40K: The Bottle – Not Broken Until You Drop It

 

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So much conversation in the community about “fixing” 40K, which, it appears, is very broken.  So help me understand; who broke it?

You’re standing around with your mates, enjoying a nice cold bottle of beer.  Someone drops their bottle and it shatters on the concrete floor, spilling the precious liquid.  Was the bottle broken when you bought it, when you brought it home, or while you were drinking it?  Of course not.  You were just enjoying it…until someone broke it.

To me, this a metaphor for today’s 40K.

Do you honestly think that the guys at GW put together a 208 page tome intending it to be a failure?  Note: this is, of course, a rhetorical question, since many in the internet community will, no doubt, answer yes.   Did they meet in secret cabals for months talking about how to screw over the community?  Of course not.  How many times have I read that “GW has openly admitted they are in the business to sell models?”  This is so much hyperbole.   Seriously…you’re saying they created a rulebook of over 200 pages with absolutely no intention of making it work?  Just to sell models?  That’s pretty bloody cynical, and frankly, wrong.  They handed you a container with something wonderful inside they hoped you would enjoy.  What do many people do?  They break the bottle.

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Most of the folks that I have played the game with are “casual” gamers.  They enjoy throwing down and spending time with their friends.  Most of them don’t worry about whether this paragraph or that unit profile is “broken.”  They play the game as it was intended;  they have a good time trying to beat the crap out of their opponent.  They also understand that the game can be manipulated in ways that break the social contract to the point that the “bottle is broken.”  This, at least in my gaming sphere, happens on occasion.  I am guilty myself of such violations of trust.  But when we do it, it is a bottle that is dropped, not thrown against the wall to get peoples attention and prove that we CAN break the bottle.  It is what the game was meant to be.  What the creators have clearly stated they intended it to be.

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Those who choose to play in a tournament setting have also chosen to play in an environment that, if not encourages, at least enables the throwing of the bottle.  Like the difference between gaming with a known group of friends and walking into a pub with a bunch of strangers.  In the pub, there is a much greater chance that there will be several bottle “throwers.”  They are the people who bring the (fill in the blank)Star, the five Wraithknights, the five Imperial Knights, e.g.  They enter the establishment intending to shake things up; to hell with the rules.  If a few bottles get broken, that is the price of victory!  I truly don’t believe that most of the bottle breakers are malicious in their intent.  But the structure of the rule set in 40K allows them to do what they do.  With greater choice comes greater responsibility.  I know that most folks go to tournaments and have a great time.  That they feed on the competition.  Got it.  My point is that most of the “bottle breaking” goes on in the tournament scene. With a certain amount of irony, I find it fascinating how it is often those who bring the crazy who are most likely to complain about someone else’s broken list.

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Do we fix it?  Can we fix it?  Discussion regarding “fixing” the rules gets back to the metaphor I have been using.  You broke the bottle, and NOW you want it fixed?  Comps at tournaments? Really?  What…doing hobby scoring and the like is going to put the broken social contract back together?  Maybe if we have a limit on certain units?  Mission based events might fix things?  Tournament play is broken by definition…GW has no official tournament rule set nor does it intend to, unlike other gaming systems (Infinity ITS for example).  So by playing in this environment, you have broken the bottle by default.  Why try to put it back together?  The beer is on the floor, and the glass in all over the place.  When you walk into the local pub, you should realize what you are getting.   Don’t try to fix anything.  Just go with it and realize that you are in the Wild West.  The tournament scene is what it is…and I am happy to see it thriving.  Many people come together to play a game they enjoy.

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The ultimate consequence when the bottle is broken often enough is that those who are abusing the rules don’t get asked back to the party.  They are shunned or kicked out of the drinking establishment.  And so it should be.  Of course,  we all have friends who are the proverbial bottle breakers, throwing containers against the wall again and again.  This is another issue altogether, as it delves into the social aspect of the game.  Not in this time and place.

Balance in 40K, while trying to keep the bottles from being broken on any level, is an illusion.  Especially when it comes to tournament play.  Trying to force a rule set that has the flexibility of 40K (in terms of list building) to do something it was not intended to do has predictable consequences.  Buy your beer and enjoy it.  If, by accident or intent, you break your bottle of cold, refreshing liquid, then that is part of the risk you take playing this game.  Don’t blame the rules.  Wait a moment…why blame anyone?

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Are the rules really broken, or can we just get on with playing our game?

  • Charon

    Try to play a casual Dark Eldar army vs a casual Eldar army or a casual CSM army against a casual SM army. The bottle is broken without even touching it.
    The powerlevel is so different that you don’t have to “intentionally break the bottle”. The same model with the same stats and the same point costs just gets 3 more special rulesand a ton more options if you pick the “right codex”. No breaking involved at all.
    You don’t have to go into extremes like invisible Deathstars to clearly see that some codices are just way stronger than others.

    And casual gaming is where this happens. At a tournament everybody walks in with a broken bottle so it is a leveled playing field for most parts. At a casual pickup game the guy with the better codex has a better chance of winning.

    “Most of them don’t worry about whether this paragraph or that unit profile is “broken.” ”

    You probably should tell that to gaming groups that saw the Wraithknights profile and casual players that still worry and moan if anyone fields ONE of them. So, if the bottle is not broken how can this happen if you field a regular unit without any crazy combo or spamming it?

    • Vomkrieg

      And this phenomenon is not new.

      Take 3rd edition. Blood Angels codex vs Space Marine codex. 15 points for a tactical marine in both codexes, but Blood Angels got Furious Charge (+1s, +1i), a 1 in 6 chance of moving d6″ towards the enemy (sometimes bad, but usually not as it was in your turn) and a chance of being upgraded to being a death company trooper.

      The limitations on blood angels were vastly outweighed by the fact their basic troops were much better for the same points cost.

      • false-emperor

        exactly, nothing new, but codex creep and etc. was somewhat manageable when supported during 5e, before 6e (test edition) and 7e (basically apocalypse-bring-everything-edition)

        • Vomkrieg

          I still think the “codex update the army all at once” model is a core part of the problem. Armies seem to be designed independently and without thought of how they would work when matched against others.

          Personally, i like the model used by a lot of other businesses, which is staggering releases for all armies/factions instead of doing one army at a time.

          • false-emperor

            Agree. That is codex creep in a nutshell. And gone unsupported creates even more issues.

          • Aaron St.Pierre

            Except Codex creep isn’t actually happening as Khorne Daemonkin clearly illustrates.

          • euansmith

            They could bring out a new sexy broken unit for each army in rotation. That way everyone could having something to buy.

          • Vomkrieg

            Warmachine sort of does this. In the same year every faction got cavalry units for example, and Battle engines another year, and Colossal’s the next.

            Sure, you get periods in the release cycle where one faction has the cool new toys and other don’t, but it’s not normally long, and it’s not always the same faction getting things first (although they do go, Warmachine then hordes, so hordes is always a small step behind, not perfect, but better than it could be)

          • PrimoFederalist

            Infinity does it, too. Each campaign or rules update, they are releasing models for everyone, updating rules that need updated, and tweaking profiles and points costs. It’s a breath of fresh air.

          • Me

            That’s a great idea, and it would be much easier for them to accomplish if they gave the rules for free and published fluff and art filled rule books (with the latest rule set) once a year. I would definitely buy the book (I like fluff and art), but the game (both intra and inter army) would much easier to keep balanced.

            Having spewed all of that, I wonder if that is where they intend to go based on what is happening with AoS.

          • Vomkrieg

            I think warscrolls are a great idea personally. No need to wait for a book, just use the stat card with the figure.

            I do wonder about AoS version II in X years time and how they will resolve that though

          • Tesq

            Crimson slaughter/boack legion were for fluff and artowrk and style so they should just make less csm < sm.
            I still think that heldrake < sm but whatever….. this hate for give the special rule to csm fort exemple have no sense like csm fight with no tactic…..
            I could understand if some crazy units does not but most should.
            Look what 3rd ed csm codex was. Too good but god that was a csm codex.
            A lot of different legion relic x legion etc…

      • Cergorach

        This was not new in 3rd edition either. In Rogue Trader your ‘Special’ Marine could wind up with either a flamer or a D-cannon (or anything in between)…

        • Vomkrieg

          Oh yeah, i’d forgotten all those crazy random tables in RT

          And as bad as the special weapons rolls were. You couldn’t beat “chaos attributes” for random skew up, down and sidewise.

        • Vomkrieg

          Thinking on this more. I find the weirdness in Rogue Trader a lot more acceptable. The game was raw, the company was new, and they were trying out ideas. It was proverbial “spitballing” by a rookie company in it’s early days finding it’s feet.

          They were not a multi-million dollar game franchise with all the tools and experience needed to make a fair game.

          • Cergorach

            GW = 1975
            RT = 1987

            That’s not a new company by any definition of the word. But gaming was different in 1987, more nerds the were not uber competitive and were fine with that amount of randomness.

          • And you had a GM. Kind of a different game all together than what we have now

          • Vomkrieg

            I think i played 2 or 3 games of RT with a GM and hundreds without. Non GM games of equal points were by far the most common games in my local area

          • But pre compendium and compilation…..oh the math. Oats with heavy bolters and vortex grenades were kinda fun. :p

          • Vomkrieg

            Well, GW was a pretty small operation from 75-87.

            And if you think gamers were really any different back then, you weren’t playing back then. or you are looking through rose coloured glasses.

          • Azrell

            New to game design. Early on GW was a game store that sold everything like your local FLGS

      • Havik110

        true but remember the difference in weapons that would remove a marine outright then vs now…i remember playing in 4th when all you would see were 3-4 laz-plaz rhino squads, a pred, and 2 dev squads…that was the whole game…

        and rapid fire weapons either didnt move so never got into 12 inches or didnt shoot so they could get to 12…either way, i think these days you have more bolter or splinter or shiruken shots now in 1 turn compared to an entire game in the old days…demi-rend is the most amazing rule in the game because you shoot so much more than you used to…

        GW could balance the game but it would require people that knew math and not people that said, i want them to pay 150 dollars for that model and i want them to buy 6 of them at least…

        • petrow84

          “GW could balance the game but it would require people that knew math and not people that said, i want them to pay 150 dollars for that model and i want them to buy 6 of them at least…”

          So, they actually know math, right? 900 bucks for 6 broken units are better than 60 for a balanced.

          • Joseph Boyd

            Yes and I agree! But when you get 20 new players for having a balanced game the math changes.

      • Charon

        While the phenomenon is not new, it rarely reached a point where you can just go and say “oh, you play Eldar vs my Dark Eldar? Cool. Lets just say you won and we go to the cinema instead.”

        • Andreas Noche

          You never played against Alaitoc then? Lash Chaos? Iron Warriors of Doom? Siren Prince? First turn charge BA? Those were the dark times, i tell you. Everything out now, i can handle. Those abominations? Only with full commitment.

          • Charon

            That was 5 examples of going all out tournament armies which did fight other all out tournament armies.
            Missed the topic by a lot. These are rather specific optimized examples.
            So where you ever in a situation where your opponent just tells you “I play eldar” and the game was basically over from start? Nope. 5th edition Grey Knights came very close to this situation against daemons. It got called out for beeing terrible and the edition changed pretty quickly after that.
            But Im talking here of a pretty casual eldar army against a maxed out DE army where the DE is still struggling.

          • Hiphopopotamus

            I don’t know about that, the only thing DE struggle against in the eldar army, is the jetbikes with scatter lazer’s (but this is problematic for all armys), they are a real hard counter to our skimmers.. remove that one units usefulness and they stand up pretty well against them, DS scourges with haywire can really make a mockery of eldar mech. I’ve only played a few times this edition due to time constraints but have won every game with my DE, eldar yes are problematic.
            I get whined at a lot for using too many venoms, i only use 5 btw out of a possible 18 i think.. so i don’t know what to think, but of course i use covens too, it seems stupid not to use covens they are that good now.. It has nothing to do with the players i face either, these guys have been playing since way back in 2nd, i’ve been playing DE since 3rd

          • Nameless

            more from curiosity than doubting you, how do you deal with wraithknights with Dark Eldar? of course the basic splinter weapons can hurt it but odds are pretty low 2/81 seems like it would take an unbelievable amount of fire to bring it down. Also how do you fair into the sheer number of warp charge that Farseers and seer council generate?

          • Hiphopopotamus

            Well i sacrifice my army like no tomorrow, so maybe that’s got a lot to do with it, i take my licks and counter hard towards that kind of stuff, but i’ve never went up against 3+ of them at the one time, which i think is more in line with your question? I thought the discussion was about standard non tournament play.

            I don’t know if i’m doing anything special tbh, DE have changed a lot since the last codex, generally i have no problem against one, in fact i wouldn’t prioritise against something i know i can’t down in one turn, systematically take out the rest of the army then take your numbers against stuff like that, the best it can do is take out one skimmer a turn, plus we have a 4+ jink. throw empty raiders/venoms in front of full venom/raiders to bait and get cover(terrain too) rather than jink saves. But as i say i have not played much this edition.

            What i have found is that all our army can DS now, I’ve been using that to some devastating effect, not sure if this helps, i wish i could play more and give you a better answer.

            I do use a lot of 5 man warrior squads with blaster and a haywire as sacrificial units, shoot blaster, throw haywire 8″ and then charge with haywire against vehicles, this of course doesn’t work against the wraithknight but it certainly helps you knock out other vehicles so you can concentrate your good guns on the juicier targets, ravagers are your friend here too. our fast attacks are so awesome now and we can have 6 in the detachment, just fill the heavies with ravagers and you should be able to handle them just fine IMO. Though as i say i would need to play them more to construct a better answer for you, I know this doesn’t help much but feel free to ask me more about my play style if you think it differs from yours.

          • Charon

            The interesting fact is that you play a pretty maxed out list to achieve that while the Eldar probably plays a super relaxed list. You are basically min maxing here to counter a relaxed standard army.

          • Hiphopopotamus

            I think its more how my meta is played tbh, we don’t play WAAC, but we do power-play to some extent tbh, i think everyone does this now.
            don’t get me wrong Eldar are definitely the better codex and DE are definitely a hard army to play without even bringing Eldar into the equation, it seems DE was the last army released before the massive power creep began.

            I know a lot of people hate the new DE codex, i myself hated it at the start then played it a bit, now i love it, it really plays how i want a DE codex to play.
            Also i don’t think 5 man squads are min maxing, if i was min maxing i would just bring a load of empty venoms and take as little units in venoms as possible and max it close to that 18 mark as i could while bringing some fliers. that to me would be min-maxing, of course this is open to ones interpretation and opinion.

          • Andreas Noche

            4th Edition BT against DE
            6th Edition GK against quite a few
            Alaitoc and Council weren´t tournament only
            (and i never saw the night lord one ^^)
            4th (?) Eldar vs IG
            4th Tyras vs almost everyone

            Point is: This game was always broken, casual or not.

          • Hiphopopotamus

            yeah this game has always been rock paper scissors. Eldar and space marines are just ridiculous atm, but that will change before the end of the year, then the crys of foul balancing play will be about another army, fingers crossed its DE lol.

            TBH 40k is a beast atm, so many armies and so many units it must be a nightmare to balance it for the writers, but sometimes you feel as if the writers are playing a different game than everyone else. I think skill in play testing with certain people who play test has a lot to do with it too, not everyone has the same level of play and experience so the balancing issues arise rather than the math around probabilities.

          • Havik110

            4th – 5th edition lash? um…kill the prince…game over..

            old iron warriors in 3.5 were bad becaus they had the extra heavy slot back when heavies ruled the game…

            as far as 1st turn charge, i think you mean night lords from 3.5 chaos…infiltrate 18 inches away, jump 12, assault 6…3 squads were guaranteed 1st turn…

            Khorne demon bomb was worse…

            5th edition GKs would have slaughtered them

            and 6th and 7th edition eldar say…oh thats cute…

            3.5 chaos was a fun book but it was the most powerful book out there once they invalidated BA 3rd edition and nothing got near it until 5th edition GKs…5th edition GKs was cheese, and we never thought it could get worse…then came 6th edition tau…

            GW sucks at balance because they dont care about balance…and after we saw that book im like, okay DE is going to be over the top and all of the books will be cheese so none of them will be cheese…nope wrong…DE is a crappy supplement to craftworld

          • Zingbaby

            Iron Warriors 3.5 were suuuppper cheesy back in the day! 🙂

          • petrow84

            Hated the World Eaters even more, with their 1 pt Chainaxe, or their 15 pts Axe of Khorne. And there was the Berserker glavie then…

          • Anasa

            What boggles my mind is the inconsistency of it. The codex creep started growing since 5th ed, then culminated in 6th ed. People playing weaker armies accepted power creep as a fact, and waited for THEIR turn of power creep. Suddenly, the company started toning down armies, and started with those that weren’t that powerful in the first place. People got used to the new standard and eagerly waited it to affect the strongest armies so there would be a more level playing field. Nope, jump to current 7th ed and the strongest armies are just getting stronger.

          • Muninwing

            i was pissed when BoLS announced Ward was writing DA. i didn’t want the army i’d been playing to suddenly be OP uselessness.

            there’s a ton of resentment from players loyal to their armies when the next example of power creep is their thing. especially if they picked that list for its underdog status.

            if i can win with an underpowered list, what would happen if my codex was the one everyone else was complaining about? an dhow boring would that be?

          • Spacefrisian

            Didnt realy mattered what you did with chaos 3.5, everything worked. Heck it can even hold its own against current dexes.
            I played a real Slaanesh army way back, unkillable dprince.

          • petrow84

            And the Leafblower from 5th.
            And the Screaming-Flaming Tzeentch horde.
            And World Eaters with Berserker Glavie Prince.
            And the Tyranidzilla army.
            And Dark “Spamcannon” Angels.
            And the Biker nobz with Rollawagons.

            And the devastated Craftworld oh C’heese, where only Eldrad’s cloning vats, the Falcon factory, and the Harlequin school remained untouched.

          • Charon

            That are still all just builds and not just a “I pick this faction and if you happen to have a weaker codex you lost”.
            You dont HAVE to play Nidzilla. But there is nothing that makes playing Eldar not playing Eldar when you fight Dark Eldar.
            There is a difference in a matchup between a certain army build and not even needing a specific build as all your units are just strictly better.

          • Hiphopopotamus

            how you think Nids feel against DE, Orks too? my Nid friend won’t even play Nids against my DE its that bad. You also have to remember Eldar is OP against everyone atm as is space marines. this is not just a DE problem its an every army problem. I know it seems that way and i feel bad for you if its mainly Eldar you’re up against. there’s not much you can do about that except spam some types of units.

          • Charon

            So… it IS broken? And you need to spam your best units? And it is not simply “not broken unless you decide you break it” because this is what the article is about. Everything is perfectly fine unless you WANT to make it unbalanced.

          • Hiphopopotamus

            i never said Eldar wasn’t OP, but broken in a balanced game?, far from it, i said its not as bad as you are making it out to be. this game has always been rock paper scissors, some armies don’t hold up well against others and DE was never good against Eldar except maybe for a limited time in 5th.
            What i’m saying is the same applies with orks and nids against DE, some armies just don’t match well against others.

            by the way who decides the balance? the players both agree or what you think yourself?, balance is an open interpretation to your meta, so your balanced list may not be the same as someone else’s. i believe in balance against the list you are playing, maybe you have to spam a bit more, but that’s ok cause eldar was wrote with 7th in mind, the DE codex wasn’t and it does suffer from a huge power creep don’t get me wrong i agree with you there.

          • Andreas Noche

            Ah yes: The biker nobz of doom. Good times 😉

          • Koszka

            I remember 3rd ed. eldar, chaos 3.5, blood angels, necrons, and space wolves being flat out brutal even when you weren’t going all out.

            I think a lot of people who complain about the direction of the game seem to forget the past of the game and that it never really had fair balance across every list ( lets not even go into the discussion of 2nd ed. fun, but dark times).

            Allies? We had those in 2nd ed. 3rd – 4th we had codex daemon/witch hunters allying with imperium all the time. Not to mention certain armies could field kroot mercenaries, deathwatch squads, or zealot mobs.

            Supplements? We had the war for armageddon, black crusade, and ridiculous amount of new content in issues of white dwarf. My IG army was have composed of issues of White dwarf issues ( used lizard mount doctrines, as well as gland warriors + witch hunter zealot mob)

            I personally like to uneven nature of the game. War isn’t fair or just. Some armies should be easier to master than others. Maybe one army sucks because people aren’t been playing them right. I recently took on the challenge of playing DE, and though it is difficult to play, My list has a very good success rate even though it is not competitive or spammy ( Outside of troops, I only duplicated a unit of mandrakes and an extra reaver jet bike unit)

            People inherently want to win. You and others will deny, but we all strive for the euphoric sensation of victory. Casual play lists are very different between players and groups. I like taking bullgryns, ogryns, rough riders, and ratlings in my casual builds. My friend takes a GT list and sprinkles a fun unit in. We each call it casual play, but one is much more powerful.

            I really don’t know why these articles keep popping up other than to shake cages.

          • Matthew

            Those days were awesome. Legendary players were made and broken.

          • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

            the difference is that there was a FOC then, and no allies (with limited exceptions). Now you can pretty much bring anything (in a formation which makes it even better) and so it is much easier to spam the most broken units and stack special rules combos, which was possible in 4th or 5th Ed. These effects hugely magnify the differences between codexes, and between casual players and those with the budget to buy the new hot spam build..

          • Andreas Noche

            I guess it was syndrome who said: If everyone is super, no one is.

            I wonder: If your troubles are with casual gaming, might it be the area you life in is quite toxic? If so, wouldn´t those guys even abuse a balanced system (since we already established that you can break any ruleset by trying hard enough)? And if so, what exactly would change if gw would introduce said balanced rules?

          • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

            no, its not a toxic area, but as others have said even normal armies from different codexes are way outof whack, as soon as the slightest whiff of competitiveness enters then it becomes rock-paper-scissor hammer at best. Its true you can abuse anything, but if there is less to abuse then potential imbalances will be less.

            To be honest, after 25+ years I have more or less given up on Warhammer as a bad lot. Thinking about 40K now makes my head hurt. I like 7th’s basic rules but the formations and codices are crazy, the potential special rules combos due to Battle Brothers truly out of control and balance terrible. Games take ages too, even at 1500 points. WHFB is dead. I think I have lost the will to play it any more.

          • Josh Watkins

            that’s why I jumped ship an started playing warmachine. the inclusion of a simple ‘field allowance’ rule makes a huge difference, plus PPress actually cares about its players and updates everything all at once so no one gets left out.

          • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

            I like the sound of PP, but I have no interest in another game based on combos and I don’t much like the aesthetic, the skirmish scale or the trigonometry involved (I prefer games that allow premeasuring). I want my troops to do what they are supposed to do, and me win through tactics, not by being able to stack special rules. So I am going to try Bolt Action and continue playing SAGA, though I may well stop gaming entirely if I can’t find regular opponents for those.

          • Andreas Noche

            Allys, Formations and unit spamming isn´t “casual” at least where i come from. This makes me think, your guys play pretty hard. And they will do this. even if the playing field is even. If seen my fair share of “balancing” attempts and believe me: They did nothing.

            I can only suggest, what I told other people in the same situation: Let go of what you think the game “is” or “should” be. Get curious again. Play it, like it was warmachine: Quick n dirty. Let go of the word “overpowered”. It really means nothing,

            A long time ago I read a blog from a professional Street Fighter II Player. He said, you can mourn all the way you want. Ban certain combos or fighter or whatever. But you never get to play the game. You play some random made up shadow of what the game is supposed to be. You get beaten a lot? Get better, train, try new options. Try new things. Get immersed.

            If you can´t or are not willing to, then ask yourself: Is it really gw´s inability to create rules for you, that is the problem? Or aren´t you, for good reason mind you, tired and sick? And if so: Is it really okay to rant about that and diminishing the fun for those who have it? Wouldn´t it be more mature to be a little sad and quit gw or wargaming instead of endless and (ultimatly) useless rants? (Mind you, not that i would call your post a rant)

        • Vomkrieg

          Damn, having not played the new edition that sounds awful.

      • Zingbaby

        Your forgot the overcharged rhino that (just) they [Blood Angels] could disembark from AND assault! …then Sweap!

        • Vomkrieg

          Oh yeah, corner stone of my army of the time. But at least the overcharged engines cost 15 points more.

          I got bored of winning easily with Blood Angels pretty quickly, swapped to Sisters of Battle

      • Only Seeking Snarky Lols

        ……. but BA won figuratively every national tournament ever during third edition.

        and melee was king in 3rd edition.

        your example is extremely bad.

        • Vomkrieg

          How so? I was agreeing with the point from Charon that “The powerlevel is so different that you don’t have to “intentionally break the bottle”. The same model with the same stats and the same point costs just gets 3 more special rulesand a ton more options if you pick the “right codex”. No breaking involved at all.”

          My point was just that 40k has had broken lists and broken armies for a long long time. And that BA tact squads fit the criteria of 3 special rules for free

          That BA’s won everything back in the day only reinforces that point.

    • Muz86

      I realise that we shouldn’t have to do this, but for a casual game with a friend simply introducing a points handicap can be sufficient.
      A friend and myself quickly realised that for example a 1500pt Thousand Son CSM list simply cannot beat a 1500pt Necron list outside of a miracle happening. Introduce a 300pt handicap against the Necrons and all of a sudden it becomes a more level playing field and the Thousand Sons actually stand a chance.
      I understand your point however, that this article does not take the above scenario into account and simply glosses over the fact that this situation needs an official remedy. My point however is that provided you’re playing a semi decent human being, I’m sure you’d be able to come to an acceptable compromise in order to ensure the game is fair and that both people have a shot at winning.

      • LordRao

        I like your suggestion about a points handicap. I do think it will take some serious playtesting to come to a reasonable handicap. Different armies need different relative handicaps, and many armies perform deifferently at different points levels, creating the need for different compensations.
        This brings us back to the fact that 40K is essentially broken. And we really should be allowed to assume that a big company like GW has done the internal balancing for us.

        • Muninwing

          what about a new Allies matrix that included numbers: how much extra you should have in order to make it a fair fight?

          not in raw points but percentages.

          then again, there’s problems with multiple detachments, etc. so the wide spectrum that this would require ends up being just as huge a mess as the points themselves.

      • Charon

        While I like your suggestion, this is exactly what the article means with “fixing it” and goes on to tell you that 1500 Thousand Sons vs 1500 Necrons is not broken in the first place so there is no need of fixing it as you are not trying to break the game on purpose.

      • false-emperor

        Who has the kind of time to discuss before every single game how to play? And who has that versatile of a collection of units to juggle around into a perfectly balanced and fair list?
        Games are played in our precious free time, which for most is limited.

        • denzark

          Why would you not have that discussion prior to every game? If your free time is precious, why waste it playing an army you can never win against? Before every game I have ever played I know: Points limit, race, is there SH, is there flyers, is it armour heavy vehicles? The latter 3 questions are absolutely key to not setting up for a washout that you might have well just diced off for.

          • Vomkrieg

            I see both points of view here.

            If you know the game is not fair, finding ways to make it fairer and therefore more fun to play are a workaround.

            But I also see the idea false-emperor has, that it shouldn’t be on players to balance the game

          • false-emperor

            Thanks,
            Friends and small groups can come to agreements and house rules, usually.
            But how many books are there, does the group own every single book and supplement to cross reference?
            The problem is playing other than your group of friends, “start up” games which are the majority of games played.

          • false-emperor

            So you list tailor? 😉
            Time, because that discussion takes days and should not have to occur AT ALL, as we PAYED for a game and models to go with that game, sorry you bought, built and painted great units Mr. Oopponent, but I am not going to play you.
            AoS avoided this gripe with free rules and no points, so look for wh40k to be scrapped the same way, the “7e-everything allowed edition,” where does 40k have to go, but down.

          • Charon

            So you basically force your opponent to show his hand while you tailor your army?
            And if he asks you these questions first you are going “I don’t know yet because I don’t know if you gonna take flyers”?

          • denzark

            No – I have these discussions prior to club night. I very rarely have pick up games. On the rare occasion I haven’t got a game arranged, I would ask that before I started. If the opponent says ‘I am running 5 knights’ and the highest Strength weapon in my army was Plasma, I would probably dip out. If he had 3 flyers and I had none, I would probably say ‘do you mind if I drop these 100 points and put in a ADL and quad cannon?’ Why the hell waste time, which you point out is precious, fighting things you literally cannot hurt?

        • Muz86

          I’m not suggesting it takes a lengthy discussion, nor does it have to be perfectly balanced. Normally looking at two lists, provided you have enough knowledge on both, you can quite quickly determine if one is well outmatched and bring them fairly close. We did the example I gave with no trial and error, simply said ok we’ll remove the unit of deathmarks, a couple wraiths and put the overlord on foot vs on a CCB. The two lists then actually looked fair against each other and played that way.

          • denzark

            Muz – I get it that the Americans seem to drive a long distance and get into pick up games. I still don’t know why their FLGS – with all their supposed excellent customer services – can’t run a free blogsite with forum capabilities – where customers can arrange games prior to arrival – so there is no going in blind and getting smoked by a hugely superior army.

          • Muz86

            I completely agree, I live in the UK so I don’t have such logistical issues. But even given that, as you’ve said, a quick discussion and agreement between both players can quickly balance the game.
            I personally don’t get any joy out of a game where the other player can’t hurt my units or when it’s vice versa. I’d be surprised if many people do.
            All the above said, I do think that if GW continue to release the remaining codexes at the current power level (since last necrons release) then it would go a long way in sorting this issue.

          • MikeD

            “…both players can quickly balance the game. ”

            Isn’t this what we pay GW to do?

          • Zingbaby

            Since when dude?

          • MikeD

            Since they referred to their books as rule books. I started playing 40K because it was sold as a GAME. It was a reasonable assumption they’d try to make it a fair game. That’s gotten worse over the years to the point that I rarely play.

          • Zingbaby

            They’ve had rulebooks since RT and they’ve never been balanced. There is already quite a bit of discussion regarding just that in these comments here.

            Everyone always says it’s ‘worse now’ than prior; but I’ve been having this same exact discussion since I’ve had internet access.

            And if you’re not playing how do you know this?

          • MikeD

            If this discussion has been going on so long, perhaps it is worth investigating?

            I have played with 7th edition rules with the most recent codex for my armies and the armies I play against. That gives me a pretty good idea of how it is now. That’s why I’ve stopped playing. I don’t like the rules and I don’t wan to do a game designer’s job for them.

          • denzark

            You pay GW for books or models. If you can find in writing anywhere that GW agreed to provide a balanced game via their products, please reference it. If not, the answer to your question is ‘No’.

          • MikeD

            You sound like a lawyer.

            Okay, enough insults.

            I’m honestly having trouble understanding why you are going through such efforts to defend the rules as they are today. I didn’t sign a contract with GW full of fine print that expressly states what I’m getting. I read some of the material, looked over the armies and thought it looked like a cool game. It seemed reasonable to assume the rules would be well written and balanced. You seem to be looking at things from the perspective of someone who has been in the hobby for a decade, not a new-ish player.

            I have been in the hobby for a decade and as such, I have stopped buying their offerings due to all the reasons listed above. When I first purchased the game I made all of those reasonable assumptions. Over time, they have only proven more and more incorrect. From this perspective I would have a hard time suggesting people pick up this game and as a veteran I’m sad to see things get worse over time.

          • denzark

            Firstly, if you have voted with your feet as you say, good for you! You have exercised democracy and capitalism in one go. I must admit I have absolutely no idea why you are bothering to trawl a 220+ comment trail of a game you no longer play.
            Secondly, I have not intended to comment on the rules either positively or negatively although it may come across. I have been playing this for 25 years and some stuff gives me double face palm.
            What I am trying to comment on is the sense of entitlement or unrealistic expectations that some people have regarding balance in the game. I THINK – I don’t know for a fact, but I THINK that GW are not hugely interesting in generating good feeling and brand loyalty by rules. This is based on some of the themes repeatedly stated in financial documents.
            If you are not playing 40K and not buying 40K products, you have even less ‘right’ to expect anything from the company than an actual customer. Why in that case you are back to harangue 40K players who are muddling through to achieve a level of enjoyment, I have no idea.
            ………………………………………………….
            ………………………………………………….
            I have left a couple of lines there for you to big up Warmahordes though.

          • MikeD

            Let’s take your analogy and go a bit further. Yes, I voted! The state of things hasn’t changed. What next? Perhaps get out in the community and try to get some things to change.

            I keep up with the game because I think it could be something good, perhaps great and I look for signs that it might be well worth returning to. So I come here, read articles, then comment on the state of the game hoping to make points that will lead more people to try to get a well written, clear, balanced set of rules or find a compelling argument as to why it’s fine the way it is. That’s why I’m still here. I don’t play but I am still interested.

            You’ve been playing for 25 years and you haven’t agreed with all the rules. Well done.

            Finally, there’s your comment on sense of entitlement. You’re right, I do have a sense of entitlement because I’m entitled to a good game. I am entitled to this because it is how the game was marketed. it was what I thought I was purchasing when I first picked it up. Now before you go on about how it’s about the hobby and how GW is a model company etc. please remember, that is NOT how the game is marketed and NOT why most people pick up their products. They see games in the store. Games in the store, not models on display. They want to play out those cool fights of their own so they get some plastic and join in. You often see new people with unpainted armies because they purchased a GAME, not a bunch of models. Now tell me, why is it unreasonable for me to expect a well made game? Sure, there are no guarantees in life but the fact the game has gotten worse in terms of balance, not better, makes me want to speak out and so therefore I am doing so. Again, something to which I am entitled.

            As far as GW’s treatment of the community, they have their head in the sand. They act like they’re the only game out there that caters to wargamers. For a long time, this was mostly true. So yes, I will bring up War Machine and Hordes. I will also bring up Flames of War and Infinity. Not because they’re superior games but because they are competition with GW and clearly put a lot of work into their rules. They’re different games, sure, but the level of effort put into each company’s rules is much higher for Privateer Press than Games Workshop when it comes to balance. I’m saying this to make a point, not to say WM is more fun. In fact, I like it quite a bit less. Not because it has bad rules but because it’s not the kind of game I want to play.

            Now if you didn’t have time to read that, let me sum up. I’m here because I like 40K and want it to be a better game I can return to and enjoy.

          • denzark

            No, I did you the credit of reading in full. I’ve just sort of elected to take the rough with the smooth. You’ve elected not to. But I can’t get into your decision cycle. What is being offered isn’t what you ‘signed up for’ – fine. But when you got in in 2005 it was what, 4th ed? But no one expects a company to eternally support old product, a built in life expiry is expected. Sure I would have preferred to not have my Knight codex expire without having played a game. But I made an adult decision to part with money. That is a different proposition to what I initially replied to – your comment ‘Isn’t [balance] what we pay GW for?’ The answer for me is ‘No’ I don’t expect after 7 editions to be given anything beyond rough balance and the answer for you is also ‘No’ – because ostensibly you don’t pay GW for anything at the moment!

          • MikeD

            We pay GW to put out a balanced game. Just because they haven’t doesn’t mean they shouldn’t, or even couldn’t. Once they do, I WILL start paying them again.

          • benn grimm

            Our local club uses facebook, works just fine for arranging games.

          • Me

            Actually… Some of them do.

          • false-emperor

            Why is that a third party retailers (FLGS) job? That is the manufacturers (GW’s) job.
            Just as all the other than GW companies do.

          • denzark

            Umm – because the FLGS are where people seem to be playing 40K – not in one man GW stores. Why would GW have a facility to arrange a social interaction in a competitor’s shop?

        • MikeD

          The bigger point here is GW is charging you for the opportunity to play test and adjust their rules. Something they should be doing because that’s what we paid them to do.

          • Zingbaby

            Except they don’t charge you – you choose to buy. Don’t buy then. You’re welcome.

          • MikeD

            So you’re suggesting I leave the hobby? That I make up my own rules? How is this a win for anyone?

          • Zingbaby

            If you’re unhappy with your purchase – don’t purchase more! …you don’t have to! I realize quitting 40K is harder than cigarettes, but if you don’t like it – why keep buying and expecting something that has never been and likely never will be?

          • MikeD

            Again, I don’t see why you’re solution to an issue with the game’s design is to just leave the hobby. This is bad for everyone involved. Why do you defend bad rules? Why would improving balance hurt the hobby?

            I’m no power gamer. I write up a list that basically includes some guns for shooting up the enemy dudes. Some guns to shoot enemy vehicles. Some guys to capture objectives. Some fun units I like the rules for. Based on this balanced approach I should be able to play a fair game with a good chance of winning if I outplay my opponent.

          • Zingbaby

            Honestly I agree with all of this – but still the choice is yours. GW doesn’t force you to buy, and at least at this point – you should have a good idea what you’re getting for your money – even if you’d like something better.

          • MikeD

            If you agree with me, why are you arguing with me? I never said I was forced to buy anything. I never said I was forced to play the game. In fact, I’ve stopped playing due to these issues. Again, you seem to think an unhappy customer leaving the hobby is a good thing. Why is that?

          • Zingbaby

            I pretty much always chafe at the idea of GW ‘forcing’ people to do stuff, or “charging” for something that you voluntarily purchased. That said, most of your argument is pretty sound and again, I don’t disagree.

          • MikeD

            Now you’re just being pedantic. Change everything instance you think I say I’m being forced or charged and change it to, “In order to continue to enjoy my hobby I must pay.” Happy now?

          • Zingbaby

            Hah well yes. Like I said, I chafe because there are people here that say things like:

            “dodicula: • 37 minutes ago

            Blame the victim, I love it”

          • Xodis

            Its because people continue to purchase the rules that dont work that GW continues to make them. You dont need to leave the hobby, just leave GW behind.
            Honestly I believe its the lack of sales that turned WHFB into AoS. Like it or leave it, they made an attempt to better a game that no one liked enough to keep buying into.
            So if everyone that felt the rules were not worth the price, would stop buying, maybe GW would make a better attempt to make the rules better.

          • MikeD

            Sadly, I’ve already stopped buying from them. That’s why I’m so upset with them and the state of the game. Hopefully if enough people do so they’ll be picked up by a better gaming company.

          • Xodis

            I have too, I just watch patiently while playing other games. I hope someday they fix it all, and if not, well I still have my other games 😀

          • MikeD

            That’s my current plan for my hobby time too. Still, shouldn’t we be annoyed at GW for the state of their game? More importantly, shouldn’t we let that be known? Sure, vote with your wallet but make it clear it’s due to the quality of their rules so they get the right message.

          • Xodis

            I honestly think they already know. How couldn’t they, even an ostrich with its head in the sand could hear all the anguish.

          • Drathmere

            I think the arguments are going off track here. The point is not to have you or anyone else leave the hobby MikeD. I think the point was that spending some time prior to a game to discuss the nature of the game is a great way to enjoy the experience. It allows coming sense to prevail, and for both players to enjoin the game. After all, that is the point, not winning. A 10 minute discussion prior to a 3+ hour game does not seem that onerous to me. It seems like a really good investment in time.

          • MikeD

            I don’t have a problem discussing the game. I enjoy working out how to set up the table and any interesting objectives we want to play. What I do have a problem with is coming up with ways to balance the game when that’s GW’s job.

          • Ben_S

            You seem to equate the hobby with 40k. I think the point was that, if you want a balanced game, 40k has never been one. Try a different game.
            If you prefer 40k to balance, so be it, but there’s no point complaining about lack of balance, because you chose to buy a game that’s never had balance.

          • MikeD

            I purchased this GAME because it was sold to me as a GAME. You see people in your GAMING store playing GAMES that made me take an interest. GAMEs Workshop puts out rules to play their GAME so yeah, I assumed the thing was a game. Strange right?

            I will never understand the argument that since the game never was balanced, it never should be. When you buy a game you rightly assume it was put together to be fun and provide a nice balanced competition. Every game. No exceptions. So I got my rules and my models and started playing and had fun. I found a few problems but hey, look, a new edition! That’ll work out some of the glitches and imbalances! Now, how are any of these assumptions are flawed based on what the rest of the gaming industry is doing, please tell me.

          • euansmith

            It wouldn’t be so bad if they adjusted rules to reflect the “play testing”.

          • Mike Siegmund

            You mean like FAQs and stuff

    • false-emperor

      exactly this, whose level of “fair” or “casual” are we to play by? Overpowered to one, is fluff to another, there is NO denying this, no matter how many times the Interwebs regurgitates; toy soldiers, waac, and etc. in an attempt to shame players.
      Play how you want is never a topic, as you can always do that.

      • Autumnlotus

        I do understand your point, but players need to recognize that codexes are not balanced against each other. Just because your spiritseer/wraithknight army makes sense in Lore doesn’t mean it’s any less of an annoyance when used against the local Sisters army player.

        • Charon

          But you can harly blame the player for playing somethin he likes, right? In fact it is the same if you rant on the sisters player because he happens to like a rather weak army when he just could pick a stronger one to make battles more even.

          • Autumnlotus

            Oh I know. It’s why I blame GW, every model should be useful in its own way, but not OP. But until then I advocate using the unofficial tier system for armies. Eldar to Necrons and SMs, blood angels to space wolves and tau, and sisters to dark eldar and Orks. Obviously it’s a loose system, and can be mixed because of play skill and list building, but generally sisters should never fight eldar or vice versa

          • Charon

            Which is again “fixing it” when the article claims it aint broken if you dont intentionally break it.

          • Autumnlotus

            Which I agree with, it is a broken game. It’s a fun one, but broken as sin. Trust me, I’ve played against the new SM and DA armies, watched as my CSM get Murdered super hard even with a daemon summoning list and land raiders. You can FEEL the power difference of the two marine faction sides, its obvious

      • MikeD

        I think most people who play casually write up a list that has a good mix of firepower to take out hard and soft targets, some units to capture objectives, and some cool stuff we like to see on the table.

    • Zingbaby

      I pretty much agree with this article — but, as you’ve noted, there are some match-ups that make even casual games amongst reasonable folks difficult on occasion. As others have noted; it’s really _always_ been this way, but I know that doesn’t make it any less disappointing (and boring) when some Leafblower sweeps your army off the table with no effort.

      One thing to try is – varied styles/mods of play. Don’t just stick to the standard rulebook missions. We play a ton of Apocalypse too, which is fun for everyone though that isn’t easily attainable for many groups/clubs.

      The last big DE versus Eldar game here the guys used (loosely) the Planetstrike model. The DE fortified up with flankers in reserve; they also held an Eldar unit captive in their fortress (unusable until freed); then the Eldar had to come destroy the fortress (without killing it’s own guys) and set them free, then retreat. The chase on the retreat was the best part.

      In just the straight “chess match”, ‘line up and kill’ games 40K as a whole, has never really worked well. I know some folks prefer “competitive” play, but 40K simply works better as a narrative game.

      • Charon

        Which still would be “fixing the game” which you should not need to do as the article points out because it is not broken in the first place until you do so on purpose.

        • Zingbaby

          Planetstrike, for example, is part OF the game. It’s not a fix, and it certainly doesn’t work [fix] in all cases.

          My point being – 40K has _never_ worked as a ‘chess match’ type of game with 2 perfectly equal forces facing off on 2 perfectly equal battleground surfaces with perfectly equal objectives (like no war ever in history).

          • Charon

            They do not have to be perfect. They will never be perfect. But the difference between CSM and SM or Eldar and DE is nowhere near ANY reasonable amount of balance. It is just a curbstomp for the stronger book no matter what mission you play as both armies share every characteristic but one army is just chaper, can cover their weakness better or has more/stronger options.
            You would say DE are faster than Eldar, because that is their theme, right? No they are not. Eldar are faster while having better armor. So how about the weapons? Surely the Glascannon is strong? Nope. There is D, S6 and rending on all weapons on the other side. But at least DE cost less points right? Nope. A unit of 4 Blasterborn with 4 Blasters is more expensive than a unit of 5 Fire Dragons with 5 Fusion Guns, Melta Bombs, same stats, Battle focus, +1 BS, better armor and a special rule that makes them blow up things more easy. To make them even points, the Eldar have to add an exarch.

            There is no mission that will ever even that out.

          • Zingbaby

            If you saw one of my earlier posts – I really don’t disagree with you dude.

            Like 3rd edition Blood Angels – unless the mission forbade Rhinos and/or Assaulting they were massively OP and these types of imbalanced match-ups do (have always) exist[ed]… and it’s tough to make a fair game because of it.

            My point really is that this is ‘less’ of an issue when the goal of your game is something other than just ‘a win’; and ‘less’ an issue when you focus on a narrative theme rather than the “chess match” trying to pit 2 perfectly equal forces on equal terrain with equal objectives.

            How is this achieved for “tournament” play? …I dunno, but 40K has never really been the solution for tournament play.

          • Charon

            The difference is that 3rd edition blood angels had to WANT to build that way to get these advantages. The had to BUILD a rhino rush list. There is no way a Blood angels army consisting of Devastor squads and with only 2 Rhinos will have the same impact.
            The difference here is that Eldar are basically this rhino rush army whitout even building that way. It does not matter what units they take they will ALWAYS end up beeing that rhino rush army. There is no way they can not be that as they are just stronger in every single aspect.

            Rhino rush is a BUILD. You can decide not to go for that build. Eldar is a faction. You can not decide your Eldar not to be Eldar.

          • Zingbaby

            ALL Blood Angels had free Furious Charge, despite any BUILD, and the SM transport was the Rhino – it wasn’t some fringe “build”.

            I know the point you are trying to make are that (7th ed) Eldar are more broken than broken codex of the past, and maybe you are right. Though I believe we saw more ‘Leafblower’ type blowouts in 5th edition than we do now. Anyway, I’d agree the current Eldar book is broken.

            In either case – see my second point.

          • Zingbaby

            Further I’d like to add, I’ve had this EXACT discussion about certain codex during every single edition of 40K since 3rd edition. I didn’t have easy internet access prior to that. 🙂

          • Charon

            The only situation that was somewhat close was Grey Knight vs Daemons (5th) which was an auto win for Grey knights. Everything else was just builds. you can discuss builds. you can alter builds. You don’t have to take a Lash Prince. Nobody is forcing you.
            But in Dameons vs Grey Knights it was not the build but the codex which made it an impossible uphill battle. Not hard to alter a build to make it more even. Hard to alter the entire faction.

          • davepak

            This. This is what so many do not get.

            Every one cries “It will never be perfect!” – as a rebuttal to those who want more balance.

            No one who has ever said they want it to be perfect – they just want a reasonable attempt at better – which considering where its at, and a total lack of involvement in the player base – would not be hard.

    • Ebon Hand

      I’m sorry but I disagree. I havehad plenty of good casual games with and against Dark Eldar. You cannot simply blame the codex. Many factors play into a win or loss: dice rolling, mission, what units were taken and most importantly, what the player chose to do. Stop blaming the game and the codexes.

      40k is more fun than it has been in years, and this is coming from someone who lost his last 3 games. Do I blame the Decurion, grotesques, eldrad, or eldar wraithknights?

      No, I take my losses like a man and play better next time.

      The acceptance of defeat is an invitation for it’s repetition.

      • Autumnlotus

        What army did u use against darn eldar? What list generally? I ask because I play dark eldar, at least until this version half way through, and I stopped playing because I lost every single game I played with the new codex unless I focussed entirely on the Haemonculus cult formations, against non-SM armies

        • Ebon Hand

          I play Black Templars, it was a cad with a land raider and a bunch of vehicles and he was indeed playing a heamonculous coven with a cad of de codex to add bunch of scourges in. He also had 3 Talos and a titan pain engine (counts as wraithknight with sword and shield, no shooting weps ) Neither of us was using any formations.

          At first he thought he was screwed because he had few things to hurt the land raider aside from his scourges (which were refusing to come in) and his 2 raiders (which had to jink) and the wraithknight, but I also thought I was screwed, because I had nothing in my army that could even hurt the wraithknight besides a plasmacannon, plasma gun, and my dreadnought.

          So I simply played around it, I used the plasma squad in a razorback as a decoy
          and with some flat out moves and a failed charge by the knight, it did nothing but chase for half the game. It finally caught up to the battle and blew the land raider up and then stomped both my HQ s into paste. Ultimately it was his scourges and a flat out raider that won him the game by taking objectives.

          The game was awesome, marines fought a bloody battle with wracks and grotesques and my emperors champion slew an arcothist, a heamonculus, and one shotted a grotesque champion. He would have killed his warlord as well if the knight hadn’t come in and stepped on him lol.

          TL;DR Had an awesome game against de and lost because of 99 reasons, but the codex ain’t one, and I’m not even mad bro

          • Autumnlotus

            So he used a wraith knight? Or is was just the model? Not saying that’s how he one, I believe that is the supplement plus pimpin scourges, but allying in a wraithknight detracts from the argument a bit. It’s the same how I feel for sisters of battle: yes I can ally in inquisitors for cheap psykers and land raiders, bit that doesn’t change that the base army has to cherry pick units to be decent

          • Ebon Hand

            Yeah I see what you mean, allying the wraithknight does detract a bit since de don’t naturally have any MCs that strong, but I don’t see anything wrong with allies. The imperium was able to do it back in 4th edition through the witch hunters and deamon hunter codexes, so I can’t fault the xenos races for finally being able to do it. The Dark Eldar will get their own Lord of War unit one day… one Vector gets back from the vacation he took to remodel his tower.

          • Autumnlotus

            I just want my options back for the HQs, the haywire grenades and drugs for who had them last edition, and for my Headtaker to come back to me D:

          • Hiphopopotamus

            you mean the wyches? tbh how haywire has changed is better, can be thrown 8″ and used on the same turn on the charge now and a lot of squad leaders and HQ’s can have them… i think they are better the way it has changed, tbh 5 man warrior squads are nasty as a troop selection now, blaster shot haywire grenade at 8″, charge then HTH with haywire. 5 man scourge squads are cheap as chips, i don’t know why you want the full squad of wyches with them back unless you are one of these guys that still uses wyches a lot. I think the only terrible unit in our codex atm is wyches, they don’t suck, they just don’t work well until late game.

          • Autumnlotus

            I own about 30 wyches and 2 succubi, the latter being conversions, so yeah I want them useful again. I know kabalite warriors are useful, but dislike having to rely on them to win any combats. The scourges are the only unit I can say I’m happy about. Worst offender though? The model for the Succubus they made last is monopose and its weapons are impossible to have in the game. You can’t have an agonizer and glaive on the same model

          • Hiphopopotamus

            tbh succubi are still great, its archons that irk me.. silly points just to make them mediocre in HTH, i remember when archons and succubi too used to be killing machines and could stand toe to toe with the best HQ’s in the game, sadly those days are gone, succubi still are pretty good though, but a lot of luck involved when taking damage, archons really needs a good AP2 weapon…

            I feel your pain on the wyches though i have 40 of them and they have been pretty unusable, if they would make the dodge work on snap fire i would take them again tbh. its angering when ya lose half a squad to some lucky shooting. though they still are pretty wicked late game when PFP kicks in, but it still imo doesn’t warrant their cost when they are so inferior to kabalites atm.

          • Autumnlotus

            Yeah the biggest irk to me was when my archon from a narrative campaign became unusable. Used the lhamian model with the stats being clone field venom blade and a host of wyches as an honor guard. Sadly now archons have less options then even a necron lord, because the monopose archon models didn’t have that equipment on the sprue…but eldar hqs ignored that logic

          • Hiphopopotamus

            the funny thing is, all the models kits were designed to be used across different units which didn’t make any sense, one of my pet peeves with the codex too now that you mention it. I have no doubt that codex was designed that way to sell the coven codex that followed, such a terrible job, but not so terrible that it was unplayable, no clue what they were thinking on that tbh.

          • Ebon Hand

            There was an faq they put out to allow that setup iirc, but you could always just choose which one you want and count the other as a ccw

          • Autumnlotus

            True but I disliked the models to begin with :p I plan to make a custom haemonculus too, because the new one looks half done

          • Charon

            They could always be thrown, used on the same turn as the charge and was available on all squad leaders. No change here. the only change is that Wyches lost them and not even Bloodbrides get them.
            Also haywire blasters are only available on Scourges. Dont know what codex you are playing.

          • Hiphopopotamus

            should read “blaster shot, haywire grenades at 8”. i missed an important comma there.. i thought this change only happened in 7th? i could be wrong i have not been playing as much tbh nor do i have the old codex to check availability on squad leaders before. I noticed the change in 7th but i could be wrong. However imo this gives us more options for anti-tank that i have started using a lot

          • Charon

            How does this give us MORE AT options when it is the same as before und they removed the Wyches as an AT option completely? Less is suddenly more?

    • euansmith

      Casual Dark Eldar vs Casual Eldar?

      • Only Seeking Snarky Lols

        in the grim darkness of the 1970th millennium, there are only bellbottoms

    • sethmo

      Bull. The issue with csm is the same as dark eldar, you are unwilling to change.
      So your all witches army doesnt work anymore. Waaaahhhh my army sucks.

      The issues with MOST codices is crap list building not codex.

      • Charon

        I havent seen any DE player using wyches for years not. No idea what you are talking about.

    • Aaron Tyler Moore

      That’s flawed logic from the start csm can be taken in units of 20 with 5 I and fnp so I’ll take that over 2 tax squads with a single heavy option

      • Charon

        Whaat? a unit of 20 CSM with FnP an I5 (Slaanesh that is) is going to cost you 340 (!) points. For a big ass unit that is walking across the field and runs away and gets swept as soon as it loses a combat. Also you get 2 special (or 1 special and one heavy) weapons for this squad. And you need a second squad as this is only 1 troop choice.<
        If you want to take this over 20 regular space marines with 2 special weapons and 2 heavy weapons which can split into 4 individual units where every single model has to be killed, then there are some basics you might not have understood.

    • Aaron Tyler Moore

      And the dark Eldar are you high just because Eldar have d wepons doesn’t mean jack Eldar is a spec ops list each op has its own spec and if you throw one wrench into their plan the whole machine can fall apart.

      • Charon

        You should not try to write if you are dead drunk or high.

  • comrade_nikolai

    No one changes your beer for a broken one halfway through your drinking it. You’ve pushed the analogy too far and your argument isn’t valid in the face of edition changes/codex revisions.

    • Ebon Hand

      Analogies are like a toilet with no seat, someone gets butthurt or misses the target completely and crap gets everywhere. Or… or something. Ok analogies suck. Not saying you are butthurt comrade but you are missing the point.

      Players don’t HAVE to break the game is his point. No one has to drop 400 something dollars on 4 wraithknights so they can crown themselves king of 40 k. If everyone talked to their opponents and took a list that is fun for both players and not just themselves, the 40k is broken cries would not exist.

      • Charon

        You don’t have to buy 4 Wraithknights. ONE is enought. That is when something is broken from start. If you get called out as WAAC player by just using ONE unit from your codex.
        So don’t act as “the 40k is broken cries would not exist” when entire armies are broken no matter what you pick.

        • Ebon Hand

          A single wraithknight? Yes it is undercosted but I wouldn’t call someone WAAC for using it. A single round of shooting from grav cents will statistically down it, even with FnP and that is if don’t count the chest missiles. You can add prescience and codex doctrines easily if you want better odds.

          And before you say ‘what about DE’, yes they are lacking in hard counters but they have access to wraithknights themselves, as well as webway portaling in fire dragons or better yet, some wraithguard.

          This is nothing new guys, 40k has always had poorly balanced units, but its the players themselves that choose to break the game. If you really hate the wraithknight, just politely ask your opponent to bring something else! I’m sure they would be cool about it, and if not then it probably wasn’t going to be a fun game anyway.

          • Charon

            So basically because a undercosted and overly powerful unit from one of the strongest codices can easily deal with it, it becomes “not a problem”.
            News for you: Space Marines are the same power level. Grav Cents are also not “friendly”.

            And while I am on the way of bringing my own fire dragons and Wraithknight and Wraithguard into my Dark Eldar army… why even bother with Dark Eldar anyways as I just replaced everything with Eldar anyways while my main army may play cab driver for the more powerful army.

            The point is: There is no level playing field where I can ask my opponent to just remove units I don’t like. This attitude is horrible. You basically say “Play as I want or you are a horrible person” Which makes you even more unfun to play with than the guy that wants to keep his paid and painted Wraithknight.

          • Ebon Hand

            I understand what you mean, but I’m definitely not trying to say “play as I want”. Me personally, I’m an anything goes type of guy, but I would rather know if you plan to bring a wraithknight so that I can being my grav cents and make a game out of it. Likewise, if you are playing something a little softer then I’d love to bring some of my ‘crappy’ units so that we could have a fun game.

            You dont even need grave cents, a single grav gun will concuss it and you can slaughter it with assault cents, widely regarded as a crap unit. Or even shooty termies. I use marines as an example because they ate common but all armies have answers for 6 t8 fnp wounds.

            I agree that it isn’t a level playing field if you have to ask your opponent to remove a unit you don’t like. That is why I don’t do that. I like my playing field not to be level. Not everyone does though, hence why you can talk to your opponent and come a ‘gentleman’s agreement’ as I’ve heard it been called.

            This will be a poor analogy, but I hope it illustrates my point: countries go to war with each other, and not all countries have nukes, but countries don’t use nukes in every war because the planet would be a wasteland not worth warring over.

            If you want to nuke me though, bring it!

          • Nic Hughes

            Ah yes, grav cents. My kroot army laughs at grav cents and sends them home in boxes (minus the tasty bits, obviously).
            They used to so the same to Wraithknights but now they are gargantuans it definitely takes at least a round of shooting from all the troops to drop one of those monsters.

            Wraithguard? My T3 W1 horde with 6+ saves cares not for your silly D weapons.

            So what point costs should all those units have? Against me the grav cents are overcosted. Against the eldar wraithknight they are undercosted.

  • false-emperor

    They know exactly what they’ve done. It’s not as though they thought the game was remotely fair and balanced. It wasn’t like when a King first learned of Chess, or Go, and knew these were epic games destined to become the greatest gaming achievements of all time.

    I imagine whoever first cooked up the idea to make the new GW games as of late probably didn’t even play them. They kind of got the gist and thought, “eh, it’s garbage but it’ll probably make a
    billion dollars because we can vomit just about anything into the
    trough and fanboyz will come in droves to devour it.”

    😉

  • Gorsameth

    Yes, Damn those players for making a Scatterlaser Jetbike so cheap.
    oh wait….

    People spend several hundred dollars on this hobby, damn them for expecting more then a shrug from GW when it comes to balance for the game that uses those models.

    GW sees itself as a model company, their own words. We are not players, we are collectors.
    The results of that mentality are plain to see. Fantasy died because not enough people wanted what GW offered. 40k despite its fastest release ever with tons of big sellers still made less money then the year before.

    the GW bottle is broken, its beer (money) is leaking out. They had better try to fix the bottle.

    • false-emperor

      well said.

  • Vomkrieg

    A curious piece of apologism. While no game can be truly balanced, it’s impossible (even chess isn’t 50/50), it is a goal game designers should strive for.

    Suggesting that attempting to add some form of balance to a game isn’t in any way shape of form a game developers job is…. frankly bizarre.

    Balance isn’t just for Tournaments or the much demonized WAAC player. Many people like to play games that feel “fair”. When you have to go “hold on mate, that looks spammy/cheesy/broken”, then there is something wrong with the game, not the players.

    In no other game industry would you see someone say “the designers don’t need to make this game fair, it’s not mean’t to be fair”, whether than is miniature gaming, board gaming, card gaming or computer gaming.

    I believe that blaming players for the quality of a game is an incredibly poor position and one that would not be remotely accepted in virtually any other fandom.

    • false-emperor

      Well said.
      Chess and Go are only unbalanced depending upon who goes first, and that is random, and then alternated, or loser goes first etc.

      • Vomkrieg

        One thing i love to bring up, is that Netrunner. An LCG with hundreds of cards and deck variations, has a win/loss percentage on OCTGN (online platform) of 50.3/49.7 with 120k games played.

        That’s closer than chess, and a sign that complex games can be balanced with enough effort.

        • false-emperor

          Great example, I have played 16k team games with strangers on World of Tanks, and have a 47% win rate with 40 different tanks from all levels (I do not platoon or play with a clan) most have a hovering around 50% + –

        • AdeptusAstartes

          Does that prove the game is balanced?

          I flipped a coin 100 times and it came up 50 heads and 50 tails, is that balanced, or is there just no player-ability factor involved, and the result randomly determined.

          I’ve played Netrunner, and got smashed by guys with bespoke build decks and lots of games under their belts, and I’ve won against newer players than me who knew a little bit less about the game than I did. I’m still losing a lot more than I win … does my experience prove the game is balanced or unbalanced.

          There is no causal link between the win-loss ratio of a player when pitched against potentially hundreds of thousands of opponents, and the ‘subjective’ estimation of a games internal balance.

          If you work with big enough numbers then eventually the statistics gravitate to the mean.

          • Gorsameth

            Thats a great misunderstanding of statistics.
            If I throw a weighted dice a million times it will not become even by the miracle of “big numbers”. It will gravitate to the mean but that mean is not necessarily the middle.

            If Netrunner has a serious corp or runner bias it will reflect that bias regardless of how big your number of games becomes

          • AdeptusAstartes

            I didn’t say the mean was the middle, and I think you’ve misappropriated my coin example and extrapolated to support an unrelated example.
            The fixed dice is however the perfect example of something that is broken, because no matter what level of input I, the thrower of the die, has, the mean result will still be the same i.e. the number that the loaded die is weighted to. It may vary slightly depending upon the influence of the surface that you throw it on, but over a sufficiently large number of throws you would expect to see the mean gravitate to the loaded number – otherwise it wouldn’t necessarily be loaded!
            If 40k as a rules set were truly broken, then the input of the gamer would have no influence over the result of the game. What occurs with 40k is that players pick the units that represent the best chance of winning. This is the decision of the player, not the game.
            If Netrunner had a bias toward one corp or runner, then the figures would still eventually end up around 50-50 – those that played the corp or runner, and those that played against them. One player would win, the other player would lose.
            I’m assuming, however, that vomkrieg is stating that across all corps and runners, each one in turn has a win/loss ratio of 50/50. Again, this isn’t evidence of a balanced game, because the factors introduced by the players makes the list of possible other influencing variables too great. If two players of equal skill played each other with the same corps and runners and one player was technically unable to beat the other player if the winning player employed a particular strategy, then you could deduce that the game is unbalanced. But the imbalance occurs only in the situation of the particular strategy when played against a particular corp or runner. That’s basically why I don’t accept that a game with the breadth and depth of 40k, with it’s many variables, and even greater variability in the player base, can ever categorically be stated to be broken.

          • Vomkrieg

            So experienced players beat you and you beat new players?

            Sounds about right to me for most games that I wouldn’t put in the “casual” and/or “lite” category like Red Dragon Inn and Exploding kittens.

            A coin toss is not a game as there are no meaningful decisions to be made. This is why snakes and ladders is also not really considered a game by people in the game design business.

            Netrunner has many moving parts and the runner/corp parity across so many games isn’t just “statistical intertia”. Your personal experience doesn’t invalidate the large data set that is sitting out there on the games balance.

    • AdeptusAstartes

      I think either I’ve misread your post, or you’ve misread the article. I’m not sure which at the minute.

      The article writer doesn’t suggest that the game developers of 40k have not attempted to add balance to 40k, in fact he writes quite the opposite. GW have put out what they consider a good rules set (the best they were able to produce at that time).

      Equally, gamers ‘adding balance’ to the rules set is another artefact of the social contract – balance in this sense is a matter of opinion, and subjectively determined to achieve what the balance-or wants in terms of ‘feel’ for the game. If you want to eliminate the chance of 5 x Wraithknights, 5 x Imperial Knights, or 5 x Pick-you-own-unit then you simply apply that restriction to bring what you, the balance-or, feels is balance.

      I’ve played various tournaments where the imposed ‘balance’ affects all areas of the rules set (I mean everything, allowable number of wounds per model, strength of weapons, size of units, etc., right up to allowable Artefacts, no spamming, limited numbers of slots) – and even one event where the organisers ‘balanced’ the attendees lists by stating … “if you don’t want to face it, then don’t bring it” … make of that what you will, but inevitably the most powerful lists possible within the points allocation turned up (again, power being in the eye of the beholder, but they were generally hard to kill, whilst being capable of killing a lot themselves). So, balance is subjective.

      Personally, I enjoyed this article, it expressed some simple truths about the gaming community as I have experienced it over the last 25 years.

      There are those gamers that do, those gamers that don’t want to but do anyway (sometimes unintentionally), those gamers that want to but don’t (usually), and those gamers that don’t.

      And normally we as individuals move along this spectrum of choice (because it is normally a choice). I’d consider myself to currently be in the ‘want to but don’t (usually)’. I build the powerful, crafted lists, then shelve them and play my usual middle of the road stuff against my friends, usually, and occasionally go full-on stupid and pull the Wraithknights/Monoliths/Knights/X-Stars off the shelves and visit carnage upon the gaming table.

      Ultimately, in 40k it’s choice that determines the ‘feel’ of the game we play.

      • Gorsameth

        If GW actively tried to balance the game and this is the best they can do they should fire all their designers.

        Either they are not trying or they are incompetent because no one can miss the broken stuff in codexes like Eldar.

        • AdeptusAstartes

          Just because it’s there, you don’t have to take it. I think that’s the whole point of the article above. Your choice.

          The issue is more that 40k presents a broad choice of variables, and you can gravitate towards the extremes of those choices (i.e. pick the out-liers), or you can stay with the middle of the road stuff (i.e. pick from the median or the mode).

          You choose when you build a list. And you build a list to meet the social contract that you have with your opponent. With friends, that will mean less power, than with Tournament opponents, where more power is required.

          • Gorsameth

            Really? The community should just ignore the existence of models in an attempt to pretend that the game is playable?

            And how does that relate to your point that GW is trying to balance and this is the best they can do?

            The best they can do is that several models are unplayable because of how broken/OP they are?
            Sounds like their doing a terrible job, which was my point.
            In any other field if your this bad you would get fired.

          • ChubToad

            Unplayable models? Which ones?

          • Gorsameth

            Scatterlaser Jetbikes/Wraithknights/Knights/Canoptyk Wraith formation/Grav Centurions/ectectectUnplaying? no. Will they utterly dominate a game if the opponent is not realy for them to the point where they give casual players a bad gaming experiance? Yes.

          • ChubToad

            So casual players don’t or can’t take those models too. Why?
            But still, what unplayable models plague the 40k universe?

          • euansmith

            Well there was GW’s short lived 40k Xtreme range that included the Dark Eldar Razorblade Doomball (with genuine, skin-slicing action) and the Actually Toxic Antimony Marines and the Contagious Anthrax Warriors. Those are now all unplayable… Thank you Health & Safety 🙁

          • ChubToad

            I heard of that game. Lots of balance issues with that one. Seems Anthrax Warriors players died before even starting the game, so they had to comp that army. And DE Razorblades demanded to throw the dice on another table to avoid cuts. And players spammed them like there’s no tomorrow so their opponents couldn’t play at all. Poor design on GWs part as always.

          • mE

            Did you miss the conversation?
            Adeptus Astartes says we should chose not to take those good units so the game stays balanced.
            Unplayable means to powerful in this case, and no. I don’t agree with that idea at all.

          • ChubToad

            I understand it differently, that’s why I say “interpretations”. But I won’t convince you of my point of view and viceversa so, let’s move on.

          • Vomkrieg

            I hear good things about pyrovores 🙂

          • Charon

            So basically it is my job as a player to pick models which I dont enjoy playing and models which aesthetic I do not like to create a game that I will not enjoy because I am forced to play models I dont like so my opponent can play models he enjoys. Does this sum it up?

          • ChubToad

            That’s not what he said, but hey interpretations right?

          • Charon

            “Just because it’s there, you don’t have to take it.”

            Oh he pretty much said that. If I happen to like Serpents for example because they are featured as a transport for all kinds of small aspect squads in every eldar book I would have been called out as WAAC player in the last codex because I happen to like them and play multitudes of small aspect Squads in Serpents. Solution? Take less Serpents and take other models. If I do not enjoy that? Bad wrong fun.

          • ChubToad

            And why not? I’m sure 2 or 3 Wave Serpents are much more agreable than 7-8. Don’t you think?

          • Charon

            Actually I was only 3. Still called “spam”.
            And even if it is 7 or 8. If a player enjoys it, it is his right to play them. You have a whole army consisting of SH walkers. Perfectly legal and some people do enjoy them. Still makes them broken.

          • mE

            Eh… that is exactly what he said.

          • fabiobile

            people like to win most of the time. They will choose what is going to help them win. This game isn’t a wacky rpg.

          • Zingbaby

            Eh …I’d argue that 40K has always worked better as a narrative (RPG with miniatures)-ish game than a ‘chess match’ “competitive” game.

          • fabiobile

            I’ve never felt that way about the game

          • Zingbaby

            Many have not. But when you eliminate missions/scenarios and narrative from 40K it’s pretty much always fallen flat.

            My group has fun, laughs, get’s drunk and pokes fun at “unbalanced” match-ups when we play narrative missions – when we try the “chess match / competitive” games at least one person _always_ has a terrible time.

            Several of us have played since RT.

          • fabiobile

            I feel the opposite. Ex Rouge Trader, and until very recently, the game hasn’t reflected an rpg style much at all. The only exception we had to this was when we played massive battles before Apoc where nothing mattered.

          • Zingbaby

            By “nothing mattered” you mean units dying I assume? …rather than narrative?

            We love Apoc here and do it frequently (when folks have time). I totally know where you are coming from – most people choose to ignore variants styles of play, different missions, death worlds, spearhead, planetstrike, killteam, ZM etc… and only play the rulebook missions which are FAR from narrative. But really that’s a choice.

          • fabiobile

            By nothing mattered, I mean what many would describe as a beer an pretzels game. I would call it a sandbox game.

          • Zingbaby

            So it’s pretty ‘serious’ stuff in your group otherwise? I’m not condescending you, but this is a game with plastic toys – we just don’t take it that seriously. It’s a “sandbox” game to us I suppose – because it works.

          • fabiobile

            Hardly. Actually we were a pretty laid back crowd. The only two people within our group who were serious were a couple of math majors who were obsessed with list building. Surprisingly they were the ones who wanted to play more “narrative games”. Walking contradictions I suppose. Not serious about it, but some people are considering the financial investment and hundreds of hours painting.

          • Zingbaby

            I consider the financial investment – but that doesn’t make 40K into something it’s not (a tournament game), and never really has been.

            If I wake up tomorrow and suddenly expect 40K to be a tournament game, I hope someone get’s me to a doctor. Anyway your group sounds cool – hopefully you guys can find a way to have fun with your investments.

          • fabiobile

            Actually I’m not someone who plays in tournaments really. Maybe once a year or two at most.

          • euansmith

            I misread that as “cheese match” 😀

          • Zingbaby

            I try to have a nice cheese spread with cured meats for when the lads come over. 😀

          • ChubToad

            Can I come too?

          • chip6793

            Adeptus,

            Well written response and pretty much how I interpreted the article. As you can tell, just in the interpretation of this article and your response, the writer was pretty much on the ball, at least from what I’ve read.

            Funny enough, even if ALL codex were “balanced”, I’m sure we (gamers) would find a way to break it, as was the apparent intent of the article.

            Ultimately it’s a game and regardless of what rules are out there, there is still a social aspect of the game which needs to be considered.

          • Wildzero

            So if all codexes were balanced gamers would still try to break them, then GW shouldn’t even attempt to make them balanced. Why even use any rules then? Why not just play pretend?

          • Zingbaby

            Wait – 40K is not pretend, do your miniatures really die?!? Somebody call the activists!

          • euansmith

            “Pew! Pew! Pew!”

          • Stormcaller

            Thanks for getting to the intention of the article. And as I said at the end, why do we keep finding someone to blame? Just play the game in the environment of your choice.

        • benn grimm

          I think all the decent designers left, hence the incompetence.

      • Vomkrieg

        I see your point.

        My main point was that because of how the game is designed, you have to put up artificial player constructed barriers to balance it. That does not point to good design, it points to poor design from the developers.

        The more you “house rule” a game, in general, the poorer the job the game developers have done.

        The fact that, as you say, you can go ” full-on stupid” within the rules, says there is a problem with how the rules stand.

        The fact you call a legal list, constructed within the rules of the game as they stand ” full-on stupid” is quite telling. You clearly get that the game is extremely easy to break.

        My issue is that this article seems to blame players for imbalance while abdicating the designer from that role. A curious position that would be untenable in any many other fandoms.

  • Benoit Tremblay

    This is for all of you min-maxers hell bent on finding the best combos and playing only the troops with the best stats. You’re making everyone angry. Why are so many people pissed at Age of Sigmar? because they know some people won’t play fair and square and some scumbags will break the game.

    • false-emperor

      An there goes the shaming, right on que, congratz on your 4th post!

      • Benoit Tremblay

        I’m not sure what your point is. Should I post more before I’m entitled to an opinion? Are you part of the min-maxer defense league? Anyways congrats on making me not want to be part of the discussion. I’ve been visiting BoLS for years.

        • Malisteen

          You’re missing the point. The problem with 7th is that you don’t NEED to min max for the game to be broken. Little Johnny likes Dark Eldar. Little Timmy likes Eldar. Little Timmy thinks the newer models jet bikes and wraith guard and the wraith knight – look the coolest, because they do, so he buys those. for his army.

          But now they don’t get to play a fun game, because of how horrifically lopsided that match is. Timmy isn’t even spamming anything. He takes *a* wraithknight, and their games mostly just fall apart over it.

          This wasn’t Timmy’s fault. Timmy didn’t min-max. So when Timmy and Johnny complain, folks like you roll in to put all the blame on Timmy, tell Timmy he’s some sort of jerk for ‘power gaming’, trying to shame him into shutting up so that you don’t have to face the fact that you’ve spent a lot of money on a poorly built game from a company that doesn’t care.

        • Zingbaby

          Hah well false-emperor has already posted more in just this article/comments then you will likely post ever. — And he’s already quit the game too.

          • ChubToad

            Are you sure? He seems hellbent in convincing the internet community how bad everything is (including our comments).

    • Gorsameth

      Go play a game of Eldar vs Orks or Dark Eldar. Be sure to get how fair your game seemed with no amount of min/maxing involved.

      Tournament games will manage just fine. Everyone knows what they are getting into and you know people bring the broken things.
      Now go play a casual game and discover that little jimmy likes his Scatterlaser Bikes. Is he a filthy WAAC gamer or does he just like the look and feel of the model?

      You dont need to min-max to break 7th and that is a major problem for the game.

  • Sputnikwriter

    A bit of a tortured metaphor, but I agree with the general gist, even though I understand that is merely my opinion and not shared by everyone.

    • euansmith

      General Gist’s special rules have always been totally OP; especially his Tortured Metaphor one!

      • Commissar Molotov

        I prefer General Tso to General Gist.

        • Zingbaby

          He makes delicious chicken!

        • euansmith

          My army is always under the command of Major Short-Cummings…

          • Commissar Molotov

            That’s…Grievous!

          • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

            better him than Private Parts.

      • Sputnikwriter

        I feel there has been a major misunderstanding here…

  • This is an age old debate with truths on both sides of the equation.

    * – it is true that if you play the game in a way that doesn’t actively seek out to break the game, that the game can be fun. This is how I prefer to play the game. I spent nearly a decade breaking the game and it got boring to me because its not altogether that difficult to do.

    To players that fall in this camp – players that try to break the game crap all over the game in the name of winning and competition.

    * – players that like to min/max feel that if they are playing within the rules of the game that you play the game to win, and you will do all that you can to win as long as you are playing by the rules.
    Competition comes first, if the rules are shoddy and busted, thats not the player’s fault, thats the game’s fault an they will continue to bust the game because they cannot fathom why you wouldn’t try your best to win.

    ——————————-

    Now the thing is that neither side of this argument are wrong. This really comes into its own when the two sides try to mix and play against each other.

    • Malisteen

      The problem is that 40k balance is so wonk that you don’t even have to be trying half the time. Timmy the eldar player who got a wraith knight because its cool and Johnny the dark eldar player without even trying to break the game fall face first into uneven, unfun games entirely by accident.

      You don’t have to know all problems and actively exploit them in order to break it in 40k, but rather the opposite. You have to know all the problems and actively avoid them in order to avoid the places where it was pre-broken by the designers for you.

      It doesn’t take system mastery to make the game unfair, it takes system mastery to reign it in. New, casual players are the least likely to find fun, fair games of 40k.

      • I don’t disagree. New players picking up models can (and often do) break the game just because they think three wraith knights are cool (they are).

        • fabiobile

          Er Mah Gawd Emperor. A civil discussion

        • euansmith

          “No, I only play Grav Centurions because they are such cool figures… Why do you all keep laughing when I say that?!”

  • denzark

    To carry on your bottle metaphor… GW do test the bottle. They probably do a drop test. They probably do a test against the bottle being accidentally thrown. They may even test what happens if you hit your opponent around the head with a bottle. However, the problem is when your common or garden basement dweller finds a way to craft a proton accelerator, cross the streams and reduce the bottle to its constituent atoms. To translate the metaphor for those not getting me, I refer to the innate ability of the geek to forsee combos, interactions and rules loophole/exploitations – that break the game. The limited amount of playtesting GW does, does not foresee all potential problems – probably because if there is a question during testing, the studio will dice off for it…

    • false-emperor

      nice insults and shaming.
      The game is broken if you and your opponent choose your armies and units out of a hat at random, no amount of “foreseeing combos” needs to be done at all…

      • denzark

        Are you having a bad day princess, I will make you a cup of tea if you like?

      • Autumnlotus

        Many of the OP armies currently don’t need combos to be powerful. Necrons are considered that for their formations, but even without them the command barge and ghost arks can win them the game by default

    • Charon

      So you thing Eldar vs Dark Eldar is fair and square, tested a lot of times and deemed reasonable balanced unless someone actively “breaks the game”?.
      Let me tell you this: I have played around 10 games of DE vs Eldar to show my friend how “fun” this matchup is. It ended with all games lost for DE while I made a random generator pick my Eldar units for me AND gave a 300 Points advantage to DE.
      Perfectly fine.

      • biodon13

        I think perhaps the Dark Eldar player needs to rethink his battle plan, cause we’ve got a guy here who absolutely dominates with the DE…hard to beat even with the recent codex builds. He is a good player, and plays the DE to their strengths.

        And for the record, 10 games does not make the case for anything…you still barely know your army after 10 games.

        • Charon

          And let me guess, this is a maxed out DE army?

        • pad_uk

          Yeah, I’ve got a friend like that too. Wonder if it is the same guy?! LOL

      • denzark

        I don’t claim it is fair, I don’t claim it has been tested a lot of times. Hell I doubt it has been tested once – because as I stated, they do limited testing. If they did test what you refer to as DE vs E it probably was not with every possible iteration of allies/harlies/SH etc.

        • Charon

          You do not need to test any iteration of allies to see that this MU is broken from start.

    • Wildzero

      Your OPINION is “GW do test the bottle.” Mine is that GW DOES NOT test the bottle. Blank Stars, D strength Eldar, Wraithknights, Gravcents, Scatter laser jet bikes all support my opinion. What examples support yours princess?

      • denzark

        I’ve seen at least one picture in the new format weekly white dwarf where the caption states it was something in playtesting in the studio. I either take that as primary source evidence or I could go with the conspiracy theorist ‘GW neva playtest eva waaa the sky is falling’.

      • scadugenga

        Add hominems =/= valid arguments.

        Silly, I know.

    • Stormcaller

      This…

  • biodon13

    I think that the general message of this article is correct…in fact quite on point…I have played a great deal of casual 40k lately and I do not see the “auto win” match-ups that people are speaking of. I don’t see them because most of the people I play with buy their armies entirely based on their love of the models. No one is spamming ugly Eldar jet bikes because they are OP. No one is taking advantage of the battle companies free vehicles (mostly due to financials, but also because nobody wants to paint 10 razorbacks.

    In any case, I agree with the article that “the bottle is not broken until someone breaks it”. And the rules are not faulty by nature (yes, power creep is a real thing) but we have to break them. You all know someone (or yourself) that feels like they are not playing the game properly unless they are pushing the rules to their limit…and the choice to build your army that way and to see if you can make the rules broken is a choice to “break the bottle”…it is not a flaw in the rules, it is a flaw in the player.

    Actually it reminds me of the D&D player that cannot deal with honest rolling of beginning stats for a character and must cheat the rolls…after all what is a fighter without 18 strength, right? Or the Battletech player that must deconstruct his mech and mount PPCs everywhere they fit…after all, what is a mech without a particle cannon? AC/5s suck.

    I really like the 7th edition rules, and I really love the models available for most of the armies. Why break them and for certain, why blame the rules when you do.

    • Charon

      The Problem is you dont need to spam “ugly Eldar jetbikes” or paint up 10 razorbacks for a demi company. You just need to fight weaker armies.
      I does not matter what you are going to pick as Eldar if you pülay against Dark Eldar. You can randomize your army and you will still end up winning as everything in your codex is strictly cheaper and better in every aspect.
      Same goes for CSM vs SM. You have the same basic trooper for the same points but get 3 more special rules. You have basically the same dread for the same points but with double the amount af attacks. You have the same weapons and a few more powerful ones on top of that. You have the same transports but with split fire and self repair for the same points and a hand full more transport options on top of it.

      That makes playing SM vs CSM basically pretty one sided unless the SM player is an absoulte beginner.

    • euansmith

      Boromir of the Grey Plastic Marine Chapter (the Fightin’ WAAC Jobs), “One does not PAINT 10 Razorbacks!”

  • Anasa

    One-sided battles are boring in both casual and competitive play, and the imbalance between codexes drives for a lot of one-sided battles, even when no one is designing their lists fully for the purpose of winning. It’s especially annoying when both players are going for a fluffy, narrative mission, with army lists reflecting that, and it still turns into an unintentional curbstomp. Copy paste this situation for several more games, and it’s no wonder people start calling for better balance, or making house rules of their own.

    • Gorsameth

      Exactly, Tournament players know what they are getting into atleast.
      Its the casual players who keep losing and walk away from the hobby that costs GW the most customers.

      • Anasa

        Pretty much. I consider me and my friends as mainly narrative or casual players. We spend a LOT of effort towards creating terrain and writing scenarios and house rules, all for the sake of narrative. Judging by that, GW:s new trend is ideal for us, right? Not really. The inherent imbalance can create a situation where it’s the worst of both worlds: either you’re constantly getting disappointed because that cool, themed army you liked never accomplishes anything on the table, or you can’t help but feel bad for playing it because it’s too good.

        But hey, can’t complain too much. Don’t want to be a dirty WAAC, after all :D.

        • euansmith

          Have you tried “One Page 40k”? The rules are based of a set called FUBAR. They lack the baroque detail of GW’s ever evolving mutant, but then they aren’t designed to push figure sales. One Page 40k aims to supple fast play and more balance.

          https://onepagerules.wordpress.com/portfolio/one-page-40k/

    • ZeeLobby

      Totally agree. My friend is trying to run a Tyranid vs Imperium campaign, and he’s already had to handicap imperial forces to make the “invading” tyranids not just fail to invade in the first round.

      • Anasa

        Aye, that sounds familiar.

  • Chris Norvall

    So much of this can be applied to the current Age of Sigmar argument about balance an structure too. Its the players who are ruining the game not the creators.

    • Autumnlotus

      It’s the creators who made the problem rules though, it took the community less then a day to find the problems so obviously it’s not nitpicking/WAAC problems. Same with 40k: I want to start dark eldar, but the poor new book made GW not have any more of my money

  • benn grimm

    The rules aren’t broken, but this record you keep playing clearly is. seriously can you not think of anything else to write about? Oh and great analogy, really deep. Me, I use plastic bottles.

    • TumbleWeed

      Chilled pewter mugs for me! That way I’m more likely to damage the floor or wall if I chuck it… Wonder what that says about the balance of my mug?

      • euansmith

        A rusty tin can for me.

        • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

          I like to drink from the skulls of my enemies. Or failing that a Thomas the Tank Engine no-spill kiddy cup.

    • Stormcaller

      Will do Grimm; something different next week. And I only do plastic when I go to the stadium or summerfest…it’s all they have if I want to drink!

      • benn grimm

        Ah the joy of plastic cups in the summertime.) Glad to hear it.

        I remember you writing an article earlier this year about how you’d moved on from 40k. That still the case? If so, with the best of intentions I’d respectfully suggest you maybe move on from the 40k commentary/analysis for a bit; just give it a break, talk about something you play and enjoy playing, like Infinity or AOS or something maybe?

        • Stormcaller

          I have stepped out of the room, but not of the building. Selling off my Nids and putting together a Clan Raukaan/Admech army. So still reading dexes, listening to podcasts…keeping a pulse on the hobby. Frankly, I am responding to YOU specifically because I respect your level-headed commentary. Most of my off-topic posts go on my personal blog (Shadow of Prometheus). Slainthe!

          • benn grimm

            Fair play, I was in a similar situation not long ago and stepping back from regular gaming and just painting/modelling random stuff i liked, reading the occasional plog, definitely helped remind me why I enjoyed the hobby.

            I appreciate that, though i’m just as bad as the other eejits at times, i do try and stay civil. We are a relatively small community after all. Blog looks cool, i’ll be sure to keep tabs on the ad mech stuff. Slainte mhaith! 🙂

    • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

      I like to drink from the skulls of my enemies. Or failing that a Thomas the Tank Engine no-spill cup.

  • fabiobile

    uggh

    What GW has done is basically what a lot of the copycats of DayZ on Steam are doing these days. Create an open world with some assets, and saying to hell with it after that. This is especially the case with Age of Sigmar. I enjoy some sandbox games occasionally like Gmod, but I do like more structure in my games MOST of the time. I wouldn’t mind an off the wall mod for Napoleon: Total War, but I enjoy the game because of the structured mechanics in the game. Especially in multiplayer. The Battle of Waterloo wouldn’t be much fun if both sides could take as many units of Old Guard and Foot Guards as they wanted every single game.

  • MVBrandt

    Nobody ever intends to make really bad beer. When they do, and some folks keep drinking it out of loyalty while others go elsewhere because it’s bad, the company usually doesn’t respond by saying the dissatisfied customers were drinking it wrong.

    The attitude of blaming the consumers who stop consuming because they don’t like a product is crazy.

    Truth is, it’s like miller lite suddenly radically changing their recipe and people getting berated for missing the old standard.

    • Zingbaby

      Well I don’t think GW has ever “blamed consumers”. They created a game – we _decided_ to buy/play/participate.

      Further you can play the game many different ways, your OWN way, “competitive”, casual, narrative, whatever… but they only ‘support’ one style of play and it’s not “competitive”, never has been either.

  • GW broke it. Is that a serious question?

  • Chumbalaya

    It’s not just a river in Egypt, folks.

  • hywelphillips

    And around we go again…

    I think there’s two basic problems with balance in 40K.

    1) The game universe is wide and diverse, and the GW rules team have tried to reflect that diversity with radically different special rules for different units and armies. This means the game is very complex, with a huge number of different combinations.

    2) Balance all boils down to points, and points are very hard to calculate correctly. In my opinion, that’s because the diversity means that the effective points value of a unit differs wildly depending on the situation.

    It is possible to field a legal army which is entirely unable to hurt another legal fielded army. In that situation, points are clearly incapable of doing the job of game balance. Your troops may only cost 5 per figure, but if they can’t scratch the opponent, it doesn’t matter how many of them you have on the table.

    The points value can at best be true only in aggregate, against some “expected average” meta with a mix of toughnesses, weapon strength, vehicles, AP, invulnerable saves and so on. Find yourself a corner of the meta which radically departs from that average and you can have an army which is either all-conquering, or omni-defeated, because the points value weren’t designed to cope with the fact that you’re bringing an anti-infantry list to fight mechanized leaf-blower gun-line or whatever today’s killer army everyone is playing is.

    That’s not to say that GW have done a good job with this; they clearly haven’t. Codex creep certainly exists. GW also fail to realise that tournament players are professionally good and seeking out those corners of army configuration phase space where you get implausibly high results for a given points cost- just so long as you don’t meet that army’s hard counter, assuming there is one.

    But for me part of the appeal of 40K is that different armies and different units genuinely do different things. While that remains the case, I think coming up with a genuinely balanced points system is impossible. If it were easy, all these armchair experts (and tournament organisers, for that matter) would have produced the one true correct re-balanced set of points costs, and we wouldn’t be having these discussions.

    I think the imbalance is inherent in the diversity of rules and units of 40K, but I also think that diversity is part of the reason why 40K is more fun (for me) than say chess.

    • Havik110

      there are people called mathematicians…they can do stuff like calculate the size of the universe or the speed of light…they sure as hell can come up with a points system that would balance a game of little plastic army men…GW doesnt care to balance it, they want you to buy the newest models regardless of how good or bad they are…

      • hywelphillips

        The problem is that the solution you are looking for is not unique. Sure, you could calculate a points value based on the average meta today. But tomorrow, when fashions change or a new codex is released, that meta will change. Even disregarding codex creep, if people suddenly start fielding more MSU’s and transports, stuff like melta and plasma becomes more valuable than it was six months ago when everyone had foot-based troops.

        The points values would have to be recalculated on a daily basis to reflect the meta of the community you play against.

        We do in fact know of a way of doing that- a free market. The best way to do it would be for the community to run something like a free market to decide on the points value each unit should have, given the current state of the world meta. But organising this would be a) tricky and b) more trouble than a game of toy soldiers is worth.

        (P.S. I’m a particle physicist rather than a mathematician, but I think my reasoning is sound).

        • Zingbaby

          Good points – If I decide to field my all dreadnought list – can you “balance” it against Eldar?

          • hywelphillips

            No… I don’t have enough data to go on, and I doubt many other people do either (including GW). Really, the only way to do it would be to try a few battles and see- ideally swapping sides and replaying with same forces and set-up a few times too.

            The points will need a bit of a tweak one way or another whenever you start setting up specific examples. That’s the issue I have with one point value for all conditions.

            This is a very specific set of conditions, an all-dreadnought list is not representative of a typical army. I’m sure you could design an Eldar army that would suck against it, and an Eldar army that would annihilate it.

            Are the points for those armies “wrong”?

            Yes, in this situation, and in every other specific situation too. The best they can be is right broadly, on average, over a wide variety of armies and meta and scenarios and terrain and total game sizes and all other variables.

            As I’ve said before I don’t think GW have done a good job on points. But I don’t think ANYONE can construct a perfect points system that achieves perfect balance in every battle between every sort of army.

        • euansmith

          Alternatively, the rules could be entirely over hauled to create forces that are more balanced, maybe with a series of USRs that are applied consistently across all forces. GW do seem to have become entangled in a net of their own creating, where every Codex is required to have some new and novel special rule.

          Partly, I feel, this must be down to GW wanting to sell the codices. If they were really interested in only selling models, they could have a more streamlined rules set and rely on cool minis and fluff to sell new releases.

          • denzark

            Or, they could carry on doing what they’re doing because profits haven’t dropped to the point where they have been convinced what they are doing is wrong…

          • mE

            …yet.

          • hywelphillips

            Yes, absolutely. The problem is present in all games with a large number of variables in the set-up of the meta, but GW surely do seem bent on making the situation worse with every new special killer rule and super-duper D weapon Lord of War formation whatsit.

            It wouldn’t fix the problem totally- you’d still have to deal with changing fashion meaning that the points you balanced against have shifted against the meta of what people are actually bringing to the table. For instance if everyone decides that kill point missions are much more fun than objective based missions and start playing many more games of kill point, all the points immediately become out of whack.

            But they could damp down some of these wilder oscillations and mad swings to invisible death stars and re-rolling 2+ invulnerable saves by being a bit more damn sensible about new breaks-all-the-existing-rules stuff they add to each new codex.

          • Michael Gerardi

            Good points. Maybe the key realization is that there isn’t ONE point system that works for all situations.

            Maybe different point systems for different missions would help. More work? Yep. So what.

        • Havik110

          I’m thinking on the cost of BS and WS based on the unit type. BS means more to a DE warrior than WS does. at the same time WS means more to a wych than BS does. there are people much smarter than me (based on your profession or field of study you would be one of them) that could make it work. then you have the basic eye test, if it doesn’t look right it probably isnt.

          what is worth more a de warrior who wounds on a 4 except for a gargantuan or an eldar guardian who auto wounds anything without an invuln on a 6? one has 12 inch range vs a 24 inch range but this is where the mathematicians will come in. the range on the basic gun needs to be taken into account on the points cost.

          what should cost more, a mutilator or an assault centurion?

          what should the costs be for DE bikes vs CW bikes?

          How the hell does the company that wants to sell models point the DE bomber the cost it points it at?

          you also need to take into account force multipliers but i think that just means force multipliers go up in cost

          Im not worried about meta. Make a formula, and stick to it…range, strength, ap, added effects that makes this gun cost x…that gets added to unit y…even if it wasnt perfect it would be better than just pulling #s out of your but like they do now…

      • Nic Hughes

        Any sensible mathematician would tell you that every time you double the size and complexity of the game you increase the difficulty of balancing it by 4 times. 10 times the complexity means 100 times the effort in balancing it. Balancing needs data, the amount of data you need does not grow linearly with extra models and rules, it is a geometric progression that quickly gets out of hand.

        There comes a point where with any sort of finite resource in people or time you must choose between variety or balance. GW chose variety and are totally honest about that decision. Chess has no variety and in a tournament setting is absolutely balanced. Anyone with a genuine desire for a balanced game of skill who then chooses 40K over chess has worse problems than anything in any rule book.

    • hywelphillips

      I should add that other “balancing” methods are fun to do but even harder to be precise with than points.

      Some armies are better on planet bowling ball (long range gun line) whereas others are best in very densely packed ruins (genestealer hordes). So your points really ought to depend on the table configuration.

      The scenario can favour one army or another, too. What works for kill points doesn’t necessary work so well for seizing artifacts or rescuing techmarines. So again the “official” points values have to take into account what they believe the community-wide meta for amount of terrain and which mission types are, too.

      There just isn’t one perfect set of points to balance them all. (Although again GW haven’t exactly done the best job it would be possible to do in my opinion).

  • oldgrue

    Why attribute malice when shortsightedness will do just fine.
    The “bottle wasn’t broken” is shifting the blame to the people playing the game. Perhaps its siloed development. Maybe there’s limited coordination between products. None of this is the fault of the consumer.

    By way of beer analogy – blaming the drinker for a brewer deciding on randomly selecting hops, grain, yeast, and recipe is a poor business decision. Each element is a conscious decision even for large batches. Tasting rooms and coordinated development/playtesting have the same purpose – to see if the product appeals to other people.

    If there is feedback that takes to the same points then taking that feedback into consideration isn’t unwise. Budweiser took to mocking the people who wanted more in a beer and cost themselves and Miller/Coors market share for it.

  • kaptinscuzgob

    today on BOLS finds a new metaphor and runs it into the ground…

    • euansmith

      It was unbeerable…

      • TumbleWeed

        You’re punbelievable eaunsmith…

      • NovaeVox

        On the contrary, I thought it was a stout argument.

        • Unferth

          Still it is a pintless discussion.

          • euansmith

            Don’t be bitter, I though it was quite mild, it is just that I have got a lager than life personality, and anyone who disagrees with me can just pils off!

      • kaptinscuzgob

        at least the bottle was a pretty well written bottle

        bottle bottle bottle broken bottle

    • Michael Gerardi

      Yeah, now BoLS is a bottlefield.

  • Jason

    Good article. I totally agree. I’m playing with a great group right now and we’re all loving the game and having a blast. But we’ve learned to avoid the “bottle throwers” – those guys don’t get invited anymore or in other situations can’t get any of us to play them and so they’ve moved on.

  • euansmith

    I guess one solution, if only the rules played faster, would be to play each game twice, with players swapping armies for the second leg. Victory would go to whoever scored the most convincing victory in both games.

    • denzark

      This is only necessary if the outcome of the game is more important than the game itself… Sounds like tournament stuff… 40k ain’t a tournament game…

      • Michael Gerardi

        Your opinion. Clearly, many others differ.

        • denzark

          So, as you seem to be arguing to the opposite of what I stated, you seem to think it is necessary irrespective of the outcome of the game. But if the outcome is irrelevant what does balance matter? If balance doesn’t matter, why do you need to reverse armies?

          • Michael Gerardi

            You’re missing my point. Your statement that “40K ain’t a tournament game” is what is your opinion. Others differ. I say it is both.

          • denzark

            Let me be clearer – 40K MAY be played by a considerable body
            of people in ‘tournaments’. But this
            doesn’t make it a ‘tournament game’ by which I mean designed and optimised for
            tournament play. Most credible TOs feel
            the need to play around with the rules.

            There are loads of examples (of which I can’t be arsed to
            reference) to imply or even specify that GW does not consider its creation a
            tournament game nor even cares much about tournaments. Do you know how GW decides winners at its own
            Throne of Skulls ‘tournament’ at Warhammer World? Entirely on favourite game votes – results do
            not figure at all. Unbound is allowed.

            Now compare that to most other tournaments that are
            publicised on BoLS.

    • Commissar Molotov

      We used to do that regularly during 2nd-3rd Ed., just to try out new armies and tactics. Really teaches you about your own army when you have to face it across the table!

    • Vomkrieg

      The two card games I play do that, Star Wars and Netrunner. Play as Corporation, then as runner or play as Dark side and then light.

      While it doesn’t really work for minigames, the idea of playing attack/defence scenarios and swapping over sounds like a cool idea.

  • NagaBaboon

    So true, even the most well balanced of games suffer from this, unfortunately where it hurts the rest of us is when one of your friends reads the tourney winning list online and decides to play it rather than trying to find the combinations themselves, suddenly everyone, other than those who refuse to play anything but there own brainchildren, is playing fat han/wraithknight spam/pick your game and insert deathstar.

    I personally think 40K is a particularly poorly balanced game in the first place but not because there are necessarily more loopholes than other games (there are but that’s not the worst bit), it’s that the loopholes that exist are so massive. At least most other companies attempt to respond in a reasonable way to these issues, like fighting a forest fire you could argue it’s just a losing battle, and that seems to be GWs response, but without even trying you don’t stand a chance of keeping it under control.

  • David Metcalfe

    Play 1500pts and Maelstrom, these 2 alone should bring most armies into line against most opponents

  • euansmith

    Photo #3, that man is holding that broken bottle like a rank amateur! He is obviously never going to win a bar fight.

  • Commissar Molotov

    Dammit. Now it’s 10AM EST and I want to drink beer.

  • TumbleWeed

    It’s like a game of chess, except where the white team can field more pieces or their pieces have better movement options from the start. Don’t need a single game of playtesting to see the problem there. But people sure would swarm to the chess-workshop to get the white pieces, and then when they calm down chess-workshop will change it so the black pieces can shoot projectiles and blast templates at the white pieces…

    I think I’m losing the metaphor but you see my point.

    • euansmith

      Only the “Chess” is “Beer”, right?

    • Zingbaby

      Except it’s never been a game of chess – we try to make it into one, with “all-comers” lists and tournament style play …but really 40K has never worked well in that capacity… it’s a much better narrative game.

      • TumbleWeed

        True, but when trooper A costs the same as trooper B points-wise, and trooper B can run farther or shoot better or live longer, something is obviously wrong with the point system. If GW can’t even see and fix a basic problem like this it’s no wonder they’re ditching the system for AoS. And doing things like “buy these certain models x10 and get them in your army FOR FREE WEEEEEEEEE!” They aren’t even pretending to try, and that’s a little insulting to many of their players.

        • Zingbaby

          Yeah I hear you dude – there is obviously something wrong with the point system, and codex Eldar for example is just too good for the points – but this ‘issue’ is much more a problem in ‘tournament style’ play than it is in narrative style play (which 40K has pretty much always been a fun medium for).

          For us, it’s the game that matters, not just the outcome; and I get it – when your stuff is being blown off the board during the game that’s not fun either…

          What I’d like to know though is; why suddenly now are folks expecting it to be “balanced” to a tournament standard when it’s never been this way before?

          • TumbleWeed

            I get what you’re saying too, never been a tournament player myself. And WAAC players make me sigh and shake my head. But my frustration towards GW is their obvious treatment of the rules as a marketing strategy for their game. It seems pretty heartless. And not all of us have a group of friends ready or the extra time to work around the system to make entertaining narrative campaigns. So I really never play, just collect and paint.

          • Zingbaby

            Yeah well that is tough – just finding time I know is difficult for us – but it’s easier than ever to find other folks to play with at least.

            And really it doesn’t have to be a drawn out narrative campaign, even one-off narrative type games are pretty fun.

            As for the marketing strategy treatment of rules etc… having played since RT I think my expectations are reasonable – meaning low haha – but does that matter if we pretty much always have fun?

  • Defenestratus

    The problem isn’t with tournament players breaking their bottles at tournaments, its when they decide to go into casual environments and say “look how cool breaking bottles is!”

    And some poor impressionable new people to the hobby start getting the brilliant idea that cuttthroat 40k is just the way its done.

    The tournament stupidity spilling over into casual play is where I’ve got my issue with this whole thing.

    • Charon

      If you play a casual game of Eldar vs Dark Eldar you are still breaking the game just because Eldar do exist.

  • Unferth

    Why would you think GW gives a damn about balance? Have you ever seen the “armies” suggested in the core rulebook? Dev squad with Lascannon, Heavy Bolter, Missile Launcher and a Multi Melta ..they obviously adress tournament gamers from the very start.

  • WellSpokenMan

    Another “you are ruining the game by playing your way and not my way rant.” For all that the community makes tournament players out to be the dregs of society, I find it ironic that the ones that consistently act like jerks online are generally the “let’s just have fun” crowd.

    • Depends on what side of the aisle you stand on. Much like politics, its often conceived that the other side are the irrational ones that just like to be jerks, but we often turn a blind eye to our own side when they themselves are that way.

      I find both sides equally do this every day on internet forums.

      • WellSpokenMan

        That’s what I used to think. I don’t play tournaments or anything kind of organized competitive play, but most of the really nasty stuff seems to be coming primarily from one side lately. Personally, I think this kind of stuff is just bullying somebody for having an opinion you don’t like or playing a way you don’t like. It doesn’t matter which side is doing it. I find it disgusting and juvenile.

        • I just read a comment about 10 minutes ago on a facebook page where someone was saying that people that complain about tournament players are just whiny babies that don’t know how to play properly.

          You’re right, it is bad form regardless of who is saying what.

    • crusader284

      It goes both ways. If 40k was tournament-focused and the “let’s just have fun” crowd complained about it, I can guarantee a lot of the competitive crowd would be coming out with their own insults.

      • WellSpokenMan

        To an extent I agree, but I think the hate towards competitive players has gotten more common and vitriolic in the last 6 months or so. It is possible that I am just noticing it more due to the perceived irony.

        • crusader284

          Oh don’t get me wrong I’ve noticed it too. I’m just saying that both sides are responsible for this. It’s pretty annoying how each side is always looking to dictate on how others play with their plastic men.

  • Grand_Master_Raziel

    To continue the bottle metaphor, we would like our cold refreshing beverages to come in sturdy bottles that can stand up to actual wear and tear and maybe even some abuse. GW is giving us our beverage in a bottle made of eggshell china so thin, it’ll break if we grip it too firmly.

    The fact that balancing a game as complex as 40K would be difficult does not absolve GW of making a good-faith effort to try, especially considering how much they charge for rules. If they release the rules for free, then maybe we can cut them some slack on the quality. However, if they have the nerve to charge $85 USD for the core rules and $58 for a codex, then the rules should be a first-rate product, and they are anything but by anyone’s estimation.

  • Luca Battisti

    I like to throw bottles. Am I allowed to or am I forced to play like you want me to?
    When I play a game of bottle throwing may I have bottles that do not break please?
    Why do you keep ranting about what people do with their games?
    Personally I want a mostly balanced and very cearly written ruleset which offers interesting combos and even games.
    In my eyes:
    -Every possibility to break the bottle is a failure.
    -Every article about a rule conundrum is a failure.
    -Every time a list has less than 60% the probability to beat another one before the start of the game is a failure.

    That said I love 7th edition. I despise the balance between codices (referred to as “external balance” of the books). But that’s the problem, the balance. Not the game. The balance is broken. And guess what? I never got to touch that. I seriously doubt that I could break it even if I wanted.

  • GaryT

    Like with a lot of things, people are more prone to complain about something than sing its praises. The motivation is not as high to go out of your way to say how good something is compared to slating it. For me personally, I love how 40k is. A lot of players deem it to be very broken and find it frustrating. I accept it is far from perfect, but I enjoy it nonetheless.

  • TweetleBeetle

    The game is no more imbalanced or broken than Warmachine (40+% of tournament fields are still Cryx), and certainly less broken than Malifaux.

    More successfully selling factions than any other system means more play styles. More play styles means more unit types, planes of combat, and therefore, variance. That said, you’re lucky to find two repeat lists in a top 16 of a major tournament these days. Every army has some juice, and since the codex trend resembling Necrons will continue, every army will have more options than ever before. Playable options at that.

    Players usually break rules interactions, and are then the first to complain when they face another one. Players who are annoying like this are often no fun to play against, and don’t have fun themselves unless they’re winning on easy mode. The game itself is better than it’s ever been.

    Sigmar is GW’s entry level, simplified skirmish game (which is also selling like crazy right now). 40k is their complex, next-level game. They will continue to remain different that way, despite the anti-GW, former-mongers-who-now-know-nothing claim, based on guesswork, is going to happen.

    • Charon

      “since the codex trend resembling Necrons will continue”

      Source?

    • Shiwan8

      What are these “more palyable options than ever”? 😀

  • ZeeLobby

    My issue is not with GW’s lack of balancing. It’s their lack of fixing rules that are just plain broken… Tzeentch daemon bonus comes to mind right off my head, but codecies are literally saturated with broken/incorrect rules that would require a simple FAQing to fix… That would go a long way to simply creating a base-point for balance.

    And to say GW can’t balance it anymore than it has is just idiotic. Change invisibility from 6s to hit to just shrouded and boom, there goes half the cheese available in the game. They’re just lazy…

    I might have to leave BoLS soon, the overwhelming support of a company that only cares about the green in your wallet is too much. There’s a reason many of the good game designers left GW for greener pastures…

  • ChubToad

    There’s one way to utterly balance the game. Play the same army and the same list. End of discussions, internet flame wars and comments section. The world is a better place now.

    • Charon

      Someone has to take the first turn…

      • ChubToad

        But that’s lack of balance. Comp that too!

  • ClownBabyROK

    Oh this is a great troll article. popcorn.gif

  • Agree on all fronts save the tournament part. They wanna square peg the round hole let em, they paid and are willing to put the work in. Shouldnt whine aboot it tho, man up and move on.

  • Gridloc

    Imagine a show with horrible acting, cheesy plots, and endless commercials. Now imagine people defending it by saying its the viewers fault… This feels like that.

    • Zingbaby

      Imagine it has a cult following like a lot of cheesy, horrible movies – Conan the Barbarian for example. Does it really need to be “defended”?

      Can’t people just like it and not have some other guy constantly interrupting the movie talking about how this scene and that scene could have been done better?

      This feels like that.

      • Gridloc

        I never said those defending can’t like it, actually i love a lot of ‘cheesy’ movies. Even doing cheese pizza, mozzarella sticks, and cheese cake nights for fun cheesy movie night with friends.

        You missed the point though, they aren’t ‘cheesy’ because i watch them, they are cheesy because the quality of the product. Blaming the viewers is dumb, just like saying that a poorly built game is the gamers fault. Never once did i say it wasn’t enjoyable or bad game, just that its hardly our faults.

        • Zingbaby

          Here is the point – GW is not “blaming the viewers [customers]” and that entire notion is so incredibly ridiculous; they are literally not doing that. – People here act like they are such ‘oppressed victims’ because of evil GW and frankly it’s disturbing. This is a voluntary game, that you _chose_ to buy/play/participate in, likely knowing full-well what it’s all about (imbalance and all).

          It’s never been perfect, but thankfully you are free and able to play this game however you want with whatever changes/fixes/etc YOU feel are necessary – that is NOT “blaming” you.

          • Gridloc

            Zing, I realize that no matter what anyone says you will white knight GW to your grave. I get it man, you love the company and every game they make is golden. But read the article, it is saying its the players fault. Not GW saying it, but the author, so where as I realize you feel your noble company may sounds like its attacked, your fighting illusionary fights there bro.

            Also you are the only one using the word victims here. I never said that… lol you want to put words in my mouth thats fine, but lets try to clear something up. The article states its us breaking the bottle, not GW. As a fanboy I can see why anything other than sheer agreement might be hard to concept, but its not. Some of us brought the game when the power creep wasn’t a massive hole in enjoying the game, GW changed the codex and now we no longer have the same game. Please don’t give me long winded garbage about playing X edition, thats just cope out. Many of us play this game for more than just me and buddy in garage, some play to interact with all kinds of people, playing old editions that way isn’t possible with out more effort than it needs to be (see didn’t say impossible), we play because its a hobby. I picked up this hobby to paint models and throw down some dice with friends in a game of strategy. Not a hobby of massive organizational skills, convincing opponents not to play x model or use x rule sets, spending tons of time looking for rulings or justifications for rules that are poorly written.

            If thats your thing fine, if you see this as an attack then ignore it like usual and praise GW while curse the gamers. The hobby has grown, and those gamers you keep blaming are leaving so win for you, but lose for GW in the end. 🙂

          • Zingbaby

            Hah wow – well first, the word “victim” has literally already been used in this comments section.

            And whether you are talking about GW or this blog author this “blaming” notion is simply a sad way to interpret what he is saying. We have laws (and rulebooks) telling us not steal or commit murder but do we really need someone (some set of rules) to tell us not to act like an A-hole? …cuz at least in the US you can legally be a huge A-hole, but just because it’s legal doesn’t mean you are not one. That’s not “blaming” you, that’s just saying that the choice is yours.

            I’ve enjoyed GW games since the 80’s and I have a reasonable (even if low) expectation of what they produce. I’m lucky now to have a great group so no matter how f-d up 40K might be, we always enjoy it. Further I think some folks decade+ long tirade about how terrible GW is insane. Move on already. If that makes me a “white night for GW” then fine.

            If you leave because you think I’m “blaming” you hah well that’s on you.

          • Gridloc

            It has been used, but not by me, as I agree we are not victims. We were not forced, but we did get a the rope a dope with new codex creep, still not victims though. So not sure why it came up, i simply pointed out that we are not the fault.

            Also, its this left side/right side issue that has been created with causal vs WAAC, when truth is that its a very blurry line. I think one side calling the other A-holes because their idea of fun differs is wrong, i would never sit there and make fun of fluff players or casual because i enjoy competitive games. That would be shallow, i may not agree, but my opinion is not law.

            I’m happy you have a solid gaming group, its one of the great aspects of this game. I enjoy my local FLGS for games as in the states its more the ‘go to’ place. So because of that the range of players greatly varies. As such when 6th dropped it changed alot of the style of the game i enjoyed (more random) so i left. But not playing does not mean not caring, I still have thousands of dollars in models, still love the fluff, and hope that one day either a massive change in the rules to bring me back. Be it GW or someone buying them, as such I still follow 40k news. I have moved on, but when i read it was my fault, i would like to get a word in why it isn’t.

          • Zingbaby

            All pretty fair points – though, I still don’t think you are being blamed, or that it’s being said that you are at “fault” for issues some perceive with 40K.

            Most folks don’t build “WAAC” lists (wraithknight spam for example) by accident. They know perfectly well that their list is likely going to make their opponent have a terrible time. I realize in some context that is encouraged – but to me that person is — not a nice person. Is it his “fault” that wraithspam is ‘legal’? — Nope, but he did make the choice knowing what it meant; and there have always been ‘legal’ builds in 40K that are simply un-fun for opponents. The choice has ALWAYS been yours – that is 40K.

            To your earlier point – the game is indeed more complicated than it’s been at other points and that means a steeper commitment for everyone; which can certainly be bad. I get where you are coming from, while I like the variation and the freedom I also wish it was just ‘easier’.

  • psycojester

    I tried to drink from the bottle and it shattered in my mouth clearly my own fault. Most other companies design their bottles not to shatter and fill your throat with broken glass. But it’s much easier to blame the person drinking the beer when the bottle breaks.

  • dodicula

    Blame the victim, I love it. Btw Mantic’s warpath 2.0 alpha rules are excellent, fun and balanced.

    • Zingbaby

      Someone who voluntarily purchases plastic toys, because he can and has made the personal CHOICE to do so – is not a ‘victim’.

    • Mikey_V

      This isn’t a crime and the gamers are not victims. It’s actually a little audacious that you would even draw that parallel.

  • Mikey_V

    The whole intent behind this article seems entirely lost on people. Balance and fairness is relative to the community in which you play in. Gw merely gives us a template to use. It’s up to us to decide how to employ it. You expect fairness? Keep in mind this is a war themed game! Now of course I get that this is still a game and everybody wants a fair shot at winning. Hence the social contact aspect mentioned. I applaud the authors of these articles for their insighy and intent behind said articles. I also encourage the continued writing of similar articles. However, the people who replied with, “well my army can’t do this” or “try fighting against this” etc just can’t comprehend the style of thinking that casual, fluffy and narrative gamers have.

    • Rafael Fernandez

      Completely agree. The GW designers, I imagine, intend the game to be played by people who are mindful of the spirit of fair play and want a loophole-exploiting-free game.

    • Zingbaby

      For the most part though, “gentleman’s agreements” don’t exist in the US. We (or our parents) spend money so we deserve to win.

  • ted1138

    Maybe it wouldn’t be broken if GW closed all the loop holes as soon as they’re opened. It’s human nature to try and find exploits in the rules, but when those exploits become public knowledge, surely it’s GW’s responsibility to fix them. I quit playing 40k because of rules abusers, and that has cost GW thousands of pounds in lost model and book sales.

  • Squeeker

    GW write rules and codesx to sell models end of. There is no balance at all. Tournement organisers can attemp to balance by using the codex only, not Forge world, Allies, Data slates and formations. Not the perfect solution but would address a lot of the issues.

    • Shiwan8

      At the moment, “codex only” is the best way to break the game. Forge has nothing compared to new eldar and even marines are better as is.

  • Andrew Thomas

    TL;DR; DBC

  • AKOF

    There’s broken glass IN the bottle, so drink at your own risk.

    • fabiobile

      Well call it Bud Light: Silver Ice

  • Michael Godfrey

    they didnt even bother bringing a bottle to break when they made eldar.

  • To paraphrase:

    “No! 40k is still awesome! It’s not GW’s fault – it’s ours! We thought it would be a game! We thought they would promote tourneys and engage the community and that was clearly a fault on our part! We shouldn’t expect anything from our corporate overlords, as the models and rulesets we get are the ones we lowly consumers deserve!”

    More and more of this kind of crap on BoLs.

    40k is losing it’s relevancy and fanbase. Deal with it.

  • John Felger

    The author is full of it. This is yet another odd scapegoating of the fans rather than holding the company producing defective product accountable. This is like complaining to the Car Lot that the vehicle you bought has problems remaining started in third gear (it stalls out) only to receive the retort, then drive it in second or fourth. Don’t bother with third. It isn’t our problem. It is yours. When one pays an high price for a set of rules, one expects them to work in all basic functions, just as one expects the car to to remain running in third gear.

    • Michael Gerardi

      Well said.

      GW had bloody well better start accepting the fact that a LARGE segment of its customer base is fed up with the insults and the disrespect. If they think they can customize their customer base like they can build an army list, they will find out otherwise, to their cost.

  • Michael Gerardi

    And ANOTHER self-righteous anti-tournament screed. Please. This argument stinks like a day-old diaper.

    When are you GW cheerleaders going to get it through your heads that you are NOT morally superior to other gamers, and that “casual” and “tournament” play are BOTH valid ways of playing and ENJOYING the game??? And I say that as someone who hasn’t played tournaments since 2006, never used a netlist when I did play tournaments, and will only play 40K in pre-6th Oldhammer form.

    And yes, GW most certainly WOULD create broken rules in order to push the latest plastic crack. As anyone with half an eye open figured out years ago.

    We’re not “cynical”. You’re naïve. At best.

    • Zingbaby

      BOTH are indeed valid ways to play 40K. GW has made the rules flexible enough that you CAN play it any way you like; however they have always explicitly supported one style of play and it’s never been “competitive”.

      You can play 40K “competitive” all you want; but you cannot expect GW to cater to YOUR idea of how the game should be played. You _chose_ to participate in this game knowing what it is.

      Further if you only play per-6th Oldhammer how do you even know what the game is currently like except for internet-freakouts?

      • Michael Gerardi

        MY idea of how the game should be played is precisely pre-6th Oldhammer. And more specifically, pre-Ward GK, pre-6th Oldhammer.

        How do I know what the game is currently like? By reading GW products. AND by reading the community reaction thereto.

        And to repeat the obvious (and always denied by pro-GW deniers): GW DID support tournament play. They certainly profited by it. As my half-dozen or so GT t-shirts attest. Fact. They can’t rewrite history.

        • Zingbaby

          And if that’s YOUR idea of how 40K should be played – you’re in luck – you can still do that!

          As for just reading books and reading user comments – that in NO way comes even remotely close to having any real understanding of how the game plays.

          Finally, nobody denies that GW was involved in tournaments at a few points in their history – but 40K still never was a good tournament system (even your pre-Ward version that might work for your group).

          You live in a time where you are free to play your plastic toys however you want – but it’s still ridiculous to expect GW to cater to YOUR specific style of play – and I don’t even mean you personally, but generally the folks that think GW should meet ‘their’ specific wants.

          • Michael Gerardi

            Look: the defects, flaws and flat-out idiocies of 6th (and 7th) were done to death when they were first published. I don’t need to rehash all the reasons why I agree that both products are unplayable TO ME. I don’t NEED to play them to realize that I think both are replete with features I don’t like and refuse to play, including: Challenges; Allies; Magic Phase; RANDOMNESS; etc. And the most overworked, bogus term ever: “cinematicity”. That’s ALL I NEED to “understand” how the game plays.

            And you should have no problem with that, because, as you say, I’m free to play my plastic toys however I want. Even if GW actively does everything it can to make that difficult, if not impossible as a practical matter.

          • Zingbaby

            Mike I have zero issue with you playing “Oldhammer” and it’s nice that you found a system that works for you. However, when you make judgements on the system that you’ve never tried, that is the very definition of ignorance.

            Further, if you’re happy with your current 40K position why bother spewing negativity here?

          • Shiwan8

            All I want is balance that is good enough to make things that now are unplayable actually options that can be taken. Things like warp talons, genestealers, ogryns, vespid and so on.

  • 40kgamer

    40k went from SNAFU to FUBAR with the change from 5th to 6th/7th. The game IS currently broken and players don’t have to do a single thing to accomplish this.

  • Psychopomp

    “Do you honestly think that the guys at GW put together a 208 page tome intending it to be a failure? … Did they meet in secret cabals for months talking about how to screw over the community?”

    I don’t think these things. I see no reason to ascribe to malice what simple incompetence and apathy can explain.

    Games Workshop broke the bottle because they accidentally dropped it. They no longer have the people of the talent that created its franchises nor the interest at the leadership level in creating quality game experiences that made them what they were. All the people and qualities that made Games Workshop great are now found amongst their competitors – forming a host of small game companies and independent creators making game experiences so very, very much more fun and enjoyable than modern 40K or AoS.

    So, feel free to continue pretending that this 30+ year old skirmish ruleset makes for a fun mass battle game. I really, honestly hope you find enjoyment in it – especially given the amount of extra effort and money it will require to do so. But just also understand that many people recognize the Games Workshop “empire” for the hot mess that it is nowadays, and are having gobs of fun with far less effort or expenditure.

    Outside the Games Workshop bubble, it is a new golden age of wargaming that just gets more and more fun each month. Honestly, the only interesting thing about Games Workshop for me these days is watching how they cope with their own slow, teetering decline.

    • Shiwan8

      The problem with the competition is just that while their rules might be better, the fluff is bad. There is no immersion to speak off when everything happening in the game universe seems like a weak bedtime story.

  • Corey Bailey

    Casual gamers blame tournie gamers. Tournie gamers blame GW. The problem is that noone ever blames or even mentions the actual guilty party!!!. Most tournie gamers didn’t start playing the game by trying to break every codex they could, but they had to, that was the environment in which they found themselves. Theyre just trying to enjoy the game competitively but have to bring the biggest gun or else whats the point? So who is to blame? T.O’s, T.O’s,T.O’s,T.O’s,T.O’s, If they would have put their foot down on this crap years ago then noone would have to deal with these crazy cheese lists. Not even tournie players. Whatever happened to tournament rules? GW used to not allow named characters in their tournies. Obviously they new that named characters were meant for fun and didnt belong in competitive play. Why are T.O’s getting away with murder right now and having all the rage directed at GW. Thats all Im saying. Blame the right person.

    • Shiwan8

      You just wrote instant win for eldar and marine players. Good job!

  • Nic Hughes

    Is 40K broken? There are too many people enjoying it in too many ways for that to really be true. Some of this does come from the much more reasonable idea that the gaming experience could be better. Comps at tournaments? If that is about changing the overall experience to be one that is more like what most people want then why not?

    What does the average tournament goer really want. As the most casual and occasional tournament player I want
    Varied games against different stuff to what I normally see
    Fun opponents
    Good looking armies on the table adding to the fluff experience
    ..and to throw down hard

    Now not all of those things are totally compatible but if you have a scoring system that balances them then I can decide if I want my list to be unique and tell a great story or if instead I want to go rock-hard with all the nastiest combos out there. Either way I get to score points. Making those all legitimate choices that *might* win me the tournament will create variety and encourage the positive fun attitude. I am on-board with the basic idea that this would probably make for a better total experience than focusing the main rewards on battle-points.

    In my professional life one of the truest sayings is that you get what you measure – what it means is that the measure of performance you choose will alter the behavior of the people measured. The same is true for tournaments, you will get what you award points for. If you award points for great hobby, great fluff and great attitude in equal measure to great play then that is pretty much what you will get.

    • Vomkrieg

      ” I wantVaried games against different stuff to what I normally see
      Fun opponents
      Good looking armies on the table adding to the fluff experience
      ..and to throw down hard”

      Sounds perfect to me and I’ve never played in a 40k tournament. But that sounds like a good day.

  • Painjunky

    GW did not make a broken bottle.
    They made a bottle of razor thin, poor quality glass that shatters when even the slightest amount of pressure is applied.

  • Vomkrieg

    The late great Roddy Piper shows you how to really break a bottle.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uzvNPq_5P2g

    • euansmith

      I’m still not gonna put them damn sunglasses on!

      • Vomkrieg

        Best fight scene ever.

        There’s a great homage to that in Saints Row IV.

        • euansmith

          Ah, Saints Row; GTA’s ugly, stupid brother… who is such great fun to goof off with. 😉

          • Vomkrieg

            Saints row IV has so very little to do with GTA though, Saints row 1 was a GTA knock off but SR4 is somethign quite unique.

            Straight up the silliest, most fun, super hero game i’ve ever played.

          • euansmith

            Running and swooping around the city as the POTUS was great. They really nailed the sweet spot between flight control and endurance. The flight in Gat Out Of Hell is even better with it limited zooming and flapping. By the way, I consider being “GTA’s ugly, stupid bother” to be a compliment 😉

          • Vomkrieg

            Still haven’t played Gat out of hell, waiting for a steam sale (like i do with every game purchase)

    • Shiwan8

      Still better love story than twilight.

  • markdawg

    Another blame the players article nice. A balanced rule set hurt no wargame ever.

  • dvs0ne

    Not sure if everyone has the right mind set when playing 6+ edition 40k. Everyone still views their primary army book as the deciding factor to their power level. Took me a long time to get away from that kind of thinking. I don’t have to play only DE. Allies matrix gives me the option for my own wraith knight etc. Less of I play DE, but instead my ARMY consists of these factions. Expecting a mono source army to always do well against a combined force army is silly. Unless their CWE or crons. Every army with allies, has the potential to do well against all comers. It’s the mindset of old editions army building and stubbornness is what’s holding them back. Even harlies can compete. … with friends

    • Michael Gerardi

      “Allies” is one of the primary factors that drove me OUT of 6th (and its successors that keep it).

  • MajorSoB

    Lousy article. You missed the point. 40K is broken. You can try to shift blame to the players specifically the tournament crowd but in all reality the blame rests squarely on the shoulders of GW. For the past several year they have adopted the policy that they indeed know what is best and ignored any feedback from the community of players. Instead of designing a solid core rule set they adopted the policy that more is better and that their fanboys will continue to support their game no matter what. Sure GW still sells models but in my FLGS it is now rare to see a 40K or fantasy game. Why? Because GW is expensive, their rules are ambiguous to say the least and rather than focus on a quality set of rules GW just pumps out more rules and more models into an already broken system. Most players jumped ship. X-Wing, Warmahordes, Malfaux and Star Trek Attack Wing tend to lead the tabletop miniature games now. Magic is huge. Again, why? Tighter rules, support and lower buy in prices. 40k used to draw 12-18 players at my FLGS each month, now when tourneys actually get run they draw 3 or 4 players. Woohoo! The bottle is broken and there is no fixing this mess. See ya GW you had a nice run while it lasted!!!

    • Shiwan8

      For some of us “migration” is not possible. It’s honestly this or quit. None of the other options appeal to my inner fluff bunny at all because of their honestly wimpy nature even though they might be better as games.

      Then again, the quitting is realistic option in the future if the trend continues. It’s not like there is nothing else to do. 😀

  • DaveTycho
  • Shiwan8

    It’s a game. Games have winners and losers. Trying to deny this is foolish. So is trying to deny the importance of balance in a game.

    It can not be the gamers responsibility to try to unbreak a broken game. Besides, it’s less the rules and more the codices in this case.

  • Benderisgreat

    Also, there was that interview where the GW staffer admitted they don’t play test the codices, nor do they try to balance them in any way. They go for whatever’s fun, balance be damned. That’s why you get unbalanced codices and broken builds.

  • Gian Carlo Peirce

    or like maybe actually playtest the game a bit more before releasing.

  • Muninwing

    two good players looking for a fun match can play and have fun with a minimum of discussion.

    but…

    this article is essentially blaming players for mistakes on the part of the writing company.

    let’s not forget that not every player has the same idea of “fair,” knowledge of the game, or general ideas of what the game should be.

    that is why, since the variables are pretty complex and the average person has neither the time nor the computer models to break it down, players rely upon another system to provide reasonable balance.

    and given that there are many sources of data — tournaments, playtesting, etc — and that with every new release the game changes, such models would also need to change with the times. and that’s something they can have control over.

    and somehow their neglect of that control, and the results of that neglect, are — according to this “broken bottle” analogy — our fault as players.

    no, GW screwed up big time for years. and not just Ward, but everyone who allowed it to happen and continue. that neglect torpedoed WHF. and now somehow we are supposed to just accept that they let the house catch fire while they were playing with their rubber duckie in the bath?

    sorry, no dice. especially if they don’t bother to rise to occasion after realizing what has happened.

  • PrimoFederalist

    We live in a world wherein companies can communicate instantly with their customers and vice versa, and, in the age of video games, a patch fix can be released to fix the mechanics of a game.

    In that environment, with the supreme balance of games like Star Craft and WoW having entered the subconscious expectations of nerd/geek culture, Games Workshop keeps doing everything in its power to keep its customers at arm’s length and get away from making a well-balanced game where the rules match the cool universe they created.

    I see which way the wind is blowing with the AoS, and I’m not sticking around to see them do the same thing to 40K.

    I started playing the *game* right when 3rd edition dropped, but the past year or so has made it clear that the product GW is now peddling is not what I’m looking for: I want a relatively balanced game created by a company engaged with its customer base who does their best to correct mistakes or imbalances in the rules. In an environment where you could “patch” codices overnight, they refuse to engage us.

    They have doubled-down on the fact that their new stance is that they are a models company which happens to write some game rules for the models.

    Until they change what is clearly their new business model, I’m done being one of their customers. Not rage-quitting or anything like that, just sadly turing my focus elsewhere to other companies who love their fans and look forward to their feedback.

    P.S. The GW booth at GenCon – hahaha, what a perfect example of what the company thinks of us! The guys manning the booth didn’t know the game and there was zero effort put into the booth. The impression I get from GW is, unless you are a ten-year-old boy out shopping with his parents, please just buy our merchandise and leave.