Monday, 19 May 2014

Rising from the Depths

Well, that’s at least one resolution broken.  Things got hectic, I had some games to play on another continent and everything broke loose at work.  Nevertheless, I’m back now for a nebulous amount of time before the next calamitous disastrocity hits.  Or a new game comes out.  Or I forget. Or my time machine works. Who can tell?  I can’t.  That’s why I need a time machine.  Oh, wait a sec…

That was my future self.  Apparently my time machine was a failure, so that puts the kibosh on that plan.  Anyway what has happened in the world of my favourite hobby?  Well, one of them anyway.  Yep, trailing ponderously late behind the news, this post is about 7th edition, or at least my thoughts about it.  There’s been a bit of a drip feed of information about this and I feel that GW has actually been handling this release about right.  The White Dwarf Weekly format has been a great help with this and it seems like they’ve really hit their stride with that publication.  Which is more than I can say for Visions.  I reckon they should call time on that one, personally.  I don’t hate it though.  Not really.  Some of my friends do, and I can understand why.  I really don’t think it’s worth the asking price.  I only get it because I’m on a standing order subscription-y thing and it’s less than half price and even then, I’m deeply dubious about its value.  It’s not worthless.  The photos are great and some of the displays, set pieces and Golden Daemon stuff is fantastic.  One of the recent editions had a Sanguinary guard trying to escape a veritable tide of Tyranids and it was truly exceptional.  It’s called The Last Light, and you all really owe it to yourselves to see it.

Anyway, with that tangent dispatched, on to 40k 7th edition.  My initial response to the rumours was to believe that this was a tweak edition, 6.5 ed, I suppose.  Just a tidying up of the existing rules, incorporating Stronghold Assault and Escalation.  Maybe a few alterations to some of the more contentious rules.  However, I was wrong and the dripfeed of new rules and teasers began.  My reactions to change are usually equitable to a few of the stages of mourning, if I’m feeling pretentious and dramatic about it.  I usually don’t go for the denial or anger stages.  Depression (or more accurately, pessimism) is a fairly hefty stopover for me though and this is where the added clarification of the rules really helped me through into the acceptance category.  I’m not sure if ‘Cautiously Optimistic’ is one of the stages of grief, but that’s roughly where I am at the moment.

I’m nowhere near as amped about this as I was with the advent of 6th.  That’s probably because 6th hasn’t been around long enough to wear out its welcome.  I was getting seriously sick of 5th when it finally received the bullet.  I’d had enough of endless mechanised armies and the infuriating survivability of vehicles.  That hasn’t happened in 6th.  Not yet.  Yeah sure there are a great many things I don’t like about 6th.  Especially with Escalation and the like, it was becoming too much of a scissor-paper-stone game.  If some brought a D-weapon and you couldn’t kill before it fired twice, then you would most likely lose.  If you took it down before it could fire, then the opponent would most likely lose.  That didn’t look like fun to me.  Still doesn’t.  Will 7th change that dynamic?  I don’t know.  There are tweaks to how D-weapons operate.  You’ll get invulnerable saves against them for example, which is nice.  Unfortunately, that does heavily imply that there will be more of this crap in even low-level games.  And there I go into pessimism again.  Is mood swing one of the stage of grief?

Regardless of my exponentially fracturing mental state, a lot of the new rules discussed are looking interesting.  The varying objectives mid-game will provided a very interesting dynamic.  Bound and Unbound, initially one of the horror stories about the new ruleset has been counterbalance by scoring advantages for Bound armies.  The Psychic phase is a new addition and it looks like it will be a nicely interactive event, even for the non-pysker armies.  As a Dark Eldar-turned-Necron/Khorne player, I was never a fan of the lack of decent psychic defence (I felt it a step down from 5th) and the new phase looks like it will add more of a push-pull feel and add more narrative depth for those so inclined.  It should also give us a way of denying blessings, which is where a lot of the filth settled in 6th.  I’m hearing heavy rumours of Ignores Cover meaning only a modifier to cover save rather than a full denial, which is a move a highly support.  No, it has nothing to do with me playing Nids and Venomthropes.  I haven’t heard a great deal about the allies system, and I know that my ideal situation of nixing Battle Brothers entirely my well be out of bounds, but (like most other things in 7th) I remain Cautiously Optimistic.

Guess we’ll find out on 2th, eh?

So long meatsacs!

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