Monday, October 26, 2015

Missing 40K From Back in the Day

I find myself wishing I could play a game of 40K using a mix of the current NOVA missions with 4th and 5th Edition rules and codices.

Anyone else ever feel that way?

Sometimes, when you talk to things like the craziness of 2+ re-rolls or weapons that auto-delete entire units on the roll of a 6, you hear a response of "well, there's been broken stuff in every edition! It took effectively a 2+ re-roll to kill falcons!"

Well, not really. On the falcon example alone, they could be quickly degraded on much better odds (rolling a pair of 5's and 6's would immobilize one, which got rid of a lot of their value), but across the game as a whole in 4th and 5th edition, most things could be killed and could kill. The arms race was far more nascent, a wider swathe of codices could compete (even if they had to min-max to do it), and army construction / the rules in general were more straightforward.

7th has some perks, not least of which is the amazing quality of the models GW is releasing lately, but I am pretty certain I'd find a way to squeeze time into my schedule for a semi-regular hybridized game of 40k a la the above ... taking the best bits of 4th and 5th + complex and interesting missions for a really nice platoon level wargame without a lot of the crazy big stuff and super powers.

In NOVA news, we're getting ramped up with leads now on planning. Most or all of our events from 2015 will be back, and it looks like we'll be adding a Horus Heresy / 30K event track, Imperial Assault, and Armada. Additionally, we'll take the concept of the CME short-run events like Highlander: Quickenings that we tried out this past year and convert them into proper register-able events to ensure a higher chance of a large # of them firing.

Much more than that to come, so stay tuned! Sorry it's been a quiet few months; things are crazy as ever in NOVA prep town.


  1. I miss reasonable 40k as well. 30k might suit your needs since it removes all of the 40k codexes. Epic 30k/40k appears to be alive and well quite surprisingly, so I am jumping into that whole hog. Ideally I would love to see a Bolt Action 40k mash up. I love the BA rules, but miss the 40k universe.

  2. great article. Hits really close to the heart. currently enjoying infinity to get my fix.

  3. I echo you and John. I would love to play with my 40K models with a more streamlined ruleset, a la Bolt Action or Dust Warfare.

    I would also like to see the emphasis be on toy soldiers (infantry). That is the essence of appeal for me. It goes back to playing with dime-store green army men in the dirt. Treat special weapons and vehicles/artillery as support pieces, and treat the big stuff as very rare centerpieces.

    All I see on the 40K tables now are action figures, aka Imperial Knights, Wraith Knights, and now StormSurges.

  4. An example of "old school"-style 40K, where infantry rules:

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  6. Do not miss the older editions. 5th edition was just parking lots and leaf blowers.

    I'd rather just play a different ruleset with the 40k models, then trying to pick an edition of 40k that was considered playable. Regardless, someone gets hosed!

  7. Not sure the good old days were all that good. Each edition had its highs and lows. The real frustration most players express is after 7 attempts why isn't it right?

  8. Why not offer a closed-format, like fixed army lists, in addition to the usual open-format "anything goes" style of play? Might make judging easier for paining if everyone is taking the same lists.

  9. I play Tau, and a friend of mine loves his orks, he has space wolves as well, but is an adamant role player, he's DMd every DnD campaign I've ever played. So his orks are quite fragile, we love gaming together and we recently discovered playing pseudo 5Rh edition was a blast.

    For starters we played a completely unique mission in which I lined 6 Tau tanks down the Centre of the board, 3 on each side, hammer and anvil style.

    The mission was for his orks to steal my tanks while the Tau greeted an ethereal emissary.

    He would get 2 points for each tank stolen, I 2 for each remaining. No points of a tank was destroyed.

    He needed only to have one model leave a unit to steal a hammerhead, and roll a D6 to attempt to start it. On a roll of a 1 it would stall. 2+ he could drive away and not flat out till his second turn (gotta learn dem controls)

    I noticed he wasn't rolling mob rule, and thought nothing of it. When he finally got a unit of 5 orks into assault range, I opted not to fire overwatch with the 4 other units I had in range. (took a cad. Farsight, aun'shi, 1 unit fire warriors, 1 unit Kroot. 1 unit Vespids, yes Vespids. A 6man stealth unit and 3 crises suits with plasma and fusion guns. Oh a sniper and 1 broadside.

    I still nearly tabled him. Without firing overwatch, and choosing to use the ethereal fnp roll instead of +1shot with a Full squad of firewarriors.

    The codexes are so poorly balanced it's just heart breaking. He had nobs and battle waggons and lootas and burnaz.

    We did play 7Th Ed secondary objectives with no maelstrom, just narrative. In the end my friend won by 1 point. 5-4 and we both had a blast. he stole 2 tanks and was starting to try blowing the remainders up so I couldn't have the points.

    With armies like orks, you gotta be imaginative and understanding if you want both parties to have fun.

    Yes, I gutted my army, and had a better evening for it.

    If my friend invited me to his house to play warhammer for 4 hours, the police thing to do is not have him putting all his models away on turn 2.

    Sorry long post for explaining house rules and dropping lots of 7the Ed bloat still make for some fun games.

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