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RunepriestRidcully
20-08-2010, 12:33
I started early 3rd, but have been picking up 2nd edition codexs and white Dwarfs, and was wondering, does anyone else miss when they could actually customise their charecter, not just choose options, it seems the ability to give your charecter all sorts of wacky and interesting equipment has gone, personally I would like it to be like fantasy, ie you have a list of stuff available to all armies and then each codex has it's own special ones, yes I know it is like 2nd edition, but I just feel it could be more interesting, what do you think?

Zweischneid
20-08-2010, 12:40
What are you talking about? There are gazillion of options to customize your characters.

Just take a look at the Space Marine Captain say.. the full range of Marine Armour, Bike, Jump Pack, relic blades, digital weapons, grenades, etc.., etc.., etc... . There is little in the Space Marine fluff these guys actually cannot take.

What more options could you possibly want? Why should there be some piece of equipment that can be carried by either Orks, Nids, Necrons or Space Marines? What would that add?

pringles978
20-08-2010, 12:42
or just look at chaos lords and daemon princes. my daemon prince of khorne can come with wings or without!! thanks gav!!

Gingerwerewolf
20-08-2010, 13:03
Yes I do, I really miss it. I miss the way you could make a character to suit the way you played rather than having to pick an Army for the way you played.

Space Marines are almost as good as they used to be, but Chaos Space Marines arent as good especially the Daemon Princes.

I mean the DPs are supposed to represent the myriad facets of chaos, but they all are exactly the same...

And if it wasnt for the old ways of customising your characters then Tycho from the Blood Angles wouldnt exist. First ever 2nd Ed 40k Battle Report, marines v's orks was Blood Angels Captain Tycho v's some Xenos Ork Filth!

Badruk
20-08-2010, 13:07
Marneus Calgar on Jump Pack!!!

AFnord
20-08-2010, 13:24
Many of the modern books offers almost as many options as the older books. One of the problem with the old customisable characters were that even though it might have looked like they had a lot of options, there were often very few that were viable and/or there were other limitations in place. There was a time when GW cut down on the amount of options (when we got these rather limited books (limited in amount of different options), like orks & chaos), but we have far more options in the modern books than we had during most of 4th edition, and more viable options than we had in 3rd edition.

RunepriestRidcully
20-08-2010, 13:37
whilst a captain has decent range of options, wat about chaplins, apothocaries, Techmarines and Librarians? And the chaos codex definatly needs more options, though the daemonhunter codex has it's armoury, which is good because of the options, my main point is the armoury in aech codex had so many options it was quite nice, also look in the Imperial Guard codex, Techpriests cannot a repulser field, to get an Invun save when they should all have them, I know the captain and his equivilent in other marine codex's has good options, but most other charecters have lost a lot of options, and yes some may have not been the most competitive thing, but does that matter, not everyone is all about winning, and some just want to add a bit of flavour to their charecters.

DarthSte
20-08-2010, 13:39
I play (amongst other things) Witch-hunters, so I still have my very customisable characters. Yay.

daboarder
20-08-2010, 13:39
wow, you know you've been in this hobby WAY to long when people are talking about the "more is less" period as an old phenomenon

mrln68
20-08-2010, 13:51
Many of the modern books offers almost as many options as the older books.

None of the modern books offer half as many options as the older books. I think 2nd Ed. was too much though. I like 3rd/early 4th. For my money, it offered the best balance between very customizable and very fast.

I liked the armories, I liked to be able to customize my veteran sergeants (even though they were a points sink most of the time). If you compare the 50 some odd choices you could snag from there and compare them to the 20 or so options for big troops choices (SM Captains or Masters and such) or the 8 options available to a sergeant...nope, not even a close comparison.

Lamoron
20-08-2010, 14:00
I certainly don't miss 2nd edition, but I would love to be able to bring unique characters of my own creation. Imperial Guard commanders have access to orders, but everyone get's the same orders, except for special characters. Why not make these orders purchasable by the basic command squad instead.

There will always be abilities that are just "better", but in a system where you purchase orders for your commander, you can have the weaker powers reduced in cost and see them used anyway. I like Commander Chenkov, but I would have loved him if I could have made him myself, named him myself, and not have to tell everyone that "this miniature is actually captain chenkov".

This applies to all races ofcourse, and SMs should be able to pay for bringing Sternguard as troops instead og taking a SC, and so on and so forth. Most players who miss the old days just miss the possibility of figuring out how to combine gear to make the ultimate killer, but a whole bunch of us would just like to have our "own" characters instead of carbon copy specials.

/Lamoron

Zweischneid
20-08-2010, 14:07
I certainly don't miss 2nd edition, but I would love to be able to bring unique characters of my own creation. Imperial Guard commanders have access to orders, but everyone get's the same orders, except for special characters. Why not make these orders purchasable by the basic command squad instead.

There will always be abilities that are just "better", but in a system where you purchase orders for your commander, you can have the weaker powers reduced in cost and see them used anyway. I like Commander Chenkov, but I would have loved him if I could have made him myself, named him myself, and not have to tell everyone that "this miniature is actually captain chenkov".

This applies to all races ofcourse, and SMs should be able to pay for bringing Sternguard as troops instead og taking a SC, and so on and so forth. Most players who miss the old days just miss the possibility of figuring out how to combine gear to make the ultimate killer, but a whole bunch of us would just like to have our "own" characters instead of carbon copy specials.

/Lamoron

I never quite got this logic to be honest.

I mean, you like playing in the 40th century grimdark future. You like having to fight for the Imperium of Man. You enjoy fighting against foes and aliens served to you by the writers of the Game and background? But you balk at using the background of one miniature because it's not your own? Why do you have a problem with using Chenkov as Chenkov but do not have a problem with using a Leman Russ as a Leman Russ? Or infact the Imperial Guard as the Imperial Guard?

If you wanna "make it your own", I'd do it all the way. If you enjoy 40K, play 40K! The latter comes with a diverse and fantastical background including such diverse things as "Meltagun", "Leman Russ", "Eldar", "Eye of Terror", or "Commander Chenkov". None of those is any more or any less "yours" or any more or any less deserving of "personalization" than the other.

This arguing that "I like Chenkov but don't like the name Chenkov" about a piece of background fluff to a piece of plastic doesn't make any more sense than "I like Meltaguns but don't like the name Meltagun". It's all just the same intangible, fantasy gossamer floatsam from the big imagination machinery producing 40K background.

ehlijen
20-08-2010, 14:14
Me, I'd rather have fewer options with each actually having a point and none being outright silly (terminator scout seargents with mastercrafted sniper rifles?), then bring back the armouries just to take up space and have everyone use the same combos anyway.

Malorian
20-08-2010, 14:16
I really miss it as one of my favorite things about 40k used to be all the options I had for my 'boss'.

Once they took the page of options away I began losing interest.

marv335
20-08-2010, 14:22
I've never really seen the point of having 30-40 different options, but only ever seeing 15-20 getting used.

Shadowheart
20-08-2010, 15:22
Terminology, people. Creating is when you make something. Customising is when you change something. You don't want to do that, you want to follow a system. Heck, you don't even want to use a system that isn't currently approved by GW.

Okay, I'm being a bit harsh, but it bugs me when people talk about point-and-click as though it's a creative process. It's not like homebrewing some suitable rules would be all that much work.

And in this case it's really not GW's fault. Their customers by and large seem to demand a balanced set of rules suitable for tournament and pick-up play. That's not compatible with having lots of characterful, whacky little rules and sheer endless combinations of options.

Anyway, one option is always available to you, and that's to not stick to GW's rules.

Grand Master Raziel
20-08-2010, 15:42
You want to see lack of options? Try Codex: Dark Angels. It's not so bad for the Company Masters, but Sergeants have a grand total of 4: power fist, power weapon, plasma pistol, meltabombs. DA Sergeants can't even take a storm bolter!

Regarding the armories of old, I think that was, in general, a better way to go, if only because it took less space to print one armory, then simply note which characters got access to the armory instead of printing the same list of options for every IC and Sergeant in the book. On the flipside, the current system has the advantage of allowing the player to decide what his units are upgraded with (including armory options, as appropriate) without having to flip back and forth through the book, so in that respect it's more convenient.

As far as seeing the same options used all the time goes, I think a part of that is because a lot of the options were overpriced, and some were downright stupid. Take combi-weapons, for instance. Back in the day, people generally built SM characters for maximum attacks, which meant either pistol-ccw combo or paired L-claws. Taking a gun other than a bolt pistol was foolish. Plasma pistols were (and are) overpriced and might kill your own guy, bolters would cost you an attack and prevent your char from charging when he fired it, combi-weapons were overpriced and cost you an attack, and storm bolters cost you an attack. So, no one in their right mind would take any of those, save possibly the storm bolter (single L-claw + storm bolter wasn't and isn't such a bad build).

Then, there was the invulnerable save situation. Everyone wanted (and wants) their ICs to have invulnerable saves, because there's a lot out there that negates armor saves, and it sucks when your army's big hero (and the supposed avatar of the player on the table) gets ignominously ganked because he got hit by something denying his armor save and he got no save at all. Chaplains came with the 4++ for their base price, but for Captains and Librarians, the iron halo was almost mandatory. That ruled out the rest of the relics in the 4th edition SM armory, because you could only pick one item from that category per army - unless you got clever.

Personally, I really only miss two things from the 4th ed SM armory: the adamantine mantle and the ability to take storm shields as a low-cost alternative to iron halos. I hit on the idea that ICs needed the 4++ in close combat much more than they needed it against shooting. You could always hide an IC in a squad, and you could usually count on getting a cover save, but you couldn't pull such shenanigans in assault. Taking a storm shield did cost an attack, but it was 15pts less than the iron halo, and didn't take up that one-per-army relic, which freed up the adamantine mantle. When I ran my Chapter Master, he hit the table with thunder hammer, storm shield, terminator honors, and adamantine mantle. I should have given him arty armor, too, but I could never bring myself to spend the points. Anyhow, I made a cool conversion for him, which I now can't use (playing Codex: Dark Angels). I could use him with Codex: Space Marines, but I'd be a bit leery of gambling on that 3++ instead of having a 4++ and immunity to ID. I'd rather take the relic blade, which strikes at initiative.

I've also got a Sergeant with a power weapon and a power fist, which I can't use anymore. He was for my Command Squad with Furious Charge. Used a sergeant w/o a fist in that squad till it got tarpitted for a whole game by a Dreadnought it couldn't touch. Wanted a fist, but also didn't want to give up the S5 I5 power weapon. Converted a guy with both PW and PF in a cool running pose. Oh well, I'm sure anyone who plays long enough is going to wind up with some retired minis.

Heh, right now, I bet there's at least one Eldar player out there thinking "Oh yeah, I weep for your problem, honkus! Me and the eight total options my armory used to give me!" Just throwing that out there to keep things in perspective. Not everyone got a gazillion options.

On the flipside, too much customization could and did create broken results. Case in point: Codex: Chaos Space Marines. The evil that could be done with Daemon Princes, was well known and bad enough. It was not fun to fight against DPs that could take on practically your whole army singlehandedly. DPs stole the show, but that wasn't the only problem with what you could do with characters in that book. What you could do with Aspiring Champions was pretty sick, too. A single Ass Champ could take a master crafter power weapon, spiky bits, daemonic mutation and daemonic strength and still have 30pts to spend on upgrades. You wind up with a S5 A3 Squad leader that can reroll 2 rolls to hit. Throw him in a squad with Furious Charge, and a lot of loyalist SM ICs were hard-pressed to match him - and it didn't help that, as a squad leader, he couldn't be targeted, giving him a possible total of 19 (though 9 was a more likely number) ablative wounds! Basically, reading the old 3.5 dex would reliably **** me off. That kind of customization, we can do without, thank you very much.

Anyway, I used to be snobbish about using special characters, but I've come around to a different view. Check out my avatar - that's my counts-as-Sammael. I came around to my current view slowly. Started when Codex: Dark Angels came out. Initially, I had a very strong negative reaction to that book. However, seeing as it was presumed to be the wave of the future for SM armies, I started playing armies that could be made with Codex: Dark Angels - 10 man Tac Squads, heavy and special, no Traits - I figured I'd get ahead of the learning curve. After playing that way for a while, I figured I might as well just start using Codex: Dark Angels and get the free frags, kraks, and bps. Once I did that, I started eyeing the builds you could make with Sammael and Belial. I already had a perfectly good Terminator Captain with a pair of L-claws that could count-as Belial, but a guy on a jetbike was another matter entirely. I started toying with the idea of making a conversion for him, thought it would be neat to make one that worked on vectored thrust and lift rather than anti-gravity (the Imperium still understands these technologies, opens up the possibility of more appearing), started to get an idea of what I wanted it to look like, then one day plunged in and started building it. Took a while, easily the most ambitious conversion I've ever done, but it came out looking great, IMHO. More to the point, the process of making that conversion made me take ownership of the identity. He might count as Sammael, but as far as I'm concerned, he's Raphael, Master of the Night Angels Saber Company. Basically, Sammael stopped being Sammael for me, and became a template upon which I could overlay any identity I wanted. Now I look at other SCs the same way. Want a SC's abilities but don't want to use the SC? Work up a conversion, go counts-as!

mrln68
20-08-2010, 15:46
I mean, you like playing in the 40th century grimdark future. You like having to fight for the Imperium of Man. You enjoy fighting against foes and aliens served to you by the writers of the Game and background? But you balk at using the background of one miniature because it's not your own? Why do you have a problem with using Chenkov as Chenkov but do not have a problem with using a Leman Russ as a Leman Russ? Or infact the Imperial Guard as the Imperial Guard?

There is a difference between background (vehicles, races, units...) and characters. A lot of people actually enjoy the fluff - and enjoy expanding on the fluff. They write stories regarding their armies, the regiments they are from, the planets who supplied them, past campaigns that they fought in - lots of stuff. The background is easy to work with, however once the armory was removed...you lost a creative tool. Once the options like disciplines were removed from the IG and the equivalent was removed from Spacey Marines...a creative tool was lost.


Terminology, people. Creating is when you make something. Customising is when you change something. You don't want to do that, you want to follow a system. Heck, you don't even want to use a system that isn't currently approved by GW.

Okay, I'm being a bit harsh, but it bugs me when people talk about point-and-click as though it's a creative process. It's not like homebrewing some suitable rules would be all that much work.

The creative part is the background fluff for your army and making the minis on the table match what you write about them. While it isn't creative on the same level as creating a setting of your own - or a rules set of your own...it is still creating something, just as much as any of the Black Library authors are creating something when they write a book based on the 40K universe.


Heh, right now, I bet there's at least one Eldar player out there thinking "Oh yeah, I weep for your problem, honkus! Me and the eight total options my armory used to give me!" Just throwing that out there to keep things in perspective. Not everyone got a gazillion options.

That is where the old Craftworld Eldar Codex was nice. They allowed you to customize your army in a different way. I was disappointed with the 4th Ed. Eldar Codex too - not nearly as much as with the later 4th and now 5th Ed ones - but I felt that I lost a lot of the tools. For those who don't recall (or weren't playing at the time) you had a few special troops choices for each Craftworld and units were moved around depending on which you chose to play. Wraithlords and Wraithguard were troops for Iyanden - guardian squads were moved to Fast Attack and Heavy Support. Saim Hann had a special HQ choice, 6 fast attacks and only 3 troops. Biel tann moved all the Aspect warriors to troops and all the normal troops to Elites - they also had a special HQ choice. Ulthwe had the Black Guardians and Seer Councils. If you didn't want to play an established craftworld - you could use the normal Codex and play around with things.
_________

Kind of an aside, a long time ago I started playing 40K. In one of my armies, I had a lowly IG troop. He was nothing special but he was mine. He fought in many battles, and lost many of his friends and compatriots fighting Space Marines, Eldar Pirates and Orks. Throughout it all though, he managed to never die. After awhile I gave him a name...Private Pile (no...not creative either). When Second Edition came out - I decided that Private Pile should keep on fighting and I promoted him to Sergeant Pile. He continued to fight on, and now he had new weapons and equipment to use. It was great. From time to time he would be a part of an epic battle leading his squad to victory. Enter 3rd Ed. Sergeant Pile became Lt. Pile and he was equipped with various rewards for valor and used them well to lead his platoon. When 4th ed came along - Lt. Pile was promoted again to Colonel Pile. He was now in control of a whole Regiment - with a brigade as his personal body guard. He lead from the front in carapace armor wielding an ancient sword recovered from an Ork warlord. He had bionic replacements for his leg and always had his stogie smoking away as he barked out orders to maneuver the troops and call in artillery attacks.

5th Ed. comes along...and although I could name my commander Colonel (or maybe General by now) Pile - it wouldn't have the same feel as it did before.

biggreengribbly
20-08-2010, 15:51
I never quite got this logic to be honest.

I mean, you like playing in the 40th century grimdark future. You like having to fight for the Imperium of Man. You enjoy fighting against foes and aliens served to you by the writers of the Game and background? But you balk at using the background of one miniature because it's not your own? Why do you have a problem with using Chenkov as Chenkov but do not have a problem with using a Leman Russ as a Leman Russ? Or infact the Imperial Guard as the Imperial Guard?

If you wanna "make it your own", I'd do it all the way. If you enjoy 40K, play 40K! The latter comes with a diverse and fantastical background including such diverse things as "Meltagun", "Leman Russ", "Eldar", "Eye of Terror", or "Commander Chenkov". None of those is any more or any less "yours" or any more or any less deserving of "personalization" than the other.

This arguing that "I like Chenkov but don't like the name Chenkov" about a piece of background fluff to a piece of plastic doesn't make any more sense than "I like Meltaguns but don't like the name Meltagun". It's all just the same intangible, fantasy gossamer floatsam from the big imagination machinery producing 40K background.

Because Chenkov is a specific character, serving in a specific time period during which he was alive, in a specific string of campaigns and military actions with specific regiments from specific planets. In the quite likely event the army you are playing in no way intersects with that presumed history of the character known as Chenkov... why on earth Would you want him in your army? Because he represents an Archetype. Commander Chenkov is not the only officer in the Imperial Guard who has a callous disregard for his men's lives and a firm belief in the strategic benefit of human wave assaults.

Let's take an example. Let's say I'm playing an army I have themed around being the 47th Armageddon PDF Regiment based out of one of Hive Helsreach. Since my army is a pdf unit, and garrisons a hive city, it is fair to assume I'd have access to a large pool of underhive scum to conscript into militia units. Following on from that assumption it would be fair to assume that within my regimental command structure, there would be officers with a callous disregard for the lives of said militia units, who would expend them in brutal human-wave assaults... let's call the hypothetical officer Captain Meatgrinder for the sake of argument.

Sound like any particular Archetype we know?

There is NO earthly reason whatsoever that Commander Chenkov would occupy a position in the command structure of my hypothetical regiment. And yet I find myself in a position that the archetype represented by his special rules fit my own Captain Meatgrinder perfectly.

Explain to me how preferring to have special characters such as Chenkov, created to present an Archetypal character trait manifestation on the tabletop rather than any real sense of them being an unique and special taste of the setting itself, being presented in a form that you can add those self same archetypal traits to your Own characters that have a much stronger connection to the theme of the army you have chosen, rather than as a fixed statline representing an unique individual in the setting is remotely similar to choosing to ignore such vast tracts of background like common pieces of military equipment, areas of space occupying a large percentage of the total galactic real estate, or entire species.

Or are you suggesting that Chenkov really is an unique and special flower and is the only officer in the vastness of the Imperial Guard to utilise human wave tactics? That anybody who wants to add the flavour of his hugely generic recycling conscript wall special rule must therefore play the 9457th Vallhallan Combat Wombats or whatever unit Chenkov probably served the entirety of his career alongside, because 'if you want to play 40k, play 40k!'

Games Workshop actively encourage you to create your own armies, worlds, systems. To make your neon pink Space Marines with green polka dots a part of their setting. There are vast tracts of undocumented space because the Imperium, the Galaxy, the setting itself is a ******* big place. The world could not contain the volume of books that would be written if Games Workshop tried to document every planet, every Imperial Guard regiment, every officer to command a military unit in the nine thousand nine hundred and ninety-nine years the setting represents. But that's what they'd have to do, right? Because there's no way in hell Chekov is the only officer not to care about the lives of his men, but if you want to play 40k, you'd damn well better use Chekov as Chekov, right?

Am I getting through to you here? To suggest that in all those armies in all the worlds in all the galaxy over all the years, that Commander Chenkov is the only man to ever throw away units of conscripts is frankly insane. If someone suggested to me that in such an enormous setting where creativity within its boundaries is actively encouraged, that anyone who would rather have their own Captain Meatgrinder ordering to 'Send in the next wave' should either shut up and just use a generic character's statline, or collect an entirely different army from an entirely different area of space and time with an entirely different history, because apparently to do otherwise means they just aren't playing 40k and should stop fooling themselves I'd laugh in his face.

Then I'd go back to painting my lovingly converted Captain Meatgrinder miniature and his underhive scum conscript militia, who I guarantee to you will have no more in common with Captain Chekov and his Valhallan conscripts than Lieutenant Detour with his scout platoon and sword that has been in his Uphive Family since the Great Crusade, cavalry Sergeant Faceroll all haggard and pale from his Frenzon addiction, and Company First Sergeant Bossy have with their respective 'special characters'. Because until Archetypal special rules are treated as such rather than the traits of unique and special named snowflakes, I'm going to keep having no quandaries in abusing counts as until I'm blue in the face.

Shadowheart
20-08-2010, 15:55
The creative part is the background fluff for your army and making the minis on the table match what you write about them.
I don't think limited weapon options in the army lists stop you from doing that. Unless the crux of your background is "these guys have those guns and this doofus has that gizmo".

mrln68
20-08-2010, 16:18
The creative part is the background fluff for your army and making the minis on the table match what you write about them.

I don't think limited weapon options in the army lists stop you from doing that. Unless the crux of your background is "these guys have those guns and this doofus has that gizmo".

It doesn't affect the story - however it does affect making the minis match the story. Lots of people enjoy doing that. Take a stroll through the project logs from a few years back and you will see lots of it...pretty sure I am not the only one who does it.

The thing that I get a kick out of is that so many people are against having options...simple solution, don't take them. No sweat off your back. For people who do want options...if they aren't there, they can't take them - it does change their game. As far as less space, I think the current setup takes up more space per unit listing and they still have an "armory" (you just can't do anything with it) so there isn't any space saved from the old way of doing things.

Zweischneid
20-08-2010, 16:21
Sound like any particular Archetype we know?


Very long and emotional post there. Obviously you feel strongly about it. Yet, I think the examples you've given kinda illuminate my point to some degree.

If you're building your "47th Armageddon PDF Regiment" to mimick the "Chenkov Archetype" as you called, you're not being creative and "making it your own".

Yes, if the 40K was "real", the "archetype" embodied by "Chenkov" would exist a million times over. As a literary background to a miniature wargame however, there is no point in having that archetype more than once. Changing it to "47th Armageddon PDF Regiment" doesn't change the archetype and adds nothing unique or creative. It's just using different syllables for the same thing.

If you want to play with that archetype, it makes sense to have that archetype easily communicated across the board to your opponent, and Chenkov does that. All you need to do is say "it is, or it's like/counts-as Chenkov" and your opponent knows. If it'd be just a generic non-name, you'd need endless minutes to frame that to your opponent.

On the other hand, you might want to make something uniquely your own. But just doing a copy-and-paste of an existing "archetype" and putting new labels on it .. just because.. isn't doing that.

ChrisMurray
20-08-2010, 16:24
I oersonally hated armories, it was one of the main things that put me off Chaos in their last codex. I much prefere the current system of swapping a bolter for a plasma gun for example than the pay 10 pts for a lord, now work your way through several pages of items to add him, now go and try and model them all on your model. No thank you, keep it simple, keep it quick and easy, keep it fun.

mrln68
20-08-2010, 16:38
I oersonally hated armories, it was one of the main things that put me off Chaos in their last codex. I much prefere the current system of swapping a bolter for a plasma gun for example than the pay 10 pts for a lord, now work your way through several pages of items to add him, now go and try and model them all on your model. No thank you, keep it simple, keep it quick and easy, keep it fun.

Maybe it was just me - but I don't find flipping a page to be that much work. Pen, paper...5 minutes and you have a list. You still end up flipping a lot, just now you are flipping from the unit lists back to the full page write up to see what the special rules are that are attached to the squad. You are flipping over to see what the range, AP and strength of weapons are - not a huge change in terms of building a list.


If you want to play with that archetype, it makes sense to have that archetype easily communicated across the board to your opponent, and Chenkov does that. All you need to do is say "it is, or it's like/counts-as Chenkov" and your opponent knows. If it'd be just a generic non-name, you'd need endless minutes to frame that to your opponent.

Actually the explaining hasn't changed too much...honestly might be a bit worse now. Contrary to the vast majority of people who frequent Warseer (and other online forums), the vast majority of people who play 40K don't have a clue what is in someone else's codex. You have to explain what the SC is, what he does - what other special rules come into play. You still have to explain the stat lines when you go to roll for attacks or saves. You still have to explain equipment choices that aren't apparent.

Bunnahabhain
20-08-2010, 17:04
Yes.

Mainly as it is contributes towards the utterly, utterly awful layout of the newer codexs.

Reprinting the same list of options over an over again in each unit entry, whilst at the same time splitting the special rules, equipment etc for each unit between the army list, and the long unit entry is insane. If GW were using it to fine tune points and options between units- ie:
the BS3 troops get most special weapons cheaper than the BS4 ones,
sargents get a limited range of special stuff, whilst HQ level characters get the full list
Extra armour costs more on transports, as they get more use from it than shooty stuff

Then it would make sense. But they don't, so it is insane to mindlessly duplicate stuff.

I don't miss the overly long wargear lists, that were full of mainly useless stuff. A shorter list of useful options is better.

biggreengribbly
20-08-2010, 17:42
Very long and emotional post there. Obviously you feel strongly about it. Yet, I think the examples you've given kinda illuminate my point to some degree.

Actually, I just tend to get horribly carried away once I get the rant in me going :shifty:


If you're building your "47th Armageddon PDF Regiment" to mimick the "Chenkov Archetype" as you called, you're not being creative and "making it your own".

Yes, if the 40K was "real", the "archetype" embodied by "Chenkov" would exist a million times over. As a literary background to a miniature wargame however, there is no point in having that archetype more than once. Changing it to "47th Armageddon PDF Regiment" doesn't change the archetype and adds nothing unique or creative. It's just using different syllables for the same thing.

If you want to play with that archetype, it makes sense to have that archetype easily communicated across the board to your opponent, and Chenkov does that. All you need to do is say "it is, or it's like/counts-as Chenkov" and your opponent knows. If it'd be just a generic non-name, you'd need endless minutes to frame that to your opponent.

On the other hand, you might want to make something uniquely your own. But just doing a copy-and-paste of an existing "archetype" and putting new labels on it .. just because.. isn't doing that.

You agree that within the literary setting, the archetype embodied by Chenkov's special rules would exist a million times over (take a look at Chenkov's armoury entry from a moment. What equipment is he packing? Carapace armour, Power weapon, Frag grenades, Bolt Pistol. Nothing unique there. What makes Chenkov unique are his special rules)

You know what else exists millions of times over within the literary setting? Every generic unit that is considered the meat and potatoes of every codex army list. The difference is, working within the bounds of the Imperial Guard codex since that's what I have to hand - if you want to take a Mechanised Infantry Company, there is no Unique special character or named regiment or army list put forward required to Present the archetype in easily communicable format. You just buy Chimera's for all the relevant parts of the list.

Veteran squads. You have three archetypal unit upgrade patterns you can take on top of all the other loadout choices you make for the unit. Grenadiers could represent anything from Dark Age of Technology mesh armour to a crudely welded array of full plate from a Fuedal world. You're not forced to use 'counts as' from the get go to 'use different syllables for the same thing'. You're invited to approach the archetype embodied by the loadout you paid the points for in any way you choose. And it's no more difficult to communicate to your opponent that you took the 'Scout' upgrade than that the unit you just deployed is 'Sergeant Sneakies' Stealth Squad'.

Why if the meat and potatoes units of an army have, as a matter of course, access to non character specific upgrades to represent the combat roles their position in the military would imply, should your army theme be dictated by the 'Chenkov' archetype rather than having the special rules that make Chenkov a distinct archetype from the generic commanders available to those commanders regardless of what their name, history or regimental affiliation is?

So instead of having an unit entry that says 'One Platoon Command Squad in your army may replace its Platoon Commander with Commander Chenkov for <x> points and One Platoon Commander in your army may replace its Platoon Commander with Captain Al'rahem for <y> points, Platoon leaders for <x> points may choose the following upgrades (suitably renamed for their new, generic context):

Callous:
Special Rules: Taskmaster, Forward you dogs!, Send in the next wave.
Cunning:
Stalk the Enemy, Desert Raider
etc...

I disagree that you need a personal name or a special character to embody a set of special rules for convenience of communication. What benefit is giving a collection of rules a personal name over a generic one that simply summarises the archetype itself? You'd spend the same amount of time explaining to someone the nature of 'Chenkov's rules as you would a generic character upgrade if it embodied the same general array of rules (which I am assuming it does, since both are ways of expressing archetypal character traits within army lists). Someone unfamiliar with the Imperial Guard codex would be as clueless if you waved a model under his nose and said it was Chenkov as if you told him it was anything else.

Within the bounds of a strict, permissive ruleset, there are always going to be strict limitations on how 'uniquely your own' and 'creative' you are going to be able to be (before you start muddying the issues with house-rules and suchlike of course). Calling Chenkov something else because that's the only way presented in that ruleset to translate the archetype he represents into your own army is not in any way remotely 'making him your own' or being 'creative'. I never suggested it was.

In fact, so far as I'm aware I was railing against your suggestions that if you wanted to use a character archetype outside of that represented by the generic unit entries as they exist now, you should use the representation provided in the form of the Special Characters presented, because to do otherwise was 'not playing 40k'. Regardless of whether or not the characters those representations consist of fit into the elements you have been invited to 'make your own' and 'be creative' with both by the word of 40k's creators, and their action in providing 'Codex: Imperial Guard' rather than 'Codex: Cadian 8th' or 'Codex: Valhallan Combat Wombats'.

It's a presentation issue and perhaps a little thing to be annoyed at having to refer to a character within your army that embodies the same basic archetypes as one contained within the codex by the name of someone else's representation of that archetype, and to be forced to give him carapace armour or a power weapon when you'd rather have a chainsword and flak vest like the rest of your officers. But I happen to be of the opinion that it would have been a better choice to allow generic characters the ability to gain special rules clusters to represent some of the archetypes represented in named special characters, and thus provide greater opportunity within the boundaries inherent within the ruleset to attempt something 'unique' or 'creative' within the archetype, rather than forcing you to use 'different syllables for the same thing'.

However that's just one man's opinion. And I certainly know what they say about opinons...

CaptainOtter
20-08-2010, 17:51
@biggreengribly, I pretty much agree with you.

The lack of character customization and the newfound reliance on special characters is easily my biggest problem with 40k right now. I like playing this game becaue I get to build an army thats my own. Something I've built, and something that actually exists in the 40k universe. All of my characters have names and fully fleshed out backstory, as well as where the army comes from and all that jazz. It's so much cooler when you can have the rules reflect this, and take small upgrades to reflect that. I mean, its not a huge problem, but I would like to add a bit more variety and distinction to my characters.

And then we have special characters, who are becoming more and more integral to the army. They change how it operates, and the only way you can build a certain kind of army is with them. The space marine army embodies this. If I want to play a salamanders style army, I have to take Vulkan. But what if I dont want to? I want a company commander, or better yet a librarian. Instead, I have to take their character. And even if I just use his rules, and create my own personality over him, I still have to take all his other options. I was much happier with the custom chapter rules, rather than adding special rules to special characters.

Shadowheart
20-08-2010, 18:09
It doesn't affect the story - however it does affect making the minis match the story.
Eh, only if your story is about wargear. The exact type of gun the guy is waving around doesn't change his story. After Commissar Gaunt ditched his chainsword for a power sword, he was still pretty much Commissar Gaunt. I don't think this is about background so much as it's about playing dress-up with your grimdark dollies.

Even then, if it's about the miniatures counts-as gives you more freedom than any armoury listing does. Unless you're awfully strict about WYSIWYG. I'm pretty big on it myself, but I don't mind counting a gun that's not in your army list as the closest one that is. But the thinking seems to be that if it doesn't have a (GW-approved) rule it can't exist.

Lamoron
21-08-2010, 00:17
I can't possibly express my thoughts better than biggreengribbly already did. I agree with everything, and those upgrade options were exactly what I had in mind.

Occasionally it also bugs me, that the special characters come with über equipment and silly names for the special abilities. I very much like the idea of a unit of stealthy guardsmen coming in from the flank and doing hit&run attacks, but if I take Al'Raheem I have to take my units of black clad cloaked guardsmen, and tell my opponent:

* This is Al'Raheem, except I'm not going to use his instant death powersword or plasma pistol, but since he doesn't actually have a chainsword and pistol, I have to get your permission to play with my own rules.

* When I say "Fire and fall back", I mean his special "like the wind" order. I could just say like the wind, but it would really ruin the elite black ops team quality of my units here. I hope that's okay?

I can say these things, but I guess I would just like to actually stay "in character", but maybe I'm just wierd that way.

Imperialis_Dominatus
21-08-2010, 00:29
Eh. I use a Chaos force so I'd like to be somewhere with options between my current Codex and 3.5.

Oh yeah, that's the trend they're going for now. Hopefully that trend will continue through an entire development cycle... *snigger* like that'll happen.

I'm okay with the reduction of options compared to 3rd/early 4th as long as every army gets to the point the more recent Codices are at. Especially armies that have been waiting forever for a Codex in general. If they do another paradigm change before a new Chaos Codex, though, or change it right after, I'll eat a squirrel in a fit of bloody and mismanaged rage.

callsign-husker
21-08-2010, 16:21
I often fondly reminisce about my Daemon Prince. I spent nearly an hour or so working out which codex pages were relevent, which upgrades were barred and which weren't and that's all before the modelling process took place but for all the effort i came out the other side with something UNIQUE. In time he outgrew the fluff that I'd created for him and took on a charecter all of his own, his own history of victories and scars and even gained a fearsome reputation at the local gaming clubs and GW.

But do I miss it? I think I surprise myself in saying no. As great as it was having such a unique charecter the novelty of halting gameplay to explain his special rules each (and pretty much every) time he performed an action was far from unique.

Gamers generaly don't know what rules codices other than their own contain and who can blame them at £17.50 a pop? 3rd edition codices were over encumbered with special rules as it was: the various armouries and add on codices only helped to further muddy the waters, god knows that at times I struggled to remember what was in MY codex!!!

I much prefer the abilities that the new codices give us:
-the ability to game w!ithout wargear arguements
-the ability to enjoy playing the game
-the ability to actually finish the game and still have time for a pint!

Malice313
21-08-2010, 16:49
I once posted a thread in which I proposed that the nature of limiting options modern codices was to stop the exploitation of them by beards.

If this was the case; it was beards exploiting a codex that was the driving force behind the design of the next.

Given that the same beards have just exploited the new codex in different ways, I summarised that there was no real point pandering to the beards as it was at the expense of normal players who enjoyed the diversity of wargear.

I don't think I communicated my theory very well and was scathingly shouted down by many other forum members. A few how ever were interested in exploring the idea though it was hard to do with so many needless detractions.

Pyriel
21-08-2010, 21:04
i dont miss having so many options. what i do miss is, having special characters that are not auto-include. i CANNOT play a Captain , because Vulkan is so good i just *have* to include him as a captain. i cannot play a chaplain on foot of my own design (even by the codex's limited options) because that ultramarines chaplain is just THAT good in that role.

special characters overshadow custom-made characters so much that we just *have* to take SCs, as opposed to gear up our own ICs. thats the problem that *seriously* hinders our options, that if i dont take Khan/Vulkan/Lysander but just my own Captain, then i am an idiot. they're THAT much better.

Damien 1427
22-08-2010, 09:38
I do, but then again, I don't.

I'm apparently one of those aberrations who never had a problem working out how to use the last Chaos book. I liked the choice, I found it liberating instead of stiffling. I'm not going to get into the unceasing bitch-fest that is the debate around the current Chaos Codex, but I will simply state I am not a huge fan of the minimalist approach... in that particular case.

Look at Loyalists. They have more than they used to, but still stick to the new regime. It works. Orks, again, prove that "less is more" can and does work. They just need to spend more than one boozy lunch break on the damned thing.

I'm not a massive fan of the "doctrines in special characters" thing, though. Taking Orks as an example, I think they got it right with Big Meks and DeffDreads (In that taking a Big Mek allows a single DeffDread as a compulsory Troop choice), but I'd like similar with Warbosses on Bikes and Ork Bikerboyz (Instead of having to take Wazzdakka or Whatshisname from IA8).

Gutted
22-08-2010, 11:22
I like customising my characters and I do miss 2nd edition and all its wacky fun. That being said I think the more special rules, and customisation you laden a game with the model count of the current 40k the worse things get.

I think Codex: Orks was about the right for the 40k mini count (especially Orks!). But I would be all over a Skirmish scale game with uber customisation, special rules and combos.

Oguleth
22-08-2010, 11:34
I like the amount of options in most 5th ed releases... Except for lack of "traits" and so on on regular characters, so one doesn't have to take special characters for this sort of thing. I don't mind the lack of options for unit leaders and so on, I don't really see the need to make them stand out so much from their own unit..

Some factions, like CSM and DA, is just plain boring when it comes to options, I hope they never go down that route again...

Freman Bloodglaive
22-08-2010, 11:52
I play Space Wolves, I already have enough customisation, maybe more than I had in 2nd edition.

sigur
22-08-2010, 12:24
Pretty evil of you to pull the 2nd edition card on me on this topic. ;) I generally glorify 2nd edition a lot and for the most part because it deserves so but I have seen the horrors too much wargear can lead to (many 3rd edition codices). There simply is no need for 200 pieces of Wargear to outfit your characters with, it just lays more focus on list-writing. Especially the second 3rd edition Codex Chaos was an abomination in that regard. And in the end, there rarely was individuality found in these characters because inevitably, there were good combinations and less good ones to the point that they made no sense to have what so ever.

Codices these days have a LOT of possibility for customisation anyway. About as much as in 2nd edition (apart from the fun, gimmicky things 2nd edition had of course) and I really don't want to see bloated wargear sections again.

Mortarion74
22-08-2010, 22:48
One of the problem with the old customisable characters were that even though it might have looked like they had a lot of options, there were often very few that were viable and/or there were other limitations in place.

The character options are very much the same as they ever were, after all do we want to spend half an hour going through options, when in the end we will get what we always get, a power weapon, and plasma pistol is pretty generic.

Ofcourse it depends on army and less so on edition. Use a 5th ed. codex then take a look at the 4th ed. and you quickly see that its alot easier to chose those options.

One complaint i do have is a bug bear of mine and thats having the charater on one page and the rules and stuff at the other end of the book. So annoying.

Garven Dreis
22-08-2010, 23:07
I play Space Wolves, I already have enough customisation, maybe more than I had in 2nd edition.

Well done.

On a related note, do you sometimes wonder why people cringe when you say that you play Space Wolves and are happy with the amount of numerous and cheap options you have? You've got no idea what I'd pay to have that level of customization in my Chaos dex, but I digress before this turns into a "Chaos codex sucks yo".

Hellebore
23-08-2010, 01:49
My biggest peeve is that special characters are slowly pushing out generic characters because the gap in ability through gear/special rules is just getting bigger and bigger.

IMO there are two ways they could go to improve the above - drop generic characters altogether and present the special characters as 'archetypes' represented by that character (Ragnar Blackmane represents the Berserker wolf lord archetype) OR drop special characters as separate entries and make them examples of 'generic' characters. ie Ragnar Blackmane is a wolf lord with X options, no more, no less.

It's just getting silly and is probably how 'customisability' is presenting now. Rather than going through your list of stuff, you go through your list of characters and pick one to use.

Which almost always leaves the Generics out of the game.

Hellebore

mrln68
23-08-2010, 01:53
The next thing...

No list at all. Each character comes with an army retinue. :p

Malice313
23-08-2010, 02:03
My biggest peeve is that special characters are slowly pushing out generic characters because the gap in ability through gear/special rules is just getting bigger and bigger....

...It's just getting silly and is probably how 'customisability' is presenting now. Rather than going through your list of stuff, you go through your list of characters and pick one to use.

Which almost always leaves the Generics out of the game.

I think you've hit the nail on the head there Hellbore.

If you are to have any sort of special rules to make your specially converted up army stand out from the crowd you have to use the same stock standard special character out of the book that everyone knows how to counter anyway.

Its the classic GW way of not just addressing a problem, but (as I'm so fond of saying) fixing it, like you fix a cat. They don't go for half measures, but then they don't stop at a full measure either.

The one thing I find was the case in 2nd ed was that there was no broad spread conversion of character models as you just bought your "off the rack" special character model and you were all kitted out for hours of unbalanced gaming. The advent of 3rd ed saw far more conversion. I think this was party because people wanted a unique model for the character they had spent time inventing.

J-rock
23-08-2010, 04:27
Armouries where you can actually choose your own wargear, luxury!

When I was a child we used to roll on random tables.

And then go home, eat cold gravel and lick the road clean.

Kids today, they wouldn't know they were born.

Malice313
23-08-2010, 08:24
Armouries where you can actually choose your own wargear, luxury!

When I was a child we used to roll on random tables.

And then go home, eat cold gravel and lick the road clean.

Kids today, they wouldn't know they were born.

:D Yeah those were the days.

At least you got variety in what you came armed with. Then you could do a conversion for the model. If you were lucky there was a model that was almost right for you.

Bloodknight
23-08-2010, 09:05
whilst a captain has decent range of options, wat about chaplins, apothocaries, Techmarines and Librarians?

That's probably because all of these except for the captain carry standard gear that allows them to do their jobs. It represents their fluff and I really cringed when - under the old SM codex - every Chaplain instantly ditched his Crozius Arcanum (you know, his badge of office and honour, so obviously the thing he'd hate to wield...) for a set of lightning claws. The same counts for the librarian's force weapon or the Techmarine's power axe (the thing he got from the Ad Mech!).

I don't really miss the old armouries. I hated recalculating all Daemon Princes I encountered because so many people failed at producing legal ones, I don't miss my IG armoury (well, there wasn't much worthwhile for Guard characters) and I also don't miss my DE armoury - there are only about 4 items in it worth using anyway.

For my 3 armies (IG, DE and CSM) I think there's enough customization - ok, the Daemon Prince is pretty lame, but that's it.

Lord Damocles
23-08-2010, 09:17
No I don't miss armouries.

Look at the humble Canoness for example. All those choices to pick from...

Cloak of St Aspira
Bolt Pistol/Inferno Pistol
Blessed Weapon/Eviserator
Book of St Lucius
Litanies of Faith (maybe)
Jump Pack (maybe)

Wow. That list was really worth it. It's almost like 90% of it isn't used (yay, Purity Seals!) :eyebrows:

Eulenspiegel
23-08-2010, 11:49
My biggest peeve is that special characters are slowly pushing out generic characters because the gap in ability through gear/special rules is just getting bigger and bigger.

IMO there are two ways they could go to improve the above - drop generic characters altogether and present the special characters as 'archetypes' represented by that character (Ragnar Blackmane represents the Berserker wolf lord archetype) OR drop special characters as separate entries and make them examples of 'generic' characters. ie Ragnar Blackmane is a wolf lord with X options, no more, no less.

This sums up my feelings on the matter, too, although I´d lean more towards "archetypes". Buying a SM captain with wargear X, Y and Z, and giving him the "Master Artificers" rule for his army (master-craft meltas, flamers and Thunder Hammers) for, say, 50 points, or "Outriders" (makes bikes troops), or "Chapter Elite" (makes Terminators troops) or ... or ... or ...
Quick and easy.

That way, not every Vulkan-clone has the same armament, you have variety but not at the cost of playability and balance.

Vet.Sister
23-08-2010, 17:52
About the only thing I miss is a minimalist leader if I wanted to concentrate on the army itself, I could make an HQ choice for SM that was a bit better than a veteran sargeant if I wanted too. thereby saving points for other stuff while still having an HQ that was effective for what he did... usually leadership boost. I have to agree that most armouries were filled with stuff that never got taken either because it was next to useless OR another option is clearly superior for 90% of the situations encountered. I guess, I just never wanted to field a special character every time I played, but anymore it is getting to be a requirement... :mad:

Throtling
23-08-2010, 18:17
I miss christmas tree characters so much :(
Because having a chaos lord with 150+ points of upgrade pwning all was soooo fun.

Anyway, I've used to hate armouries, this system is much more better, only having less options is what makes it bad.
But, good point is, that most new coddies have more usable choices now *cough* lash+obli+pm csm *cough*

Dark Aly
24-08-2010, 16:32
About the only thing I miss is a minimalist leader if I wanted to concentrate on the army itself, I could make an HQ choice for SM that was a bit better than a veteran sargeant if I wanted too. thereby saving points for other stuff while still having an HQ that was effective for what he did... usually leadership boost. I have to agree that most armouries were filled with stuff that never got taken either because it was next to useless OR another option is clearly superior for 90% of the situations encountered. I guess, I just never wanted to field a special character every time I played, but anymore it is getting to be a requirement... :mad:

especially for 500-750 point games which used to be great. Hellebore pretty much summed up my thoughts exactly. although i love my ravenwing and deathwing so sort of have use SC's for that.

there were some broken things for wargear in 1st, 2nd and 3rd though (cough*vortex grenade*cough).