40K: Erratas Are Not The Way To Fix The Meta

 

Players can fix the meta without GW.

With any new edition of the game there will be a new meta. I’ve already written about how the meta is already shaking out, and why, and many people are now asking: how do we fix it? For many the answer is to put out new erratas to address perceived issues.  Lets talk about why this is worst way to fix the game.

The Call for Errata

Since the start of 8th Games Workshop has shown a willingness to put out some quick erratas and FAQs to fix issues. This has led many players to seem to expect this treatment for the foreseeable future. Because GW was quick to act on issues like flyer spam, Flock of Doom and Brimstone Horrors players now seem to feel its the way to address all issues. Any time a combo pops up or a list seems to take advantage of something players call for erratas to fix it. For exzample a couple weeks ago I wrote up a stupid Death Guard list that used stratagems to do something quirky. In the comments you could almost at once find posters saying the list should be FAQ’d or would be if it won events.

 

Its not just quirky lists that people are calling on GW to address. Pretty much any list or combo that has done well in events has had players calling to errata it. Conscripts, Guilliman, Imperial character soup lists. Pretty much any list that has won an event has had a vocal amount of the community calling for GW to “fix”.

A Poor Solution

Overall, though popular with some players, Erratas and FAQs are a poor way to fix the meta. Lets look at some of those reasons. For one it’s simply impractical to do. Games Workshop puts out a lot of books and rules. Addressing each perceived issue or powerful list would require a constant stream of erratas coming out. More than that is simply the fact that there will always be a meta and there will always be a list or couple of lists that are dominating at a given time. It’s literally an impossible task to keep the meta “balanced” via FAQ.

It Stifles Innovation

The worst thing errating lists to “fix” the meta does is that is kills innovation. The truth is that there is no such thing as an unbeatable list. Any list can be beat, and a list that comes to dominate a meta will inevitably spawn lists designed to beat it. This is good. This is a natural cycle of the meta, in which a powerful lists arrives, wins a lot, and then is beaten, the meta shifts, new lists rise to the top and cycle repeats.

Fixing things by errata breaks this cycle.  Rather than come up with new or inventive lists, rather than pushing the game forward, players stagnate and call GW to fix things. Once that happens it begins its own cycle where players have no incentive to be inventive and rather just wait for GW to fix things. Thus the game never grows or evolves.

Hordes Are a Great Example

For an example of how this works lets look at hordes in 8th edition. Now 8th Edition has made hordes very powerful, there is no denying that. But one of the reasons they’ve kept dominating the meta is that players haven’t really been adjusting to fight them. Early hordes like Flock of Doom and Brimstone lists got fixed by errata and thus no one ever had to build lists to overcome them. Now many players struggle with conscripts and other hordes, but still rather than adjusting to fit them (T3 units can in fact be killed) players are not adjusting and they are running rampant over the meta.

Sometimes Things Are Working As Intended

Another issue with the constant calls for errata is the assumption that things are broken or not working as intended. However in a lot of cases this simply isn’t true. Not every combo or “exploit” is broken and unintended. When I wrote up that Death Guard list a few weeks ago many players felt I was abusing the rules and taking advantage of rules loopholes. GW did in fact put out an FAQ that addressed the combos I used in that list, an FAQ that validated how I used them. My combo was intended and the rules were working. This is the case with many lists people want errataed.

Sometimes It’s Needed

Of course sometimes erratas are needed. I don’t know if Brimstone Horrors or Flocks of Doom were so broken that they needed FAQing. I do think that flyer spam was, and was using a real loophole to take advantage of a number of things. I’m glad type of list got errataed. At the end of the day there will be lists that do need to be fixed by GW. Sometimes things slip though the gaps and end up getting used in unintended ways. I just think we needed to careful about doing this. A list thats dominated the meta for 1 month can be fixed by players. If a list is dominating the meta for 6+ months, well then maybe we should look at GW taking action. There is a balance that can be maintained.

Final Thoughts

FAQs and Erratas are always a tricky thing. I happy they exists and that GW is willing to use them to fix real problems with the game. I hope that they will be cautious when using them to address issues with the game as I worry it will stifle innovation and set a bad precedent. If GW is planning on using erratas to fix game balance issues, and not just mistakes made in writing the rules, I hope they will use them judiciously.

Left alone players tend to fix the meta pretty well themselves.

Thats all for today BOLS Fans. Let is know if you’d rather GW try to fix the meta with erratas or players should do it themselves with creative list building. 

 

  • majbjörn

    Eldars codex will fix the meta ^^

    • ZeeLobby

      Hehe.

    • Tia Teez

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      • Just a player

        having that kind of disposable money and spare time will surely fix the meta. Warlord Titans for everyone : D

    • Tothe

      You misspelled “Orks.” Even Orks don’t misspell that, ya weedy grot!

      • majbjörn

        I’ll ‘ave yer ‘ead on me bosspole in a squig leap ya gretchin lovin git!

        : D : D

  • Heinz Fiction

    All well and true but if something ISN’T working as intended, I’d prefer to have it fixed sooner rather than later.

    • Muninwing

      players *can* fix it in theory.

      players, in practice, *do not* fix it, and that’s why the meta becomes a mess of an arms race and the game becomes no fun to play with powerlists crushing the fun out of narrative or fluff lists.

      i understand that the “innovation” he speaks of is part of the culture of tournaments, but it’s part that crosses over poorly with the rest of the game.

      • silashand

        This. Players fix nothing themselves the vast majority of times.

        • Muninwing

          nanny states only exist because people act like children. gamers doubly so.

  • Ghachii
  • Talos2

    This is an argument that died a long time ago. Sadly a lot of people have to take the most powerful stuff and only the most powerful stuff. This means means players that don’t or can’t keep doing the same can’t play them and inevitably leads to everyone else just using the same stuff over and over. That is a dull and will lose interest very quickly

    • ZeeLobby

      Or good forbid they pick up a faction that just doesn’t have powerful stuff :/.

      • Drpx

        Just watched another aspiring Ork player quit last weekend. First game ever and he gets Necron barge spam. Returned a few hundred dollars worth of models that afternoon.

        • ZeeLobby

          Yeah. I mean I get the idea that allies are cool, but I really think that marked a downward turn in the game. At least create some bounty hunter faction available to all, or severely restrict allied units (I thought the Allied Detachment was pretty good), but it really does feel like some sides have all the stuffs.

          • David

            Allies in 7th was brilliant every player.had access to every tool. So no one could moan they were toolless 8th is unfortunately a step down because it’s allies system is asymmetric and that’s worse

          • ZeeLobby

            7th was basically factionless, and taking the best from each faction had almost no penalty (saw several Screamerstar + Scatbikes lists which were just depressing). We wound up with a completely imbalanced system, with such complexity that balance was never an option. Frankly it was pretty poor implementation of allies, it’s only benefit was being able to take anything. Honestly if they had just added a tax to that system, or some negative impact of allying that couldn’t just be avoided through placement, it could have maybe worked, even if created completely unfluffy combinations.

          • Muninwing

            no. every player who solely wanted competition had the ability to rush a crappy army with no basis in the fluff, or longstanding veterans with huge access to range of models could finally field a ton of their varied stuff.

            the theory was a fun way to access range or create theme. the actual was a mess of clashing elements that were exploited for competition’s sake.

          • NagaBaboon

            7th Allies matrix was dreadful, it took all the character and flavour out of the game and reinforced feelings that 40k was a purely meta game for meta gamers.

          • David

            Which it was and by and large still is which is half the point of this page

        • DoctorBored

          First off, shame on that Necron player for seal clubbing. That’s not GWs fault that the ork player quit, that’s a crappy powergamer that needs to be decked for being a jerk.

          • Mike Forrey

            DrBored is correct on that one. In our local group players like the Necron one would be returning their miniatures because they wouldn’t be able to find a game.

            It’s perfectly fine to play tuned games like that but you need to convey that before the game so each player can bring their most over tuned lists to the table.

          • zeno666

            So he should have let the new guy get more invested before running the guy over?
            And shouldn’t the Necron player get to play the list he likes?

          • Muninwing

            firstoff, from a business perspective, it makes more sense to let the necron player get more invested before the insanity of the meta arms race drives him away.

            second, “just because you can, doesn’t mean you should”

            it’s kinda weird to say that someone should be able to play what they like to play, since there are plenty of examples of how that is not the case in the structure of the game.

            i cannot take a 20-man unit of space marines. i cannot take twenty one-man units that all have missile launchers. i cannot take a land raider as a flyer. but shouldn’t i be able to play my marines how i want to?

          • zeno666

            I took for granted that the Necron player was playing a valid list that he likes.
            Not that he made things up 🙂

          • Richard Mitchell

            I think the reason why this is a sticking point for people, especially if they play 40k AND other games, is the phenomenon you mentioned is not common. I took out a Conquest against a new player and still walked him through opportunities to win. Which he did, just to prove that just because I took something on a huge base, that doesn’t mean there are not tactical options available.

          • Richard Mitchell

            Obviously

          • DoctorBored

            This is where communication between players is important. The Necron player knew full well what he was doing. He knew his list was full of cheese and spam. He knew it was a seal-clubbing list. The new player had a ruined experience because of this idiot and that’s one less person we have in the hobby. There’s no way you can spin this to put the Necron player in a positive light. He scared off a potential player and in an awful way and he should be ashamed of himself.

          • zeno666

            … Is that a challange? 😉

          • DoctorBored

            It’s a fool’s errand. Have fun running it. 😉

        • zeno666

          That is one lucky guy. The ork player that is.
          He got away from this horrible game before it was too late.
          That Necron player deserves a medal 🙂

          • Drpx

            Just play 5th.

          • Richard Mitchell

            I remember 5th, it was pretty tight.

        • Apocryphus

          Not to sound unsympathetic, but if he quit after 1 game ever, he probably wasn’t that invested anyway. At the same time, that Necron player sounds like a toxic element that needs to be dealt with. Seal clubbing is not okay.

          • ZeeLobby

            Taking away the club would help.

          • Apocryphus

            Would it though? Someone bent on slapping a new player around is going to find a way to do it no matter the tools available, be it rules lawyering, exploiting rules unknown to the new player, or out right cheating. If by take the club away you mean nerfing Necrons down, I don’t think that’s fair to the Necron players who aren’t a toxic presence in the community.

          • Muninwing

            so because they’ll find a way, we shouldn’t discourage it?

            because people will always find a way to commit crimes, we should stop bothering to arrest them for it?

          • Apocryphus

            I think you know full well that wasn’t my argument, but I’ll defend myself. By the logic you presented, using the crime analog, are you suggesting that if someone robs a bank, every person in said bank should get arrested? The root of the problem here is behavior based, not resource based. Nerfing Necrons because one person is causing issues is not fixing the problem. The behavior is what needs to be punished, not GW, not Necrons, not other Necron players. Arrest the bank robber, not the bystanders.

          • Richard Mitchell

            Equating a game to a legal terms, crime, and violation of a social contract is really cultish sounding. The only social contract in a game is you cannot break the rules aka. I can’t move my Knight piece as if it was a Queen piece.

          • Apocryphus

            Let me have my game cult, darn it! The analogy is in relation to behavior and resources. Limiting a person’s resources will not stop bad behavior. Any time you go to game store to play, you are entering a community. A person who is willfully harming other people in the community should be talked to in an effort to change that toxic behavior, your opponents are people too. If you are a vet, and a new player comes to you with a fresh army, playing for the first time, you should behave accordingly. Help them learn, give them tips, cultivate your community, then everyone profits.

          • Muninwing

            false equivalence.

            because some people have found ways to bend laws, new laws have and are drafted to prevent such actions. so if one person commits embezzlement, a new law then goes into effect to explicitly make illegal what they did… or because some people store illegally obtained money in a safety deposit box, it is now illegal for you to do so. or, because some people try to embezzle money, it is now illegal to do some of the things they would do leading up to that embezzlement, in order to more easily catch them doing the problematic behavior.

            if Necrons are not balanced, and therefore able to be exploited, then they need to be nerfed.

            like any other army. they should be exactly what the points claim they are, in terms of balance and power, as compared to the same points for an opponent.

            you cannot regulate the behavior. but you can make it harder for those people to try to break the game. and if it’s a balance issue, it’s not penalizing the other players by nerfing the things that are worth more than their points.

          • Apocryphus

            This isn’t necessarily an issue of something being easily abused, other than the new player trying to dip their toes into a popular wargame. Pretty much any list is abusable against a first time player. This is the problem, not Necrons. What if it had been someone playing your army that had drivin a first time player away? We wouldn’t be having this disagreement, we would likely be on the same level. Necrons are not a crime, just like fists are not a crime, though they can be used to hurt someone. A person must be held responsible for their own actions, not every person in a wide area by association. If there truly is a problem with the army, it will show up in much more severe cases, but noob stomping is not the fault of the Necron army, it’s the fault of the person using it.

          • Richard Mitchell

            This is a game, not a crime.

          • Muninwing

            i’m not suggesting that people are arrested for being cheezmonkeys. but at heart crimes are agreed-upon breaches of social contract.

            at any given LGS there is a different atmosphere and a different level of competition versus support/welcoming that a club or group will do. that’s great — ideally you can find a place that gives the experience you want. but the toxic people who break the game are encouraged by some clubs, exist in most places, and do damage to the social fabric when that’s not the standard.

          • ZeeLobby

            I mean there’s a whole range of players. Just cause someone wants to crush noobs doesn’t mean he’s necessarily cheating or rules lawyering. In the current state of 40K it can be as simple as running the latest net list. If you take away those lists, all of those people are forced to inflict less damage regardless of their method. If you take away the club, punching baby seals to death is a lot more challenging. Sure it’s the combination of the two, but one GW has direct control over.

          • Apocryphus

            I’m not suggesting he did cheat, but he might if he could get away with it. I don’t know the guy so I can’t say. All I’m saying is don’t punish the masses for the actions of the few. I personally don’t use or like Ghost Arks, but I’d hate to see Necrons suffer as a result of someone being a jerk. The unfortunate truth of this is that there are more list combos to each army than I care to count. No matter what GW does, a net list that curb stomps everyone will inevitably exist without a complete and total rewrite of 100% of the rules….again…

          • ZeeLobby

            Not really. Army composition restrictions, points adjustments or even adjusting the rules of the unit. All of this could solve the Ghost Ark issue. These all can be used to mitigate netlisting. GW has just never added these things. In fact 6th and 7th took most of them away. Internal codex balance would help a lot too. If the new players units were ineffective, why were they ineffective? There should be no nobrainer options for every slot.

          • Apocryphus

            A unit being ineffective can also be chalked up to inexperience. I would rather see a new player be taught and get that experience rather than get abused. If that new player had known the mess he was getting in to, he could have avoided it by not playing with that person. It really comes down to attitude and behavior. I think it would be a bigger ordeal for GW to re-re-balance every army than it seems, so we as players have to practice self control and sportsmanship when playing to help fix the problems in the game. GW needs to be involved in shoring up the weaknesses in their game, but they absolutely should not be holding our hands or policing our communities through relentless errata of models that may or may not be abusable.

          • Richard Mitchell

            Dealt with? Ahem, it’s a game, not a cult.

          • Apocryphus

            Oh… *slowly puts away black robes and candles*

        • Steven Hyche

          You mean someone lost his first game and rage quit? Sounds like the community dodged a bullet to me.

          • Xodis

            I actually imagine the player just watched his hundreds of dollars of “crap” get removed from the table and he just watched as there was nothing he could do to stop it. Since Drpx watched it, it could be safely assumed that at least SOMEONE was trying to give the guy advice…but it all boiled down to “Yeah….this is going to suck for you. Did you bring your own lube?”

            But yeah, its totally the Ork players fault am I right?!?!

          • memitchell

            I’m skeptical. Even without a codex, Orks ain’t no slouches. And, how do you return hundreds of dollars of models you already used in a game? Plus, losing one game ain’t reason to quit.

          • Steven Hyche

            Exactly, and its not like necrons are top of the meta.. sounds like a bs story or a very bad person to have in your community.

          • Drpx

            There was a second army, on the grassy knoll, played by Russians.

          • Richard Mitchell

            Fake news!

          • Xodis

            Well Im sure we could deconstruct the example to either make sense or to claim its total BS, but the point still stands.
            Lets assume the player still had hundreds of dollars of boxes left unopened he returned, while he tries to ebay the rest.
            I agree Orks are viable, but there are a lot of other factors that could contribute to this. He could have spent hundreds of dollars on just Ork bodies and have nothing to actually deal with the vehicles for example. Is this his problem? Of course, but how would he have known otherwise. The rule book itself encourages players to field what they want and what they love, not really preparing a player to be ready for a list like that.
            As for quiting after a single game, again I agree with you. I have played never been beaten so bad in 40K I wanted to quit, but I have taken a break because it can be ridiculous. No one (especially a brand new person) wants to spend all the time and effort (we can assume he did in order to even field Orks) it takes for an army just to see it completely decimated. Also remember Orks are a horde army, not everyone is prepared to lose models like they do, its why I dont play horde armies.

          • Steven Hyche

            Even pure ork green tide can deal with vehicles. Matter of fact they are probably better equiped for necrons then going anti vehicle due to quantum shield.

          • Xodis

            Ok, you’re obviously skipping over the point in an effort to prove the scenario “wrong”. We all know that Rock, Paper, Scissors is a major problem in this hobby and sometimes Rock hits Scissor too hard to want to keep playing. If a player follows the main rulebook and “plays what he wants” its too easy to get caught into this kind of trap. Thats not the players fault (especially a new player who doesnt know any better) that is a failure of the game design.

          • Steven Hyche

            Im not skipping over anything. You are trying to ram rod this story to fit your point and it doesnt. The fallacies in this arguement are abundant.

            You cant have a perfect game and the way GW wrote the rules are about as good as you can get. Which is talk to your opponent before the game and decide what level you want to play at. It seems like that part of the rule book was skipped in this story.

          • Xodis

            I dont need to force anything, its a pretty simple story and sadly all too common. There are also no fallacies in my argument.
            Sure, and what should the new guy have said to the Necron player? “Please dont play the army YOU want to play because I want to play the army I want to play?” Again, its a failure of the game system, and saying “the rules are as good as GW gives them” is complete garbage excuse.

          • Apocryphus

            What the ork player should have said was “Hey, this is my first game, can you teach me the ropes.” And what the Necron player should have said was “Sure, I’ll go a little easy on you so you can learn” and done so rather than driving him away from the game to score an easy win. Maybe the points are skewed strangely in the Necron list, but they absolutely got more expensive in the edition change, my old 1850 list comes out to 2100 now. Maybe Necrons need a bit of balance, but that’s not why the ork player left, his opponent’s crappy attitude was.

          • Xodis

            How do you know? If the Necron player had Barge spam ready (which I showed above to be much more points efficient then even a single blob of 30 orks), how do you know that the Necron player DIDNT take it easy on him?
            Ive played armies that just suck before, and I’ve even tried to help the player out by “forgetting” to charge with this unit, by reminding him about a weakness that he can exploit, etc… and even throughout ALL the hand holding they still got their face smashed because it just wasnt in the cards for that army. Have you ever experienced that? Has your $300+ investment and 40+ hours ever been made to look like a complete waste before? Its not a crappy attitude to realize that a potential money and time sink might not be worth it.

          • Apocryphus

            Actually yeah, pretty much every time I play Chaos. Pretty much every game since 5th edition with Tyranids. If barge spam was all that player had available, maybe they shouldn’t have played against a brand new ork player and instead sat with them and given them tips and advice. Or warned them and said, “Hey, my list is pretty brutal against yours, this might not be fun for you.” I have to say quitying after one game also feels like the ork player didn’t give the game a fair shake. One loss is hardly anything to purge an army over. I played WMH for a year and lost every single game before I started winning and getting into the meat of the game. Attitude has a strong influence on wargaming and a bad one can really tilt things into a deformed perspective. Are Necrons OP? Doesn’t seem like it, given what the current meta king is. Are orks UP? No idea, I only know one ork player and he wins quite often. Can we make a judgement that either of these armies need a huge errata based on a vet player with a strong list wrecking a blue blood who was just playing whatever he liked? Absolutely not at all. Chess is 100% balanced and a vet will stomp a noob every time. It would be a different case if this was what we saw on such a consistent basis that every single player played Necron Barge spam, but Necrons aren’t even that popular right now. This incident is entirely one of a new player losing through inexperience or a vet player taking advantage of them, not one of game balance.

          • Xodis

            So now the answer is “dont play that game”? What kind of game has situations where its better to just not play? Thats ridiculous. Also as a CSM player, I completely disagree. CSM always has some great options (especially in 5e) I just chose not to fall into the Dinobot trap that was 6e.

            I wouldnt quit after a single game either, but we dont know why he got into the game, maybe he just wanted a challenging game and doesnt give a crap about the lore…which is why it seems most people hold on like they do. Maybe he is use to other games with better balance and can see the obvious flaws in 40K?

            Im not defending a bad attitude, but from the information given we cant blame anything on bad attitudes. Its true there are bad winners and losers, but even the best of winners and losers can be disenfranchised by a game that ask for a lot and gives little.

            Again, you continue to make assumptions based on very little information. We dont know anything about the attitudes, wargame experience, or even the exact lists of the parties being discussed. What we do know is that a Barge SPAM list will more often than not destroy an Ork list, seeing as most of their skill/power comes from numbers. No single list should ever have an advantage over an entire army, and the Rock/Paper/Scissor style of gameplay is horrible.

            Jumping to the conclusion that Necrons are not OP since (some meta that has changed 4+ times) the release of a rulebook hasnt seen them taking over tournaments is also not a real sturdy basis. Especially when we go back and look at what actually IS being spammed in tournaments….hint its the same thing that is always spammed and makes up 90% of all armies, Imperials.

            False Equivalency. Chess is completely based on skill since both players play with the same army, in the same position, with the exact same board and moves available. Which is exactly why 40K is so imbalanced, but it doesnt help when the imbalance happens before models hit the table.

          • Apocryphus

            So essentially because I don’t know the whole story my argument is invalid and Necrons are indeed OP and that ork player quit because 40k is terrible? I’m sorry if I’m coming across as agressive here, and I know that it’s a pretty controversial opinion here on BoLS to believe that sometimes the player is at fault, but I’m not trying to attack anyone, I’m simply providing an alternative perspective. Also, as per “false equivalency” both 40k and chess are games of strategy played by 2 players attempting to defeat one another. If balance is the true root of the problem here, a similar game would allow any player of any skill regardless of experience to defeat any player of any skill regardless of experience. The argument that a brand new ork player quit after one game strictly because the game has terrible balance issues is simply not a well founded argument. I think attitude still comes into play here, because if that ork player was truly invested in the game, they would have stuck it through. Maybe that’s assumptive, but a person’s behavior tells an awful lot about them. Again, I’m not trying to attack anyone here, I’m just saying that these things all relate.

            As for your argument about Necrons not being OP based on the data we have at this time being unfounded, you’re absolutely right, but based on that same frame of logic, neither can they be declared OP. At this time we can only make inferences based on what we do have, and that’s barge spam is OP, because it shreds hordes, and hordes are on top. The meta is already shifting at that point.

            Also, I suck with Chaos, but I just love the army. So yeah, every time I play them it feels like a waste of money to me, but I just can’t stay away.

            I will defend the “don’t play that game” idea though. I personally avoid bad match ups that I know won’t be fun for me until I’ve developed the skill and confidence that I can put up a fight. If I do decide to play into a game I know won’t be fun, I make the most of it and learn. There’s no shame in turning down a fight you know can’t win, and by that I mean not lose so horribly that you may as well have skipped playing anyway.

          • Xodis

            Football is also a game of strategy…do you think it could also be accurately compared? Tic Tac Toe? No, despite the strategy in these games, the differences far exceed the similarities, and as such no real conclusion can be drawn from comparing them.

            How is it not well founded? We see on a regular basis the excuses made time and time again for GWs lack of focus or balance. We see time and time again the inconsistencies between armies and even between units in the same armies. Its even more true if you believe its possible that he played a more balanced game before hand (off the top of my head Xwing). Xwing compared to GW is comparing the modern age of technology to the Bronze age, the structure and balance in the rules are just that far apart.

            I never declared them OP, you introduced those terms, I simply stated that a Barge Spam list can, and obviously is a very hard Rock to any Ork Scissor list I can see in the Index.

            Ill never understand how you can defend that idea. Just the thought of it ever being “better” to not play a game is absurd to me, and is literally the opposite of why you should invest in a game in the first place. Im not going to toot my own horn and brag about being a good Chaos player, I love the army and have been successful against everyone I played and either win or closely lose…I can live with that. Early on I took a couple beatings, and I learned from them, and even against opponents I know I can spank, Ill change things up because a close game is more preferential to me (like give my 1Ksons some melee kills). At no point should I, or anyone, ever have to decline a game though simply because its not worth playing. That means that their is a very big problem with the game itself.

          • Apocryphus

            I’ll give you tic tac toe on a certain level, but football also has a balancing factor of physical fitness and experience, so I wouldn’t say it’s quite on the same playing field. 😉 I don’t see the situation you provided as an example of an unbalanced game system, and I guess you don’t see my counter argument as valid, so I will respectfully withdraw from the debate, because arguing gets people nowhere. I will say though, if it turns out it’s a real issue I will eat my crow. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t for a second believe that GW has created a well balanced game system. I’ve been very frustrated with the core rules since the intial glamor wore off, but I feel like most armies are pretty well dialed in. I don’t like the idea that permeates the player base that a winning list is OP, and I’m not saying that’s what you said, but situations like what you cited tend to breed that mentality. We need to wait to see if it truly is meta/fun deforming and if it is not working as intended, it’ll change.

            On the subject of skipping games, I do that in all wargames I play. If I go to WMH night and a Baldur2 double Wrath player wants a game, I will decline. I showed up to have fun, and if I’m not going to have fun participating, I won’t. I don’t think its wrong to believe that every game should be fun, and that you shouldn’t have to skip a game, I fully agree with you on that, but its the nature of playing a game against people, some people aren’t fun to play with. And I have no issues with you tooting your Chaos horn, I like hearing success stories and I can learn from them. I was just mentioning my trouble with them since you mentioned they are strong after I cited them as a possible waste of my money. They are very strong, I am just not strong with them.

          • Xodis

            I actually agree with a lot of that last statement. Most coaches say that football is 90% mental and 10% physical, if that’s just some mantra or a statement of fact I don’t really know, just what I grew up learning.

            No need to eat crow, GW can prove anyone wrong at any time, it’s just who they are. To be honest the first thought that crossed my mind was bad attitudes involved, as a necron player (yes I have way too many armies) I had to look up the Barge again just to get an idea and honestly I can’t see even a great ork player winning against that without a bit of luck. It’s just too perfect of an anti horde weapon. Which is why I hate the R/P/S paradigm that dominates a lot of 40K. Usually the more OP lists are a rock that obliterates Scissors and actually does fairly well against Paper.

            The shock value of 8e has worn off of myself as well, and there are too many problems I have with it currently

            I’m actually not asking for any changes currently, as until both armies get a codex it would be just a bandaid. Sadly though we keep seeing imbalances even with the new ‘dexs that are released.

            I’ve got a few good ones, usually including a buddy of mine having to change his entire tactics based on me DS Abaddon in the middle of his army and him spending 3 turns trying to blast him and failing lol.

            As for skipping a game because of unfun people, I fully agree with that, people can be the worst part of this hobby. They can also be the best too, so I usually give everyone a chance to prove me wrong lol.

          • Apocryphus

            Overlooking the barge again myself (I also have too many armies-5-) I could see an argument to reduce the Tesla Destructor to 4 shots rather than 8, much like the twin Devourer lost half its shots. I also will play anybody once, but eventually I have to pick and choose my battles. I can get maybe 1 game a week with my work schedule, so I have to make it count.

            As for dealing with barges, Lootas shake a decent stick at them. 170 points nets you 10 with between 10-30 shots. I’ve been on the receiving end of them on numerous occasions and they can pull their weight. They only need 4 shots to get through to drop the barge and the Necrons have to roll 1s to negate it. Not necessarily an elegant or reliable solution, but one that also brings decently heavy firepower to bear against other armies as well.

          • Xodis

            Yeah, them or Tankbustas would suffice, but even Lootas are a pretty expensive option coming in at 25 for 5 (Tankbustas being 5 for 45). He would need a full squad of 10 for each Barge taken and the guy is spamming them. So about 5-7 squads would suffice? Seems like the very definition of pay to win lol.

            I think the Barge itself is fine though, its the ability to field as many as you can afford that is the problem. That many shots is devastating to any army IMO. I was a fan of the FOC personally.

            Yeah, I average about the same. Usually skipping 1 weekend and trying to get 2 in the next.

          • Xodis

            Also, you seem to be forgetting that an Annihilation Barge (133 points) gets Twin Tesla Destructors (for free) that are 24″ Assault 8 S7 D1 and cause 3 hits on a 6+ hit roll…….That is better anti Horde than almost anything even the IG can throw at Orcs currently. Then they can take a Tesla Canon (13 points) that is Assault 3 S6 D1 and cause 3 hits on a 6+ hit roll. Possibly the best Necron rock to an Ork Scissor that ever existed. And then dont forget Liquid Metal repairs 1 wound each round, so any Barge that isnt destroyed just got stronger every round. 12″ move plus fly can make them play a game of leap frog.

            30 boys cost 180 a pop before anything else.

          • Richard Mitchell

            FOC was a good idea for a traditional wargame. Sometimes limitation offers freedom.

          • Xodis

            As an alternate example… In 6e I showed a friend the TAU (right after the giant robots came out) and as a big fan of most anime he jumped at the chance to play big robot lists. Of course that was a time when TAU was considered the most broken army imaginable and only Eldar could possibly challenge them. As a result of him playing a legal army that was able to do everything better than most other peoples armies….no one really wanted to play him. To no fault of his own, he followed the core rule of “play what you want” and as a result was shunned. Should he have spent MORE money and MORE time in order to play a weaker army he didnt like?

          • NagaBaboon

            Not enjoying it because the guy stood across from him gloating and womping you would be, I don’t know that that’s what happened but every clubs seen ‘that guy’, he may have been a bad loser but the necron player may equally have been uninteractive and/or a bad winner. That’d put me off.

          • Drpx

            He didn’t use the ones he’d just bought, duh.

          • memitchell

            Duh? Really? The post implied otherwise as a way to drive home the magnitude of his disappointment. Duh.

          • Richard Mitchell

            True the hobby is way to expensive for people not to take what they want and not have a fighting chance. Every game has a power bell curve, developers from other games admit, however the job of the game designer is to depress that bell curve as much as possible.

        • GrenAcid

          Why on earth noob was paried with spamer?
          Was it tournament?

        • LankTank

          Pffft one game and gave up? Sounds like its better he doesnt play

        • J Mad

          So… a player picking up an army he never played before lost once, and instead talking about what he could do better, he gave up and sold his models?

          Sounds like his problem not the game.

          It doesnt matter if the game is unbalanced, if you are not going to even try to better yourself, have fun with it, or just in general LEARN THE ARMY, then why even play a faction?

      • Well reading the comments, we learn that if you pick up a faction that doesn’t have optimal min/max tools, then you have “failed at list building”.

        • Muninwing

          i blame the M:tG deckbuilding for this… it’s an outside influence of optimization that doesn’t mesh well with the painstaking assembly, conversion, and painting of an army.

          if suddenly Iron Hands are gutted and now useless, so nobody takes them anymore, then the last three years i’ve spent on putting together and painting a good looking IH army is now wasted, and i need to sell it to buy someone else’s crappily-painted 3-color-standard Ultramarines and a Roboute so i can be one of twenty ugly smurf gunlines that scores middle-pack at the event. woohoo.

          it guts different creativity in the name of ego-stroking, and encourages all but the top players to not learn how to play well.

          if the army wins the games instead of the playing, then the game loses something.

          • I 110% agree with you friend. This is exactly my observation as well. Once Magic deckbuilding came into gamers’ lives in the mid 90s, I noticed everything it touched start turning to this … what I consider… garbage. Maybe thats because I was fortunate enough to be brought into tabletop gaming where skill at playing meant more than figuring out how to min/max a list. (of course back then games and events were GM’d so you couldn’t cherry pick your minmax list, you had to do well with what the GM assigned you)

            There is no difference now in card game deckbuilding, tabletop gaming, or video game esports. Its all about listbuilding and min/max efficiency.

            Skill on the table is ancillary. I’ve heard many times, and I know from my own experience as a tournament dude, that the main goal is to win before the game starts.

            I can’t emphasize how much I hate that.

          • Charles Keeling

            -The rub is this is a semi difficult game that has a good deal of investment to even get the players to the table. Demo games are functionally meaningless given the actual game we play vs it.

            -GM based refereeing is an altogether different concept. People want to genuinely win a game a skill yet cannot understand or grasp the concept they may get destroyed by someone else. It is very hard to actually give someone reps at a game while they are paying for models and have to create armies. Computer games bypass this typically with tutorials and free downloads, while card games have no set up aside from playing. This leaves new miniature players for 40k in a conundrum flanked by several more conundrums

            -New players have limited to no way to fact check their circumstances and often are still the mercy of who they get games in with. It is also far different to switch armies than to pick a different color in magic, much less a new league of legends player. Their opponents also try to gain whatever advantages they can as well and we are all are guilty of agressive reading of rules from time to time.

            – Gestalt learning means net building will never move. If it we’re a thing when I started in Rogue Trader then it would of mattered then and been prevelant. There is a seductive power and nakedness in actually seeing how you fare against an opponent.

          • Richard Mitchell

            40k should reinstitute FOC with different FOCs for different forces or even factions within forces.

          • GrenAcid

            My thoughts exacly, narrative play or death.

    • Defenestratus

      You speak of Goatboy.

  • Tarrox

    People using this logic forget one thing. The meta is this way because of broken stuff, not because people playing certain army list and focusing on certain play styles (like in warmahordes).

    Yes, even completely undisputed op rules create an meta and fixing this rules changes the meta as a result. That doesn’t mean people want the meta fixed by erratas but want balance and this changes the meta.

    Also of course people are overshooting a little bit with their demands here, but not overshooting results often in the problems not even addressed because: “Hey, only a few voices are heard so everything is fine, right?”. Basically people are still broken after the previous editions and are more vocal then not.

  • Scout Charger

    Just give this video a watch, it talk about pc games but o think it holds equally true for table top games.
    Especially the part of players optimizing the fun out of a game.

    https://youtu.be/7L8vAGGitr8

    • Drpx

      Foolish gaming humans. You are inherently self destructive and must be protected from yourselves.

    • DoctorBored

      This is perfect. I think that ‘Open Play’ is exactly gw trying to do this, trying to get players to relax in their list building and try different combos and playstyles. The goal for most players is simply ‘win as often as possible’, so you get people analyzing every little aspect of the game so that they can maximize the efficiency of every unit they have and only spend their money on the units and models that will best suit that purpose.

      Frankly, 8th is too young to have any sort of meta. Let’s give it a while longer before we go back to writing off half of a codexes datasheets as useless

      • ZeeLobby

        It’s definitely young. I think part of the issue was the claims GW was making prior to it’s release caused people to assume that it was going to be in a solid state from the start. I think they really should have offered matched play at a future time. Either that or playtested things better.

        • memitchell

          Playtesting is good, but overrated. It can tweak units and scenarios, iron out kinks, and discover flaws. But, it’s expecting too much for playtesters to “fix” everything. A playtester might determine Conscripts are too cheap. But, probably not. A designer would really want the playtester to determine the wording of the datasheet rules was convoluted or contradictory. A play tester is not going to comeback with game changing results like hordes are too powerful. Is not going to reset the entire rules set. That’s above his pay grade.

          • Richard Mitchell

            I think is that GW needs to catch up to the market. Mk II for Warmahordes had open playtest and it was awesome. They tried to do a GW style of playtesting with MK III and it was a mess, luckily the core rules were good since they are almost the same as MK II. Now PP has moved back to CID and double downed on crowdsourcing playtesting. I think GW should do the same.

        • Richard Mitchell

          When marketing meets realistic game design. Its a mess.

    • Nice link. Thanks for sharing. Absolutely. The hyper-optimization kills any game for me by distilling all of the choices down to a small handful.

      There are a ton of games out there where the listbuilding optimization garbage is not running amuk nearly half as bad as in 40k so I know it can be done.

      • Muninwing

        i honestly think that comp scores or some system of anti-optimization that grants alternate abilities would make the game far more fun.

        that way, if i really want to field my painstakingly painted X units that are terrible on the tabletop, i have a method of balancing them.

        i mean, supposedly, the idea of “points” would do the same, but we all know how bad GW is at that.

        • ZeeLobby

          Yeah. Points should be the answer, but I’d take comp as well.

        • GW Points are never balanced. If you make points actually balanced, list builder optimizer people would complain the game is now too boring because they can’t optimize.

          The problem with comp scores granting abilities are that unless you are using a math formula (which optimizers would decry anyway) then its subjective (which will make powergamers angry).

          • ZeeLobby

            Yeah. I mean there’s no perfect solution. Yet there’s definitely other games out there that do a better job with points, and I’ve never heard the “there’s no optimization” argument. Ofcourse it might be easier to accept a tighter point system if you’ve never experienced the GW dumpster hole point system before it.

    • Just a player

      ~I have an idea lets give players who play with stylish armies a small bonus like +1 to hit or I don’t know free transports

  • benn grimm

    Gw don’t seem to particularly care about ‘the meta’ beyond making each codex slightly better than the last, they use errata to fix mistakes/unintended rules interactions. Which is a good thing, infinitely preferable to what went before; i.e. tumbleweeds and lots of different house rules/interpretations depending on where you play.

    • Gorsameth

      I would say GW’s swift intervention against the Gman Stormraven lists speaks to the contrary.

      • ZeeLobby

        But where’s the conscripts answer? It honestly feels like they’ll wait just long enough for everyone to go buy it before nerfing it.

        • Righ TingTong

          they should simply change that mortal wounds are the only wounds that can jump targets. there is no sense in laser weapons that can penetrate tanks, but cant pierce guardsmen. at least change it to “if its double the strength, it can pierce targets, dealing wounds to another row of units” or something like that. the hit scaling is horrible in this edition.

          • Muninwing

            i actually love that idea. it would also help Leman Russes and other blasts do anti-horde duty like they used to while not being inordinate.

          • Koonitz

            While this is how Age of Sigmar works, I feel it would be a risky, if not disastrous rule to bring into 40k. It would have to be heavily restricted.

            The reason for this is, simply, why bring a heavy bolter when a lascannon can do better? Why fire a frag missile at infantry when a krak missile does just as much damage at a higher strength?

            You nullify a lot of weapons and make anti-tank weapons king of the sandbox.

          • Muninwing

            it means that you’d have to add another rule that determines when a weapon can in fact do more…

            this was supposed to be the rules-lite edition.

            honestly, adding “blast” as a rule that granted piercing vs any unit with more than 10 models, as well as adding another d3/d6 shots against units with 20 or more models, would work.

            but that would work best in a game designed to have standardized USRs that make all mechanics similar and thus easier to use… not the newfangled keyword and datasheet system where every weapon does things differently and each one has to list out its special abilities…

          • Righ TingTong

            good thought and yes you are right!
            maybe they could balance it with some kind of CHANCE on piercing those targets. a whole squad of marines can still deal more dmg to something like guardsmen, with 10 bolter hits, while a las cannon is having a little bit of a swing factor. Hitting on 4+ , having D6 dmg with just one possible hit is not really that OP imo.

            in this edition, a bunch of conscripts hit harder than any anti tank weapon, just by bringing the numbers. maybe my approach is too realistic, imagining a bunch of AK47s trying to destroy a tank.

        • Votic

          Or give every faction something with sniper, though I play deathguard and fearless conscripts don’t scare me with pox blob.

          • ZeeLobby

            The thing is there should really be multiple answers to each problem. Sure there will always be the best option, but varying options across factions should be the way to create faction diversity. As soon as a single weapon becomes mandatory, like snipers, your taking that diversity/choice out of the game. I agree it would be a quick fix, but i’d rather see the game re-balanced through unit points/rules changes rather than just giving everyone the tool they need.

      • Drpx

        Primaris were coming out the next week.

      • benn grimm

        I’d say that was an unintended rules interaction/mistake which they corrected after it was highlighted, rather than an attempt to shift a meta.

  • Crevab

    No thanks I’d rather GW try and tweak the rules to less favor certain army types rather than have to list tailor

    • Chad Underdonk
      • Crevab

        Yeah, kinda a dumb idea to think GW could make the rules better :/

        • Chad Underdonk

          Failing to adapt is adapting to failure.

          • Crevab

            Why yes, I am adapting to 8th 🙂

          • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

            I’ve adapted by not playing it!

          • Chad Underdonk

            Well there are several other games out there that are excellent and deserve more love. Drop Zone Commander is one example.

          • DZC is a great game. And list building garbage definitely not as prevalent. Its a nice feeling to be able to construct an army where the points actually are the points value, and you don’t get to be “clever” and make 2000 points actually worth 4500 points.

          • Knight_of_Infinite_Resignation

            I’m getting into Terminator Genisys funnily enough. Unbelievably cool rules mechanics (by Alessio Cavatore), great minis and now available ridiculously cheaply.

          • Karru

            So here’s the thing, what you are calling “adapting” is what most people are calling “list tailoring”.

            I am pretty sure one can make a list that completely destroys the list that won the Heat Tournament. Here’s the kicker though, I might beat that list, but all the other “generalised” lists would most likely destroy me.

            It is not adapting when you have to focus on countering a specific list. The saying “If you can’t beat them, join them” is very much real in 40k, because the best way to increase your chances of winning is to just go with the most powerful list as usually those lists are meant to face all opponents.

            Now comes the major issue why I don’t do it. I don’t like to play with extremely boring armies like that. An army made up of 3-4 choices spammed over and over again. I want to play a mixed army of multiple different units, something that was very much possible in 5th edition, but isn’t the case any more. It is not a case of adapting, it is just the case of keeling over and just accepting that you NEED to follow the Meta, otherwise you are going to be crushed.

          • ZeeLobby

            Yeah. 8th is totally balanced as long as your allowed to bring your whole collection to events and each round involves a pre-game discussion to decide lists.

          • Chad Underdonk

            Admittedly my statements are more about generic store play than tournament play. “Oh it’s the Death Guard player, I better be prepared for their common tactics”.

            Not quite list tailoring, because I have no clue what they are actually bringing, just an idea of what they tend to favor, and the tactics they like. I also tend to advise / bring balanced lists in any case because sometimes they bring something new or an entirely different army (I do this frequently so my opponents do not build an anti-X army to table me in turn 2).

            With a tournament list you just have to accept that you are going to be having some bad match ups. Develop a good all comers list with solutions for most problems, and understand the current tactics and strategies and lists so you can recognize and respond to them quicker. That still doesn’t mean you’re going to win against skew lists…but skew lists typically have their own weaknesses that are exploitable and prevent their continual winning.

            Of course that may vary depending on whether there really is just a few powerful armies out there because of GWs purposeful failure to balance for marketing choices. I’ve yet to see that as a true and feature of 8th though. Most often that is a perception issue, not an actual insurmountable obstacle…or else why bother playing tournaments at all?

          • ZeeLobby

            Pretty sure conscripts is a skew list that plays well into almost everything though. It has minimal weaknesses, while the list you would need to play into it to beat it would have massive weaknesses against the rest of the field. That’s when there’s an issue.

          • Chad Underdonk

            Sorry, as a long term guard player I think of conscripts as a joke or gimmick. They are not as good as their equivalent in Guardsmen. All they can do is soak wounds and hold ground, they certainly don’t do much to dish it out themselves.

            Fluff wise they should never get regimental bonuses, nor should they be a common sight.

          • ZeeLobby

            I mean I agree, they’re broken right now, and sadly, are great for winning scenarios. I’m also not a fan of their lasguns wounding landraiders, but that’s a whole other issue.

          • David

            Snipe out the comissar and they die pretty quick to vanguard. It’s mostly marine players who have a problem with them but the real issue is that their playing with marines which are underpowered

          • ZeeLobby

            I mean except when you don’t have snipers. Then I’m not sure what your option is. Orks for example. Or god forbid you want to play Dark Eldar without Eldar, lol. It needs a fix.

          • David

            Oh if your orks don’t bother

            You want a bunch of special characters buffing a hoard of boys and just run at them and bash them in. When I’ve run pure guard orks is one of the few armies to 20/0 me

            Pretty much like the fluff

          • Dennis J. Pechavar

            This isn’t a case of Peanut Butter in my Chocolate, Dark Eldar are delicious enough without Craftworlders. IMO.

          • David

            My paper can’t beat these scissors lists but I can’t take a rock that will beat the scissors, because all the paper list’s will then beat me- so scissors is broken and GW need to fix it.

          • Karru

            Ah yes, I was waiting for this comment. It is always lovely to see people make these comments, because it is clear that you don’t get the thing I am saying, but you do you, man. <3

          • David

            I get where you come from I don’t agree. Last edition A generalised list always leaned towards AV now a generalised List needs to lean towards anti ingantry to help you manage hoards.

            Last edition my competitive army was a 2 IK warcon it was prescriptive with almost no choice in list construction. My non comp was BA deathcompany pretty much as perscriptive

            Now I run 14 different unit types in an AM Admech combo list and most of the admech is not what I ran in the warcon.
            so far its not lost and I’ve not encountered a similar list

            unfortunately I had to shelve my IK and BA because their not effective that’s adaptation some things got terrible to use some got better

          • Muninwing

            if you have to shelve an army because you cannot play it in the current edition and meta, then the edition and rules — and often with GW, the points-balance — have failed you as a player.

          • Muninwing

            but i want to play pencil, which only wins against paper. and i’ve spent the last year solely on a pencil army, and i do not have access to the sharpness or bluntness of other armies.

            now i’m wholly screwed because i decided to invest in pencil back in an earlier edition when they were better, but now the regular meta makes my graphite special abilities and my eraser units utterly useless.

          • David

            then play pencil but don’t be surprised when the scissors shred you

          • Muninwing

            this is how i know you’re missing the point.

            i am a customer. i bought pencil. but because of your need to “shred” me, i can either play and consistently lose… which is not fun for anyone except man-babies who need to prop up their fragile egos

            … or i quit playing. now i’m no longer a customer. and i’m not part of the club. and i’m no longer supporting my LGS.

            it’s actually bad for everyone that there’s no effort to fix the problem.

            and it’s gotta get boring, only ever playing scissors and letting your army do all the work instead of really playing. because if the only possible outcomes are
            – win vs paper
            – lose vs rock
            – win vs anything else
            then what’s the point of even playing when it’s already decided?

            i have better things to do with my time than go through the charade.

          • David

            Or you adapt recognise pencil was good in 7th but the mechanics of 8th change that and so you need to try a different approach with different units as that same style is history

            I can still win admech games but not with kataphrons and knights. Now I use dragoons and dunecrawlers

            it’s a lot more complex than rock paper scissors and yes player skill plays a big role. The meta isn’t static you need to adapt that keeps it interesting. I don’t see the problem but then I don’t play the same thing all the time.

          • Muninwing

            you’re talking pennies and i’m talking dollars.

            a single unit not working in the new rules is frustrating. a player can deal with that. either they don’t field the disadvantaged unit, or they do at their own penalty.

            but if you have a whole army solely made of that unit and similar ones… now you cannot play effectively. so if bikes were terrible, all the White Scar and Ravenwing players — particularly those who have no other army to fall back upon — get screwed.

            and because of some inflated ideas, the company should not fix what is a clear issue with the pricing and.or rules of that unit? no.

            if the goal of the game is to have a functional points system to lend credibility and balance to its play, then that point system needs to be modified if it is not working correctly. and if other rules are incorrect, then they need to be fixed as well.

          • Muninwing

            you should be able to adapt on the table with a unified and capable force, not have to create specific lists to play specific other lists.

          • Xodis

            THIS^^^^

            This is what makes a game and proves “skill”. Anyone can tailor a list and win R/P/S style, but winning on the table is what is fun.

          • Chad Underdonk

            That is absolutely the idea of a well balanced list. But what constitutes well balanced shifts from time to time. Going forward in the time of horde hammer well balanced is going to mean the ability to degrade hordes at the same time as eliminating the killy stuff. That is the new normal.

            Skew lists have always tried to throw too much of X into the mix to try and make the parts of your army that are designed to deal with Y and Z less useful. You just have to hope that your generalship and ability to handle X can carry the day when facing those lists.

          • Muninwing

            i’m ok with shifts that come from reimaginings of the army, as the codex model of release is prone to. it means you don’t get locked into the same strategies.

            i’m ok too with choosing an army with an inherent imbalance. my WHF army of choice was pre-8th Beasts of Chaos. they excelled in the movement phase, and could run circles around nearly anyone else… but did not hit hard and needed to use that speed to position or combocharge to win. it was an army of momentum that had certain weaknesses, and needed to be played certain ways to be effective — which is why they were not terribly popular.

            compare that to the 7th ed Tau ability to overwatch chargers of other units, and their skills that buffed their overwatch shooting. take their disadvantage — lacking combat prowess — and effectively negate it by its interaction with another rule. suddenly, they are losing a disadvantage but still paying less points per model than they should. that creates imbalance, which creates the meta.

            it’s not the same thing.

    • David

      I thought they did that they tweaked to less favour elites

  • Gorsameth

    Please enlighten us with this great way to counter hordes when people are already talking extremely efficient anti infantry weapons (like assault cannon razorbacks). And what about the armies that don’t have access to such tools?

    It takes 54 Heavy Bolter (str5 ap -1) shots to kill 20 Conscripts for a Marine player (2/3 hit, 2/3 wound, 1/6 save)
    43 Assault cannon shots.
    68 bolter shots.

    that’s a hell of a lot of shots your putting into chaff while guard are removing 1/3 of your army per turn themselves.

    Yes something will always be best, and being the best is not a reason to call for GW to take action but its about dealing with outliers and bringing the relative power of units closer together.

    ps.
    Rather then change conscripts I would change the Commisar so their terrible leadership actually matters.

    • SWISSchris

      I’m not interested in playing 8th (prefer older editions, but still buy newer models) but do guardsmen seriously still have a save against a heavy bolter? No armour save modifiers these days?

      • Crevab

        Heavy Bolter is -1, so the grunts get that 6+

      • Drpx

        AP negating saves was replaced with applying modifiers. Most AP 5 or 4 weapons now only apply a -1 to your save.

        So hordes actually got more survivabilty while elites became easier to kill. Also, boltguns have no AP now because Primaris.

        • SWISSchris

          And I’m frequently in 2nd ed where a bolter was -1 to your save and orks and guard went from 6+ to dead lol.

          No wonder hordes are doing so well. And by amazing coincidence hordes need a lot of models, and games workshop sells those models. Such a coincidence (!) Just as planned.

          • Dennis J. Pechavar

            Also the fact that one of the better ways to deal with hordes were template weapons…which aren’t in 8th.

          • Muninwing

            hordes should all have the USR that makes them more susceptible to blasts…

            except that blasts and USRs are no more. because that was a great design idea.

          • Koonitz

            One rule I read, and liked, for this was simply “For every 10 models past the first (ie: 11-20, 21-30) in the target unit, this weapon receives a cumulative +1 modifier to hit.” That way, a battle cannon could fire at a blob of 21+ conscripts and be hitting on a 2/3/4, depending on how crippled it is.

            I suspect plasma cannons will still require a balancing effect to ensure they still overheat in these cases.

          • Muninwing

            the bonus could take effect after the overheat… so the 1 would still have consequences.

          • Koonitz

            That’d be difficult because, right now, a modifier to hit (say with the Chaos psychic power “Prescience”) does take effect before the overheat, so you’d have two identical effects that interact differently (causing some confusion). Though, since the rule is, technically, stand-alone, it could work. “This bonus does not impact whether a roll of a 1 to hit causes the weapon to overheat.” or some such.

            As for flamer weapons, and those that auto-hit, you could possibly add a “This weapon may reroll one of the dice to determine how many shots it gets for every 10 models past the first.” In this case, a flamer hitting an 11 man unit could reroll the d6. A frag cannon could reroll one of it’s 2d6 (or both, if it hits a 21+ man unit). A Warhound’s inferno cannon would require a 41+ model unit to reroll all 4 of its dice.

    • David

      Marines in 8th = tyranids in 7th
      There is almost no extremely efficient list because marines arn’t that efficient. You are trying to make one of the weakest armies in the meta fight one of the strongest builds.

      Shooting against conscripts assuming RF range
      2 vanilla tac squads 130 pts 5.9 dead conscripts
      4 man HB Dev 105 pts 5.07 dead conscripts
      Razorback assault cannon storm bolter 102pts 6.82

      So you have identified it’s not going to work… however luckily for you marines come with the imperium key word which comes with the option to take allies so let’s see if any of them are more efficient

      3 skitarii vanguard squads 135 points 10 dead conscripts
      3 HB HWT 126 pts 10.56 dead conscripts
      IQ 2 acolyte squads with storm bolter 120pt’s 10.7 dead conscripts

      Allies are nothing new and yes sometimes purist armies don’t work but that’s an artificial restriction

      • Gorsameth

        If I’m going to play a different army why am I not playing Guard myself?

        The point with calls to tone down Guard is to bring codexes close together in power so you can play what you enjoy and get a good game in regardless, telling people to move to a different codex defeats the entire point people are making.

        And no Marines are not weak in 8th at all considering tournament results.

        • David

          Marines are weak otherwise they wouldnt be moaning about conscripts. Most of their strategies involveing tabling their opponents and if they can’t do that they lose. So yes they get good results against elite lists but we are only going to see more hoards

          • Muninwing

            this means that the game is failing. not the player.

    • King Renegado

      Brother, if you have killed 20 conscripts, you have effectively neutralized the threat. (They can only come in units of 20-30 now.) You don’t need to kill ALL of them.
      And if you assault them after, they are done for.
      If you are worried about conscripts, orks, gene cults, chaos cultists, and tyranids must be a nightmare.

      Tactic: use nipers to kill commissar. No snipers? Prioritize targets. Conscripts only hit on 5s… With S3 weapons. And only pass orders on a 4+. No competent guard player is gonna waste orders on a BS5+ squad that will only work half the time.

      The conscripts are a distraction, and if you lose 1/3 of your army a turn, it Ain’t to 5+ lasguns shots.

  • Chad Underdonk

    What I hear at the shop every day…

    “My army is X.”

    “I don’t have a solution for problem Y that the internet came up with!”

    “I know you’re trying to help, but the problem is bigger than your ideas because the tournament players…”

    “They need to change Z because my army is X and I shouldn’t have to change it!”

    “No! yYour experience and ideas are irrelevant. The sky is falling!”

    The next day “OMG, have you heard about problem F!?!?!?”

    “Remember, my army is X!”

    “F is so broken, it is like Y but way worse!”

    “No! X should not have to change to fit theory craft Y or F!”

    “NO! It doesn’t matter than Y or F aren’t in the local meta, GW must fix it”

    “No! your ideas are irrelevant. The sky is falling!”

    “X should be totally competitive against all the tactics and army combinations past and future!”

    “Why would I change my list or tactics? This game should be balanced for everything already!”

    http://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/8b0b55f0a13355e1a372a09710e1d6a17da1454a4feecff33fccd44048bf2a13.jpg

    • Crevab

      what is this I’m reading?

      • Chad Underdonk

        What a shop owner hears every day from the impassioned but unresponsive defeatists who choose not to learn tactics, target selection, or adaptation to new challenges.

        • Crevab

          You might want to edit it so it’s less gibberish

          • Chad Underdonk

            From my computer screen it looks like dialogue should. If you are viewing it on a mobile device or are unfamiliar with dialogue your mileage may vary. 😀

          • Crevab

            Soooo, it’s two people? And they’re both just talking to the room? Because they definitely aren’t interacting in any way

          • Chad Underdonk

            It is one person complaining and responding to (not typed out) solutions while not really considering the offered solutions.

          • Crevab

            haha, what? why would you do this?

          • Chad Underdonk

            It is a “real life” representation of the very attitude the author of this article is referring to. Players demanding responsiveness and balance to their perceived problems at a thousand miles an hour. All while being unwilling to consider or make changes to the very things that they actually have control over.

        • vlad78

          I’m sure you had plenty of ways to deal with superfriends, broken deamon lists with rerollable 2++ saves, grav spam, librarius spam, invisibility spam, knight armies without having to use a broken list yourself back in 7th.

          • Chad Underdonk

            Sometimes the best response is to not take it so seriously and throw out something you’ll enjoy whether your opponent is playing “for serious” or not.

            But then again, I’ve played most every army (excluding Necrons) at one point or another since 2nd edition and typically gravitate to armies that I can enjoy even when the odds are stacked against me.

            For instance who cares if my orks lose? They’re just going to come back. And when they do win it is ded fun to administer a right propah stompin’.

            Or when playing my Valhallans…do the best fight I can with what I field…it isn’t like the Guard always has a fair fight against their enemies…or spamming something ridiculous for fun (like 26 Ogryn backed by Preachers) just to see if I can throw a fluffy wrench into their math hammer lists.

          • Karru

            Yes, but, hear me out, but what if those “ridiculous” lists would have a shot at winning? I mean, sure your 26 Ogryns backed by Preachers would never work against a balanced list, but imagine if you could take a themed list and win if you were just skilled enough? That is what most people are saying.

            The problem with 40k since 6th edition is that GW has made it very clear they have no intentions of balancing the game. They release a codex to skew the balance to increase sales with that army, only to release the next codex slightly more powerful and so on.

            Since 6th, it is no longer a matter of “which style of list you are playing?”, it is a matter of “which army are you playing?”, which is a problem. Basically your “adapt” policy is literally the same as saying someone who plays Orks to switch over to Space Marines or do one very specific list and hope the opponent doesn’t just list tailor against it once they know how they’ll be facing.

            There is a difference between not wanting to “adapt” and wanting even a chance to win if you want to play something that isn’t the standard.

          • Chad Underdonk

            Not at all. I’m saying use the armies that you love. Adapt with them. Some armies are particularly unsuited to face some strategies, but are strong against others. If the tournament meta is truly dominated by just a handful of lists (and 8th is too new to actually proclaim that) I personally would either not play, or would choose not to play on their terms by bringing a spoiler list that isn’t intended to win, but rather to crush those opponents who favor certain strategies.

            But then again, I accept the fact that I’m not going to gain any validation by being 1st at a wargame. Nor am I going to lose any face by coming in dead last. I play for my own enjoyment, not for prestige or prize.

          • David

            If you deliberately take bad unit’s like space marines you should struggle. You have failed at list construction. That is not the same thing as saying that their is only one way to win. I have seen a lot of different liststyles do well at tournaments and other than spacemarines who should really be part of all imperium armies no one needs to change army

          • Or what most people expect, and one reason they won’t touch GW games, is that there shouldn’t be “bad units”. Everything should be viable in some context.

          • Muninwing

            this is crap.

            if i take “bad units” then that means there are units that are bad, which defeats the point of having them as an option. so they should either be made less useless, or cut from the codex.

            if by “bad” you instead mean “good at what they were designed for, but not part of a bigger synergy” then that too begs the question… why are they still there?

            if, on the other hand, you take a competent army with non-extremized solutions to most general ideas, you shouldn’t get trounced by a gimmick list of the week that is only beatable when you play a different gimmick list of the week designed for the purpose.

          • David

            No I mean not every unit has to be competitive and some units can be less efficient/effective than other comparible unit. These units are bad as in my points would be better spent on something else if my aim was to win. Would I take them at a competitive event never.

            Would I play them against my mate Ross who is terrible at the game as a way of quietly handicapping myself so we have more balanced fun game (and some look cool as a bonus) yes I do.

            However I know when I run my BA or my kataphron’s im disadvantageing myself – that doesn’t matter. I accept that I have chosen to play bad units and therefore should be beaten what I won’t do is take them then complain if I lose.

          • Muninwing

            if a unit is terrible, then why is it terrible?

            if it is too expensive for what it does, then why can’t that be fixed?

            if it is a ‘self-handicapping unit” then why does the unit itself have the ability to negatively affect how you play? why should it? that can be done by action.

            a good player with a bad list can lose to a bad player with a good list. i’ve seen it many times. if that’s the case, then listbuilding is more important than actually playing the game, which for a game is a sad state of affairs. but it’s fixable.

          • David

            Could be fixed yes does it need to be look at other games is every magic card good are all AOS units played equally what about malifaux masters? If its too expensive for what it does don;t take it.

            that’s not a problem a good player with a good list still beats a bad player with a good list

          • Muninwing

            i don’t actually understand what you’re trying to say… are you saying that there was a doubt that a playing skill matters at the top end? what does that have anything to do with this topic?

            not every unit or card will be “good” for every role. that’s also not up for argument. but if a unit has no use, is unfieldable due to bad pricing or ineffective use, then why is it still a part of the army? it can either be fixed or cut.

          • David

            If you don’t have the option you don’t have the option that leads to homogeneous lists.

            If you have the option good players can field them as a handicap and bad players may take them not recognising how bad they are.

            Also some players like to field cool looking units even if they have no place ruleswise

          • Muninwing

            older than 6th. game imbalances caused me to quit playing in 5th. remember the ward-dexes, like the GK?

          • ZeeLobby

            shhhh. Wibbling could beat anything. If you mention broken lists 3 times he’ll show up and tell you your bad at the game for not being able to beat it with pure scouts because “tactics”.

        • Drpx

          So…..how does an assault army adapt to a gunline wrapped in 90 disposable models that are immune to morale and can fall back after each charge and let you get shot again?

          • Chad Underdonk

            Each army is going to have a different solution.

            My speed freaks do it by having enough shooting and mobility to break them up into chunks.

            My blood axes do it by matching their numbers and using “deep strike” to disrupt key units.

            My Valhallans do it by moving into 12″ under the cover of mass mortar fire and out shooting them.

            My Foot-Dar have a lot of bodies and are really mobile. I haven’t fought a horde with them yet, but I’m confident I can give as good as I get against the type of list folks are complaining about.

            With Dark Eldar I would rely on Scourges taking a hard flank and gobbling up the army piece by piece.

            I’m not currently fielding a Power Armor army, so it would just be speculation what I would do.

          • David

            You would lose your right not to take power armour

  • Randy Randalman

    Wroooooong. Powerful lists are one thing. But when a unit or even an entire army (5th edition Grey Knights, or 7th Ed WHFB Demons, for example) does everything better, in every phase, more reliably and with more resilience for cheaper than everyone else, there is no cycle that figures out how to beat it. Erratas are necessary while we’re in the early, growing stages of 8th to prevent those little things that slipped through play-testing. There is tons of room for innovation, but we want clean factions all with their codices out at the same time. That’s quick and messy at first, but we will get to the omelet.

    Erratas and FAQ’s are necessary for clarity, and to ensure a wealth of options aren’t discouraged because of some big, bad nasty that just mathematically beats most things before dice are rolled.

    Oh, and THIS IS WHAT WE ASKED FOR. Now we’re getting it, and it’s fantastic, and people are whining. Every army is going to have an updated codex in the same edition, and close together. That’s never happened. Every army will get FAQ’s and erratas to ensure they are balanced and clear. That’s never happened. For right now, it feels rapid-fire, but it will settle down once all the books are out. Then we can focus on an ever evolving meta and model releases.

    • Crevab

      Who are you and what have you done with Randy?

      • Karru

        Well, let’s be honest, that is more or less your typical Randy talk. Believing that GW would be able to or even are planning to make 40k balanced is one of the most laughable ideas I have read today.

      • ZeeLobby

        Well he’s defending GW’s current practice of FAQs and Erratas. It the defense of GW that matters above all else.

  • kobold

    GW should take example from companies who know how to manage balance in a competitive game environment, like WotC in Magic. They have a set of very strict rules based on which a card can get banned or limited, besides that players need to balance the meta themselves.
    And it works, the continuous balance of meta is happening all the time. If several tournaments get dominated by one type of a deck, then people build decks to counter the one that dominates. The same can happen in w40k, instead of crying for GW help whenever somebody comes out with new ultimate army setup. All GW should take care of, is that players can find scissors for a paper, then rock for the scissors etc.

    • ZeeLobby

      Yeah. You lost GW at “banned or limited”. GW wants you to buy 12 assassins. And you hit the nail on the head, it’s that not all factions have a rock for the scissors, especially when the rock seeking faction is a single faction, and the scissors wielding one has 12 ally options. These are the things people want GW to fix. These are the things people complain about. If everyone had the options to beat the IG conscript list WHILE being able to play well into the rest of the meta, it wouldn’t be an issue. And tournament dodging shouldn’t be an answer to that.

      • kobold

        I never said GW must copy WotC approach 1:1. It’s about consistency and strict rules, not necessarily banning. The rock – scissors – paper thing needs to be applied on army design level, and then you only react when somebody invents a game breaker that doesn’t have a counter.
        Because naturally there will be top factions and top armies on tournaments, no way you can balance it to the extend where every one has equal chances.
        And bear in mind, this only applies to the competitive tournament scene, which is a fraction of the entire meta. Casually you should have almost no restrictions additional to the ones from rulebook.

        • ZeeLobby

          I know. I agreed with you. Haha. Some restrictions would be good for the game, and there definitely are things currently which have poor counters. Perfect balance is also an illusion, but for example the conscript list goes beyond just being a high tier army.

          Now I disagree that this only matters for tournament play in a 1v1 competitive wargame. Even casual players want to enjoy a close game, a narrow victory, or tactics and skills. We need to end this fallacy that balance and tight rules are only beneficial for one or the other. I’ve seen just as many casual players leave the game after struggling to win. It may shock some but casual players like winning as well :D.

      • Tournament dodging isn’t really an answer anyway because often the tournament meta seeps into and contaminates the casual and campaign games too.

        • ZeeLobby

          Yeah. Too true. I just feel like people assume that avoiding this stuff is easy, when really it requires a group dedicated to actively avoiding it, which I’ve honestly never seen.

          • I’ve been trying to keep the campaigns I do avoiding this. It always leads to some rage and hurt feelings and nasty arguments because gaming-culture has become intoxicated by this.

            If it stayed in the tournament hall I’d not say a word. But when I organize a campaign day and say “please keep your tournament filth out and build a more all comer army” and they show up with tournament filth and get angry and say that tournament lists are how you play the game properly… it becomes very frustrating.

            And the thing is there is no haven from it. Every game has this due to gamer-culture today.

          • ZeeLobby

            I mean eve n pre-internet influence, there are still always competitive people in every group. I don’t think it’s ever something you can completely avoid. It helps if the game is well-balanced though.

          • Twenty years ago we had tournaments which let powergamers powergame. And then we had campaign events that were public where GMs approved lists or provided a force for players to use.

            These were acceptable as we had events that catered to everyone.

            Today trying to do a GM style campaign brings nasty gamer-politics.

            You are right that powergamers will always powergame and always have. I don’t think thats bad if its in the right context and place.

            The problem is when its everywhere and there’s nowhere to go to escape it.

            There are no events where playing the game is more important than listbuilding today.

          • ZeeLobby

            Honeslty. There’s probably some cost concerns as well. Previously there used to be restrictions on units. You could buy 3 ravagers, but you’d never buy 4. If you went from a competitive event where taking 3 was a no-brainer, and then were told to play only one or two in a fun event, you wouldn’t have to spend $100s to fill that gap. I never batted an eye at dropping a CAD down to a highlander list, but if I bought a fast-attack spam list filling 6 slots, it’s a burden.

            Now if you take Storm Raven spam to a tournament in order to place well, and then get told you can only bring one to your local campaign, that’s a whole lot of purchasing and changing of your list to fit in. The disparity between options is just ridiculously large now.

            There may also be some credit to the fact that 40K has simply just grown. The type of people who attend store events are just more likely to be competitive these days, as they already attend for their Infinity, Malifaux, WMH competitive events, etc.

            It’s definitely a different landscape.

          • Yes thats very true. A powergamer will buy a powergamed force. He’s not going to buy unoptimal models to play in a campaign.

            But at that point for me, that just means the powergamer doesn’t belong in a non powergamed event.

            And gamer-culture is definitely heavily slanted toward the powergaming model today, starting around the mid 90s when Magic the Gathering became a force and shown on ESPN.

    • Jonathan Ellsworth

      Actually, Magic works quite similar to Warhammer in many aspects, but they have a more drastic solution. At a grand prix, you only use the last 2 blocks, making the card selection quite limited, of the whole pool of cards you have a lot of bad ones, and only a few reliable options for a tier 1 deck. And even if the meta was broken, the next year one of the blocks gets out and problem solve, a new chance for players to exploit their current range.

      • ZeeLobby

        Honestly I think it’d be a pretty cool way to build a miniature game. It’s just never an option when a single model can cost $25/$30/$40/$125. Itd be a cool way to advance the games story as well.

    • Muninwing

      i can go into a store and spend $100 on cards to build a perfect deck… or really just rade what i have for little actual investment. now i can play in tournaments.

      but if i’m going to take the time to assemble, convert, and paint an army, i don’t want to have to sell or trade it just to have the new netlist i need to defeat the current meta-ruler.

      the two games and their components are incomparable.

      • kobold

        1. Perfect tournament deck will cost you at least 500 USD if not more. And that’s only standard, in older formats we’re talking 1k USD easily. And then a sudden ban of one card makes it price dropping from e.g. 100 USD to 5 USD. But that isn’t really that important because point 2.
        2. You’re right, those games are different and making copy-paste of WotC approach won’t work, that’s obvious. My point was that GW can learn from them, not blindly copy what they do.
        3. Nobody is saying certain models should be banned from tournaments, this is fundamentally bad idea. But how about applying some limitations on certain OP army setups? And that’s on tournaments only, of course.

        There is plenty of options, the point I’m making is that GW could learn a lot from other games with the competitive factor.

      • Red_Five_Standing_By

        100 bucks?

        Hahaha. No, sorry. Standard is as cheap as it has been for a long time and even the cheapest deck is still $162. The best decks are all over 200.

        • Muninwing

          to be fair, it’s been decades (plural) since i played. i was around at the tail end of Arabian Nights, bought three packs as a curiosity, then discovered the rest of the game. i got out after Ice Age, and never looked back.

          then again, that’s one of the reasons the M:tG mentality invading 40k bothers me so much, similar to why AoS going more WM/H style than WHFB — i bought in to play one kind of game, and because of external pressures and changing business models i suddenly do not have the tools to reliably play the game i want without putting in a lot of extra time and effort. and the tools i have to play the game are not better ued for a game that i do not necessarily want to play.

  • ZeeLobby

    This can both work, and be a horrible idea, depending on the starting point. If the game is already relatively well balanced, then allowing stronger lists to persist is not such a bad idea (WMH). If the games disparity of internal/external balance is already massive (40K), or some factions have access to hundreds of more units than others (Imperium vs Orks), then it’s only going to result in negative play experiences, and it’s time to bring things back in line.

    Now, what’s important is that this can be done as to not invalidate any player purchases, by simply adjusting the rules/points of even just a single unit to prevent the OP combination (something GW seems hesitant of), or it can be done by adjusting a core rules to prevent the option which can end up creating new holes, or unintentionally crippling single weaker combos (which GW has done).

    Now I know GW may be planning on having it’s yearly purchase-able book readjust point costs across the board, but imo a year is too long to Wade through a truly negative play experience. I also don’t think they grasp that adjusting everything at once is a pretty poor way to balance a system, while incremental adjustments are usually fine.

    I guess we’ll have to see what happens. 40K could be a pretty balanced game with tight ruleset, but I imagine it’s take 2/3 years to get there, and is dependent on playtesting new releases to not create annual power creep.

    • Red_Five_Standing_By

      I think once we get all the major codexes, it will be easier for GW to adjust the game and armies since we will have a complete picture.

      Until then, we are going to see power armies crop up. Hopefully GW finds way to limit their power, as they did with the Stormraven lists.

  • Sage

    Because the T3 5 plus unit isn’t a T3 unit anymore. Only a plasma gun can negate what should be neglible armor and you need 3 to wound with heavy bolt and pulse rifles that should destroy those units but now struggle to do so. A bolter probably shouldn’t cut terminator armour but it should cut through flak.

    • ZeeLobby

      Yeah. It’s definitely a combination of changes throughout the system which created the issue. Removing morale, templates, etc. Whether they did this knowingly to sell lots of models for horde armies or not is relatively unknown, but fixing a single thing here or there is probably not sufficient.

      • Part of it is there’s always a bunch of people using old meta stuff. You can’t change your army overnight to suit a new meta because it takes time to buy and paint new figs.

        Which can be really frustrating when you’re use to unit X being able to deal with Y and now it has a different battlefield roll.

        Or worse you designed your army entirely around the meta with what used to be catch all tools like grav weapons and suddenly they aren’t the end all be all anymore.

        • Red_Five_Standing_By

          Vindicator is a prime example of this. It cannot effectively deal with hordes anymore. its entire goal is to kill tanks, monsters and elite units now.

  • Simon Chatterley

    I generally have no issue with people bringing there toughest units. History shows us many example of crushing victories due to technological advancement after all.

    But as this is a game with rules what I hate are the gimmick lists that are just exploiting a poorly written rule. The defendants of such lists will always argue “maybe that was the intention” which is a poor defence for being “that guy”

    In those situations I absolutely want GW to Errata and FAQ it to stop it happening. That’s what I’m paying my money for when I buy the rules.

    • Muninwing

      toughest units that crush others happens in the real world because it’s not balanced by points. the same is true for 40k.

      only, we have points for that reason.

      sure you can take the toughest stuff. but if they are more efficient due to being fewer points than they should be, that’s a bit of a problem. because it’s a game, and that’s supposed to be part of it.

      • Koonitz

        Also, crushing your opponent like that already has a gameplay style that is fully supported by GW. Two, in fact. Open Play and Narrative Play. Matched Play is specifically for balanced games where one side SHOULDN’T have an advantage.

        The best source of playing a game that mirrors real life would be narrative play, where you play to the mission and the story, without even concerning yourself with power level balance, let alone points balance.

  • I_am_Alpharius

    GW* dammed it they do and dammed if they don’t
    http://pics.me.me/damned-damned-if-you-do-if-you-dont-cmon-cmon-6818672.png

    *putting aside what you feel about the rules GW right and how their games play

    • ZeeLobby

      I mean they’re only damned both ways cause they always half-butt it. If they really put effort into it, it’d simply be better. But again that costs money, and effort, and I still think there’s a core group within GW who see themsselves as a model company first, which constantly wars with the other side.

      • I_am_Alpharius

        Guess the words “putting aside what you feel” don’t hold much water with you then….

        • ZeeLobby

          Well. If we remove feelings and assume GW is putting 100% effort towards both than yes, their damned either way.

    • zeno666

      Only because they don’t do things like rules well.

      • I_am_Alpharius

        Guess the words “putting aside what you feel” don’t hold much water with you then…..

    • Muninwing

      pick the right one. not damned because you didn’t pick the left door. and not damned because you didn’t not pick the right one.

      so, too, GW has ways they could deal with this one.

  • Drpx

    -Hordes are a L2P issue. Conscripts are fine. Let the meta settle.

    -All Flyers need to be errata’d ASAP because of one model.

  • Davis Centis

    Good article! Agreed that we’re still too early in, and lots of codexes are on the way. There needs to be a rock-paper-scissors equation in the meta, and right now we’re honestly close to that, so trying to fix by errata isn’t a good idea unless it’s really, vitally needed.

  • Defenestratus

    When did 8th drop? This summer? And we’re already talking about how to “fix” the “meta”? LOL

    I thought 8th was supposed to be the fix!

    If the players weren’t willing to “fix” the previous versions themselves through g-dam**d self restraint then why do you think they’re going to do it now that they’ve been told, by people who purport to know what they’re talking about – that 8th is the most balanced edition ever?

    I loved 7th because I normally play only against my friends. We don’t make busted lists, we don’t try to cram as much cheese into our armies as possible – and we always play “all painted” armies. 7th was amazingly awesome for us because we weren’t actively looking to break the system.

    • I thnk what would be useful would be a forum of some kind or site of some kind where the discussion is not centered around tournament play.

  • A giant part of the problem is that all of the codices need to be available. Not drip fed over the course of five years. While you have that model of drip feeding codices you’re going to have this garbage “meta”.

    And yes indexes exist, and are several shades weaker than any of the codices released.

    • Drpx

      Should have stayed at the Index level.

      • ZeeLobby

        Yeah, I thoguht the indexes made sense.

  • Apocryphus

    There’s actually a lot of merit to this, though it seems that’s a very unpopular opinion. Yes, there are a lot of issues that need to be addressed by GW, but one of those issues isn’t “fixing” every winning list. If GW “fixes” every winning list, then we will be stuck in an eternal cycle of errata and every army will become so generic and bland that the game will lose all aspect of fun. The refusal to adapt your tactics is not GW’s responsibility, that pertains to meta, what GW needs to concentrate on is fixing issues like characters blocking shooting to other characters, unclear rules writing, fixing points and wargear errors etc. I feel the pain of elite armies vs hordes too, but each time I get tabled by AM or the like, I tweak my list and try something new.

  • zeno666

    GW: 40k 8th edition, streamlined rules and much easier to get into.

    Real World: 40k 8th edition, 8 pages of rules. 60 (if that is even enough) pages of FAQ’s and Erratas. Still there are things that are not explained in the rules…

    – Epic Fail –

  • Erich Schoenholtz

    This article will be errata’d. LOL>

  • Ninety

    “Now many players struggle with conscripts and other hordes, but still rather than adjusting to fit them (T3 units can in fact be killed) players are not adjusting and they are running rampant over the meta.”

    This is mildly disingenuous. Nobody’s saying that conscripts are somehow an unstoppable bulwark that’s impervious to any attack. The problem is that they’re so incredibly cheap for their T3 5+ that even designated anti infantry units are cost ineffective to kill them. With no templates, d6 shots from flamers and the like are far from an effective way to deal with them, as with Commissars (that can’t be targeted except for snipers, the vast majority of which suck) the intended weakness of hordes, morale, is an almost total non-issue. Basically the best way to deal with them is with melee hordes like Boyz or Berserkers, which has its own host of issues.

    Don’t blame the players, blame the game for making it so even attacking conscript blobs at all is a benefit for their player.

    • 301stFeinminsterArmoured

      Mind war is looking like a new answer, if not a good answer,

  • Tim

    I agree with most of what’s here. That said the lack of a weapon that specifically works best against horde type units is a current problem in my opinion. Any dedicated anti infantry will work, but it punishes non horde infantry harder than the horde. The most cost efficient horde counter is a horde of your own.

    • 301stFeinminsterArmoured

      Artillery needs a shot in the arm, like extra shot dice for larger units.

      • Red_Five_Standing_By

        Yes, same with flamers. If the artillery or flamer targets a unit with more than 10 models, then it rolls an extra d6 hits. If the unit contains more than 20 models, it rolls an extra 2d6 hits.

  • Marc Berry

    Need to sort out terrain rules and los for vehicles ect

  • becizzle

    Start with broken IG. Work backwards. Fixed.

    • Chad Underdonk

      IG hasn’t changed in how many editions?

      The rules changed to become Horde Hammer

      It isn’t IG that is broken, they simply CAN garner great benefit from horde play. That’s a rules issue, not an IG issue.

      • Gorsameth

        If the rules change and the cost of units does not adapt then that is a design failure.

        Hordes have an inherent weakness in 8th with Moral. The mistake GW made was making moral irrelevant for most (all) horde armies.

        Without the Commissar no one would complain about Conscripts because killing 10 sees another 9 die from moral.

        • Chad Underdonk

          Conscripts are hardly the be all end all of Guard. They are a crutch used by those who are looking to confuse and befuddle their opponents, nothing more. They catch bullets and stand in place. Their only saving grace is that you have to chew through 30 wounds…just like you do with many other armies in smaller units.

          No, it isn’t conscripts which makes guard good. It is the fact that they are a large army in an edition where templates are less than a quarter as useful as they used to be. In an edition where they get saves from a lot of weapons that they haven’t gotten saves from in a long time. In an edition where their better weapons actually reduce the saves on better armor. In an edition where virtually all of their toys are useful in one way or another. This is horde hammer, and it is going to benefit any army which is able to be built around big units. You think guard are strong? Wait until you see the stuff that Orks and ‘Nids are able to do.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            The problem is that they removed templates and they removed morale at the same time. Those were the two mechanics that kept hordes in line.

  • BIGMOFO

    You see a lot of this behavior in mmo’s that have pvp in it. A new power or class gets over used because it’s percieved to be op or undefendable and the baby munchkins start getting on the forums to cry about it instead of figuring out how to defeat it. Eventually the devs aquiece to the complaints and Nerf said power/character thus, steririlizing the game and take any real tactical considerations out of the game play equation. GW needs to stop listening to these munchkins and make the game they have envisioned. Errata’s should be used to fix spelling mistakes and clarify rules, not compensate for someones poor decisions and inability to adapt to good tactics.

    • Muninwing

      the tactical decisions should happen on the table, not while you are on the internet reading about someone else’s broken list idea.

      it’s not about “baby munchkins” crying about not wanting to play the game well. it’s about wanting to be able to play the game, instead of playing an army-builder.

      • NagaBaboon

        Nail head, meet hammer.

      • Bingo.

  • EnTyme

    You know, I seem to remember a lot of people freaking out before 8th dropped about how the new rules would heavily favor MSU and hordes would be absolutely blown off the map. Just a friendly reminder that something looking good on paper may not necessarily translate to it being good on the table.

  • Lebowski1111111111

    Im an eldar player, i would have welcomed the errata fixes last edition, sometimes things like bike spam are an obvious problem before a game has even been played, than terrorize the meta for 18 months. Its better for them to do something than burry their heads in the sand and let potential abomination rule the day.

    i like what GW is doing.

  • eMtoN

    There is certainly a vocal group of people that don’t want to adapt. They’ve been playing a certain army a certain way since 4th edition and by god anything that walks over it should be errata’d out of existence.

    I agree the stormaven list should have been nuked. I also agree that just because you get trounced that doesn’t mean the enemy army is OP. Adapt and explore the options available to your faction and try again.

    The first questions before issuing an errata should be: do other armies have an effective counter? Do the points and options make sense compared to similar units in other armies? If the answer is no to either of those then there is a balance issue. If the answer is yes, then there’s nothing to see here, move along.

  • There’s a lot of moaning about Meta here. Can we just get on with playing 40k now?

  • Dmitrij Pozdniakov

    Another useless content-free “haters-gonna-hate” op-ed.

  • Malisteen

    I’d have more confidence in things ‘working as intended’ and ‘not actually being broken’ if I believed GW did serious competitive play testing. But I don’t believe that. I don’t really believe GW play tests most of their rules at all. I’m not sure they even get a second person to read them over for copy editing purposes half the time. As long as GW is relying on the community to do the hard work of testing for them, we’re going to be seeing erratas fixing problems that the community finds.

    • If you needed any proof of GW games designers not reading things over you just need to look at the old Ork Codex. It had several pieces of wargear that were functionally useless in the very edition it was released in, and all since. It was clearly a rushed copy and paste job from the previous codex.

      But to be fair even with good playtesting there’s a difference between testing things in a vacuum vs seeing it in the wild.

      It can be quite difficult for games designers to ‘think’ like a competitive player because they are designing the game based on their own expectations on how the game is to be played and frequently they are too altruistic.

      That’s the definition of ‘Game as Intended’ vs the ‘Metagame’.

      You have to release books with the knowledge that someone will try to break it. But thankfully GW is trying to FAQ stuff in a reasonable amount of time now vs just straight up ignoring the problem like they used too.

  • memitchell

    Chasing the meta is letting the tail wag the dog. The goal of the hobby is not to win tournaments. Promoting tournament winners as apex players is promoting a small slice of the hobby as THE most important aspect of the hobby. And, it’s not realistic. I doubt Raven-spam was prevalent, or posed a danger to the overall hobby.

    Balance by errata is a bit like driving nails with a sledgehammer. I have a new Genestealer Cult with a lot of leftover stuff from my original 25 year-old GSC. Enough stuff that I can dabble in I-Guard. Had enough leftover Catachan’s to gin up a 30 strong Conscript unit. It just so happens the new erratahammer limits them to exactly that number. For me, no harm, no foul. Now, if I had invested heavily in Conscripts, and they then got changed, I might not be so blasé. We all expect a little of that. Not a lot of that.

    • Gorsameth

      Everyone benefits from better balance. (note not perfect, just better).

      The casual IG player who has to consciously take bad units to avoid tabling his casual Ork friend benefits from a world where every army has a decent chance of beating every other army.

  • Sy S

    ” Players can fix the meta without GW. ”

    Because that has worked so well for the last 10 years… Hah Hah Hahhhhhh….

    • Muninwing

      nanny states exist because people are babies…

  • From a game balance perspective there is a need to differentiate between “unexpected interaction between rule X and Y” (errata), “clever rules interpretations” (FAQ) and “working as intended” (game design failure)

    You also need to define what you consider a ‘balanced’ state in 40k. Because we need to stop kidding ourselves, making a perfectly balanced game with all the different components of 40k is very difficult. Throw in constantly adding new rules, models and the games designers tendency to constantly one-up themselves makes it virtually impossible.

    Players also have a tendency to expect that every army should have an answer to X,Y, and Z which is also unrealistic. Some armies will have more difficulty dealing with certain threats than others. But it’s not a matter of making sure that every army has every tool in the shed, but rather making sure that there is enough variety in the types of army lists used that combination X+Y+Z doesn’t dominate the metagame to such an extent that certain armies become completely unviable as a result.

    Every addition or change to the 40k rules alters the meta by definition and so we also need time between changes to let the meta settle a bit before deciding what to do next.

    Once you have a fair definition of what the games designers call ‘balanced’ then you can work towards that goal.

    You need to compare the meta to your expectations by using a set of guidelines, for example:

    1. A player of adequate skill should have a reasonable chance of winning a game with a sub-optimal army list. (Tactics and Skill should be more important that armylist building)

    2. Close avenues for creating unstoppable combos, free units, instant win conditions, and nearly indestructible units.

    3. Reduce effectiveness of units that see excessive spam play or splashing (allied into other armies because they are too good).

    4. Increase effectiveness of units and armies that see little or no competitive play.

    5. Maintain diversity in army selection in competitive events and casual play (Avoid situations where the most effective armies at events are consistently variants of the same list or ways to defeat said list)

    6. The combination of armies in the top 10 at any tournament should be indistinguishable from random.

  • Rayna M. McCowan

    Errata should fix typos and such things. FAQ’s should be for dealing with unintended interactions and clever ones that break things and just failures of game design. Also no real touching of the meta should be attempted until majority of the codex’s are out (like chapter approved changing points and unit rules).

    • Red_Five_Standing_By

      So they should not have fixed the Stormraven spam problem?

      • Rayna M. McCowan

        Was that done through abusing a typo? Through clever reading of rules? Or by just abusing taking flier detachments? Because if it was just abusing flier detachments then no they should have left it as is. Hilariously people would still be bitching about that instead of IG being OP because of conscripts and twin shot Leman Russ’.

  • Chad Underdonk

    It just occurred to me while talking with friends that a lot of folks are painting the guard regimental bonuses as something unique or overpowered.

    But a lot of folks either don’t realize, or have conveniently forgotten that they too have toolboxes that the guard does not have. Guard don’t get the same re-rolling auras that other armies typically do. For Guard there is no Marine Captain, no Eldar Autarch, no Chaos Dark Apostle to grant auras to multiple units in range.

    The Guard pretty much have the Commissars Aura, and a weakened version “orders” which grant some unique abilities, but only a specific number of them…and not to every unit nearby. And rightly so. Guard Armies can be so potentially packed with units that an aura that affected everyone nearby could be quite overpowering.

    It would be nice if folks would stop looking at the guard or even the codexes in isolation. “Oh X got this buff, and its way better than the buffs Y got.” All the while conveniently forgetting that they’ve already received buffs in the index to bring them up to their current level.

    Don’t get me wrong. Guard regiments and rules are great. As a longtime guard player they are pretty much as good as I could ask for. But the fact that they got a new toolbox that is completely different from everyone else’s toolbox does not mean that no one else also has a toolbox. It just means that most are forgetting their existing buffs and not looking realizing that in many ways the guard buffs are bringing them into equivalence of the buffing that other armies are already capable of.

  • Marco Marantz

    it doesn’t hurt to ask GW the question given how poorly they write/design rules in the first place.