40K: GW Should Avoid Video Game Industry Pitfalls

Day 1 patches have come to the tabletop.

Games Workshop has had a long relationship with the video game industry. As far back as 1991 they’ve been turning their board and tabletop games in video games. For the longest time though they’ve seemed to manage to keep the two parts of their business from influencing each other.


Welcome to 1993!

Now however it seems like GW has started to learn some familiar lessons from the video game industry. Lets take a look at these.

Things About Video Games That Drive Us Crazy

Take a look through any discussion of the video game industry and you’ll see a couple of big issues that pretty much everyone has with the industry. In general people have major complaints with the quality of the games put out by major video game publishers. These complaints center around the major issues of broken games being released and missing features. lets look at these two issues.

  • Broken game is a game that is released seeming incomplete. It’s a game that perhaps knowingly was rushed out to meet a deadline with out being totally finished. Often these games have major bugs that either make the game not run or major parts of the game not run correctly. Many gamers complain that the game company isn’t worried about quality, that they knowingly put out broken products and let the gamers do their testing for them. Day 1 patches are a common symptom of this issue, fixing issues that many feel should have been noticed in testing.
  • Missing Features are another issue many video gamers have problems with. This is when a video game is released without certain features that either were announced for it or at the least seems like it should have had. This could be a game launching with no multiplayer support when that had been announced, or lacking the ability to personalize in game objects in an expected way.  Often these features are added at a later date, though not always for free.

In both these cases these are behaviors the video game industry has been getting away for quite sometime now. Now with 8th Edition Games Workshop seems to have adapted these feature to the tabletop. Lets look at some examples.

“Broken” Games

I’ve talked a couple times already about GW’s FAQ problems. Now unlike a video game a tabletop game can’t really launch with game breaking bugs, even if the rules make little sense two human players will be able to play the game. However it also does seem like GW is taking a video game developer attitude to releasing products on time and then patching them after the fact. The very fact that almost every release since the start of 8th has needed an almost immediate FAQ, in essence a day 1 patch, point to a strategy of commitment to release time tables first, and thorough play-testing second. As an example lets look at the most recent of their Day 1 patches.


Yeah, I’m about to talk about the Astra Militarum FAQ. So for anyone who missed it the AM got a FAQ, this FAQ comes right on the heels of the books release and is effectively a day 1 patch. And yes, most of the FAQ is just fine, it answers some questions players had, and it addresses some typos or missing lines here and there. And hey, you might say, everyone makes some mistakes, its natural they might miss a line or two. No harm no foul. But that doesn’t explain Commissars.

You see in the FAQ they completely changed the rules for how Commissars work. Changed, not clarified. Less then two weeks after Codex Astra Miliaturm was released – the Commissar rules were re-written. I mean, lets face it, nothing has happened between the AM codex being released and today that warrants the change. Commissars have been a hotly discussed topic since the Indexes came out, and nothing in particular has changed since then. It seems clear this was an issue has been debating for a while, but only came to a decision on after the book had gone to the printers. So they just decided to fix it with a day one patch, just like the video game industry would do.

“Missing” Features

Both Age of Sigmar and Warhammer 40K 8th Edition were massive stream-linings of what had come before. And yet with the simplifications many people felt that features had been left out. In particular in Age of Sigmar players felt that things like, points and comparative play had been left out. In 8th players felt that other features, like vehicle facings had been left out. But fear not! Those features were missing from the base game but GW is here with a handy supplement, the Generals Compendium or Chapter Approved to fix these issues.

Now in the past GW has always been willing to give players what they wanted and add new features and rules into the games, and that has been fine. Even with Age of Sigmar it felt like GW released what they initially felt was a full game and then bowed to players wishes to add additional features the next year. Good for them.

But with Warhammer 40,000 8th it feels a little different. Chapter Approved was announced almost as soon as the game was released and clearly was always part of the overall release plan. Rather than just releasing all these rules as one they were split into a core game and a soon-to-come expansion. Again just like how a video game company would do it. We will have to wait till December to see if Chapter Approved contains core-rules that would have been better placed in the main rulebook – or if it is mainly hard-earned balancing tweaks garnered through the game’s first 6 months in the wild.

Final Thoughts

So in the end it does seem like GW has learned some lessons from the video game industry. In their strategy towards releasing games week in and week out no matter what they follow in the footsteps of modern video gaming companies. And it’s hard to really blame them. The video game industry makes a lot of money and has been using these techniques for years now. Complain as much as video-gamers players do, they still shell out their money and buy the games, download the patches and keep on playing.

It’s probably just not reasonable to expect any company to hold off on putting out a game or book (and making money) for one rule. Can you really blame them?

So what do you think of the “instant FAQs” and And is this a good or bad thing? Let us know, down in the comments! 


  • Simon Chatterley

    I think it’s safe to say the games industry learnt from GW. Every Edition requires us to buy “DLC” to continue to play in the form of codexes and supplements after all.

    • ZeeLobby

      Hehe, expansions, events and campaigns!

  • King Renegado

    Before now, conscripts and commissars have not changed in the slightest in a long time.
    8th changed, and the game changed.
    Short of making vehicles stronger against small arms fire, and making big game wide changes, (though I have an idea for this too..)
    They need to fix a few key flaws in the present game system:
    For starters, all armies need level footing. They all need a way to bust open vehicles, they all need a way to reasonably attack characters, they all need a way to deal with hordes.
    The key is in making either a stratagem or trait that can turn a unit- any unit that can target characters.
    I play guard. Not conscript spam guard either. But I planned for ways to deal with it. It never scared me because Ii had that plan.
    When an army can’t make that plan but another army can, this is an inherent imbalance.
    The nerf should mot have hit commissars, but conscripts (making summary execution cause them suffer 2d3 or d6 mortal wounds before passing morale.)
    Just my two cents.

    • tomas pardo

      may be flamers need to be 2d6 intead of 1d6 or something else to deal with ordes

      • King Renegado

        Flamers definitely need a buff. It shouldn’t even be possible for a flamethrower to open up on a large unit and only hit one model.
        I think 2d6 is excessive, but maybe 2d3…+1 for every 5 models in the unit.

        • ZeeLobby

          Some scaling factor would be nice. Of course I’d be happy with templates again, but I’m some sort of crazy person :D.

          • Kyle Johnstone

            Templates were the best way to handle flame type weapons… Losing them in order to “streamline” play was a bad call imo…

          • Full ack.

          • tomas pardo

            templates are a problem with the new aura sistem.

          • ZeeLobby


          • tomas pardo

            Because force to play in the other way of auras; for one must be closed and for the other must be as far as you can placed. I supose the idea of GW for 8th edition is play on aura sistem.

          • ZeeLobby

            I mean plenty of games do this. It introduces risk/reward, which is something GW games would benefit greatly from. Do I bunch up for the aura bonus and risk getting flamed, or do I keep things loose, but get less bonuses. It’s not like they can’t work together.

          • tomas pardo

            Ok , I didnt say they can be together, bud I remarked will be a problem, with this on mind the less problematic template will be flame template.

          • ZeeLobby

            I mean I guess. Still don’t see how it’s a problem. It’s just a choice of risk and reward. Auras still work regardless of templates being available. The only problem is the one posed to the player if they’re willing to take those risks.

          • NNextremNN

            To benefit from the aura only a single model for the unit needs to be in range. So make sure you have one model in aura range and spread them as far as possible. Wound system allows you to remove the model you want so remove the models furthest away and keep the aura.

            I’m not a big fan of templates for this size of game but I think they don’t really work against the aura system.

        • tomas pardo

          Why not flamers must do lot of damage on short distance?

      • BJ Mickle

        A flat 2d6 is too much, but getting a bonus if the unit has 10 or more models, like some of the cannons on vehicles, might be great. I think the best bonus is any flamer type weapons get to re-roll random variables on units over 10. Because…
        What about things like twin flamers? Do they get more? And the inferno cannon on the hellhound, that get’s 2d6? Do they go up to 3d6 or 4d6? The leman russ, say it has 3 heavy flamers (and they aren’t “twin”), does that become 6d6? It spirals out of control pretty rapidly.

        • tomas pardo

          Each weapon have a description now ,in that way twin linked flamer don´t need to be doble shoot, can be a re-roll on failed wounds. the new cost of flamer weapons will justify a chnge like this. isn´t easy to arrive on 8″ to shoot your target

        • Coltcabunny

          If only there was some kind of perspex device that could do away with all this bass ackwardsness…

      • BaronVonYoloing

        Nah. That still can punish elite units. Ask me I’d say flamer weaponry should cause 1 hit per model in range when shooting. 15 Conscripts near that flamer = 15 attacks (hits). Simple.

        • lemt

          Hmmm… 1D3 hits +1 for every 3 miniatures in range from the unit you’re targeting, to a max of +5. So you minimise the nonsense of hitting insane amounts of hits against flyers (ignoring the penalty for shooting at flyers because CLEARLY flamers are good for that), but you get more guaranteed hits if you are close to a horde.

        • petrow84

          Or, scale it – another D6 for every 10 model in the unit.

      • Peter B

        I think 2D3 would be nice improvement over 1D6.. Minimum of 2 hits sounds better, much higher average of 4 hits total.

        • tomas pardo

          this change will be better, but I think the cost of a heay flamer vs heavy bolter don´t realy be justify. you will shoot your bolter more times on game than flamer and flamer don´t need to hit bud when wound it wounds 1d6(3 wounds) on plus now not negate cover. only on overwach is much better.

    • aargh00

      Conscripts should just go away. They’ve never had their own model, it’s impossible to tell them from a regular guard unit on the tabletop, and GW has left every other unit without it’s own models out of the new codex. No other army gets to just spam a slightly cheaper version of their main infantry unit. It was a stupid unit that was put in for fluff reasons way back, and it should just be excised from the game completely.

      • Nameless

        I think that they might have been concerned about dropping Conscripts, Veterans, Rough riders, Primaris psykers, Vendettas not to mention several sub factions in one go might have driven players away.

      • King Renegado

        They are very easy to tell apart. They come in a larger squad and don’t have a sarge.
        Visually they should look the same as regulars.
        Go look at pic of the military. Short of looking at the rank, can you tell them apart?
        What? You mean their uniforms and equipment are all the same?!?!
        That couldn’t be why conscripts look the same as regular guard could it??!?

        PS other armies DO get cheaper versions of their regulars
        Space marines get scouts
        Eldar get guardians
        Tyranids get gaunts
        Orks get grots.
        Lay off the salt, amigo.

        • banana raccoon

          The problem is that Conscripts all but invalidate the regular Infantry squads. We were never able to take them previously without much investment or limitation. Platoons no longer existing and no special weapons or options for Infantry squads mean that you will be hard pressed to justify not taking the cheaper option, despite worse stats. Also Guardians, Grots, Gaunts, and Scouts don’t take the place of other units.

          We know you’re incredibly invested in your conscripts and commissars, but please calm down. The nerf happened, now we deal with it, and it’s not like IG is currently lacking in anything really.

          • King Renegado

            How presumptuous. I don’t run conscripts. Never have. Doesn’t fit my army’s fluff. I would run scions and vets (pre 8th. When they were over costed at 12 ppm and 22 points for the tempestor, and could only take 2 special weapons per squad, and my vets would take carapace armor.)
            I also have nothing but contempt for the person that brings 120+ conscripts, but you see, as someone that would take one taurox with a scion squad inside, commissars were my best leadership buffer.
            As they are right now commissars are a hindrance to any unit that is not conscripts.

            Anyway, several of your other points are completely wrong.
            You claimed that “there are no special weapons available” to the infantry squad.
            Well, either you aren’t a guard player, are a new guard player, or are just a troglodyte.

            The standard infantry squad can take 1 special weapon, and have two troopers merge to form a heavy weapons team at a DISCOUNT COST from what a heavy weapons squad costs. A heavy weapons squad is 3 heavy weapons teams, each team costs 6 points…Infantry squad gets their team for 4.

            So there is that little myth debunked, next up, you claim that
            “Conscripts invalidated the infantry squad.”
            Here is why this is wrong… Post codex at least.
            Conscripts only get orders on a 4+.
            Infantry squads always get their orders, have a higher ballistic skill (statistically hitting 50-150% more times than conscripts, depending on the order)
            AND can take a special/heavy weapon that can safely be hidden behind a squad of lasgun toting bros.

            Conscripts made infantry squads invalid? Gtfo.

          • banana raccoon

            You’re not worth a response. Shape up your attitude, friend.

          • banana raccoon

            Actually you know what, I’ll have at it.

            First off you’re taking the basic infantry squads for the sole purpose of sitting on something, or screening. You are not spending the points on mortars that won’t fire accurately enough to make their points back, or flamers that will rarely do much damage for nearly 2 additional bodies, or even worse than the two above. It makes even less sense now, in 8th edition and the age of expensive weapons versus PPM efficiency, to take something simple with a simple job and spend points in a vain hope it will sometimes do something.

            Since you don’t seem to know that the ballistic skill of conscripts doesn’t matter, let me explain to you – it doesn’t matter. The random long-shot kills by conscripts are easily valuable enough to make their points back, but they don’t even need to do that. They will become a speed bump before the actual damage doers end up removing the thing. Singular, focused purpose, more efficient use of resources (not having to spend CP to make a huge squad as well as cheap), and, until recently, immunity to morale made them outright better than infantry squads.

            You spend a lot of time talking about how you don’t take conscripts, giving us details not pertinent to the conversation, and trying to actively discredit consistently. Why is that, I wonder?

          • King Renegado

            I spent a lot of time giving details “not pertinent” because you made the irrelevent details part of thr conversation.
            “We know you are incredibly invested in conscripts and commissars…”
            It would be no different than if I accused you of running only ___ stars throughout 7th. (Not saying you did. I don’t even know what army you use.)
            This whole conversation also started because you said they should just drop conscripts, and things snowballed from there.

            As far as “discredit and name calling”… Well, are you a guard player? Because when you stated infantry squads couldn’t take a special weapon, and were invalidated, you seemed like “not a guard player,” or, if you were, “a troglodyte.”

            Look, I am NOT by any means against a nerf hammer coming down on conscript spam. Seriously, I don’t wanna wait for some clown to move that many models or roll that many dice.

            You are right, as they were fearless, conscripts were 100% broken, but one fearless unit being spammd in droves isn’t very different from another.

            Oh and you are also right about other armies not necessarily just being able tonsub models in for different units, but guess what?

            The bread and butter of guard is…. Guardsman.
            Conscripts, special weapons squads, infantry squads, veteran squads, command squads…
            More than half the guard infantry is made up of models from one single kit.
            Good luck trying to convince GW to release upgrade sprues for vets/conscripts/regiments. We have been wanting that for years.

            Anyway, the same tune I have been singing since the faq came out is that GW nerfed the wrong unit.

            If I havent told you what I think would have been a better fix already, here it is:

            Up all commissars by 15 points.
            Summarry execution goes to what it was pre-FAQ
            Only 1 unit of conscripts may be taken per infantry squad (old platoon rules. Command squads work the same way with company commanders in 8th.)
            Add this to Conscript’s “raw recruits” rule:
            “When a unit with this special rule suffers a mortal wound due to a Commissar’s summary execution rule, it suffers 2d3(or d6) mortal wounds instead, and the test is passed.”

            I also have some thoughts that GW should add stratagems that let units target characters since not all armies have access to snipers.

            Units that can auto pass morale should either be rare, or have to pay a premium for it.

            anyway, the topic of this conversation has shotgunned all over (sorry about that much.)
            But when you say stuff like a unit should drop from a codex, or insinuate what units people are invested in, well it rubs fololk the wrong way.

            No hard feelings on my end, dude.

    • Fredddy

      Just reintroduce platoon structure. Ok, GW does not want unit number restrictions, but a restrictive rule is stil muchl less worse for the business than this system of “ok, you get this-oh, second thought, you dont”.

  • Heinz Fiction

    The Commissar nerf really worries me. Not that they didn’t need one but this long known issue should have been adressed in the codex, not 2 weeks after, and in a way that doesn’t completely invalidate the whole unit (also the wording is really ambiguous and requires a FAQ on it’s own).

    I’m for sure not spending money on models that are made completely useless before I even had a single game with them…

    • Fredddy

      Yes, this is the worst part. For a computer game, the product eventually gets better with the patches for the person who invested the money. For the comissars- you spent the money and you end up worse because someone else feels that their marines are not brave enough. And conscripts+commissars combo was not a clear loophole (like Ogryn wound allocation) in the rules, it was a solid unit doing the same thing since 4th. From then on, the nerf bat is over anyones head like a sword of Damocles- good luck investing hundreds of dollars into a thing like this.

  • NagaBaboon

    8th is new so I can forgive them ‘patching’ the first few, we’re all still finding our feet and that’s probably just as true for their testers and I’d rather they patched than just left things broken. If they’re still doing it in 3 or 4 more codexes time that will be less forgivable.

    • James Regan

      yeah if there’s still the two week after release patch once they’re on the 2nd round of codices I’d take it as a bit worrisome. As is, given the lead times for print and the number released in a short time, I can understand it (you don’t suddenly gain printers because you need to release 8 codices in a year, so I suspect some of these have been gathering dust in boxes for a while)

      This isn’t a complaint around the actual FAQs, given there’ll always be one or two typos, or really obvious questions, but of things like the commissar patch, which probably should have been caught earlier.

    • NNextremNN

      Those are not the “first few” anymore these are more like the second ones. And there will always be new codices or supplements. This is how GW encourage sales. And these are done months in advance. So these problems will stay and not be solved with time. I’m not saying they shouldn’t fix errors and problems but we shouldn’t jump to their defence and say that everything is fine. I hate these day one patches, early access, DLC, preoder stuff and so on that GW copies from video games but it’s likely to stay.

  • Crevab

    Developers I trust make decisions I don’t understand quite often.

    This? This is gonna be a bumpy ride

    • ZeeLobby

      True that. A good developer will make tweaks based on content not even released yet. We’ve seen this in WMH many times, where a unit will get buffed or nerfed in preparation of some future release. As long as the meta is better, and the changes are easily accessible, I’m cool with it.

  • Rob brown

    Except it wasn’t 2 weeks was it. Because the Guard Codex (I’m a dinosaur) was finalized and sent to printers months ago, and when we look at the discussion about hordes and in particular the power of Guard it was all from the last few months.

    A codex takes months to finalize, print and distribute. A web release FAQ a few hours – once you agree the rule.

    The commissar rule needed to change, they changed it. Move on.

    • Heinz Fiction

      This discussion was on the moment the first index leaks appeared on the web. I mean they did try to adress it with the codex, by adjusting conscripts a little bit so they were aware of it by the time the codex was written. They probably wanted to sell a few more models though before taking action. Very dubious practice in my opinion…

      • Perversor

        Or they just had all the production machinery of codex working on and didn’t bothered to delay it to fix some issues. Imho i think we’ll see this 1st batch of codex be a bit more rushed than usual, and after the 1st year see a more balanced aproach due the chapter approved books (at least i hope so)

        • BT

          I agree. 8th is a clean slate for 40k, every codex needs to be replaced. Where you could use your 6th ed Codex to play in 7th till your codex came out, you can’t do that now.

          GW vastly underestimated their need for Indexes for 8th because of all of the old players coming back to play 8th (again, due to the clean sweep). If anything, it should have given them perspective on what books to do first and how many they may need. In my area, you couldn’t get the Marine Index till the Marine Codex came out (ironically).

          They have a metric ton of players sitting there without codices, so the Commissar being changed after more widespread game play is minor in comparison. They are more focused on getting those codices out than making each book perfect. I think it is very understandable.

        • dootdootbeep

          A delay in printing means not just the AM codex but everything gets delayed. That will cost them a ton of money.

        • I_am_Alpharius

          Publications don’t “go to print” until about 8 weeks before release. A book may well be considered “finalised”; however, up until then GW can make edits to them and simply update the printed with the new copy to be printed. GW don’t have thousands of copies of book stock just hanging around the warehouse waiting to be released. Much like, nearly, all retail business GW manage their stock on a ‘Just-in-time’ basis.

          • NNextremNN

            Apparently they have never heard of “Just in time” and actually do stockpile books many months in advance.

          • I_am_Alpharius

            They really don’t. For one very simple reason. The Nottingham distribution euro-hub does not have the space to do that.

          • NNextremNN

            Then why didn’t they included fixes from the Index FAQs into the Codex?

          • I_am_Alpharius

            They do as and when 2nd print runs are done. Yet, GW are not going to destroy £’s of stock for every small change. They will sell through the existing stock first. E-Codex are updated, albeit slowly, as when the team that handle that have update on their production schedule.

          • NNextremNN

            Some of these mistakes were found days after their release and they re-emerged in the later codices which means they either didn’t care ore were almost done with the new ones at that point. Of course they could have waited a bit to actually gather feedback from the index books but that would have delayed their initial plan and sales. Fixing things fast is nice but it still makes these things feel rushed and incomplete just like it does with videogames. And I’m 100% sure that the Tyranid book is already done printing most likely even the chapter approved book. So I still doubt they produce them just in time. That’s hardly possible with such a product.

          • I_am_Alpharius

            A printer can rattle of 1000’s of copies of books in a day or two.

          • NNextremNN

            Arn’t all books made in china anyway? I doubt they own these printers they just reserved production capacities from other companies. But yes these get cheaper when you reserve fewer over a longer time.

            These are all business decisions like is buying storage cheaper then paying for bigger and faster print runs? And for some of these the customer pays when receiving a book with some errors because of less QA time.

            Just in time sounds nice until you logistic strikes for a day and you start to worry you can’t produce anymore. Anything needs balance and balance can always be argued about.

          • I_am_Alpharius

            They can be along and in various locations across Europe and the UK. It varys from release to release. GW will “book” printing slots at printers time months in advance (I would hazard min 6 months). There will be a deadline for final copy to be submitted, but up until then changes can be made. The printers will then ship stock directly to the 3 distribution hubs GW run (Nottingham, Memphis USA, and Aus, can’t recall where that one is) for shipping to stores/customers. Likely it’s all sent by air; as that very quick and not that expensive to use for paper products. True strikes are a concern and a risk; but it is a minimal risk any retail has to take. Most countries have laws surround striking, so likelihood is GW would be aware of any chance of strikes and can prepare contingency plans.

    • silashand

      ^ This. Commissars needed changing so they fixed them. I for one am happy they have listened to the player base. Complaining about getting a fix too soon is just dumb. Players need to realize that these books are at the printers *months* before players ever get a chance to potentially identify issues. That’s the drawback of any kind of hardcopy print product. Letting it stay broken for months/years like GW used to do is what made the game unenjoyable for a lot of players. I for one am extremely happy about the new GW’s response and support for the new edition. If someone doesn’t want to download and read the current FAQ then that’s on them IMO.

      • Lebowski1111111111

        something had to happen with how conscripts and commissars interact, but now you will never see commisars in any competitive guard lists. The way the rule is written forcing the re-roll even if your happy with the result will just make guys not take them.

        What more likely to happen now is more people will start considering a side detachment of volstryns (sic) that limit morale casualties to d3 only and save on commissars. I dont see much changing when it comes to conscripts and spam.

      • vlad78

        And now they need to fix the complete lack of meaningful cover and difficult groudn to make of 40k a wargame again.

        • Red_Five_Standing_By

          If they did that, they would need to change the Imperial Fist and Iron Warrior traits.

          • vlad78

            Quoted for truth, and as an imperial fist player first and foremost I would gladly accept that.

          • vlad78

            Quoted for truth, and as an imperial fist player first and foremost I would gladly accept that.

  • Atogrim

    Heh….a classic. Whatever GW does is wrong.
    WE were the people screaming for faster FAQs and corrections.
    Now that we got them we want them to go away?
    It’s not like GW made less mistakes in ed7 or WHFB. They just got corrected much slower or not at all.

    • petrow84

      Have an upvote good sir. Looks like I’m not the only one remembering the days of the 4++ CC-only storm shield and the Power Scroll.

      • Chaosrex

        Yeah how they ever had the “brilliant” idea to give stormshield a flat 3++ is still baffling to me, even after all this years…

        • petrow84

          “good” old times, when ANY unit with anything lass than a 2+/3++ was considered to be weak and worthless 🙂

      • Atogrim

        Been there, done that 😉

    • ZeeLobby

      Eh. I think this author is in a very small minority. Similar groups exist in other game systems as well, where the world is moving too fast for them. I don’t think it’s ever really an issue as long as the updates get smaller and smaller over time. Now if GW just seesaws power back and forth it could be an issue.

      • Atogrim

        True. But so far the FAQs and corrections seem resonable.
        Take the Commissar. That was just TOO good (to be true…for me as old IG fan ^^).

        • ZeeLobby

          Oh, Agreed. I still understand some people dislike buying a ton of commissars and conscripts only to have the power pulled out from under them. Or people who bought 12 assassins, etc. I mean I would never do these things, but i have had the power levels of my 40K units thrown all over the place in the past, even if they weren’t tier 1, and it just sucks to have that happen when you really like a unit (or don’t want to have to buy more to keep relevant). That’s really the meat of my seesaw concern.

        • Red_Five_Standing_By

          They nerfed the Commissar too hard.

    • Agent of Change

      Yeeeaaahhh I can’t believe it but I’m gonna take up the GW banner on this one, I’m doing that more often than not these days. They’ve been killing it recently in most aspects and the only thing better than a day one FAQ is getting it right in the book. I don’t say that to be glib either.

      Anyone even tangentially familiar with a publishing schedule knows that even IF GW printed their own books (i’m not sure if they do) The final text of the document would be set months ago, and in the meantime they would keep doing additional playtesting… unfortunately a physical document cannot be retroactively edited in the printed text so FAQ.

      Good Job to GW for actually making the effort.

      • NNextremNN

        Well completely free rules and/or apps would still make this a lot better for anyone.

        It just seems not nice when GW already knows and is printing the book all of us have to buy in December to continue playing. They probably already are preparing the first FAQ for that one.

        When GW was selling the index books they already had the SM Codex finished printing. Which is why they had to correct the same errors twice.

        GW could release more at once they simply don’t do it to increase sales which is understandable but not nice.

        Day one patches / FAQs are a sign of rushed products and I don’t really see the reason to defend these.

        Sure fixing things with FAQs and doing this regularly is good but we shouldn’t pretend this is the only and best way to do it.

        • Agent of Change

          TBH if what they were doing were small and simple there would be a stronger argument that this is rushed. If the player base weren’t so ecstatic and the current release cycle and the previous release cycle hadn’t been so painfully slow there would be a stronger argument this is a bad thing.

          But hey, when they took longer, arguably not rushing products, was teh result any tighter? I mean was it really? the only difference before is that it took longer to get a book and stuff that was broken just stayed broken for most of a codex cycle.

          My counter argument, and speaking as someone who has been doing design work on far less complicated game systems, is that with something as massive and with as many moving parts as 40k is that things are always gong to get missed, sometimes it’s stuff that seems obvious but when you are inside a project what is obvious to you isn’t always what’s obvious to a third party.

          You may find it annoying that there is a day one FAQ, but i find it a sign that the development of the book didn’t stop when they hit send to the publisher…. that’s how it should be. If the second that file went to get printed they started building teh FAQ file.. that’s honestly just good development.

          In the end if all they did was take teh old system and speed it up 3 times for roughly the same result in shorter period of time, to me that preferable to the way it was. At least it isn’t imperial codexes for 2 years straight while everyone else languishes.

    • silashand

      Mostly not at all as I recall 🙂

    • Nwttp

      I’m pretty sure people are screaming for things to not be broken in the first place?

      • Atogrim

        You can’t help it. There is nothing you can do about. There will always be mistakes as long as humans are working on it.

        • Nwttp

          Yea, very true, but gw seems to be extra terrible about it. I guarantee if they paid more money for testers, or really anyone that can help make rules that make sense and play well, then there would be a lot less mistakes.

  • zeno666

    Did they update the IG PDF with the rule change?

    • ZeeLobby

      This is my issue with GW. If we’re getting these rapid fire updates, they really should be updating their digital rules sources with them.

      • zeno666

        They don’t?
        If so. Can I return my Codex because it doesn’t have the correct rules in it? 🙂

        • ZeeLobby

          I know they haven’t in the past, outside of the iBook versions, whose updates usually come later. I haven’t bought digital copies of any of their books lately, so if someone else wants to chime in?

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            Pretty sure it is only the iBook versions

          • ZeeLobby

            I dunno. I think my dex buying days are over. Supposedly they have an app in the works, and I hope it comes with updated rules, cause if they’re adopting this new FAQ cycle, I just can’t stomach buying invalidated codexes. That said, I much prefer working and up to date rules, so I applaud them for the updates, just wish they actually updated their digital content.

          • NNextremNN

            I wish I could buy books with fluff, fancy pictures and maybe painting advices separately from rules.

        • NNextremNN

          Depends on laws in your country. I think the whole EU at least Germany has customer laws which allow to return products with errors when the producer fails to remove this error 3 times. But what is a error? If the rule gets updated with a new one this is probably not an error. If a weapons does 0 damage it might be an error which would allow you to take actions. But most customers won’t bother to actually try.

  • petrow84

    Look, I lived through the edition with my Deathwing Army, when we had to wait 2 years for an upgraded Storm Shield, so I, for myself welcome every change they make to amend imbalances faster in the game. And our new insect overlords too, but that doesn’t belong to the topic.

    • Red_Five_Standing_By

      Oh man, those were dark days. Everyone else had cool new toys and we had poop.

  • benn grimm

    Good thing, just like the last time you moaned about faqs, which was what? A few days ago? We get it, you don’t like your rule sets/games updated quickly. The solution is simple, ignore the FAQ (or turn off your wifi) and play with like minded people who also enjoy waiting 3 years for mistakes in codexes ( or video games) to be rectified.

    • ZeeLobby

      With a name like Stable Abe, I have to imagine him as like a cartoon character where stable game systems are his bit.

      • benn grimm

        To me it screams (bleats) four legged animal, possibly cartoon, like Eeyore maybe, what was the other name for donkey…? Yeah that’s the one.

  • Jack

    GW needs to get a company to make another Space Marine game. The first one was awesome. But it seems they only want to make crap games now like Dawn of War 3. You can polish a turd but its still a turd

    • SilentPony

      Yeah but DW3 is popular with streamers and youtubers. No one plays Space Marine anymore. Last time I tried an online match, on PC, i never found one. Couldn’t find more than 1 person online.
      I loved Space Marine, but I can understand given the current ‘Lets Play’ culture in gaming why GW won’t make another.

      • Rush Darling

        Dawn of War 3 bombed hard. It peaked at around 19000 players on opening weekend down to around 2000 players the weekend after (though currently sitting at 1372). I appreciate them focusing on the multiplayer because that’s generally what gives a game longevity these days, but attempting to make an e-sport at the expense of the lore is what landed them in this mess. (I’m mostly referring to a certain someone jumping around in Cataphractii terminator armour with that comment). I appreciate it was always going to be different from it’s predecessors, but the whole thing just felt like whoever decided it must be an e-sport just ran roughshod over all the other ideas presented for the game. Deathwing is a sad example of what happens when you let pretty much anybody make one of your games (unless I’m mistaken the studio only had one other game on their portfolio, which I’d never even heard of). I’m afraid we’re unlikely to see an improvement as long as we all continue to pick these games up, but as PC gaming warhammer fans I doubt we’ll ever do more than wait for the first steam sale.

        • NNextremNN

          Yeah because any other non 40K game always is a big success. Making video games always is a bit of a gamble especially with a big ip.

          And Angelos is wearing a Tartaros armour not Cataphracti. It still shouldn’t let him be all that jumpy but this could have been “fixed” by something like he found a rare old prototype jumppack Tartaros armor. Not a good solution but sometimes gameplay is more important then 100% accurate lore. I don’t remember SM being known for building bases to produce and recruit troops for each assault (looking at DoW1 which anybody seems to love).

          • Richard Palmer

            I think the problem is that you can explain anything away because it has, ‘special prototype untested, newly-discovered gubbins’, but it still breaks the immersion of being in the 40K universe.

            Take the example of the Terminator armour. It has already been established that Terminator armour is too heavy to start leaping around in, and GW, on the table-top and in the books, have yet to provide any examples of Terminators doing so. When Terminators start leaping around in this way, it breaks the in-game immersion.

            It is not for video game companies to re-invent how established units work within the 40K universe, but to faithfully represent it in-game. When it is not represented, or units do not act as you think they should, then it breaks the immersion, and therefore reduces the enjoyablity of the game.

          • NNextremNN

            But a fleet based chapter of special forces super humans suddenly building dozens of bases does not break the immersion?

            Squads reenforcing with an infinite number of SM on signal points do not break the immersion? Remember these Squads can suddenly decide hey we are veterans now and start wearing terminator armor. It’s not like there were many officers around to promote or teach them.

            A techpriest teaming up with the prophet of the newborn eldar god reviving someone from a near death, that has been in this state for almost ten thousand years does not break the immersion? Also after that he started putting out new tech like it’s a new great crusade. Not even the SM Legions had anti grav tanks back then. I bet if Cawl wanted he could make a 2+ armor with jumpacks. But okay a lot of people do disagree with this whole Cawl thing anyway.

            Still why is everyone so obsessed with Angelos jumping around? This game has much greater problems than just that! Relic could change that to a teleport animation with a throwback and it would still not be a great game.

          • Rush Darling

            Excellent points. I think my only defence of the base building on DoW I – and it’s a shallow one at that – is that it was the starting point. I didn’t have anything to compare it against, and I’d have liked to have seen it go onwards and upwards from there – though “upwards” is very subjective I know.

            As an RPG fan I thoroughly enjoyed the single player in DoW 2, and whilst running around collecting new armour like it’s candy isn’t strictly immersive, it was nice to take a few squads from “rookies” through to “veterans” albeit over a very condensed time frame. I enjoy the fleet development in Battlefleet Gothic for similar reasons – though unfortunately the multiplayer is significantly lopsided.

            Like all things, it’s personal taste I guess. I didn’t want an e-sport strategy game, and after playing the beta I decided to wait for reviews on DoW 3. Obviously it received a mixed response so I waited and eventually picked it up on sale, and now it seems to be dying the slow death of all multiplayer orientated games withsmall player bases.

            Think I just need to stop projecting my excitement and setting myself up for disappointment.

          • NNextremNN

            DoW1 was kinda my first contact with 40K (already loved RTS games) and it took around 10 years after that until I felt financially stable enough to buy into the actual tabletop game. This was also the series that got my into Tau and there are still some great mods for it.

            DoW2 despite what some people said at that time I really liked the combination of my two favorite genres RTS and RPG. It’s also the game that got me into Blood Ravens.

            What I hate about DoW3 is all this forced always online stuff and that you have to unlock colors and skills by grinding hours and hours. Switching between all factions during the campaign never made me attached to the heroes. I understand the narrative approach but I don’t like it. Also I don’t know how to describe this but the game feels kinda strange in a bad way. Jumping around with big hammers kinda was always a BR Captain thing so I can live with their new chapter master still doing it while wearing a fancy super heavy armor.

  • BT

    I think this is a very poor argument for the basis of the article. Lets be honest here… you are using the Commissar as the crux of your argument that GW is acting just like video game companies. The ‘Missing features’ part will not be resolved for 6 more months, so that is idle speculation.

    8th ed was a clean wipe of 40k, every codex was removed and replaced by a Index till the 8th ed Codex was printed. Furthermore, GW is even going above and beyond with additional codices, like Death Guard, that have no old codex to replace (have hope Sisters players!). So a change to a character that has in previous editions cost you models for their moral ability, to actually cost you models for using their moral ability is pretty much on par, don’t you think?

    And yeah, there is going to be issues like this that will come up, because unlike older editions of the game where you can simply gimp by with a older edition codex, all you have is the Index to go off of. So yeah, GW’s priority /should be/ pound out every Codex they can for the tons of players that don’t have one. Things like the Commissar are going to happen. That is actually pretty minor in the grand scheme of things… much like 3 wound Acolytes. I wouldn’t call it a trend, or done purposely like video games.

    We would all love no FAQs or Errata. I am sure GW is the same way. And be glad this stuff is getting updated right away… I am still scarred by the old Chaos Dreadnaught ‘Fire Frenzy’ errata. God, what was it… unchanged for years till a month before the 6th ed codex came out? Or was it the 5th Codex? Then they changed it further in the new codex anyway. Now /that/ was pretty much BS. Be glad those days are long gone.

    • NNextremNN

      Actually GW is acting like a video game company.

      Rulebook + Index is initial Release.

      Codex is DLC some of which were already done at release but not released yet.

      FAQs are patches including day one patches where you could argue if they couldn’t included these in the initial release.

      Chapter approved or supplements are expansions. Of course your don’t have to buy them. But you will still left behind by your friends who all bought it.

      Store or online exclusive models are store exclusive DLCs.

      Preorder bonus are things like signed pictures or models you get sometime. Like right now 3 air caste pilots if you preoder the new Tigershark.

      And just like with video games their books get pirated a lot.

      They also managed to create a community where parts will defend any questionable action ore mistake they do.

      But this isn’t new it could almost be that video game industry learned from GW.

      What GW didn’t do was learn from video games. You can’t copy any information from the game and put it into an online wiki. The few rules and list building apps that exsits are not really “legal” or try to use some loopholes. There is no free2play to get people into the game and to make them paying costumers at a later point. Not that easy to do with models but at least would be easy with rules.

  • OctopusVolcano

    Way to blow it all out of proportion. I mean “re-written”? Commissars provide the exact same role that they did before. Its not like they suddenly give bonus movement or fire a battle cannon. They’re still there to lessen the affects of morale deaths. They’re just not as absurdly good at it like they were before.

    If we wanna talk about unfinished codexes…lets talk admech. Thats half a codex at best.

    • Fergie0044

      Yeah – just this weekend I noticed that there’s no Dunecrawler stats for when its at 6 wounds. Its first bracket is 11-7 then its 5-4. Sloppy.

    • Heinz Fiction

      Commissars don’t have the same role as before.
      Before they made you lose less models in the moral phase. Now the make you lose more models in the morale phase (on average). So they do exactly the opposite. And why players are supposed to pay points for something, that makes their army statistically weaker is a mystery for me…

      • Commissar Molotov

        I don’t think that’s correct. Commissars also allow nearby units to use their higher leadership stat, don’t they? How would that cause the unit to lose “more models in the morale phase on average?”

        • Red_Five_Standing_By

          Because the re-roll is mandatory.

          So if you lost like 10 guys and rolled a 1 for Morale, you still failed. The Commissar says you MUST re-roll failed morale checks. So now you have to re-roll the die, even though you already rolled the lowest possible result.

          • YetAnotherFacelessMan

            Confirmed: Red Five says that poxwalkers are more durable than terminators because you might reroll armor saves of 1 into disgustingly resilient rolls of 6.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            You are taking what I am saying way out of context and applying it to something dumb.

            They could fix this nerfed Commissar by adding the word “may”.

          • Heinz Fiction

            Even if then the commissar would be useless but at least not harmful to your own force…

          • YetAnotherFacelessMan

            I keep seeing this and it boggles me. Basically, people keep saying that the commissar kills people now and doesn’t help, and it’s simply not true.

            Situation 1:
            The unit has lost a number of people less than the commissar’s leadership.

            Roll 1d6. If your d6+X is equal to or less than the commissar’s leadership, no one runs! For most commissars, that’s 8. Lord commissars, that’s 9.

            If you fail, reroll it with a dead guy. Basically, that makes it a reroll with -1 leadership, meaning leadership 7 for a regular commissar and leadership 8 for a lord commissar.

            I see people like “oh, I would have preferred to have kept the 3 I rolled on the first roll and not had the commissar shoot anyone”, and we have that unit also. It’s called an Inquisitor and is much more expensive than a commissar. But given that you can’t keep the 3, you shouldn’t even be thinking about it in terms of the 3. There is no 3. What you’re really doing is saying “If I roll a 1 or a 2, I don’t lose anyone”, and every other facing is exactly the same. You have a d3 in your hand where the facings are either Pass or Fail and all degrees of failure are the exact same.

            When you roll your second die, that’s when you want specifically low numbers.

            Situation 2:
            The test is impossible to pass.

            I keep seeing people like “What if you roll a 1 and are then forced to reroll it into a 6?” Setting aside the bafflingly ignored “What if you roll a 6 and reroll it into a 1” counterargument, my question becomes “Why were you even rolling the 1?”

            When 8 people die, a basic commissar has no hope of keeping everyone alive and motivated. People are going to run and he’s going to have to shoot them. That’s his job.

            So, why do I bring up the poxwalkers? Poxwalkers usually have no chance of passing their armor save. It’s a 7+ base, so you’d only ever roll it if you had a chance of the poxwalker not taking the damage.

            When people talk about commissars in this instance, they need to look at them in terms of the second roll, because the first is meaningless and can be skipped, since it’s an autofail.

            A commissar in such an instance has an effective leadership of 7, 8 minus the one dead guy. That means that a commissar that has lost 8 conscripts earlier in the turn will lose 8-7+d6 or d6+1 more conscripts.

            The reason I say conscripts is that the minimum losses in this case are 2 models, meaning that an infantry or veteran squad that hasn’t been combined will lose their last models on a minimum roll. Below 8 dead in a turn, the commissar will always have a better chance of 0 or 1 models being lost than a sergeant. That’s why I talk about conscripts.

            So, back to the conscripts, without the commissar, they would lose d6+8-4 or d6+4. On a roll of a 2, they would lose 6. On a roll of a 5, the commissar would lose 6.

            So, tying it all back together… poxwalkers can do on a 5+ what terminators do on a 2+. Don’t tell me poxwalkers are more durable against lasguns than terminators. Don’t tell me that commissars cause units to lose more models.

            I’m not saying that the rule is perfect. I’m not saying that the rule is good. I just don’t want people misrepresenting the rule because “something-something rerolls something-something a model dies.”

          • Commissar Molotov

            I’m not following your math. Conscripts have a natural leadership of “4”. Commissar grants them a leadership of “8”. In your example of 10 casualties with a roll of “1”, they’d lose 7 more troops without a Commissar present. With the Commissar, they’d come out better on 4/6 of the potential re-rolls and break even on the fifth – only a “6” would actually cause an extra casualty over the normal result.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            10 was not enough dead conscripts.

            Regardless, you are still pulling off way more conscripts a turn, which is not good, especially for a little more points you can just spam lots of normal guardsmen squads who natively have a higher leadership and force the opponent to shoot at lots of small squads rather than one big one.

          • Commissar Molotov

            Wait, what? You’ll undoubtedly lose more conscripts than you did with the original Commissar rules, of course, but on average you’ll lose less of them with the current Commissar rule than you would without having a Commissar at all.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            Perhaps but Conscripts entire point was to soak wounds and not die in one or two turns. They cannot really do that. Way more effective to use basic Guardsmen now because you get a higher ld and can put special/heavy weapons in the squad.

          • Heinz Fiction

            They can get leadership from elsewhere, they don’t need a commissar for that, so this part of his kit is redundant.

          • Rob brown

            This is nonsence. Just ignore the first dice roll if it is a mandated re-roll. You still have a 1 in six chance of rolling a 1, irrespective of the first dice roll. the cahances are exactly the same.

      • Rob brown

        Don’t let YetAnotherFacelessMan hear you writing that Commissars make you lose models. He has already proved categorically that they don’t and you are net better with Commissars because of the higher LD and the fact that it only kicks in if you fair the test. Plus re-rolling a dice only matters if you pay attention to the first test result.

        • YetAnotherFacelessMan

          Oh snap! I’m developing a rep as “that commissar guy!” XD

          • Rob brown

            A one man Crusade for truth, justice and accurate probability!

      • OctopusVolcano

        Because failing the initial morale test would have resulted in more deaths? This way they get two chances to pass, the second statistically more likely to achieve.

        Different rule, same role. Lessen morale impact.

        I mean sure they now lose more models than the previous rule. But that is exactly the whole point of the change, it was too powerful. It rendered morale, as a mechanic, void against units effectiveness it was specifically introduced to curtail.

  • ZeeLobby

    Totally fine with fast game fixing updates. Will still wait a year or two to make sure the updates calm down once things are closer together before I buy stuff. I think 40K could be a real solid system, possibly within a years time if adjusted right

    • NNextremNN

      Unlikely changing things each month is their way to encourage sales. They are never done or finished. There will always be new things.

  • I_am_Alpharius

    Again with this? Just adding to the proof that GW are dammed it they do and dammed if they don’t…..

    Oh I would like to point out GW have done added ‘DLC’ type products since, pretty much, day one. Don’t forget 2nd Ed did not have psychic powers until the ‘Dark Millennium’ set was published. Adding new way to play beyond the core rules has always been a GW thing.

    • zeno666

      Can we get better basic rules as an expansion too?

      • ZeeLobby

        Hopefully 30K remains that option. But who knows with the gap left in FW’s design team. It’s be awesome if they added pre-heresy Ork and Eldar armies.

        • zeno666

          Yeah, its a much more interesting time period as well.
          40k is ruined by papa smurf

    • benn grimm

      Maybe it’s just proof that this guy has a bee in his bonnet?

  • I’m 100% fine with them fixing broken crap. Before we would have had to live in this world for years until it was fixed. Now waac guys get weeks before their stuff gets fixed. Lesson learned to me is don’t go out and spend a ton of money on busted rules because you won’t get to exploit loopholes with them for very long.

    I just wish they’d do the same thing with sigmar.

    • I agree.
      what would you say sigmar needs?

      • Tighter look at the points. The discount to hordes is not something I agree with. I understand why they are doing it, but making something intentionally undercost is not an avenue that I’ll ever agree with.

        There are still some units overperforming because they are undercost. There are still many units that are not worth their points because of this leading to skew.

        Then there’s the problem with so many factions not having up to date rules. So many people won’t touch sigmar while their factions have the equivalent of an index army that is underpowered compared to the stuff that has the stronger army books.

  • Spacefrisian

    What to learn from the game industry…Dont team up with EA, obvious reasons.

  • Koldan

    Or just maybe this early and fast fixes are really good. And the concept of a codex is outdated and does not fit the times anymore.

    We need a central reference, a living rulebook to give it a name, that is always up to date, instead of
    juggling printed codexes and errata pdfs.

    Look at Infinity for example,
    one official army builder and a wiki, which are ment as the primary rule source. The printed rulebooks are secondary to it, just to have the rules printed, but if there is a conflict, the digital version is right, because every errata, faq, clarification is already added.
    Here you choose a unit in the army builder, and have all rules and stats, either directly or links, pointing to the pages in the wiki.

    With Wh40k the information for one unit is on the page with the unit stats, the page with the faction weapon list, the page with the generic faction skills, the page with the weapon stats, the page with the weapon points and the page with the unit points. Once you have all this, you actually should put the book aside, open google, find the latest errata, read through it and find out, if there is any additional info. In a digital medium all this could be condensed, as Corvus Belli is showing with Infinity. And if Corvus Belli can do this, the big player Games Workshop should be able to pull something off like that.

    I know many die hard Wh40k fans would burn their miniatures again, if that happens. But in my opinion a living rule book is the next step, GW needs to step into the 21st century and tame the paper chaos.

    • NNextremNN

      THIS! So much this! Sadly GW wants to make money with rules.

      • Koldan

        Actually they could still make money with the rules. An app would be an option, or a website with a conscription fee or one time payment for parts, or access only with bought codexes.
        Hell, they could even connect it to a digital White Dwarf Subscription or to the webstore.
        If the account is also used for legally binding purchases, not many people would share their access with others, this way lesser sharing of “books”.

        But i am not sure GW has the needed know-how already.

        • NNextremNN

          From what we have seen from GW if ever this will be their way to go. Probably a subscription for the service and you still have to buy each rulepack. They even made a paid app to roll dice. The know how shouldn’t be hard to buy in. It’s not that magic.

          • Koldan

            On the other hand the Warscroll Builder for AoS seems to be free.
            So i am not sure, if the policy has not changed.
            But still the same problem in AoS, you have the points here, but the also free units stats somewhere else. You are juggling different pdfs and a webpage. At least it looks like that, i am not playing AoS so i am not sure.

            And that is something, that can be done better. GW is spreading the rules into too much different locations.

          • NNextremNN

            AoS even has free warscrolls for units:
            Many interpreted this and their claim we would get free basic rules as a sign we get free data sheets for 40K 8th too … we did not so it’s unlikely they suddenly change that mind.

  • Wow. Abe my man I KNOW you know better than this. It’s like this was written from the standpoint of someone with absolutely NO idea how publishing paper books works. It take months to get physical books from a printer, especially on the scale GW produces. The 40K FB people said C:AM was at the printers before 8th edition was released — and I believe this to be true.

    Sweet Geebuz there is no pleasing you people. From 4th edition all the way through the long nightmare that was 7th edition all I heard was people bitching about how “GW never listens” and “it sure would be nice if GW would release a FAQ” and now they’re actually ON TOP OF THINGS and instead of even recognizing how GREAT that is, what do we get?

    MOAR BITCHIN’, of course.

    Abe I know you man. I respect you. More than that, I like you.

    But this article was trash, and feels like it wasn’t written to enrich the community, but to invite clicks and comments for all the wrong reasons. You’re better than this, man.

    • Karru

      Okay, so, here’s the thing. I’ve been playing since the very beginning of 5th and all the way to 8th edition actively. There is one thing I noticed about the game right out the gate. Proofreading is not a thing in 8th in comparison to the other editions. Yes, this includes 7th as well.

      The amount of massive oversights is insane. One here, another one there, sure, not a big deal, just FAQ that shiz and you are on your way to some balance.

      Then you have 8th. Every single release has massive problems. When the game came out, it was the Stormravens and Character Spam. They fixed Stormravens, but Characters are very much a thing still. Smite Spam is still a thing. Now they changed the Send In the Next Wave Asset while Tide of Traitors remains the exact same. Ogryn Hyperloop, Commissars and Conscripts, all these needed an FAQ fix/nerf to get sorted.

      8th edition is a massive trainwreck when it comes to the codices. There is at least an attempt with the Indexes, but even they had some issues that needed fixing. I mean, just go look at the FAQ for Space Wolves section for crying out loud.

      I barely remember anything catastrophic like this when it came to proofreading their stuff. In 5th, everything was pretty clear, even if towards the end the balance got skewed by the power creep and the lack of talented rule writers.

      • Rob brown

        Wow, talk about blowing things out of all proportion. Catastrophic? I suspect you need to get some perspective on what constitutes a catastrophe. Imperial Guard players feeling hurt because their 3 or 4 point troops are no longer immune to morale or Ogryns not having unlimited invulnerable saves by perversely interpreting a rule a catastrophe does not make.

        8th ed is by far the best incarnation of the game I’ve seen so far and I’ve been playing since citadel miniatures were a thing and I bought them out of the back of white dwarf.

        • Karru

          I was talking about the times BEFORE they fixed them. Those Conscripts not suffering Morale, Ogryn having the ability to throw wounds to each other, Stormravens annihilating armies, Characters blocking Characters. These are the rules I was saying were Catastrophic in comparison to the shenanigans of past editions. While you can say “just use common sense” for some of the rule wording, some of them are very clear and GW has had to completely rewrite the rules or even add rules AFTER the original rule was released. I think something like this has happened maybe once or twice in the past, now it basically happens with each new codex release.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            4th, 5th, 6th and 7th editions were just modifications of 3rd edition. 8th edition is the first real overhaul the game has had since 1998. Of course previous editions were smoother, they had 20 years of refinement.

          • ZeeLobby

            This is very true. That said. They were really refined around 5th, then they just started bloating. Sadly we see a fair amount of bloat added in 7th carrying over to 8th, while many of the refined rules were dropped.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            Yes, the system was pretty good around 5th. It needed some tweaks to make it better (like wound allocation and unkillable rhinos) but on the whole, that was the golden age.

            Games naturally acquire more and more sub systems as it ages. 20 years of bloat was enough, it was time to start from zero again.

          • ZeeLobby

            Yeah. My issue is the bloat they carried over. Non-restrictive force organizations, ally imbalances, etc. IF they had dropped those, it would have been refreshing. As it is, it feels different but samey.

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            I bet GW felt like they HAD to allow allies and stuff because people had built whole armies around the concept. Lots of people would have been pissed if they had dropped it. Same thing with all the different detachments.

          • ZeeLobby

            Oh, yeah. I totally get it. Just don’t see that as a good enough reason to continue implementing poor design if the whole purpose of 8th was streamlining. It just seems contradictory to me, all imo of-course. I understand it would have hurt those who did such things, but now we have an almost unrestricted game system, and I’m just not sure how they’ll balance it.

          • Karru

            While I see your point, there is still something very important to note here. As new codices are released, the balance gets more and more skewed, more problems arise, the need for constant fixing and rule adding becomes the norm. If this is the quality we can expect from GW for the next 5-ish years, I don’t see it being a good thing.

            Why buy any codex or rulebook, since you know it will already be out of date in less than a month?

          • Red_Five_Standing_By

            Because they are not going to print an updated codex and you cannot play that faction without the codex?

            Also, the amount of changes thus far are pretty tame. if you have trouble remembering, just print the FAQed wording out and tape it in the codex next to the unit entry.

  • James Regan

    I think there’s a few problems with the analysis presented here:
    Firstly, before they started doing FAQs, GW’s proof-reading or balance wasn’t any better. Rather than releasing a ‘broken game’ then patching it, they just released a broken game then left it broken. Patches are, no matter the lack of change to their ability to write balanced rules, an improvement over the old ‘just wait for the next codex/edition’ policy.
    Secondly, I think the yearly supplements generals handbook style allow for better rules than the old ‘editions’ blueprint. It’s a bit tough now, as we’ve had the index problem already, but if this replaces editions, you’re better off overall than if 9th required another round of indexes (presuming you bought at least both parts of the imperial index, or 2 indices for separate forces, which i find likely, especially amongst competitive players who’ve been noting the ‘imperial soup’ lists). Other than that, generals handbook let them put points back into AoS, something I think they were genuinely trying to avoid

  • IronMaster

    Having had the experience of not having FAQs for months, and a year in some places, I’m a fan of the updates. The only fear I have in it is patching too quickly without allowing the other books to settle in and possibly balance out what’s going on.

    Case in point with the Commissar; if other armies are getting similar strengths to combat morale, it counters the strength of the Commissar. As has been said frequently on these threads as well, I think a change to conscripts would have been more warranted than a change to the Commissar itself.

  • Nyyppä

    So what? If they decide to patch my army so that it can be played like they say it’s designed to be played I’m getting straight back in to the game. Before that though nothing short of them paying me a reasonable salary for participating is going to get me playing or buying more of their products.

    The way they sometimes actually indirectly admit that they messed up royally and the fix the problem is a good thing. It does not matter if the fix is in the codex or not as long as it’s fixed.

  • generalchaos34

    Have we already forgotten the ages of no FAQ for months to years? Having things being obviously broken for so long that the ITC had to be created just to address those issues? Heck, even if they did nerf my beloved commissars that means they are actively trying to make the game better. There isn’t a lot of in between here and everyone is going to have an opinion on “how they think it should have been.” I for one would rather have the company tell us “This is how its going to be” instead of the rest of us trying desperately to find a solution no one can agree on. Even if the GW is FAQ isn’t the best it will still be the official word on how a rule will be interpreted.

  • Would you rather they go back to the days where they didn’t release any FAQs at all? and didn’t address major game balance issues for years in between codex releases?

    This is a GOOD thing.

    These books are sent to the printers months in advance, so they are bound to notice typo’s and bad wording in the interim. Releasing a FAQ day 1 is just admitting they made a typo.

    Releasing an errata (completely changing a rule) so soon after release is the games designers admitting they made a mistake. After a couple embarrassing changes like this they’ll hopefully be more careful in play testing moving forward.

  • Tim

    I mean you seem to have a fundamental misunderstanding of how them producing codices work. You say nothing has happened since the release of the codex and the FAQ, while that’s true it misses the point. Several months (6 is the latest estimate I’ve heard) happened between the book going to the printers and being released.

  • Nosebleed

    Can’t say much about “missing” features, but a ‘living’ ruleset is something players want for the longest time.

    “Day 1” FAQs are fine and is good for the game. The challenge lies in wanting to sell hard copies of rules whilst making the ruleset live.

    GW should take some notes at how PP does this. So far, it’s working for them.

    • ZeeLobby

      Can’t agree more. We’re past the point of digital up-to-date rules for 40K.

  • Pat H

    I’d rather the “day one patch” FAQs than letting issues fester for months or years as they’ve done in the past. GW is actually listening to player feedback and making adjustments accordingly, something people have been yelling at them to do for years.

  • Admiral Raptor

    It’s 2017, let’s ditch the print books and go full digital. That way immediately out of date rules aren’t a problem anymore.

    • Valeli

      I almost disagree, because I really like the print books and ebooks weird me out.

      If GW is going to do fast and frequent updates though, I have to admit you’ve got a good point here.

    • SilentPony

      Problem is not everyone has an ebook reader. What’s a smartphone cost? Or a tablet?
      That’s going from the price of a printed book, say $40, to a discounted $20 because its digital, plus an extra $200+ for a device that can run an ebook reader.

      • Nwttp

        You can get an ebook reader for like 15 dollars

    • Red_Five_Standing_By

      Because watching people endlessly fumble with their digital rulebooks is so exciting.

  • SilentPony

    Come on guys, everyone complained 7th was broken, and now GW is ‘patching’ 8th so often the Tournament players don’t have time to break the game!
    Good! Great! They never belonged here to begin with!

    but to play devil’s advocate, what is buying a miniature if not IRL DLC?

    • Valeli

      According to the “old” GW, buying a mini was buying the only main product they sold rather than dlc for a game…

      That said, even with the new one I don’t think it’s any more dlc than buying chess pieces for a chess board would be. And that’s not.

      It comes with the board there. All the minis don’t come with the starter set because you don’t need or want all though. And, obviously, you get the freedom to pick your line up of chess pieces here.

      • SilentPony

        To expand on that chess analogy, the GW tables don’t come with minies already. And you’ll be hard pressed to find a chess board sold without pieces.
        Likewise you can’t play a game will less than the full amount of chess pieces.

        GW is like a chess game where each piece is sold separately, you can play with any amount of pieces, and your opponent can bring any combination of pieces they want, including all Queens and no King.

  • Valeli

    GW is emulating the gaming industry? I don’t think I buy the premise of this article at all. And I certainly don’t agree that faq’s / updates to fix problematic stuff the devs missed is bad.

    There’s a world of difference between that and intentionally pushing stuff out early, consequences be damned. I don’t think deadlines were the cause of these rules you issues at all.

  • garry

    GW themselves have said why this is the case. It takes months of production to get the product read ahead of time. Testing wise 20/30/100 people won’t find all the bugs and issues that hundreds of thousands (or even millions) will.

    The AM codex is a good example and you can watch frontline gamings responce to see the lag time that was thier. The book index came down and they didn’t even think commisars existed and they hjad been play testing it since febuyaury or march along with a clutch of american and european ‘professionals.’ None of them saw brims and concripts being waht they became.

    Then go to the first major and a few people bring concript or infantry spam, and every one sees how powerful concripts are. Everyone start gearing to either be or beat the concripts, and the concripts come out on top. The issue at first seems small like maybe it’s thier damage out put. This is the problem thatr is addressed in the codex and for 3 months printing starts. However, alot on stuff can happen in 3 months. In those 3 months we saw more wide spread concript spam and its true power really became clear, but by this time the goose is to cooked and ready to be served. SO instead they Opt to put it into the FAQ ASAP.

    This problem is more likely to be an issues for GW because they don’t have the luxury of digital. They sell books. The print time even in this day and age is considerable. I know as much because to teach one of my classes and bringing off 40, 400 page book for my students took 3 weeks at a private printing firm.

    More hilariously. You have people in here complaining about shortages of the same book. Which really just means the complaint here is “do everything better.”

  • jhopkins

    This is idiotic even for BLoS.

    Nobody at GW cares about video games beyond the royalty check. Back in the day, GW said that the multi-player version of their games were table top only.

    Maybe think a little bit before you write an article and stop being stupid.

    These books were printed months ago. GW had some folks outside of GW play test 8th (ITC folks, NoVA folks, etc). Clearly the play test was not perfect (much, much better than the past) and some combos got missed and now abused.

    So, GW is doing the best they can given that the codex was printed a long time ago and thousands of games have been played since the book was printed.

  • LordKrungharr

    What system was that space hulk game on?

    • Commissar Molotov

      3DO, Sega Saturn, PS1 and Microsoft computer. It was a lot of fun!

  • Frank Krifka


    “It takes too long to get FAQ’s. GW should really speed up the process, there’s no reason to wait months to get our questions answered.”

    “FAQ’s are coming way too fast, I mean couldn’t they get it absolutely perfect the first time?”

    Christ. Nearly every software development company I know considers the launch of of a product beta until the first patch. That’s a verbatim quote for a software engineer friend of mine that worked for Apple in the early 00’s.

    A tabletop game has nearly as much complexity as video game or piece of software or masters dissertation. It took me a year to write my thesis, 4 months to proofread/edit it, and another couple of weeks having friends and colleagues edit and proofread it. I went back and took a look at it last week (10 years on) and there was a typo on the first %#$&ing page. It wasn’t even a difficult or obscure word. Sometimes things slip through the cracks. It’s just the way things are.

    • JJ

      “FAQ’s are coming way too fast,” AKA I didn’t get a chance to exploit this yet!

  • memitchell

    Trying to “fix” the new tournament hotness seems arbitrary and patchy. And, then, getting the fix wrong is simply bad game design. The new Commissar Summary Execution rule is unnecessary. And,fundamentally flawed. It just does not work well with 8th edition Morale rules. On top of all that, even if the AM army has 20 Commissars, only the first Failed Morale check within 6″ of a Commissar triggers Summary Execution. And, the player has no control over using it, even if it will do more harm than good. That looks like it was slapped together by someone who was in a hurry to get somewhere else.

    • Rob brown

      It isnt just tournament players that found fighting Imperial Guard, tedious, frustrating and extremely un-fun!

  • lemt

    I have to say I prefer the new system. It’s much MUCH better than having to wait for years and even EDITIONS to get new rules for some armies. And hey, I feel no pity for people who jump to the “this is SO OP” bandwagon and mass-buy stuff without waiting a couple of weeks for the FAQ to come out.

  • Ninety

    This is fairly naive. They’ve repeatedly said the codices were out to print months ago. Saying that nothing has happened between the IG codex release and now is immaterial, because a whole lot has happened between the time the IG codex was finished and now. In other words, this FAQ isn’t some fresh-out-the-box backpedal, it’s likely been planned for after the IG codex release for a ling time now.

  • Marco Marantz

    Damn the internet for creating lazy, incompetent programmers. Before the internet games could not be patched so they had to work. The vast majority did. It is ironic that I remember one classic case of a game that didnt was a warhammer epic 40K; Final Liberation, which had a number of bugs.

    • NNextremNN

      Do you remember the old days where things like gameboy games were release on a module with no way to patch it? Leaving critical bugs in those meant to reorder and rewrite them or even completely replace them. I don’t remember them ever to this. Except for Pokémon Ruby/Sapphire (didn’t had these) which had a bug where you could send them your edition to get it fixed and got a shiny Pokémon as excuse. Today you can just patch them and anything is fine.