40K: Sector Mechanicus Rules Too Much?

The new Sector Mechanicus Kits from GW are fantastic – but did we really need it to be so “Volatile” as cover?

Turns out having a fire-fight among Industrial equipment is pretty dangerous. I don’t know if you’ve seen the rules for the upcoming Sector Mechanicus Terrain from Games Workshop but they have a theme beyond their awesome modular abilities: They go boom.

Every piece of the terrain has a special rule – well, a pair of them really. The first is Aegis of the Omnissiah which basically lets you re-roll cover saves of 1 for models within 1″ – this seems fine. I’d hate to shoot at scouts in this cover, but that’s not the point. The second rule that goes with each is some variation of “Volatile Cover” which is bad-times. These results range from causing the unit d3 strength 6 AP3 hits when you roll a 6, to just randomly spewing deadly hits at the start of every game turn on a roll of a 1.

Those random terrain attacks can range from an annoying D6 Str 5 AP4 attack over to a serious D3 Strength 8 AP2 hit(s). That’s to all units within 3″ of this the respective terrain. That’s a bit much…

rules images via Scanner (facebook) 4-12-2017

 

Look, I like having fun rules that fit the lore and yes, fighting a war in a factory should be inherently dangerous. But I’m not a fan of these rules for two reasons:

  1. They slow the game down – it’s just one more set of rolls that both players will need to remember to do. And if they do trigger, that’s a whole other set of damage dice that could possibly trigger break checks and other random stuff. Does Power-through-pain trigger? How about Strength From Death? If it drops my mob of boyz below 12, do they suddenly take a break check and run off the table? (I’m pretty the answer is yes to all of these things.)
  2. They are all named Volatile Cover as the special rule.

Let me harp on that one for a moment. I was half joking about point number one, but this really bothers me. You should have a different special rule named something different for 3 different things. Especially when they all do 3 different things!

Sure, it’s just semantics, but if you were cross-referencing the rules and looked up “Volatile Cover” and you accidentally read the wrong one and it cost you/wins you the game, who’s fault is that? Is it your fault for poor reading comprehension? Is it your opponent’s fault for not catching it? Or is it the rule’s fault for having a name that’s too close to another rule? I’ll let you decide.

Regardless – this terrain is serious fun to assemble.

Personally, I’m going to be playing with all these terrain pieces – a lot! I love how they look. But I’m going to treat them as JUST ruins and talk to my opponent about it BEFORE we play. I want to be on the same page as them and if they want to remember the rules and use them, sure… we can work that out. I just think that sometimes these extra rules are just overkill.

 

How do you feel about these extra terrain rules? Are you Gung-ho for the random booms or would you prefer a simplified option?

  • LeroyJenkinss

    Or you could just ignore the rules and use them as normal cover….

    Guess it’s more fun to complain!

    • Hrudian

      “Personally, I’m going to be playing with all these terrain pieces – a lot! I love how they look. But I’m going to treat them as JUST ruins and talk to my opponent about it BEFORE we play. I want to be on the same page as them and if they want to remember the rules and use them, sure… we can work that out. I just think that sometimes these extra rules are just overkill.”

      – Adam Harry, 13/04/2017

      you’re welcome.

      • ZeeLobby

        This is BoLS. I’d be shocked if half the commentators, myself included, even know how to read :P.

        • Walter Vining

          words are hard

      • Stormcaller

        You mean I’m supposed to read the entire article?! It’s much more enjoyable taking things out of context…

    • Sean A.

      Hush now, dont you try an instill logic into this!

      • ZeeLobby

        And here’s the commentators joining the hating on hater bandwagon without reading the article as well. 😀

    • Jason Bingham

      Well it is BoLS, so the sky is falling. God forbid we discuss terrain with our opponents

      • ZeeLobby

        And here’s the commentators joining the hating on hater bandwagon without reading the article as well!

    • Zingbaby

      The rules aren’t even that bad. It’s just the community is asking for LESS complication not more… but yeah and the author said it too, just use them as ruins.

      • Old zogwort

        Sure its less rules they want… This is why all the eldar players hate the new ynari rules.

  • orionburn

    For special missions/scenarios it could be fun for a twist. Makes you rethink holding an objective if a marker is on it, and the rules could make things interesting in a game of Armageddon. My gripe is that I wish they would have made the S & AP the same for all them. That way it would have made it as little easier to keep track of. Assuming we get special rules for the other 2 pieces of terrain coming out that’s now 5 sets of rules just for terrain.

    Nobody is holding a gun to your head to use the rules. It’s terrain. Not a fortification. I imagine the majority of people (myself included) are going to ignore the rules 90% of the time.

    • Shawn

      Which is a shame because the do add a n element of realism in a war ravaged city. The author just reinforces my belief that the majority of the community don’t want any extra rules, unless it’s to make their faction better than anyone else.

      • Walter Vining

        the community don’t want any extra rules, unless it’s to make their faction better than anyone else.
        ^this, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, this this

  • Commissar Molotov

    “Hey, kids! Here’s some really great cover with rules than ensure you’ll do everything in your power to keep your models from actually USING it!”

    • ZeeLobby

      I still think they have a dartboard wall of zainy whacky rules!

    • Old zogwort

      Can you imagine the rage these things would induce if they did not have the volatile rule and just the re roll 1’s on cover saves.

  • Amber Sbriglio

    “But I’m going to treat them as JUST ruins and talk to my opponent about it BEFORE we play.” THIS. This is why I will not be buying any of these till I square away with my playgroup how unfun the rules all sound.

    When was the last time you saw a Super Smash Bros. Melee tournament at Evo with items turned on? When was the last sanctioned MTG tournament that used Planeschase? The answer is never, because having random hazards interfering with both players does not make for a good show of skill.

    • Shawn

      For a tournament no, but everyone doesn’t play tournaments do they? Some of them do in fact like narrative play, and these extra rules do that.

      • Walter Vining

        ^this, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, thisthis, this

  • Crablezworth

    Yeah I’m sure gw will fix all the stupid crap for 8th….

    • Hell-Nico

      By removing ALL the rules and leave the game with 2 pages like AOS !

  • vyrago

    40k has a problem with its ruleset? when did this happen?????

  • david

    Forget the rules! according to Warhammer tv shown today we are getting MORE SCENERY!

    • Dan Wilson

      3 out of the 4 sprues for the magnavent are all walkways, so I imagine they’ll be releasing a walkways kit, maybe for 35quid or something, I really hope so because the more walkways the better.

  • Adrien Fowl

    You can always agree with your oponent not to use those rules. Sometimes, when I play Age of Sigmar with my friends, we just agree not to use the special rules of scenery to speed things up. Some other times we do use them; in the end, it’s up to the players.

  • J Mad

    They dont slow the game down as much as you think… “Oh may we have to roll a few extra dice 2-3 more than normal”

    These rules are also fluffy, you can use them as normal terrain, or for fun (B.c you know the game is about fun) keep the rules, if you find these rules are not fun… then dont use the rules.

    Anyways, its rules like this that could help some armies against turn 1-2 shooting. IG, Orcs, nids etc.. might have a better chance to get a hoard closer with cover and re-rolling cover. Not saying in a competitive scene it will but in a friendly semi-comp it could.

  • david

    The next question is what has the containers got in common with the sector set?

  • Graham Bartram

    Fighting on a terrain that would unavoidably all provide some cover, like a forgeworld, means that to create variation we need some extra rules. To have some areas of the battlefield that are dangerous but have a bit of extra cover is fine. Players have the choice on a normal battlefield to use ruins or woods etc. and they get extra cover at the cost of movement. Well in this high cover industrial terrain extra cover costs extra risk. I don’t have a problem with it at all.