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123lac

Love the models but hate how the rules are sold

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It seems as though Games Workshop have a very fractured way of providing the rules of their game to their players.

Say my friend and I want the 'full experience' of matched play, but we are brand new players. We are going to need to obtain:

The Core Rules

Two battle tomes - one for each of our armies

The General's Handbook 2018

Malign Sorcery - for the realm artifacts

The FAQ documents

The errata for each of our battle tomes

 

Seems a little ridiculous, doesn't it? I can tell you as a new player I am more than put off by this. I love collecting and painting, but playing? So much easier to just play a video game...at least I get the rules and mechanics without having to seek them out.

 

It's not even the obvious financial investment to obtain these rules that puts me off. It's the fact that they're not just provided in one document. Surely GW would be better off by moving to a single, online, rules source? Like an app with a paid subscription or something similar. As it currently stands the system is just insane.

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Posted (edited)

Well in playing tournaments and wanting to have access to all of these extra rules you would really need to have access to all of them.

if you’re just looking for matched play against friends in a club, the ghb and corrulebook should be enough.

 

Edited by Skreech Verminking
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31 minutes ago, 123lac said:

</snip> It's the fact that they're not just provided in one document. Surely GW would be better off by moving to a single, online, rules source? Like an app with a paid subscription or something similar. As it currently stands the system is just insane.

Funny you say that. They did. The AoS app let's you buy all the books digitally and updates to the most recent version of the warscrolls. 

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6 minutes ago, Gotrek said:

Funny you say that. They did. The AoS app let's you buy all the books digitally and updates to the most recent version of the warscrolls. 

Buy all of the books.

They are still separate documents.

Also are they updated or do I still need to dig around for the FAQ/Errata?

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20 minutes ago, 123lac said:

It seems as though Games Workshop have a very fractured way of providing the rules of their game to their players.

Say my friend and I want the 'full experience' of matched play, but we are brand new players. We are going to need to obtain:

The Core Rules

Two battle tomes - one for each of our armies

The General's Handbook 2018

Malign Sorcery - for the realm artifacts

The FAQ documents

The errata for each of our battle tomes

 

Seems a little ridiculous, doesn't it? I can tell you as a new player I am more than put off by this. I love collecting and painting, but playing? So much easier to just play a video game...at least I get the rules and mechanics without having to seek them out.

 

It's not even the obvious financial investment to obtain these rules that puts me off. It's the fact that they're not just provided in one document. Surely GW would be better off by moving to a single, online, rules source? Like an app with a paid subscription or something similar. As it currently stands the system is just insane.

This topic has been discussed ad nauseam in other threads, especially recently. With the release of the new White Dwarf magazine format, there are going to be even more rules you'll need to hold onto depending on the type of game you are playing. It seems like for the time being this format of needing multiple books is here to stay.

Like what @Skreech Verminking says, if you want to be competitive then you will need all of the rules from the different books that are relevant to your army. If you want just a simple game with a friend there is always the single PDF document containing all of the core rules for free online.

We could speculate on the reasoning behind why GW has their rules setup this way. What we can say with reasonable certainty is that most people like having a hard copy of the rules and that these books are a hearty portion of GW's revenue. The problem is we have yet to figure out how to update the physical print of the books as the rules become updated lol. So we are stuck with countless FAQ documents and other books scattered about that we have to keep track of. This is annoying, especially for new players, but I don't think GW expects you to dive that deep into the game right away. Start with the core book, maybe a Battletome, then grow from there.

As time goes on GW will release more content for their games for the sake of not making the game stale, so books will continue to come out as long as demand for printed books exist. And like @Gotrek said, there are digital copies of the books these days so you won't have to physically carry everything anymore!

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2 minutes ago, 123lac said:

Buy all of the books.

They are still separate documents.

Also are they updated or do I still need to dig around for the FAQ/Errata?

The books being separate documents in the app is actually a good thing. It allows for organization. Like putting tabs in a binder. FAQs and errata are in the app too

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To be fair -

The General's Handbook 2018

Malign Sorcery - for the realm artifacts

The FAQ documents

The errata for each of our battle tomes

Are all "optional" and you don't have to purchase the errata/faq, simply print them out if you want to use them though to be fair most armies have minimal changes you can simply remember them / keep the document on a smart phone. In regards to malign sorcery you only need this if you physically want the models for the spells, which is a bundle with the book so I wouldn't consider it a purely book purchase. 

For matched play GHB is 100% required but the reason it's done separately is because it's updated annually which is fantastic for the game. 

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Well, usually, GHB alone is enough. FAQ is something you cannot avoid, it is usually for balance stuff, just like patches in video games.

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The GHB is not even necessary at all unless it has your allegiance abilities. 

The main thing the GHB had was point values, but those are both in the warscroll builder and in the app for free. 

Battleplans are nice, but there are 6 in the core book. You can also get an old GHB off ebay for a few bucks probably and have some battleplans to play.   Or just make your own. 

You and your friend don't have to play with the errata.  There's an errata for your intel CPU, did you read that before using it? 

The game is designed that a new player only needs the warscrolls and free core rules to play. For modern kits they come in the box, but you'll find more up to date ones using the app. 


If you want every option and every updated rule possible? Sure, it's complicated. But most things are... 

 

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I for one would gladly pay for a subscription service that collects all features and rules available for a faction or army gathered from every available source (ie rulebooks, battletomes, faqs, ghb, White Dwarf etc) and presents them in an easy to read format. Very easy to do digitally with tags and keywords, and does not negate printed material in any way.

Edited by Yokai
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If you are not really doing the whole competitive thing and mainly playing with friends then really I would say the minimum that you would need is the General's Handbook and the App.  You don't need the core rulebook as the app contains the main rules for how to play the game.  The General's Handbook will give you all of the matched play points for every army (aside from maybe an army that released after that edition of the GHB came out - such as Gloomspite Gitz).  The app will give you all of the model rules and the GHB has a larger selection of scenarios in it than the big rulebook does.

Honestly, that is what I would say the minimum is to have a fun game with friends.  From there you can add in other books if the extra stuff they contain is something that interests you.  

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2 minutes ago, Skabnoze said:

The General's Handbook will give you all of the matched play points for every army (aside from maybe an army that released after that edition of the GHB came out - such as Gloomspite Gitz).

 

This is just not a good reason to buy the GHB anymore. Both the free warscroll builder and the AoS app have points, and they are more current than the GHB (which was inaccurate on day 1).  The only reason i see to buy the GHB is if your particular army has rules in it, or if you want the battleplans.  

I would really scratch GHB from "must have".  I'd rather have the core book as a new player, at least that has the core rules and grand alliance abilities in it. 

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The core rulebook would be my first purchase as well.  Personally, I like all of the rule supplements so I don't have an issue.  In the above post I was simply looking at the smallest number of books that would give you the biggest bang for your buck for playing a basic game between two players.  I still think that is the App + GHB.

Edited by Skabnoze
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I think most of the books are cheaper on the app? that's mainly where I have been downloading my rules at any rate, and I can say that aside from some design hiccups in the app it is a very good investment (as long as you have a phone or ipad. do you guys not have phones? 😉 ) I think that the GHB and malign sorcery is half price compared to the print versions on there too...

but, as other people say the Generals handbook is mainly used for either the tomeless factions or for the battle plans, but missions can be made using the open war cards as well, which can do a better job making sure the game is memorable and unique for a 2,000 point game. 

 

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1 hour ago, sorokyl said:

This is just not a good reason to buy the GHB anymore. Both the free warscroll builder and the AoS app have points, and they are more current than the GHB (which was inaccurate on day 1).  The only reason i see to buy the GHB is if your particular army has rules in it, or if you want the battleplans.  

I would really scratch GHB from "must have".  I'd rather have the core book as a new player, at least that has the core rules and grand alliance abilities in it. 

The basic instructions for building a matched play army are included in the GHB -- I'm not sure if they appear in the core book. Many of the "is this army legal?" questions, both here at TGA and in other locations (e.g., Facebook) stem from people specifically avoiding a purchase of the GHB. I would suggest that this nudges it closer to "must have" status.

That said, I feel you make a good point, with the caveat that you need somebody to define matched play construction rules and then you can follow WarscrollBuilder or similar tools (which are also imperfect despite the best of intentions and effort).

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I wish it wasn't an app but you could read it via browser on my PC.  Phone screens are not large enough, and I have no use for an ipad except that.

 

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On 1/8/2019 at 11:53 PM, 123lac said:

It seems as though Games Workshop have a very fractured way of providing the rules of their game to their players.

Say my friend and I want the 'full experience' of matched play, but we are brand new players. We are going to need to obtain:

The Core Rules

Two battle tomes - one for each of our armies

The General's Handbook 2018

Malign Sorcery - for the realm artifacts

The FAQ documents

The errata for each of our battle tomes

 

Seems a little ridiculous, doesn't it? I can tell you as a new player I am more than put off by this. I love collecting and painting, but playing? So much easier to just play a video game.

First off, let me say I agree with your overall observation. I even started a similar tread a while back.

That said, video games are just that - simply games.

This, on the other hand, is a hobby, which is very different. 

I can, and do, pay Minecraft for hours on end (not to mention Spider-Man, Detroit, Madden, Darksiders, Borderlands, Hearthstone, Mortal Kombat, and so on), but none of them are in any way a hobby. They pass the time (too much of it, even for a retired guy) and are fun, but that's it.

Nothing owns my soul (and has owned it for about 35 years and counting) like miniature gaming.

But yes, please GW, do provide a digital one stop shop source for all rules. I would gladly pay$100 per year to get all current rules content , and that's in addition to the physical books with all the lovely art and stories (my limited Gitz book should be here soon to go with my limited edition Orks, Necrons, Knights, Death Guard (what a lovely set!), and Nighthaunts books).

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I have played 4 moths only matched play with core rules and GHB no issues. You can play the game with out any of the books actually you are provided free rules and warscrolls to use if you make up your own battleplans for casual games you can just play with out books at all

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To me, the biggest culprit is Malign Sorcery. The concept of core rules and army books is as old as the game systems, and the yearly updates in form of the General's Handbook is nothing new either (Chapter Approved dates back to the 90s). The idea of having three books is perfectly within the paradigm of the game.

Malign Sorcery, however, contains not a single word of rules that needs a separate book. I know enough about design and marketing economics to know why it's a separate book, but the set it borderline mandatory for matched play (regardless of what people will tell you), and the rules really should have been in the core book. I'd ideally have seen the rules as separate chapter there, and the individual spells available as either packs of three or clampacks separately.

As for the FAQs and errata, complaining about a comminity service that is freely available is never really going to sound good.

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Warhammer had Battle Magic and Arcane Magic as supplements as well. It's nothing new to make big time magic an add-on part of the game.

I, for one, like it that way.

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I suspect when AOS3 comes they may very well repackage stuff 

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1 hour ago, Sleboda said:

Warhammer had Battle Magic and Arcane Magic as supplements as well. It's nothing new to make big time magic an add-on part of the game.

I, for one, like it that way.

40k had Dark Millennium back in 2nd edition - which was functionally the exact same thing as the Battle Magic supplement for Fantasy.

I agree with you that I like how they returned the add-on supplements.  It makes it easier to play with or without the parts that your group enjoys and also helps simplify things when playing the game with newer players.

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7 minutes ago, Jetengine said:

I suspect when AOS3 comes they may very well repackage stuff 

Why combine products when you can sell them separately for a slightly increased combined MSRP?

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If you want to get the most bang for your buck, the first thing you need to do is be active in the community (here, FB, Twitter, etc.).  You can get a very good idea of what the content of every book is by following along with the discussion here. 

List building-wise, as an example:  you could probably make a decent Gloomspite Gitz list right this second, without spending a dime, by following along in the appropriate thread in the Destruction sub-forum (worst case:  copy a list that someone has already written).  At the very least, you can get an idea of what sorts of things are good. 

Gameplay-wise, as an example: if you follow along in the community, you already know how to cast an Endless Spell, how to unbind or dispel an Endless Spell, how Endless Spells and rolling for initiative work.  The warscrolls are free in the app.  It's literally all you need to know.

Community involvement will NOT prepare you for every option and every rule and every case and weird fringes, and it won't provide you with an in-game reference for some rules items.  It will prepare you for normal stuff, in normal amounts, in normal situations.  You can learn 95% of what you need to know just from following along in the forums (maybe searching now and then to see what the chatter was like when something was new).  And the last 5% you can very quickly reference in a borrowed book.  You can't do it this way without already knowing about it though, hence the community.

If you want to try doing it all by yourself, from scratch, in a vacuum, without any research, you're stuck buying and reading all those books before you start anything.

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Having core book+battletomes+expansions is just your usual way with these games. Can be hard for new people, but after a while you would never trade simplicity for losing having meaningful BTs!

GHB has little information that you need. In most cases, just battleplans. Only necessary if you are playing an army without updated BT, in which case it is the same number of books.

So really the only problem is how to incorporate FAQs. The current format is annoying. But really the only thing they can do is address the format. 

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