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"Pink isn't a color. It's a lifestyle." - Chumbalaya
"...generalship should be informing list building." - Sir Biscuit
"I buy models with my excess money" - Valkyrie whilst a waitress leans over him

Thursday, June 21, 2012

More thoughts on 6th edition rumors...

Again, all rumors so discussions are based on what we know, which is not everything. A small rule which has been overlooked could change the way everything interacts. We're also looking at this from a competitive balance stand point.

So. We get more rumors of terrain interactions...yay. Can't I just have terrain that gives cover, potentially stops shooting and makes moving through more difficult rather than shoots/bites/claws/explodes back? Oh you're Imperial? Don't worry - if you buy this expensive kit you become Fearless! Oh and with some armies real lack of ability to deal with AV14, we're going to throw in some more - hopefully it doesn't have hull points or Tyranids can cry some more.

Anyway, I'm still hoping for such terrain features to be largely ignored for tournaments or serious gaming - for fun, by all means I'm sure it would be hilarious in a casual campaign or what not to have your army eaten by mysterious trees or for Xenos forces to try and break open Imperial bastions, etc. 

We're clearly seeing some sort of flyer interaction as Games Workshop tries to push Apoc stuff on us - and as we said from the very beginning this is not a good thing. Money is already a factor in this game and making it more so (you bought that several hundred dollar Titan I could never afford? Drats!) isn't a good thing. If this is just a rule-set for the occasional flyer being brought in - Scythes, Valk/Vendettas, Bommas, Stormravens, etc. ya that's okay. When you make something plastic and more affordable, all well and good. I just foresee Titans starting to force their way in...

However, there does seem to be some light at the end of the tunnel for Allies - assuming it's true. This is not to say Allies is a good concept but multiple detachments seem to be in. I.e. - grab one HQ and two Troops and then another HQ and two Troops (from the same army) and you essentially have two FoC slots to fill (i.e. an extra two HQ, eight Troops, six Elites, six Fast Attack and six Heavy Support). This is great for certain armies (Xenos) as it unlocks extra FoCs which they really need (i.e. Elites for Tyranids) at the expense of Allies. Frankly without much tinkering I think this could work just for Xenos and leave Imperial Armies with no Allies and standard FoCs...

Again, this assumes multiple detachments is true and without knowing the other rule interactions. It's long been said allowing some Xenos armies to trade FoC slots would allow them greater ability to compete in a mechcentric environment (often their greatest weakness whilst still balancing anti-infantry). Using Tyranids again, running six units of two Hive Guard instead of any Fast Attack would often be a viable option and 'only' 600 points, well enough at even 1750 to leave plenty of room for other anti-tank and anti-infantry options. This could potentially be possible in 6th but if we just laugh at the concept of Allies, can we laugh at this as well? Would it be viable as Xenos-only? Most Marine armies don't run two HQs commonly and really have good choices everywhere so there's less to gain from such. The only issue I'm really seeing here is Coteaz - even more out of control >.<.

The issue of this though is someone buying the cheapest HQ and Troops they can find to max out on Elites/Fast Attack/Heavy Support. A Big Mek and two squads of Gretchin? A Haemon and two squads of Wracks? Etc. One would assume there is a ceiling to this (i.e. max of two detachments per 2000 points) but I wouldn't be surprised if this was overlooked. Easy to add in though for TO's...

Regardless, we're wading into the very murky waters of comp. Changing the game for better missions (NOVA, those these are based on 5th edition constructs) is one thing but blanket stopping some rules (i.e. Allies, random terrain, fortifications, etc.) to stopping it for some and not others (extra FoC for xenos, not Marines) can become a very slippery slope... The goal is balance for everyone but at what point are we simply comping the system?

And then we have the way casualties are removed - closest to closest. This is actually something I can actually see being okay. It does a couple things.

  1. puts more emphasis on model placement within a unit. This was a severely overlooked concept in 5th where placement of important models (i.e. characters, PFists, etc.) had a huge role in how combats were engaged and which side won. Placement of special and heavy weapons would impact how effective there were as well. Just as important though was model removal which could take away from model placement. Model removal is now mathematical which puts more emphasis on model placement.
  2. Wound allocation bonkers is gone but with proper placement, the special guys will theoretically never die until the end. 
  3. Puts more emphasis on movement and flanking. Your sarge is safe at the back? *moves round the back* Not anymore. And this is again where model placement comes in handy - you need to understand how this rule interacts with your opponents movement and shooting to get the most out of your unit.
Ultimately this ruling should punish more model placement within units and over-extension (i.e. stop sending your damn meltaguns on suicide runs all the bloody time) while simulatenously removing the shenanigans people were using to make units more durable with wound allocation. The only downside is how this interacts with vehicle explosions - do special models somehow get a free pass here? Or will it be something similar to what goes on now?

What about in combat - is this carried over there or only for shooting? Remember the 4th edition kill zones? Wound allocation was annoying as hell with only a few units and closest to closest removal for shooting does make some sense (and offer greater depth) but in combat could just be as annoying as wound allocation on those very specific units in 5th - except now it's for all units. Don't believe this? Go play 4th edition or 7th edition Fantasy. And if it's not carried over to combat, how are wounds and casualties worked out there? A lot hinges on answers to these questions...

Anyway, there are some good things here to go along with the things we are all squeezing our eyes shut over...

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