Saturday, July 24, 2010

WFB 8th Ed- The Empire in review


So I’ve seen a lot of opinions out there about Empire in 8th Edition Warhammer. I’ve read everything from knee jerk hyperbole about how Empire is now the crazy, most powerful army to numerous overtop strategies of taking 6 wizards a dozen Warmachines, or spaming this, that or another. .If your idea of fun is being an abusive bunghole to your opponent or gambling on dice rolls to get you big wins. You probably don’t read this blog anyway and this isn’t for you.. I don’t claim to be greatest player, nor do I have years of tournament wins to my credit , but when it comes to the hobby I have lived, breathed and slept with the Empire since Jan 2007. and with 300 something games under my belt and 4000+ points painted to a competition level. -It is the one army I can talk about with complete confidence in a fun and thinking mans way.. But enough about me,-on with the review!

Taking advantage of Bloggers new page feature, see the link above or the sidebar for this article at over 4000 words its bit long for a blogpost!

16 comments:

Muskie said...

Good article, but I don't like the new Blogger Page feature. WordPress has always had this feature, you can use WordPress.com for free, and you can have unlimited pages I think and more importantly you can comment on the page...

I don't understand why so many smart hobbyists run their blog on blogspot...

Nice looking army, but 7th edition doesn't seem that long ago. I haven't played since 5th edition I think, over a decade ago. But I'll be trying out the new rules tomorrow with Nurgle Daemons as they are easy to get on the table.

Goblins is my original Warhammer Fantasy Army and I think they got some bonuses especially their warmachines and large infantry blocks. It'll be good to no longer hear people whining how only one or two army lists can win...

Defeatists!

Conspyre said...

Re-read the Scouts rule, p. 79. There is no longer any requirement that you be out of LOS. Huntsmen have not lost any of their deployment advantages. Not really sure where all the skirmisher hate is coming from in the new edition... The Skirmish Formation rules make them significantly easier to adjudicate, and they retain infinite Free Reforms and Fire on the March. Losing the ability to get flank bonuses and disorder enemy units is a bummer, but considering how much more difficult it is to get those bonuses in the new edition anyway, it's a logical change.

Also, you're completely wrong about Pit of Shades not affecting the Tank. With the deletion of the Magic paragraph, all spells affect the Steam Tank. You'll note that that the errata does not change the Characteristic Tests section of the Steam Tank rules on p. 51. That part still says that it autofails all Initiative tests. I would start expecting any army with access to the standard magic lores to be rolling in with a way to drop the Tank in a pit. For the most part, the changes to toughness mean that things like Cannons aren't going to wound on 2+, but as you pointed out, bows and guns can still potentially wound it, and given the 1+ save is a standard armor save, and not a ward, it is now slightly more vulnerable to massed fire, especially from Handgunners and Thunderers. Overall, I think the changes to the Steam Tank were just what were needed- a bit of safety from the big guns, and the removal of the (absurd) anti-magic rules, not to mention the addition of the fairly brutal Chariot Difficult Terrain rules. That said, I would not be surprised to see some errata revisit just how healing it works- the wording of Regrowth (Life 5) is unclear on whether or not it works on a Chariot, and frankly, the application of Lifebloom and Healing Hand, while both legal, don't make a heck of a lot of sense in context.

Conspyre said...

Re-read the Scouts rule, p. 79. There is no longer any requirement that you be out of LOS. Huntsmen have not lost any of their deployment advantages. Not really sure where all the skirmisher hate is coming from in the new edition... The Skirmish Formation rules make them significantly easier to adjudicate, and they retain infinite Free Reforms and Fire on the March. Losing the ability to get flank bonuses and disorder enemy units is a bummer, but considering how much more difficult it is to get those bonuses in the new edition anyway, it's a logical change.

Also, you're completely wrong about Pit of Shades not affecting the Tank. With the deletion of the Magic paragraph, all spells affect the Steam Tank. You'll note that that the errata does not change the Characteristic Tests section of the Steam Tank rules on p. 51. That part still says that it autofails all Initiative tests. I would start expecting any army with access to the standard magic lores to be rolling in with a way to drop the Tank in a pit. For the most part, the changes to toughness mean that things like Cannons aren't going to wound on 2+, but as you pointed out, bows and guns can still potentially wound it, and given the 1+ save is a standard armor save, and not a ward, it is now slightly more vulnerable to massed fire, especially from Handgunners and Thunderers. Overall, I think the changes to the Steam Tank were just what were needed- a bit of safety from the big guns, and the removal of the (absurd) anti-magic rules, not to mention the addition of the fairly brutal Chariot Difficult Terrain rules. That said, I would not be surprised to see some errata revisit just how healing it works- the wording of Regrowth (Life 5) is unclear on whether or not it works on a Chariot, and frankly, the application of Lifebloom and Healing Hand, while both legal, don't make a heck of a lot of sense in context.

Conspyre said...

Also, I need to second the dislike for the extra page feature... I read posts from clicking through the Blogger dashboard, and moving to a second page, while keeping the main entry open to comment, is sort of a waste. I can see the desire to keep the homepage less cluttered, but then putting things behind a cut makes more sense. (this article http://www.askatechlord.com/2008/07/expandable-post-summaries.html helps explain it)

John@Plastic Legions said...

Bill- Huntsmen, too easy to kill/ nowhere to hide/ march blocking is nerfed with a leadership check. I love me some Huntsmen but at 100 points for 10..I rather put it into something else.

Stank- Read Empire FAQ 1.1
(after the magic fix)
the question is directly FAQ'd
"Does the Pit of Shades from the Lore of Shadows, effect the Steam Tank?" NO.
Can't really argue with that.

Now, I think its probably an oversight but until GW does an FAQ 1.2..Pit of Shades doesnt work.

Conspyre said...

This is what I get for reading the rules in the Errata without delving deeply enough into the FAQ. Interesting that they would answer the question in such a manner that utterly contradicts all of the evidence in the rules, but I'm not sure why I'm still shocked by that sort of thing. Seems like something that got left in from the previous incarnations of the FAQ without anyone looking too carefully at it. Idiots.

Riceeman said...

For someone thinking about starting an Empire army, that was really insightful and helpful. Thanks for that!

The healing of the STank - The Warrior Priest would not be able to because his prayers only affect characters and champions, not single models. Regrowth probably shouldn't work, due to it affecting units, and it specifically talking about regaining models rather then wounds. Lifebloom gives any unit within 12" the chance to regain a wound, and so that would work on the STank. That at least is my view of it. Hopefully they'll clear some of this up in the next FAQ.

John@Plastic Legions said...

@ Riceman, if you read the section "prayers of sigmar" word for word
it says "unless stated differently in the description" prayers can be cast on the priest himself, character or unit champ within 12"
however the prayers Healing Hand, Armor of Contempt, and Hammer of Sigmar all say "The Model" not "character" big distinction. I agree with the RAI however people will argue for the RAW, because it's stupidly written to be nebulous enough..

Conspyre said...

@John Even by RAW, that doesn't make any sense. "The model" is not the same as "any model". The two with obvious exceptions (Unbending Righteousness and Soulfire) both very clearly state the exception. Taking "The model" to be an exception to the rule about the Priest, a character, or a unit champion being the target requires a deliberate misreading of the rules, not just a precise application, as you'll find in many RAI vs RAW arguments.

Conspyre said...

@riceeman

You're right about Regrowth not working on the STank, sort of (I think). How's that for covering my bases? Check out P. 5, in the section on Forming Units. It states that things that are not blocks of troops, such as single characters, war machines, bigass monsters, and most importantly chariots (which the Steam Tank most certainly is now) are still counted as units. So ruling Regrowth out that way doesn't work. The language about not restoring wounds to characters and mounts seems promising, as is the wording for adding models back into units, however, it also contains rules for how to deal with multiwound models. Is it abusive to use it on the Steam Tank? Absolutely, but I'm not certain that a case against it is airtight.

John@Plastic Legions said...

I don't disagree- I just wish they GW would have cleared that up. because "The model" could also be an exception, Now I get that- "should that be the case then then original statement doesnt even apply in any of the prayers, which is silly. However this is exactly the kind of contradictory stuff that drives us nuts ..its going to come up...I have had the discussion with tourney people already talking about it. Should it be that Regrowth, Lifebloom dont work on the Stank and you can't heal it all its going to be alot less effective.

Conspyre said...

The only way that it's contradictory is with deliberate misunderstanding of the English language, and/or cheating. The word "THE" is not the same as the word "ANY". Granted, the page layout is a little crappy. The prayers shouldn't be in a sidebar, but that doesn't change the way the ENTIRE rule is worded. If people have just started talking about using that in that manner, then they are obviously LOOKING for loopholes. Honestly, if I ran into a judge that actually ruled in favor of the Warrior Priest healing the Tank, that would be the kind of thing that would lead to me leaving a tournament permanently, and advising everyone I know to do the same.

The wording on Lifebloom is uncontroversial- it absolutely works on the Steam Tank, and that is going to be pretty huge. Combined with the Lore of Life generally getting a boost, I would expect to see more of it already. The change to T10 makes the Steam Tank significantly more resilient against cannons and the other kind of big shots that used to knock it out of action, and that alone should be plenty to keep it as effective as it was in 7th.

xenite said...

FAQ 1.2 Q: "Is the hellblaster still retarded, and John should feel bad for shooting at Chaos Warriors with it, even if he provides his friends with free beer?" A: "Yes."

;)

I am looking forward to taking on the empire soon!

Stephen said...

Good article, but I am wondering if it relates to the most recent Army Book? I can't find anything about the General giving a magic standard to a State troops unit?

I have been out of the hobby for a few years, just getting back in and looking for help in designing armies - it's a completely different game than it was when I last played in 2004.

Thanks

John@Plastic.Legions said...

Hi Stephen
this is very old and was written at the release of 8th while the 7th Ed Empire book was still in play, shortly after this I became not fond of the direction the game and new army books took, that in addition to the direction our local players took with the game caused me to completely abandon it...I have not played since 2010, the release of the 8th Empire book sealed that for me. In ongoing played I know I questioned some of validity of my thoughts long termas the game morphed in 8th to its current form..from how it looked at 7th/8th crossover..

Stephen said...

I am still figuring out the changes to the system, there are a couple of mechanics that bug me - like changing ranks from 4 to 5 models, a bunch of my units were built on the 20mm x 80mm bases and now I have to add a single fig to the end of each one.

I suppose I have been lucky, in that the players near me are pretty reasonable and share an interest in keeping it fun.

 

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