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S133arcanite

Why and If Age of Sigmar Is In A Great Spot Right Now

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So...

As of this weekend, the Ogor and Bonereaper battletomes have come out. This means that the entire Destruction range is complete (as in, every model has its own battletome); as is the entire Death range. Similarly, Chaos and Order are only two battletomes away.

The AoS tournament scene is becoming more and more diverse (granted, not perfectly balanced), and narrative events are as  vibrant as ever. As far as I can see, this is the best state that AoS has been, ever.

Thoughts? Agree? Disagree?...

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Largely agree, though balancing is very slow and this is an issue.

What I have seen points towards differing modes of play within a faction, those may not be balanced very well, but they exist.

Objective occupation should be changed to wounds remaining though, to help low counts and monsters.

Battleshock seems also unbalanced and unfun. There is lots of cheap immunity, which frustrates players that want to use it, but when not immune, it isn't a fun mechanic either.

Known broken armies are not balanced enough in GHB, see Slaanesh especially. With a 1/year update, that is not really acceptable.

Edited by zilberfrid
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We knew that GW was starting to get all of AoS onto 2.0 and this year has been great for it. Even though Order lost a lot of models (esp much of the high elf range); we are nearing the point where we stop getting new books and big cuts. In fact the last army is Slaves to Darkness who at present look like they might only lose marauders (even if GW doesn't stop selling them who will buy them with the awesome Warcry warbands on sale); and their finecast heroes (perhaps also chaos chosen). After that there's only Seraphon, KO and Tzeentch to bring into the world of 2.0 gaming! 
 

So yep we are up for increasingly exciting times! There is some power issues going on and many are hoping for Slaanesh to get some changes (I really hope they adjust depravity rather than points because its more the depravity breaking things than models being under or over costed). What's encouraging is that the once "OMG they are so broken Daughters of Khaine" have remained strong, but many other armies have come up to meet their strength. Plus we've seen that people have started to work out how to beat them (and other armies). The AoS competition stats do show that there's a general high popularity for 2.0 battletome armies. 

 

I think early next year we will get a real celebration when GW moves everything to 2.0. That hsould mark the point at which we stop losing models and enter a time of new models and replacement sculpts with only one or two lost here and there and always coming with a big addition to replace at the same time. 

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The only people that are miffed are the people that want things to be more balanced.  Which seems to be a pretty small minority.  The rest of the community seems to be pretty strong and I think that would indicate things are going great and other fantasy game systems on the market are pretty much doomed to be crushed because you can't stop the gw juggernaut.  

So largely agree.

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Honestly most people want balance, both internal (more variety of choice within a battletome) and inter-army. 

Though right now it seems that GW is doing pretty well for balance in AoS 2.0. There are a few outliers, but by and large its in a very good spot. Also with the rumour leak being confirmed it seems that Slaves are set for December 14th in getting a new battletome. This in itself means we will hit Christmas with all of AoS having a Battletome and only 3 old tomes to update to 2.0 as we go into 2020. This means perhaps just one or two months and AoS will be fully on 2.0! That will be a landmark moment for the game! 

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I'm not sure there has ever been a past edition during which every faction had an army book, maybe sixth ed came closest? On that metric its definitely doing well!

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29 minutes ago, EccentricCircle said:

I'm not sure there has ever been a past edition during which every faction had an army book, maybe sixth ed came closest? On that metric its definitely doing well!

Then why post it before checking ? At best u got a lucky guess at worst u spread miss information . 15 min of google and you could be sure...

here's a link for you https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warhammer_Army_Book

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7 minutes ago, Grunaldi said:

Then why post it before checking ? At best u got a lucky guess at worst u spread miss information . 15 min of google and you could be sure...

here's a link for you https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warhammer_Army_Book

Eh I don't think it's an issue, it's a casual conversation and the poster even said they're not sure. 

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5 minutes ago, Grunaldi said:

Then why post it before checking ? At best u got a lucky guess at worst u spread miss information . 15 min of google and you could be sure...

here's a link for you https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warhammer_Army_Book

Eh the list is hard to read because it only lists the publication dates and doesn't consider if an army is actually present in the game itself. 

Also don't forget to look at the dates look at 6th edition. Dwarves got their book in 2006 when 6th started in 2000. So for 6 years they didn't have an up-to-date book. Plus in 2006 7th edition began. The wiki doesn't mention the status of the battletome so its hard to tell if the dwarves were ready for the new edition or for the old.

Still the 1.5 or so years since 2.0 launched is a FAR cry from the previous pattern where you could, as shown, wait 6 years for anything. Granted in those days every new tome was a major release with new and updated models; in counter though GW was less likely to do in-between releases. So that could be 6 years never knowing if or when you'd get a tome and not getting many new toys. 

 

Even AoS right now after its terribly start is only around the 5 year bracket so its already besting previous editions (though in contrast we've lost a lot as well along the way) 

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Actually thats not true.   I have a couple friends who played back then and the dwarf book was the third book released for 6th edition.  Supposedly empire and dwarf gunlines were a thing in the tournament scene back then for a couple of years.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warhammer_Army_Book

You'll see dwarves had 2 books for 6th edition.  The 2006 book and the January 2001 book (the third released book for that edition).  Ravening Hordes was the general army list for all armies so was not a specific army book.

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I think overall AOS is in a pretty good spot.  
The community seems to be continuously growing. The army diversity at events is getting better, there's even a few new armies out in this edition. 

It's still not in a great place competitively. There's still some balance issues... and some "negative play experience" issues, some power creep issues. 
There's issues with slow updates and FAQs too.   
But these issues aren't so terrible that they're negatively affecting the overall hobby. Which is good. Players seem to genuinely have fun at events and aren't too stressed like they can be in other games. 

I'd like to see a bit more consistency on the admin side of things. More regular balance updates, better distribution of rules... if you're giving every army terrain+3 spells.... then do it and don't skip some randomly. It's clear some battletomes are a bit of an afterthought and not supported as well as others. 
The barrier to entry for some armies like Sylvaneth is a bit dumb too.... having to buy multiple forests makes it one of the most expensive armies to buy. 
Also should have updated some of the horribly old models like skaven acolytes, jezzails, saurus warriors etc... 

Bonereapers don't really do it for me visually but I'm looking forward to what the future holds for aelfs. 

Overall, I think the following describes AOS currently pretty well:
"Doing well but there's always room for improvement"

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I just came back from an 80 man tournament called Bloodshed and although I won 2 of my 5 games I enjoyed every single one. There was a fantastic variety of armies doing well and competing. Walking around the tournament felt like exploring the Mortal Realms themselves! So yes I think AoS is in a great spot right now

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9 hours ago, Grunaldi said:

Then why post it before checking ? At best u got a lucky guess at worst u spread miss information . 15 min of google and you could be sure...

here's a link for you https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Warhammer_Army_Book

Because its not a problem of just listing the books, but rather of defining what counted as factions at any given time. I didn't need to Google a list of books, i could literally see them all on my bookshelf while writing, and knew for a fact that all extant factions had at least one book across either 4e or 5e, that 7e and 8e didn't update everything that had come before, and that 6e was closest to a complete set, but missing a separate Daemons book, and updated Chaos Dwarfs. However where I was uncertain was whether that stuff was a valid mark against it. CDs weren't really a thing any more by that point, and Chaos was in the process of splitting into multiple factions, having originally just been one armybook for the lot. It would be absurd to criticise 5e for its lack of tomb king and vampire count books, when they were all just factions within the undead army back then. Without reading a lot of army lists and potentially cross referencing with catalogues I couldn't be certain whether they "missed a book" that edition or not. Its quite possible that Daemons were fully playable with their own lists, despite not having a book, or that all daemon lists were not yet a thing. 6e and 7e also shared trade dress in some cases so there were a couple of books that could have been either. Sure lexicanum could have told me that. However most of this was beyond the scope of the post I wanted to write, and I was typig it on my tablet after already going to bed anyway, so wasn't about to start doing extensive research. I thus couched my post slightly more vaguely than I could have, knowing that someone would be quick to chime in if 6e was considered a complete update by the standards of the time. 

I didn't expect a fairly casual post on a typically friendly forum to be held to the highest standards of scholarship, and was wanting to spark discussion, more than provide a definitive answer.

I hope that helps.

Edited by EccentricCircle
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My own opinion?  Yes it's in a great place currently!  Our lore & background has moved forward significantly, the new battletomes coming out are fantastic and really oozing character along with advancements in miniature design and production.  We've had a number of campaigns/expansions that have allowed us to get involved with how the world will move forward #PraiseNagash and the community has gone from strength to strength.

Now, don't get me wrong, it doesn't take too much searching to find some things that aren't ideal.  As loathe as I am to use the phrase "balance", there are some armies/lists that are simply superior to others under some/all circumstances.  This can lead to some people getting a really negative game experience at times - often compounded by some people who perhaps don't approach the game with the same mindset as others.

That said, I remember the olden-days - when as mentioned, some army books would take half a decade to come out and FAQs were something you discussed with your opponent and rolled a dice when you disagreed!

Can AoS be better - too right!  For me that's one of the joys about the system - there is so much potential!  But we mustn't forget that the system is still young - we've gone past our terrible two's and just got into Toddler years now 😜

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I’d say yes, AoS is in a great spot atm.  Nearly every army has a 2.0 tome, and the lore is expanding nicely.  Balance could be better (yes I’m one of those who would like balance) but beyond that, we’re doing great. :)

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I think the best part about AoS is that armies are given rules and allegiance abilities based on theme. Every army looks like a coherent force, unlike 40K where you have random imperial soup.

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2 hours ago, RuneBrush said:

!  But we mustn't forget that the system is still young - we've gone past our terrible two's and just got into Toddler years now 😜

No no no you've got it wrong. The terrible twos and toddlers was Old World chuntering along. Then we hit the teenage rebellion years which was AoS launch. Now AoS is steadily pushing though either A-levels or University and having to get its head down and sort itself out! 

 

Now our next worries might be relationships, breakups, marriage (gods that will be expensive) and the risks of children (Warmaster AoS style).

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10 minutes ago, Overread said:

No no no you've got it wrong. The terrible twos and toddlers was Old World chuntering along. Then we hit the teenage rebellion years which was AoS launch. Now AoS is steadily pushing though either A-levels or University and having to get its head down and sort itself out! 

 

Now our next worries might be relationships, breakups, marriage (gods that will be expensive) and the risks of children (Warmaster AoS style).

Well, we do already see some relationships, having Chaos deamons in common with 40k, and Stormcast being highly relatable to Space Marines between the lovers as well...

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8 hours ago, EccentricCircle said:

Because its not a problem of just listing the books, but rather of defining what counted as factions at any given time. I didn't need to Google a list of books, i could literally see them all on my bookshelf while writing, and knew for a fact that all extant factions had at least one book across either 4e or 5e, that 7e and 8e didn't update everything that had come before, and that 6e was closest to a complete set, but missing a separate Daemons book, and updated Chaos Dwarfs. However where I was uncertain was whether that stuff was a valid mark against it. CDs weren't really a thing any more by that point, and Chaos was in the process of splitting into multiple factions, having originally just been one armybook for the lot. It would be absurd to criticise 5e for its lack of tomb king and vampire count books, when they were all just factions within the undead army back then. Without reading a lot of army lists and potentially cross referencing with catalogues I couldn't be certain whether they "missed a book" that edition or not. Its quite possible that Daemons were fully playable with their own lists, despite not having a book, or that all daemon lists were not yet a thing. 6e and 7e also shared trade dress in some cases so there were a couple of books that could have been either. Sure lexicanum could have told me that. However most of this was beyond the scope of the post I wanted to write, and I was typig it on my tablet after already going to bed anyway, so wasn't about to start doing extensive research. I thus couched my post slightly more vaguely than I could have, knowing that someone would be quick to chime in if 6e was considered a complete update by the standards of the time. 

+++ MOD EDIT +++ Removed a comment that came across as sarcastic

On he serious note ... it wasn't my purpose to shame/attack /disrespect you  so if I did then I am truly sorry.
Just "6th edition had all but 2 of the army books making it most complete edition to date" is so much better then " I'm not sure but maybe ...." even in casual conversation but maybe that's only my opinion.

And if you really have all army books since 4th editions could you share a photo ?because it's an awesome collection that you just don't see everyday.

Edited by RuneBrush

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Cautiously optimistic on balance front certainly.  Seems like they have really learned some lessons since Skaven/Slaanesh.  The books since (including what I have seen from ogres/bonereepers) seem to range from mid-range to strong, but not OP which is ideal.  bonereepers had me worried with some of the early reveals, but their warscrolls make me less worried, points are going to be key, but seems like they won't be the next slaanesh.  Hopefully this trend keeps rolling!  Definitely seems like things, Slaanesh aside, are in a pretty good place.

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1 hour ago, Grunaldi said:

On he serious note ... it wasn't my purpose to shame/attack /disrespect you  so if I did then I am truly sorry.
Just "6th edition had all but 2 of the army books making it most complete edition to date" is so much better then " I'm not sure but maybe ...." even in casual conversation but maybe that's only my opinion.

And if you really have all army books since 4th editions could you share a photo ?because it's an awesome collection that you just don't see everyday.

No worries, just please consider how you word critical posts, and whether criticism is justified by the situation.

I'd argue that this isn't a thread about army books across editions. What I wanted to communicate is that proportion of armies with books is one metric by which editions can be judged, and and that AoS was doing fairly well in that account.

Anyway, here is a snapshot of my Warhammer shelves: IMG_9254.JPG.973f79ec4675103863b26511f078e5aa.JPG


Kislev and Ravening Hordes are in there too, but are a bit too thin to be visible. I also have the big box set for WFRP 3e, but that doesn't fit on the shelves. I'm not sure what I'll do when I get around to getting the next few battle tomes, maybe 40K will have to move to a different shelf!

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I could spend an age answering this but for me I'll distill the good and bad in a few bullets.

 

First the good:

- the AoS lore is more solid than it's ever been. There's more structure, more excitement, and this is borne out in the dozens of flavours of play we get in the game.

-You can literally do anything with the rules, from tournaments to Dungeons & Dragon style skirmish games. Its about the most flexible system out there. It relies only on the imagination and ingenuity of the gamers. What more could you want?

- the models are simply incredible. Some of the best sculpts out there. Sure, there are exceptions in the production line, but I've had non-gamers say some of my models are works of art, and I'm only a half-decent painter.

- battletomes are being updated all the time and no two factions feel the same; keeps the interest, keeps the excitement

 

And now for the bad:

- battletomes and factions are getting updates all the time, and so quickly that mistakes are too common. Some rules decisions are frankly bewildering. Its not balance, just a lack of common-gaming-sense and proper quality control.

- the sculpts are good, but boy are we now paying for it. Price hikes feel a bit like a cash grab to many of us. It wont be long until the bank of goodwill runs out. There are other game systems out there...

- the AoS lore is better, but the books are not. I haven't finished one yet, and while the writers are in my mind excellent, I get the feeling they're not given enough freedom to write decent lore-making fiction. There's too much GW interference. And the realms themselves are too infinite for their own good. Realms are less ephemeral these days, but GW need to do this better to be engaging.

 

Overall though, AoS is much better, but my enjoyment lies on a knife's edge. I've spent too much on the hobby to ditch it, but I could have a nice 2 week holiday, or a down payment on a car, if I put the lot on eBay, you know?

Edited by Mcthew

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Yea I'd say it's in a pretty stellar spot. The models are consistently fantastic, and the lore is engaging without being as dire as it was in the past. It's quite popular in my local, too. There's at least one AoS game at my club per week, and I have a big pool of people to draw from whenever I want to get a game.

I have some farily deep issues with them using powercreep as a purchase-pusher for a system that clearly was not designed for competitive play. But they've also put out a honest to god, low cost, competitive alternative in Underworlds. It'd be remiss for me to complain about a company's balance in one system when they're actively giving full support to a perfectly robust tournament-focused system on the side.

AoS in general is a reflection of how GW's grown as a company. I remember hopping out of the hobby in the early 2010's because of how isolated and elitist it felt to get into wargaming. These days its as easy as picking up one of the nightvault boxes. Add to that more people in my age range having stable jobs and actually being able to afford the hobby, and the overall experience is pretty darn alright.

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On 10/26/2019 at 6:04 AM, S133arcanite said:

Thoughts? Agree? Disagree?...

Totally agree.  Model and Lore the game is 10/10. Rules wise GW just needs to keep up with FAQs and the move to 6 month pointing was helpful. It concerns me that slaanesh summoning has not been fixed yet. It makes me feel like GW doesnt give a **** about the overall balance of top end builds.

If GW fixed the most abusive builds the game would go from a good game to a great game imo

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