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Count Adhemar
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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   18.07.16 9:27

@Massaen wrote:
I have seen sales figures, AoS sold more in terms of % sales in store than WHFB did - here in OZ at least - and the UK is similar according to my information.

I would also argue they are not desperately trying to revive anything. They have hit their expected and projected sales data and are now looking to improve.

I agree that AoS is selling better than WHFB was but you have to take into account that WHFB was absolutely tanking. That's why they killed it off! I very much doubt that they have hit any targets with AoS and the 'reboot' does stink a little of desperation. Financial reports come out shortly for GW which will give us an overall view of where their sales are heading over the last year, although sadly they don't break down sales between systems in the company accounts.

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Erebus
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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   18.07.16 12:54

AoS was one of the last acts of Kirby before Rountree took over as CEO. The General's Handbook is a small part of a large shift away from Kirby's piss poor approach - Rountree is reacknowledging GW is a game company, not just a model company, is not pretending a portion of the consumer base (tournament scene) doesn't exist like Kirby, and that any good company needs consumer feedback to improve.

That's not desperation, that's business.

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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   18.07.16 14:43

Are sales of the old Fantasy Battle Kits included in the sales figures for the AoS? If so how do they determine which sales are actually for AoS and those purchasing them for use in Fantasy Battle games?
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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   18.07.16 15:06

@CurstAlchemist wrote:
Are sales of the old Fantasy Battle Kits included in the sales figures for the AoS? If so how do they determine which sales are actually for AoS and those purchasing them for use in Fantasy Battle games?
Of course, since it's all Age of Sigmar now, just old models ported over to the new system. I don't think there's any way for them to accurately gage which system the models are being bought for, I mean not many people are going to walk inot a GW store and tell them that they buy the models to play Kings of War.
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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   19.07.16 14:02

@Count Adhemar wrote:
I agree that AoS is selling better than WHFB was but you have to take into account that WHFB was absolutely tanking. That's why they killed it off!

Kirby had actually planed for a WHFB reboot as early as 2004. The idea was that Chaos would just curbstomp all the other factions durring the Storm of Chaos campaign, followed by the Old World's destruction and the release of a new game in a different setting.
Being the cartoonish vill- excuse me, "genuis" he is, Kirby had gambled on the players to destroy Warhammer by letting them advance the fluff. But the crunch ended up getting very different results. Even though the narrative was rigged in their favour, Chaos lost so many games that they couldn't possibly be declared the winners.
That was probably the point at which Kirby decided to never let the player base be a part of his plans again.

@Erebus wrote:
AoS was one of the last acts of Kirby before Rountree took over as CEO. The General's Handbook is a small part of a large shift away from Kirby's piss poor approach - Rountree is reacknowledging GW is a game company, not just a model company, is not pretending a portion of the consumer base (tournament scene) doesn't exist like Kirby, and that any good company needs consumer feedback to improve.

That's not desperation, that's business.

Amen.
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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 3:29

I've played Dark Eldar since their new 5th edition release.  I've played 40k since the 4th edition Space Marine codex was new in 2005.  I remember when Battle for Macragge was new and that's what got me started.  I know some of you more ancient archons are going "you have merely adopted the game" in your spot-on Bane voice, but here me out.  I just bought the new Sylvaneth battletome and the General's Handbook.  While I wouldn't want 8th edition to be streamlined quite that much, I don't actually mind that much simplification.  Imagine for a moment that the Space Marines had 6 Psychic powers they could choose from in addition to a basic magic missile and ever-useful magic defense buff, and Special characters got their own unique powers and those six space-marine powers really captured how space marines do psychic powers, so much so that you don't really miss having access to 50 some odd psychic powers via 9 different disciplines.  Imagine the same with relics.  6 relics that capture the essence of the army, but named characters have their own special stuff, and these weapons sum up neatly what the model has.  Wouldn't it be nice to not have to buy extra weapons to be able to have all the weapons the squad can take, and for every other army to be similarly limited.  You get what's in the box, rather than having to buy 3 more Haywire blasters for your Scourge unit to field 4.  Now they don't need 4 to be effective.  Of course a power fist is a power fist and you can swap your sergeant's power fist for the power fist in the captain box you didn't use.  I feel like I should stop now and see if I'm communicating effectively.

Simply put:  If the Sylvaneth book is anything to go by, factions, their rules and options are getting more diverse in Sigmar, and assuming the Sylvaneth have set the standard, I would be happy to apply that standard to 40k as long as it was done just as well.

And for fork's sake can we stop having to take turns with our grenades? Can't we just make them one-use weapons or something?

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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 6:54

@Tounguekutter wrote:
I know some of you more ancient archons are going "you have merely adopted the game" in your spot-on Bane voice, but here me out.

You made me tea myself.

And to add, I believe it would be great to not need to buy extra parts for units from bits sellers etc just to field a unit. That's quite a big ask though that goes beyond just 8th edition core rules/codices and touches sales revenue on figures (arguably they sell more boxes to those of us needing those one or two extra parts).

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Causalis
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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 11:27

While we are talking about Age Of Sigmar and how 40K may undergo the same changes:

I have started playing Warhammer Fantasy at a pretty bad time (early 2015) when there were already rumours creeping up that the whole system will be discontinued. I didn't really care, I just wanted to play. It was fun learning the rules, as I like the complexity a lot. But in hindsight, I do have to say that some stuff was just frustrating (the movement phase took ages of example) etc.

The End Times came and went and Age Of Sigmar took the place. Boy was I pissed! The whole game felt very, very casual (no bonus for attacking the flanks/rear, no reacting to charges etc.) and the points were gone. And then GW killed of my beloved Tomb Kings!

Fast forward a year. GW seems to have listened - something that I would never EVER have anticipated since GW always displayed rather stubborn, old-fashioned and frankly strange business practices in the (admittedly short time) I deal with them.

So why this long introduction? Because I started playing Age Of Sigmar after absolutely hating its guts - and it is great! And this is something I could imagine many 40K players may also experience. If 8th edition would drastically streamline the game I imagine quite a lot of people being pissed that the game would lose some tactical depth.

But if the new battle tomes are anything to go by, then even the people who are suckes for complexity like me will be pleased. I think the races in AoS feel even more true to their nature than they did when Warhammer Fantasy was around. Now everything is geared towards making the Undead for example more... undead. With artefacts and what is essentially choosable Warlord Traits that enhance their ability to arise again or strike fear into the enemy.

For 40K I could see the same thing working really well. To be fair, the core rules of 40K offered a bit less tactical depth than those of Fantasy since stuff like arc-of-view, charge reactions (like fleeing) and boni/mali for number of models and direction of the attack are all missing. So 40K feels and plays pretty similar to Age Of Sigmar already.

If I were to guess how 8th Edition would look like, taking into account the direction in which Age Of Sigmar is going:

-Very streamlined gameplay with a de-cluttering of rules

-Strong(er) focus on the individual identities of the armies:
-Every unit may still be equipped with different weapons (in AoS you can choose between Sword & Shield or Greatsword for example) but without paying points for taking them
-Reduction of artefacts to 6 (again, no points). Only 1 artefact per army but for every additional troop choice taken over the required minimum you may take an additional artefact (on a different hero of course). Artefacts are strongly focused on the essence of the army. So Dark Eldar would probably have Artefacts that play on their Power From Pain and potent poison stuff.
Named/Special Characters can't take any artefacts, since they come with their own.
-Psychic Abilities are now faction-restricted, with only two spells that every Psyker knows (one buff, one direct damage spell) but with access to 6 faction-specific spells that again strongly focus on what their army is about.
-Rewards for constructing a "pure" list. In AoS the big armies are split into subfactions. Translated to 40K this would mean that if you were to field a list, completely consisting of Coven or Wych units you would get access to special formations and boni.

-Formations will cost points to unlock. GW recommends to play AoS at 2000 points and the point costs of unlocking a formation range from ~140 to ~400 points.

-Monstrous Creatures and big tanks will have a damage table that reduces their effectiveness when taking damage. So a Carnifex might have 10 wounds. After losing 0-3 wounds he is still fine. After losing 4 wounds he will lose (for example) an attack or hit worse. The more wounded he becomes, the less effective he will fight.

-Characteristic values (WS, BS, S, T etc.) might be replaced with static to-hit/to-wound values. Which would really change a lot. So a Space Marine who now always hits (with his bolter) on a 3+ will just have that static 3+ for his ranged weapon. Keep in mind that these static values can still be influenced in a lot of ways. Shooting at a Greater Unclean One for example will have you hit -1 worse etc.

All in all I think 8th Edition will be something that GW will construct very carefully. They do not want another outcry like when they dropped the initial Age Of Sigmar and it seems that they are listening to their customers (with the FAQ for example). I could also imagine that 8th edition will be nothing like Age Of Sigmar but just a really streamlined 40K. Whatever it will be, I think GW will try to make the changes in such a way that they don't alienate the current playerbase (too much).
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Count Adhemar
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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 11:58

I don't actually see any need for a drastic simplification of the game system. 40K is not, at its heart, a complicated game. It's just badly written and incredibly badly balanced. What it needs is clarity, consistency and balance.

By clarity I mean that rules should be written clearly and concisely. Take a look at Warmahordes for a good example of this. I swear at least half of the problems in 40K come from ambiguously worded rules (the other half is from battle brothers). Clearly written rules benefit all players, whether they are 'competitive' or 'casual' (for want of better terms).

By consistency I mean that a rule, unit, psychic power, item of wargear etc should always be the same, no matter which codex or supplement it appears in. If there is an exception to that rule then it needs to be explicitly stated or preferably replaced with an entirely different rule that does what the designer wants it to.

By balance I mean that a battle should be won by the choice of units to form an army and how that army is played, not by choice of codex. In an ideal world, the individual units within a codex and within each battlefield role should be balanced against each other (internal balance) so there is no auto-include unit and no unit that never sees play. Take a look at the Elites slot in our own codex. Would anyone in their right mind take Wracks over Grotesques? Wyches over Warriors? The codex should also be balanced against other codexes (external balance) so that you haven't lost the battle before the first dice are even rolled purely by picking a poorly written codex. GW is nowhere near that with the current incarnation of codexes, although everything post-Necrons is relatively close to each other in external balance. But if two equally skilled players were to play, for example, Blood Angels vs Dark Angels, the DA will win pretty much every time.

If GW were to achieve the above, or even come reasonably close, I think it would start to recover. If they just Sigmar it however then I think it's doomed.




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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 12:29

Quote :
I don't actually see any need for a drastic simplification of the game system. 40K is not, at its heart, a complicated game. It's just badly written and incredibly badly balanced. What it needs is clarity, consistency and balance.

Making convoluted written rules clearer is a simplification. As you said, 40K's core rules are pretty straight forward so even "doing the Age of Sigmar" wouldn't change much of the core mechanics.

Quote :
GW is nowhere near that with the current incarnation of codexes, although everything post-Necrons is relatively close to each other in external balance. But if two equally skilled players were to play, for example, Blood Angels vs Dark Angels, the DA will win pretty much every time.

Yes and sadly I don't see GW dialing back on the whole decurion-powerlevel. However, AoS actually does a good job to make each army (and as far as I have seen) and each unit viable. Sticking with what I know: Tomb Kings were never really good when Fantasy was around. They were mid-tier at most. But now they can take on High Elves or other top-tier armies no problem. Just like everything past Necrons got the Decurion-treatment and is rughly on the same (inherently high) powerlevel, so is everything in AoS. The Decurion-Powerlevel transitioned to being standard for every army. So internal and external balance is there (or at least GW is reasonably close), so I don't really see why 40K would be "doomed" if it goes into the same direction like Age Of Sigmar.

After all, everything you want got done with AoS. Every unit has its role and is mostly viable. The rules are pretty clear and former mid- or even low-tier armies can now go toe to toe with the big baddies out there.
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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 12:39

Well I must confess that I've never played AoS but I read a lot of fairly damning reviews when it was released and have yet to see anyone playing it in my local groups. If the General's Handbook (or whatever it's called) has fixed the issues (and I'm hearing conflicting reports on that) then fine but personally I would like to see 40K retain essentially the same system but with the aforementioned clarity, consistency and balance.

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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 12:52

So if you read damning reviews and now hear conflicting reports then that must mean that some of those reports are positive, right? Wink I am pretty sure that if I were to ask around what people think of 40K when it changed from 5th to 6th or 6th to 7th edition, I too would hear a lot of complaining. Doesn't mean the game is bad though, just that people are passionate about it and are adjusting to change (something we humans don't really like).

From what I've heard, the General's Handbook and the new Sylvania battle tome are recieved pretty well. Miniwargaming is reviewing those atm and they agree that the content is awesome. And remember - they are one of the biggest channels that also still play Warhammer Fantasy and they did almost no Age Of Sigmar reports prior to the GH release because they too concluded that it sucked.
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Count Adhemar
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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 13:06

@Causalis wrote:
So if you read damning reviews and now hear conflicting reports then that must mean that some of those reports are positive, right? Wink

The damning reviews were at release. The conflicting reports are current and relate to whether the General's Handbook has fixed the issues. So yes there are some positive reviews now. That does not mean I wish to play it though, nor to turn 40K into AoS in Space.

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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 13:10

Quote :
That does not mean I wish to play it though, nor to turn 40K into AoS in Space.

I agree with this sentiment, and it comes from the fact that there are so many mixed reviews. Like Count, I have not played it so I cannot speak from my own experiences. However, the fact that there were damning reviews upon release that have become mixed in more recent times (my local GW has recently started had people play it for the first time I have seen since release) is why I don't want 'AoS' in space. It would be different if there were a lot of positive reviews now that most people's disdain of the change has died down.

However, if they kepts making changes to AoS that made most of the community agree it was great and they released a simplified 40k in a similar style as to the revised AoS then I would be less cautious.

But how it stands now, I wouldn't welcome it.

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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 13:37

I'm not saying that 40K will become AoS in space. I think too many people from the community would be opposed to that idea and GW probably knows this.

However, the design and rule teams that are currently working on 8th edition will no doubt look into Age Of Sigmar. 8th Edition won't be a AoS clone that happens to have 40K minis in it. But it might borrow elements from it that have resonated with the community.

Quote :
However, if they kepts making changes to AoS that made most of the community agree it was great and they released a simplified 40k in a similar style as to the revised AoS then I would be less cautious.

Then I think you can be less cautious. I think GW has learned a lot about what the community wants after the disastrous launch of AoS. If anything, they'll release the 8th edition in a similar style to the revised AoS but I think it is more realistic that the 8th edition will be a big cleanup with some streamlining - but not such a drastic change as from Fantasy to Age Of Sigmar.

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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 14:54

I am strongly opposed to any simplification of the game that results in fewer options.

Fewer options = fewer ways to play the army = fewer strategies = more reliance on dice to determine winners = crap game.

Literally. If this game becomes all about the dice because they suck all the strategy and listbuilding out of the game, then I'd rather go to vegas and just shoot craps. They have WAY more women, no "nerd" stigma, and free drinks!

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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 15:06

Tuomas Pirinen, who older denizens may remember was a GW designer back in the day, had this to say about AoS

Quote :
In general, the new rules are streamlined, short, easy-to-absorb and will lead into quite straightforward games. Without tactical maneuvering and flank/back bonuses, the games will most likely become immense killing grounds in the middle, with one side completely wiped out, and the result having a lot to do with luck.

This seems to be quite a common view in many of the reviews that I read at the time. I'm not sure that just charging into the middle and smacking each other is particularly rewarding tactically.

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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 15:28

I'm not sure where Count Adhemar is finding these mixed reveiws for the Generals Handbook, a quick search online showed me nothing but posotive support for it and forums seem to be getting posotive posts on the book as well. Given that AoS had a bad release the fact that we're getting almost nothing but a positive outlook on the game a year later is excellent and a remarkably quick turnaround on GW's part.

What I have seen regarding continuing hate for the game is people that dislike the fluff with the old world being destroyed and those that dislike the change in system from a massed ranked battle game to a skirmish based game. I can understand the latter, it's now a very different style of game and if a ranked battle system with outmaneouvering your opponent being a big part of it was what you wanted then you're out of luck.

As for 4OK becoming AoS in space I don't think there's any worry on that as it always has been, a massed skirmish game with a Sci-fi setting rather than fantasy. I don't see that changing much as most of the alternatives seem to be smaller scale which is not what GW will go for since they want you to buy there models.
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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 15:48

@Imateria wrote:
I'm not sure where Count Adhemar is finding these mixed reveiws for the Generals Handbook, a quick search online showed me nothing but posotive support for it and forums seem to be getting posotive posts on the book as well.

Most of the negative comments I've seen have been regarding specific points costs (and having to buy a book for something that should have been in the rules to start with). I don't know how widespread those complaints are. Maybe it's just a vocal minority.

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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 19:27

Wait... so the complains are not about inherent game mechanics but about points cost, the one thing that will ALWAYS be an issue? >_>

As for the kill-pile part: Well, duh! What do you think the matches back in Warhammer Fantasy looked like? Turn 2 onward was one big melee either in the centre or along the flanks. Most armies had their strength in melee (except for the Elves and maybe Skaven which also had potent archers etc.). That argument is on the same level of critique like me complaining that 40K is just both armies standing across from each other and shooting until either the game ends or one army is wiped out.

"Reviews" like that are dangerous. It seems very biased as it just leaves out pretty much everything you can do tactics wise.

For example: If a unit is within 3" of an enemy unit in the close combat phase, it may pile in 3" and attack. That means that I can force my opponent to either position his unit in such a way that only a few models reach my unit OR he positions more models in base to base contact but then my nearby unit(s) may pile in and assist me. There is a whole lot more you can do to set up your opponent like retreating from melee (you are not locked in combat). This plays heavily into tactics from Fantasy like baiting charges with weaker units and then retreating them to have the enemy stand in an unfavourable position which leaves him open to charges from your more elite units etc.

AoS also features missions akin to those of 40K. The General's Handbook is actually quite the steal. You pay 20€ for 168 pages full of artworks, missions, scenarios for battles, artefacts and alliance abilities for the four groups (Chaos, Death, Destruction and Order) and of course points for every unit in the game (even discontinued armies like the Tomb Kings have their points in there).
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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 22:29

I think that choosing units and formations in AoS is a lot harder than it is in 40k, even if you normally don't have to worry so much about options.  There is a fair amount of synergy within each battletome (especially the Slyvaneth, from what I've heard) and I find myself cross-referencing abilities and bonuses much more than I ever did in 40k.  The difference is that in 40k, relatively few abilities complement and support each other the way abilities do in AoS.  Matched Play is also tightly restricted in ways that prevent cheesy combos and compel players to take a variety of spells, as you can only use one spell of its kind per turn. In 40k terms, you can only use the psychic power Fortune once per turn, regardless of how many Psykers have the power.  In Matched Play you can't just summon daemons or Lizardmen (now Seraphon) willy nilly to explode your army.  You have to set aside points in your army list which are drained proportionately by models you bring in by special abilities.  It's still worth it in some scenarios to hold a portion in reserve (you can choose what you spend those points on rather than being committed to a particular unit at the start of the battle) but it prevents suddenly out-numbering your opponent through magic.

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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   09.08.16 23:27

I do doubt that there is more synergy in AOS than 40k.  It's just that armies like tau, orks, guard, and tyranids are so dependent on it that we don't notice it anymore.  Synergy can still be painfully obvious in armies like dark angels or daemons though.

That said - I've only read the original AOS rules and most of the download war scrolls but not the general's hand book.  But - I have not seen the need to purchase it since I literally could not get a game of AOS going at this point if my life depended on it.  My FLGS doesn't even AOS anymore, and has replaced it largely with x-wing although there is renewed interest in Japanese collectible card games...

I'm not sure if GW just tried to change too much too soon, or if WHFB players are just old codgers, or what - but AOS is already dead and buried in my area, where I knew of 25-30 regular fantasy players a few years ago.  What I'm certain of though, is at this point people spend more time complaining about AOS and making photo memes about it than actually playing it.  The anger has become a replacement hobby in itself.
Exhibit A:
 

I also suspect a good chunk of the stormcast being sold now are just being converted in to true-scale marines.  That's what I, and all the other box set purchasers I know ultimately did with them.  Just google "sigmarine conversion" and you'll see what I'm talking about.  It was kind of a brilliant fall back honestly, but along with the obvious uses for the rest of that box set could be skewing aos sales overall.  As an example, I ultimately bought 4 or 5 box sets, but have not ever completed a game of AOS and use all the models I didn't trade or sell in 40k.
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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   10.08.16 2:29

@Count Adhemar wrote:
I don't actually see any need for a drastic simplification of the game system. 40K is not, at its heart, a complicated game. It's just badly written and incredibly badly balanced. What it needs is clarity, consistency and balance.

I believe this is what everyone wants - clarity, consistency and balance. But I suspect we have different opinions on how it could be achieved.

Personally, I think a drastic simplification would be very helpful in realising that ultimate goal (clarity, consistency, balance). I feel the number of bolted on additions to the core mechanics necessitate either a complete overhaul or a winding back of the extras, and would prefer the former.

If done well, I don't think that a drastic simplification needs to negatively impact the diversity of units, options or tactics available.

Tuomas Pirinen via Count Adhemar wrote:
In general, the new rules are streamlined, short, easy-to-absorb and will lead into quite straightforward games. Without tactical maneuvering and flank/back bonuses, the games will most likely become immense killing grounds in the middle, with one side completely wiped out, and the result having a lot to do with luck.

40k doesn't have the complexity of movement rules that Warhammer Fantasy had. If that is all that is changed, surely his statement should apply equally to our current edition of 40k?
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BetrayTheWorld
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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   10.08.16 3:25

WHFB had a 900 page rulebook, plus faction books. AoS was 1 page front and back when it came out. Let's not pretend the level of simplification comes down to 1 rule on a movement alteration. It's a hugely different game. I have no interest in that for 40k.

40k could have a pretty tight ruleset right now, if wording was decent and the rules team made consistent rules calls. They basically need a single internal rules guru to approve all rules changes and wording so that they stay consistent. If they oversimplify it, many people who participate in the hobby for the strategy will leave. It's the difference between checkers and chess.

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Causalis
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PostSubject: Re: 8th Edition   10.08.16 9:09

Quote :
WHFB had a 900 page rulebook, plus faction books

Yes, but how much of those pages contained rules and how many of those were actually relevant for playing (relevant as in used consistently)? There was a myriad of rules that would come up in very specific scenarios but other than that almost never saw play.

One of the big changes that AoS brought to the table was that (initially) artefacts were gone and since characteristic values like strenght, initiative etc. didn't exist any longer, stuff like strength reducing the armour save was also gone.

That is something I wish will stay for 40K - the characteristic values (BS, WS, S, T etc.) since those offer a huge variety of rules (weapons that wound against the Ini or LD for example, any kind of characteristic test, majority toughness to protect characters etc).
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