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Lone Monkey
25-10-2012, 05:48
My buddy and I were sitting around having a couple-four beers tonight and musing about various 40k topics when we ended up on the subject of flyers. He stated that he felt they were ill-suited for 40k in general, but since they're here, there are certain things he'd of liked to seen in regards to how they're handled. After his examples, I can't say as I disagree with him and I thought I'd toss it out there for something to kick around in a "what if...? type of scenario.

Firstly, AV 12 Flyers. There are too many. The Valkyrie started life as an AV 11/11/10 beast and would be much less abusive had it stayed there. As GW is not known for changing such things I think we can all assume this will stay. As a skimmer it wasn't terrible, but as a Flyer AV 12 is brutal. His fix; whilst zooming all flyers are hit on their rear armor from ground troops. Much as hit from the top on tanks went from side so could we get a different ruling from underneath (assuming the underside is less heavily armored). In hover mode, they would be allowed to use their facings thus getting full benefit. This would also accommodate the other offenders out there, as pretty much any non AV 10 flyer is able to switch modes, and could be mitigated a bit without the need to retool existing rules in codecies.

Second, flyers hitting ground and air target equally well. A supersonic jet is gonna have to fly at some pretty impressive angles to hit ground troops like they do now. They are supposed to be much better suited to air-to-air combat. Therefore make it so that a model requires Strafing Run to fire normally at ground targets. Thing like interceptors would be given a distinct role and bombers would then be made to be more effective against ground units. Skyfire could possibly be removed from bomber style flyers with the exception of maybe a single weapon so they can still partially engage air targets, or some other change could be applied to limit their effectiveness in air-to-air combat, but the roles would then be defined. For flyers with zoom and hover, the mode would determine how they shoot. While zooming they can engage aircraft and while hovering they gain strafing run. Certain exceptions like the Vulture could still have it regardless, but ultimately you create a role based unit and not a catch all one.

In both of these examples it gives a clear benefit/drawback to how the mode of flight affects those models that have access to it, and I feel adds a nice layer of strategy to how you would utilize flyers in 40k

Anyways, while I know we spoke at length, those are the two that stuck with me. What do you fine ladies and gents think? I feel that something along these lines could have made for a very different experience than we have now.

P.S. While I have you feel free to chime in on your stance on this assaulting vehicles topic; Is anyone else frustrated that if a vehicle moves flat out, thus limiting what it can do in exchange for extra speed, is still hit just as easily as if they scooted a minuscule amount? I know I am.

MajorWesJanson
25-10-2012, 06:10
I agree that maybe Valks and Vendettas should be be dropped to 11/11/10.
I also like the idea of a "Gunship" rule for certain aircraft, that disallows them to skyfire. Mainly for the Valk and Vendetta, but possibly for the Storm Raven as well. Since Valks/ Vendettas, and Storm Ravens all have missile options, allow them to trade their normal missiles out for interceptor missiles S7 AP4 Skyfire, One-shot. Other craft could use that upgrade as well, such as the Dark Eldar aircraft who have missile slots. And maybe extend that to say Tau, give seeker missiles Skyfire, which would not only make Sky-Rays into proper AA tanks, but also allow them to have AA ability on tanks, which would make them stand out.

Lone Monkey
25-10-2012, 06:16
Ideally I'd like to see drops to 11/11/10 as well, but I doubt we'll ever see it sadly. As to the missile swap option I like that a lot! Allows for a very simple way to keep a model dual purposed without making it too rules clunky. Good call there! Sky Rays... yeah bit of a boner there as they should have it already just given their intended role and background.

Chem-Dog
25-10-2012, 06:20
Actually, the differentiation between the different kinds of roles Aircraft have could go a long way to fixing the problems with Flyers at the moment. Bomber, Dropship, Ground attack/support craft,and Interceptor/Escort seem to be the categories that you could fit most of, if not all of the current airplanes into.

And yes, I was hoping that to-hit rolls on a vehicle would be resolved against a Ws value decided by it's speed. Stationary - Auto hit, upto 6= Ws1, over 6 to 12, ws2 and so-on, or some such. it would have even opened up the ability for certain vehicles to have increased defensive measures (ie+1Ws), specific units to be better at engaging Enemy Vehicles in Melee and all sorts of the usual type of exceptions, exemptions and extensions.

Geep
25-10-2012, 07:01
I had assumed the armour 12 flyers were just a hold-over from when flyers counted as skimmers, and hadn't been errata'd because GW doesn't care to fix problems like that. Unfortunately the Heldrake shows AV12 flyers with actual flyer rules are here to stay.

I like both the ideas given by the OP. Really it would make more sense for people to hit zooming flyers on the side (as with tanks shot from above), but that doesn't fix the problem due to damn armour 12/12/10 insanity. Specific Skyfire weapons on a flyer would also help make some of the wierder but more historically accurate weapons stand out as well- like the grot turret gunner in the current Ork bomber, or the rear-firing heavy bolter in the large IG bomber. These probably also need a rule that they can fire independently of other weapons.

Cthell
25-10-2012, 09:13
Unfortunately, "always hitting the side/rear armour" fixes are going to run into a brick wall - a flying brick, called a stormraven.

I always wondered about a "vulnerable at speed" rule - because of the high speeds involved, and the danger posed by even a momentary loss of control, all flyers are treated as having AV 10,10,10 when in flyer mode. If they enter hover mode, they get the full benefit of their armour. After all, a flying monstrous creature can take a S9 AP2 hit just from having a laser pointer shone in its eye, so why aren't vehicle pilots at least slightly put-off by a hail of mass-reactive bolts peppering the side of their cockpit?

Latro_
25-10-2012, 09:29
I'll be honest i'v not had much trouble with flyers yet in 6th, if you hit em they die like everything else. Mind you i'v not faced vendetta or necron croissant spam yet. Only the odd helldrake and storm raven.

If i had stuff with skyfire (which i'm now looking at) then i can see em being even less of an issue.

Lone Monkey
25-10-2012, 15:13
Unfortunately, "always hitting the side/rear armour" fixes are going to run into a brick wall - a flying brick, called a stormraven.

That's why he suggested rear armor while zooming. To represent not being able to make the most of facings while going so fast and relying on your speed to keep you safe. I do like your take on the 10/10/10 when zooming better. Makes sense and clears things up much more nicely.


I'll be honest i'v not had much trouble with flyers yet in 6th, if you hit em they die like everything else. Mind you i'v not faced vendetta or necron croissant spam yet. Only the odd helldrake and storm raven.

If i had stuff with skyfire (which i'm now looking at) then i can see em being even less of an issue.

Lucky for you then :) Once you get hit with numerous flyers it can quickly become overwhelming to deal with.

damiengore
25-10-2012, 16:56
Fliers are over rated, seriously it's just a flying vehicle that can and does not arrive till turn 4. If you want to spend a ton of points on something that doesnt score or deny and may or may not show up,do so.
All my experience with them has been comical actually, most of the time they show up late, do minimal damage, go into a dive and the go back into reserves!
Admittedly the most I have faced is 2 but if you want to invest a grand to try and buy a win button go ahead, some dude with an officer of the fleet, quad gun, vendetta and hydra will nuke your lame butt back wence it came.
Most over rated, over blown, over whined topic out there!

Lone Monkey
25-10-2012, 17:25
Well obviously some people have some issues or different thoughts on the matter than you do, otherwise it wouldn't come up like it does. Fortunately, for you, it seems that your experiences thus far have been rather minor in the impact they can have. I will have to disagree though with the level of absolutes you place on the matter. With reserves coming in on a 3+ the odds of them not showing up until turn 4 isn't that high (though it is indeed still possible) and when you couple that with multiple flyers the chances of getting at least one on turn 2 are pretty good. Also, not everyone has access to an Officer of the Fleet, a Vendetta or a Hydra. I mean sure there are allies, but that's a bit of an investment both dollar and point-wise to counter one facet of the game. Plus not everyone is going to want to ally Guard into their forces. The point of the topic was to discuss the general implementation of flyers in a "what if...?" style thought, not how to counter what they are now.

igwarlord
26-10-2012, 04:13
if you got an offier of the fleet, a quad gun, a vendetta, and a hydra I will probably bring in about 3-4 flyers with my reserve rolls (since i spent a grand for a "win" buton as you put it.) then your quad gun may get 1 flyer. the other 2 will destroy the quad gun and the hydra and you will have just a vendetta.
unless i got 4 flyers then thats gone too.

Chem-Dog
26-10-2012, 06:30
With respect to the rear-shot mechanic, Dropships and Ground Support craft would be more robustly armoured in their ground-facing areas, it makes sense if you're flying into a combat zone to insert/evacuate troops or to lend fire support to ground elements. i would be tempted to leave them more vulnerable to interceptor type aircraft without making it any easier for ground troops to engage them. It could be worked into a nifty way of turning aircraft choice into something akin to paper/scissors/stone where each has advantages over the others in certain respects and weakness in other areas.
Sadly this does mean things like Valks and Stormravens would retain their well armoured hides, but it wouldn't be so bad, perhaps, if a fighter/interceptor were always able to score rear-hits thanks to it's angle of attack (steep dive, out of the sun or something).
There's definitely scope for expanding and modulating the effects of Aircraft in the game, but at the potential risk of gradually turning 40K into an air-combat game with associated ground elements



if you got an offier of the fleet, a quad gun, a vendetta, and a hydra I will probably bring in about 3-4 flyers with my reserve rolls (since i spent a grand for a "win" buton as you put it.) then your quad gun may get 1 flyer. the other 2 will destroy the quad gun and the hydra and you will have just a vendetta.
unless i got 4 flyers then thats gone too.

To fit those Guard bits into any army (as allies or a part of a larger IG force) one would have to spend 500 points and include very little in the way of upgrades. So yes, your twice-as-expensive flying circus might obliterate the air defences (assuming they can come on in one big lump and avoid being being dispatched piecemeal) but at the cost of your ground forces being unsupported.

Personally I'd take a goodly quantity of Heavy Weapon Support squads and apply healthy dose of Bring Itt Down while you've spent a turn neutralising the 75 point Hydra I'll be drawing a bead with six soon-to be twin linked Lascannons/Autocannons, the very same ones that have been pounding your ground elements for the last 3-4 turns because they have been so heavily outgunned due to budget cuts made to support you commander's love for flying contraptions ;)

Lone Monkey
26-10-2012, 13:18
With respect to the rear-shot mechanic, Dropships and Ground Support craft would be more robustly armoured in their ground-facing areas, it makes sense if you're flying into a combat zone to insert/evacuate troops or to lend fire support to ground elements.

Yeah, that is something I had considered and makes complete sense. Herein lies a slippery slope though as we would be trying to implement real world into 40k land, which like you said would shift us towards an aircraft game with some dudes on foot. I think the zooming flyers being 10/10/10 would be a really simple fix to represent just how fragile aircraft can be and accounts for how a solid hit could ground a craft based on knocking it out of control instead of blowing it up. Then when they enter hover-mode they could take advantage of their superior armor.

Daedalus81
26-10-2012, 15:15
Trying to divide flyers into specialized roles would require every book to have something in that role, which isn't realistic.

Anyone foolish enough to buy 9 vendettas should be laughed off when they declare they are quitting the game after GW bumps their point cost. I still have yet to see the fabled person who spent almost a grand for 2/3 of his army.

AlphariusOmegon20
26-10-2012, 18:05
Personally I think that the big disqualifier for being a flyer should be the existence of hover mode in your rules. You're not really a flyer at that point, you're more like a helicopter. Being more like a helicopter, you're not going to be capable of higher speeds true flyers are, thus you shouldn't have access to Zoom. That would be the start of a way to make a BIG distinction between the two categories.

Daedalus81
26-10-2012, 18:10
Personally I think that the big disqualifier for being a flyer should be the existence of hover mode in your rules. You're not really a flyer at that point, you're more like a helicopter. Being more like a helicopter, you're not going to be capable of higher speeds true flyers are, thus you shouldn't have access to Zoom. That would be the start of a way to make a BIG distinction between the two categories.

Sure, but this isn't real life.

Horus Lupercal
26-10-2012, 18:15
I don't think we should be able to hit flyers in assault at all. I know they are difficult to take down at the moment as it is but hell, they are hard to take down in reality.

Cthell
26-10-2012, 18:16
Sure, but this isn't real life.

Even if it was, the Harrier, F35B, V-22, and Yak41 would all like a word with you

Vaktathi
26-10-2012, 19:03
Too many flyers have too high an AV, I'd reduce most of the AV12 flyers to AV11, AV10 should really be the standard for most aircraft.


Additionally, yeah, there needs to be a Gunship rule so that you don't have ground attack aircraft excellent at interception roles, and likewise interceptor aircraft really shouldn't be effective ground attack aircraft. I'd probably swap out the text of "Strafing Run" and say that any aircraft with this rule engages ground targets at full BS but other aircraft only as snap-shots, while having and change the "Interceptor" text to apply to aircraft intended to engage other aircraft and allow firing at full BS and against ground targets only as snap-shots and having a better Jink ability against other aircraft, and then getting rid of the silly text in the Skyfire rule forcing AA guns to engage ground targets only with snapshots.

That'd much more clearly define roles for aircraft, make AA weapons more all around useful as half of the time they sit there useless, and we'd have fewer issues with aircraft in general. One could apply the above rules instead to specific weapons, like on the DE -raven fighter, it's missiles could have "Strafing Run" while its lances are "Interceptor" or the like.

Lone Monkey
26-10-2012, 21:30
@ Vaktathi - What you said right there was pretty well what we were getting at. With just a few simple tweaks, much of the abusive nature of flyers could be mitigated by that.

Xeen
26-10-2012, 23:00
I have not had much experience with flyers, but to me it seems that the biggest problem with flyers is when people can field to many of them, which is really IG and Crons. I think the simplest fix would be to state that flyers and units in flyers count towards your total number of reservable units, and then it would not be a legal build for anyone to take more than 50% of their units as flyers or in flyers.

Also, I don't think that having flyers as a dedicated transport is practical for the game outside of apocolypse. The necron transport should be a fast attack slot.

If you made these changes I think it would really help to mitigate the flyer issue in standard games. Also I agree the AV12 on flyers is too high, and the vendetta is to low in points.

Having dedicated attack/bombers and interceptors/fighters would be cool, but I don't think that alone fixes the issues with to many flyers on the board.

Grocklock
27-10-2012, 11:03
Flyers to me offer up an interesting challenge in the new rules.
And is something which I think is a blessing in 40k. There should be elimemts of an opponents army list which you find hard to deal with. There is an unhealthy amount of attempts to fix things that don't need fixing.

There was an old article written about the then new fourth edition Ork codex which talk about how the designer was readressing the orks. He spoke about how he was responding to people's wishes to make orks better. During the article he said people where complaining that orks could not deal with tanks, his response was tough. You have tools which are not going to do the job by themselves but a combination of them will work.

Back to the points about flyers. As they are they provide a challenge both to use and defeat. Some armies such as orks, tau, necrons and guard have some very easy answers to flyers. The other armies have tools that can bring them down but not a disisive tool. A one click if you will.
No army should have all the tools.

Lone Monkey
27-10-2012, 15:25
Agreed that no army should have all the tools, but I also feel that there is a definite case here where some armies have a really big toolbox full of and some others only have a screwdriver. Don't get me wrong in all this, I don't think the game is broken or anything. I just feel that there are some elements that are carried over from older books that don't fit well in the 6th Ed battlefield. I love that fact that flyers made it into the game, I just feel that certain things can be easily abused where a majority of other can't easily deal with it.

Damocles8
27-10-2012, 15:42
I love the idea of rear armor for zoomign flyers, don't agree on the limited firing abilities, as the battlespace that we play in isn't really condusive to differences in fighter and attack aircraft targeting abilities.

chrisloomis13
27-10-2012, 16:17
1 or 2 flyers is fine, and perhaps flyers should have their own section of the force org chart like fortifications. The problem does come in when you get to 3 or more roughly. I've only had 2 games like that, the first was 3 valks, the 2nd was 2 valks, thunderbolt, and avenger. I quickly typed out the out comes below if you care to read, but staying on topic, I think you could borrow something from battlefleet gothic. Its easier to hit something moving directly at you, then if it passes you. So while in the front arc you can use normal BS, maybe even the back arc, but snap fire otherwise. Anything with skyfire or interceptor still uses full BS, but gets +1 in the front arc. Overall I am happy flyers are in the game now. Also would give you those cinematic scenes as the squad is getting strafed and the plane is coming right at them, the lascannon can take it out. I guess an alternative would be to giving a bonus to the squad that was shot at, like a death or glory type shot, at full BS.

first game, we (it was a doubles, get to know 6th edition event when it first released) won b/c of first blood and they couldn't knock my allies' plague marines off the objective. and it was extreme luck, this kid rolled something like 7+ feel no pain rolls, getting shot from all 3 valks and a battle psycher squad.

2nd game, first with my new chaos dex was a draw b/c his avenger was able to knock a unit off an objective and the game ended on 5, 1 objective a piece, he had first blood, but I killed his warlord. Again I felt lucky for this outcome b/c if the game had gone on his St. Celestine may of got back up, after staying down for 3 straight turns.

Lone Monkey
27-10-2012, 16:28
the 2nd was 2 valks, thunderbolt, and avenger.

I wanna play where you play! Love to see pretty FW models on the board.

Back on topic. The BFG facing take is an interesting one and does reflect a mechanic that GW has used in the past. Good call!

Formerly Wu
27-10-2012, 16:47
There's two issues here. One is that current flyer rules don't make a lot of sense. The other is that spamming flyers is strong in the current meta. Let's not break flyers by throwing down nerf after nerf in an attempt to "fix the meta," since that will be modified by player tactics and new codices.

My fixes:

Flyers no longer have the Skyfire special rule.

Change the relevant special rules as follows:



Skyfire: Apply to individual flyer weapons as appropriate.
Strafing Run: No longer gives +1 BS against ground targets. A weapon (or model) with both the Skyfire and Strafing Run special rules may fire at all targets at full BS (unless it is firing Snap Shots). Add/remove to existing models as appropriate.
Interceptor: Remove synergy with Skyfire. Add/remove to existing models as appropriate.


All future flyers have a max AV of 11. Heldrake and IG flyers drop to AV11 (perhaps re-point Heldrake to compensate). Stormraven/eagle remain AV12.

I think that would solve 90% of people's flyer issues.

AlphariusOmegon20
27-10-2012, 16:57
Even if it was, the Harrier, F35B, V-22, and Yak41 would all like a word with you

There's always a few exceptions to every rule. Those are the rare exceptions here.

rcal13
04-11-2012, 23:03
So here is my problem, I have been working on an air cav graud army for over two years look at my log you will see the date below. When 6th came out my ground forces stop working like I played them and could no longer have a all helo army. I &ave played 1 game @ 2ooo pts with 2 valks 2 vendettas ;d 2 vultures yes this is a lot of air but it went down easer now the in 5th. People are more ready for it. The firing on rear armor is a dumb idea. Landers arw going to be bult to take small arms fire. I think that as 6th contines yes there will be some who take flyers but like me that cuts into my ground troops. Just fouces on removing the ground troops and you will auto win if I don't have a model on the table.

Sons of Lorgar
05-11-2012, 16:47
Flyers counts towards 'models on table' aswell you know.

shakedown47
05-11-2012, 16:53
I personally don't mind flyers. I don't take any vehicles for them to pop, and apart from the Heldrake my troops haven't been too worried about being shot at from above. Also, against gimmicky lists like vendetta spam or necron air, 5/6 missions have me feeling pretty smug since my opponent's scoring units are so drastically outnumbered and outgunned by my own that victory is almost assured. To that end, I would say that is my main gripe with an over-abundance of flyers: I like for both my opponent and myself to have a fun time, and that's hard to achieve when I walk all over his ground troops while he moves six or seven shiny yet ineffectual toys around the board.

Blinder
05-11-2012, 19:02
The only real concern I have with dropping flyers into roles is that it potentially just makes things worse while a lot of armies are still pretty limited on their flyer defense... armies that get a fighter can blast other flyers but if your flyer becomes biased towards ground attack you may have just lost your only remotely efficient form of air defense. If the rules from the new Aeronautica and wherever else FW has flyers/AA suddenly became errata for the GW books and the FW products suddenly became available as readily as the GW branded kits I could see it working (then there's enough variety that even if everyone doesn't have one of everything (which IMO is best anyway), everyone at least "probably" can both *use* flyers and *effectively* defend against them much as you'd currently defend against heavy armor) but not with just the current mix.

Also... the scope of the fights represented in "normal" 40k should probably only see gunships hanging around for any significant amount of time, anyway. Perhaps zooming flyers (since that's where the real pain comes into play) need to have their turning ability halved (so, 45 degrees for most instead of 90) and their minimum move bumped up to the full 36" unless they just arrived from reserves (or ongoing reserves), in which case they can do the current 18-36. That way if they want to be hard to hit, they really are making passes (and even with Vector Dancer have to circle the edges if they want to stay on the board rather than just line up a good shot), if the gunship types want to maximize their output they actually have a reason to carry that "Hover" rule. Flyers would need an exemption to the "anything in ongoing reserves dies if the game ends" rule though (actually I think that should be the case anyway...).

AA should still get some more teeth, and they need to stop making flying bricks with jink-free saves, etc., I guess the short of it is just that I'd prefer changes based on how people decide to use their flyer, rather than changes on how poeple *can* use their flyer. (s).