Wednesday, September 26, 2018

40k Narrative Campaign Pack for Download: Verdict of Mirandus (4 Players)

Recently BOLS released an article on narrative campaigns, and I found it quite engaging as it discussed an area of 40k that I'm very interested in, but one that I feel GW has been a bit slack in supporting.

As such, I spent quite a bit of time developing a campaign for some local players.  This pack is the result of the campaign, providing a set of generic rules able to be used for any four forces, along with the narrative story of the campaign, and the actual game results from each Chapter.

Note that that my approach to this story was to reveal the actual story like a serial, with each new chapter being shared only after the completion of the prior chapter, and then the epilogue and conclusion were released after the campaign play had completed.  This should provide a building block for any group of armies, allowing the person running the campaign to spend more time developing the story and making tweaks to fit their own needs. 

In the case of our play it was Ulthwe, Deathguard, Necrons, and Astra Militarum.

Download it below!

Download: Verdict of Mirandus Campaign Pack

Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Harlequin thoughts, and the Unplayable Webway Gate

With the release of the new Harlequins codex I picked up the stunning new Webway gate. With a few extra models painted and the gate I completed my Harlequin force and added them up to a surprising 2500 pts exactly! It's a massive allied force to my Ulthwe warhost.

I've gotten in a few games with them, tabling an Imperial Soup army consisting of Greyknights and Gulliman. I tabled them in turn 4. An opponent using 1ksons conceded halfway through his shooting phase on turn 1 as I played the 2 CP Stratagem to get them -1 to hit, on top of the psychic power.

For people excited to try out the "Great Harlequin"Stratagem... I've found it overpriced for its effect. I expect in future games I'll skip it and make use of the CPs in game. If it had a more profound effect, or only cost a single CP I'd reconsider and use it again.

Sky Weavers with Haywire Cannons are surprisingly versatile and I highly recommend them.  Neuro Disruptors are still disappointing and should wound on a 2+ against infantry.

One of the things I did in these games is test out the Webway Gate. It's a beautiful model, but it's rules are a hot mess. These are the problems and solutions as I see them -


1) Asuryani and Drukhari do not ave access to gate stratagems.

Give them access to generic versions.

2) deployment for gate is too restrictive.

Reduce distance from other terrain features to 1" rather than 3" and reduce the 12" distance from enemy deployment to 3", as it becomes all but impossible to actually place on most boards.

3) deployed units are stranded with no protection and are unlikely to contribute.

Allow units to move after deploying as if they disembarked from a transport.

4) gate has no use beyond first or second turn as it provides no cover.

Make gate offer aura of protection, +1 to save, for units wholly within 3"

5) it's too easy to cheaply prevent large models like Wraithknight from entering play with a single cheap model.

Instead of deploying "wholly within" 3" change the rule so that all deployed models must be within 3", this forcing an opponent to have a tough choice about how they're willing to stop you deploying.

No single one of these changes is really sufficient to make the gate attractive. It really needs all 5 to make it viable for play.

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

Aeldari Community Rules Update

After the changes in Chapter Approved, it put the Phantom in a more awkward spot.  It felt out of place at 2400 pts and still it can be easily obliterated by a Warhound.  In workshopping and tweaking one thing became readily apparent... the MACRO rule has to change.  For this purpose we've workshopped it to "Macro weapons are heavy weapons that may not fire overwatch.  In addition successful invulnerable saves must be rerolled against Macro Weapons."  This is for all weapons with the MACRO rule and the rule now scales appropriately rather than being absurdly good against Titanic units and useless against non-titanic weapons.

From there it became a matter of fine tuning units, which mostly only took minor changes and point adjustments to keep them in line with other titanic units.  The Phantom, however, still needed a lot of playtesting.   Even after the considerable number of changes I made the Phantom was, we were shocked to find, still bad.  Against an equal points force it was often in its last or next to last tier by the end of the first turn, regardless of which player went first.  It never survived the second turn.  After testing step by step we found the two major issues were 1) it took damage too quickly, and 2) the Macro Weapons didn't do enough damage, even against non-titanic units (why is a Leman Russ able to shrug off a D Bombard?).  Then we found what was really the sweet spot:

With the save already at 2+ and the T at 12, I was leaning to giving it a -1 to hit all the time, not just when it charged or assaulted, but at the suggestion of others tried T14, and to my surprise that small tweak seemed to slow things down a bit, keeping the Phantom in the second tier by the end of the first turn.  In addition the tweaked macro weapons (originally tested as "fires twice at the same target") made the primary weapons feel substantially dangerous, even moreso than the other solid weapons. 

Above: My favourite moment from playtesting.

With these changes it sits between the Reaver and Warlord and is pointed accordingly.

For those wanting an updated version the rules they can be found: HERE
Please note: Damage Tiers or on the fluff/image page.