40K: GW Drops The Nerf Bat On Flyers

Well that was fast – Games Workshop has addressed an issue with Flyers for Matched Play in record time! RIP Ravenspam, we barely knew ye!

This weekend we saw Games Workshop drop an updated FAQ for Warhammer 40,000 less than a week after the ATC showcased some key units in the developing meta. Stormravens* – and lots of them – seemed to be a fairly commanding option in the meta. After taking a closer look at the lists, it’s easy to see why a single model that is tough, mobile, and can generate 40+ shots a turn (capable of killing both vehicles and infantry) would be so popular to spam. Unfortunately, it appears that the ATC might have highlighted the problem a bit too brightly as GW has taken note and dropped the Nerf Bat on Flyers pretty hard.

The Change: Sudden Death

via Games Workshop FAQ

Page 215 – Sudden Death
Change point 2 to read:
‘If at the end of any turn after the first battle round, one player has no models on the battle field, the game ends immediately and their opponent automatically wins a crushing victory. When determining if a player has any units on the battle field, do not include any units with the Flyer Battlefield Role – these units cannot operate within a combat airspace indefinitely and they cannot hold territory without ground support. Furthermore, do not include any units with the Fortification Battlefield Role unless they have a unit embarked inside – even the most formidable bastion requires a garrison if it is to pose a threat.’

So for those of you keeping track at home this change is has a direct impact on Matched Play games, specifically. According to Games Workshop:

“Flyers have also been adjusted in light of some feedback from your matched play games. The design team want Warhammer 40,000 to be as fun as possible for as many players as possible, but we’ve noticed that a couple of army lists and certain units were crowding out other options. Now you’ll need to have feet on the ground (or tentacles, hooves, claws, or tracks) to win your games. Flyers are just as powerful as they were before, but now players are encouraged to take more diverse and unusual armies.”

One other thing to note is that change only effects units that are either Battlefield Role Fortifications or Flyer:

Fortification Battlefield Role:

Flyer Battlefield Role:


Now, that doesn’t mean Stormravens aren’t worth taking. As mentioned above, they are still fairly points efficient for what they can do on the tabletop. And it’s not like the Keyword Imperium Armies are lacking in access to lots of cheap troop choices to stay on the battlefield and “hold the fort” so to speak.

We’re not dead yet!

If anything this change might just accomplish the goal – which is to push players in to taking “more diverse and unusual armies.” So instead of seeing 5-6 Stormravens across the table, you might only see 3. How much of an impact will those 3 Stormravens be on the board? Will that be enough to tip games in their favor anyways? Well that’s part of the balancing act that is game design.

The Future of the 40k Meta

One of the important things that this change is showcasing is the fact that GW is actually keeping an eye on the “meta” of 40k and isn’t afraid to make tweaks as needed. If you’ve been around the game for any number of editions you’ll know that this is a monumental shift in the way Games Workshop has done things in the past. This is a sign of things to come from the design team – as these issues crop up they are no longer afraid to take the Neft bat out and swing away at the problem.

“What does that means for the “Meta” and the Tournament scene” – that is the question! Will Tournaments benefit from having a more active and engaged GW? Or will players start to feel like they can’t “play the game how they want to play it” and start to feel more and more constrained by GW? If you follow competitive E-Sports, you’ve probably seen this exact same development happen: Players find/create a dominant strategy, developers nerf/remove/tweak the dominant strategy so that it doesn’t work, players complain, players move on to the next dominant strategy. The “Meta Game Cycle” continues.

One of the big differences is that in the tabletop world, players invest hundreds of dollars and LOTs of hours into planning, building, painting, and playing with their armies. When it comes to that “players complain” step if GW pushes the player base too much they could have a situation like Warhammer Fantasy End-times all over again. Nobody wants that.


So what do you think about this change? What about the fact that GW actually responded to the “issue” this rapidly? Let us know in the comments below!

*Note: Stormraven Spam wasn’t the only Flyer that was being spammed – but it was kind of the poster boy army due to the fact that the winning team ran 2 Stormraven-heavy lists.
  • SilentPony

    Aww but I thought spam lists were totally legit and not about using exploits and oversights to win!

    • Zingbaby


      “If you’ve ever been to a tournament it’s only 1 or 2 people with lists like that!” <— ok ST*U, this IS exactly why we can't have nice things.

      The "competitive" scene has never been about 'competition' it's been about building uber hand-cap lists with exploits and oversights to auto-win.

      • Well… thats just it my friend. The competition isn’t about playing the game itself. The competition is about building the most mathematically efficient list and winning in the list-phase. Thats where the competition lies.

        • Keaton

          I like the fact that you play part of the game before it starts. Strategy meeting tactics, that’s a positive.

          • Zingbaby

            It’s not a positive when the entire game is “played” (and won) before the actual game.

          • Keaton

            Well, yeah. Obviously.

          • The problem and disconnect for a lot of people is that

            A) the strategy is unhinged and very easy to exploit

            B) the list building phase dominates the game to the point where playing the game doesn’t matter in many cases. You’ll already know who wins before the game begins.

          • Keaton

            If the list is 3 Imperial Knights and 3 Storm Ravens, okay sure. That person is a piece of garbage. But if the list isn’t cheesy garbage, so what? People should be rewarded for taking the time to tinker with their lists and

          • Keaton

            (stupid fat fingers)…and find something that works. And if the guy who just threw together the models he has gets beat handily, well. Thems the breaks.

          • Its the disconnect that points are supposed to be some kind of balancing mechanism. And they really aren’t. So long as people assume points are supposed to balance things, and listbuilding is as heavy handed as it is making 2000 points count as 5000 points, there will be a lot of people turned off by that.

            At its core, 40k is basically magic: the gathering only with expensive plastic models.

          • Keaton

            Points are absolutely a balancing mechanism. They’re not the only balancing mechanism, and they’re not perfect, but they generally do what they’re supposed to do fairly well.

          • Yes as “a balancing mechanism” they are that. They are to balance what the horse and buggy is to transportation these days though in a GW game.

            List building is the primary means of winning a 40k game. Playing the game is tertiary.

            If I’m bringing in 2000 points and you bring in 2000 points, I expect us to have a good game. If I bring a 2000 point Death Guard army with some cultists, some plague marines, a couple tanks, and a couple heavy weapons squads… all of which is a well rounded force, I’m totally going to be teabagged if you brought in the storm raven spam (for example).

            Thats not a fun game. Or balanced by any stretch of the imagination. But we thought 2000 v 2000 was supposed to be a close game. Because points. When in actuality the game was won the moment the player that brought 6 stormravens (pre faq) decided to bring six storm ravens and the dumb player that needed to learn how to git gud brought a well rounded force that had a little bit of everything.

            Take 90% of the GW model line and burn it if you want to have a good game. Thats the problem.

          • Keaton

            That’s bogus. You need to cite more examples than storm raven spam to support a claim that 90% of all codexes are garbage. Yes, if that happened, it probably would have ended badly. Guilliman is woefully overpowered. Other than that, I’m not exactly sure what these lists are that completely negate a well balanced, well thought out list.

          • The ETC and ATC have recently posted their lists or a lot of them. You’ll note that most of the lists are the same or roughly the same composition of a handful of builds.

            A well balanced list up against a tournament list will be destroyed barring really bad luck or a really really bad player.

            When I was powergaming from the 90s until the late 2000s, any balanced list that I came across was destroyed. Its a very rare occurrence to see a well balanced list do well against a tournament list in my experience.

            So long as people are bringing things like storm raven spam and other BOLS tournament spam lists to the casual games at stores, the vast majority of your builds are negated.

            Of course the simple answer is to not play against those people, and to an extent I agree with that. However… it shouldn’t be that way.

          • Keaton

            Well I agree with that. That has always been a problem. I always thought game modes would be a good idea, with tiered restrictions like MtG does. Vintage for the tournament crowd. Legacy for the competitive but still reasonable. Modern for even more restrictions. GW seems to have been encouraging since 6th that tournament organizers and players place their own limits on their games, but the community hasn’t seemed to really stepped up to the plate.

          • happy_inquisitor

            ETC and ATC are team format tournaments – the most cheesy environment imaginable. It does not even relate very well to normal tournament play as the way the pairings are done totally encourages a game of rock-paper-scissors.

            You either like the team tournament scene or you look on in bewilderment at its craziness.

          • Dennis J. Pechavar

            I’ve been romper stomped more than a few times by a tournie list that I was sold as a “fun” list to play against. I prefer balanced but competitive lists but spam in any form can be boring.

          • lemt

            To be fair, I’d choose “expensive plastic models” over “expensive cardboard pieces” any time of the week.

          • Jabberwokk

            “Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win.” – Sun Tzu

          • Grasshopper

            Oh, that made me laugh. *wipes tear away*

          • Dennis J. Pechavar

            But if I use my slide ruler I can totally use math to win!

          • Jeremy Larson

            Victorious warriors win first and then go to war, while defeated warriors go to war first and then seek to win. – Sun Tzu

          • Hugo Rousseau

            The thing is that the list part isnt an actual competition, no one craft a list. everyone just copy the most officient list that has been posted online. So the fact that this part matter is bad since no one actually gives any effort, thinking or skills to this.

          • 6Cobra

            That’s simply not true. Although competitive list building and play are un-fun to me personally, I know several ultra competitive 40K players who each spend hours puzzling, calculating, and honing lists between each gaming session. One in particular, I’ve sat there and watched him literally sweating he’s thinking and calculating so hard on his list building. Huge smile on his face. For many people, the math/listbuilding part of the game is EXTREMELY fun. I’ve heard it described as similar to the enjoyment in building a robot – the fun part is building it.. watching it move around and do what you designed it to do is just an ancillary benefit.

          • Keaton

            That’s definitely not what “everyone” does.

          • Josh Watkins

            See there is a difference between “victorious warriors win first …” and “The player with the largest disposable income or book written by P. Kelly or M. Wards damn near auto wins.” Simply finding out what 2++ death star or specific weapon to spam in a book takes very little to no skill at all where as games like Infinity and Warma/Hordes requires a much greater stratagem based on unit placement and synergy. Sorry but it doesn’t matter how hard you try to craft an Ork or Nid or successor chapter list if your opponent has access to “point and remove” types of fire power or “can save Vs 1000+ wounds” models or powers then no amount of “tactics” you pour into a list will ever suffice.

    • nss

      Spam or anything else allowed under the rules is legit. It is GAMES WORKSHOP’s responsibility to write rules that don’t validate spam, deathstars, absurd formations, etc. Guess which group tends to get most upset when GW shirks that responsibility? People who want to make the hardest list possible. If the path to making an ultra hard list is filling it with mixed elements that support each other and have to be played correctly and with thought and consideration, then players who are out to maximize their list potential have an interesting puzzle to learn and master, and have options to pick apart and out play opposing lists.

      • SilentPony

        So you’re saying the people MOST upset about 2+/2++/2+ FNP rerollable, with Eternal Warrior lists were the people playing them?!
        Yeah, that’s some hot garbage. If tournament players are really so upset at exploitative tournament lists, and they all truly hate GW for their oversight, then why do they all bring them?
        Isn’t that kinda like ordering a hundred burgers from McDonald’s, and then complaining that McDonalds should have stopped you, and also you never really liked burgers to begin with, and everything it always everyone else’s fault!

        • Korvalus

          There is a little grain of truth in that. The tourney players can and WILL complain of cheese in the armies, loudly.
          The cheese in the armies that THEY individually don’t own, obviously… They’re not going to throw stones on their own roof and lose their uber-combo!

        • Koonitz

          That’s a bit of a bad example, though.

          More accurately would be “I’ve trained to be a skilled, top-tier street fighter. I have signed up for, and plan to attend a street fighting tournament in three months. Uh oh, I just found out that all of the other top-tier fighters are using performance enhancing steroids, because there are no regulations in this street fighting league saying steroids are banned. Now, I have to decide whether I want to not go, or take steroids, myself, to compete.”

          Of course, some did choose to bow out. Some chose to enhance their list with StormSteroids so they could compete.

          They didn’t like it, they complained loudly about how stupid it was, but they sure as hell did it, anyway, because it was the only way they felt they had a chance at winning within the established rules and restrictions of the tournament.

          Whether they’re the MOST affected, I feel it is hard to say, but they ARE the most likely to face such ‘unbalanced’ lists, so their arguments are valid, if not the MOST valid.

          • SilentPony

            So they wanted to compete fairly against like minded people. Got to the tournament, saw everyone else was on performance enhancing drugs, and instead of realizing that this isn’t the place for them, simply shrugged their shoulders and started doing drugs themselves, ’cause hey, they wanted to compete against like minded people and all the kewl kids were doing it, and they just wanted to fit in?

            So where’s the innocence?

          • Koonitz

            They made a choice. A choice that is in no way illegal in the country they reside in, or within the rules of the tournament they chose to attend.

            They have every right to complain about whatever they want. It may seem to be a bit hypocritical to complain about something while performing the very action they complain about, but no one can deny the validity of their experience and insight.

            Something you would be a fool to ignore.

          • Angus MacKenzie

            No no…that doesn’t seem hypocritical. That is actually the definition of ‘hypocritical’. People complaining about the unfairness and misery caused by actions that they voluntarily engage in is a literal, textbook example of hypocrisy. Those people are hypocrites by definition.

            No one playing 40k is forced to play in any given way. If they want to win, and they can’t win without playing in a manner that they despise and hate, then they have a choice to make. They can choose to not to play in that manner and deemphasize their desire to win. Its not that hard; shift your expectations. They can choose to play to win even though they hate and despise that style of play. If they complain about that, then they are hypocrites. Or they can simply not play at all since they game does not meet their expectations. Go find something else more enjoyable to do.

            And let’s be clear about one more thing. GW does NOT owe this game to anyone. A player chooses to pay for this game as advertised. If they are not satisfied and the game is not what they expected then either GW grossly lied to them about the game and its content, in which case take them court..or the person lied to themselves about the game’s content, or chose to remain ignorant of it. In either of the latter two cases, they (the player) are completely at fault.

            To put it another way, nearly all the whining about 40k results from players wanting to play checkers when GW designed chess. If that pisses someone off, they have no one to blame but themselves for their own unrealistic expectations. One more time, GW does not owe it to the tournament community to make the game match their expectations.

  • Frank Krifka

    GW: We’ve taken a lot of effort to give you guys a balanced game. Here you go.

    Players: HAHA! NOT balanced! look at this ridiculous flyer spam list we came up with.

    GW: fine. *nerf bat*

    Players: NOOOOOOO!!! Why?! Fine… I’ll see if I can find another way to break this game.

    GW: This is why you can’t have nice things.

    • Charon

      GW: We have playtested this edition in and out, there are no OP or UP choices every unit is viable and has its place.

      Player: You sure? This Flyer for just a few points dishes out 44 shots a turn and these troops cost 2 points per unit and spot a 4++… i mean this could lead to…


      • Zingbaby

        BOLS and FLG were also on the “Everything is Awesome!” train…

        Funny how hiring the very guys that encourage and promote totally broken exploit lists – to help “balance” the game – didn’t work out.

        • ZeeLobby

          LoL, too true.

        • Goatsplitter

          Sigh, there is one thing about 40k culture (at least 40k talking-head culture) that grates on my last nerve. When a unit/model/strat is absolutely broken, they always let out a breath of awe, and say something like “ooohhh… …that’s really good.” Like it was some accomplishment when GW poorly chose the numbers or words in a rule book. Idiots– what you see is a mistake or poor planning, not American Pharaoh taking the triple crown.

      • Frank Krifka

        I was wondering if it would be you or Karuu who came out of the woodwork to miss the point first.

        Guess that answers that question.

        • Charon

          Ther is no point as your first sentence is already dead wrong.

          “We’ve taken a lot of effort to give you guys a balanced game. ”

          It is not balanced at all (like every edition so far). And if this was really “a lot of effort” for a multi million GBP company while they still fail to spot extremely obvious outliers (I mean come on! Brimstones, conscripts and Razorwing flocks have been spotted and dicussed before the indices were officially released by people who are not paid game designers)

          I would totally agree your point if it was indeed a balnced and throughly tested game and they actually fixed a loophole that was hard to spot.
          But neither of the cases was a loophole or hard to spot. It was dead obvious even before day 1.

          • Frank Krifka

            See above.

          • Agent of Change

            Rapid Iteration and Incremental change.

            I’ll grant you GW’s balance testing usually seems like it was done by drunken chimpanzees but you cannot deny this new approach of actually addressing problems at all is novel for GW.

            It is my hope that they are goign to apply the above concepts (y’know THE core concepts of good game balance development) going forward using the global player bases feedback as large data point references to make changes.

            I know, I know, they should have tested prior, etc… but here’s the thing even a stripped down 40k is still a massive unwieldy beast of interacting systems and corner cases. I don’t like it but the fact is they could never test all of it to get even a fraction of the data that they just got from this last tournament and the Internets reaction to it. So WE live in a world of perpetual in development video games… it’s not surprising to see tabletop shift in that direction too. If they stick with it, it could be a very good thing.

          • euansmith

            As Helmuth Karl Bernhard Graf von Moltke said, “No set of rules survives contact with the meta.”

          • Dennis J. Pechavar

            I want to thank you again for loaning me your copy of his works. Truly insightful work.

          • pad_uk

            LOL. I like that. Consider it stolen. 😉

          • Charon

            Im not talking about any hidden problems. Sure they will come up at one time but that is ok. They could not have seen them without testing a stupid amount of combinations.
            But issues that are plainly visible to lots of players day 1?
            While I appreciate the new reaction time, it is still heavy handed. The core issue is not flyer spam. Playing 5 Hellturkeys or Croissants or next to every other flyer is no issue at all.
            The Stormraven is the issue. It is too cheap and has too much firepower. No matter if you play one of them or 5.
            It is just better visible that this thing is OP when spammed. But it is as broken in your narrative game if you take one as it is in a hardcore tourney game with 5.
            The Raven needs the nerf, not “flyers” in general.
            This change basically did nothing to the Raven at all and wont even stop him from beeing spammed.
            THAT is the problem in their approach.

            They see the symptom but dont dig for the source but just paint the measles with fleshtone so you do not worry about them anymore.

            Same with conscript, razorwing flock and brimstone spam. All 3 were a ting and brimstones and conscripts were actually played a lot (bot have cheap plastic minis). Result? Razorwing flocks doubled up in price whicle the 2 point abominations with the 4++ still happily spam smite 😀

          • Agent of Change

            I see where you are coming from and you are not wrong. But from the cheap seats looking at this with a designers eye looking for balance, these (the things you mention) are all changes that appear to be necessary to us.

            What I see in this change is an immediate, and reasoned change to adjust a general gameplay concept that also happens to address the Raven Swarm in a way that makes the lists just seen at serious competitive risk if they don’t change. It almost certainly doesn’t mean they are done making changes, but it makes sense to see the effects of a change before implementing an additional change to address the same issue to avoid swinging the pendulum too far, i.e. Rapid Iteration and Incremental change.

            The other thing i suspect is that until something (like raven swarm) dominates the meta in a way that causes outrage at a major tournament any points adjustments will etc… will be held for teh next FAQ release. Here is why: All of the feedback from LGS’s, listhammer, theory hammer, and internet discussion is all functionally theory to GW. we can rant all about what we each think is a problem or seems broken but until something genuinely breaks the META at a tournament GW won’t feel teh need to react quickly, nor should they. Functionally tourney’s are “in public” and all other data points are for all that they can be verified essentially hearsay.

            My prediction is points adjustment and general tweaks in the faq updates and after any major tournament (for the next little bit) we’ll likely have something like this change that puts the smack on whatever rules abuse the clever bastards at the high level competitive scene are calling strategy.

            You can say it’s not a holistic fix, nor is it a complete fix, and you’d be right… but you can’t say it isn’t an attempt to address the issue, and we cannot know what teh full impact of the change will be honestly until the next tournament lists hit the table.

          • Angus MacKenzie

            Wow!! You mean the community spotted a few rules loopholes, errors, and typos soon after release?

            Its almost as if the GW completed 99% of the work, game design, play testing, publishing, and production without any major issues. Then the community managed to find the few remaining and inevitable errors with just thousands to millions of times as many people looking for them!

            Its almost as if the community has managed more playtest games in the last month than all the combined playtesting that GW could have possibly engaged in for the last 30 years.

            Its almost as if the community’s most persistent, angriest voices lean heavily towards the “I play 40k so I know all about game design, production, publishing, logistics, and business management” school of jackassery. You know, the one where they are better games designers than professional game designers because they play games.

            Its almost as if the community has bizarre and unrealistic expectations, demanding utter perfection; perfection defined as “whatever I want”.

            But of course none of this can be the case since clearly I’m the only one being hyperbolic (as they will no doubt, loudly proclaim). Their expectations and complaints are absolutely reasonable and completely justified…because of course they are.

          • Charon

            Again. Nothing of this is an “error”, “Loophole” or “typo”.
            Get your facts straight. There was people spamming conscripts with priests to make them fearless in 6th and 7th too. But nobody complained because conscripts were not good at all. Was this a typo, loophole or error?
            Now th same unit is extremely strong. And exactly the same list that gave your opponent a laugh in 6th/7th now makes you a dirty WAAC because GW decided to break the unit? Really?

            Most of these things were not spotted “in a month of global playtesting” but from reading the damn index the day it was out. You dont need multiple tries to figure out swimming in hydrochloric acid is a bad idea. You also don’t need to have a phd to figure out which unit is grossly undercosted for its performance.

      • OldHat

        “GW: We have playtested this edition in and out, there are no OP or UP choices every unit is viable and has its place.”

        Oh. where did they say that specifically? Also, no amount of playtesting can ever catch everything.

      • georgelabour

        Replace GW with PP and you have a conversation from a few months ago.

        Especially since they did in fact brag about how playtested it had been…

        But then PP has been trying to be GW JR. for quite a while now so I guess it’s okay.

    • ZeeLobby

      No, this is what the normal process should have been for years, lol. Before it was:

      GW: “LA LA LA LA LA LA LA” *fingers in ears*

      It’s a mistake to assume that none of the fault in the competitive community has grown from GW’s unwillingness to do anything in the past.

      • Frank Krifka

        God. So true.

        • ZeeLobby

          Yeah. Well it looks like GW may have finally learned this. It’ll be a solid game when GW shuts all this stuff down. Hopefully those players who just seek to abuse will head elsewhere.

          • Frank Krifka

            They may go play other games, but you know they’ll still be here to complain about this one…

          • ZeeLobby

            I mean I’ve basically done the same but complain about stuff like this. If it’s fixed I’ll be coming back to stay

          • Agent of Change

            Walk softly, we are legion. 😉

          • Angus MacKenzie

            As a fan of AoS from day, and someone who tried to play WHFB for years with no real hope of enjoyment, cutting free that infected mass of seething, arrogant, miserable, entitlement that was a large chunk of the WHFB competitive community was the best thing they could’ve (and in my opinion have ever) done! President Drumpf could learn a lot about draining toxic swamps from that move. Quick, painful, but effective.

          • ZeeLobby

            I just think they went too far. I liked a lot of the mechanics and uniqueness of WHFB. Ranked combat gave it that extra thought that differentiated it from 40K for me. With that gone I feel little need to play both.

            It also killed our local fantasy community. I mean regardless of whether you were a fan of the fluff or game, they gutted all of it. Our whole community, which never did competitive events, pretty much died and never resurfaced , even with the generals handbook. I can’t help but see AoS as only a disappointment :/.

      • Sparowl

        Except for Matt Ward, who, when asked about how OP Daemons were in Fantasy, laughed and said “well, it would be a shame if they weren’t”

        Which pretty much shows you GW in a nutshell – “balance” isn’t their concern. “Cool” (from their perspective) is, and that’s why their games have been radically unbalanced for so long.

        • Frank Krifka

          Matt Ward was pretty much the embodiment of mid-guard (as opposed to “old-guard”) GW. When they were a model company and not a game company… or something.

          I do see a number of GW’s recent approaches to the game coming from a very different place.

      • Just a player

        I really don’t like this at all. Notice that it isn’t the majority of the players who asked for this, its BOLS etc who hyped this to the max, and some cut throat tournament players. Just look back at the older articles. They where full with, no this is not a thing please leave us regular players alone comments. Yes it needed a fix but no it didn’t need this fix. It wasn’t flyers that where bad its Stormravens.
        I was going for a casual flyer / infantry list involving Arvus lighters etc that transported all my infantry squads, and just finished painting 20% of the army. I like the idea of a syfi battle actually involving getting on the planet with space shuttles. However thx to sites like these my army is nearly invalidated before I have even finished painting them. Core rules like these should not change faster than you can finished painting your models
        Pls BOLS be more cautious in whipping up the angry mobs for your articles are a real force now. 🙁

        • defensive

          You can still run your shuttle list no problem. As long as you have boots on the ground by the end of turn 2, then you’re fine. All this does it stop armies made up completely of fliers.

          And it’s tournament players asking for this, because the nerf only really affects these tournament built lists. No one in a casual game is going to be min-maxing hard enough for it to matter.

          • Just a player

            I might be reading the rules wrong. Why does this only trigger at the end of turn 2 and not at turn 1 or the end of each player turn ?

          • defensive

            I skimmed past it at first too, but the first line of the reworded rule says “‘If at the end of any turn after the first battle round, one
            player has no models on the battlefield, the game ends”

            So if you are dropping guys off, it’ll be perfectly fine.

  • Luca Lacchini

    I’ve come to the conclusion that the tourney scene doesn’t have any direct impact on the games I play, so I won’t give it any more attention.
    3 Stormravens with 3 scout squads and Roboute, the hell is that.

    Let’s just hope that the nerfs/adjustments GW makes to limit the silliness of it doesn’t spill out with illogical rules, point costs, etc.

    • Zingbaby

      For most of us the tourney scene has no impact – apart from the nerfs/changes/limitations we all have to deal with because of some WAACturd.

    • The tourney scene is directly mirrored in my casual / FLGS environment, so everytime a bols article goes out highlighting tournament spam, I know I will get to get on my knees and take it down my throat. As such, I’m glad that they are proactively at least making attempts at removing the most heinous spam combos.

      • Xodis

        That was a very detailed description you made there lol

        • Frank Krifka

          Yeah. I really feel for the guy.

        • Imagery is everything 😉

        • JoBane


      • Dennis J. Pechavar

        So you want a game? 😉

    • Dragon2928

      Agreed. I was really afraid they were going to jack up the price of Stormravens, which would have messed up the “normal” games that I play. I like the fix they implemented.

      • Zingbaby

        They probably will still nerf Stormravens because these WAACturds are just going to put a cheap min-max unit inside them and keep doing exactly what they’re doing now…

        • Koonitz

          Remember that units inside transports are removed from the battlefield. This is why auras don’t work while embarked.

          It will also likely not count for being on the board for victory conditions. Though this may need clarification. As I read it, however, they don’t count, and you will still lose if your entire army is embarked on flyers.

        • Shawn Pero

          Doesn’t matter. If that unit’s not physically on the table by turn 2 they still lose. And that cheap unit will get eaten, as most armies can take care of things like that with no trouble.

        • happy_inquisitor

          If they keep the power level the same does it affect anybody but the tournament players anyway? It should not.

          I actually think that models which work better when spammed (typically outliers from the normal in how you damage them) should have steeper points cost than power cost – because really if you want to spam junk to win a friendly power level game no rules designer can save you from yourself anyway 😉

  • Zingbaby

    You can always count on Aaron “TFG” Aelong and his ilk to spoil the game for everyone else.

    Some will blame ‘fluff bunnies’ though, in 3… 2… 1…

    • KingAceNumber1

      It’s all the fault of the fluff bunnies.

      • memitchell

        F’n Fluff Bunnies. Ruining it for WAAC Rabbits.

    • orionburn

      Muh meta!!!

    • ZeeLobby

      The nastiest people have always been self-proclaimed “fluff bunnies” who power game beat their friends into the dirt “fluffily”. I’ve seen way more of these than anything else.

      • Zingbaby

        What a rich fantasy world you must live in.

        • ZeeLobby

          ,Seen it at many events up and down the east coast. Guess it’s all just slipping into the void.

  • Agent of Change

    This is hands down nothing but a positive move in my book. I’ll be honest I haven’t played 40k regularly or hardly at all since late 5th/early 6th. I’ve kept up on the rules, but 6th killed the game for me and my gaming friends in a lot of ways so I’ve mostly ‘window shopped’ the game half of the hobby. reading articles staying up ont eh trends and just being continually reminded through 6th and 7th of all the missteps, frustrating decisions, and almost deliberately anti-player choices in the game design and support front.

    8th started to sound like something different and for the first time in years i actually got a little excited at eh prospect of maybe Wanting to dust of the models and play the game. then they started making the rigth noises and doign the right thigns. Global update of all forces for the new edition… wow that was def needed, good job. Flexible design and a pledge to stay ointop of a “living ruleset” to include army lists… sounds good let’s see them foolw up.

    Then I see faq’s rolling out… i’m starting to buy it but this… This is confirmation to me the GW is committed in this moment to keepign their promises. Toxic metas destroyed the game for me because of fire and forget codex releases that didn’t seem to care about balance or relative power levels. If GW can watch the FIRST major meta develop at a tourney, and in the same time as it takes the community to discuss it release a rules change that doesn’t de-power any units but does address the major issue with that meta… then i may find myself playing this game again soon.

    To address the people complaining about wasted time/money on power builds when GW swats a clear meta down, (the e-sports model is a great example) then that’s the price of a living game. Honestly I don’t have much sympathy for folks who watch for whatever borderline rules abuse netlists show up to dominate the meta, buy that list and then run into a rules change. But then I’m not really interested in high level competition so I don’t much care about trying to push teh rules to teh breaking point for an advantage. To my mind you won’t waste a lot of money by not buying a bunch of models for whatever unit spam. The more varied your list is the less likely you’ll feel and spam affecting faq change.

  • Pcm979

    I doubt this will reach the levels seen in eSports. Constant rebalancing is easy for video games because the code update goes out for everyone. But in a game with physical rulebooks – because not everyone uses digital yet- that isn’t going to work. You’re either going to have to cart around and cross-reference all the FAQs or actually start gluing the replacement passages into your rulebook.

    The best solution is to get things right the first time around, but this is GW, better business practices or no.

    • Ronin

      I could imagine GW coming out with a Warhammer community or their own version of Kindle strictly for rulebooks and datasheets.

      • Pcm979

        Oh God I can see it now:
        “Introducing the Citadel™ brand War-Book Reader™, specially formulated for your gaming needs, and not just a re-branded Android tablet. It comes in a variety of proprietary colour schemes, including Abaddon Black™, Guilliman Blue™, Mephiston Red™, and Corax White™. Please note that as of January 01st 2018, no mobile phones or portable tablet devices other than the Citadel™ brand War-Book Reader™ will be able to read Games Workshop™ related digital files or be allowed to be used on the premises of official Games Workshop™ stores or in official Games Workshop™ related Events or Tournaments.”

        • euansmith

          Sure this device would be called a “Data Slate”? With a skull, with a bionic eye, molded in to the back. If not, I would want my money back.

          • Pcm979

            I admit, it’s not my best joke. I was trying to think of something that was as cringe-inducing as and that invoked the spectre of “Citadel War-Ter™”.

            As for your money back… Emps is getting his bony butt off the throne before that happens.

          • euansmith

            I think that you are on a hiding to nothing trying to top the creative people who brought us Aeioulfs and Dwaeiourfs.

          • Pcm979

            I’m honestly surprised that the faction for ordinary humans wasn’t called ‘the Aempire’.

          • georgelabour

            It sounds to much like vampire obviously.

            Now Sigpirates…oh wait Sid meyer’s pirates…

            Hrmm. Marrians? Nope, sounds like Martians or marines..

            Dang this naming stuff is hard. Let’s just call them Free Peoples of Uld Urth.

          • euansmith

            The are now, down on my gaming table!

            “For the Heldenhammer! For the Aempire!”

          • georgelabour

            Heck if they made a 40k themed tablet like that we all know we’d want one.

            Especially if the non-bionic eye blinked…

            And it puffed out incense and the occasional bit of imperial wisdom…

          • euansmith

            The incense defuser is a great idea; absolutely spot on.

          • General_Seedykay

            Not only is that EXACTLY how GW would do it, but now I really want it to happen because it would make our Dark Heresy games even more immersive (alongside the constant narrative contrivances towards drinks just so I can keep cracking out more IRL spirits for the players. Psychic phases get reeeeal blurry after the first hour.)

  • Keaton

    Are people seriously mad about this…? Is that what I’m reading?Why?

    • Zingbaby

      Honestly the fix is good, and smart and I think people are thankful for it… what is frustrating is that it is required in the first place.

      Still, guys like Aaron “TFG” Aelong will just fill the RavenSpam with a cheap min-max unit and keep doing what he’s doing though, until GW nerfs something else that effects all of us.

      • Keaton

        Every game in history, be it sports, esports, tabletop, etc is balanced around what the best (most competitive) players in the world are doing. It’s like a stress test companies put products through; they get their hands on a codex and try their damnedest to break it.

        Any change they make will likely be small and specifically targeting some stupid shenanigans and super unlikely to affect us, just like this one. I think the hand wringing is unwarranted.

        • It affects me because my casual store environment often mirrors BOLS tournament lists.

          • Keaton

            So it affects you positively?

          • Them changing the game affects me positively. Having to endure this type of garbage in casual games affects me negatively.

          • Keaton

            Yeah. I’m all for it. Remember what we would have given for an FAQ fix to the invisibility death star crap we dealt with for years? I’d have punched a baby.

          • Commissar Molotov

            And I would have held his tiny little arms behind his back while you did it.

          • Keaton

            I had a good, real belly laugh at this. His tiny body squirming trying to get free, eyes going wide as the punch approaches…

          • georgelabour

            And just how many games did you have to play against an all flyers list before this change?

          • I’m really not sure how that has anything to do with how I view faqs positively and the concept of having to face tournament power spam something I don’t want to do.

            How many times do you have to whack yourself in the balls with a hammer before you realize its not fun? How many times do you have to go out and find a hornet’s nest and punch it before you realize its not going to be a good time?

          • georgelabour

            Your words: “It affects me because my casual store environment often mirrors BOLS tournament lists.”

            SO if you’ve not been facing these kinds of lists before then you haven’t actually been affected. And since these kinds of lists are now altered to be less effective you likely won’t be facing them.

            By your reply there you’ve also just admitted to not having faced the very thing you were fretting over. You’re just upset over the fact that you maybe sort of could have ‘had’ to play against such a thing if the stars had been right….

            In effect your complaint is that because you might go and whack yourself in the balls this then proves that hammers are to dangerous for people to have. Even though the people making the hammers have now said not to hit yourself there.

          • Ah I see you’re here to pick a fight. Yes … my casual environment is filled with lists like this. Yes… if I want to play 40k in a public game, I’d have to play this type of list. Yes… I’m glad that GW seems to be on top of removing such lists from the game because they won’t be OP busted.

          • georgelabour

            Welp then good news. We can both agree that you’ll not have to hit yourself in the balls over this anytime soon. Unless you wish to continue to do so in a theoretical fashion for argument’s sake.

            Praise be unto GW. Savior of your happiness

          • Adorable.

          • georgelabour

            My chubby cheekiness is infamous throughout many a locale.

            And quite pinchable according to my grandmother.

          • Drpx

            Doesn’t sound like much of a casual environment then.

          • Casual environment to me means not in a tournament hall.

        • Zingbaby

          WH40K cannot and never could be compared to sports and that’s going back to 1st edition. It’s always, always been narrative driven to varying degrees, despite some people trying to play ‘serious toys’.

          The new GW is the bomb, this quick fix is unprecedented. Historically though — when WAACturds create broken exploits it makes its way into every smaller scene and simply ruins the game, and that lasts for as long as the next exploit to come along and counter it.

          Now fortunately GW is stepping up… those of us that have been around for most or all of the editions are still weary.

          • Keaton

            That’s true. That’s why I really miss the old FOC sometimes. Maybe even force the troop choices to be maximized. I always loved the blend of the narrative with competitive; I want to win and I like tinkering with my list, but not if it means I have 3 baby carriers and some wraithknights.

            The community can help with that though. Be sure to berate the next WAAC scum you see, for the good of all.

          • Agent of Change

            Amen Brother, as I describe above, my weariness led to putting down actually playing the game for the better part of a decade. I despaired GW ever doing anything that might entice me back to their gameplay… and yet this is proving me wrong.

            The problem GW built in the competitive scene by never having ever done anything before was the expectation that you could wait for someone to come up with something strong and everyone else could copy that list (verbatim or with minor twists) and the top competitive tables always came down to the Miniatures game version of “who wore it better” or some competing flavors of Spam feasts. That was possible because unless a new Codex was released that had some form of power creep in it that disrupted your meta you could safely just build the hotness and have a viable list for a long while.

            I’m hoping that this is a signal that those times are gone, but it’s gonna get vile from competitive players for a while. Not with the tippy-top strategically creative types who have both the income and freedom to create teh things that set trends but with everyone underneath them on teh food chain who would prefer not to have to innovate. they are gonna get real mad when their previous strategy of buying the list that worked well in the last tournament doesn’t work in teh next because GW fixed whatever rule that list had abused. GW hopefully is prepared to weather this blow-back becasue in the long runt eh game will be better for everyone in the long run if they stick to this path.

    • euansmith

      I don’t think people are upset; with the exception of a few folk with a couple of surplus models.

      • Keaton

        Ebay is about to have a surplus haha

      • georgelabour

        Good. I’ve been needing some cheap storm ravens for a carcharodons list I’ve had on paper for years now…

        Now to just get through the other 20 projects sitting in physical boxes.

    • Dan

      Not so much mad at the swiftness but more mad at the global consequences of nerfing all fliers due to some rules abuse. There have been quite a few games where people have been tabled in my local club recently. Then there were a few more where there was just one unit left. Now that unit cannot be a flier because it also means you will be tabled. It adds to the polarity of the game; it actually makes it easier to table someone who plays fairly with fliers as a sensible strategy might be to concentrate Fire on all other units.

      • Agent of Change

        Oddly enough if the end result is the fliers that I *do* hypothetically put on the table live longer, and i get to use them more, because killing them doesn’t count towards tabling me… then I can live with that. I do some love me some planes and watching them get blowed up makes me sad.

        I think this has both positive and negative effects for teh casual player, but so overwhelmingly positive that the negatives are footnotes.

      • Keaton

        The change is good from a balance standpoint and from a fluff standpoint. They’re right, if everything before you is destroyed, a plane strafing isn’t going to change the outcome of the battle.

        And if everything in my army is destroyed except for my flier, I’m pretty damn sure I wasn’t going to win anyways.

      • Drpx

        8th is basically about tabling your opponent before he tables you now. GW nerfed saves and upped the killing potential of everything and things like this are the result.

        • happy_inquisitor

          Really? I must be playing a different game or something, with strange things like objectives and stuff.

          Although if both players bring a glass cannon alpha-strike list then I can see how someone getting tabled would be inevitable.

          • Drpx

            Or one person brings it.

  • Xodis

    HAHA Like Clockwork BoLS.

    • orionburn

      Well we need something to read inbetween the six thousand articles about the new sperce muhrines codex this week! 😛

  • Witch Beatrice

    is this nerf a bad thing NO its not. Applause for GW learnjng that speedy FAQs keeps people interested in the game and not having to worry about broken combos for years. *watches space marines get unique strategems based on multiple units combining fire.

  • Mike Butcher

    IMHO the WAAC list players are not the ones who spend 1000s of hours to build and paint their armies. Full Disclosure: I am a bit of a Fluff Bunny…

    • Zingbaby

      No you’re right – they buy “lists” and toss quick paint for tournament-ready or pay someone to do that, while the rest of us ‘collect’ armies and put love and sweat into them.

      • euansmith

        In his recent article about his first 8th Ed Tournament, Goatbay mentioned that his own army wasn’t fully painted. I found that kind of shocking. Especially when he then commented about enjoying playing against someone with a well painted army.

        • Zingbaby

          And to Goatboy’s credit, despite being a major spammer, he paints well and usually has nice looking stuff.

          • euansmith

            Indeed, that was what surprised me so much about his terrible confession. I really like his manic, graphic style of painting. If I was going to get tabled by his army, I would at least want to enjoy the work on his miniatures.

  • phobosftw

    MUHAHAHA, sweet justice!
    Now, if only they can make it illegal to use chapter tactics from the spaciest marines codex until every army has one I can actually stop pouting,for a while at least..

    • Keaton

      Hard mode, engaged!

    • Sharkey Tyberos

      I don’t think GW will need to step in tbh, players can work that out among themselves. I just plan to ask if the other person wants to play against my marines using the codex or index rules for them.

  • Sharkey Tyberos

    That was actually a good way of doing it. Kudos to GW for implementing it in a way that doesn’t punish casual players. I’ve not seen lists like tournament lists used at my flgs but judging by comments that’s not true for many players. It seems some people copy the tournament lists to win.

    Spam lists at tournaments are ok at least imo as the players at them tournaments seem largely ok with them. For causal players that level of spam and WAAC attitude just sucks the fun out.

  • Josh Felstead

    There is no other way to look at this blindingly fast correction by GW other than “this was an excellent decision”.

    They wrote rules for a unit, they assessed how broken this unit can be by reviewing a tournament (tournaments will never fail to show this sort of thing, obviously), and then they balanced it out CORRECTLY rather than nerfing it to oblivion.

    You can still take 3 or even 4 Stormravens and have a viable chance of winning, but there’s none of this spam bullsh*t that leaves games looking completely lacking in flavour. You wanna be that guy and spam air units? Be my guest, but you better bury your 3 barebones scout squads and commander under 5 miles of Ferrocrete.

    • Agent of Change

      Now i’m picturing, a horde of Orks looking up at 5 Storm Ravens then to the 15 scouts and a commander huddling in the bushes, then back at the fighters, then back at the Scouts… They turn and huddle mumbling amongst each other and then turn and charge the scouts with a resounding WAAAAGGH.

      Suck to be you Scouts.

  • Commissar Molotov

    Wow, that was quick. Some poor bastard is probably sitting in front of a table full of half-assembled Razorwings and Stormravens right now re-assessing his whole life.

    • CloakingDonkey

      hey maybe Razorwing Jetfighters will finally be back in stock in Europe 😛

    • Agent of Change

      Schadenfreude is a hell of a drug

    • Drpx

      More likely they’re just boxing it all back up for eBay. These people are basically distribution centers.

    • AircoolUK

      I know, hilarious. I mean, who buys six Stormravens anyway? No-one normal, that’s for sure.

      • Mira Bella

        GW does not approve your message.

  • ZeeLobby

    Mad props to GW on the speed of this fix. I hope they apply this to all shenanigans going forward. While I would have hoped for a better game out of the gate that we wouldn’t have to break to fix, I’m still glad they’re willing to fix.

    • GnomesForge

      You’ve changed man. it used to be about the music.

  • Carey_Mahoney

    So, now it’s possible to lose a game whilst still having five big, menacing flyers on the table. I get the point why they implemented this, but still, it just doesn’t feel right.

    • quaade

      It does, point to one war where fliers alone have held conqoured ground.

      • davepak

        Agreed – flyers can’t conquer anything – you need boots and tracks on the ground to take area.

        Also, one has to remember that a battlefield is what…slightly larger to a football field? That is trivial to a flyer, which operationally is not dedicated to such a postage stamp – especially not without ground units directing it.

      • ZeeLobby

        I think his point was that playing against 5 fliers is still a pretty whack game.

      • Carey_Mahoney

        “Oh no, despite having supreme firepower on the board, I can’t win the game because this is actually not a war game but merely Capture the Flag.”
        No, still feels wrong.

    • Agent of Change

      Air power alone doesn’t win battles because air-power cannot take and hold terrain, take prisoners, control strategic assets, or ultimately remain on the field of conflict.

      A relevant and topical example of which their is currently a very good movie in theaters about is the miracle at Dunkirk. The British recovered most of their Army and then some of the French Force as well. All because, in a fit of ego over the power of the Luftwaffe, Hermann Goering demanded that the Wermacht be called to halt and hold slowly closing perimeter to allow the Luftwaffe to destroy the British forces.

      Had the Wermacht been allowed by German high command to continue the assault aggressively and drive the beleaguered and demoralized British and French armies into the sea assisted by Luftwaffe, the British Government might have been forced to terms of surrender for their army at least and the world would likely be a very different place today.

      Air power is significant and has great advantages in conjunction with a combined arms force, but there are a great many things it can’t do by itself.

      • Carey_Mahoney

        So what? If you can’t hold objectives anymore due to only flyers left on the board, then double up on annihilating your opponent’s ground troops from above to make sure they can’t either. With the exaggerated example of only five Storm Ravens left, that should not quite be out of reach. Especially considering that there are pure Knights armies that don’t suffer from the new patch in the same way, it seems even more odd, to me at least..

        Besides, in the present and younger past, several conflicts take shape mainly in aerial bombardment. I’m sure you know that. Which shouldn’t matter anyway, because this is about the asocial grimdark, where they probably don’t care at all and just bomb the crap out of the enemy.

        • Agent of Change

          The simple answer is this, this game has objectives. In the vast majority of any mission you are going to play the primary objectives are going to be some piece or real estate you need to capture or contest. Aircraft cannot realistically do either. knights in fact can, tanks, infantry, bikes all can.

          That’s the crux. Functionally the only way for an airforce to kill the enemy is to level anything they could hide in or behind, which would mean in many cases destroying the very thing you are trying to capture or contest. “Bombing teh crap out of the enemy isn’t nearly as effective as people like to think it is.

          Bottom line you want a good reason why this rule makes sense, well it’s largely becasue it just does, and quite honestly probably should have been the rule in teh first place. I’m largely of the mind that if the enemy can’t contest objectives they’ve lost before they started.

      • TenDM

        But that’s not how games work. We don’t go ‘well, all these close combat units should suck because running across the battlefield with a chainsaw is ridiculous’. We balance assault so that it’s functional and balanced. Imperial Guard has all tank lists because we looked at it and made it work. We can do the same thing here.

        Contesting objectives in flyers is simple, they keep the enemy off it. You’re not going to do whatever you need to do on an objective when a ship is hovering above it blasting away with full force. I mean a tank holding an objective barely makes sense but it’s fine because it’s a game not a simulation.

        I think it would be shame if we removed a type of army simply because the headline ships were over powered out of the box. Nerf the problem ships a little, add other ships to fill different combat roles, and make air-only Imperial armies a thing. I’d love to play against a balanced air list with minimal ground support.

        • Agent of Change

          we can just dispense with all talk of what makes sense in terms of combat for the moment and just boil it down to pure game/balance design perspective

          As a first step this was better move than just adjusting the points of a single model. Why? Because at it’s core they are less worried about the one subjectively judged OP vehicle and more concerned about list diversity as regards a unit class that contains that particular vehicle. I mean it’s not like they hid their motive, they said what they did and exactly why they did so. It makes sense, it also follows the least change principle of complex system design; make the smallest change that has the largest effect and observe results before applying further change.

          Do the points need to change probably definitely in regards to the Storm Raven, but unlike this change which potentially adjusts the cost/value equation for the Storm Raven (we just won’t know until the next tournament, you can tell me what you think but none of us KNOW how this shifted the meta) and Points change to just teh storm raven may have just shifted the problem to a different flyer potentially, or simply made the Storm Raven Swarm 1 storm raven less. The fact is it’s unlikely that small points change to the Storm Raven on it’s own would have had a significant impact on this list build and a large enough points cahnge would have had even farther reaching effects across all aspects of the game.

          Bottom line it makes more sense for points changes to be done after considered periods taking into account the rest of the cost/value in teh army, except where there is no other option. After this if the Swarm is still a big thing there may be no other choice that a sharp points increase, i suppose we will find out.

    • AircoolUK

      Nah… holding objectives with transports shouldn’t be a thing either, especially with troops still inside; that’s not taking an objective, it’s just asking for a rocket right up your a….

  • Tushan

    Good decision.

    Now nerf the remaining manure like bird spam etc.

    • Commissar Molotov

      The doubled the cost of Razorwing flocks and reduced their unit size, I think.

      • Tushan


        Brims too?

        • Commissar Molotov

          I don’t think so, but I’ll go check.


          Nope, no change to Brims.

  • davepak

    I would agree that it was indeed a clever solution – and addresses any other flyer spam issues.

    Kudos to GW for addressing it, however, maybe, just maybe they should have looked at WHY people were choosing those specific units.

    They are exceptionally strong for the points – that is the cause of the problem.

    That is just exacerbated because now it is easier to take a bunch of them.

    People don’t spam bad or balanced units usually – otherwise we not call it spam.

    The flyer is amazing for the points – hence maximizing the benefit of that capability. Can you deal with one or maybe two? Yes, however, that does not change the fact they are bit too good for their points.

    Some units need tuning – hence, why we see stormraven spam being a thing, and not doom scythe spam.
    (and yes, some of the other a ‘bit good for the points’ flyers could use some tuning (not nerf into the ground, but tuning) as well.

    They fixed the symptom, not the cause. Although they did a good job at addressing flyer spam as well.

  • CloakingDonkey

    well if you have a bunch of other stuff on the table, a few flyers won’t ruin your day through that rule. It’s when flyers make up 90% of your points and you have something like cheap infantry models… that’s when you get smacked about by this new rule. perfect change for this situation imo.

  • CloakingDonkey

    wow… that is a very clever way of nerfing the spam list while not invalidating fliers. Kudos GW.

    I’ve found fliers to be a little squishier than ground vehicles and monsters despite the -1 to hit. If they were much more expensive than they are, I probably would opt for different choices. So this way is perfect. They’re still great choices for some glass cannon firepower at reasonable cost while not being infinitely spammable. I expected a FAAAAR more hamfisted approach, if I’m honest.

    • Deathwing

      And it works out great because it only says units with the flyer keyword. Units embarked on those flyers still count. That 5 man scout squad with no wargear or that lone wolf in power armor with a bolt pistol and a wooden stick just got real important.

      • JoBane

        Unit embarked in transport are not considered on the table.

        • Deathwing

          Read the wording of the FAQ update. It says to count units embarked to keep sudden death from occurring

          • JoBane

            Page 215 – Sudden Death
            Change point 2 to read:
            ‘If at the end of any turn after the first battle round, one
            player has no models on the battlefield, the game ends
            immediately and their opponent automatically wins a
            crushing victory. When determining if a player has any
            units on the battlefield, do not include any units with
            the Flyer Battlefield Role – these units cannot operate
            within a combat airspace indefinitely and they cannot
            hold territory without ground support. Furthermore, do
            not include any units with the Fortification Battlefield
            Role unless they have a unit embarked inside – even the
            most formidable bastion requires a garrison if it is to
            pose a threat.’
            With that said, go read the rule about transport. Unit embarked in transport are not considered on the table. This why Aura buff don’t work and psyker can’t cast even in a open top vehicule.

          • Koonitz

            Note that the quoted text by JoBane indicates that only FORTIFICATIONS with embarked units count, because the embarked unit makes the fortification count. The flyer is unaffected by this wording.

          • Arcangelo Daniaux

            And that’s dumb, loosing the game because you want to move some ground unit using your stormraven(s) ? One more proof that the rule team of GW can’t write proper rules since 5th edition

          • Viper666.Qc

            Exactly what I think too…. Removing firing arcs from flyers was a bad decision since they normally have a lot of firepower with amazing mobility and now they try to fix them the wrong way (how different is an hovering flyer different than a skimmer…)

          • AircoolUK

            Er, nope. You’ve got no troops on the ground, ergo, you lose.

          • Deathwing

            I agree. I get where jobane and the other douchemonkeys are coming from but its simply not the intent of the rule or the change in the rule. The rule is meant to entice people to not be a douchemonkey –
            Ie take nothing but stormravens – but if someone tells me they think they win because i have 2 storm ravens with units left in both of them on turn 3 because “you have no models on the battlefield” that’s just stupid. Its not like its reserves that are not even in play. Far from it.

          • Arcangelo Daniaux

            Yes, but it’s what’s going to happen, and in a tournament, he can just call a ref’ to get his win.

          • Deathwing

            I would hope any ref at a tourny with a brain would understand what the intent of this and the FAQ was and tell the troll off.

      • CloakingDonkey

        no they don’t count cause when you embark a unit you remove them from the table. They only count if they disembark and slog it.

  • Ray Long

    It may be that Age of Sigmar is the greatest thing to happen to 40k.

  • benn grimm

    Seems like an interesting fix, creative almost, one could say… Whether or not it works, kudos to them for responding so quickly.

  • Drpx

    LOL, they used the “diversity” card. This was totally about making sure people buy Primaris marines.

    • GnomesForge

      Everything is about making people buy Primaris. Well they can stick their well laid plan up their well laid..

  • Bootneck

    I’d hardly class that as a fix, whats stopping someone building a list mostly composing of flyers and a few ground units. LR Achilles or Proteus with some tough HQs inside. Hide them away whilst the Stormraven do the damage.

    • Koonitz

      Because it’s not always easy to hide them away. You can try, but if a list comes up that can deal with your hiding by using mobility, or ‘deep strike’, you’re sunk.

      • Bootneck

        Yeah i get that but, I think a clever player could abuse that and make a very difficult unit(s) hidden inside a different difficult to remove unit.

        Then when that pops, out comes more separate units.

        Proteus LR 12″ DS denial aura rules makes DS charges impossible – that makes another turn your alive.

        All the while your raining down all that firepower from those Stormravens.

        I think you’d soon find they’d have to allocate a lot firepower to remove you, and soon there would be a choice between which units to shoot.

        • Bootneck

          Inquistor Coteaz in a LR, with some units of Jokaero weapon smiths around. Maybe.

          Or Celistine inside a rhino.

          Custodian Guard with Storrmsheilds inside a Venerable LR

          Yarrick inside a Chimmy with a cheap blob of guard.

          I don’t own any of these units and wouldn’t attempt something like this – just merely pointing out that if someone wanted to spam some flyers they still could fairly effectively.

    • Xodis

      With non scattering DeepStrikers now, it wouldnt take much to assassinate them while your birds are focused on the rest of the army.

    • 301stFeinminsterArmoured

      Mastodon with a Techmarine on Bike would do the trick. Take 2 LTs to round out Compulsories. Maybe even a full squad of Tartaroi or Vanguard.

  • Angus MacKenzie

    “Nobody wants that.” The hell they don’t!

    There is nothing I relish more than watching ‘adults’ destroy their own property because a toy company changed rules for plastic soldiers. Watching idiots hurt themselves is one of the joys of life! Gods, there are entire genres of comedy based on it! 😀

    So bring those FAQ’s, GW! Fast and furious, and burn those armies folks!!

  • Viper666.Qc

    This look like a pathetic way to “fix” the flyers spam….
    In your last turn, if you have 3 hovering flyers on objectives and a single model anywhere on the table, you can win the game but if you don’t have that single model, you auto lose the game. If you get a transport flyer and a single unit left on the table and you enter the transport, you auto lose the game…. They should have fixed the flyers by giving them limited firing arcs instead (they already have moving arcs….) and adjust their points accordingly….

  • Jeremy Larson

    It is just me, but the Sudden Death change doesn’t seem to stop Storm Raven alpha strikes. It says ‘after the first game round,’ so you can still plop down 3-5 storm ravens and nothing else round one, fly forward to optimal range, vaporize things, and drop your cheap troop choices round 2. And for that matter, you can put down 3-5 storm ravens and a single character and still have boots on the ground. SRs are so large that they’re almost certainly going to be closer than any character, and so still defend it.

    • happy_inquisitor

      The issue with ravenspam was that no “normal” list would have so much anti-air that it could survive the alpha-strike and still have enough anti-air left to compete. The ravenspam could and would just target the AA capability and leave everything else to be mopped up later in the game. It might take 3-4 turns to get tabled but if you are doing next to nothing in return the outcome is boringly inevitable.

      If the ravenspam player auto-loses unless they deploy their cheap troops (and they will be minimal because ravenspam is expensive) then it is a question of surviving a couple of turns with enough models to kill those cheap troop choices. That sounds to me more like a real game where both players have a way to win.

      Seems like a decent fix to me. Does not totally invalidate those models someone just bought but gives other players a way to counter them and go for the win. Does not affect narrative or casual players at all.

      • Jeremy Larson

        Cheapest unit in the SM line-up is 32 points for 2 veterans. Not only can you stuff 6 units of them into a raven, you can also hide the unit stupidly easily.

        • 301stFeinminsterArmoured

          We’re also getting Mini-marine Lieutenants, so even your HQ’s got cheaper.

    • Chad Underdonk

      But the difference is that you no longer have to kill the Storm Raven spam. You can concentrate fire on the ground element. If they can’t keep them alive and on the table all the points they spent on fliers is worthless when they get sent packing. Considering there is no hiding from an opponent who can place 9″ away they can’t even do the tried and true hide in the back with one guy routine.

  • AircoolUK

    Well, from my point of view, getting 12 Command Points would be my first objective. Ok, that means 6 troops choices, but it’s worth a try.

    • 301stFeinminsterArmoured

      Or 3 and 6 Planes. Or 3, 3 Planes, and 3 Knights.

  • Sbehling

    Ive read several posts about spamming flyers, and have just mentally pictured a tournament where everyone had an identical stormraven list. At least this faq will stop that one from happening..

    • 301stFeinminsterArmoured

      Everybody running the same list? Maybe. Air Superiority and Superheavy are still good primary detachments though.

  • si1

    40+ shots, how?
    twin assault cannon is 12 shots, twin heavy bolter is 6 shots, two hurricane bolters = 2 x 6 shots (12 shots) an two stormstrike missile launchers = 2 shots for a grand total of 32 shots.

    • Commissar Molotov

      Hurricane Bolter is Rapid-Fire, so if you’re within 12″ you’re getting 24 shots with ’em instead of 12.

      • si1


  • GnomesForge

    What happened? Honeymoon over already?

  • Sbatragno Sbatragno

    detach are the porblems.
    covers are the problems.
    rules about los are the problems.
    just take a look about 5th ediction e solve any problem: damn gw!

  • Sbatragno Sbatragno

    where i can explain my concept to gw?

  • georgelabour

    So a lot of the anti-fans have been whining about how GW needs to be more reactive to their game, and the flaws uncovered by exploitative players. Lo and behold here they are doing exactly what the edgelords have spent years clamoring for.

    Now to wait for at least a few of the more notable ones to not just go and find something else to whine about, Though I shan’t hold my breath while waiting for them to show some positivity now that they’ve gotten what they claimed to desire.

    Especially the ones who were saying they’d quit and are still in every article wailing and waving their hands around hysterically.

  • badmojo1966

    Would a 2nd edition approach work where up to a maximum of 50% of your points could be spent on Support platforms (vehicles) as well as up to a 50% maximum on characters, but you HAD to spend a minimum of 25% on Troop choices?

  • Matt Mo

    Yes Games Workshop!! Immediately addressing issues with the meta is such a huge shift from the GW of even 2-3 years ago

  • lemt

    I love the way GW are handling things. I’d much rather have to adapt my army than to have a stale game.

  • SteelMaelstorm

    GW will never put rules in place which inhibit model sales. So the old FOC restrictions of 3 units will not return.

  • Thomson

    The problem is that GW does not use their most powerful tool to ensure balance (points), but always tries to achieve balance by tweaking with the rules.

    The problem with their approach is that by tweaking the rules, they just effect a lot of different units/lists and therefore by fixing one bug they introduce 10 more.

    If they just would increase the points cost of a unit that tends to be spammed by 10% until its no longer spammed (and decrease the points costs of units that never show up by 10% until they do), they would achieve much more with much less… pain.

    As long as they hand out an upgrade of 6 Bolters (i.e. the fire power an entire squad of Tactical Marines) for the cost of one stupid Guardsman, they will never succeed in their attempt to “balance” 40k

    • CloakingDonkey

      The problem with this is that if it’s not Stormravens that are spammed, it’s Stormtalons or Stormhawks. Maybe Crimson Hunters or Razorwing Jetfighters… In this specific case it’s that the changes to fliers have made them very powerful for their points cost and they act exactly like every other model so there’s no disadvantage to taking them.

      This change was perfect for this situation because due to fliers being good value, they will still see play but full flier lists can’t be played because you auto lose as soon as your 15 scouts and guiliman are gone… or your 15 guardians and Ycarne, etc.

  • Callum Rae

    The kind of people this will annoy are the same people I don’t want to play against so I’m happy. I have no time for people who build lists that require zero tactical thinking. Tournaments should be about battles of skill and the more Gw does to incourage this the better.

  • Richard Mitchell

    On the plus side it is a really good thing GW addressed the evident imbalance from the tournament. You can get a lot of data from tournaments in a short amount of time and the minds of competitive players are like game testers.

    I just wonder how much this change really affects spam with core issues like keywords leading to more options form Imperium models and the first turn advantage alpha struck. Will people just take one less flyer and pocket a cheap but durable unit somewhere?

    Right now it seems the core issues are:
    1. GW tried to implement a very limited version of AoS factions. But instead of saying Imperium, Xenos, and Heretic they keyworded Imperium but didn’t keyword any of the other factions. They may have to expand that (like keywording Eldar and Tau, Nids and Necrons, Orcs and Chaos together)

    2. They simplified the game to basically make a 15mm size game in model scope play on a 28mm scale and to do so very quickly. This seems like the a fundamental design flaw and lends to turn one wins.

    3. Wins need to focus on winning the objective. This has been a long time issue with 40k. Clearly off the table has always been the primary objective but GW does want to press a more objective based game. Short of changing tournament rules so wins can only be made through objectives (which is not a good solution).

    4. GW needs to change its design approach. Spam is not the problem. If someone wants to take all flyers that is okay as long as taking all flyers is nearly as useful as taking all ground units. If this is a one off FAQ that is not a bad thing, but if the changes are reactive and instead of proactive then they need to go back to a FOC. And you really need if for the scale of game they want the community to be playing.

    Same issue I have with BattleTech. I love the aesthetic, fluff, and even the different levels of granular complexity players can choose to have. But when I envision BT, I envision a mixed lance with infantry and other vehicles. However, why would you play that when you can just choose all omni-mechs

    The plus side is GW is listening, they just got a road ahead of them to get the game both operational AND competitive.

  • joetwocrows

    I think GW has joined the big leagues. And, I am pleased.

    There’s a (American) football player named Shea McClellin for the New England Patriots that blocked a scoring attempt ( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VRAhkNegAHg) with a nice, legal and unstoppable move.

    The reaction from the NFL? Make the move illegal on safety grounds. Safety. Sure. Oh, wait, I digress.

    The point is every sporting or gaming organization makes rule changes as they see they need them to keep the game going.

    Bravo, GW!