Good day, fellow wolves in sheep’s clothing! Today I’m going to address a few of the points that were brought up by commentators on my piece about the suckitude of Tactical Squads. I don’t address every single thing that was discussed up but I tried to cover what I felt needed more indepth analysis. I may revisit this topic again sometime in the future, though. Without further adieus:
Many peeps have brought up the fact that Marines have awesome buff auras available to them and that leaving them out of the equation in my article was distorting reality. Normally that would be a valid point, but it leaves out the fact that I did not take into account any sort of buff for the Guardsmen (such as FRFSF, Yarrick’s aura, Cadian doctrine, etc) either. In any case, I went back and did the math, and I have some bad news for you if you thought Captains/Lieutenants were going to save the day…
Good day, fellow apex predators! Today I do a bit of math-hammering to figure out why it is that my Tactical Squads perform so poorly on the tabletop. While I am using Tactical Marines in my calculations, I believe much of what I’m about to write could hold true for a lot of elite infantry units.
If you’ve read my last post, you will already know I’m in a bit of a sour mood lately as far as 40k is concerned. Aside from the issues I brought up in that maudlin essay, one thing that has bugged me a lot is how badly the infantry in my army (Space Marines, in case you weren’t tracking) has been performing – and Tactical Squads chief amongst those.
Now, don’t get me wrong: not ALL Marine infantry sucks. Scouts, for example, are a great unit – though even then, the reason they are good has a lot more to do with the impact they have over your overall survivability (by denying a huge amount of real estate for enemy Deep Strikers) than with any other intrinsic qualities the unit possesses.
The units and gear affected by Chapter Approved changes are spread across various books, so I have attempted to compile them into one easy to read table that shows the before and after impact of the new changes.
There are two pieces of good news for Guard players. The first is that you are now off the hook; enough units have been hit with tweaks and points increases that your wins are going to be harder to come by, and you are going to have to work harder to claim each victory. This isn’t sarcasm either; personally I find it liberating when army building is more challenging and opponents less likely to blame your codex for their losses.
First, the good news. GW are paying more attention to 40K game results, balance and feedback than ever before, and the new Astra Militarum FAQ 1.0 is part of the proof of that. They have fixed brand new issues like the Ogryn bodyguards palming wounds off onto one another in an infinite circle, dubbed the “Ogryn Hyperloop”.
They have also made some sensible changes like ‘Take Cover! Change the first sentence of this stratagem to read: ‘Use this Stratagem in your opponent’s Shooting phase when your opponent selects one of your Astra Militarum Infantry units as a target.’ – so it will no longer be useable by any other armies that happen to ally in some Guard -and remember that included everything from Ultramarines to GSC Tyrannids. It’s (IMHO) a shame it was simultaneously changed to infantry only, because it was briefly available to Rough Riders and camouflaged tanks, but on the whole it’s a good change.
Now the bad news: They have responded to the widely held opinion that Conscripts + Commissars were too powerful for their points cost by almost invalidating them, and in a way that is so heavy-handed I personally think it will require its own errata -and soon.
This is a quick-fire review of the 25 Stratagems that the Imperial Guard / Astra Militarum gained with their new 8th Edition Codex. It might also be the first chance some players have to see them, so take a look and find out what cunning trickery, explosive bombardments and off-table firepower those wily guardsmen have ready to activate at the punch of a button.
I’m going to grade them quickly from 1 to 5 stars based on a simple scale: to be 5 stars, it has to be as good as the amazing Reroll a Dice per phase that all armies and races have access to. That one is often under-rated, and frequently squandered, but used right it is $Money$.
Updated with clearer images and text. There is a new video out from WinterSEO where he takes a run through the new Guard codex. There are some limits to what he is allowed to display in advance of the book being released, but even so there is a lot of detail in this video, which I recommend to anyone who’s looking forward to the new book.
I have grabbed some of the vital info that people are most interested in – in particular, the points (as much as can actually be seen), and the new warlord traits.
Will post the warhammer tv stuff in a few hours but for now here are the copy pastes of the last two previews before it goes up for preorder.
Conscripts are still a strong screen choice but their versatility without 100% orders and maxing out at 30 per squad will limit them somewhat.
Astra Militarum previews are starting with some Regimental rules and thankfully the handful of rules leaks we were sitting on have been revealed as correct (internal yay to self for sitting on them) re Catachans and Russes. Moving past me patting myself on the back (I may be operating on about three hours sleep these past 48 hours…) and there are some good signs for the vehicles of the Astra Militarum so far…
In response to some of the recent debates on this site, Kirby asked me to write an article about the usefulness of, and the reasons to take, Conscripts in 8th edition. I originally declined the invitation, but decided to write it in a long form of response to questions Kadeton posed in one of the discussions.
I took an army with 83 conscripts and about 50 other infantry to the Southern Hemisphere Open tournament this last weekend, a massive and highly professional event held in WA. The field was extremely varied as opponents included Forgeworld’s most hardcore deamons (see image above), massive ork hordes, the Tau Supremacy suit with ablative drones and a Dark Angel list centred around the impressively powerful Relic Falcion Tank-Destroyer boosted with the traditional DA -1 to hit, reroll all shots and 4++.
I managed to win all 6 games in a row, some were touch-and-go till the last moment, and a lot of that comes down to simply volume of boots on the ground and the usefulness of large volumes of infantry.
Gamesworkshop have announced that the next codex release will be the much anticipated Astra Militarum book for 8th edition. This will be available for pre-order next weekend, meaning that the actual release date should be Oct 7th.
Guard players should be aware that the bounty that this book will bring them does come at a price; at a minimum the currently popular massed conscript hordes will definitely be nerfed, but that’s very likely to be a good thing for the game in general.
The book will include 8 Regiments, each with its own doctrine, order, stratagem, relic, and warlord trait.