40Bolter WarActionHammer 2 - The Hereticking

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40Bolter WarActionHammer 2 - The Hereticking

Post by Primarch » Wed May 08, 2019 9:16 am

I have some problems.

1. Unless you are a member of a jungle dwelling tribe, thus far untouched by civilization, you are probably well aware of my feelings regarding the current edition of 40K.
2. I have recently been making an effort to get back into 40K lore, or more accurately 30K. Building and painting a sizeable Horus Heresy collection is on my bucket list, but currently nobody locally seems super eager to play HH based games in preference to current 40K.
3. And even if they did, the current HH rules are set firmly in 7th Ed. 40K, a raging dumpster fire of an edition that only marginally improved on the cancerous bile that was 6th.
4. I feel nostalgic for 5th Ed, but prefer random/alternating activation to IGoUGo.
5. I am obviously borderline insane at best.
6. I have tried BA with a dash of 40K and while it worked, it didn't really scratch the itch and I'll probably just stick with vanilla BA to be honest.

As the title of the thread might imply, I'm looking for solutions to all my problems (though number 5 might not be solvable) through a mash-up of rulesets.

5th Ed. was my favourite edition of 40K. Your opinions may be different, but for me it had the right amount of depth to the rules without getting bogged down in random rolls or taking hours and hours to play.
Bolt Action's random/alternating activation sequence keeps players involved throughout the game and puts more onus on good decision-making and prioritizing actions.
8th Ed. introduced a lot of things to 40K and some of them are a good idea. For example, Ap being a modifier rather than an all or nothing effect is one of the things I like about the game.

Previously I have tried simply putting random/alternating activation into 5th Ed. and putting 40K elements into BA. (Wow, that was over a year ago, how time flies). At this stage, I'm probably going to try going back to 5th and working on a more in-depth activation system as well as addressing issues it had with crazy wound allocations and so forth.

I am sure most people are happy with 8th and don't see a need to fix it. Some of you may prefer IGoUGo, or may not feel the need to change things up. If that's you, good. Enjoy the games you want to, have fun playing them and ignore my incessant prattling. This thread is mainly for me to state my intent, to offer others the chance to contribute should they wish to and for me to make notes as I go along. Join in if you want, it's your call. I won't be inflicting my hybridized mix-up of a game on anyone who doesn't want to try it, but my door is always open so to speak.
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Re: 40Bolter WarActionHammer 2 - The Hereticking

Post by me_in_japan » Wed May 08, 2019 1:39 pm

This sounds interesting. I know I'm not really up there all that often to help playtest and stuff, but I'll happily aid and abet when possible here, if y'like. fwiw, I quite liked 5th ed, too, although tbh 8th has its charms, too.
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Re: 40Bolter WarActionHammer 2 - The Hereticking

Post by job » Thu May 09, 2019 3:10 am

I think we spoke about this over beers a bit. Personally, 5th Ed is up there with 3rd in my mind. I’d be up to giving it a whirl again. As for the alternating actions, I’m up for it. Actually, 8th Ed May be the best edition for it, with the powerful shooting units and deep striking armies which can make if very tough for a player on the receiving end. I’d be certainly up to trying a variation of 40k as long as it wasn’t too intensive on adapting the game. Anything that requires rewriting rules or repointing units would seem a bridge too far for me.
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Re: 40Bolter WarActionHammer 2 - The Hereticking

Post by Primarch » Thu May 09, 2019 10:47 am

Today I have mainly been pondering vehicles and how they compare to monstrous creatures.
Looking over the rules from various editions, there are a few options.

5th Ed.
Monstrous creatures were largely immune to instant death, could always move and fire all weapons and got armour saves. Only killing them stopped them.
Vehicles had no hull points and any hits rolled on a damage chart. Glancing hits could immobilize or damage the tank's guns, stun it, but you'd need lots of hits to kill it. Penetrating hits had a fair chance to blow up the vehicle. Shaken and stunned vehicles couldn't fire at all. Most vehicles could only fire 1 gun if they moved.

6th Ed.
Monstrous creatures didn't change.
Vehicles got hull points, so several glancing hits could reliably kill them. Penetrating hits still had a chance to blow them up. As glancing hits no longer applied an effect, vehicles could still fire as normal. Moving vehicles could fire one gun and snap-shot the others. If the vehicle was stunned, it could still snap-shot.

8th Ed.
Monstrous creatures got a load of extra wounds, offset by big guns causing more wounds per hit. As monsters take damage their fighting skill decreases. However it is now much easier to wound them as well.
Vehicles became the same as monstrous creatures. Armour facings make no difference and they can now take wounds from anything, but they get a save against small arms fire. Until they die, they can still fire all weapons, but at a reduced effectiveness.

Pros and Cons
5th Ed.
Pro - Vehicles could soak a lot of low S firepower, but died to big guns.
Con - Once they were hit, vehicles wouldn't do anything. Immobilizing or knocking out the main gun took them out of the game.

6th Ed.
Pro - Vehicles were more reliable when taking low S hits. They would keep moving and firing.
Con - Vehicles couldn't soak a lot of damage and would die faster.

8th Ed.
Pro - Vehicles can always move and fire until they die.
Cons - It is easier to destroy vehicles without using heavy weapons. Even small arms fire can cause damage and any buffs to wound make it even more likely.

The disparity between monsters and vehicles became even worse when GW classified things based on selling the new, hot model. Riptides, (with a crew) were monsters. Soulgrinders (which were vehicle shaped daemons) were vehicles.

Personally, I am against the 8th Ed. everything wounds everything rules as the whole point of armoured vehicles is that they can't be killed by a guy with a rifle. I don't expect any rules to be a faithful recreation of real combat, but they can at least try to give some feeling of it.

Of 5th and 6th, I think 6th makes vehicles somewhat more useful than just something that dashes forwards on turn 1 and then sits in the middle of the table doing nothing until turn 6.
Vehicles can do some things monsters can't, they are marginally better against very low S guns, (AV10 is immune to S3, but T6, it's equivalent is not). They can work as transports and can carry heavier weapons. Monsters can't usually be killed in one hit though, they can move and fire all weapons all the time and melta has no extra effect. Generally speaking they outperform vehicles of the same points/function.

So which version do you like best? Do Monsters need a nerf? Do vehicles need a buff?
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Re: 40Bolter WarActionHammer 2 - The Hereticking

Post by Auxryn » Sat May 11, 2019 9:20 am

I have always enjoyed alternate activation in all the non-40k games I have played. I would be perfectly happy to play 8th ed with alternate activation.

I personally don't see killing vehicles with rifles to be a big issue in actual practice. In 6th ed, Tau Fire Warriors would glance out a Rhino in 36 shots -> 18 hits -> 3 glances.
In 8th ed it's 180 shots -> 90 hits -> 30 wounds ->10 failed saves.

Even a swarm of deep-striking gun drones doesn't put out that kind of firepower. In practice, most players don't bother shooting tanks with bolters. I have a feeling wrecking tanks in assault used to be easier too.

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Re: 40Bolter WarActionHammer 2 - The Hereticking

Post by Primarch » Sat May 11, 2019 10:42 am

That is true. Tau have always had one of the stronger guns on their basic troops in every edition of the game, making them a threat to light vehicles and monsters. For other armies, bolters couldn't scratch a Rhino unless they were behind it and lasguns weren't a concern for even the weakest of vehicles. It was also a lot harder to buff/reroll damage results in previous editions. 8th gives vehicles more hit points, but given enough time, a firewarrior could eventually punch a Land Raider to death. :D Anything short of a powerfist struggled to do that before.

In 8th:
Volume of Fire > Everything

In 5th/6th:
Heavy Weapons > Armoured Vehicles > Low S guns.

A lot of people seem content with the changes 8th brought, it's faster, simpler and therefore has a wide appeal. Unfortunately it just doesn't click with me. There are too many things that break my suspension of disbelief, which is largely an issue for me to deal with.
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Re: 40Bolter WarActionHammer 2 - The Hereticking

Post by The Other Dave » Sat May 11, 2019 11:32 am

Primarch wrote:In 8th:
Volume of Fire > Everything
I think that’s rather reductive - consider the ridiculous volume of fire your immortals threw at my (not especially high-toughness as vehicles go) armiger during our game at NagoyaHammer, for a grand total of one wound. A smaller number of higher-strength shots with reasonable armor penetration, preferably doing multiple wounds, would have given a very different result. Sure, a fire warrior could punch a land raider to death, but he’d need (does some math) literally about 1,000 turns, give or take.
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Re: 40Bolter WarActionHammer 2 - The Hereticking

Post by Primarch » Sat May 11, 2019 4:28 pm

Y'know what? I'm not going to argue.
You like 8th, I don't. Let's leave it at that.
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Re: 40Bolter WarActionHammer 2 - The Hereticking

Post by job » Sun May 12, 2019 12:24 am

I’ll say I did like aspects of old vehicle damage chart. By principle, I’m opposed to tables. They slow the game (especially anything requiring more than a d6 to resolve.) Cutlass was an example of a game I felt I was reading more often then playing. (I hate to say this, but Gorkamorka also fits this bill, but I just love it for what it is.) But I seemed to recall in 5th there was just that one table and most of us had it memorized from top to bottom.*

What I liked was the differentiation between vehicles and monsters, and the tactics and weapons load out you’d need to take to deal with both. A lascannon could wound either, but it would only inflict one wound on the beast while possibly wrecking the vehicle in one good shot. Conversely, plasma, auto cannons and heavy bolsters seemed to have a role working to inflict multiple wounds (at slightly lower pts prices).

I do like the way creatures and vehicles lose effectiveness in 8th as they take damage, but it again requires reading from charts. Since each unit has a fairly unique range of characteristics that are effected, it is hard to keep it all in mind.


That’s my two cents, or maybe what follows is: I think 6th May have been the best for the vehicle system, but I can’t divorce it from my feelings about the rest of the Edition.
Last edited by job on Mon May 13, 2019 1:53 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: 40Bolter WarActionHammer 2 - The Hereticking

Post by job » Sun May 12, 2019 12:42 am

* I should add there’s part of me that is irrational and sentimental about the Vehicle Damage chart. It had been part of the game since 3rd Ed until 7th in one form or another with basically all its entries staying relatively the same. Ah, the good old vehicle damage chart. You shall be remembered fondly. May you Rest In Peace.


Oh and I agree with Auxryn’s point about the theoretical vs the practice of the game. I haven’t had much trouble with light arms killing a lot of my vehicles. The only exception was when Armiger was hacked down my a band of berzerkers in combat. But that’s berzerkers and they are S5 and we’re attacking for the 3rd time in one round of combat.
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