Should 40k Ditch The D6?


broken d6 dice

Pimpcron may just be a heretic.

Alas dear readers! I just woke up from a super-glue induced vision and boy are my arms tired! Hmm. I think I’m mixing jokes here. Oh well. So while I was out, a flaming gumdrop pony trotted up to me and gently whispered โ€œNo more to-wound rollsโ€ before taking flight and devouring the sun. I don’t know. You glue too many models in a small, poorly-ventilated room and weird shit happens man. But that got me thinking.

Disclaimer: As I’ve said before, 7th Edition is my favorite out of all of them, and if everything stays the same, I’ll be fine with it. It has its problems, but I like it best. So this isn’t me crying to the heavens, beseeching the dark gods to please change my hobby rules. But with all of the talk about a possible streamlined 40k rule set, I was wondering how we could make the game faster without sacrificing too much.

Maybe We Roll Too Many Dice

I know that I’ve heard several people in my personal life say that they’d like to get into 40k but it’s way too much rolling (and too complicated). To hit, to wound, saves, Feel No Pain, re-rolls, etc. It does seem like we could get the same effect by a different means.

I was just thinking that in a typical action in this game, three different sets of dice need to be rolled. That is a crazy amount when you think about it, and it definitely adds to the length of the game. I personally don’t mind this amount of rolling because it’s what I’m used to, but I really feel like it could work if done correctly.

Are The Dice Themselves To Blame?

You create a game by essentially giving all armies the same stats to begin with. Then adding one and subtracting one here and there to make exceptions in order to make each army different. The greater the range of differences in stats, the more unique armies can be. Well ultimately, when you are dealing with a game system solely built on a D6 system, it gives you a very small range of differences for the armies to be different. A 1 through 6, to be specific; technically a 2 through 6 because most things auto-fail on a 1. It’s like when I’m in an elevator and a good song comes on the radio; I need more wiggle room.

dancing elevator“It’s Friday, Friday, Friday …”

So when you are locked into a system that is incredibly limiting, the only thing you can do to allow armies to be different is to increase the NUMBER of times you roll, to increase the range of your options. So rolling three times for one attack is **kind of ** like rolling a D18. So a Space Marine trying to kill an Ork with a bolter is really kind of trying to roll a 16+ on a D18 with each shot.

Many other games use D10’s or D8’s with good results. With a range of 8 or 10 instead of just six, they have more room to play around with. Deadzone, Wild West Exodus and Malifaux come to mind. Just kidding about Malifaux: they use D20s. Ha! Kidding again. That’s not a real game, I just made it up.

8Malifaux-Crossroads-2Let me get out my bag of D20s.

What About Changing It This Way?

Obviously all armies would have to be changed and updated at the same time if they were to implement this type of change and special rules would have to change. Even units would get stat changes, but they would change and we’d get used to it. But if we used a D8 or D10 to hit and wound our targets, we would have enough wiggle room to roll the to-hit and to-wound rolls together and skip one whole phase of the action. This would speed up games a lot.

What if all units had a set To-Hit roll in close combat and shooting like AoS, but the strength versus the toughness of the models involved altered that? My ultimate goal in doing this would be to get roughly the save results as the old way, but just using modifiers and less rolling.

You start with your set To -Hit roll. Then get a +1 to your roll if your strength is higher than their toughness, no change if the stats are the same, and a -1 to your roll if your strength is less than their toughness. If the strength is double the toughness, you might get a +2 to your roll or something.

kid space marineSome of you might think the game would feel this distorted with a D8.

Of course there are other ways to do this, but this is what comes to mind first. Anyway, most of you have probably quit reading by now after reading the title, and are actively picketing outside of Bell of Lost Souls Headquarters. But would it really be the end of the world is the dice changed? We would get used to it and we might get more flexibility and options out of a larger scale of numbers.

HEY GUESS WHAT? Chicken Butt. “The Pimpcron” has created a Warhammer 40k/Wargaming Convention in December 2016. If you live in the Mid-Atlantic area of the U.S. you might want to come have fun with this crazy and adorable robot . . . Like us on Facebook for Updates HERE.

Want to witness my slow descent into madness, first-hand? Check out my blog at

Pimpcron Signature four kids
  • Darth Bumbles

    Who not a D12? 12 is divisible easily, it multiplies realively easily.

    • Davor Mackovic

      Answer is easy. Something sweet in rolling 90 six sided dice. Not the same feeling with a D12.

      • Stan

        To you maybe.
        I find rolling all those dice for no real reason incredibly tiresome and redundant.

        • Grafton Is Dust

          It’s the main reason I don’t play 40K anymore. I play Guard, I need a bucket of dice to kill a Marine. It’s tedious.

          • John Bahr

            Yeah but as both an ork and imps player theres something incredibly satisfying about dumping that bucket of dice all over the marines and their shiny weekly updates

  • Mike X

    …I don’t get the joke about Malifaux. Its card deck system is awesome.

    • Chris. K Cook

      Yeah but I doubt it would work outside of a skirmish system?

      • euansmith

        You could draw a card to see how effectively an entire unit shoots, and your opponent could draw one to see how effectively their entire squad defends.

        • Xodis

          Then you run into a problem with special characters in the squad or attached to the squad. Then what about squads full of special characters, etc…Im not saying its impossible, but probably more difficult than dice.

          • That problem would obviously occur when the card system is forced upon an established, very different system with such prominent use of special characters and myriad special rules. If 40k was designed from the ground up with such a system, though, it could work quite marvelously.

          • Xodis

            That type of redesign would effectively create an Age of Sigmar style change in gameplay. I doubt that would go over too well being such a complete change.

          • blackbloodshaman

            well no, an age of sigmar style change is a vastly different rule set that also sucks donkey kong ba**s i am pretty sure one can come up with a rule set that js vastly different than 40ks uses cards and does not suck donkey kong ba**s

          • Xodis

            Not really but whatever works for you I guess.

          • euansmith

            Aye, I keep forgetting that we are talking bout the cats cradle that is 40k. ๐Ÿ˜€

      • Severius_Tolluck

        Thing is they are going to make a larger based game called breachside.. where forces of malifaux are fighting against the forces of earth or so they rumored.

        • WellSpokenMan

          I’ve heard this as well, but they are adding new masters and have been taking their sweet time on the plastic resculpts, so I’d take that with a massive amount of salt.

    • Here’s the explanation of my joke: I named a bunch of games that used dice other than d6’s, and included malifaux. But malifaux doesn’t use dice, so I started to explain that, and used a comedic technique called diversion to say that they use D20’s, which is also not true. Then i did it again by saying that that game doesn’t exist. I was being silly. But I am a big fan of Malifaux, so just in case someone somewhere didn’t know it existed, I added a picture of a malifaux cover just to prove to that (one?) person that i was joking and that it does exist. I was just being silly.

      • euansmith

        They say that explaining a joke is like dissecting a frog; that, in the end, no one is that interested and the frog dies… This is, of course, incorrect, because dissection is carried out on dead things. Even saying vivisecting would be incorrect, because the frog would still be alive, though probably not very happy.

        • Yes, um. Well. He said he didn’t understand it. So explained it. And yes, I died a little inside.

          • euansmith

            You are a robot. You can’t die.

      • Nostok

        You should have left him wondering… it was comic genius.

        • Thanks! ๐Ÿ™‚ I don’t like to leave people hanging though.

  • MPSwift

    Personally I like the ease of a pure d6 system but I could see it working. Could go for something along the lines of Savage Worlds RP system where a ranged attack always hits on a 4+ regardless of dice rolled but the more skilled you are the ‘better’ dice you roll (d6, d8, d10 etc.) So guardsmen would be BS:d6 while a marine would be BS:d8 etc. both need a 4+ to hit but a marine has a better chance of doing so. In fact you could just make 4+ your base target number for everything and then alter the dice accordingly (combat, wounding etc.) so each stat becomes a dice type rather than a number.

    Though even if you reduced the number of dice required for each roll you’d still need a lot of the more unusual dice types depending on your faction. E.g. 15 blood claws on the charge currently roll 60d6 attacks, even if you reduced this down to 1-2 attacks each with a higher quality dice type (d10/d12 perhaps?) you’d still need 15-30 d10s, d12s which I can’t imagine many people would be too happy buying. Plus unless you were really careful about your storage you’d probably spend at least half your game hunting for the right dice…

    TL;DR, good concept but I get the feeling that the reasons the game moved to pure d6 in the first place are still, if not more, relevant now especially with the game continuing to increase in size/scale.

    • Nocturus

      While I agree buying new dice would be annoying at first (because I already own hundreds of d6s from over the years), I believe 40k players have proven time and time again, cost is not an issue…

      • blackbloodshaman

        nor quality

    • Nostok

      If I remember correctly Rick Priestly said it was to do with cost and ease of access.

  • EvilCheesypoof

    There’s a simple elegance to keeping everything to a D6. It’s not a perfect system, it has to rely on charts, but it works fine.

  • Wonderdog

    Glad you read my previous comments…

    • You must be a psychic. Were you in favor of ditching the d6’s?

  • euansmith

    How about roll D20’s and compare the results to your target’s Defence Stat.

    Any roll less than their DEF are discarded.

    Compare the remaining rolls to your Attack Stat.

    Any rolls that a higher than your ATT are discarded.

    The remaining dice are wounds.

    This could be modified by something like, “If the target is in cover, then any even numbered rolls are discarded”.

    DEF would be on a scale from 1 to 11, and ATT would range from 11 to 20.

    You could have keywords that define which weapons could affect which targets; Light (Infantry), Medium (Walkers and Light Vehicles), Heavy (Tanks), Flyer (Flyers), and WTF (Titans and their ilk); or maybe give each unit an ATT and DEF stat for each type of target.

    Just an idea, but I hope it does show that there are other ways of approaching the rolling phase.

    • jazeroth

      not a witty comment! not impressed! ๐Ÿ˜€

      • euansmith

        Noob! If you take every fourth, eleventh and twenty-third letter and apply a von Junzt Transposition you end up with a particularly foul joke about the Archbishop of Canterbury and a stout. Do I really have to do all the work for you? I know how Stuart Lee feels now. ๐Ÿ™

        • ZeeLobby


        • benn grimm

          It is hard being smarter than everyone else… I hear… ๐Ÿ˜‰

          • euansmith

            Oddly, I was considered a dullard on my home planet of Colu.

    • blackbloodshaman

      i think by now anyone who still likes 40k has a strong case of Stockholm syndrome and probably would be angered by a good rule set

      • zeno666

        So true!
        They wouldn’t know how to deal with it. It would be like introducing female characters in the game ๐Ÿ˜‰

    • maximus4646

      You mean, kind of like in Corvus Belli’s Infinity? A game with far more tactical flexibility and a heightened capacity for “forging the narrative”? Infinity – and the absurd $50 price tag for two plastic boxes – was the reason I left 40k. And i’m nearly 40 and can afford most wargaming stuff I want.
      Nothing against 40k, but it’s like people who only listen to the Beetles. C’mon folks, war-gaming innovation has so much potential and the folks at Corvus Belli have figured out how to leverage IT in the 21st and monetize a game that is growing: online army builders, balanced rule-set, community participation in the creation of fluff based on online campaign event participation, etc. etc.

      • euansmith

        What cracked me up when playing Infinity was that the die rolling conventions were lifted directly from the roleplaying game “Pendragon”; not just slightly, totally ๐Ÿ˜‰

        • maximus4646

          Funny – I didn’t know that. Probably stolen because it’s such a good mechanic! Although perhaps a d20 is more relevant in skirmish-based games? The 5% increment allows for more meaningful modifiers. Plus, in infinity, there’s always a 5% chance for a critical.

          • V10_Rob

            “Good artists borrow. Great artists steal”

  • Heinz Fiction

    I don’t really like the D8 and D10. They don’t roll that well. D12 and D20 are fine. However while they allow more fine tuning of statlines each point of difference becomes less meaningful. Whether your attribute is 13 or 14 on a D20 makes almost no difference (5%). And the advantage of D6 is that everyone already have them and that they are the easiest to read, specifically if rolled in large numbers.

  • sjap98

    Keep the D6, ditch the To Wound Roll.
    Use Pimpcron’s idea to modify the save: if the Strength of your weapon is higher than my Toughness, i get a -1 modifier to my save, if it’s double: -2.
    Also , in Close Combat, please make differences in Weapon Skills matter much more than it does now.

    • Shiwan8

      Ditching the wound roll will lead to grots shooting down titans. Is that a good thing?

      • Darth Bumbles

        Surely that’d be covered in the Titan’s saving roll?

        • Shiwan8

          Since the best save is 2++, not really.

          • Darth Bumbles

            Good point.
            But if you remove the roll to wound, it’d be easy to create an additional rule to the effect of “any weapon less than strength whatever will have zero effect on this unit”.

          • Admiral Raptor

            I think you just do it like AoS does. Anything can hit and wound anything but giant monsters (or in our case vehicles) have a ton of wounds. So even if our heroic grots manage to get through the Titans defenses they’re taking of one wound out of dozens and the Titan isn’t much worse for wear.

          • Darth Bumbles

            That works too.

          • euansmith

            “Senior Princeps, the Grotts, they are getting in through the cooling ducts! They are INSIDE our armour!”

          • Shiwan8

            So, essentially the time saved by losing one roll step is lost in the endless checking of what’s immune to what. I’d rather keep rolling.

          • euansmith

            2++ re-rollable!

          • Shiwan8

            Yeah. That’s always good for the game. ๐Ÿ˜‰

        • Andrew Thomas

          And it’s ridiculous mountains of Hit Points… and an ability to regenerate… and immunity to Mortal Wounds… and… and…

          It starts to get ridiculous.

      • euansmith

        You can simply catagorise targets and weapons; so the Titans can only be taken out with Anti-Titan weapons.

        • Shiwan8

          Then, in stead of rolling to wound we would spend the time flipping through a hundred page “what’s immune to what” book. It would be helpful in a game with maybe 3 unit types but we have a lot more than that which also have their own sub types.

          • euansmith

            A few keywords could sort it, “Does your unit have the target’s keyword in its Attack Profile; if so, blaze away.”

          • Shiwan8

            Yes, and there would be a lot of those keywords.

          • euansmith

            Why, you only need to differentiate between Infantry, Light Armour, Heavy Armour and Super Heavy Armour?

          • Shiwan8

            Weapon types, various ammo types, how things work with different special rules and so on. It’s a huge maze of things.

          • euansmith

            I was thinking more along the lines of actually doing something about reducing the vast rules bloat in the game.

            Maybe concentrating more on the role a unit is supposed to fulfill on the battlefield and then stat them up according to that; rather than focusing on which gun a bloke has and which ammo he has filled it with and how that effects the special rule generated by the armour being worn by one bloke in the target squad.

            I think that level of micro detail is okay in a squad level skirmish game, where each mini is a unit; but in a company level game like 40k it strikes me as being to fiddly.

      • Davor Mackovic

        Yes. If you are making an army for take all comers then YES be prepared to fight all grots. Simple Answer.

        • Shiwan8

          So, you think that it’s reasonable that grots kill warlord titans by throwing rocks at it? What is the reasoning behind this logic of yours?

          • Davor Mackovic

            Yes. Any more reasonable than a SM being what only one point more than a CSM? Any more reasonable than SM getting 2″ of free movement? Any more reasonable than SM getting free grenades AND NOT HAVING TO CHOOSE WHAT TO BUY? It use to be before on or the other.
            How about a Genestealer or 2 spore mines equal one space marine.
            Look, the Imperium of Man got a lot of FREE buffs and the easy button, so this is not a big deal. Boy you have a lot of guts talking about unreasonable. Game already is.
            I guess if you need to win with plastic toy soldiers you can cry over this being killed by grots, but that is why you make A TAKE ALL COMERS LIST. You really going to see an all grots army? If you do you should be prepared for it. Heaven forbid you take your “easy button” away.
            40K is not a reasonable game to begin with. Other wise is it reasonable for lots of units in the game getting free tanks and what not for ‘just because’?
            After all who is to say these rocks are not Anti Titan rocks? ๐Ÿ˜›

          • Shiwan8

            Ok. You are really angry. Couple of points though:

            1) I play CSM so I would not know anything about easy buttons.
            2) I’d rather play a bad game that makes sense than something worse like the thing you are now suggesting.

            Calm down, take a step back from the hobby and think if it’s worth getting upset about on the level you take offense from losing.

          • Davor Mackovic

            LOL not Angry. Just replying to how some things are not reasonable in 40K right now. So to take offence to your grots and titans seem funny to me that you don’t take the other stuff we have right now.
            BTW I thought you were angry and a titan player. ๐Ÿ˜›
            How do you get paragraphs? For me reason BOLS will not do it for me sometime.

          • euansmith

            If you can’t get linebreaks (paragraphs) any other way, you can use BBCode.

          • Grafton Is Dust

            Psst, that’s HTML, not BBCode. ๐Ÿ˜‰

          • euansmith
          • Shiwan8

            There’s plenty to fix in the game, first of which is the attitude GW has towards different armies.

            Not a titan player. Just don’t want to drag the game deeper in to the crap it’s been buried in by GW.

            My magical paragraph trick is: Do it manually.

          • Grafton Is Dust

            I found the angsty CSM player!

  • Shiwan8

    Well, no.

  • Deacon Ix

    3rd Ed was brought out to simplify the rules – no more maths, only D6s. in second I had about 10D6, 2D10 (D100), D20, D12, D8 and a D4, this was enough for any roll, now I have occasions to roll over 100D6… and have rules that negate teh normal practice (but only on a tuesday) and still have addition and subtraction to dice rolls… Simpler my A$$.

    • 10 D6 only? Well, then you never had more than 5 Guardians or Space Marines, eh? I do remember rapid fire weapons pretty well…

      • Deacon Ix

        11 – you made me find out my old dice pot – I played Chaos so CC was my thing, the Bloodthirster had 11 attacks on the charge ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Beyond the gate of antares system is quite cool and use D10.

    • You get to hit and then wound with a res test and save modifiers (if. I recall). The d10 also allows for critical fail ans success.

      • Admiral Raptor

        I’m a big fan of both antares and bolt action. I’d love to see Warlord games write the 40k rule set.

        • euansmith

          Bolter Action! ๐Ÿ˜‰

        • Grafton Is Dust

          I don’t find Bolt Action that fun, sadly. I’d rather Warlord didn’t

          • euansmith

            It would be an odd world if we all liked the same things.

            “Marge! We’re all out of icrecream!”

  • Admiral Raptor

    I like it. Anything that would help make the game faster or more enjoyable I whole heartily support.

  • ILikeToColourRed

    I’ve often thought that the game is limited by the D6, which doesn’t fit the statlines varying from 1-10

  • While I would prefer something other than d6, the core of the problem is still in the core rules. Too many dice aren’t a fault of the dice but of the rules. AoS, while incredibly simple, doesn’t stray too far from this, either.

    Issue is with the way GW designs its games. The charts, the large units, etc, will always contribute to the problem. 10 dudes that get 2 shots each will still need 20 dice, be they d6 or d20s.

    Again, we would need a revamp of the entire way that GW designs its games.

    • ZeeLobby

      Well. Supposedly a semi-AOSing is on its way, so we can only hope. Problem is all their game designing talent was let go.

      • Grafton Is Dust

        Their game designing talent then went on to make such successes as Mars Attacks, Antares and Deadzone, which are all tedious to mediocre.

        Seriously, “Ex-GW Employee,” seems to be this high accolade that doesn’t actually result in stellar games. Methinks this is down to ye olde editions not actually being that good, but nostalgia compensating by adding a warm glow.

        • ZeeLobby

          Your “tedious to mediocre” is actually popular around here. And way to cherry pick. Andy Chambers, Alessio Cavatore and Jake Thornton are all doing perfectly fine right now. Bolt Action, Dropfleet Commander, Flames of War, the FFG 40K rpg series, KoW, etc. All are popular games. Unless you’re suggesting that it’s because they don’t pull in the profits that those designers brought to GW?

          • Grafton Is Dust

            Dropfleet Commander? You mean the game that isn’t out yet?

            I mean that, having played all those games…the ones actually released, at least, only FFG’s RPG was particular good. KoW is a flavourless copy of ye olde fantasy, Flames of War is alright tbf, and Bolt Action is…alright, I guess.

            I’m optimistic for Dropfleet, but IIRC whatsisface only helped with the development of that, according to the chat I had with Simon at Salute, at least. The game was still very much his, they just got the GW guy on board to help out with the details and balancing as they’d worked on BFG.

          • ZeeLobby

            A lot of people around here really like KoW. I don’t play it personally, but they find it enjoyable. But to say that the talent that left GW is just being seen through rose-tinted glasses is kind of disingenuous. Andy alone brought us Necromunda, BFG, 2nd, 3rd and 4th edition 40K, BFG, Epic and many codexes (some of the best). Clearly Simon valued his talent to bring him on for DFC, which is being paired with he already popular DZC, so I’m guessing it’ll be solid.

            My point is that when GW is reaching out to community grown comp systems for an AoS point system, it’s quite clear that the talent required to design such systems in house is just not there anymore.

          • Grafton Is Dust

            But my problem is that they’re just taking what they made it GW and repolishing it. Deadzone is a rebuffed Necromunda, KoW is just Fantasy with all the unique lore bled out.

            I rarely see anything from ex-GW employees that’s clever or new, they just keep making the same stuff.

          • ZeeLobby

            Being a good game designer doesnt mean coming up with new and clever things constantly. The majority of their skill and talent is towards creating good mechanics, creating synergistic combos, creating unique and individual factions and then balancing all of those. There’s a limited amount of design space. Even many of GWs games steal large components or design from other games. New games aren’t just thrown out every year but evolve.

            More importantly what has GW put out since they left that is original and/or unique? They’ve continued their main lines and killed most of their unique specialist games. The reason these designers left and created clones of what GW was still making was because in many cases the original games were their creations, and when GW told them they were out they didnt want to abandon them. As a designer that’s extremely common, and some of the copied games, like Dreadball, are much better mechanically then their originals.

            AoS is an example of what GW has the capability of producing now. 4 pages of rules, 100s of pages of unit specific rules, and no balancing factors. 40K has just continued to slowly erode from what Andy Chambers created.

          • Grafton Is Dust

            I’m not really a GW fan, so I don’t know why you’re asking me what unique stuff GW has done lately.

          • ZeeLobby

            The clear discrepancy between products pre and post exodus clearly indicates the talent they possessed. The whole point is/was that it’s not just nostalgia based. Clearly those who left went on to make other successful games. Whether or not you find the depth of them as sufficient is anecdotal. Clearly the companies they’ve designed for are still profitable.

          • Grafton Is Dust

            Many things are profitable, but not necessary of any quality.

          • ZeeLobby

            Quality is subjective though. Obviously enough people that play those games think that they’re high enough quality to invest both time and money into them. Enough to keep them profitable.

          • Grafton Is Dust

            If they’re profitable. They’re probably only as profitable as GW games are.

          • ZeeLobby

            Well GW sales have been dropping yearly. Mantic is expanding its lines and adding expansions to each. So read that as you will

          • Grafton Is Dust

            Mantic don’t publish their figures though, because they’re not legally obligated to.

            Spartan Games keep producing new lines, expansions and games, but I know for a fact they’re not doing well financially. Often a company that’s having trouble with existing lines will try and expand onto new lines to generate new profit.

          • ZeeLobby

            Let’s just say I have insider knowledge that mantic is comfortable. 2nd hand knowledge but still, I believe it. That said they arent publicly traded so neither what you or I say has any factual weight behind it. All I know is that people are playing KoW, and even buying their minis, which are honestly quite bad. But the game design is solid and balanced.

            And profitable companies continue expanding to generate new profit as well. That’s no real indicator. I just happen to know why mantic is, so I used it when I probably shouldn’t have.

  • Joka

    Well, here in Italy we have a couple of rpgs that work with “poker-like” cards and it works woders except for one flaw: you can foretell if there are too many fumbles or a lot of criticals to come: if there are 5 cards left and 2 critical success out of 4 have been drawn i could attempt something utterly reckless with no ingame reason to be so bold.
    On the other hand in a skirmish game? That would be golden, you can call that your “tactical genius”, reading the flow of battle, preparing a counterstrike when the enemy “runs out of steam”: it would be fluffy and a cornestone for the meta. Furthermore it equalizes a little bit the luck factor.
    On the other hand while this could work for killteam/500pts, idk how it would go when you bring your full battle company.

    And just to top it off: Emperor’s tarots, Runes of the ancient Eldar, some elemental stuff for eldar, the 4 chaos gods… there would be A LOT of ideas for cool decks aesthetics.

    • Shiwan8

      Well, the deck would have to be huge! There are hundreds of rolls in a single game. Shuffling that….I’d rather not.

      • Joka

        Well, the systems i’m referring to are based on the “arcana minoris” of the Marseille Tarots and the basic poker deck. so 56 and 54 cards respectively. You jus reshuffle with a certain card (in the first example the ace of spades, wich is -as all aces- a critical)

        • Shiwan8

          Then the 50 strong cult army squad charges with full prejudice and you’ll end up shuffling the deck alot. That’s 200 attacks right there.

          • Joka

            Who says you need to flip a card for each and any of those attacks?
            There are a lot of ways, thinking out of the box to make a different system. I’m just saying the simple d6 system may be too old and non effective: as pimpcron (SEXY HE IS) said you can get more variation just with d8 or d10. A completely different system without dice is imho possible, just maybe not the best for 40k. (beside i spoke about 200 to 500pts games, how you can bring a 150pts unit of cultist in a 200pts games and not be thrown out of a window by every general bystander beats me)

          • Shiwan8

            I do. If you reduce the randomness to one or two cards it eats away the epic feel of the game. 40k is a hame in which you simply can not make less “rolls” than there are attacks.

  • Davor Mackovic

    I don’t know, there is something magical about using six sided dice. Monopoly uses it. Casinos use it.
    Also what can be done on a 10 or 20 sided dice can be done on a 6 sided dice. The only difference is THE ODDS. It all becomes on how much of a die hard you are for odds. Do you want that 18% or really need that 5%?
    GW games are not to be taken seriously. 40K is not to be taken seriously. The game is suppose to be move models, roll dice and go “pew pew”.
    Also if 40K started using non six sided dice, then people will be up in arms in how much harder it’s to hit something, save something and then ironically get healed magically after taking a wound since it hit your toe the odds of making those rolls will be lots worse and then the game will drag on even longer.
    No there is a reason why six sided dice are used.

    • Grafton Is Dust

      How would the odds be worse? The idea is to allow more granularity, not make everything harder to do.

      40K might have been intended to be designed that way, but it’s in the same way the Yugo is designed to be a family car – badly.

  • MightyOrang

    Speaking as an ork player you can never roll too many dice

    That said I agree that the system should change to something more like a D10 scale. The comparative depth of the game suffers when we are restricted to a one through six range, particularly when one is always a failure and six is frequently always a success

    The game would be stronger if there was greater range in capabilities โ€“ โ€“ give some better perspective on just how scary Marines and daemon prince is our when compared to the rest of the universe.

    Problem of course is that would require a complete overhaul of the books through a series of FAQs. That would require Games Workshop to sit down and really think hard about how the mechanics of the game are structured and units comparative strengths and weaknesses.

    And we all know they’re just a model company

    • Grafton Is Dust

      Speaking as a Guard playing, rolling a tonne of dice for no real effect is tedious. :

  • LordKrungharr

    I love all those Platonic solids and would enjoy using them for some reason in 40k. Kings of War has a simplified attack system like the Pimpcron is talkin bout. It’s certainly faster. Cover and movement affects the To Hit rolls, and the attacker rolls vs the defense stat of the enemy for the To Wound. Feel No Pain could make the attacker reroll some To Wounds or something.

  • Randy Randalman

    The D6 is fine. There just needs to be fewer layers of rolling. There shouldn’t be 30 dice rolled through five steps just to do a single wound.

  • SeekingOne

    Disagree (almost) completely.
    Firstly, D6 works well enough for this game. Consider shooting as an example – we have To Hit rolls of 6+ through 2+ there. 6+ means basically wild snap-shooting, 5+ means poor skill, 4+ is mediocre skill, 3+ is good skill and 2+ is superb. This is a good enough range of different “skill levels”, and – what is most important here – the difference between those skills is pretty distinct. 2+ is clearly better than 3+, 3+ clearly better than 4+ etc. While if you replace D6 with say D12, you’ll have more room to introduce more variable skill levels, but most of those skill levels would be hardly distinguishable from one another. Even on D6, the difference between 4+ and 3+ becomes really apparent when you roll like 10+ dice, and when rolling some 3-5 dice it seems barely visible. And the difference between 5+ and 6+ on D12 would be pretty much impossible to tell in most rolls. Not worth it IMO.

    Secondly, 3-rolls mechanic is great. It does help to imitate that distinction between attackers skill & strength and defender’s armor which feels kind of natural for tabletop simulation of combat. One thing that is somewhat interesting in AoS is how each weapon there has a fixed damage roll and Toughness is represented by the number of wounds a model has – but that’s just an alternative mechanic and doesn’t reduce the number of rolls. Besides, in 40k environment tracking damage on multiple multi-wound models would likely be a nightmare.
    The only way to reduce the number of rolls is to reduce the number of stats a model has – and that would be a bad thing, meaning even less distinction between models and less character to them.

    What would help to streamline the game is reducing the number of extra actions that a player is required to take. And that doesn’t mean throwing rules out – although some of them deserve that, e.g. Mysterious objectives. Instead, some rules can be re-made from giving an extra action to giving a player a fixed bonus that works automatically. For instance, consider Fleet of Foot – it gives a player a re-roll of Run distance which is an extra action, and, more importantly, requires him to think and make a decision whether he wants that reroll or not. Why not re-write it into something like “Units with FoF rule add +2″ to any Run or Assault move they make (up to the total of 6″ and 12″ respectively)”.

    Just some thoughts… ๐Ÿ™‚

  • vlad78

    Ditch the yougoigo system.

    • Grafton Is Dust

      Alternate Activations would help so much, IMO.

    • V10_Rob

      It would certainly keep the other guy reasonably involved, instead of wandering off for an hour while you finish your turn.

  • ctFallen

    While it wouldn’t fix the number of dice rolled and alot would need to change I really like a 2d6 system with modifiers rather than re-rolls except in certain extreme exceptions. I feel with a 1d6 system its to random, modifiers make a bigger difference and re-rolls are super powerfull. With a 2d6 system you can count on certain roll being more likely to come up (like 7)rather than the 1/6,1/2, etc you get with a d6. Sorry im not good at explaining what i mean. I just like the way 2d6 is still random but makes it a little less so than a single d6 and allows modifiers to not be as extreme as they are with a d6 allowing them to be used more. Tho larger dice size would allow for modifiers to not be as extreme also. I also wouldn’t be apposed to using multiple types of dice like in Rogue Trader and 2nd edition but I know that just make things over complicated so isn’t a good idea.

  • Talos2

    Malifaux uses dice does it? Seriously?

  • Severius_Tolluck

    AS it is in nearly all other games. Infinity uses d20, and has modifiers for range, cover, etc that change the value of hitting. Cover modifies your save by one, and gives negative modifiers to hit you.

    Flames of war uses d6, but is much simpler in that it has modifiers in range and cover to your hit roll as well as opposing skill level, much like bolt action. All infantry get 3+ saves from everything. If they they are in cover they get a ward save basically that the opponent must roll for called a firepower check. Which is basically saying the strength of the weapon. As all weapons are deadly to inf period, it’s how well do they blow through cover! Tanks are a simpler version of 40k. Weapon has a strength and the aforementioned firepower value. Beats the armor its a pen and you perform firepower check to see if blown up, otherwise it stuns hte tank. If equal tank is glanced and you check to see if again tank is stunned. Very fast, very simple and works well in tourney!.

  • Grafton Is Dust

    D8s won’t make rolling Guard any less tedious. In fact, rolling 100 D8s for a Conscript shooting phase would be feckin’ tedious.

    I think part of the problem is that 40K is a game of throwing craptonnes of dice at each other, and that you’re rolling constantly. Other games like Firestorm Armada have much smaller dice pools and you roll less often. Firer rolls Attack Dice, defender rolls their deliberately-small defence pool, the game doesn’t lose pace.

    I roll my Psychic test for Prescience on my Conscripts, my opponent rolls against it. I then roll my Leadership test for my Order. I then collect 100 dice for my Conscripts to shoot. I roll the pool, pick out all the 5s, put them to one side. I then reroll the remaining dice. All the successes are collected. I then roll the Wounds, on 5s typically, and count the successes to my opponent.

    They then count out from their dice pool to match it in saves. They roll Armour Save, then possibly re-roll it, then roll Feel No Pain, or Reainimation Protocols.

    Typically all that work results in like, five dead Marines.

    Conversely, X-Wing gets a lot done with small pools of dice, I never have to roll more than ten dice at a time for Dropzone unless it’s CQB, and Halo Fleet doesn’t use more than thirty dice and you only have to roll it once.

  • Jacob

    I do miss the days of 2nd Edition and my bag of Gem Dice…
    Bring the things back

  • crazyredpraetorian

    Get out of here with your commie talk!!!

  • Lord Solar Mac

    It is a bit excessive when an army that is already statistically better, gets to virtually reroll everything, even if it’s only once per game, without paying for the upgrade (looking at you Ultramarine CT). I know because some Codexes haven’t “caught up” to newer ones, but this really gives a huge advantage to some armies over others. Doesn’t mean the “lessential loved” armies can’t win, just there is a distinct disadvantage. I play Imperial Guard and Tyranids, so some of you know what I mean…although my IG aren’t too bad. A different die scale would be welcome, but then you would have a shift in rules/codexes. As long as GW managed it well, I don’t think it would bad….Heck can’t get any worse than what some people think of the game lol

    • Lord Solar Mac

      That should say “less loved” above….darn auto correct!

  • JP

    Based on what I’m seeing here…. people want 40k to become a Warmachine/Flames of War hybrid.

    • ZeeLobby

      I’d take anything at this point. But I’d honestly be happy with the same mechanics and a rebalancing.

    • Shiwan8

      I hope not. The 2 things “wrong” with the game is badly written rules that let people twist them and the balance that is the one problem that is actually not up to the players themselves. Other than that it’s fine.

      • JP

        As long as GW’s business model is drive model sales with rules creep, that’s NEVER going to change.

        • Shiwan8

          The balance could be a lot tighter and they would still sell, likely more.

          • JP

            They’re not going to take that risk. Look at the response they got from Age of Sigmar. If that could be considered a test to see what would happen if they implemented large scale, fundamental changes to the game, then they’ve likely concluded that doing it to 40k, which is much bigger than Fantasy was, would be hugely detrimental to their business. It’s just not something they’re willing to gamble on when 40k is their lifeblood.

          • Shiwan8

            Balancing the game is not really comparable to that since it’s just making new codices equal to eldar and keeping the level there while changing what is good and what is not.

          • JP

            But that would require effort, you know, doing math and playtesting to see if the new codices are on par and all that. And we know they don’t like to exert themselves too much. They could end up huwting their widdle peanut bwains. Numbers are confusing and scawy to them.

          • Shiwan8

            That’s just too accurate. ๐Ÿ˜€

    • zeno666

      I would like to see a 15mm 40k game. With rules written by some other company though…

  • Thomson

    The d6 has a brilliant statistical scale. Multiple D6 are fantastic. The problem with the bigger dice is that they have a longer linear scale. If you want to use less dice, use 3d6. Nice bell curve. Instead of rolling more dice use a fire table. So you can basically handle the attack of 50 guardsmen with one roll of 3 dice.

    If you don’t like to look something up in tables, and if you don’t like modifiers, a bucket of d6 is the best thing you can have.

    • euansmith

      That takes me back to the days of yore, when chaps used Society of Ancients 6th Edition to fight their battles like gentlemen. Adding up your fractional factors, and then rolling average dice for regular troops and standard dice for irregular troops. Ah, the days were golden, and the men like heroes… of course, DBA is far superior ๐Ÿ˜€

  • Emprah

    D10 or D20 would be much better and allow for a greater range of versatility amongst units and weapons.

  • aka_mythos

    2d10 read as if it were a d100. Any combination of any other dice and progression of dice rolls can be reduced to a statistical percentage and thus a single 2d10 roll. On 2d10 you can have built into the die roll the degree of loss. Roll a 99 every enemy of a unit in range is wounded.

    Of course this would require you to round up and round down to whole numbers… Depending on how much rounding would be acceptable you could reduce it to a single d6.

    Such a system then allows the point costs of a unit to be based on a true statistical performance.

  • Me

    This idea is probably much worse than it sounds in my head…

    If they keep the D6 system, they could abstract a good portion away by including an official electronic virtual dice rolling machine. Type in 40, and it would give six columns with the number of results for each value totaling 40 dice. Seal it up so that it is one piece outside of the battery door to make it tamper proof (for tournies) – and tournies could provide their own.

    Something like this should not cost more than a few dollars to make, and it would allow people/tournies who want to to continue rolling the real dice.

  • benn grimm

    I don’t think the problem is with the dice or how many sides it has, so much as number of shots/attacks/saves/psychic stuff/objectives of mystery etc etc…rolling to hit is fine, rolling to wound is fine, practically every model getting at least a five up save nearly all the time, for being near a wooden fence or particularly robust blade of grass, is not fine. The number of dice involved in manifesting psychic powers, is not fine. A gazillion and one shots from one tau suit, is not fine.

    Rolling for table/first turn is fine; rolling to see how many objectives, what psyker powers, what war gear I get(daemon player), what my warlord ate for breakfast, whether it’s a sunny day etc etc is not fine. Rolling for the gosh darn warpstorm table every gosh darn turn, is not fine. Watching 40 attacks from da boyz still bounce off power armor is not fine. Rolling on a chart every time I take a morale check, which then leads to further rolling, is not fine. It’s tedious, extremely tedious, not fun, not exciting….tedious…

  • uatu13

    I’m all for ditching the d6 as the only dice used in 40K. For some things it’s great, but it’s pretty limiting for representing what is actually going on in the game. A grot fighting a primarch?…needs 5’s to hit. An Avatar fighting a guardsman?…need’s 3’s to hit. Yeah, really makes sense.

  • ChubToad

    Today in BoLS: Let’s all be game designers for a day! :p

    • euansmith

      It would be nice if GW gave it a go ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • zeno666

        Ouch! Good one ๐Ÿ˜‰

      • Admiral Raptor

        Well done!

  • Andrew Thomas

    Rolling bigger or smaller dice has marginal effect on game time; moving numerically superior or inferior armies has a huge effect on game time. What say we make horde armies viable by creating rules for multi-based units instead of fiddling with the system maths?

    • euansmith

      Dumping templates could speed things up a bit too.

      • Don’t steal my article ideas.

      • Andrew Thomas

        IDK, having weapons that do multiple wounds per failed Save doesn’t strike me as saving time any more than having to math out the final position of a template.

        • euansmith

          I was thinking more about the movement aspect. That, if you don’t need to fret about getting the maximum spacing between the members of your squad, then horde armies can be moved by the hand full.

          • Andrew Thomas

            Well, set Unit Coherency distances do save a lot of book-keeping, in comparison to other games. And then there’s the whole wear & tear issue.

  • Nate

    The d6 is the best choice for multiple reasons. 1) it has the fewest variables, without being a pain to read. This makes it less random. 2) pips are visual and easy to visually recognize which dice you keep instead of reading numbers. 3) the more dice in a pool, the less random the results. Dice pools are self stabilizing, allowing occasional outlying highs and lows while maintaining a steady performance the rest of the game.

  • Benderisgreat

    D20’s are where it’s at, anyway.

    • Shiwan8

      A table full of terrain, 50 guardsmen shooting at rapid fire. Roll 50d20, get a quick count of successes, repeat with wounds, repeat with saves.

      Sounds doable….?

  • NikosanPrime

    This may have been said already but I don’t have time to read everything so here we go: just put modifiers back into the game. Make it easy or difficult to do things not just its always the same thing. Used to be you had target modifiers for distance, cover, accuracy of weapon, targeting systems.

    These changed your ability to hit. Not a cover save but an Actual Modifier to Hit/Miss. This made all those skilled characters and elite units awesome. It made races that were better at stuff actually better at stuff. Back in the days when a Marine squad using terrain were bad-asses because they had a decent armour save and were now harder to hit in the first place.

    This one change would make the game fun and tactically challenging again. If there is anything I want to see rules wise it is this.

    Of course that would mean that the points costs would need to be reconsidered for all of those higher armour save armies. They will be tough as nails if they can also use cover to their advantage.

    • That sounds pretty neat.

    • Shiwan8

      Looking at the AP levels we have armor saves could just count as free in points.

      Other than that I’m all for this.

  • Ronin

    You could do a D10 system like Dark Heresy although it’d be easier to shift to if they were mass produced in miniature sizes like D6’s are.

  • Lakados

    I haven’t played 40k in a long number of years, cough cough 3’rd but that is because work took me to the remote ends of the earth not for a lack of wanting to play. I am now old and the new rules are intimidating, I would personally love to see something simple like the D20 system used. It is streamlined, just about everybody knows it and it cuts down on a good number of rolls while giving a lot of freedom to the individual models.
    I say this as essentially an outsider at this point because of how long it has been since I sat at a table and busted out the armies but the game looks more and more like D&D in space only with out the simplicity and a lot more arguing.

  • Mr.Fister

    we need another turn system: everyone can controw one unit…then its the enemy’s turn…so you can eleminate the first turn problem!

    • Shiwan8

      So, deathstars would be de facto unkillable.

      • Mr.Fister

        I do not see a problem here: you need to move all other units before you can move the first unit again…look to buy, assemble and paint a unit of 10 guardsman is as time consuming and costly as most of the other units…yet when the opponent gets first turn he whipes out multiple units of guardsmen before I could do a thing with them…a player paints models to use them not to put them on a table for 5 minutes and then back in the case…making guardsmen or other units more resilient is not the way but this turn system would allow you to do sth with those models before they get blasted anyway. Now it is like they stand still and shout “shoot me eldar-san!”

        • Shiwan8

          I see your point and agree that it’s frustrating to go through the effort of making a cool army just to pick them from the table. That being said, the real problem (read lack of balance) is not fixed this way. On top of that the actual time spent per game will end up being roughly 50% longer. Then there are questions about things like melee between multiple units and so on.

          It’s a great mechanic for single model unit games like most skirmishes are, but 40k is just too…big?…for it to work…in my opinion. I’ve not tested it so I can not say for sure.

      • davepak

        There are other ways to fix deathstars – the recent faq’s are a great start.

        • Shiwan8

          Sure. There are. They are not fixed now though so there is no reason to assume that they would be when considering other rules.

  • Jason Anderson

    Malifaux uses a deck of cards. For a skirmish system it is actually fantastic allows mitigating a bit of luck and feel really tight and tactical.

    People will hate me for saying it but I have really come to like the AoS style to hit/to wound system based on the weapon not the defender…

    • Admiral Raptor

      I’ve come around to the AoS system as well. the rules are fast and easy, two things that go very well together. Now if they could just fix up the fluff a bit…

      • Shiwan8

        Now if they could just make it a game about skill instead of game about disposable income.

        • Admiral Raptor

          Yeah, that as well. I’m holding out hope that the forthcoming Generals compendium will do a lot to make it more of a proper game.

          • Shiwan8

            Hope so.

  • Satyan Patel

    We stick to D6, but use Onepage40k free rules. Fast, easy and furious. And for some reason balanced and free to download and use. Yes from OnePageAnon site. Try them.

  • Tomorrow’s War, anyone?

  • stinkoman

    Remember 2nd ED?

  • Nostok

    I recently listened to a Rick Priestly interview on the D6Generation and he basically said the reasons they used D6 in GW was that they were readily available and far far cheaper to include in starter sets than other polyhedral dice.