View Full Version : Pestilence: can it be dispelled?

05-08-2005, 20:26
Once cast, can pestilence, from the lore of nurgle, be dispelled?

It says that it is not a remain in play spell as such (whatever that means) but once cast, the unit will be affected or the rest of the game, unless dispelled. Its vague whether or not it means, 'if not dispelled when cast, the unit is affected for the rest of the game' or ;it is affected for the rest of the game, until the enemy can succsesfully dispel'.

I assume that because it does not say 'unitil' dispelled, that it works like rainlord. A unit is wet for the game, its not dispellable. I assume that once your infected its not dispellable.

So, can you dispell a spell during your magic phase that is not a 'remains in play' spell? What about something like mork save us (the 6+ ward one)? Same principle; is not a remain in play spell but will be in effect during the enemies magic phase.

06-08-2005, 14:44
Only spells classed as Remains in Play or Last One Turn are dealt with in the core rulebook. As such Pestilence does seem to fall outside of this scope.

It would appear that Pestilence is not so much a magical effect but triggers a mundane (if rather aggressive) disease.


07-08-2005, 12:40
At our club we play it that it can be dispelled in later turns ... That was my interpretation of the (vague) wording in the spell description. It's still a very nasty spell, no need to make it cheesy as hell ... And for the record, I'm the local Nurgle player. ;)

It says that it is not a remain in play spell as such (whatever that means)

It means that my Sorcerer can cast Pestilence on your Knights, and then in the following turn cast Pestilence on another unit as well, whilst reading Dispel Scrolls in your Magic Phase, and then he can get killed, and all that without any Pestilence being automatically dispelled ... That's why I figured this spell needs no horrible Rain Lord "can'tbedispelled" shannanigans. :cheese:

07-08-2005, 15:36
Additionally, he can cast Pestilence on the same unit again and again and again as well.

Gazak Blacktoof
07-08-2005, 17:51
There's nothing in the rules to suggest it can be dispelled at a later time so I'm not sure why anybody would think that it could.

Vaul's unmaking and the metal lore spells that have a similar effect can not be negated once cast. Squiggoth, are you all trying to tell me that I can re-make my items mid game, even though there is no suggestion this is possible in the wording for Vaul's unmaking?

Once you are infected with pestilence you're as good as dead.

07-08-2005, 20:10
Squiggoth is right, the spell can be dispelled in the rounds after it has been cast. There rules are pretty clear, so I thought.

As most other spells which RiP are dispelled when another spell is cast, the caster dies or some such thing, this spell still causes effect.

07-08-2005, 23:04
Its not an RiP spell.
It says that the unit, unless the spell is dispelled, is affected for the duration of the battle.

The debate (as i see it) is whether "unless" means 'untill' or or not.

I think unless means unless. If it isn't dispelled, the unit is affected for the battle.

As for casting it multiple times, you can but it doesn't increase the hits. If a unit suffers from pestilence then they take hits, pestilence the spell does not do the damage as it is not remains in play, i.e. you can't soak a unit twice!

08-08-2005, 04:24
No it can't- it causes a plague, not a magical effect once the plague has been set in. Also Nurgle's plagues (e.g. the rot) cannot be dispelled or cured in the fluff. One ytou have the rot you will day eventually and nothing short of divine intervention can save you.

08-08-2005, 20:51
As has been said, it can NOT be dispelled, it just mentions that you have ONE chance of dispelling it, if you fail, your unit is affected for the rest of the game.

If it would be dispellable, it would have the same wording as the new Commet of Cassandora, I suggest you take a look at that one, and, as has been said...

can I get my Magical Weapon of Über killyness back after two rounds by dispelling Vauls Unmaking?
Can I get my Greatweapons back on my Chaos Warriors?

NO, I cannot!!

09-08-2005, 09:52
It cannot be dispelled after its been cast. I'm very sure !!
You can dispell it when it is cast...


PS: Sorry I was in a huury and didn't finish the post....

11-08-2005, 11:49
It cannot be dispelled. I'm very sure !!

Of course it can be dispelled. It's just that when you kill the caster, or he flees the battle, that the spell will still work. You have to dispel it (even in following turns, not just the turn when it was cast) to have it dispelled.

11-08-2005, 13:38
Only have the card to look at. I agree the wording is somewhat ambiguous (Comet is some help it always was dispellable, but seems closer to this one!).

However given the nature of the spell and the damage it can potentially inflict I personally would say it can be subsequently dispellable.

11-08-2005, 13:52
"The comet is not a Remains in Play spell as such, although the spell can be dispelled while in play"

I can't see ANY similar wording in the rules for Pestilence.

11-08-2005, 13:59
Pestilence is described exactly as per the first part of your quote up to 'as such'' it then goes on to say 'the target is affected for the rest of the game unless Pestilence is dispelled'.

The interpretation of that last part is where the query lies. It can obviously mean 'unless it was dispelled as it was being cast'. However if the phrase were to mean that, it would have been unnecessary; just leave it at 'the target is affected for the rest of the battle'. In my view the only reason for that addition is to say that it can be dispelled subsequently.

11-08-2005, 20:15
I wouldn't go by the "they wouldn't have put it in if it wasn't neccasary" arguement. GW is notorious for poor words choice and including things unnecassary (my favorite is in the Tau book, where it says you can't have more than 50 points from the armory, yet, if you buy every single item it doesn't reach 50 :))

12-08-2005, 08:01
I can agree that the way it is worded leaves much to be desired. However given that (in theory) an awful lot of damage could be done players turn after players turn (which goes very much against this edition' philosophy re magic) and given the flow of words and the way it reads, then I would incline to the view that it is dispellable in subsequent turns.

12-08-2005, 10:05
i would say that yes it can be stopped, as in the nurlges rot special bit it says it cant be stopped once cast!

12-08-2005, 10:32
It would be pretty useless for an 11+ spell if you could dispel it later on, falmes of the phoniex attacks every model in the unit on ever increaseing strength for less casting value, curse of years also attacks everone in the unit for 11+ cast. This does D6 Str3 admittly in both people's phase.

It seems that the remains in play spells say remains in play until the sorceror chooses to end it, it is dispelled, he attempts to cast another spell or is slain (so any of the above stop spell)

Comet of casendova says "not remains in play as such but can be dispelled in subsequent turns" (so can be dispelled but killing the wizard does nothing to stop it)

Pestilence "not remains in play and the target unit is affected for the rest of the battle unless displelled" (so nothing stops it if it is successfully cast the first time, their is no clause like comet saying can be dispelled in later turns)

This makes sense as a pay back for the high casting value of the spell as otherwise it isn't in the same league as other high level spells like black horror, curse of years etc which eat units in a single turn

12-08-2005, 10:33
If you compare the comet to NR
They are both not counted as remains in play spells, that means that it will keep happening if the scorceror that cast it dies.... also the scorceror can cast other spells. For the comet it states it can be dispelled.

If you then look to rain lord it specifically states that the unit is wet for the entire battle. and also specifically states that it is not a RiP and if you fail the original dispel then thats it. (as i remember anyway!)

It doesnt state that for nurgles rot... therefore can be dispelled later on.

I think it would be highly beardly to claim that because it doesnt specifically state it cant be dispelled. You just have to use common sense and look at the other spell descriptions for precedent.

Peteratwar raises a good point as well. Why point out that keeps effecting the unit until dispelled? as he rightly pointed out..... if it could only be dispelled on the original attempt then why have the last line in at all?

12-08-2005, 11:20
The key words are 'unless dispelled'. As I said before the words are ambiguous and could be taken either way, be it dispelled 'as it is cast' (not mentioned) or 'subsequently' (not mentioned). Flames of Phoenix is of course a true RIP spell with the same casting value and can do worse damage (eventually!) if not dispelled. Rain Lord is an irritant but your troops are still there and the concept is different.

As you say to get some guidance until there is an official ruling one can look at other spells and consider the whole concept of magic & how it is meant to be working (in so far as we understand it) from GW's point of view. It was always clear that the impact of magic was to be lessened.

Again one has to consider in connection with this the chance of being cast with IR. Sure, it will work for the turn it was cast (and at the start of the next player's turn) but not to be able to dispel subsequently a damage causing spell again seems to be against the concept of how magic is deployed and used within the game.

Given all that with the ambiguity of the wording, my preference is to say that it can be dispelled subsequently.

12-08-2005, 20:47
But the spell says that it doesn't remain in play, but the unit is affected for the battle.

The spell isn't in play, what are you dispelling?

Can you dispell the -1 toughness spell? (scabs)
Can you dispell the level one spell? Can you get the wound back? (buboes)

The spell isn't in play anymore, theres nothing to be dispelled; the spell is cast, the unit is 'affected'. Remains in play spells remain in play! This spell doesn't, the effect lingers.

Plus, other than that the biggest damage is d6 str4. Many lores have that as their first spell. I cant imagine having an 11+ cast spell that in all probability will only do 2d6 strength 3. (BTW, i know this has absolutly no bearing on a rules disccussion but I am personally a little disenchanted with the whole lore's damage potention.) you need an 11+ to get str 3 hits off?

12-08-2005, 22:06
Except beeing str3 it also has the little "no armour saves allowed" thingie... which kind of is the hole point with the spell.

The way we play it and interprent the rule in our gaming group is that - yes it can be dispelled later on. Of course as always the rules leaves alot open for discussion.

12-08-2005, 22:56
see scabs says nothing about being dispelled, but that does, as its very powerfull

13-08-2005, 09:35
"the target unit is affected for the rest of the battle unless dispelled"

If you read the entire phrace, I think it is pretty clear that it can't be dispelled

13-08-2005, 09:44
"Unless dispelled, the unit is affected for the REST of the game"

If you read the entire phrace, I think it is pretty clear that it can't be dispelled


If you read the entire phrase, it IS pretty clear that it CAN be dispelled.

Otherwise, why would it say 'unless dispelled', without reference to 'when it is cast'.

13-08-2005, 09:46
Wouldn't they have stated "Untill dispelled" if that was the case?

I think REST OF THE BATTLE is pretty damn clear on what happens unless you dispell it when it is cast

13-08-2005, 21:19
I reason it like this: It can be dispelled.

It's slightly complicated to explain but....basically they are saying the sorceror can cast other spells, etc, without it dispelling pestilence like it was a RiP. Once the spell is cast, it will affect the unit as though RiP, but without the normal RiP rules. It can be dispelled normally.

13-08-2005, 23:14
Yes, thats the one side of the argument.

My question is: what are you dispelling? There is no spell! Its not a remains in play spell; the spell is cast and it affects a unit. Fireball is cast and the unit is affected. Pestilence is cast and it affects the unit; its effect is that the unit take hits every turn. The spell doesn't remain in play, so what are you dispelling?

14-08-2005, 14:36
An instant cure?

14-08-2005, 15:11
I think we can safely say "It could be worded clearer". :P

You have a point Izram, if it's just a disease there is nothing to dispel, but presumably the disease is some kind of magical one.

Either way, unless GW clears this one up, we could argue it all night.

14-08-2005, 16:17
it's clear that it cannot be dispelled! i talked about this with one GW staff member, and we came to conclusion that it cannot be dispelled... so if getting it with
irrestible force, that sucks :P

14-08-2005, 16:24
well how come scabs does not mention it then...

it is a very powerfull spell for you not to be able to dispell it, as you take hits at the begging of each magic phase... ie both players,

14-08-2005, 16:39
Shouldn't nurgles rot be powerful?

I know there is not real way of resolving this, i really just wanted to see how other people felt about it. Im pretty sure the general consensus is that GW needs to word their rules better instead of having intent and taking it for granted that everyone knows what they mean.

14-08-2005, 17:23
oh yes that is soo true,

i expect if you were to go into any GW store you would get both answers from different members of staff!

Soul of Iron
18-08-2005, 14:09
I would have to agree with Izram on this topic.

The way I see it is that the sorcerer casting Pestilence is using the winds of magic to draw nurgle's rot from the warp to infect a target unit. The enemy mage has one chance to stop the spell, severing the sorcerer's connection to the warp and preventing the plague from setting in. If he/she fails to stop it, then it stops being a spell and turns into a disease that will slowly destroy the infected unit.

The fact that the spell hits at the top of both players phases and allows now armor saves are the parts that rubs most people's hair the wrong way. But the effect is very random. It may only kill 12 models over the span of 6 turns (if successfully cast on the first turn). It also has the potential to drop 36 models. Being that you still have to roll to wound after determining the number of hits, it's still a 50/50 chance to kill T3 models.

That's not too powerful.

~edited for spelling~

18-08-2005, 17:05
i talked about this with one GW staff member

Never trust a red-shirt!

I have to admit that the wording is poor and would like it to be clarified (a more comprehensive classification of spell types in the basic rulebook would have helped) by a real design studio member, preferably the author himself.

If I had to judge it to one way or the other, I would proclaim it as dispellable, though.