scientists agree with this.

:)

Memnos
19-06-2012, 12:53
Oh please is there any magic left?All this talk of mathhammer does my head in yeah sure its 99% B.S correct but we are not punching our dice rolls through a calculator and sometimes yeah stuff happens and then it wont oddities are common and cannons are no exception yeah sure they may do wonders at times and others just simply blow up and die! Thats the beauty cannons have specific targets although with the rise of the "buss" and such like they are still horror on good days.


I... Don't think you understand what the word 'probabilities' means.

If you always rolled 1-2-3-4-5-6, then probability would be useless.*

* - Although, by probability, eventually someone somewhere will eventually spend their entire dice-rolling-life having the dice come up 1-2-3-4-5-6. Such a person will no doubt be accused of cheating and will be honestly mystified at why this happens. However, we can safely say that such a person would be an aberration and can safely be ignored in the grand scheme of things, thanks to the low probability of it occurring within our lifetimes to someone we meet regularly.

Soundwave
21-06-2012, 12:58
No problem Memnos your probably right i dont.Anyhow on one fate full night i borrowed my mates dwarf army and had all my 3 cannons misfire and explode one after the other same phase, that was quite magical for me.

The bearded one
21-06-2012, 13:21
No problem Memnos your probably right i dont.Anyhow on one fate full night i borrowed my mates dwarf army and had all my 3 cannons misfire and explode one after the other same phase, that was quite magical for me.

did those cannons have runes of forging?

Soundwave
21-06-2012, 13:28
No i was being cheep:shifty:

Lord Inquisitor
21-06-2012, 17:34
Is anybody in the mathhammer accounting for runes of forging on dwarf cannons (rerolling misfires on both artillery dice), and that ironblasters roll 2 artillery dice and pick the highest for the bounce? Of the 3 armies using "normal" cannons (so no warplightning cannons!) , 2 have additions improving their accuracy.
I haven't done the maths for dwarf cannons or ironblasters. My feeling is that while they're more expensive but you get accuracy for those points so I suspect (without running the numbers) that they're just as lethal to monsters, you're just looking at 2 cannons not 3. Ironblasters and Steam Tanks are also some of the most common cannons you see these days and they're mobile, making hiding behind terrain pretty hard.


Quite true. The risk of them dying is far too great, so cannon are just free points for the opposition.
Which is why no one takes cannons? :eyebrows:

The error in this argument should be obvious. Cannons are a good, reliable purchase. Monsters are not. Why? Because cannons affect the game turn 1. A cannon will typically earn its points back over a couple of shooting phases. If it dies but has reduced the enemy fighting capability by the same amount of points, it is a fair trade-off (at least in the long run, even if cannons haven't finished any units off). It also means that war machine hunters are hunting them and not running interference. If the enemy brings monsters or chariots cannons can score back hundreds of points before the enemy even moves. So cannons have a big effect on the game early on. Even if they die turn 2 or 3 they've typically already been worth their points.

Monsters on the other hand, they typically have to get across the board to be useful. If they get killed turn 2, they're dead, they give up a ton of VPs for nothing in return. Even when they get across the board most monsters fail to rock the world.

Cannons are a small gamble with a good chance that they'll make their points back and if the enemy brings high-value targets they're extremely rewarding. Monsters are a big gamble that they'll be useful at all and an all-too-small chance they'll be extremely rewarding. It's pretty clear which is the better bet.


* - Although, by probability, eventually someone somewhere will eventually spend their entire dice-rolling-life having the dice come up 1-2-3-4-5-6. Such a person will no doubt be accused of cheating and will be honestly mystified at why this happens. However, we can safely say that such a person would be an aberration and can safely be ignored in the grand scheme of things, thanks to the low probability of it occurring within our lifetimes to someone we meet regularly.
In such a case, we are unlikely to see such an individual within the lifetime of the universe.