40k Deep Thought: Smite May Be Too Strong – FTN

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We’re talking Astra Militarum Relics, going over the new psychic powers andsome possible  ‘fixes’ for Smite in Matched Play.

We pick up where we left off with the Astra Militarum coverage this week by discussing a couple of interesting Relics and going over the new psychic powers. In the middle of the show we chat with Pat from the Table of Ultimate Gaming and in part 3 we discuss a couple of potential ‘fixes’ for Smite in Matched Play.


There is a TON of information in this book and it’s truly a list maker’s paradise with countless options of good, effective, and cool looking units.



Hey guys,

I hope you caught my short video on Youtube where I talk about the new Hellhound variants.

In this episode we chat about two of the new and very powerful Relics in the IG dex.  Both of these have the potential to get inside your opponents head.  This is important because it won’t take much to put them on tilt while you’re raining rockets on them from range.  Speaking of range… we will have a show soon to talk about how assault can work, ha.

We talk about a few upcoming events in the last part of the year and go into more detail about the Friday Night Events happening at our event Warzone: Atlanta.

Before the hobby segment we talk about the point disassociation between the models casting Smite and how powerful Smite is.  While we don’t ‘solve’ the problem we do wish-list a bit about how we could consider fixing it.  The Smite talk starts around 1 hour and 10 mins in.

It is easy to look at the Malefic Lord as an abusive unit.  Its cheap to buy with points and its a cheap model to cobble together for use on the table.  There are no modeling ‘standards’ to adhere to for this guy other than the Forge World Renegade psyker.  I faced a list with with 8 of these guys, Belakor, Magnus the Red and a Renegade knight.  Let’s not talk about the Changeling and 100 Brimstone horrors that were also in the list but it does help me set up my main point.  There is a disassociation between points and and the psyker ability.  We speak to that a little bit on the show and propose another solution that has nothing to do with point changing.  Again, it starts at around the hour and 10 min mark but hopefully you take a listen to the whole show.

We spend some time with Pat from the Table of Ultimate Gaming and see how their KickStarter went and discuss how people can still take advantage of the campaign price breaks.

The Finishing Moves segment is sponsored by Frontline Gaming. Their new mats are now hot off the presses and getting ready to be shipped. Please check them out, even if you already have a game mat. Their new styles are very impressive. If you haven’t already get your tickets NOW for the mega Las Vegas Open.

We talk about Batch Painting this week. Assembly line style specifically. This technique can really shorten your time to table if you plan it out right. We talk about a few things that work for us.



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FTN mostly focuses on Warhammer 40k, but again you will see in the first few episodes we take a severe deep dive into nerdom. These have been a blast to record and I hope they help pass the time for you.

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Paul Murphy – Host

Justin Troop – troopsmash
Christopher Morgan – captain morgan
Andrew Whittaker
Horton Doughton
Ricky Addington

  • I_am_Alpharius

    No. Moving on.

  • Someone

    They need to stop using the title ‘Deep Thought’ it doesn’t mean what they think it does…….

    • SilentPony

      You mean Jack Handey ISN’T involved?! What a gyp!

      • Dennis J. Pechavar

        Hey you are good enough, smart enough and doggone, people like you!

    • Snord

      My ‘thought’ exactly…

    • Andrew O’Brien


  • Red_Five_Standing_By

    Smite is not too powerful.

    The fact that it can so readily be spammed is an issue that makes it too powerful (in particular armies).

    • ReveredChaplainDrake

      And characters capable of smiting can be taken over and over and over again.

      Man, it sure would be nice if there were some way of curbing the abuses of spamming single cheap characters. Perhaps the answer could be some manner of, oh, I dunno… ‘chart’. Some kind of chart that dictated how one had to ‘organize’ their ‘force’. And this chart sets limitations on what one can put in their force, say, through a finite number of slots for different organizational types of units, some of which are mandatory, while others are optional.

      Sadly, no such thing seems to exist in 40k.

      …Seriously though, make it so that you start with a lot of command points (about 3-4 per 500 pts), but each FOC you buy *costs* CPs instead of generating them. That’s about the easiest solution I can think of.

      • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

        Ah CAD, how I miss thee…

      • Spacefrisian

        It does exist, 1 detachment for 500 points, 2 for 1000 points, 3 for 2000 points etc etc.

    • SilentPony

      It’s a simple fix. Can’t cast psychic powers if you’re locked in combat, and you can only cast each power once per turn. That way you can’t spam cheap casters and cast boatloads of smites everywhere.
      Also add 1 to its casting cost.

      • Steven Hyche

        Terrible fix

        • SilentPony

          Why? If the problem is its too easy to spam Smite, make it harder to spam smite.
          Problem solved.

          • Steven Hyche

            Because you want to break armies like tzeentch demons (pure) to fix a point cost issue. The main problem with smite is a smiter should never be as cheap as 30 points.

          • ZeeLobby

            Honestly a lot could be fixed by just having powers cost points.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            But Smite would still be the cheapest of all the powers since it is the most basic.

          • ZeeLobby

            Why? Just cause everyone can take it doesn’t mean that it couldn’t be costed based on it’s power on the table. Really psychic powers should be seen as just another piece of wargear and costed accordingly. Sure that might mean it’s more expensive than a faction specific power, but it’s not like points have any relevance to fluff.

          • SilentPony

            The problem isn’t point cost, its spamming. Tz. Demons aren’t the only ones spamming Smite. And there are two solutions to that: Point cost change to make spamming harder for one army, OR changing Smite to not be as powerful, thus making all armies spamming it not as powerful.
            And seeings how this is a universal problem, changing one army won’t fix it.

            That’s why when people were spamming Storm Ravens they changed ALL aircraft rules, not just a price hike for Ravens.

          • Steven Hyche

            Sorry you are wrong, period. Its not a. UNIversal problem. Where are the Ynarri smite spam lists? Eldar smite spam lists? Thousand son smite spam? Nnone of these lists are dominating the meta. If you are having this hard of a time fighting all smiters you need to brush up on your tactics.

          • SilentPony

            DG plague-caster spam lists, genestealer cult spam, librarian dread spam, Grey Knight spam, Craftworld spams.
            Its not just ONE army, and not just Tournament lists.

          • Steven Hyche

            I never said you couldnt bring a decent amount of smiters in these armies. Im saying they arent that strong and if you are being beat by them a lot you need to learn how to fight smiters. Its really not that hard. Its the armies that can do 10 smiters and still have a balanced shooting/bubble wrap game that are the problem childs.

            I would (and have) decimate librarian, sorcerer, farseer spam armies. Grey knight spam is terrible, 1k son spam is terrible and warlock spam is terrible.

            The main issue with all of the above armies is that a good opponent will control the battle completely. The opponent of the spammer will be able to pick what gets targeted. Most people that complain about smite dont use this advantage correctly at all. They do the same tactics they use against all armies and throw their arms up like smite is the issue. You cant deep strike your terminators or alpha strike your hard hitting units to the front of the army to hope to have a good alpha strike or you can expect tonlose every time. The other issue with smite is the range. So most armies will have a coulle of turns of shooting before worryinng about being smited at all. The third issue with smite spam armies that you mentioned is the very low model count. Board control will be a major issue in later turns if you pick your targets well for the smiters.

          • SilentPony

            See I would take a much more direct route. Someone takes GK or Genestealer cult or 1k, I’d just bring Sisters of Silence. 50% chance they refuse to play you, and even if they do every single advantage they have is negated.
            Done and done. If they spam smiters, I spam units that can’t be targeted by smiters.

          • Steven Hyche

            I dont factor in tailor made lists to counter lists.

          • Spacefrisian

            There are combat related powers, terrible fix.

          • SilentPony

            Then what do you think the problem is and how would you fix it?
            ’cause I’m thinking its Smite spam, and there are two ways to fix that; make it harder to spam, or make Smite not as good.

    • Dragon2928

      It’s not smite, or even characters capable of taking smite. It’s characters capable of taking smite and notning else of note.
      SM librarians, chaos sorcerers, etc are not the issue. It’s stuff like the Primaris Psyker and Malefic lord who aren’t good (or priced) to do anything else.

    • Hrudian

      Simple Smite nerf idea:

      1st Smite cast in turn = casting value 5+
      2nd Smite cast in turn = casting value 6+
      3rd Smite cast in turn = casting value 7+


  • This was said below but I’ll chime in with the same sentiment. Smite is fine. Its the fact that it can be min/max spammed that is the problem.

    • petrow84

      True. How about:
      – once per turn for each battlefield role per detachment
      – once per turn per detachment (maybe a bit too restrictive)

  • COsteve

    I guess there’s no Rule of One for 40k?

    • Charon

      only in matched and even there smite is an exception.

    • YetAnotherFacelessMan

      I also think Rule of One shouldn’t apply to Arcane Missile. I think it’s better to have a basic ability that you can always cast. Especially for, say… Death. You might want a bunch of necromancers around and the third necromancer just doesn’t have a lot to do.

  • Charon

    Smite in itself would be ok. It is just GW that is not thinking about any consequences when adressing certain armies.
    Thousand sons sorcs only get a nerfed smite because “if it was a normal smite it would be too easy to spam”.
    We are talking here about a member of a unit that costs 113 points for 5 models.
    While on the other side of the scale they are totally fine with spammable 24 or 40 point characters that can spam smite.

  • Davis Centis

    Smite is fine. It’s a great safety valve on things in case invulnerable saves get to be too strong. The problem is that there are too many super-cheap Smiters. Some Smiters are very appropriately costed (Librarians, Sorcerers, Cult Magus, Farseer, etc.), but others are way too cheap (Wyrdvane Psyker, Malefic Lord, etc.). Smite is a powerful ability, and a great ability, but units need to actually pay for it. That’s it, just a re-pointing of some units, just like GW said they would be open to doing.

    • J Mad

      Farseer isnt that cheap lol 120pts… you can take 2-3 Smites in other armies.

      • Davis Centis

        The Farseer was one of the examples of a model that isn’t cheap and that is properly paying the points for it.

        • J Mad

          I saw Cult Magus and i think that they are cost efficient for what they are, but they are easily spammed and i know many that take 6-7 of them, so i (sadly and i should not do this) assumed you put the farseer in the cheap list.

          My mistake.

    • vlad78

      But there is no safety valve against hordes, hence it’s a bad rule.

      • Davis Centis

        There needs to be a different safety valve against hordes. You don’t want 1 thing to be a safety valve against everything, because then that becomes the new super-crazy-op thing. Hordes are, in my opinion, the safety valve against Smite spam. Taking a wound off a Knight, and taking out a 4 point conscript, are definitely not equal. The safety valve against hordes SHOULD be leadership, but despite saying that leadership would be important again, the VERY FIRST THING they do is to give everyone fantastic ways of getting around Leadership problems. If Leadership problems were actually a thing that horde armies had to deal with, you would only need a little more than half as much firepower to take out a horde.

        • vlad78

          Exactly but alas it is not. Template removal, terrain movement penalty removal and a really bad moral system left hordes without any weakness in 8th. You can’t even out manoeuver them given that manoeuvering is not that important in 8th, you can always shoot, almost no cover, everything woudning everything…

          To me the whole system is broken. GW fixed some 7th ed issues by creating other glaring ones, as usual.

          I’ve seen no real improvement in the game since 5th edition, before codex creep ruined it.

          • Davis Centis

            I think the system isn’t broken; we’re just seeing and talking about tournament stuff here, and tournaments are going to push the envelope. I find my standard day-to-day games to be the best in years! Day-to-day games don’t tend to suffer from such skews, as people take more diversity (they like to play with their toys). 7th edition seemed to punish you for playing how you liked to play. 8th doesn’t do that very frequently. Only my GSC have been shelved as a stand-alone force so far.

          • vlad78

            I’m not a tournament player, yet I like the game to retain some realism or at least to recreate some famous warmovies cliches. 8th does not, just like AOS does not simulate medieval or ancient warfare (even if mixed with some fantasy)

            I barely played 7th because it was broken all around by the codicies and I was fed up with GW rehearsing more of the same 6th edition but the core rules derived from 5th were relatively solid.

            8th are not. I feel each battle looks the same, gameplay is really bland to me, especially between armies with a codex, and it will get worse with each release and the rise of mortal wounds.
            As i said elsewhere, my biggest complain lies with the fact (at least for me) skill does not win the day. You barely can outmanoeuver your opponent. You can’t hide, you can’t avoid.

            Gimmicks and initiative and rolls of dices (and hordes ;p ) do win games.

          • Davis Centis

            I agree that the game does not retain realism, but I find it quite nice that it doesn’t. Makes the game more fluid for me. I haven’t found games to be too similar, and I do find that I’m able to hide, but I have to put in a lot of energy to do so. You NEED big LoS blocking terrain pieces in 8th in order to hide, otherwise you’re right, you can’t hide.

            I do also feel that there’s out-manoeuvring going on, it’s just smaller. You’re not rewarded as much for hitting the flank of their army, but you are rewarded for pulling characters in one direction and the unit they’re supporting in another. It’s more zoomed-in out manoeuvring, which makes truly fast units fill a different role than we were previously used to.

          • vlad78

            I understand your point of view even if I don’t share it.

            I don’t understand why less realism makes the game more fluid. You don’t have less rolls because rules were suppressed in the BRB, as a matter of fact they return in each codicies through gimmicks making again the game more complex instead of using universal rules.

            About the micro positionning, each 40k edition did that beforehand, that’s about the only thing which remained in 8th and that’s not enough by a long shot imho.
            In 6 and 7th, you decided if your character would tank the wounds or not and you could be taken by surprise. In the end, it’s not really an improvement. AN even that can be spoiled by the target priority rule between characters.

            Well at least I’m happy you’re satisfied by how the game works during casual games.

          • Davis Centis

            Thanks for the refreshing and thoughtful discussion! I hope you find a way to enjoy the game more than you are.

          • vlad78

            We can’t all be jerks. ;p
            Well at least not always. ^^


  • Mike Forrey

    Put back composition score in tournament play and make it COUNT. You wanna min/max spam that’s fine. Just understand you won’t win the tournament even if you win every game because you decided power gaming and spamming was acceptable.

    • matty199

      No never no way. Composition and the like is worse than the cure. Rather have smite spam than composition. Gw need to fix the points of primaris psykers and most importantly malefic lords

      • Mike Forrey

        How does that fix chaos psyker spam or assassin spam or spam in general?

  • StingrayP226

    No, but like mentioned before there are uncosted units that can spam normal smites for WAY too cheap. They just need to water down those cheap unit’s smites like they did to Eldar Warlocks and Thousand Sons Aspiring Sorcerors. If they just blanket nerf they threaten to break more units than fix.

  • Randy Randalman

    Smite isn’t too strong. The fact Chaos and Imperium can spam 30-40 point, multi-wound characters who can hide and use full Smite is the problem.

    • vlad78

      Which means in essence the whole system is broken.

  • Drpx

    I don’t know if it’s too strong, but Smite is 8th edition in a nutshell.

  • becizzle

    also AM is too strong. That’s IG to ya’ll. Double tapping tanks for what?

  • Ronin

    Smite should be nerfed to doing 1 mortal wound if the model costs less than 60 points, in my opinion. Grey Knights on the other hand should have access to full smite so they can have a counter balance against horde armies or it should be given to characters at least.

  • Spacefrisian

    The 1 mortal wound from smite that some armies got wasnt a bad fix imo, maybe an idea.

    Maybe alternatives could be added to replace Smite? Maybe a power called Might, 5 + target unit gets +1 strength ( 8+ if units has 11 or more models, 10+ if target unit has 21 or more models)

  • Gamecock13

    As a Dark Eldar player, the psyker phase was one thing I was pretty worried about going into 8th edition. Huge nerf to perils of the warp and an exceptional chance of generating approx. 2 mortal wounds every turn per psyker mode per Smite….and just about nothing we can do about it (i.e. no psykers so no deny rolls).

    Aside from our one use Crucible of Malediction, it is an entire phase we are excluded from, which is fine from the standpoint of not casting anything during the phase…but it is a pretty big deficit when it comes to denying enemy powers. That’s been my only issue with Smite and/or the Psyker phase in 8th.

  • LordKrungharr

    A solution to some problems would be only one of any character unit per army. Could still have smite all ove the place in some cases but perhaps not quite as much.

    I do think casting powers in combat is okay ad in the stories psykers use their powers often when in combat.

  • Hrudian

    Simple Smite nerf idea:

    1st Smite cast in turn = casting value 5+
    2nd Smite cast in turn = casting value 6+
    3rd Smite cast in turn = casting value 7+