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Wednesday, May 7, 2014

So... do we call it 6.5 or 7? Plus, a very brief battle report

Wow. Things are crazy right now, on the work front, the home front and the hobby front. I've just been super busy, though I have found time to model. The busyness though has made me feel painters ADD, and I have been jumping around without finishing anything. However, I've found my focus, as I have been working on daemons. Hoping to have a few of them done soon. I have also gotten in a game or two as well.

The other day the hobby net broke (literally and figuratively) with the news of the upcoming release of the 40K rules. Now, is this 7th edition or rather just a tweaking of the rules (6.5 edition)? Who knows? But, it is very apparent that its coming, and coming fast. Holy cow. 6th edition isn't even 2 years old! That's a fast turn around- maybe a bit too fast?

Look, I am all for having a "living rules-set", one that is flexible and changes as issues and flaws are brought out. But, I think this turnaround is a bit too fast, actually. I mean, we still haven't even all the nuances of 6th yet! I do wish they would have waited just a bit longer for this. Another year maybe?

Now, there's been lots of rumors. However, some have been semi-confirmed by photographic evidence. Big changes to force organization. New missions and "strategic cards", and a new psychic phase. That's just what's been kind confirmed.

I am always happy to see more missions, it adds a lot more flavor than the usual 6. One of the things that the new WD has featured is mission variants and unique scenarios. I really liked the one where the Imperial Guard had to rescue the Inquisitor and get him to the landing pad- while preventing the orks from moving deeper down the table. It was a lot of fun to read, and I did a variant of that mission with my friend. More missions are a good thing, and the rumor of "strategic cards", allowing for more ways to earn victory points sounds interesting, making for more mission variability. I also really don't think that a new Psychic phase is going to make too big a difference- the use of psychic powers needs a little streamlining, and maybe making it a phase will help to do that.

And what of the force organization rumors? This is the one that makes me concerned. Apparently one can still use regular force organization, and get a bonus for doing so. But one can also have an "unbounded" list, allowing you to throw in everything including the kitchen sink. On the one hand, I like the idea that, if I'm using my Khorne Bezerkers, maybe I want 4 Heavy Support choices instead of 3? I love Maulerfiends, and they are very Khorne-y in their quest for blood and close combat. However, 4 Maulerfiends aren't overwhelming, as they can get pinged to death with massed fire (which has happened to me plenty). But, it would be fun to play, and would make for a compelling look on the battlefield. Or maybe I just want tons of Death Guard- footsloggers and NOTHING else. Unbounded sounds like it will give you the opportunity to do just that. However, I am fearful that some poor players will abuse it, like taking a bunch of 5 riptides or 9 Heldrakes or something stupid and WAAC-y (BTW- as a Chaos player, I like my Heldrakes, but I would never want to face (or field, if it comes to that) 9 Heldrakes. The most I have ever used was 2, but once was against someone who also used 2, and the other time was in a bigger 2500 point game). I think giving players more freedom and choices is good, but we have all faced that one player that would abuse it. As for tournaments, they won't be impacted by that- they can just say "Regular Force Organization, NO unbounded, NO Lords of War, etc. Meanwhile, casual players may want to talk first before drawing up their lists- a bit of social contract theory won't hurt games of 40K.

I hope that this new edition goes well. I know lots of people think the sky is falling, but I chose to remain optimistic, as I hope that a streamlining of 6th edition will make for a better game for everyone.

Meanwhile, I played another game with my friend that I am introducing to the hobby. He has taken a liking to it, that's for sure. He's getting quite good with the Ultramarines. I decided to play an all Daemon force (which I haven't done in a while, and I admit I was rusty). We played the Emperor's Will mission, and Brian played the shooting game as my Daemons slowly marched toward them. I had gotten so used to 3+ saves with Marines that I forgot that 5+ saves are hard. I made mistakes, including rolling badly to bring in reserves, and a daemon  prince actually failed a charge roll, thus leaving him vulnerable to shooting (which did him in).

My Bloodthirster and Great Unclean One did well. In particular, my Bloodthirster wiped out a squad of terminators and a librarian very quickly indeed. And my Plaguebearers were on the objective, their shrouded making them nigh on unkillable. But, those wins weren't enough. The game ended 4 -5 for Ultramarines. I had my objective plus slay the warlord. He had his objective plus linebreaker and first blood. It was a close game by the end, but I got wailed on in the first half. With my friend Brian, I may have created a tactical monster...

This weekend I'll get my hot little hands on the WD and see for myself the rumblings for the new edition. Until next time...