Codex: Space Marines Review Part 4 – Warlord Traits

Good day, fellow carbon-based sentient lifeforms! Today we continue our review of the new Space Marines Codex with a look at their Warlord traits.

One change from 7th that I particularly like in 8th is that you get to pick your Trait. This is a huge game-changer as you can tailor your Trait to maximise the effectiveness of your force rather than picking a table and hoping for the best.

Much like the Stratagems we looked at in my last article, the new Warlord Traits are a bit hit-and-miss. This can be a bit of a problem if you are using named Characters as they HAVE to use their Chapter-specific Traits, and unfortunately some of these are real stinkers… Anywho, let’s dive in, shall we?

Generic Traits

  • Angel of Death: -1 Ld to enemy units with 6 inches of the Warlord. Not the worst Trait in the world, but so many armies have ways to mitigate (or completely ignore) it that it’s best to go with one of the other Traits on offer.
  • The Imperium’s Sword: Warlord gains 1 extra attack on the charge and rerolls failed charge moves. This one is relatively bad. I say relatively because it’s not bad in and of itself, but compared to some of the other ones available, it’s a bit meh.
  • Iron Resolve: Warlord gains 6+ FNP and an extra Wound. Like Imperium’s Sword, this Trait isn’t horrible, but it falls a bit short compared to, say…
  • Storm of Fire: Units with 6 inches of the Warlord who roll a 6+ to wound improve the AP of their weapon by 1. DING DING DING! We have a winner! On its own, this won’t significantly improve your ranged damage output, but when you combine it with the Chapter Master + Lieutenant combo, it starts to add up quite a bit. The fact that Guilliman has to take the Ultra Trait when he’s your Warlord is one of the few downsides to taking him, because he’d be even better with this Trait (not that said Ultra WT is bad – far from it, as we shall see shortly). Although, technically, if you don’t mind giving up 3 Command Points, you could make some other Character your Warlord and avoid having to use the Ultra Trait… Not sure that’s worth it.
  • Rites of War: Units within 6 inches auto-pass Morale tests. With ATSKNF already letting you reroll failed Morale tests, and with the potential addition of the Ld bonus brought to you by the Ultramarine Chapter Tactic, how much more protection from Ld-based casualties do you really need?
  • Champion of Humanity: Warlord gains +1 to Hit and Wound rolls when fighting Characters. This is way way too situational to be any good, really.

Chapter-Specific Traits

  • Adept of the Codex (Ultramarines): Every time you use a Command Point, roll a D6. On a 5+, this Command Point is refunded. Like I alluded to earlier, the Ultramarine Trait is not bad at all. Assuming you are running Bobby G alongside a Battalion, you essentially should get to play with 12 Command Points instead of 9, given average rolling. That’s nothing to spit at. Still not as good as Storm of Fire, in my opinion, but a close second for sure.
  • Deadly Hunter (White Scars): When the Warlord makes a charge, the charged unit takes a Mortal Wound on a 4+. Assuming you make every charge move and roll average on triggering this, that only means 3-4 Mortal Wounds caused to your opponent’s army during the whole game. Not good.
  • Architect of War (Imperial Fists): Units within 6 inches of the Warlord and in cover get a +1 bonus to their save rolls versus AP -1 weapons. This is not completely awful and helps make up a bit for the relative meh-ness of the Fists’ Chapter Tactic. Nevertheless, Lysander doesn’t want to be sitting in cover, and your non-Unique Characters should be picking some other Trait in most cases.
  • Tenacious Opponent (Crimson Fist): Warlord gets D3 extra attacks in fight phase if there are more than 10 enemy models within 6 inches of him. Wow that’s bad! Don’t touch this with a 10-foot pole!
  • Oathkeeper (Black Templars): Warlord makes 6 inch Heroic Interventions. My word that’s bad! Imperial Fist 2nd Founding Chapters certainly got the short end of the stick when it came to Traits, eh?
  • Anvil of Strength (Salamanders): Warlord gets +1 Strength. Well… it’s better than what the Templars and Mexican Marines got…
  • Silent Stalker (Raven Guard): Enemy can’t fire Overwatch at your Warlord. Somewhat useful to deny Overwatch to a unit about to get gangbanged by a RG Warlord and his crew, but still falls well short of some of the other Traits available.
  • Merciless Logic (Iron Hands): Generates an extra attack on a 6+ to hit. So even with a Primaris Captain with his 5 attacks, you’re not even statistically sure to generate an extra attack. Avoid like the plague.

So the standouts are Storm of Fire and the Ultramarine Trait (man, GW is certainly piling on the Smurf love this edition, aren’t they?).

EDIT: As was suggested by Toast, I’m going to expand upon a bit here to talk about when to pick which Trait. As I stated in my answer to him, it’s usually best to plan your list around a pre-determined Trait so as to maximise the overall effectiveness of your list. For example, a Ravenguard gunline can be built around Storm of Fire by going with the Dynamic Duo (Chapter Master/Lieutenant combo) giving rerolls to a bunch of Razorbacks, Dreadnoughts and your pick of shooty Infantry – since you already want to keep a fair number of shooty units within 6 inches of your Characters anyways so they get those tasty rerolls, Storm of Fire is a natural fit.

For a more assault-oriented list, it gets a bit murkier because none of the choppy-enabling Traits stand out as starkly as Storm of Fire does for shooty lists. The first question you should ask yourself is: is Storm of Fire still the best Trait I can use here? If your assault element still has a bunch of guns it can use, the answer may be yes. Should that not be the case, you’re going to have to think a bit. What options do you have? Are you playing Ultramarines? Well ok, Adept of the Codex is probably going to be a good thing to have if you have a decent-ish amount of Command Points. Not playing Ultramarines? Ok, well, that requires further decisions – Imperium’s Sword will give you that important extra reliability to get your charges off while doing a big more damage, while Iron Resolve will make it a bit harder for your opponent to score Slay the Warlord. Those perks are a bit sad compared to what Storm of Fire brings to the game, but it is what it is.

There will be times, however, where your primary decision factor for picking a certain Trait is going to take a backseat to some other priority. For example, if you’re facing a list with a lot of Ld-decreasing abilities, it may be worthwhile to think about Rites of War instead of Storm of Fire. On the flipside, you may have opportunities to increase your effectiveness beyond what your default levels. For example, an assault-oriented Warlord comes up against an army highly susceptible to Morale damage – perhaps you should consider going with Angel of Death instead of the Imperium’s Sword/Iron Resolve you normally would have gone with. Given the incredibly varied number of factors such a decision needs to take into account (the two most important ones being the specifics of your lists and those of your opponent’s), it’s impossible to cover all possibilities. Therefor, my advice is to get to know each Trait by heart so you’ll be able to develop an instinctive grasp of when to switch out your “default” Trait for something else.

That’s it for now. See you next time, true believers!

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128 responses to Codex: Space Marines Review Part 4 – Warlord Traits

Suggestion; could you say what on earth the traits you’re talking about are, for the sake of those who don’t have the codex with them (or at all) while reading the opinions?

Much obliged 😎

You shouldn't have to reference fucking 1d4chan to understand a 3++ article. This is just lazy writing.

So how many pop up ads are you willing to deal with… ;)?

Kidding but expect the top banner to be updated soon given that all those companies no longer pay for their ads but we will never cover our site with ads like other websites. I'd much rather people subscribe through Patreon if they feel like it or clicking through Youtube ads as we get videos going again.

You're free to take your valuable time elsewhere, you know. No one's forcing you to read this at gunpoint, as best as I can figure.


Appreciate that you're trying to help, but I had already added a short description of the Traits. There was no need to add the pictures, especially without asking. Thanks.

As the above poster pointed out, your post made me have to go look for the codex and have it on hand to know what the f*** you were referring to exactly in these opinions. Also not sure whom exactly the 'mexican marines' are, but i'm pretty sure that was offensive regardless. Please leave your bigotry out of your reviews. Thanks bud.

When he says "mexican marines" he means the Crimson Fists. They're more Spanish than Mexican imo but I agree with you that the article could have been better written.

Yes, the "Mexican Marines" are the Crimson Fist. How that's offensive… I don't know. Since when did "Mexican" become a derogatory term?

-shrugs-. Well, I know that there's been stuff about them for awhile, but I suspect since a major political figure of some standing in the Western World used racial fears about them in order to win some random country's election.

Racial descriptors are problematic. Almost any racial descriptor CAN be derogatory, and no ACTUAL (as opposed to specifically created to be derogatory) racial term automatically is, but it depends a lot on how the person making the comment thinks, and how the audience thinks they think.

Well, just so we're 100% clear, I have absolutely nothing against Mexicans. I quite like them, actually.

“Mexican” isn’t a racial description, there are Mexican citizens of every racial category you care to name. Which shouldn’t be surprising considering it is the eleventh most populous country in the world according to the most recent numbers that I can find. Approximately 47-50% of the population is classified as “White” in official census reporting, 20-23% is classified as Indigenous, and there are sizable communities of Mexicans with Asian and/or Arabic ancestry too.

The “Mexican Marine” meme is an absolutely ludicrous one based on little more than the fact that most of the named Crimson Fists characters have Spanish first names… Pedro Kantor first showed up in the original Rogue Trader rulebook and was a thinly veiled reference to Peter Cantor. Most of the named Crimson Fists from back in the Rogue Trader / Second Edition era have names derived from famous* Portuguese and Spanish explorers and conquistadors.

* Well, “famous” for people like me that have made the First through Third Crusades and the Reconquista a major focus of their academic life. The Spanish and Portuguese empires’ exploration and conquest of the New World happened centuries later, but there’s a fair bit about the later period that you absorb by sheer osmosis when studying the earlier periods.

True. Ok, replace "racial descriptor" with "national descriptor", although there's still a lot of politicised anti mexcian racism atm.

A person cannot be racist against a national origin, seriously, replace the word “Mexican” with any other demonym and you’ll see how silly it sounds: ‘anti-Canadian racism’ or ‘anti-Australian racism.’ It just doesn’t work.

The word your looking for is xenophobia, the fear of people from foreign countries.

By a literal meaning of the word, you are correc.t However, by common usage – no. You absolutely can be "racist" against a national origin. What, exactly, do you think "We have to build a wall to stop the Mexicans" is if not racism?

Hell, on a far lesser level, I've experienced similar – I'm from England. I now live in Scotland. During Indyref, some of the more…aggressive..Scots Nationalists didn't care about my skin tone. But they very much did care about my nationality.

Look at the comments about the Irish that we've had throughout history. Or the English of the French, or the Scottish. The Scottish towards the English. The stereotypy of the Germans.

Also, "race" doesn't necessarily only refer to phenotypical origin. Wiki includes National Affliliation as part of Race.

Sorry, but you are wrong. It's just as racist to go "Ah, Welshmen are all Sheepshaggers" or "Australians are all criminals because that's where they came from" as it is to go "All non-whites are untrustworthy".

Common usage of specific terminology is often wrong. See for instance the commonly asserted argument that the Nazi Party or Fascists were not socialists. I am not defending xenophobia here nor am i defending racism, I just prefer that people use the terminology correctly.

Xenophobia and racism are often conflated, mostly because common usage tends to conflate nationality with ethnicity… People will talk about “Chinese” or “Haitians” or “Welsh” and use them to mean one or both. One- or two-hundred years ago, maybe, this would have worked better when nations were far more likely to be ethnically homogeneous than today, but, well even then it was imperfect.

Consider the famous actress Charlize Theron. Theron was born in Benoni, in the then-Transvaal Province (currently in the Gauteng Province) of South Africa and she still has South African citizenship in addition to her having become an American citizen in 2007. She is African-American… I mean, she is LITERALLY an American who was born in Africa. Hell, Theron can trace her family tree (on her paternal side) to the Huguenots who settled in the Cape of Good Hope in the 1670s… only five decades after the first Africans reached the English colonies in the future United States in 1619.

But, because people tend to conflate “race” and “ethnicity” and “nationality” in their everyday speech, if I were to call Charlize Theron a great “African-American actress” people would probably scream all sorts of abuse at me. Despite the fact that she’s objectively and indisputably African, American, and an actress. The “great” bit is subjective, but she’s got a pile of awards and a long list of credits in high grossing movies, so even that’s a pretty sound assertion.

All of this has nothing to do with toy soldiers, of course, but I do enjoy a good rant.

Sure, but the second you discriminate based on the nationality, this becomes racism. Remember, "Race" as a term CAN be used to apply to a nationality (As wiki says).

Xenophobia is about the unknown, the different. Racism (or sexism, or Ableism, etc) is about declaring a group has a specific trait, and then discriminating against them based on that percieved trait. For example, at the moment, in Britain, we have the stereotype that the Polish are shiftless people who are only coming here to get welfare. This is not xenophobia. We are not intimidated by the unknown. It is racism.

The problem is that you are applying 'racism' in a very narrow, literal way, and that simply doesn't match up with what the ism actually involves. Trump relied on anti-Mexican racism for much of his election. There's a huge amount of Anti-English Racism that built up during Indyref. There's an IMMENSE pool of anti-European racism that's affecting both Brexit and how Brexit is being conducted.d

Despite the fact that this is all anti-national, rather than anti phenotypical race, this is still classified as racism, because Nationalism has a different meaning.

I agree, people should use the proper terminology, but xenophobic discrimination and "racial" discrimination come from different places. Xenophobia is discriminating against someone for being different ( a lot of homophobia comes under this), or unknown. Racism is "This stereotypical trait is possessed by your group". It's NOT limited to differrent skin tone.

In the case of Charlize Theron – she isn't "african". She is South African. Africa is not a nation. She is described as a South African/American Actress, therefore I doubt you'd get abused for saying this.

You can rant away all you want, but you are still wrong. Racism is not restricted to phenotype, because part of the definition of what makes a 'race' is national. Germans are efficient and emotionless. Americans are loud and obnoxious. Australians are drunk. English people are boring. Scottish people are aggressive. Mexicans are criminals. The French are shiftless. These are all RACIST stereotypes, not 'xenophobic' ones.

The point with lampshading them as 'mexican marines' is not to refer to a trait as mexican in a derogatory way, but to call attention to how lazy GW is with group identities. He's making fun of GW's lazy writing, not the Crimson Fists or Mexicans.

There's a lot of ways to portray diversity in a fictional setting, some good, some bad. Deciding one chapter is the hispanic chapter and naming their commander Pedro is not one of the good ways.

Yep. GW is just incredibly lazy in general, and the "theme" of many Marine Chapters is just very representative of this. I mean, we have the Roman Marines (Ultras), the Mongol Marines (White Scars), the Teutonic Knight Marines (Black Templars), The Greek Marines (Minotaurs), the African Marines (Salamanders) on top of the aforementioned Mexican Marines…

I need to set this thing to receive notifications. I didn't even realize I started a shitstorm here. In any case, being latino myself I totally raised an eyebrow at the "Mexican Marine" thing. Interestingly enough at no point in my decade+ of playing 40k did I ever get the feeling that "Hey Crimson Fists sound like a bunch of Mexican names" and here is why….Mexicans aren't the only people that speak spanish. I might be wrong and things may have changed but Spanish is one of the most languages most spoken world wide, if what I read from another poster above is true then apparently Crimson Fists are named after famous 'conquistadors' in which case following what you just wrote I agree Ultramarines (my favorite chapter) are totally based of Romans. Hard to miss the Mongol reference of the white scars. Salamanders on the other hand I was excited for "hey some black dudes in my favorite hobby! finally some representation for the rest of us!" then i read their fluff and they aren't even really 'black dudes' what a waste…more like space marines wearing black face, unlike the other chapters I can't even look at their names and be like 'yeah that sounds like a black dude's name' just no I don't see the correlation, but it would've certainly been nice, like getting more black/latino super heroes so halloween can be more exciting, I can't be deadpool EVERY year…i mean I can, I probably want to, but options man, we all love options…lord knows I wish Cloud Strife was several shades darker. Back to the topic on hand…instead of Mexican Marines which given the current political climate screams to me 'bigotry at play' it would be more app to call them Spaniard Marines, wouldn't you agree? Mexicans weren't the 'conquistadores' that was all Spain. You wouldn't call Smurfs the Italian Chapter right? You wouldn't call White Scars"The Kim Jong Un Marines". Anyway I want to thank everyone the discussion was pretty good regarding this racial thing. For all it's worth I believe Desc440 meant no harm by it, most people (myself included) jokes about other races/nationalities and stereotypes. I do think though that it's important to be mindful of when we make such jokes, the platform used to tell them, and how sure are we that we told it in a way that people 'get it'.


For what it’s worth, I didn’t come up with the Mexican Marines meme. It predates The Orange One’s political ascenscion by some time. It may not have been as prevalently understood as I thought it was. Apologies for any offense caused.

“Portuguese and Spaniard Marines” would be more accurate, but “Mexican Marines” has that lovely alliteration that makes for a more memorable nickname. I don’t think that most people who use it intend it as derogatory, or at least, not derogatory of Hispanic people and culture. Most probably only mean it as a bit of an “elbow to the ribs” bit of team rivalry banter, much the same way that people who play Bretonnia get hit with memes based on French stereotypes or people who play Khador get hit with memes based on Soviet Russia…

WH40k makes ample use of the “Fantasy Counterpart Culture” trope, largely due to its origins as a parody of Seventies and Sixties era science fiction and mockery of Eighties era politics. Ghazghkull Mag Uruk Thraka was named after the Prime Minister at the time: Margaret Thatcher.

Fast-forward thirty years and many of the old parodic references are now buried under decades of making the game more serious, new generations of gamers that just don’t “get it,” and of course spreading far outside the East Midlands to a global audience that also doesn’t understand the references. Then, factor in modern internet culture and the “meme magic” of idiots on 4chan…

It’s a mess.

Bleeping isn't a thing anymore? I thought it still was, come on now Kirby after all these years this is gonna be the hard pill to swallow? You are a living vaccum, suck it up.

Middling article for me. Feels like when you really like something, there's a ton of analysis and explanation why, but when something is 'bad bad bad' that's all that's shared. Not why it's bad, or how it could be used to its full effect (even if it isn't the best option). This may be my fault and I'm expecting something different from the review, but I think it would be beneficial if we could see the author's insight applied throughout rather than just on the 'winners', so to speak.

*shrugs* I understand where you're coming from, but I feel like there's little point in writing a novel on why something is bad or how to use something that's bad – I concentrate on the "good" things because my interest lies in maximising the effectiveness of our lists. And to a large extent, I think enough of the intelligence of you, the reader, to be able to "fill in the blanks" when I think something is obvious enough that I only need to point you in the general direction of the answer. I mean, do I REALLY need to explain in detail why having an extra 3 inch to do an Heroic Intervention is loads worse than recuperating spent Command Points on a 5+?

Oh man, Senpai noticed me.

I will say I really appreciated your edit to the post. I will also say that my intelligence in this hobby is closer to the newbie side (I haven't played any matched games since 3rd edition, and given how young I was I bet I was wrong on, like. everything). Good to know your audience now, though – definitely helps understand where you're coming from with these reviews. I'll swing back around with the other parts once I get more experience in the trenches, as it were.

I may have overestimated the obviousness of some of my conclusions on my first run through of this article – I will endeavour to be a bit more explicit in presenting my thinking in the future. Hopefully this will avoid further confusion. Hope you will visit again before long! Cheers1

Sometimes the answer really is that simple though. Something like Iron Hands Merciless Logic just doesn't warrant any consideration at all (though I'm sure you'll see an article on BoLS saying otherwise soon). There's a lot of other tactics blogs that get tied down in trying to find 'situational value' in bad units or choices, this one tends to cut right past that and not waste your time. I find it rather refreshing.

To be fair, each author is different. Puppy will wax and wane lyrical about certain things and go into a lot more detail about them for example but at some point there is also a point where no analysis is necessary to point out something is bad compared to something else. With simple options like Relics, Stratagems and Warlord traits for example, some of them are always going to be just simply better (like +2S over +1S better).

Now I'm not saying this may be the case here, I personally may have combined those three posts into one for example knowing that there might not have been as much analysis while Desc may have come from the perspective it will be easier for people to find when they are separated. Neither is the wrong nor right way but Desc, and 3++ in general, have shown they will happily respond to questions in the comments.

Opportunity cost. If you take the Templar trait, you're not taking one of the other, better ones.

Wow "This is good. This is bad. This is bad. This is bad. This is would be good, if there weren't other good things. This is bad."

I mean, technically it's a review…

It's pretty sad that 1d4chan now has more in-depth codex reviews than 3++.

How much more indepth an explanation of why Deadly Hunter or Merciless Logic are bad do you need? As Aquila says above, I'm not going to waste your time finding extremely situational cases where one of the really bad Trait is going to be marginaly useful. If that's what you are looking for, please do head on down to BoLS.

You keep talking about wasting time. Writing a codex review without any actual critical thought to it is the time waster here. If you don't have anything to say, why are you writing?

Like you say, I should go elsewhere if I want something else. I guess 3++ is the new YTTH.

Don't mistake keeping it short and sweet to not having applied critical thought. I most certainly do think about the stuff I'm covering quite a bit – but sometime there really just isn't much to say.

If prefer a torrent of verbal diarhea that misleads you into thinking something is good when it is not, then you are indeed in the wrong place. Sorry to hit on BoLS again, but it sounds like it is exactly what you are looking for.

BoLS is exactly the kind of place where I find this "bad. good. bad. bad." sort of empty review. Not just the flavor of the month but the whole codex. 3++ was where I looked for the meat. Guess that meat is being served up by a 2nd rate Stelek now.

Show your work. Otherwise you're being outshined by Frontline & 1d4chan of all places.

I don't think it's fair to say that 3plusplus is outshone by Frontline as a matter of course – more accurate would be "All current 40k sources are outshone by whoever Sean's writing for this week", because I think it would be entirely fair to say that AbusePuppy is the only person writing consistently high-quality stuff and has been since the tail end of 5th edition.

Frontline and 1d4Chan tend too simply repeat the stats found in the book(s) and render an opinion of them. 3++ is one of the few places that actually offers “Why” and “How” in addition to the “What” when discussing tactics and reviewing codices… This article wasn’t the best I’ve read here, but I’m not sure why everyone is being so harsh over it.

Frontline seems to have been hollowed out by GWorms eating them from the inside and turned into a sort of horrible undead sock puppet to sprout GW marketing for as long as it has credibility while the rot hasn't gotten too obvious.

I've noticed that too. It's like they've gotten too invested since they are collaborating with GW. I think their objectivity has taken a bit of a nosedive.

Because not everyone has every single rule and people want tactical analysis to understand the possibilities. the crimson fiat trait that gives D3 extra attacks if 10 models are in range, that's apparently utter shit,s ure, there are better things overall out there but if you are facinga horde army or an army with large units of say genestealers or space marines at >10 models then this trait could actually be incredibly useful if your warlord is tricked out to mince infantry. Dismissing it outright as completely garbage with nothing further is a prime example of not contextualising an argument. This is what is pissing people off. Then the way he handles comments in response.

he's being called stelek ffs. Not the stelek of early 5th ed that was innovative and pushed forth competitive 40k gaming regardless of his insane arrogance but the stelek of 'this is good, discuss, I'll let YOU write my article for me and rant about no one being as good as me because I know everything and you lot can figure out the rest' stelek.

I never actually thought I'd see the day where someone actually compared 3++ with ytth or would state 1d4chan is better then 3++.

Now, sure, Desc440's articles have been dominating because he is actively writing, and most of us aren't right now, so they are more the face of the blog at the moment, but being compared to places with general ill reputations or poor standards and by multiple people at that does sort of scream, take an extra little bit of time and just write a bit extra. It's not a novel if you sub title different sections and allow people to breath, people will come back and read articles in sections if they are long but tactically and strategically insightful.

If you're taking the CF trait you're then taking the CF chapter tactics, so you're now taking a significantly subpar CT for a situational warlord trait. Sure it's helpful, but even by itself an extra D3 attacks against what is likely a horde unit (so unlikely to be really dented by an extra D3 attacks) is not great any way that you shake a stick at it.

The comparisons to Stelek and YTTH are poor. Desc handled himself well and updated the article following the constructive feedback that was provided by some. 3++ has been compared to many other denizens hundreds of times before and will continue to be done so – it's part of being on the Internet.

I assume you mean poring over instead of purring over. He is AbusePuppy after all, not AbuseKitten.

There is not much analysis needed here – 3++ certainly attempts to cater to as many gamers as possible but there is sometimes just a point that we do not feel the need to say 2 > 1 *gives pictorial analysis*. Desc took on the feedback and updated the post but when it boils down to it, most of the traits are being outshone by the top few, same with Chapter Tactics.

When the units start getting a look in and there's more to discuss, you will likely see more meat. As was said above, different authors may have handled this differently such as combining all of them into one but there is no right or wrong way to go about it (other than sticking your fingers in your ears and going LALALALALALA; now that sounds familiar).

Yes, the meat of the analysis will be when we start talking about the units themselves. There's only so much one can say about a Trait that gives you +1 Strength compared to the myriad ways you can configure a Devastator Squad.

There is a vast, vast difference in how Desc handled the feedback and critique he got compared to how YTTH has handled it in the past.

There is also a significant difference between the way Desc’s critics have handled responses to his feedback over there critiques, compared to the way the commentariat at YTTH behaves. I’ll admit, my argument with Prometheus from a month or so back was one of the most ill-behaved comment threads I’ve ever seen on 3++, with this comment thread being a close second… and it looks like a Victorian supper club debate compared to the YTTH crowd on their best day.

I could see the Crimson Fists trait having some value if you’re up against a horde army, perhaps not optimal but might be worth considering if you’re light on ways to mulch hordes. The reroll charges would be more useful if the warlord could apply it to another unit as well, something like the warlord and one unit within 6″.

If the charge reroll applied to more than just the Warlord, it would absolutely be worthwhile then. This is a recuring problem with GW's work – often falls juuust a bit short.

As far as the CF Trait goes, I think I would still much rather go with Storm of Fire to so that my bolters negate Ork t-shirt armour than get another D3 attacks in CC, which I probably want to avoid in the first place.

"If the charge reroll applied to more than just the Warlord, it would absolutely be worthwhile then. This is a recuring problem with GW's work – often falls juuust a bit short. "
The alternative way of looking at things is that Storm of Fire and Adept of the Codex are too good. If you dropped those down in effectiveness slightly, then thing's be a lot more even. GW have been toning down the WL traits, but these still stick out as better than the others, which are in turn better than the stock traits (well, some of them. Some are literally better versions, but others are still worse).

Also just boils down to 'personal power' vs 'multiplicative power'. When you're comparing a buff for an individual, vs a buff for most of your army? That individual and/or buff is going to have to be pretty crazy, or your army and/or buff pretty terrible if the, say, +1-3 A on a single model is going to match up to something like mini-rending on (potentially) half your army.

Yeah, the problem is that GW far too often forgets that aura buffs (and other such abilities) can apply to more than one unit, or when used selectively can have an extremely powerful effect on certain specific units. This was essentially the big issue with 7E and many of its buff abilities- Invisibility isn't an issue when you cast it on a Tactical Squad, but used on a Wraithknight it's pretty devastating. I really hope they avoid going down that path again, but abilities like Storm of Fire are a bad sign.

The one saving grace is that you can't get full benefits out of Rowboat while also getting access to Storm of Fire; SM bubble armies are already pretty insanely good.

See above in response to Taak. If you're taking the CF trait then you're also taking the CF chapter tactic, so you've doubled down on the less than stellar options but as you've stated and is agreed upon below, the little things like this can make something decent and worthwhile or just junk.

I agree that most of the warlord traits are sub par but I don’t think that storm of fire is the best. It is also situational. There are quite a few situations where the benefit is not that great. For instance if your warlord is attacking with Terminators, Assault Centurions, Vanguard Vets or Devastator Squads then getting an additional -1 to AP doesn’t add much more. It would certainly be good when paired with things like Tactical Squads but I don’t think it is an auto-take.

Adept of the Codex however is useful in every single army of whatever build. It means that you can forgo all sorts of Troop and HQ taxes and give you much more flexibility in the way you build your list.

Silent Stalker is amazing when paired with Shrike. He can deep strike down with infiltrating Assault Centurions, Vangaurd Vets and Terminators, multi-charge a whole load of units and stop them from overwatching. It is not to be used on his own but as part of a multi unit Alpha strike. It is something to build your list around.

Angel of Death is also something that you can build your list around. There are several ways to reduce leadership such as allying in a Dark Angel Inquisitor Chaplin. These debuffs will stack as they come from different sources. Even Space Marines will start to feel the pinch of every casualty when they have 2 or 3 leadership debuffs on them. You can also use psychic scourge from a librarian to drop mortal wounds on an otherwise hidden character to knock out a critical commissar or critical support character.

I think there is actually a lot of hidden depths to these Warlord Traits and whilst Storm of Fire and Adept of the Codex are undoubtedly the best the others should not be rejected out of hand.

Storm of Fire is situational, true – just a lot less than most others. Adept of the Codex is too, though. Its going to be not super good if you army only has 4 or so Command Points, like say an army made from a single Outrider detachment.

I think you may be forgetting that units can Overwatch an infinite number of times, as long as they don't have an enemy unit within 1 inch of them. Ergo, multi-charging "a whole load of units" to shut down a large segment of the enemy's Overwatch is only going to happen if your opponent did an awful job of positioning his units.

Angel of Death is a lot better. It really comes down to what army your opponent is playing.

"Silent Stalker is amazing when paired with Shrike. He can deep strike down with infiltrating Assault Centurions, Vangaurd Vets and Terminators, multi-charge a whole load of units and stop them from overwatching. It is not to be used on his own but as part of a multi unit Alpha strike. It is something to build your list around."
It's actually the complete opposite, and absolute garbage for Shrike, and not much better for the general idea you portray there.

What do you take shrike for? Rerolls on the charge from DS. Which is pretty good. But you can (basically) never get that benefit if you use Silent Stalker. Why? You set up >9". Your reroll bubble is 6". If you actually made the charge (which is the only way to actually deny overwatch for your friends – succeed the charge and block them from subsequent overwatch rounds. Otherwise, sure they can't overwatch the WL. But they can overwatch everyone else) you're not giving the other squads the reroll bubble. If they charge first to take advantage of the reroll bubble, then Shrike can't block overwatch, since they're charging first.

Extending it out to 'general charges', it's only slightly better in a lot of cases. You can only block the overwatch to others if you succeed your charge and end up within 1" at the end of it – so, you're basically always looking at 1, 2 at most. Great in some cases, if you want to assault something like (extreme example) a hemlock, or other single unit with really nasty overwatch – but not hugely helpful for a big multi assault.

"Storm of Fire vs Adept of the Codex"
Eh, I'll agree that which one's better will vary from army to army. But they're both always useful, just not to the same degree. A razorback spam battalion, say, benefits very heavily from the extra AP on its high volume of fire, low AP weapons with rerolls. While it doesn't get as much from bonus CP (though I think it'd get more out of them now with Stratagems, I don't think there's really many applicable ones for that list). It doesn't need that 'flexibility', though it may not be unwelcome, nor would the extra CP be bad.

Conversely, to take your example – all of those units gain from an extra AP, just less than low AP, and have poor volume of fire to trigger. Except stormbolters 😛 . And yes, would gain more from extra CP.

"Angel of Death"
Lots of hoops to jump through, for usually not much gain. When you're having to stack multiple 6" bubbles+other effects for your strategy to happen? Not good.
Against more elite/MSU, they're probably almost dead before failure starts being likely, even if they're under the effect of multiple debuffs. And even if this did cause failure, that's 1 extra dead. Very niche, which is terrible in a TAC (though potentially hilarious if you stacked up to -5 or something ridiculous on a paladin squad and caused half of them to flee).
Against hordes, they're usually going to have morale immunity. Kill the fearless providers (which is…sometimes feasible, but usually only if they're guard and don't have back up commissars. Nids? If you've killed the synapse, you've probably taken out chunks anyway. Orks? You've definitely killed most of them at that point)? Congrats, you killed 1-2 extra conscripts from this one. Woot.

It depends a lot on the Relic, but I mostly agree. The simple relics that are basically just existing gear options with improved stats don’t bother me that much, maybe it’s all those years of playing D&D, but I don’t have any trouble with a “Boltgun +1.” It is those relics that add a great deal of complex “new” rules to a character or that are highly situational that I really dislike, because I have trouble remembering what they do and when they trigger during a game.

I kinda wish there was a “None of the Above” option for Relics and Warlord Traits. Something that was both useful and didn’t require any effort on my part to use… maybe just changing a stat on my roster sheet.

For the most part, to me it feels like GW is just focusing on the wrong level of granularity. They should be concentrating on giving us greater tactical depth for your army as a whole instead of making you Character super wonderfully special…

Ever since 4th or 5th Edition, it feels to me that GW just cannot come to an internal agreement on what the “scale” of the game is meant to be. No, I don’t mean the size of the models. I mean they don’t seem to really know how big the armies playing the game are meant to be.

Rogue Trader was a bit uncertain if it was going to be a squad-level skirmish or a platoon-level skirmish, but that’s forgiven as it was the early days. By the time Second Edition was developed and established, GW had seemed to be pretty clear: Warhammer 40,000 was for platoon level wargaming, but scaled reasonably well up to company size and was workable in smaller games; But it was Necromunda/Gorkamorka that handled the squad level gaming best and it was Epic 40,000 that handled the company and larger games best. With the streamlined Third Edition (and early supplements from Forge World), WH40k got a good deal better at handling company level gaming, with the sweet spot being somewhere around a demi company.

Problem is that WH40k’s model makers and supplement designers keep trying to encourage bigger and bigger game scale (“You get a Superheavy! You get a Superheavy! Everyone gets a Superheavy!”)… But at the same time, core rulebooks and codices keep trying to push squad-level or even individual-model level details (split fire, mixed unit types, big damn heroes, etc.) All of which is compounded by the community demanding a tight, tournament-ready ruleset with clear terrain specs and a 6′ x 4′ table size.

I swear, it’s all so internally contradictory and self-defeating that it must be the work of the Adeptus Terra.

It would seriously help if they could decide on that yes. And finally use some of the rules of their bigger scale games to just make handling squads faster, without having to count and roll a mountain of dice each time a unit shoots just to take out 1 or 2 models after all is said and done.

I’ve often wondered if the rules for Epic 40,000 could just be used moreorless “as is” with WH40k scale figures. Obviously you’d need to adjust ranges and the like.

That is something I've often pondered too. Just a bit of tweaking and it'd probably be perfectly suitable.

If nothing else, replacing the shooting of every boltgun, special weapon, and heavy weapon in a squad from a fistful of separate rolls to one or two dice would be a big improvement. Just spitballing here, but why not just make _one_ to hit roll for all eight boltguns in a ten-marine squad and _one_ to wound roll? Have some modifiers to add a bonus or malus as the unit changes in size…

I’ve been pondering over the idea of an alternating activation system for awhile, and when Codex: SM came out, I was annoyed how CP are more or less a MOBA manabar. CP should represent the ability for a force to fight as a coherent whole, and not to go “I hid a Hellfire round in hammerspace” or so.

So I started mucking around with an alternating activation system where each player gets CP on a per-turn basis, but said CP are used for mucking with activation sequences more than anything else. The game uses a “2 actions” structure (think XCOM), where Reactions eat into those Actions. CP can ge used for consecutive actions, reserves, splitting a unit’s turn into two “one action” activations, and other options which show an army working as a coordinated whole.

Sounds interesting. I was a bit disappointed that 8th didn't go with alternating activation. All the other changes are nice (well, most of them) but adding alternating activation would have been the best (imo).

This seems like such an obvious method to enrich the game, as well as mitigate the alpha strike arms race that I've always wondered why GW doesn't make this change. I don't have a lot (any) non-WH40k experience but figure it must have been tried a million times. Does it just shift problems around or is it intrinsically better than you move/fire everything then I do?

MagicJuggler brings up a great way to enrich the game through controlling tempo and forcing the players to make important tactical decisions.

WMH has a lot of out of activation abilities – some better than others, but they are all quite useful or require thought on how to counter. I think LotR has a pretty good system in that regard as well but I'm not 100% sure onhow that works, just from what I've read.

MJ's ideas make complete sense though IMO – there are some OOA options through stratagems (like Truesilver Armor) but they do not have a huge impact.

I think it's:
A: too big a change. While 8th is one of the biggest edition changes, that would probably be the biggest ever. After everyone's concern over 'AoSing' 40k, removing one of the core fundamentals of the game is a very risky move.
B: As Ish points out below, the scale of 40k is going to cause issues with that. To say nothing of potential balance issues (armies with more units are currently penalised for going 2nd – alternating activation would instead likely penalise them in other ways), it's also a matter of complexity. GW have been trying to simplify the game – that's not really a simplification. Having to keep track of what units have gone/not gone on both sides…combat can get messy enough. Entire army?

That's just it, though – they've already broken new ground by having alternating activations in combat. So why not just push a bit more and apply it to shooting as well?

I honestly would have rather seen alternating shooting than alternating combat, if I had had a choice…

I am kind of glad the kept the venerable IGO UGO system. I’ve always found that alternating activation breaks down once games get much larger than the platoon level. Your mileage may vary, as they say, but I don’t think WH40k at its current scale would benefit from alternating activation.

… And then somehow "un-breaks" when you push the scale even larger? Epic Armageddon uses alternating activations, and it works really well.

The key to alternating activations seems to be limiting the number of activations per side to a range of about 6-10 per turn. Organising 40k armies into "activation blocks" that fell into that range wouldn't be the hardest thing in the world.

Whether that would be a benefit to the game is a whole other question. It would be a completely different game at that point, and it's not like GW is ever going to do it, so it's largely irrelevant to a discussion about 40k. It could be a fun, niche game to try out, though.

Considering the trouble with how good first turn is (again. Seriously after all this time) they really should have done it. The moment I saw they didn't, was pretty much when I went from hopeful for this edition to "oh dear, I hope they won't break it so much I will regret not selling my armies while they are worth something".

Epic’s scale is larger, but the number of “game pieces” a player controls tends to be smaller. A battle company in 40k will consist of ten units of ten individual models, plus commander models and transports… that’s 100+ “Pieces” to keep track of each turn. That same battle company in Epic will consist of ten “pieces” plus a commander and transports.

Twenty "pieces" (units of 10 come in two stands of 5) but okay. Not to be too facetious, but you know you don't run the same size armies in 40k and Epic, right? If your army in 40k is a battle company, then your army in Epic would be 8-10 battle companies for an equivalent "size" of game. It's not at all rare to have 100+ "pieces" on each side in a game of Epic.

I actually do think silent stalker is amazing in conjunction with Raven guard.

Ignoring overwatch, give you a couple options. For once it let’s glass hammers charge in without losing wounds. This is really important with something like vanguard vets with jump packs and thunder hammers. Not losing guys on the way in really can swing a combat. Especially if you are going to use 3cps to double attack them. SftS a van guard vet squad and shrike can easily remove any lore of war in the game off the table turn one.

It also let’s you tank units off in the corner.

Charging something like d scythe wraith guard or Tau can be absolutely game changing.

Don’t get me wrong. I like storm of fire, but if you have a single target that needs to be dead? It’s hard to beat silent stalker

It's not as effective as you seem to think – Silent Stalker only denies overwatch against your WL. Thus it will only prevent overwatch on friends if your WL charged first (i.e. don't do this with Shrike and DS, since that removes the entire point of taking Shrike), made his charge move, and being within 1" actually prevents them overwatching (i.e. they aren't a SH).

In other words, you're paying to deny overwatch from 1 unit with your WL trait. That advantage is very niche – d-scythes? Yeah, great. Pretty much everything else? A lot more meh. If losing a VV is likely and really bad, just send in the WL first anyway – slightly more risky without this trait. But, you've swapped the wound to a multi-wound model who loses no combat ability, from a dead model, without needing the WL trait, and it has exactly the same ability to deny overwatch. Except if you take, say, Imperium's Sword, you get reroll charges and +1 A instead, which is arguably a _more_ reliable way of blocking overwatch on friendlies, if more self sacrificing, unless running Shrike/RG jump pack relic.

(That said, I don't think it's a bad trait for a RG WL looking for charges. I just don't think that's really a great use of your WL/trait).

This man gets it. It's all a question of opportunity cost. Sure, denying overwatch is great, no question; however, is it better than another trait you could be picking? Much less certain.

" Maynard · 1 day ago
You shouldn't have to reference fucking 1d4chan to understand a 3++ article. This is just lazy writing."

" Desc440 · 1 day ago
You're free to take your valuable time elsewhere, you know. No one's forcing you to read this at gunpoint, as best as I can figure."

Dude, don't be a fuck wit.

Stop pretending you're Stelek.

You're an author on 3++ just like I am. You can write how you want and people are going to form an opinion as they will with anything and that you need to be mature enough to accept and take on board, but the past few articles you've stated stuff without explaining things and this is where the dislike is coming from.

The strength of 3++ is that things are contextualised because not everyone owns every rule set out there and people want to read things online that allow them to know what other armies have going for them so as they can be prepared in their games.

We're also not like BoLS where you get a word cap forced on you, but oh no if you can do a video that's an hour long that's totally alright but too many words and people can't read those articles oh no. No restrictions there, so no real excuse to be lazy and also act like a douchebag in comments at the people reading your articles.

If you want to get cut by people stating things as they are, maybe, just maybe, you should swallow a cup of concrete and harden the heck up and actually take some time to write things that are contextualised.

E.g. Your article on stratagems – you named them and then stated an opinion WITHOUT EXPLAINING WHAT THEY DID. No one wants to read that shit. Go post on a specific sub forum where everyone has that information already.

Don't get butt hurt when other people tell you your writing is a waste of time and shit.

Because at least half of it right now is.

You also make reference to 'mexican marines', people skim read articles a lot, I had to scroll through your whole thing and not find any statement of mexican marines to know what the fuck you were going on about. trawling through comments someone eventually stated you meant crimson fists and then (vote for) Pedro was mentioned, but then it digressed into a rant at gw being lazy. GW have pinched stuff from every conceivable source ever since they started making rules, that ain't new, no need to rant on that.

I digress.

Stop acting like a child when people respond with constructive feedback – this feedback can be positive or negative it can be politely stated like Matt Shadowlord did or it can be blunt like others put it. they are right though, we shouldn't be forced to reference material we may not have or to go look at 1d4chan or other sources, if we're doing that why the fuck are we even bothering to come here?

And before you have a go at me for not writing anything this edition yet it's simple: I have a few ideas brewing but they aren't refined enough to meet the standards I see 3++ posting and which we've always posted or tried to post at. It's been 5 long years since 5th and my last competitive articles on 40k, but if people have constructive criticism, you take it on the chin and don't be a douchebag about it. this is called being a mature author. Someone mentioned we don't get paid to write, so what, not an excuse to be lazy yourself and then get all angry when people point out the weaknesses of your writing. learn, become better at it, it takes time, but it is not impossible, certainly with what people are expressing here for you.

Step up mate. Stop being a douche. And take some time to write an extra sentence or two for your points. And please, oh please, don't reference things with pet terms that are going to confuse people without writing their actual name first, e.g. Roboute Guilliman aka Rowboat Girlyman, or Robbi, or Bobby G, or a combination; The Crimson Fists, aka Mexican marines (I've never heard them called mexican marines before now, the vote for pedro marines were a thing but not mexican marines). It'll take you 5 extra seconds and it'll make your writing more understandable. AND ACTUALLY HAVE PEOPLE READ MORE OF YOUR ARTICLES.

" Matt-Shadowlord · 1 day ago
Suggestion; could you say what on earth the traits you're talking about are, for the sake of those who don't have the codex with them (or at all) while reading the opinions?

Much obliged 😎
Matt is one of the more long term prolific writers, he made a good point and he made it politely. He even handled your aggressive response with a cool and chilled out response. Much Respect Matt.

Have a grand day,

Auretious Taak.

I'm sorry bud, but when people act like a bunch of petulant, entitled children, they're gonna get what's coming to them. I have no trouble with criticism – I DID go back and add a description of each Trait after Matt suggested it. I will NOT, however, just sit back with an idiotic smile on my face and tolerate the abuse of a bunch of dickholes without saying anything. You say I should swallow some cement and harden the fuck up? Maybe you should grow a spine and have enough pride not stand for this crap. We're not getting paid for this. If people aren't clear on something, THAT'S WHAT THE FUCKING COMMENTS ARE THERE FOR! It's not like I've written an article and not bothered to follow up with answering said comments.

Yeah the toughen up line really doesn't fly if the complaint is "This free article, written by some hobby dude about my toy soldiers isn't perfectly convenient for me".
As for the time wasting point… you're reading an article about 40k. I mean, come on.

I'm not standing for this crap, I'm stating it as it is, as I usually do – your writing and how you handle comments is pretty shit house mate.

That the simple solution is to add a summary descriptor or to add a half sentence on why you are dismissing things is being dismissed by you for the most part, screams you do not take criticism well.

Calling people dickholes and petulant entitled children doesn't back up your stance and statements either. Do you want me to hand you a shovel to keep digging the hole?

You're allowed to write bad articles here. I've done a few in the past myself, it happens, but when people are echoing the same themes and you are ignoring them and then insulting them, yeah, you're the actual dickhole and child in this conversation, not them. Take it on board, and in future articles write a little more. You can still be succinct but with the sheer size and scope of the game, people don't read every codex inside out, a codex review for 40k tends to look at things indepth, that's why you split chapter traits off to a separate article instead of say combining it with stratagems. You could have, for example, in the above article made two sub headings for the generic and the chapter specific traits of 1) The Good, 2) The Bad, and under the sub title The Good wrote something like 'these traits are significantly better then the ones under 'The bad' below because they are less situational and are more likely to have an effect in every game regardless of the opponent and don't require specific build arounds to make work well.

It's simple, took me 30 seconds to type that and suddenly people aren't going to complain as much because you've given more solid reasoning for why you think what you think. It's clear you don't think much of the Salamanders Trait for example, but +1 strength combined with a relic blade gets you to strength 7 and so youa re able to wound most vehicles/monstrous creatures on a 4+ rather then a 5+, combined with the re-roll to hit and wound for the chapter tactic and it becomes quite a useful warlord trait. Considering it can be combined with The Burning Blade chapter relic to still get you to strength 7 but with a whopping -5 to armour saves, and whilst it may not be destroying such large targets in a single round, it significantly increases their likelihood of putting out the hurt and with say the relic blade of potentially killing a vehicle in a single round of combat. A mobile captain chasing down rifledreads for example would benefit highly from this trait. It may be situational but combined with other aspects of the chapter it is not bad as you have suggested. Because all you did was suggest there not say anything concrete.

You have to realise that not everyone is a tactical genius, not everyone is an adult or a teenager there are kids that play and read blogs these days and you may bump into a few at a gw store playing quite well as a result (or badly as a result mind, oh some forums lol), moreover not everyone is massively intelligent either and some people miss the obvious regardless of how intelligent they are, and this is where short descriptors and expanded reasonings help significantly.

Another point to back this up is that there are few of us in this hobby that can trulys ay people know us the world over, or our aliases online for 40k or other gaming. Some people formulate opinions on people and their writing off of a single reading of an article and no other articles. Then they look at the author and never read your stuff again. It's not always idiots who do it but sometimes you get quite strong players who do it because there is only so much time in the day and the internet is a huge place. No one is asking you to massively change things up, it's small simple things that may take a bit extra to write but which will make the articles smoother and cleaner for everyone and also give people a better opinion of your opinions whether they agree or disagree with them because at least there's something there to explain why. It makes a difference.

P.S. I write novels because I'm biologically wired that way – it's exceedingly hard for me to be short and succinct. Advice given to me when i first started writing articles for competitive 40k gaming here on 3++ (I wrote on YTTH first when it was still relatively good and progressive and Kirby invited me here and well, best move ever lol) was to use subtitles to break up long paragrapghs more often and to contextualise and focus arguments/explanations to allow everyone to know exactly what is being said and why. People want to know what YOUR reasoning is so as they can formulate an opinion on how valid it is for their gaming whatever the level of ability they have. What may seem obvious to you may not be to them. And you may well miss things, but that is okay. because you gave reasoning even if it's a general 'these traits below aren't the greatest because they are situational and not reliably useful every single game'.

Buddy, I seriously have no issue with criticism; I went back and did as Matt suggested pretty much as soon as I saw his comment. The level of vitriol from some of the other commenters was unwarranted, however and I won't stand for that. I'm not a goddamn doormat.

As for your Salamanders Trait example, I direct you to Kirby's comment below.

Taak, please be mindful of the way you are responding as well – Desc owned up to needing to add more to the article and he did. He unfortunately got riled up by the way comments were stated and he owned up to that as well. Desc has a history of responding well to comments and as noted above in where questions were asked of the actual logical reasoning, explained it. We do not need to be continuing to cast stones.

We are not perfect – we have our off moments. You specifically referenced Matt as someone who provided constructive feedback and what happened? Desc updated the article. Let's be more like Matt.

"Let's be more like Matt." Tshirts and novelty coasters will be available in the foyer. 🙂

But genuinely, thanks for updating the article with details Desc so quickly. The internet can be a tough crowd, don't take comments too seriously.

Can I get an AMEN! *Claps* couldn't have said that better. I mean you went IN probably too deep but I assume you know him better than the rest of us and if it's any indication I see some level of progress in his most recent article on Psychic powers. Which I hope is because he digivolved into something greater.

Thank you for making that possible.

Can everyone just take a moment to chill? Okay, okay, we get it. This wasn’t the best article to ever grace 3++… Let’s move on.

A reminder to all, we are not perfect. Desc took on your feedback and updated the post to be a bit more explicit about what things do so you do not need to grab your codex / reference sheets. 3++ does strive to give you in-depth tactical analysis but sometimes writing a paragraph on why a +1 strength trait is not as good as something like gives you an effective 33% more CP can be very frustrating and not need that much level of insight. We certainly do not expect an expert level of analysis on all of articles but there is also a little bit of assumed knowledge – our Back to Basics or How To series are more geared towards that lower level of knowledge and perhaps we need to get the glossary up and running again.

That being said, we really appreciate constructive criticism and questions – we are happy to answer questions, as simple as they may be, and happy to be wrong if you help make us better hobbyists / gamers.

But let's just make sure we keep it constructive please – for all parties (myself included).

"but there is also a little bit of assumed knowledge"
My issue with the article isn't that it assumes people can work out why a bad trait is bad. That level of assumed knowledge is fine – but the article must do something. It can either explain the basics, or it can expand on the basics. However, it doesn't really do anything with either. It just says 'this is good, this isn't' with no explanation on why (so you could build from that yourself and then apply that knowledge), or, for example, ways to utilise a good trait, or which of the good traits are better in what situations.

Basically, it came off a bit 'you can figure out why this is good and this bad yourself', and offered no supplementary information or discussion (in the article – there has been some going on in the comments. But using an article as essentially a chat piece? Eh). Which isn't necessarily wrong for most of the readership – but if we can figure that out ourselves, what point does the article serve?

The problem I ran into with this one is that there really isn't too much to talk about, because the difference in quality between say Storm of Fire and Anvil of Strength is so stark and how you build around the good Traits so obvious that I wasn't left with much to say (or so I thought, in any case). I've gone back and added some further thoughts based on Toast's suggestion – hopefully this will make the article a more satisfying read.


Yep, much meatier.

Point of discussion:
"comes up against an army highly susceptible to Morale damage – perhaps you should consider going with Angel of Death"
What army is susceptible to morale damage that'd care about losing one more (that isn't also completely terrible)? About all I can really think of is crons to dodge the reanimation.

That is a good question. I suspect that running upon such an army is going to be pretty rare. Rather, it'll be more a case of you being able to add an extra layer of hurt on an already not-so-optimised list.

Is there a way to get an "updated' notification when articles get revised? I would've totally missed the improved version had someone not mentioned that all hell broke loose in the most recent psychics article.

Not for articles, you can set notifications to comments though if you setup an intensedebate account, or I think as well if you put your email down.

You pick the trait right before the battle, right? As in, not locked in at list-build? Would be interesting to see an analysis of what circumstances justify picking each one – which would also help in illustrating why some are generally better than others, and encourage people to think for themselves rather than just using what they've been told is good. (Same goes for most options – powers, stratagems, units…)

F.ex when *not* to.pick storm of fire: any time you have a melee-focused warlord, right? It's a 6" bubble and shooting units that can use this efficiently probably don't want to be that close to a melee warlord for very long, I think?

In general, it's best to build your list already with a Trait in mind; that way, you get to maximise it's effect(s) on your army. There will be time where you may not end up using the Trait you thought you would be using, but these situations should be in the minority.

That said, I'll try to go back and add a para on the topic when I have a chance. Cheers!

I think an article on how everything is selected would be nice. Traits, Abilities, etc etc something to detail the tactical flexibility of the new rules and what we should keep in mind as we begin a new game.

I personally enjoyed the CP article from some weeks ago.

I just realised something… BT chapter tactics should already be giving your warlord rerolls to charge distances. Congratulations GW, you just gave BT a warlord trait that gives him something he already has.

Correct me if I’m wrong (I don’t have the book at hand) but doesn’t the Black Templar Warlord Trait grant the Warlord the ability to do 6″ Heroic Intervention? That’s got bugger all to do with re-rolling Charges.