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eekamouse

Real Talk about the Double Turn

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So... I'm becoming a bit concerned locally. A lot of us have picked up or dabbled into 40k with 8th Edition. I enjoy it. Some things I like better than AoS. Some things I don't. I think as a whole, I like AoS more. I like the models, the lore, the play styles, etc... all the intangibles. There's a certain charm with building lists around all the various toolkits, tactical objectives, stratagems, and overall "gameyness" of 40k though.

Well, many of those who have dipped into 40k (which is pretty much all of the AoS community here), have expressed a new found disdain for the Double Turn. We've all played enough games by a Double Turn or lack thereof. I'm in the camp of, "I like the Double Turn." But, unfortunately I heard a lot of grousing against it over the last couple of weeks at the shop here. The following statement has been uttered more than a few times while I was in the room: "They have to fix the Double Turn for AoS to remain viable."

I'm personally REALLY torn. I do think it should be looked at and addressed. But, as I said above, I like it... for the most part. However, I don't want to put my head in the sand and ignore the refrains of my fellow gamers though. They're the one's I play with. If they go away, there's less AoS to be had. I've done some hard thinking and reflecting, and I think I have one possible solution (or at least they can throw it in as an unofficial/official house rule that tournaments and the like can feel comfortable with).

Also, I am open to discussions of other changes. Just think of this as a brainstorm session. Please keep the quips to a minimum. Frankly, from my very local perspective there is a danger if it's not addressed in some fashion.

What if there are still Double Turns... but they stop after Round 3? 

Again, I love the Double Turn in a lot of ways. It makes you careful. It makes you bring balanced lists etc....

But!!! When you come into Rounds 4 and 5... everyone is locked in melee that's going to be in melee. Those shooty units that are locked in melee (and those protected from it) are going to get a free round of shooting your face off, followed by (yet another) around to pick their initial melee attacker. Some of your units will probably be hanging on by a thread. You just need that one nudge to turn a game hanging in the balance into a landslide. That to me... is never fun. You did everything you could and then just flipped a coin after about 90 minutes.

How would you fix the late-game-coin-flip-Double-Turn? Stop the initiative roll with Round 4 and beyond?

This still gives each player a chance to get a Double Turn (and play carefully for and around it), but never one player getting more than one Double Turn per game. Examples below.

Scenario 1

Round 1- Player A goes first in round one. Player B (obviously) goes second.

Round 2- Player B gets the double turn. Player A goes second.

Round 3 - Player A get the Double Turn, and both players are "happy". 

Scenario 2

Round 1- Player A goes first in round one. Player B (obviously) goes second.

Round 2- Player B gets the double turn. Player A goes second.

Round 3 - Player A loses Double Turn, but won't be subject to it again. (If Player A went first to start the game, they know this can happen).

Scenario 3

Round 1- Player A goes first in round one. Player B (obviously) goes second.

Round 2- Player B fails to get the Double Turn. Player A goes first again.

Round 3 - Player B still has a chance to get a Double Turn here. So, they get two chances at a Double Turn, since Player A got the first turn initiative.

Thoughts?

 

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So instead of having a system that is a turn-off for one camp or the other, you propose something half way that is a turn-off for both? o.O:D

In all seriousness, I suspect that this would raise just as many objectionable situations as it solves, and by switching something up part-way through a game it doesn't pass the user-friendliness test for me. I too am conflicted about the double turn, but I would want GW to come down firmly on one side or the other.

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Well.... everyone I ran it by at the shop actually really liked it. "Everyone" being five people.

I don't see this as a "camps" thing though.

Just to address the user friendly issue. I think on surface it might seem that way. I amended the rule in the core below. Changes in bold.

At the start of the first three battle rounds, both players roll a dice, rolling again in the case of a tie. The player that rolls highest decides who takes the first turn in that battle round. From round four onward, maintain the turn order as it was in round three.

Edited by eekamouse

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Considering how many times I have tabled armies on my 3rd turn, I feel like removing double turn until after the third round doesn't fix the issue. The early half of the game is where both sides have more units, meaning more power to swing if the double turn happens. 

It's objectively a horribly unbalanced rule. Going second is generally advantageous even WITHOUT the double turn. It allows you to react to enemy movement, often being the one who gets the charges. It allows you to get the last turn and snipe objectives/have the last say. When you add double turn, it goes off the deep-end. Now the poor soul who went first has to play EVERY round as if his opponent is going twice. No risk-taking, just super defensive play. Meanwhile his opponent can play as normal because at worst his opponent is going next like a normal balanced game. 

From a casual play perspective, it can be fun. It's exciting and allows for cool highs and lows. But when you really want to play the game as a competition of strategy, it messes that up. Too much power left to chance, and too much negative impact on how the first player has to play. 

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I have no problem with rolling for initiative. I think it's a cool mechanic that keeps the game interesting. Not knowing for sure if you'll get the double turn keeps players on their toes and interested in every move, they aren't planning exactly how they will reply but thinking of the possibilities. Playing with a strict turn order takes away part of the fun of the game. You'll always be able to retaliate anyway.

 

It also helps separate AoS from 40k now that 8th Ed is basically a more granular sci-fi AoS. 

Edited by Wraith01
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I don't see the double turn as a bad thing at all. It's a brilliant mechanic of the game that brings an added tactical challenge. I've been on the receiving end of double Stonelord double turns and that's not pretty. But if I'm going to play a game in its most competitive form I MUST accept that sometimes this is gonna happen. Just as much as I must accept that sometimes in the most crucial melee ever my buffed combat monster rolls 1s to hit with rerolls producing 1s again.

Double turn is a brilliant part of the game which absolutely must be considered as part of your own tactical approach to the game and your own list design.


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Literally 5$ Paypal.... to anyone that is also conflicted about it and wants to either discuss an alternative of their own, or pick a part the approach in the OP. 

Removing it all together is a valid approach as well. Just the quick reaction "type before thinking is irritating....". The Double Turn does have actual merit... to a degree. People may not like it, but it's certainly not objectively bad 100% of the time. I fear totally removing it will favor one certain style of army, with all the charge, move, run, bonuses available. Double Turns prevent (usually) everyone from just rushing across the table, and slogging melee D6 rolls for 90 minutes.

Edited by eekamouse

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I am always wary of taking a bedrock game mechanic and tossing it out.  Yes, we are told it's our game to tweak.  I get that. But at what point does tweaking becoming making a different game that was just based on the original? To me, rolling or initiative is one of the inviolable elements that is in the DNA of AoS - without it, you don't really have AoS anymore.

How much of the ruleset is designed and tested with this rule in mind? Weapon ranges? Point values? Movement rates?  Probably all of it. I can't see changing this rule without effectively collapsing the rest of it (even if the effects of that collapse are not immediately apparent).

 

Just my opinion.

 

Also, as Thanatos Ares points out, for every double turn that wins a game, we can probably find a failed charge, whiffed attack roll, or other thing that did the same.  We are not going to change the combat system so that (for example) higher point value units auto-win a combat so that things are more "fair" or "tactical" or "balanced" so why change initiative to do the same?  We need to accept that sometimes the dice do indeed swing things wildly - initiative is just another way this can happen, and I, for one, like what it adds much more than I hate the occasional game-swing.

Edited by Sleboda
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My local club of about 25 player who all really like the double turn.

It adds a edge to the game you have to play like your getting a double but also plan that you not going to get it. For example move your hard hitters up but have a unit with a 2" reach directly behind them. 

If you get the double you can charge if not you've  got the second unit as a deterrent. 

Also if your opponent get a double you will get the same chance of getting a double next turn. So play for it sometimes it's about damage limitation and waiting for your chance of a double. 

 

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Something that I feel is missing in this conversation is that even if you "roll higher initiative" and win the Ability to choose a double turn, you do not have to actually do so.

There are tactical situations where choosing a double turn may not be optimal.

In fact, if you "get" a double turn option and you decline to use it, you effectively have denied them the ability to get a double turn themselves.

There's an interesting article on AoS-Tactics that talks about them, along with tactical stuff to think about on why you might not want to take that option.

https://aos-tactics.com/2017/01/08/how-to-optimise-for-the-double-turn/

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As long as both sides have an equal chance to get the double turn, its fair. Sure, it can suck to be on the receiving end of a double turn- but it is equally awesome to be the one getting the double turn.

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I agree with much of what's being said here. You've always got screeners and what not to find off charges and Double Turns and all that good stuff... early game. I feel like the scenarios presented are all "early game" scenarios.

That tactics articles at aos-tactics.com is a MUST read for sure. 

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As long as both sides have an equal chance to get the double turn, its fair. Sure, it can suck to be on the receiving end of a double turn- but it is equally awesome to be the one getting the double turn.

 

If you choose to use your double turn option if you win initiative, you do open yourself to being on the receiving end of a double turn in the next battleround.

 

In the end it is a tactical decision that each player has to make for themselves given the current state of their battle

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At my local gaming store we played with an alternating turn order when some old Warhammer Fantasy players joined us and we felt the game wasn't as fun without rolling for initiative. Waiting for the double turn, even counting on it or dreading it, deeply affects the way the game is played. It keeps the players engaged in the flow of the game, not planning their counter move. Getting the double turn also allows for some of most devastating combos in the game and the best comebacks when you were loosing. 

I wouldn't change it at all.

Edited by Wraith01
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people just need to grow up, thats the rule if you dont like it, dont play the game

it forces you to super smart and plan ahead (prepare for the worst and hope for the best)

i think its a great rule and keeps you on your toes the whole duration of the game

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2 minutes ago, Josh said:

people just need to grow up, thats the rule if you dont like it, dont play the game

it forces you to super smart and plan ahead (prepare for the worst and hope for the best)

i think its a great rule and keeps you on your toes the whole duration of the game

I'll try not to take that tack when discussing it at the shop. However, I agree. 

I still say it swings the game too much late game.

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Finally accepting and playing with the initiative roll was a real watershed moment for my AoS journey. For the first 2 months my old group of previous edition vets, had house rules of alternating turn order and....I'm the only one still playing the game. The roll for turn order is some exciting stuff and one of my most memorable games was at coalescence when my opponent and I tied 4 times for the first roll off, lol.  

That said, though the guys I see and play regularly don't mind the double turn, I don't think they would quit playing if it went away or changed.  If losing the initiative roll would bring in a ton of new players locally, I might not lament its loss too much, but I am pretty skeptical that these hypothetical players would suddenly materialize.

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Something i have been thinking about, and how going 2nd is the best thing to do except for very rare army combos/scenarios.

is that whoever goes first, gets +1 to all initiative rolls.

This way you still need to prepare for a double turn, but can risk it not happening a bit more, AND if the other player does take a double turn, there is a much higher (66%) chance they will cop a double turn in return straight away.

this would make holding onto the double turn far more important, as if you take it, you are much more likely to have a double turn against you in exchange. 

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5 minutes ago, fued said:

Something i have been thinking about, and how going 2nd is the best thing to do except for very rare army combos/scenarios.

is that whoever goes first, gets +1 to all initiative rolls.

This way you still need to prepare for a double turn, but can risk it not happening a bit more, AND if the other player does take a double turn, there is a much higher (66%) chance they will cop a double turn in return straight away.

this would make holding onto the double turn far more important, as if you take it, you are much more likely to have a double turn against you in exchange. 

I like this!!

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I like the roll for initiative , adds a lot of tension. 

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The only change I would want would be to have tied initiative rolls default to the non-double-turn player. So if I went first this round and you want the double turn, you have to beat my roll the first try; otherwise, I go first in the next battle round. 

It's a tiny change but I think it would help ease the fear of facing that dreaded double turn. If I went first and roll a 6 for initiative I don't have to worry about you tying it and trying to beat you again. 

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9 minutes ago, rokapoke said:

The only change I would want would be to have tied initiative rolls default to the non-double-turn player. So if I went first this round and you want the double turn, you have to beat my roll the first try; otherwise, I go first in the next battle round. 

It's a tiny change but I think it would help ease the fear of facing that dreaded double turn. If I went first and roll a 6 for initiative I don't have to worry about you tying it and trying to beat you again. 

I did see a rule played on a Battle Report where they changed it to: If you tie, the other person gets the turn preventing a Double Turn. So you just have to beat the roll if you had initiative on the previous round. I gets that's effectively a "+1". 

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its just a matter of changing percentages.

equal re-rolling = 50% either way

first player winning on ties = 58% chance to stop double/take 2nd one

+1 for first player every roll = 66% chance to stop double/take 2nd one

Edited by fued
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Just now, Auticus said:

The double turn rule is what keeps a lot of people out of AOS here.  It makes the game super swingy.  Often we don't use it at all.  It is my hope the new GHB gives the "official option" of not using it.  

From a "health of the game" standpoint, here anyway... it would bring in far more players if it went away then those that like it and want it kept.  

I'm not sure if people care that much then adding them to the community makes it a "Healthier" community.

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5 minutes ago, Auticus said:

The double turn rule is what keeps a lot of people out of AOS here.  It makes the game super swingy.  Often we don't use it at all.  It is my hope the new GHB gives the "official option" of not using it.  

From a "health of the game" standpoint, here anyway... it would bring in far more players if it went away then those that like it and want it kept.  

I think this is pretty true (at least in my local area). I like the idea of them adding an "official" variant... similar to what they did with measuring base to base in the first GHB (House Rules section in Matched Play).

I think a running modifier might also be a nice addition. 

"If you have previously had a Double Turn, your opponent gets +1 (in addition to other modifiers) on their initiative roll."

Edited by eekamouse

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