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40K: Sector Mechanicus Rules Too Much?

3 Minute Read
Apr 13

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

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

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

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

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



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

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

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

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

Regardless – this terrain is serious fun to assemble.

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


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


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