Repercussions of the FAQ

So with the new FAQ out for a few days now, many players in the community are all up in a tizzy about it. It nerfs some units, buffs others, and in a few cases it completely changes the playstyles of some armies.

On one hand, I was pretty surprised at some of the questions that were asked because they were pretty "duh" questions that were covered in the main rule book. I was even more surprised that the designers actually answered these questions.

On the other hand, one question which I thought had zero credibility being answered was given an answer I did not expect: "Are super-heavy walkers limited to the same firing arc restrictions as regular walkers?"

Why did this make me want to skip over its answer? Well, because there's absolutely no reason in either the main rule book nor in the Imperial Knights codex to make you think otherwise. It says that "super-heavy walkers are walkers" except for a few added USRs (e.g., move through cover, invincible behemoth, fear, etc.) and increased movement distance.

But the answer was shocking: "No."

This changes the game quite a bit. Let me show you how in a couple quick diagrams.

This is now possible.
This is also now possible.
It essentially means that for an entire game, your Knight can double its survivability by stacking its defenses (highest armor value plus an invulnerable save) by always forward-facing its biggest threat. It never has to look away from an anti-vehicle squad, no matter who it's shooting at. Then factor that it can fire each of its 2-5 ranged weapons at different targets. Oh, and then choose one of them to assault (if within range).

Before, I had to tactically position it and make tough choices: Do I pivot to finish off Squad X, exposing a lower armor value to Squad Y? Or do I sacrifice a potential kill point by allowing them to live in order to keep my better armored facing toward the real threat?

You pretty much had to maneuver for an angle like this.
But as a player who uses a couple Dreadnoughts, I'm quite satisfied to see these other rules clarifications:
1. Units can't consolidate after melee combat with a walker.
2. Units can't use more than one krak/haywire grenade or melta bomb per squad in melee combat.

Honestly, I never understood why some people thought they could toss multiple grenades per unit. The rule book very clearly states only one model per unit may attempt to attach a grenade to a vehicle. Not to mention melta bombs are listed under grenades. But it doesn't matter now, that cheat method has been officially shut down.

I'm also so glad to see walls are impassible. It never made sense to me how people would use either a difficult terrain test or the skilled rider USR to just pass through them like ghosts. Seriously, people - they're walls. Walls. Think about it.

And why would anyone think that the same rules stacked with themselves? Anyone who's ever played a tabletop RPG or even wargame would know that bonuses (or penalties) never stack with themselves. So why would shrouded stack with shrouded? Duh.

Sadly, this just shows that the tabletop gaming community is being flooded by WAAC powergamers trying to twist and intentionally misinterpret rules just to benefit themselves.

But, anyway, I'm happy to see GW stopping a lot of these shenanigans. It might actually make for a better gaming experience now.

UPDATE 5/25/16:
Today Games Workshop released the FAQ for Imperial Knights, and it clarifies the firing arcs of super-heavy walkers. Forward-facing weapons have a 45° arc, carapace-mounted weapons have a 360° arc, and arm-mounted weapons have tank sponson arcs (about 225° outwards).

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