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Dave Fraser

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Everything posted by Dave Fraser

  1. OMG Ben dropping the big spoiler hints. Next GW AoS release is gonna be unicorns!!!
  2. Dave Fraser

    How balanced is AoS now?

    How balanced is AOS now? I'd argue the answer to that is it is reasonably well balanced. Are all armies totally even, absolutely not. If you look through the history of Warhammer GW has typically had 2-3 armies (out of 16) which rule the roost at any given time. I've not really tried to figure out how many armies currently exist for AOS, I'd assume a greater number than 16 and if you take top end competitive play there are usualy about 8-10 builds (I'll specify builds over armies as that feels more relevant these days) which will be there, or thereabouts, in a tournament. So that suggests the balance is better. What I'd say is different is there is a little more of a rock/paper/scissors matchup process going on between the armies than there was before. This would typically narrow down the number of sensible builds which could win an event if the sole purpose of the game was to kill your opponent, however, the scenarios allow different styles of armies to compete regardless of whether they will ultimately get smashed to bits on the table. As long as they are able to compete in the scenario then they can win the game and this means greater diversity. Tiers - meh, it's a sliding scale but there are obvious 'better' armies, usually these can be identified as those with significant movement tricks/redeployment tricks. vs those that don't. Shooting also feeds into it as if you have powerful enough shooting then you can often pick out those buff pieces which enable those tricks so you can at least stand a chance of taking your opponents winning combo away.
  3. Dave Fraser

    Help with my nurgle army please!

    Honest answer, try any of them. From the look of it they all could work, it will be more heavily influenced by how you like to play on the table than the decision between those 3 lists.
  4. Dave Fraser

    Hopes for the AoS FAQ

    KO hardly have a cornucopia of options. 4 regular characters, 1 special character (1 of which is in every list, 1 of which in a few and 3 which rarely hit the table) 1 battleline unit 3 non-battleline units (of which you regularly see 2) 3 boats (of which you regularly see one and sometimes one other) KO are not OP as a rule, there is one build which is and this is the build you see at tournaments because the rest are mediocre at best. What KO are is rather boring. The majority of the army is there to shoot you off and then there is one unit which is there to fight you in combat but is a glass hammer so it has to smash you off or it's probably dead.
  5. Dave Fraser

    Why Do We Hobby?

    So assume the typical backstory about playing as a kid, dropping it for beer & girls, getting a grown up job & life, stopping with beers & girls and finding myself a little bit bored & with spare time on my hands. I started back up around 2006 from memory, which would entirely make sense, out of uni I spent a couple of years working out what the hell I wanted to do with my life bouncing around a few jobs, then spent 3 years getting an accountancy qualification. This put me in my late 20s and sports etc had started to tail off from my previous 4-5 days a week and I had free time to fill. At this time in my life I lived on my own and I didn't own a TV. I got into 2 hobbies around then: 1. Online gaming - COD4 mostly, a bit of battlefront after that tailed off but I wasnt really wired for it 2. Painting models I didn't start gaming until 2009, so for the first couple of years it was just painting figs because I wanted to paint figs. This was me just picking up an old army and painting up all the remaining models I had still sitting around unpainted because I never got rid of my collection. I think what kicked me into gaming again was splitting up with my partner of the time. I now had all my weekends free with no commitments and a painted army, so figured why not give these tournament things a go. So I then spent the next few years smashing through a bunch of tournaments (I think I topped out at around 10 in a year at the highest) and then painting up new armies to open up different playstyles for me. But the main thing has always been I still enjoy painting the models. As I said I'm a qualified accountant and was working pretty long hours at times in what is considered a reasonably stressful environment and I found painting helped me unwind and relax after work. I then got myself down the road of trying to collect every single army for WFB so my collection grew rapidly but I was always painting too, so I ended up at 11 painted WFB armies when WFB got blown up. For AoS that 'catch em all' mentality doesn't really fit, so I've stopped trying to get them all and sold some off now. But I'm still painting to relax and I'm starting to enjoy trying to paint to a slightly higher standard. I'm not at competition painter levels yet and don't know if I'll ever get there but I think I'd like to see if I can paint an army or two up to the best army level as my next objective. So painting is to relax but I've also started to stretch myself with it too and to expand what I can create & learn as I do so. And it's that learning part which I'm enjoying more than anything else.
  6. Dave Fraser


    So like virtually everyone else I've been working on Nurgle. First up was a couple of trees, yeah I'll need a bunch more, but it was a starter for 10 to get me going, I don't want to overbuy on them. Following on from that I started with adding Rotigus to my existing Nurgle stuff. This model is a joy to paint. You can do it with a basecoate & wash and it will look pretty decent, you can then spend as much time as you want pushing the shadows & highlights further and get all the cool effects you want, picking out details and basically doing fun stuff with the model.
  7. Dave Fraser

    LVO Top 10 Army Lists

    They have the nurgle keyword, so can be taken, but they don't become battleline because that is Clan Pestilence only.
  8. Dave Fraser

    Thoughts on the new rule leaks?

    OMG THEY'VE NERFED DEATH FURTHER. what if the points come out and are significantly cheaper across the board, what if the bits we haven't seen swing the army to be amazing in a different way. What if they get a nurgleesque summon ability, what if, what if... Perhaps we should look at the more recent books which have come out Stormcasts, Tz, KO, Nurgle. None of them have been significant misses in my eyes (ok KO playstyle forces them to be a bit dull and Tz are possibly a little bit too good in some areas). Maybe, these guys are trying to come up with a solution for death which is thematic & fun & competitive all at the same time and their intent isn't just to run the whole faction into the ground.
  9. Dave Fraser

    The Shadespire News and Rumour Thread

    Models don't excite me as much as the other warbands, probably because they're not significantly different from the AOS ones on the whole. Leader is cool tho.
  10. Dave Fraser

    GW Deck Guides

    Obviously depends on board setup too. If it's longways then you can block them from being able to counter denial/contained and play to stall them out but actually what I'd do is get hyper agressive and take the fight entirely to them. Remember even defended attacks (unless they crit when you don't) allow pushbacks and if you've an agressive deck you should have the ability to put hurt on them more easily than them you. If you win turn rolls don't give them that opportunity for a last activiation sprint to your zone by always having the last go and keeping brightshield as a sweeper to push them off. Having a balanced deck with some objectives in it and keys also allows you to conter some of their scoring. Here is the deck I've been running and I find it gives me the options to counter the entirely stand off defensive deck.
  11. Dave Fraser

    Do you even stormcast bro?

    As a starter I've probably played less games than you, so take my opinion with due consideration. Why the deck works is because it can switch up. If you play it deep and defensively it doesn't work, if Stormcasts all start to play that way you'll see a surge of contained&denial in other peoples decks and they'll build to counter the non-engagement approach. What my deck does is slowplay T1 and try to get a few easy win objectives to punt upgrades on, as soon as I'm able to oneshot people (3 cards in the deck allow you to do this to anyone but Gurzag) I get very aggressive with them. That's why I have so many movement cards in the deck, to make it very difficult for an opponent to just range me out. Once you've got 2 stormcasts up in your opponents grill threatening takeouts it's very hard for them to put pressure on the contained/denial objectives. With the objective based decks it's still max 3 objectives in their zone unless you choose to put yours close to them and with the FAQ on spacing they're likely to not be consistently on the back board edge. Shardcaller increases the chance of them getting what they need but if they're playing shardcaller and the keys then you absolutely can outfight their warband on the table because the upgrades that help them fight aren't getting played. So work the odds on them managing to score 2,4 and 1,2 or 3,4 and typically that's not that high a chance of them getting 6+ pts out of those cards compared to you being relatively consistently able to bank 6 for the denial/contained combo. Also within my deck I also have shardcaller and the keys so, to an extent I can trade off to partially match their scoring output on objectives. I'm not really certain this is the best way to play it, but if I got the ability to get shardcaller out early and they don't then I'll happily try and have objectives 2 & 4 down my end. I'm not claiming I've got a hard counter for that style of deck, but I feel I have a decent chance of going against it and not consistently losing.
  12. Dave Fraser

    Do you even stormcast bro?

    So from the get go I’ve been playing with the golden boys. Interestingly they seem seem to get a mixed reaction as to whether they are easy to play or not, I take this as an indicator of pretty good balance. Here’s the first custom deck I built:
  13. Dave Fraser

    GW Deck Guides

    Weather the storm was the Steelhearts Champion deck I meant, the first one it opens up with.
  14. Dave Fraser

    GW Deck Guides

    I hate the stormcast deck on that site. The objectives in the deck encourage a dull/non-engagement game which with sensible play is relatively easy to counter with a balanced deck.
  15. Dave Fraser

    Do you even stormcast bro?

    Tweaked up my deck again. Pretty happy with the ploys. Tho I do miss scavenger. The big add is misdirection as I got my plans screwed up by distraction a couple of times so being able to bounce that elsewhere feels useful. Shattered terrain is an experiment but I wonder if taking 1 damage is a worthwhile trade off for being able to single shot stormcasts/orruks. cursed artefact is now gone , often I was too reluctant to use it as the wound meant I got one shotted more often and I’d rather take a hit and always survive than have a higher chance of surviving but if I don’t it’s more significant. Swapped helpful whispers back in for it. Objectives ive found I’ve cycled my deck often enough that 4x3 pointers is actually a detriment to early turns. With only 3 obj cards scored at the end of r3 I’m more flexible now. That said I’m not a huge fan of some of what I’ve put in, will need to test if I’d be better with hold objective [x].
  16. I think you need to revisit the Max Murderhost one. What it does: By the herophase of their T1 the murderhost will have moved 4d6 forwards with all 8 units. Movement phase the BL are a further 5". So on average results that is 19" advance followed by 2d6 charge should see them able to charge you in your deployment zone T1. What makes this list work is not just a powerful alphastrike but the fact they can flood the board and hold objectives at the same time. With a murderhost you typically see a relatively small number of additional points spent outside the murderhost. The most commonly seen unit is the bloodsecrator banner to make all of these units immune to battleshock, plus bonus attacks. Further to that maybe one additional character to try and compete in the two hero scoring scenarios. Another advantage of the lists will be the frequently seen fleshhound units with their inbuilt dispelling ability and the reroll charges on the fleshhounds allowing them to reliably get into combat and tie up units to restrict your movement to counter the bloodletters. How to counter it: If you can survive the alphastrike then you need to kill the bloodsecrator to stand any chance of killing the 120 bloodletters. This should be the priority over the Murderhost hero if you intend to try and kill their army. Bloodletters themselves die relatively easily and being able to double through on your damage by taking more off through battleshock makes a huge difference. The most important thing to remember in this matchup is what wins the game, it's not killing your opponent, it's scoring more scenario points. As long as you don't lose significant elements of your army T1 (meaning you need to apply the correct bubblewrapping discussed in the original post) you should be able to put a major dent in the murderhost with your return damage output but you need to ensure you don't let their army put the scenario points up too far before you can cut through their army.
  17. So the only tournament I'm currently signed up to for 2018 is GW Heat 2 which is mid April. I've got a few armies I could choose between to take: Sylvaneth - Dreadwood, painted it at the end of last year but still not played a game with it. Blades of Khorne - I've got a reasonably chunky khorne army, I enjoy playing them but it's mostly an infantry horde so not the most interesting visual spectacle. Maggotkin - Triple GUO would be the list I'd like to play but currently I use a non-GW model for one of my GUO so would need to buy and paint another just for this event. Skaven - I've got a pretty hefty Skaven army, so could put something together. Might encourage me to paint up a handful of models I've had sat for a few months that I should really get round to doing. Moonclan - An army I really enjoy playing but the basic grots aren't painted terribly well, I would probably want to put some effort into making them look better. Tomb Kings - They'll be quite a unique army, can't imagine too many people will run them these days. Not terribly well painted however. I don't want to take a top competitive list, playing that way isn't of interest to me right now. But I also don't want to get crushed into the dirt every single game. What I'm trying to decide around is more relating to whether I try to take an army and try to get myself a painting nomination. Most of my armies are nicely painted but I don't think they quite hit those heady heights so I'd definitely have to put a little more effort into trying to push their quality a little further.
  18. Dave Fraser

    [Query] Best Selling Painted Miniatures?

    Hard to say to be honest. For AOS painted armies, even at a high tabletop standard, are generally not selling for a significant premium over retail price, obviously there will be exceptions to this but seems to be fairly commonly seen. Painting individual models to a really high end level can result in people being prepared to pay a premium to pick up display models. There is obviously a market out there for commission painters but getting yourself known and established is the challenge.
  19. Yeah, that's why I didn't use it, I used the Mierce Miniatures Plague Daemon which I backed on Kickstarter so have had it for the last 2-3 years. It is slightly smaller than the new GW one but not significantly so.
  20. I'm not really sold on using the FW version as anything other than the regular GUO now that it is actually smaller than the plastic version! Doesn't feel very exalted!
  21. Below is some drivel I wrote when 8th ed was coming to an end and we knew something was next but had no idea what. I came across it when tidying up my computer recently and it's sparked a new rambling thought on the state of the game in AOS at present, I'll put that in the second message in the post. 9th Edition is (supposedly) coming And for an old ****** like me what better than to look back at what has gone before rather than panicking about what is about to come. I’m really thinking just 8th ed when I start writing this but it’s worth remembering I started Warhammer back at 3rd Ed so have a long familiarity with edition changes and all that jazz. So 8th edition dropped on 10 July 2010, on that basis will be closing on 5 years old assuming 9th comes out this year as forecast. Looking back over the editions this is broadly in line with the frequency of updates, 6th was the longest with 6 years but I’d say that was largely due to them hitting the reset button on army books that edition so everything was being reworked. At Release So how was the transition to 8th received? Well there was much gnashing of teeth and wailing from certain aspects of the community, plenty of people claiming it was too random to be competitive, Yahtzee being a frequently used moniker and that premeasuring took the skill out the game. Other parts of the community hailed it as the best thing to ever happen to the game pointing to the fact that it finally made infantry viable choices for armies and helped balance the game. There were many other significant changes too, I’d say it was the biggest step change through the editions of any, though you could argue 5th to 6th and the total overhaul of armies & the magic system from cards to dice was greater but I’d not put that solely down to the rules though. Personally I was still playing dwarfs at the time and the change from max 6” charge including the distance for the wheel to 15” max measure to closest point was amazing! Suddenly I was taking part in a large chunk of the game which had basically not been an option in the past. As a dwarf player I could guess warmachine accurate to ½” going most of the way across the table so being able to just pick a point didn’t really change much. I never considered the ability to guess ranges a gaming skill so it was nice that what was considered tactical/strategic skill was actually more important than micromanagement and being able to eyeball distances. At the end of 7th all the armies were 2x10 horrors 3x5-6 fleshhounds, 2x single fiends, billy the bloodthirster and the Masque of slannesh (or variants upon that theme) or shooty DE with a pendant of khaleth dreadlord on a dragon. The fact that the ‘tactical’ skill in most of these armies was having a longer charge range than most people and being able to spot that 2” gap where you could charge and your opponent couldn’t never really struck me as particularly skilful so I wasn’t overly disappointed to see it go. So yes I was a fan of the new edition from the get go. Now have a look at what armies appeared. You had some early tournament wins by Vampires with the graveguard horde (hitting on 2’s), Daemons with 2 big hordes later becoming up to 3 hordes of bloodletters as standard netlists. Combat infantry DE with mindrazor with hordes of corsairs became common. Infantry was king. Cavalry were written off as worthless as they couldn’t break steadfast and would just get ground out. Combat characters were deemed too vulnerable to the attacks coming back (ohh that was another big one, 7th ed models killed didn’t get to strike back, so you wiped front ranks out and were safe from any return damage) and mages became the character of preference, the new ‘super spells’ were identified as ‘autowin buttons as you could delete half a horde of infantry and the characters hiding in there by just spamming 6 dice. Early Books (up to Ogres) That ran along for a while and after 6m people were complaining of the game being stagnant as we’d had no new books then O&G came out, everyone complained about only 8 magic items in the book, TK dropped and the same, plus their unique magic lore got nerfed but T8 beasties were supposedly going to break the game (guess what, they didn’t and are now considered junk). Then we got Ogres. Ogres changed the environment. They went from being a pitiful weak army filled with pointless limitations on their build to a powerhouse and that powerhouse had a name… It was mournfang. All of a sudden there was a unit with so much damage output it could blow it’s way through the infantry hordes steadfast in a round or two tops, they didn’t even require the charge to be effective. Plus with a 2+ save and parry were survivable (unlike the TK necropolis knights, which lacked the save or the manoeuvrability to dominate the game). Monstrous Cavalry just became the game changer. VC came out and were as ever comped to death over ethereals and screams but didn’t overly change much then Empire followed and added to the MC trend which basically sealed the fate of infanty armies. Now you needed to be either manoeuvrable to avoid the MC or survivable enough to take a charge from them and not get broken, which really meant a 1+ AS and not getting stomped, so suddenly cavalry units started to have a purpose, but they also needed damage output to beat the MC so combat characters started to feed back into the game. And we got 10 months without a book at this point so the ‘meta’ settled down. Largely I think this is the period on which most people base their views of 8th being a reasonably balanced game. The Rise of Chaos After that we got warriors and daemons in quick succession early 2013 and skullcrushers were a big thing. The daemons book release was hilarious, people declared it nerfed to the point of being one of the bottom tier armies (I actually bought them at this point buying from ragequitters thinking I was getting a middlish army) wow did that reaction get proven wrong. It wasn’t really until the ETC that the UK cottoned on but the wall of Nurgle style army became very popular and very common. It was one of the few counters to the super-fast & hard hitting WoC armies as they tended to win the grind. Suddenly the power of the O&G book becomes an all-time high due to their abilty to ignore armour and just delete WoC and ogres with relative ease but they don’t fare terribly well against daemons putting a balancing check in place. The year of the Elf Then came the time of the Elves HE in May 2013, DE in Oct 2013 and basically it turned everything around again. Bolt throwers & mobility meant the smashy WoC were no longer dominant, Monst Cav were relatively easy picking too. By now it’s worth noting the “powerhouse” book of ogres have been well and truly put in their place as each of these books basically trumped them. Power creep? I’d guess you say yes but at the same time there is a bit more of a rock, paper, scissors scenario at play. You can design a list which will comfortably beat an all comer list for one of these armies but that will conversely be hugely weak against another. Dwarfs and WE rounded out the releases under 8th, neither hugely changed the status of affairs though both add to the Rock/paper/scissors matchup consideration for list design. With that we come to where we are now (ignoring ET as a entirely different topic), I suppose the one thing to mention is the FAQ which bumped the character allowance to 50% of your army in each of lords & heroes being the next big meta shift but it’s not a huge issue where ET characters are banned as comp generally hits the 4-5 armies that get the biggest bonus from it. The End (of) Times (bro) The ET stuff has been a bit of silly fun in many peoples’ opinion bringing us all to the brink of a new edition ready to reset everything to a fresh start. And you know what, I’m still really enjoying playing 8th ed, so through all of this they’ve not lost me, the game has kept fun and fresh challenges over the course of 5 years. I’ve heard a few people bemoaning the staleness of the game (I was pretty much there just before ET released and it gave me a new lease of life) but when I look back at 7th I know I was sick of it for a good 18m before it went and that simply hasn’t been the case for me in 8th. Do I like the super characters, no not really, they completely change the nature of the game. But all the other stuff is generally quite cool as long as not taken to silly extremes, restrictions (or self-restraint) make it fun. Overall Thoughts on 8th So there we have it, armies went from all infantry hordes, though monstrous cavalry round to cavalry buses and now often into character hammer through the cycle of the edition. I’ve even noticed a few hordes coming back into the game recently. It does make me wonder are the much maligned GW design team really as bad at what they do as we think? They’ve incentivised gamers at different points in the cycle of 8th ed to buy pretty much every unit type from every book in the game and not done it in a way what has had people calling them out for forcing them to buy new things, to me it feels like they deserve a round of applause for a job well done. In conclusion I say bravo GW, WFB has been a wonderful ride through 8th and whoever has been the hand at the tiller over that time (the much maligned Matt Ward is certainly responsible for elves onwards from what I understand) have given me a great deal of pleasure from playing their game. Now for 9th I have only one wish, please make it as fun a journey as 8th was.
  22. Dave Fraser

    Losing Battalion Drops

    I think you're overstating the impact of these formations . For Tz look at the likes of the lists that Mark Wildman & Sedge ran mid 2017, both of them did not use formations and had a mix of units and placed highly in tournaments. Similarly there have been people successfully using liberators (sure not units of 30) in stormcasts from day 1 and still take them over judicators for their battleline. Paladins do struggle slightly more in the absence of a formation to drop them inside 9" charge range but then they can use the banner, or lightning chariot to give them mobility after they drop, so they're far from bad. Protectors even have a value being setup on the table due to their shooting modifier. Also looking at the stormcasts as an army and not just a couple of units have remained highly competitive, for example the Les Martin TM list doesn't use Battalions. So I think there is a danger of overstating the value of 'battalions' when what is really giving certain armies power is a specific battalions rules eg vanguard wing being able to lift & drop the 30 liberators from one combat to another without having to roll dice and to string them through an opponent to hit characters behind. That is what makes it incredibly good. Putting 30 liberators in any other battalion doesn't make them have that kind of power.
  23. Dave Fraser

    Maggotkin book

    So I posted up my intentions for 2018 and you know what wasn't in there despite having seen the preview pics, Nurgle, but you know what is now in my to do list... Nurgle. That said it's not an awful lot that I need to add to my army, currently I own the following nurgle stuff all painted up: 1 Exalted Great Unclean One (FW model) 1 Great Unclean One (Alternative Plague Daemon nurle from Mierce) 1 Herald of Nurgle 30 Plaguebearers 3 Nurglings 6 Plague Drones 7 Beasts of Nurgle That by itself does not make a 2000pts force. So what I'm looking at is a fun excuse to run my big monsters and the reviews by Facehammer & The Black Sun (Chris Tomlin) discussed a Battalion using 3 Great Unclean Ones and that just sounds like ace fun and a good excuse to get my big gribbies on the table. This lead me to the following list: eGUO 500 GUO 340 Rotigus 340 (new special character GUO) Battalion 160 30 Plaguebearers 320 5 Blight Kings 160 5 Blight Kings 160 Total 1990 The list is 10pts away from what I'd wanted which was to be able to drop 5 Blight Kings down to Nurgle Chaos Warriors and then have 100pts for a summoning pool available. The alternative I've been considering is dropping the exalted down to just a regular GUO (given the new GUO is bigger it doesn't feel very special anymore so would assume people will not be too upset by this). That then frees up 160pts, so I can then drop the blight kings to warriors giving me 230pts, which could become Festus because I love his model and have it sat waiting to do and also he has some tasty rules, plus gives me access to the rotbringer spell that makes 6's mortal wounds to basically turn the plaguebearers into an offensive unit as well as defensive. The second list just feels a lot more rounded and means I can actually use the contagion points for something other than trees but it's not using the eGUO as what it is that is always something I'm wary of doing.
  24. Dave Fraser

    AOS - The state of the game

    AOS I wrote the above on WFB when it was clearly going into what I assumed was a new edition, instead what we got was AOS. That was when 8th Edition WFB was 5 years old, AOS is now roughly 2.5 years old so you could say about half way through the traditional edition cycle and I thought it might be interesting to consider the state of the game. Core Rules Everyone talks about the 4 pages of rules as being the rulebook. Personally I think it’s nonsense, if you go look at those 4 pages, nearly 2 of them are things you ignore as soon as you pick up GHB. So it’s 2 pages + GHB that is really the rulebook. It’s relatively safe to say the core rules work, everything can setup, move, shoot, fight etc without major conflict. There are enough decisions around placement, target priority & the likes that it makes for a fun and tactical game. Deployment & scenarios means that the game isn’t just about killing your opponent’s army, which is lucky because this game would be awful if that was what mattered. I’d argue that because of the manner in which armies have gone there are a few armies who simply try and blow you off the table and scenarios are secondary consideration as it is and only the variety of scenarios helps keep this in check. Armies At this point in the development cycle it is very easy to point to death & destruction and say the game is incomplete, they’ve each had minimal updates and lag behind the Order & Chaos factions significantly. But we’ve seen that death have something coming, so hopefully 2018 sees this balance itself out. On a wider look at armies in the game and considering the state of affairs there are a couple of obvious themes of how the game plays (at the top level) right now: 1. Turn 1 mobility/engagement is everything and 2. Extreme a. survivability or b. Damage output (with either MW or Rend 2 or greater) The clearest representation of this being at the masters where you had: Vanguard Wing 30 1+ save liberators that can be dropped virtually anywhere on the table. KO Barak Zilfin – drops down/motors across on the boat and then shoots you off the board Murderhost – Zerg’s across the board and murderises you with mortal wounds Fatesworn & Sayl – Drops a unit of hard to kill warriors in your face then sits behind on the objectives & blasts you with magic. Seraphon – Drops units of 40 hard to kill saurus in your face and grabs objectives while blasting you. Changehost – units have to be killed 3 times over to clear them off an objective! MW spell spam. Basically all these armies try to take the whole game away from you in the first turn by pinning your army off objectives or killing you off the board so you can’t score objectives. At the masters there seemed to be quite a few games which were being called at turn 2 or 3 as the result was a foregone conclusion as a result of the lists above dong what they do. So what does this mean for the game, well I’d argue a lot of games being decided from just a single turn doesn’t really make for a terribly enjoyable game, effectively it turns the games into a bit of a coinflip, either my ‘all in’ tactic works and I win the game, or it doesn’t and I lose. What I would much prefer see is there to be more options for counters, and ongoing play actually impacting the outcome of the game. Obviously this is only really observed in a few lists which are the top end of competitive play. As yet it’s not endemic to the tournament scene, so the majority of games still have opportunity to run their course over the 5 turns. However, as observed in games like Magic the Gathering if a list becomes so competitive it skews the entire competitive scene then this is not good for the health of the game as every army becomes either that competitive list or a list which counters it. What we have seen by GW is a willingness to take action when they do see this happening with particular builds. Mainly it’s been via the FAQ process but we saw the Azyros get changed, we’ve seen tweaks to KO & Tzeentch to knock out some of what have been deemed overly powerful lists. As long as they continue to FAQ the outlier lists then I’m not too upset about these lists coming to the fore. It is important the player base are aware they’ll get max 6 months of usage but then likely have their wings clipped, as knowing it will keep everyone from flocking to those lists and help maintain diversity within the competitive game. State of the game In summary there is a clear delineation of the ‘haves’ and the ‘have nots’ in the game at this point in time but the frequency of update is doing a good job of stopping that from entirely unbalancing the game and wrecking it as a fun & competitive spectacle. Each new army coming out does feel super fluffy and fun meaning that every time I get a real urge to start that new army, which is exactly what GW wants. Also Warhammer has always devolved into a smaller number of armies who can genuinely go out and win an event. I’d argue there are a greater number of different lists which fall into that category now than in previous editions. Where my issue with this lies is the gulf between the top and the rest feels quite large at present which makes playing one of those have nots an exercise in frustration if you find yourself regularly bumping up into that top list territory. Overall I’m still really enjoying AOS but I can see why some people have got disenchanted with it given the way some matchups can be very polarising. Ultimately it comes down to what you want out the game, if you’re playing to try and win events, then that’s the price you play. If you’re just playing for the fun of a competitive game where either player can win then you probably want to put some thought into army construction and how far you should push any of the lists which can really dominate the game. What are peoples thoughts?
  25. Dave Fraser

    GW's half-year report.

    What's that you say, they had an awesome set of 6m results in the year when a new (and significantly so) edition of 40k got released, who knew!