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Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 00:46:08


Post by: ccs


 Canadian 5th wrote:

It's not a matter of need. It's a hypothetical point to prove your rationale is bankrupt. If everyone can just play the same deck (caw blade), then there's no reason to encourage a diversity of deck archetypes. Hell, right now GW seems to have taken it to heart, and just *really* wants everyone to play Primaris.

Caw Blade? My man, that's a deck older than my last game of 40k. Maybe you should stop talking about MtG if that's the most modern deck you can name.


So he should stop talking about out-of-date MTG decks but you can continue talking about your out-of-date 40k experience....

BTW, this is about 40k & minis gaming. Not LoL & however some video game company balances it's game.
40k =/= LoL.
Miniature Wargaming =/= video games.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 01:00:35


Post by: Canadian 5th


ccs wrote:
So he should stop talking about out-of-date MTG decks but you can continue talking about your out-of-date 40k experience....

You mean my playing games in 8th edition and not playing in 9th because we're locked down and my friends don't have time to game? That's really not that out of date compared to Caw-Blade which was a deck back in 2011.

BTW, this is about 40k & minis gaming. Not LoL & however some video game company balances it's game.
40k =/= LoL.
Miniature Wargaming =/= video games.

Games are games. Balance is balance. Both require math and logical rules which come together to create a specific outcome based on what the people playing the game do within the bounds of the game's logic.

40k would be no different in terms of rules and balance if it were to be played in VR without any physical pieces at all. Technically you could play it with pure math and involve only your mind and some paper to do calculations on but the juice isn't worth that much squeezing.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 01:08:30


Post by: Racerguy180


What does MTG, LOL, etc have to do with 40k?

Last time I checked 40k is neither(thank fething god).
Both are horrible games. I would rather hang out with Sisyphus and help him out with his boulder than play either.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 01:10:26


Post by: Slayer-Fan123


Racerguy180 wrote:
What does MTG, LOL, etc have to do with 40k?

Last time I checked 40k is neither(thank fething god).
Both are horrible games. I would rather hang out with Sisyphus and help him out with his boulder than play either.

How are THOSE horrible games compared to 40k? You can even objectively defend them as better, especially for the price point.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 01:12:08


Post by: Canadian 5th


Racerguy180 wrote:
What does MTG, LOL, etc have to do with 40k?

Last time I checked 40k is neither(thank fething god).
Both are horrible games. I would rather hang out with Sisyphus and help him out with his boulder than play either.

How does any of this impact the fact that the mechanical balance of a game is purely a product of logic and thus can be discussed in abstract terms using comparables from other genres?

Slayer-Fan123 wrote:
Racerguy180 wrote:
What does MTG, LOL, etc have to do with 40k?

Last time I checked 40k is neither(thank fething god).
Both are horrible games. I would rather hang out with Sisyphus and help him out with his boulder than play either.

How are THOSE horrible games compared to 40k? You can even objectively defend them as better, especially for the price point.

The irony is that if he hates LoL his issue with it is probably the balance as you should expect a 50-50 win rate once you're properly rated as a player. For anybody who can't handle losing that must feel awful.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 01:25:06


Post by: Tycho


You're really bad at reading clauses. You should probably avoid games like MtG and YGO because the placement of a comma in those games can change an entire card. What I said with that final sentence is that I played almost every army in 4th and 5th using proxied models. Nothing more and nothing less.




Show me the clause in that post? You never mentioned 8th. If you said it somewhere else fine, but you would think, in being asked "So ... you don't even play 40k?", you'd have at least said "Played a few games of 8th". Not that "a few games of 8th" has much to do with where we are in 9th but at any rate, you didn't mention it. And you originally said you couldn't actually get your group to play games like 40k, but now you don't play because of lockdown? I mean fair enough, that applies to most of us, but "I don't play because I can't get my group to play 40k (but I have played a few games) ≠ I haven't played recently due to lockdown. lol

Ok - sorry for the derail all. I'm done. I promise. Just wanted to call that out.

"ignore" activated. lol


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 01:26:52


Post by: Racerguy180


I've never played it, as I have no use for it. simple as that.

A fair amount of my friends do and everytime they show me the gameplay...it reinforces my decision. I get the appeal, its just unappealing to me.

Same for MTG/pokemon/any other CCG. I remember when Magic came out and my opinion of the game hasn't changed.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 01:37:28


Post by: Canadian 5th


Tycho wrote:
Show me the clause in that post?

That bit with the comma separating two clauses in a sentence. It's pretty clear.

You never mentioned 8th. If you said it somewhere else fine, but you would think, in being asked "So ... you don't even play 40k?", you'd have at least said "Played a few games of 8th". Not that "a few games of 8th" has much to do with where we are in 9th but at any rate, you didn't mention it.

A few games of 8th mean very little overall so I didn't care to mention them.

And you originally said you couldn't actually get your group to play games like 40k, but now you don't play because of lockdown? I mean fair enough, that applies to most of us, but "I don't play because I can't get my group to play 40k (but I have played a few games) ≠ I haven't played recently due to lockdown. lol

My group doesn't want to invest in 40k. I can't go to clubs because of lockdown, no contradiction at all.

Racerguy180 wrote:
I've never played it, as I have no use for it. simple as that.

A fair amount of my friends do and everytime they show me the gameplay...it reinforces my decision. I get the appeal, its just unappealing to me.

Same for MTG/pokemon/any other CCG. I remember when Magic came out and my opinion of the game hasn't changed.

So you're mocking games you have next to no knowledge of because you don't think they're relevant to 40k but you can't actually know that because you have nothing beyond a surface-level knowledge of them...


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 01:48:47


Post by: Racerguy180


If on a surface level(mechanically)they have zero appeal to me, why would I waste time hoping they would miraculously be better?
Does the game get better?
Do all of the things that I dislike change, the more you play?

Are either one of them a tabletop wargame with miniatures that you build, paint and then play with?
Can you go back and play with the original LOL stats? Can you play without some mechanic you don't like?

Something tells me no.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 01:52:17


Post by: Canadian 5th


Racerguy180 wrote:
If on a surface level(mechanically)they have zero appeal to me, why would I waste time hoping they would miraculously be better?
Does the game get better?
Do all of the things that I dislike change, the more you play?

Are either one of them a tabletop wargame with miniatures that you build, paint and then play with?
Can you go back and play with the original LOL stats? Can you play without some mechanic you don't like?

Something tells me no.

What does any of this have to do with game balance?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 01:59:35


Post by: Racerguy180


 Canadian 5th wrote:
Racerguy180 wrote:
If on a surface level(mechanically)they have zero appeal to me, why would I waste time hoping they would miraculously be better?
Does the game get better?
Do all of the things that I dislike change, the more you play?

Are either one of them a tabletop wargame with miniatures that you build, paint and then play with?
Can you go back and play with the original LOL stats? Can you play without some mechanic you don't like?

Something tells me no.

What does any of this have to do with game balance?

Compare similar games then


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 02:02:40


Post by: Karol


But you don't have to compare similar games. You are comparing mechanics and their impact on stuff like win ratios or player retention.



Also I am rather confused on how building or painting models impacts the game balance at all. Specialy considering you don't need to paint the army to play the game.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 02:23:20


Post by: Canadian 5th


Karol wrote:
But you don't have to compare similar games. You are comparing mechanics and their impact on stuff like win ratios or player retention.



Also I am rather confused on how building or painting models impacts the game balance at all. Specialy considering you don't need to paint the army to play the game.

Thanks, Karol, we don't always agree but you nailed it here.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 02:35:20


Post by: Tycho


But you don't have to compare similar games. You are comparing mechanics and their impact on stuff like win ratios or player retention.



Also I am rather confused on how building or painting models impacts the game balance at all. Specialy considering you don't need to paint the army to play the game


I didn’t see where anyone said the thing about building or painting but if someone did say that then you are correct.

The issue with comparing “similar mechanics” is that you at least want to compare how a mechanic works, for example, in another war game. Nothing really works in a 40k vs video game comparison, and as far as ccgs go, despite what some would have you think, 40k is still very far away from a ccg. The context within which, a mechanic lives, is very important to how it works and its relative affect on the game it governs. That’s why it’s important to at least try to compare similar games.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 02:38:13


Post by: Blastaar


MTG is a FAR better, more tactical game than 40k has ever been. While I dislike much of the modern design philosophy, the game is still fun (which 40k as not been for me since mid-7th) and the rules are the clearest I've ever encountered. It would be amazing if GW studied their process and replicated it.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 02:40:01


Post by: Karol


If something has 60% win ratio, and something else has under 40%, then it doesn't matter what it is. It is always a sign of something being wrong. could be comparing long distance running to 100 dash, and the comparation would work.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 02:43:30


Post by: Canadian 5th


Tycho wrote:
But you don't have to compare similar games. You are comparing mechanics and their impact on stuff like win ratios or player retention.



Also I am rather confused on how building or painting models impacts the game balance at all. Specialy considering you don't need to paint the army to play the game


I didn’t see where anyone said the thing about building or painting but if someone did say that then you are correct.

The issue with comparing “similar mechanics” is that you at least want to compare how a mechanic works, for example, in another war game. Nothing really works in a 40k vs video game comparison, and as far as ccgs go, despite what some would have you think, 40k is still very far away from a ccg. The context within which, a mechanic lives, is very important to how it works and its relative affect on the game it governs. That’s why it’s important to at least try to compare similar games.


Racerguy180 wrote:Are either one of them a tabletop wargame with miniatures that you build, paint and then play with?
Can you go back and play with the original LOL stats? Can you play without some mechanic you don't like?

This looks like one to me.

As for the debate around mechanics, I'm going to define it clearly.

All games by definition must be logically solvable. All games that have any form of asymmetry, even as minor as who plays first, will have some form of imbalance. How different games deal with their levels of imbalance is therefore completely within the scope of a balance discussion.

This is exactly how I've used LoL and MtG, as examples of how other games deal with imbalance and why different games have to approach balance differently. I've also used LoL as a means of demonstrating that perfect balance my, in fact, not be the most desirable level of balance for the players. Do you dispute that these points relate to 40k?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 02:57:01


Post by: Karol


Well GW ways of dealing with an army being bad is to make people buy a good army. And dealing with a good army goes along the lines, why are you asking for stuff if your army is good and if you want a good army play the play a good one, instead of your bad one.

And it can go on for years. Because GW makes big core changes to armies, if they are puting out a new codex, and they don't work the same amount of time on all books clearly from the boks qualities, and if there are new model lines coming out.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 06:21:21


Post by: Zande4


 kirotheavenger wrote:
I often regret selling models, but then I remember why I sold them in the first place.
I don't have the space to keep them. Lord knows I don't have enough space to keep the models I'm currently using.
Additionally, I wouldn't want to use the models anyway. They're from a time where I was much worse at building and painting than I am now, I don't like what I did anymore.


I just sold 6k of Eldar, 3k of Chaos and 7k of Dark Angels and it was just a weight off my mind.

I have so much to paint still and I was honestly never going to finish it all. I've only painted about 35% of my 20k of Nids.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 06:54:43


Post by: aphyon


This is exactly how I've used LoL and MtG, as examples of how other games deal with imbalance and why different games have to approach balance differently. I've also used LoL as a means of demonstrating that perfect balance my, in fact, not be the most desirable level of balance for the players. Do you dispute that these points relate to 40k?


The MTG reference is applicable now more than ever since GW has adopted a similar resource mechanic system to drive the game in 9th edition even more so than it did in 8th.

The main problem with the type of balance these players are looking for is no longer possible with 40K because the line has literally gotten to large to allow it. to many factions with to many units with to many special rules.
At least the old USRs kind of kept everybody on the same page.


As i stated in an earlier post back between 2nd-4th edition the core of the game was focused on lore driven rules/restrictions more than equalizing factions against each other. as they all had built in flaws and strengths that you as a player had to exploit on the table.

A better comparison of balance can be seen in other things Andy Chambers has worked on over the years after leaving GW. his rules for DUST warfare/1947 (the miniature rules not the board game rules) are incredibly balanced with every unit having a hard counter in game and with only 4 main factions and each faction limited to a single special weapon type different from all the other factions. it is very easy to have a balanced game where certain armies don't overpower others no matter how new they are when you limited the scope of the game a little (it is still really big in unit options, but not to the extent GW has gone with 40K )


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 07:29:26


Post by: Hecaton


 Canadian 5th wrote:
If there was a style of army in 40k that could either table you by turn 2 or flame out spectacularly most players probably wouldn't want that army to be good. That's assassin's in LoL, they either snowball and carry or lose and contribute nothing.


...a lot of games of 40k are decided by turn 2 anyway. Your point isn't really relevant.

 Canadian 5th wrote:

Caw Blade? My man, that's a deck older than my last game of 40k. Maybe you should stop talking about MtG if that's the most modern deck you can name.


Irrelevant. I know plenty of newer decks; I picked caw blade because of a trait it has. Do you know what it is? It's really easy if you understand the context.

 Canadian 5th wrote:

You seem to be ignorant of the fact that there have been many armchair quarterbacks picked up as video scouts and analysts in recent years...


But what percentage of armchair quarterbacks make good video scouts? I think it's probably a vanishingly small amount. You never really knocked down my point.

 Canadian 5th wrote:

You have to prove that it has intentionally bad balance as a core gameplay element to draw players into their next match.


It's not to draw people into their next match, it's to make them spend money. Here's a good video on the subject: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dPHPNgIihR0


 Canadian 5th wrote:
That's where battle reports and tournament writeups come into the equation. I can probably analyze more games in my free time than somebody who plays does because I can spend that three hours watching a couple of games while you get in merely one.


If you were any good to begin with you'd understand that there's no substitute for actual practice.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 11:50:24


Post by: Slipspace


 aphyon wrote:
This is exactly how I've used LoL and MtG, as examples of how other games deal with imbalance and why different games have to approach balance differently. I've also used LoL as a means of demonstrating that perfect balance my, in fact, not be the most desirable level of balance for the players. Do you dispute that these points relate to 40k?


The MTG reference is applicable now more than ever since GW has adopted a similar resource mechanic system to drive the game in 9th edition even more so than it did in 8th.


I think that's the exact reason the comparison doesn't work at all. Yes, 40k incorporates a lot of CCG mechanics into its games now with the wombo-combo stratagem system. The key difference is that 40k is like playing a game with almost all the resources always available - they've completely missed the crucial elements that allow you to balance a CCG. It's the resource mechanic that attempts to balance CCGs by restricting what mana and which cards you have available at any given time. 40k's biggest problem is it doesn't do that effectively. I always have access to all my stratagems (cards) and I have a predefined pool of CPs (mana) that I'm completely in control of managing too.

If these mechanics more closely followed how CCGs work they might be more interesting.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 12:41:46


Post by: Jidmah


Oh, we are at the "40k is the only game in the universe that can't be balanced" discussion again.

You're wrong. Every game can be balanced with sufficient effort. Especially since 40k is vastly less complex than both MtG and LoL.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 13:05:35


Post by: addnid


 Jidmah wrote:
Oh, we are at the "40k is the only game in the universe that can't be balanced" discussion again.

You're wrong. Every game can be balanced with sufficient effort. Especially since 40k is vastly less complex than both MtG and LoL.


Is MtG more complex though ? Depends on the format I'd say. Standard MtG (the format with the lowest number of cards to choose from) is IMHO less complex than 40k. I also play Pioneer format (an "eternal" format, whereas Standard is a "revolving" format), and perhaps that is indeed more complex than 40k (soooo many cards have been produced in all those editons, it is a nightmare to try to anticipate what you I would face when I used to head out for a small tournament). Never tried LoL.

At any rate GW could really benefit from the methods of people at MtG (except from the people who have been in charge of green-blue cards in recent editions, these dudes need to go back to balancing school), who are decades ahead in terms of competence


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 13:22:03


Post by: Karol


Slipspace 795143 11027264 wrote:
I think that's the exact reason the comparison doesn't work at all. Yes, 40k incorporates a lot of CCG mechanics into its games now with the wombo-combo stratagem system. The key difference is that 40k is like playing a game with almost all the resources always available - they've completely missed the crucial elements that allow you to balance a CCG.
If these mechanics more closely followed how CCGs work they might be more interesting.


But the mechanics themselfs don't matter. It is just like with sports, it doesn't matter what the sport is about, but if you want to check if something is wrong with it, you check who is winning and how often. If it is expected for multiple armies to play with the same rule set, and the rule set does not matter as long as it is the same one, then if you get something like harlis and tau from 9th in it at the same time, then something was done wrong with the rules. Same way as it is with ccg. If Wizards makes Oko and suddenly 80% of decks run him, to a point where even anti Oko decks run Oko, then clearly some balance problem is at hand. The style of the mechanics, its number, its kind do not matter. Only thing that matters is checking if the game is able to produce results close to a 50/50 split for most armies. Then you can check stuff like going first, pre change, impacting the game a lot or specific match ups.


And GW has all the power to change and switch any mechanics they want, just like they have the option to test rules, or even whole games, in and outside of house. They do not do it though. What ever can be said about Wizards and Hasbro, at least their reaction time is much faster then that of GW, if they really drop the ball. When Inari or Castellan builds were wrecking 8th ed, both were left without any serious changes for close to a year, and the change was not a fix, but a nerf so hard that since then we don't really see people playing with either. Same with loyal 32, and I assume a lot of things in prior editions.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 13:33:49


Post by: Tyel


I feel bringing in MTG just raises the question of "what is balance".

The desire in 40k (I think anyway) is that two people can bring armies, and each have roughly 50/50 chance to win. This is why discussions that tend towards more rock/paper/scissors are unpopular. People don't want a game that takes 3~ hours where you know one side is almost certain to win because they brought tanks and their opponent brought all the anti-tank. They want a 50/50 - or at least near as.

You might then upgrade it to "each have a 50/50 chance to win, allowing for player skill" (exactly how you quantify it being unclear but recognising experience applies to just about all games and so must apply to 40k).

Certainly the idea two people can turn up with random cards in MTG and have a 50/50 chance to win that game is false. Skill and decision making is undoubtedly a factor - but there is also just what you have in your deck, and the order that it happens to be piled up in front of you.

So I'm not sure what people mean by when they say its "balanced". I think the idea is that even though you can bring the most filthy aggo deck in the game, and crush loads of people, there are plenty of decks *other* people could bring that would stack the odds in their favour against you. Saying "I play Red/Blue, bring me your tears" isn't the same as "I play [top list] of [top faction]" in 40k, to which there likely is no hard counter at all.

In the same spirit of League - if its balanced, why are there lists of bad champions to avoid (and good ones to play)? I feel in League characters can more easily be tweaked due to the vast amount of information compared with 40k. If you assume most people are past their improvement cycle, you can easily track their performance with one character and another. You can then see relatively clearly if people are getting better results with A rather than B.

Whereas that doesn't happen in 40k - due to time and money commitments. It would be great if we could somehow study what happens when you take multiple people who are say losing 60-70%+ of their games and give them whatever people think is the best list in the game for 10-20 games.

But yes. 40k can be balanced. All of the 8th edition CAs moved things in the right direction. I think this latest free update does so too. Some people would just like GW to move things a bit faster, and perhaps show their workings/thinking so they seemingly *learn* from past errors.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 13:38:49


Post by: Slipspace


Karol wrote:
Slipspace 795143 11027264 wrote:
I think that's the exact reason the comparison doesn't work at all. Yes, 40k incorporates a lot of CCG mechanics into its games now with the wombo-combo stratagem system. The key difference is that 40k is like playing a game with almost all the resources always available - they've completely missed the crucial elements that allow you to balance a CCG.
If these mechanics more closely followed how CCGs work they might be more interesting.


But the mechanics themselfs don't matter. It is just like with sports, it doesn't matter what the sport is about, but if you want to check if something is wrong with it, you check who is winning and how often.


That tells you if something is winning a lot, not why. Without knowing why you can't ever hope to achieve balance. My comment was directly talking about how the difference in mechanics between CCGs and 40k make balance more difficult in the latter. So mechanics do matter, because those are the things you use and the things you change to create balance.


Automatically Appended Next Post:
Tyel wrote:


So I'm not sure what people mean by when they say its "balanced". I think the idea is that even though you can bring the most filthy aggo deck in the game, and crush loads of people, there are plenty of decks *other* people could bring that would stack the odds in their favour against you. Saying "I play Red/Blue, bring me your tears" isn't the same as "I play [top list] of [top faction]" in 40k, to which there likely is no hard counter at all.


To stick with the MTG theme, I think Mark Rosewater's 20 tenets of good game design give a good indication. Translating a little for 40k, in a balanced game you want players who take thematically "correct" armies to be able to do well and you want the route to victory to be fun, whatever that means in context. I think the former part is where 40k falls down a lot and causes a lot of problems. Nobody likes being told they wasted their money because the faction they chose is bad, or the units they bought are terrible. I think what balance should mean is taking a relatively typical army for your chosen faction should give you a decent chance to win against someone of equal skill. Further, I don't think any units should be completely useless to the point of being a waste of money. All units should have some purpose in certain kinds of list.

The problem with that is GW often makes business decisions that affect game balance. The large number of SM untis that perform the same role is a good example. It's hard for every unit to effectively fill a niche when there are 3 or 4 other units all trying to fill the same niche.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 13:48:12


Post by: Jidmah


A constructed format is considered balanced (or healthy) when there are 3-4 distinct top decks with a few second tier decks, which all have reasonable chance of winning. A badly balanced constructed environment is when one or two decks and their direct counters dominate the meta. With every release, they have to take care that standard format remains healthy, while also not fething up any of the eternal or long-lived formats.

At the same time, they also have to balance the same cards for drafting, which requires no color to be significantly stronger than any other, and every color to make sense drafting at least as a support to another. In some sets they also have to balance color pairs or triplets.

WotC has repeatedly seen that sales are directly connected to the balance of drafting and tournament formats - both combo winter and raffinity almost killed the game. Whenever they mess up their balance, they lose money.


Automatically Appended Next Post:
Slipspace wrote:
That tells you if something is winning a lot, not why. Without knowing why you can't ever hope to achieve balance. My comment was directly talking about how the difference in mechanics between CCGs and 40k make balance more difficult in the latter. So mechanics do matter, because those are the things you use and the things you change to create balance.


In my opinion, GW is making most of this harder for themselves than necessary. They have so many more tools to tweak unit than WotC has to tweak a card. If WotC needs to balance something like the Oko example Karol gave post mortem, their only option is to banhammer it and print a weaker version later, because they have printed millions of cards and spread them across the globe.

GW isn't really limited outside of the physical models, so while you can't suddenly give eradicator bolters, there is some wiggle space, like inventing new wargear for stuff already found on models (see DG releases).

However, they could easily change the whole statline up and down, change weapon profiles, add, change or remove bespoke rules and stratagems, add detachment or army-wide rules and even add or remove keywords like CORE. There are so many ways to fine-tune units, and yet the only way we ever see is points, and some things simply can't be fixed with points.
Honestly, 9th's editions codices feel like the first time they have ever been using their whole toolbox to update armies.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 14:07:09


Post by: Unit1126PLL


It's honestly stunning to see people assert that 40k cannot ever possibly be balanced.

It's not a learning AI algorithm, or something. It's not beyond human comprehension. Humans built it and continue to build it. It's utterly 100% transparent - or, if it's not, it could be if the designers chose to make it so.

Watching people talk about 40k is just weird. Like people standing in front of a ruined building and going:
"This building cannot be repaired; such architecture is a lost art and arcane beyond reason." literally while the guy who designed and built the building is standing in the same room whistling to himself while building other, better buildings.

40k is the product of human minds, not an independently growing algorithm nor a living thing. We don't have to do scientific tests on it to break it down to its components in some kind of physics lab before understanding it like it were some kind of mysterious phenomenon.

Humans build it. Humans could build it better, but chose not to for any number of possible reasons. That's why 40k is the way it is. Not because it's some inscrutable, unfathomable eldritch horror beyond such mundane concerns as "balance".


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 14:13:30


Post by: Nurglitch


A suggestion I had before was that GW include army lists as part of the officially supported tournament pack, so that players just needed to bring the models. Make 2-3 options for players to account for 'play-style' and tweak as necessary like they do with the points and FAQs.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 14:14:22


Post by: Tycho


It's honestly stunning to see people assert that 40k cannot ever possibly be balanced.


Yeah, I don't get that either. Plus, if it's that bad, why are those people still here? lol

We've seen plenty of times where 40k, for short periods of time actually was balanced. I really don't get the sentiment that it's not possible.

A suggestion I had before was that GW include army lists as part of the officially supported tournament pack, so that players just needed to bring the models. Make 2-3 options for players to account for 'play-style' and tweak as necessary like they do with the points and FAQs.



I think this defeats the purpose of collecting models for a lot of people, and GW themselves would probably tell you that this approach would limit sales more than they would want. Also, pretty sure the community would riot.

That being said, and given the large disconnect we know exists between the rules writers and the people who actually play the game, I'd be very interested to see what they came up with.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 14:38:41


Post by: TangoTwoBravo


Nurglitch wrote:
A suggestion I had before was that GW include army lists as part of the officially supported tournament pack, so that players just needed to bring the models. Make 2-3 options for players to account for 'play-style' and tweak as necessary like they do with the points and FAQs.


I can understand having restrictions as part of a tournament pack (no FW, no named characters etc), but fixed lists would be something I would stay away from. This speaks to something that makes 40K difficult to balance - the players have choice regarding what they bring.

I played Advanced Squad Leader (ASL) and Debellis Antiquitatis (DBA) in the 90s. As a scenario-based board game, ASL could achieve balance in each scenario. The scenario designer set all the mission parameters. There was no such thing as an "over-powered" unit (although there were OPs) since the effect of each piece meshed into the scenario design. The players rarely (if ever) had any choice in their force composition. DBA, an Ancients minis game, had many fixed lists and a fairly small number of unit types that were shared by all lists. So the player could choose to play Alexandrian Macedonians but had no choice about what units to take as part of that list (although you could swap out some units in some lists). The designers could, therefore, have more control over balance.

List building has been a core element of 40K as long as I have been playing (2nd Ed). The relative freedom to bring your choice of models within varying levels of contraint/restraint is part of 40K's success as a miniatures game. People like having choice. They like thinking for days and weeks about their list before a tournament. This makes balance hard, since the designers have more variables to contend with. Reducing choice could, in theory, increase balance. Its not an either/or, but I would not sacrifice armies or units at this point to achieve "balance." This doesn't mean that balance is unachievable, but we need to be realistic.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 14:49:55


Post by: Canadian 5th


 Jidmah wrote:
Oh, we are at the "40k is the only game in the universe that can't be balanced" discussion again.

You're wrong. Every game can be balanced with sufficient effort. Especially since 40k is vastly less complex than both MtG and LoL.

LoL is vastly less complex than even 40k while collecting vastly more data about each game played which includes player skill for all 10 players in each game. The stuff that would make LoL complex, like the exact position of a champion and the exact moment an ability is used, is abstracted out and analyzed based on gold differences at set times (both team v team and champion v champion), kill differentials, first blood, first turret plate, and first blood timing, jungle clear and first gank times, and other discrete moments significant to the game state.

 Jidmah wrote:
https://arstechnica.com/science/2019/06/its-possible-to-build-a-turing-machine-within-magic-the-gathering/


Yes, but that machine has nothing to do with the state of the game. The machine itself is trivial to disrupt if you were to play against it and that level of complexity is only achieved in certain eternal formats.

Of course, it is neat that a game as complex as MtG has balance as close as it does even if MtG players while always whine about it. We could always have a game like YGO instead.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 15:06:04


Post by: addnid


Nurglitch wrote:
A suggestion I had before was that GW include army lists as part of the officially supported tournament pack, so that players just needed to bring the models. Make 2-3 options for players to account for 'play-style' and tweak as necessary like they do with the points and FAQs.


I honestly think many (me included) would stop playing if the listbuilding was terminated this way. Choosing from "official tournament lists" would take 40% of the flavor out of the game lol. But perhaps some people don't like the list building part of 40k ?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 16:03:16


Post by: Semper


What do you mean by balance? That every faction should have the same chance to defeat any other faction regardless of combination used? I would think this unreasonable to achieve in a living game (I am sure a programmed AI/machine could balance such a scenario...)

Personally, no. I don't overly covet or expect balance. As with life, there should be varying levels of difficulty and factions that are better against others. At the same time, factions that are harder to play should be more rewarding, perhaps more nuanced/accurate to the fluff. I'm also not advocating that the imbalances should be hilariously one sided but I think there needs to be a little more Rock, Paper, Scissors going on.

There should be clearer counters and drawbacks to certain benefits rather than just the usual brute force approach and a point tweak. IE, if Daemons are meant to be tough and nearly impervious to mortal weapons but weaker to psychic attacks, then they should be bloody tough and nearly impervious to mortal weapons and weaker to psychic attacks! This is why psykers and GK are around, why we have mortal wounds and why invulnerable saves exist that are better than a 5+! I appreciate this has to be done with some moderation but I think that, all too often, accuracy to the fluff is sacrificed for sales and a degree of balance that can be achieved without overlooking the fluff to such a length.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 17:35:45


Post by: Nurglitch


 addnid wrote:
Nurglitch wrote:
A suggestion I had before was that GW include army lists as part of the officially supported tournament pack, so that players just needed to bring the models. Make 2-3 options for players to account for 'play-style' and tweak as necessary like they do with the points and FAQs.


I honestly think many (me included) would stop playing if the listbuilding was terminated this way. Choosing from "official tournament lists" would take 40% of the flavor out of the game lol. But perhaps some people don't like the list building part of 40k ?

I love list-building so much I built it into my Titanomachina game, but where the armies themselves are badly balanced internally, with a few must-have units and so much dross, all the competitive lists end up looking the same anyways. More to the point, there's no reason why a fixed-list format can't co-exist with an open or freestyle format, just as events run Narrative Play campaigns alongside competitive tournaments.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 18:02:43


Post by: Tycho


What do you mean by balance? That every faction should have the same chance to defeat any other faction regardless of combination used? I would think this unreasonable to achieve in a living game (I am sure a programmed AI/machine could balance such a scenario...)


I think everyone is generally ok with some asymmetry. No one expects the mythical "perfect balance". Generally it's more, is there a super faction that has become auto-win to the point that you don't even have to play the game? Are some factions almost auto-lose no matter what they do? etc.

So for me at least, it's not so much "everyone has a equal chance to win", and more, are the various factions getting generally even support, is everything structured so that there aren't any factions that are just straight fethed by either the core rules, or by their own codex rules (or possibly the rules of another codex - i.e. 5th ed Grey Knights being able to defeat Demons by preventing them from ever actually deploying in the first place).

If we look at it like this:

on a 1-5 rating with 1 being as bad as it can be, 3 being average and 5 being almost perfect:

Are the various factions getting generally even support?
No. Not even remotely close. I would give this a 1.

Are there any super factions that are pretty much auto-win?
Probably inconclusive at this point post the new Marine dex, but I would say this is getting better than it was. The new Marine dex still has problems, but it fixed a lot of the issues 2.0 caused. Harleys are tough, but have a very high skill floor, so it's probably ok? I would say this is tentatively a 3 barring much useful data thanks to the pandemic, although you might be able to argue for a better score.

Are there any factions that are nearly auto-lose?
Yep. Way too many. I would score this a conditional 2. Conditional because 9th really borked a handful of codexes. This is to be expected to a point, and can, to an extent be forgiven as it's usually a temporary condition. Given how much of the design space was given over to other places, most of the Xenos dexes would not be out yet under the best of circumstances, but the pandemic makes this much worse. I would cut more slack here than I did, but when the very core rules seem to target the makeup of your army, as well as the way those same writers intended your army to function, I worry that the new codexes aren't going to help those armies all that much. They are in a spot where they need to either make significant changes to the core rules (I'm counting the mission packets as part of "core rules" here), or make changes to the very nature of those armies. Both approaches are going to cause issues but that's where we are.





Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 18:25:13


Post by: Canadian 5th


I'm going to show an example of a Guard list that should illustrate the balance issue rather well:

Battalion:

HQ:
Company Commander w/ Bolt Gun - 37 pts.
Lord Commissar w/ Bolt Gun - 37 pts.

Troops:
Infantry Squad w/ Lascannon HWT and Vox - 75 pts.
Infantry Squad w/ Lascannon HWT and Vox - 75 pts.
Infantry Squad w/ Lascannon HWT and Vox - 75 pts.

Elites:
Master of Ordnance - 35 pts.
Command Squad w/ Medi-pack, Vox, and Regimental Standard - 40 pts.
Tech-Priest Enginseer - 35 pts.

Fliers:
Valkyrie w/ Multilaser, 2x Heavy Bolters, Multiple Rocket Pod - 145 pts.
Valkyrie w/ Multilaser, 2x Heavy Bolters, Multiple Rocket Pod - 145 pts.
Valkyrie w/ Multilaser, 2x Heavy Bolters, Multiple Rocket Pod - 145 pts.

Fast Attack:
Scout Sentinels x3 w/ Autocannons - 135 pts.
Scout Sentinels x3 w/ Autocannons - 135 pts.
Armoured Sentinels x3 w/ Plasma Cannons - 150 pts.

Heavy Support:
Hydra Battery w/ 3 guns - 240 pts.
Hydra Battery w/ 3 guns - 240 pts.
Rapier laser Destroyer Battery w/ 3 guns- 255 pts.

I didn't bother with relics or regimental special rules because they wouldn't fix this mess. My fluff idea is that this is a rear area defence force assigned to an airfield. The elites are that base's command staff/specialists and the Valkyries are the few fliers that were caught refueling when the airfield was attacked. This force has to be balanced so that it's roughly equal to ANY other force it could face while not being overpowered against anything.

How do we propose to fix this one single list so it can meet these goals?


The issue is what will appease you won't appease other people in this same thread who want closer than a 45-55 spread of win rates in casual players between the best and worst lists in the game. There will always be a next level to any fix we can make and to the fix after that. Just look at the new FAQ which is a clear attempt at fixing mission balance and the mixed response this forum is giving it for proof of that.

So how do we balance the balance that everybody says they want with what is possible and with what meets GW's sales goals?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 18:51:46


Post by: Slayer-Fan123


 Canadian 5th wrote:
 Jidmah wrote:
Oh, we are at the "40k is the only game in the universe that can't be balanced" discussion again.

You're wrong. Every game can be balanced with sufficient effort. Especially since 40k is vastly less complex than both MtG and LoL.

LoL is vastly less complex than even 40k while collecting vastly more data about each game played which includes player skill for all 10 players in each game. The stuff that would make LoL complex, like the exact position of a champion and the exact moment an ability is used, is abstracted out and analyzed based on gold differences at set times (both team v team and champion v champion), kill differentials, first blood, first turret plate, and first blood timing, jungle clear and first gank times, and other discrete moments significant to the game state.

 Jidmah wrote:
https://arstechnica.com/science/2019/06/its-possible-to-build-a-turing-machine-within-magic-the-gathering/


Yes, but that machine has nothing to do with the state of the game. The machine itself is trivial to disrupt if you were to play against it and that level of complexity is only achieved in certain eternal formats.

Of course, it is neat that a game as complex as MtG has balance as close as it does even if MtG players while always whine about it. We could always have a game like YGO instead.

Yeah Yugioh got REALLY bad, especially before I quit when they introduced Pendulum Summoning or whatever that garbage was. I didn't get it, it didn't click, so...I left. The worst format was the Elemental Dragons and Spellbook format. Pretty cancerous there all around, and literally the only deck that was capable of standing up was Evilswarm, which didn't exactly fair well either. Once your dude that you went for ASAP died (I forget the name but he stopped special summoning of LV5 or higher monsters) you basically lost.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 19:02:09


Post by: kirotheavenger


I'd say that list has too few anti-tank weapons to be a "proper" list.
So to make it balanced you should be expected to swap a Valkyrie for a Vendetta or something, then it can be balanced from there.
That's the sort of thing I mean.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 20:01:34


Post by: Canadian 5th


 kirotheavenger wrote:
I'd say that list has too few anti-tank weapons to be a "proper" list.
So to make it balanced you should be expected to swap a Valkyrie for a Vendetta or something, then it can be balanced from there.
That's the sort of thing I mean.

But why does every list need x anti-tank, y anti-horde, z anti-PEQ, etc. If the game is supposed to be balanced should any list have a fairly equal chance against any other list? I know this is a bit smarmy and rhetorical but I've brought up the example of a list with now weapon with a strength higher than 5 versus an all T7+ list and gotten responses like:

"Like I said above, few are arguing that list building should have zero impact on winning, the argument is more that you should be able to build a list that doesn't put you at an automatic disadvantage due to trap choices.

In your example, depending on the mission I could easily see the win rate swing one way or another - in a heavily cluttered urban area where the big vehicles cannot really put their power to bear the mechanized list could be at a disadvantage for taking hold of objectives and taking out an entrenched force, meanwhile in a low terrain map with little cover, the mech list could just pick off the infantry list at its leisure and stroll up to objectives to hold them.

Ie: people are arguing that terrain, mission objectives, and your strategy vs your opponent's strategy should count for more than list building."

So I think it's fair to consider that some people do expect answers to make even the worst mismatches close to balanced.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 20:02:27


Post by: Jidmah


 Canadian 5th wrote:
 Jidmah wrote:
Oh, we are at the "40k is the only game in the universe that can't be balanced" discussion again.

You're wrong. Every game can be balanced with sufficient effort. Especially since 40k is vastly less complex than both MtG and LoL.

LoL is vastly less complex than even 40k while collecting vastly more data about each game played which includes player skill for all 10 players in each game. The stuff that would make LoL complex, like the exact position of a champion and the exact moment an ability is used, is abstracted out and analyzed based on gold differences at set times (both team v team and champion v champion), kill differentials, first blood, first turret plate, and first blood timing, jungle clear and first gank times, and other discrete moments significant to the game state.

What the data is abstracted to doesn't really matter, everything that affects the game adds to complexity. The game itself is much more complex, if just for the fact that vastly more things can happen over the course of a game than in 5 turns of 40k.

Think of it this way: Imagine how many lines of text it would take to specify LoL in a way to make it playable as a board games in the exact same way as it is played now. That's its complexity, and 7th edition's fully bloated final form would be a joke compared to that.

 Canadian 5th wrote:
 Jidmah wrote:
https://arstechnica.com/science/2019/06/its-possible-to-build-a-turing-machine-within-magic-the-gathering/


Yes, but that machine has nothing to do with the state of the game. The machine itself is trivial to disrupt if you were to play against it and that level of complexity is only achieved in certain eternal formats.

Of course, it is neat that a game as complex as MtG has balance as close as it does even if MtG players while always whine about it. We could always have a game like YGO instead.

I think you need to google what a turing machine is.

Being able to build a turing machine out of it proves that the game is turing complete - which in turn means that the game states of MtG are exactly as complex as a modern programming language such as java, C#, python or javascript.
You could literally use MtG to write software without violating any of its rules, assuming some insane person builds a compiler for it.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 20:07:58


Post by: kirotheavenger


Because if absolutely every possible list is equally balanced, you can't have a game with any sort of variation at all.

IMO the game should require a basic level of balanced list building.
In that state the game should be balanced.
Skewing your list any way will result in a decrease in list effectiveness.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 20:13:50


Post by: Jidmah


 Canadian 5th wrote:
 kirotheavenger wrote:
I'd say that list has too few anti-tank weapons to be a "proper" list.
So to make it balanced you should be expected to swap a Valkyrie for a Vendetta or something, then it can be balanced from there.
That's the sort of thing I mean.

But why does every list need x anti-tank, y anti-horde, z anti-PEQ, etc. If the game is supposed to be balanced should any list have a fairly equal chance against any other list? I know this is a bit smarmy and rhetorical but I've brought up the example of a list with now weapon with a strength higher than 5 versus an all T7+ list and gotten responses like


That's not what balance is, that's just a luck based game then. In MtG you still need to build a deck with a proper mana curve, sufficient lands and the right mix of creatures and spells in order to win, and a league team also needs certain positions to be filled to have a shot at winning.

If your airfield has insufficient anti-tank weapons, the dreadmob knocking on your door has every right to stomp all over you.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 20:35:45


Post by: jeff white


Game balance and take all comers are two different things.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 20:41:49


Post by: Canadian 5th


 Jidmah wrote:
What the data is abstracted to doesn't really matter, everything that affects the game adds to complexity. The game itself is much more complex, if just for the fact that vastly more things can happen over the course of a game than in 5 turns of 40k.

Think of it this way: Imagine how many lines of text it would take to specify LoL in a way to make it playable as a board games in the exact same way as it is played now. That's its complexity, and 7th edition's fully bloated final form would be a joke compared to that.

Most of that code is for things like graphics, sound effects, matchmaking, lag reduction, etc. So cut away all of that and it would depend on how you wanted to play the game. Most actions would be quick, but tedious for a human to do, moving minions some distance along their path, moving your character x distance and then waiting until your turn to move them again. Even attacks would be as simple as select skill, check cooldown, check mana, aim skill. Then for anything other than a point and click skill you'd simply move it at set intervals and check if it hits or misses.

That's the thing with video games. Each action is simple and discrete, and most of them can be abstracted because they are essentially equivalent to another action you could have taken such as moving to pixel 101 instead of 102 and then to 104 instead of 103 while running to your lane at the start of a game. Given this, you can simply gather much more abstract data about the state of the game at specific points and go from there.

If you wanted a sample every 30 seconds things you might want to snapshot are champion health and mana. Champion gold, kills, assists, minions killed, and items held. Tower health. Champion proximity to the river. And other things. You don't care about the exact champion position on the map, if they're currently attacking something, or any of that specific data.

For 40k because the movement of models is a significant portion of each turn and effects which actions a player can take you'd want to record it if you were to make a balanced eSport out of it. Heck, you'd also want to log every die roll (including the order they were made, why they were roled, what the target was, etc.), every stratagem used, the exact position and coherency of a unit, etc. You'd have fewer batches of data but far more data in each batch.

I think you need to google what a turing machine is.

Being able to build a turing machine out of it proves that the game is turing complete - which in turn means that the game states of MtG are exactly as complex as a modern programming language such as java, C#, python or javascript.

I saw that video the day it came out and I know what a turing machine is. Just because it can be done doesn't mean that it's relevant to the game's balance any more than the ability to build a computer in Minecraft doesn't mean anything in terms of its adventure mode being too easy or hard.

--------

On the subject of just build a better list kappa; if that's the case then why does the 40k community start frothing at the mouth when skew is overperforming? We even have people saying that fielding an all PEQ and GrEQ list in marines is skew these days, should those players just git gud and build a list that has more 2 and 3 damage weapons in it or does that only come up when T8 models are involved?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 21:22:19


Post by: Slayer-Fan123


 jeff white wrote:
Game balance and take all comers are two different things.

Pretty much. Just because Imperial Guard and Tau aren't known for being melee monsters it doesn't mean Ogryn and Kroot should be garbage.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 21:22:27


Post by: Hecaton


 Canadian 5th wrote:
On the subject of just build a better list kappa; if that's the case then why does the 40k community start frothing at the mouth when skew is overperforming? We even have people saying that fielding an all PEQ and GrEQ list in marines is skew these days, should those players just git gud and build a list that has more 2 and 3 damage weapons in it or does that only come up when T8 models are involved?


It's because people don't want listbuilding to be a problem that's trivially solvable. It shouldn't be a matter of going through a codex and seeing "Oh, these are the units that are undercosted/exploit the rules" and just maxing those out and minimizing everything else. They want listbuilding to be *sophisticated*, they don't want it to be simply a matter of *complexity*.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 21:34:20


Post by: Canadian 5th


Hecaton wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:
On the subject of just build a better list kappa; if that's the case then why does the 40k community start frothing at the mouth when skew is overperforming? We even have people saying that fielding an all PEQ and GrEQ list in marines is skew these days, should those players just git gud and build a list that has more 2 and 3 damage weapons in it or does that only come up when T8 models are involved?


It's because people don't want listbuilding to be a problem that's trivially solvable. It shouldn't be a matter of going through a codex and seeing "Oh, these are the units that are undercosted/exploit the rules" and just maxing those out and minimizing everything else. They want listbuilding to be *sophisticated*, they don't want it to be simply a matter of *complexity*.

Not everybody wants that though. Some players want list building to have limited impact on your odds of victory and for only what happens on the table to have a significant impact on who wins. How would you square the game you want with the game they want?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 21:50:47


Post by: BertBert


 Canadian 5th wrote:
Hecaton wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:
On the subject of just build a better list kappa; if that's the case then why does the 40k community start frothing at the mouth when skew is overperforming? We even have people saying that fielding an all PEQ and GrEQ list in marines is skew these days, should those players just git gud and build a list that has more 2 and 3 damage weapons in it or does that only come up when T8 models are involved?


It's because people don't want listbuilding to be a problem that's trivially solvable. It shouldn't be a matter of going through a codex and seeing "Oh, these are the units that are undercosted/exploit the rules" and just maxing those out and minimizing everything else. They want listbuilding to be *sophisticated*, they don't want it to be simply a matter of *complexity*.

Not everybody wants that though. Some players want list building to have limited impact on your odds of victory and for only what happens on the table to have a significant impact on who wins. How would you square the game you want with the game they want?


I don't believe those are mutually exclusive. List building is trivial due to the lack of internal balance. If units are on a more level playing field internally, that doesn't necessarily translate into lists deciding games on the table. I'd even expect the exact opposite to be the case.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 21:58:16


Post by: Canadian 5th


 BertBert wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:
Hecaton wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:
On the subject of just build a better list kappa; if that's the case then why does the 40k community start frothing at the mouth when skew is overperforming? We even have people saying that fielding an all PEQ and GrEQ list in marines is skew these days, should those players just git gud and build a list that has more 2 and 3 damage weapons in it or does that only come up when T8 models are involved?


It's because people don't want listbuilding to be a problem that's trivially solvable. It shouldn't be a matter of going through a codex and seeing "Oh, these are the units that are undercosted/exploit the rules" and just maxing those out and minimizing everything else. They want listbuilding to be *sophisticated*, they don't want it to be simply a matter of *complexity*.

Not everybody wants that though. Some players want list building to have limited impact on your odds of victory and for only what happens on the table to have a significant impact on who wins. How would you square the game you want with the game they want?


I don't believe those are mutually exclusive. List building is trivial due to the lack of internal balance. If units are on a more level playing field internally, that doesn't necessarily translate into lists deciding games on the table. I'd even expect the exact opposite to be the case.

How does that fix the idea of skew lists? If skew is bad that punishes people for playing units they like and means Knights are going to stay bad forever if skew is good it makes list building to easy. How do you fix that so everybody is happy?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 22:00:01


Post by: Hecaton


 Canadian 5th wrote:

Not everybody wants that though. Some players want list building to have limited impact on your odds of victory and for only what happens on the table to have a significant impact on who wins. How would you square the game you want with the game they want?


It should 100% have limited impact on your odds of victory. That's not the same as zero or near-zero impact.

Listen, you come off like someone who doesn't really play and so does nothing but listbuild and theorycraft - and you want that to be the whole of the game.


Automatically Appended Next Post:
 Canadian 5th wrote:

How does that fix the idea of skew lists? If skew is bad that punishes people for playing units they like and means Knights are going to stay bad forever if skew is good it makes list building to easy. How do you fix that so everybody is happy?


It doesn't necessarily mean skew lists are punished. Going skew should be a meaningful choice - running a denial strategy, maximizing one aspect of your list while making big sacrifices elsewhere. It should not just be a matter of taking max amounts of whatever the best unit in the codex is.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 22:29:13


Post by: BertBert


 Canadian 5th wrote:

How does that fix the idea of skew lists? If skew is bad that punishes people for playing units they like and means Knights are going to stay bad forever if skew is good it makes list building to easy. How do you fix that so everybody is happy?


There is a lot of room between "forever bad" and "so good it makes list building trivial". Imo skew lists should generally be disadvantaged, though. If you heavily lean into one aspect of your army instead of bringing a well balanced force, that should be a risk and not a boon. That's not to say the risk cannot ever pay off, but that hinges on whether or not you correctly anticipated other contributing factors like missions, terrain and whatever you expect your opponent will bring to the table.

Also, if internal balance was to be improved, there would be less incentive for players to build skew lists in the first place. If you really love your tank brigade then you'll probably be fine with it having very clearly defined strengths and weaknesses.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 22:40:11


Post by: Karol


Okey, but this only works for armies with large number of units of different kinds, who actualy can make a choice if they want this or that unit.

A SoB player doesn't really have a choice in picking troop options or taking MM devastators.

Also don't think that just giving more unit types of different kind would stop people from playing skew lists. IF someone plays Deathwing or GK termintor armies, then just because GW adds another type of primaris psyker doesn't really change how the person will build his army. Same with knights, by definition they are a skew army. Now they probably shouldn't be in the game for its health, but now they already are and removing them would be a bad idea, specialy as it wouldn't give any garente that the rules set without knights would be better.

right now knights aren't that often seen, but the game is not better because of it.


Automatically Appended Next Post:
 BertBert wrote:


I don't believe those are mutually exclusive. List building is trivial due to the lack of internal balance. If units are on a more level playing field internally, that doesn't necessarily translate into lists deciding games on the table. I'd even expect the exact opposite to be the case.


But that is impossible to achive, because of how GW writers their core rules. A core rule regarding LoS or cover, or promoting a specific weapon as The Weapon to use in a given edition, can make whole chapters of a codex not valid to play.

Lets say we are in 10th, and GW drops down a rule which makes t3 +3sv models really bad. What is suppose a SoB player suppose to do, besides buying a new army?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 22:53:29


Post by: BertBert


Sure, and playing Deathwing or pure GK terminators should be an inherent risk due to their one-sidedness. Same goes for Knights, which is probably the biggest outlier army anyway.

And if we are talking how to fix balance issues, we have to at least assume the necessary competence on GW's part to produce a fitting framework. Ideally, there would be no such core rule that makes T3 3+ SV units inherently bad.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 23:10:04


Post by: Stormonu


40K's list building brings up an interesting point - how much of the game should be won by your ability to concoct the list pregame vs. your actions on the battlefield? Skill at list-building vs. Skill in play? How does that play into balance?

As I recall, in at least one of the older editions, GW codified a "strategy rating" for armies that was supposed to be an indicator of how difficult it was to use the army properly, and how forgiving it was to player mistakes (if I'm remembering this correctly).

I can see GW creating armies where there is a skill to putting together a list correctly; I used to associate this with Eldar where the units each had a specialty where they excelled, but in most other uses they were a poor fit. Conversely, marines were all-rounders, but not particularly great at any one thing. Marines were durable and could survive a player's mistake, whereas if the Eldar player made a mistake and pitted their units against the wrong enemy unit type or activity, his unit would likely get decimated.

Somewhere along the way, this degraded that people would just pick the "best" Eldar unit and spam it, and SM players moaned until their units were the best at everything, it seems. Balance at the list-making level went out the window.

This is difficult to express in words, but:

I don't think I'd mind the listbuilding metagame if I knew that certain armies were more difficult to use effectively that others before I dumped a couple hundred dollars on them beforehand - point it out on the tin. Building the "right" list for difficult armies should be about correctly guessing the enemies composition though, not "spam the best unit", and it should never contribute to more than, say 25% of the game overall.

Once each side gets to the table though, I still want the other 50% of the game decided by who has the better strategy. They brought the right units, now they have use them properly.

That last 25%? Let luck have that - or hand it back over to in-game strategy.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 23:12:57


Post by: Canadian 5th


Hecaton wrote:
It should 100% have limited impact on your odds of victory. That's not the same as zero or near-zero impact.

How would you do that? How would you fix the balance between a T3 W1 5+Sv army with nothing but lasguns and a tank company that went full anti-horde skew? I'm being extreme on purpose because it forces people to confront the fact that the balance for 40k is really, extremely difficult to find due to its sheer scope and scale.

Listen, you come off like someone who doesn't really play and so does nothing but listbuild and theorycraft - and you want that to be the whole of the game.

I'm sending up extreme examples because they're things that won't go away in 40k. People will buy models that make 'bad' lists and play against people that only bought tanks in a meta that only changes every few months when somebody finally buys and builds that new model they saved up for. At the same time, people will grind tournaments and others will play crusade with their middle-aged friends and everybody will use the coolest and best-painted stuff from their 10k+ points collection. The game will have to work for all of those to be balanced. It'll also have to work when Timmy guard horde goes into the store and plays Spike tournament grinder.

I want the people asking for balance to confront this fact and then, rather than saying GW needs to fix it, give concrete and specific examples for how they would fix problems. Anybody can whine about balance and propose vague and unworkable solutions, but I think Dakka can do better. So let's fix 40k.

It doesn't necessarily mean skew lists are punished. Going skew should be a meaningful choice - running a denial strategy, maximizing one aspect of your list while making big sacrifices elsewhere. It should not just be a matter of taking max amounts of whatever the best unit in the codex is.

It does though. If a skew list only has a 10% advantage over the list that it hard counters it's going to suck on toast against anything semi-competitive. This in turn means your game is balanced only for a very narrow range of TAC tournament-style lists. This is the balance we have now and people are constantly complaining that marines are too good in casual play and crying help my DE beat Knights and a million other things. If your 'fixed' game doesn't cover this it frankly isn't fixed.

 BertBert wrote:
There is a lot of room between "forever bad" and "so good it makes list building trivial". Imo skew lists should generally be disadvantaged, though.

So that means Knights will always be bad and to an extent that Custodes and Harlies who are skew by virtue of not having unit variety should be bad because they always skew. Is this fair to players who own those models and want to play on an even playing field?

If you heavily lean into one aspect of your army instead of bringing a well balanced force, that should be a risk and not a boon.

So little Timmy who spent his hard-earned allowance and Christmas money on a pure Terminator DW force should just suck it up and lose because he picked a skew list and his buddy had help from his dad and built a semi-competitive TAC force of some other army. Is this going to keep Timmy playing 40k long term?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 23:29:14


Post by: ccs


Karol wrote:
Okey, but this only works for armies with large number of units of different kinds, who actualy can make a choice if they want this or that unit.

A SoB player doesn't really have a choice in picking troop options or taking MM devastators.


Troops wise, no.
But as the point of playing a SoB army is to play with SoB, why would you not want to use them??? Though I guess you might spend the CP to run a Vanguard detachment or such if you wanted to skip Troops.

Heavies? We have 4 options thank you very much!
1) Retributors (can be armed with MM/HB/Heavy Flamer - all have uses)
2) Mortifiers
3) Penitent Engines
4) Exorcist missile tanks
All four of these are effective & have their uses.

Karol wrote:
Lets say we are in 10th, and GW drops down a rule which makes t3 +3sv models really bad. What is suppose a SoB player suppose to do, besides buying a new army?


HA! Most SoB players - prior to the new blood brought in by the shiny new plastics last year - are really dedicated to playing their army. They will power through & Win/Lose/Draw proudly be that person who puts the rare & often neglected army on the table.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 23:32:37


Post by: BertBert


 Canadian 5th wrote:


 BertBert wrote:
There is a lot of room between "forever bad" and "so good it makes list building trivial". Imo skew lists should generally be disadvantaged, though.

So that means Knights will always be bad and to an extent that Custodes and Harlies who are skew by virtue of not having unit variety should be bad because they always skew. Is this fair to players who own those models and want to play on an even playing field?

If you heavily lean into one aspect of your army instead of bringing a well balanced force, that should be a risk and not a boon.

So little Timmy who spent his hard-earned allowance and Christmas money on a pure Terminator DW force should just suck it up and lose because he picked a skew list and his buddy had help from his dad and built a semi-competitive TAC force of some other army. Is this going to keep Timmy playing 40k long term?


Your argument boils down to the false dichtomy that the result can only be armies that are either super good or super bad. The degree to which something like Deathwing will differ in strength to an all comers Space Marine list is determined by several factors, each of which can be adjusted to produce a reasonably equal chance of winning for both sides. Core rules, missions, terrain, individual ability and dice luck are all factors here that need to be considered. That being said, I do find it reasonable to balance the game around those all comers lists to have a solid base to work from.

If an army book offers all those options, let's take space marines as an example, then a generalist approach should on average outperform a skew list if internal balance is good. Custodes don't have these additional options, so their army needs to be designed in a way that the few units they have do cover all important facets, just scaled back onto fewer, relatively stronger models. Knights will have problems (they were absolutely op not too long ago btw.) in some ways, because they are the single most extreme outlier and as such, difficult to tweak to the same standard as generic armies.

As for Timmy, he should be made aware by the nice people working in their LGS that Deathwing is an "intermediate" army that requires more finesse than others, because they are specialised. The notion that you should just be able to pick up any legal constellation of units and have the same chance at winning as everyone else is utopic.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 23:37:49


Post by: Canadian 5th


 BertBert wrote:
Your argument boils down to the false dichtomy that is armies can be either super good or super bad. The degree to which something like Deathwing will differ in strength to an all comers Space Marine list is determined by several factors, each of which can be adjusted to produce a reasonably equal chance of winning for both sides. Core rules, missions, terrain, individual ability and dice luck are all factors here that need to be considered. That being said, I do find it reasonable to balance the game around those all comers lists to have a solid base to work from.

If an army book offers all those options, let's take space marines as an example, then a generalist approach should on average outperform a skew list if internal balance is good. Custodes don't have these additional options, so their army needs to be designed in a way that the few units they have do cover all important facets, just scaled back onto fewer, relatively stronger models. Knights will have problems (they were absolutely op not too long ago btw.) in some ways, because they are the single most extreme outlier and as such, difficult to tweak to the same standard as generic armies.

As for Timmy, he should be made aware by the nice people working in their LGS that Deathwing is an "advanced" army that requires more finesse than others, because they are specialised. The notion that you should just be able to pick up any legal constellation of units and have the same chance at winning as everyone else is utopic.

The game you're proposing isn't balanced then. It might or might not be more balanced than 40k is now, but current 40k is already pretty well balanced if the nice people at the LGS point you to a top tier army and a tournament netlist. There are also members of this forum that would hate this kind of balance because it would likely be broken at some level of optimization be that at the tournament level or the level of two players ordering used armies online and getting an unbalanced pair level.

This is what I mean when I say that 40k can't be balanced.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 23:53:09


Post by: BertBert


 Canadian 5th wrote:


This is what I mean when I say that 40k can't be balanced.


And I do largely agree with that notion, because there are just too many armies and units at this point, but balance is a spectrum and there are still a lot of gains to be made from where we are now to what would be considered perfect balance.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/12 23:59:42


Post by: Canadian 5th


 BertBert wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:


This is what I mean when I say that 40k can't be balanced.


And I do largely agree with that notion, because there are just too many armies and units at this point, but balance is a spectrum and there are still a lot of gains to be made from where we are now to what would be considered perfect balance.

Now that we agree what specific steps need to be taken to fix 40k? As I've said before, saying a thing should be done is easy, setting a framework for what needs to be done is much harder.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 00:06:01


Post by: BertBert


 Canadian 5th wrote:

Now that we agree what specific steps need to be taken to fix 40k? As I've said before, saying a thing should be done is easy, setting a framework for what needs to be done is much harder.


Off the top of my head:

- increase stat/dice granularity to better differentiate unit and weapon profiles
- drastically reduce the number of stratagems and change the way they work from damage multiplier towards tactical utility
- implement a turn system that allows for more interaction, reducing the likelihood of getting crippled or tabled early in the game
- change missions in a way that doesn't emphasize any unit type disproportionally OR give all armies equal access to said unit type (which is probably more difficult to do)


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 00:29:28


Post by: a fat guy


They used to try to truly balance their games (See the Dark Elf overhaul for 6th edition fantasy) and I think they still do for current models.

I suspect that they make models that need a replacement (anything finecast or truly ancient) less powerful and the new releases always seemed to be too good in some way for their points back when I was paying attention to this stuff a year ago.

Nowadays I don't bother with anything new they sell and just buy old stuff on second hand sites for 6th edition fantasy (although I did buy 80 zombies new from my FLGS if that counts?)

Someone like that Matthias guy doing the 9th age ruleset needs to fix the points costs if we want true balance. Bring the points up, way way way higher than the current points system to allow for better granularity. GW didn't go far enough when they tried this and now it's pretty much meaningless. Intercessors went back to being 20 points again which they weren't good enough at originally (from what I've heard) but that should make them amazing again now afterwards anyway since this points rebalancing made everything else go way up in price too. It's like instead of making primaris worse, they just made everything else way worse? This stuff puts me in a bad mood so I'm gonna go back to my 6th edition army books now...


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 00:53:03


Post by: SturmOgre


 Canadian 5th wrote:



The game you're proposing isn't balanced then. It might or might not be more balanced than 40k is now, but current 40k is already pretty well balanced if the nice people at the LGS point you to a top tier army and a tournament netlist. There are also members of this forum that would hate this kind of balance because it would likely be broken at some level of optimization be that at the tournament level or the level of two players ordering used armies online and getting an unbalanced pair level.

This is what I mean when I say that 40k can't be balanced.


Could you give a concrete definition of balanced (from your perspective) please? Because I don't see many people in this thread advocating for a game where any list has a 50/50 chance against any other list. And even netlists can be greatly unbalanced between factions. To have a reasonable winrate range, you would have to restrict the factions those nice people point to as well.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 01:05:45


Post by: Slayer-Fan123


 BertBert wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:


 BertBert wrote:
There is a lot of room between "forever bad" and "so good it makes list building trivial". Imo skew lists should generally be disadvantaged, though.

So that means Knights will always be bad and to an extent that Custodes and Harlies who are skew by virtue of not having unit variety should be bad because they always skew. Is this fair to players who own those models and want to play on an even playing field?

If you heavily lean into one aspect of your army instead of bringing a well balanced force, that should be a risk and not a boon.

So little Timmy who spent his hard-earned allowance and Christmas money on a pure Terminator DW force should just suck it up and lose because he picked a skew list and his buddy had help from his dad and built a semi-competitive TAC force of some other army. Is this going to keep Timmy playing 40k long term?


Your argument boils down to the false dichtomy that the result can only be armies that are either super good or super bad. The degree to which something like Deathwing will differ in strength to an all comers Space Marine list is determined by several factors, each of which can be adjusted to produce a reasonably equal chance of winning for both sides. Core rules, missions, terrain, individual ability and dice luck are all factors here that need to be considered. That being said, I do find it reasonable to balance the game around those all comers lists to have a solid base to work from.

If an army book offers all those options, let's take space marines as an example, then a generalist approach should on average outperform a skew list if internal balance is good. Custodes don't have these additional options, so their army needs to be designed in a way that the few units they have do cover all important facets, just scaled back onto fewer, relatively stronger models. Knights will have problems (they were absolutely op not too long ago btw.) in some ways, because they are the single most extreme outlier and as such, difficult to tweak to the same standard as generic armies.

As for Timmy, he should be made aware by the nice people working in their LGS that Deathwing is an "intermediate" army that requires more finesse than others, because they are specialised. The notion that you should just be able to pick up any legal constellation of units and have the same chance at winning as everyone else is utopic.

Soooooooooo if the people familiar with 40k aren't working the day Timmy buys Deathwing, what happens?

Man, imagine blaming the kid that purchased the models instead of the company writing the rules for them! And seriously, intermediate? That's the word you really want to use?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 01:08:42


Post by: AnomanderRake


 Canadian 5th wrote:
...Now that we agree what specific steps need to be taken to fix 40k? As I've said before, saying a thing should be done is easy, setting a framework for what needs to be done is much harder.


*Large-scale rework of the concept of CP/stratagems. Put stratagems that affect a unit on their datasheet and stratagems that affect another unit on an HQ unit's datasheet. Instead of "no duplicate stratagems" to control people blowing through their whole CP allowance in one turn move to 1CP at the start of the game and 1CP/turn.

*Revise the to-wound table, make intermediate Strength less effective against high-T.

*Revise stats more generally, reduce W on non-vehicle units, add W to vehicles, reduce speed on loads of things, reduce spammable mid-power D2/Dd3, reduce rate of fire and AP on approximately everything.

*Revise terrain, vehicles need to be able to benefit from cover and 18+W models need somewhere to hide.

*Snipers: Distribute high-power sniper weapons more broadly so that armies currently stuck with 4/-/1 crit-mortal "sniper rifles" can interact with characters.

*Revise LOS to reference the "center" of a model instead of any point on the model to make LOS more predictable.

*Delete all double-action abilities.

*Revise Reserves; make them appear at the end of your turn so your opponent has a chance to react rather than giving you free invincible alpha-strike units.

(There's way more but that as a starting point might help explain how badly broken 9th is right now.)


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 01:10:57


Post by: Canadian 5th


SturmOgre wrote:
Could you give a concrete definition of balanced (from your perspective) please? Because I don't see many people in this thread advocating for a game where any list has a 50/50 chance against any other list. And even netlists can be greatly unbalanced between factions. To have a reasonable winrate range, you would have to restrict the factions those nice people point to as well.

My ideal would be that every faction would have equally viable lists at the top tier of play with a balance no worse than 52-48 between the best and worst possible matches, as you slide into more chaotic casual lists the balance would be fine if it stayed in the 57-43 range so nobody is too roughed up. I'd want to see a mix of lists all viable at the same time in those top tiers as well high toughness large models with low model counts, mid-range TAC, first turn charges, reserve shenanigans, and hordes all within that 4% slice. I'd also desire that as many factions as possible have more than one viable strat and that each viable strat be flexible enough that you'd see changes between events as people try to game the meta.

To achieve this I'd want to gather more data from events. Things like the end of turn/round scores, lists of CP spent, and models killed from rounds 3 and up in tournaments. I'd also push hard to launch an official 40k simulator app so the data can be gathered in a far less intrusive fashion. My business model would be to price units in the app at 25% of the cost of a physical kit and include codes for kits in every new box shipped. For long term players, I'd give them credit for any purchases within 12 months of the launch from official GW stores.

From there balance changes would depend on what the data was giving my team.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 01:18:11


Post by: BertBert


Slayer-Fan123 wrote:

Soooooooooo if the people familiar with 40k aren't working the day Timmy buys Deathwing, what happens?

Man, imagine blaming the kid that purchased the models instead of the company writing the rules for them! And seriously, intermediate? That's the word you really want to use?


Man, you must be imagining things. Please read more carefully.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 01:20:41


Post by: Slayer-Fan123


 BertBert wrote:
Slayer-Fan123 wrote:

Soooooooooo if the people familiar with 40k aren't working the day Timmy buys Deathwing, what happens?

Man, imagine blaming the kid that purchased the models instead of the company writing the rules for them! And seriously, intermediate? That's the word you really want to use?


Man, you must be imagining things. Please read more carefully.

When you're saying that the people in the store NEED to warn any newcomer, regardless of age, how bad a unit or army is, there's a discrepancy on holding the company accountable. You're blaming Timmy for all intents and purposes.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 01:24:50


Post by: BertBert


Slayer-Fan123 wrote:

When you're saying that the people in the store NEED to warn any newcomer, regardless of age, how bad a unit or army is, there's a discrepancy on holding tgr company accountable. You're blaming Timmy for all intents and purposes.


I'm sorry, but that doesn't make any sense.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 01:29:20


Post by: Canadian 5th


 BertBert wrote:
Slayer-Fan123 wrote:

When you're saying that the people in the store NEED to warn any newcomer, regardless of age, how bad a unit or army is, there's a discrepancy on holding tgr company accountable. You're blaming Timmy for all intents and purposes.


I'm sorry, but that doesn't make any sense.

He's making perfect sense. If a game is so unbalanced that certain units need to come with warning labels to avoid new players making mistakes that cost them games you're essentially saying that there is a wrong way to play and that players playing in that incorrect style should be punished with an army that's going to win fewer games than your ideal TAC list which your propose we balance around. This is exactly the sort of thing I've been trying to point out by making the points I've been making.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 01:49:19


Post by: Eldarain


At the other end of the spectrum players must also be warned if their choices will be too oppressive or derail their fledgling groups enjoyment. Especially in a fandom that vilifies the players of overtuned factions instead of the design studio who produces the imbalance.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 01:54:35


Post by: Mezmorki


I think that the variance in lists needs to be toned down. I'd be in a favor of "matched play" lists or whatever being required to use a single battalion detachment. Limits how much you can skew your lists and forces players to work around some more constraints in list building. Seems like it would still provide a pretty large range of different list types.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 01:56:23


Post by: Canadian 5th


Let's also warn people who play armies that are just unfun too. So hordes are out they take too long to move, Knights are also out because they don't let your opponent get the joy of removing your models from the table the way a more balanced force would, Tau are even more out because we can't have that anime style in our game.

To be clear this is tongue firmly in cheek but also 100% fitting for how toxic the 40k community can be.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 02:10:55


Post by: BertBert


 Canadian 5th wrote:
If a game is so unbalanced that certain units need to come with warning labels to avoid new players making mistakes that cost them games you're essentially saying that there is a wrong way to play and that players playing in that incorrect style should be punished with an army that's going to win fewer games than your ideal TAC list which your propose we balance around. This is exactly the sort of thing I've been trying to point out by making the points I've been making.


And it is based on the false premise that GW has any obligation to make sure people are winning games consistently - and if they don't they somehow devalue their product or "punish" their customers, which is frankly ridiculous.
First of all, the game is and always has been very much an afterthought and vehicle to sell their miniatures. The miniatures are the main product, which is also why GW will never release a battle simulator or go the extra mile to improve balancing.
This is something people tend to forget, so they apply standards to 40k that GW is never going to meet. That line of reasoning is rooted in a fundamental misconception about the product.

If they were to balance it according to my suggestion, however, my point would be this:

Units within a codex need to be balanced against each other, so that they all remain useful to a reasonable extent. Timmy buying a box of Terminators would be fine, since Terminators are a valid choice among many. Timmy buying a second box, because Terminators are really cool, would also be fine, because there is still enough space to cover the other unit archetypes in his list while tilting the list only slightly towards the specialisation of whatever Terminators provide.

Timmy buying five boxes of Terminators would result in his list being skewed to an extent that naturally deprives him of certain options, because he now cannot fit both Outriders and Eliminators into his list. He might like the idea of teleporting 80% of his force behind enemy lines and unleashing a hail of bolter shots, but that doesn't mean he's entitled to pull that trick off to the same degree of success as a list with more flexibility and opportunity to adapt to various situations. He will, however, sometimes completely annihilate his opponent, if he is presented with the right set of circumstances. It's a self explanatory result of overspecialisation. I said people should make him aware of that fact, since little Timmy with his measly allowance is obviously a child, who might not yet understand this dynamic.

If all units within a codex are sufficiently diversified and useful in their own role, heavily skewed lists are at a disadvantage on average. I believe that's a reasonable and intuitive drawback to have and, believe me, I'm exactly the kind of Timmy who buys 5 boxes of Terminators.


Again, I don't believe it's reasonable to assume it will ever be possible to balance all list constellations across all factions against each other to a degree that produces the results you are looking for. Not because it's a technical impossibility, but because GW has no inclination to go the extra mile.




Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 02:15:44


Post by: Canadian 5th


 BertBert wrote:
Again, I don't believe it's reasonable to assume it will ever be possible to balance all list constellations across all factions against each other to a degree that produces the results you are looking for. Not because it's a technical impossibility, but because GW has no inclination to go the extra mile.

Given that your changes are equally unlikely as mine why should we take your objections seriously?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 02:23:08


Post by: BertBert


 Canadian 5th wrote:
 BertBert wrote:
Again, I don't believe it's reasonable to assume it will ever be possible to balance all list constellations across all factions against each other to a degree that produces the results you are looking for. Not because it's a technical impossibility, but because GW has no inclination to go the extra mile.

Given that your changes are equally unlikely as mine why should we take your objections seriously?


You asked me about my perspective and I gave it to you. You are free to do with it whatever you like. I'm just not going to be accused of blaming children for picking the "wrong" faction with what is the most impressive display of mental gymnastics I've seen in a long time.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 02:24:34


Post by: Canadian 5th


 Mezmorki wrote:
I think that the variance in lists needs to be toned down. I'd be in a favor of "matched play" lists or whatever being required to use a single battalion detachment. Limits how much you can skew your lists and forces players to work around some more constraints in list building. Seems like it would still provide a pretty large range of different list types.

It may also make current collections literally unplayable which should be avoided where possible.

 BertBert wrote:
You asked me about my perspective and I gave it to you. You are free to do with it whatever you like. I'm just not going to be accused of blaming children for picking the "wrong" faction with what is the most impressive display of mental gymnastics I've seen in a long time.

You're literally saying that we should design the game such that Timmy will require outside advice to build a list that doesn't suffer because you arbitrarily value some types of lists over others. That you can't see that Timmy is being punished via losing more games than his peers is your own failing and not that of Slayer and myself.

You also, in essence, said that GW has no obligation to provide a balanced game which is an interesting position for you to hold given that you seem to desire a balanced game.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 02:34:13


Post by: ccs


 Canadian 5th wrote:
 BertBert wrote:
Again, I don't believe it's reasonable to assume it will ever be possible to balance all list constellations across all factions against each other to a degree that produces the results you are looking for. Not because it's a technical impossibility, but because GW has no inclination to go the extra mile.

Given that your changes are equally unlikely as mine why should we take your objections seriously?


Because we know you don't actually play this game?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 02:35:31


Post by: BertBert


 Canadian 5th wrote:
[
You're literally saying that we should design the game such that Timmy will require outside advice to build a list that doesn't suffer because you arbitrarily value some types of lists over others. That you can't see that Timmy is being punished via losing more games than his peers is your own failing and not that of Slayer and myself.


What you call "outside advice" was called "Force Organisation chart" when I was little Timmy. It also helped that armies on display in the White Dwarf and any other publication were built around that very same concept, with step-by-step guides on how to start and expand your army. These things obviously go hand in hand with a design of that nature.



Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 02:39:03


Post by: Canadian 5th


 BertBert wrote:
What you call "outside advice" was called "Force Organisation chart" when I was little Timmy. It also helped that armies on display in the White Dwarf and any other publication were built around that very same concept, with step-by-step guides on how to start and expand your army. These things obviously go hand in hand with a design of that nature.

That doesn't exist in current 40k though so how is Timmy supposed to follow it? Also, why assume that Timmy would read a hobby adjacent magazine rather than simply buying the rules relevant to his army and grabbing a free copy of 9ths quick start rules?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 02:46:08


Post by: BertBert


 Canadian 5th wrote:
 BertBert wrote:
What you call "outside advice" was called "Force Organisation chart" when I was little Timmy. It also helped that armies on display in the White Dwarf and any other publication were built around that very same concept, with step-by-step guides on how to start and expand your army. These things obviously go hand in hand with a design of that nature.

That doesn't exist in current 40k though so how is Timmy supposed to follow it? Also, why assume that Timmy would read a hobby adjacent magazine rather than simply buying the rules relevant to his army and grabbing a free copy of 9ths quick start rules?


Force Organisation Charts were also included in the codices, but that's because they were part of the core rules. These are hypothetical thoughts, not changes I would implement tomorrow with the current product range. Maybe I didn't make that point clear enough for you.
The modern day equivalent of the WD would likely be some sort of Facebook Community or the Warhammer Community site. Why would Timmy not engage in other hobby related media? That's what people tend to do with things they are passionate about.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 02:57:44


Post by: Canadian 5th


 BertBert wrote:
Force Organisation Charts were also included in the codices, but that's because they were part of the core rules. These are hypothetical thoughts, not changes I would implement tomorrow with the current product range. Maybe I didn't make that point clear enough for you.
The modern day equivalent of the WD would likely be some sort of Facebook Community or the Warhammer Community site. Why would Timmy not engage in other hobby related media? That's what people tend to do with things they are passionate about.

Why assume Timmy is passionate? He might just have friends that play and have picked up some plastic toys so he could be included in the game. Don't assume that every gamer cares about their game the way you do.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 03:02:53


Post by: BertBert


 Canadian 5th wrote:
 BertBert wrote:
Force Organisation Charts were also included in the codices, but that's because they were part of the core rules. These are hypothetical thoughts, not changes I would implement tomorrow with the current product range. Maybe I didn't make that point clear enough for you.
The modern day equivalent of the WD would likely be some sort of Facebook Community or the Warhammer Community site. Why would Timmy not engage in other hobby related media? That's what people tend to do with things they are passionate about.

Why assume Timmy is passionate? He might just have friends that play and have picked up some plastic toys so he could be included in the game. Don't assume that every gamer cares about their game the way you do.


Don't you assume then that every player puts a high win ratio at the center of their hobby experience either, to the point that they are suffering if the numbers don't add up. Johnny is perfectly happy winning one in three games with his Terminator strike force.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 03:45:15


Post by: Canadian 5th


 BertBert wrote:
Don't you assume then that every player puts a high win ratio at the center of their hobby experience either, to the point that they are suffering if the numbers don't add up. Johnny is perfectly happy winning one in three games with his Terminator strike force.

No, I only have to assume that some players will do that and some are all I need to prove that your idea of balance is punishing to at least some players and is thusly unsuitable for 40k.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 03:47:51


Post by: BertBert


 Canadian 5th wrote:
 BertBert wrote:
Don't you assume then that every player puts a high win ratio at the center of their hobby experience either, to the point that they are suffering if the numbers don't add up. Johnny is perfectly happy winning one in three games with his Terminator strike force.

No, I only have to assume that some players will do that and some are all I need to prove that your idea of balance is punishing to at least some players and is thusly unsuitable for 40k.


What would be a reasonable alternative then to make every single player happy?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 03:49:38


Post by: Slayer-Fan123


 BertBert wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:
[
You're literally saying that we should design the game such that Timmy will require outside advice to build a list that doesn't suffer because you arbitrarily value some types of lists over others. That you can't see that Timmy is being punished via losing more games than his peers is your own failing and not that of Slayer and myself.


What you call "outside advice" was called "Force Organisation chart" when I was little Timmy. It also helped that armies on display in the White Dwarf and any other publication were built around that very same concept, with step-by-step guides on how to start and expand your army. These things obviously go hand in hand with a design of that nature.


I didn't realize the original FOC stopped Deathwing from becoming Troops with Belial or somehow make Terminators effective in the elite slot. Almost like none of this garbage being said is true and the Terminators are a terrible unit regardless! So what's the point you're really trying to make?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 03:53:20


Post by: BertBert


Slayer-Fan123 wrote:
[ So what's the point you're really trying to make?


The Terminator example was an abstraction to illustrate my point about internal balance and the effect it would have on skew lists. I also expressly mentioned factions that are inherently skewed, like Deathwing.

I'm honestly surprised why you appear to be so worked up. Maybe you should take a break for a bit.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 03:57:06


Post by: Canadian 5th


 BertBert wrote:
What would be a reasonable alternative then to make every single player happy?

Analyzing the data generated by people who play 40k and using it to balance the game rather than suggestions pulled out of a single player's backside as your suggestions seem to be. It won't be perfect but it would do better than your suggestions.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 03:59:41


Post by: BertBert


 Canadian 5th wrote:
 BertBert wrote:
What would be a reasonable alternative then to make every single player happy?

Analyzing the data generated by people who play 40k and using it to balance the game rather than suggestions pulled out of a single player's backside as your suggestions seem to be. It won't be perfect but it would do better than your suggestions.


So balancing every single faction and the increasing amount of units supported by big data you pull from where?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 04:04:40


Post by: Canadian 5th


 BertBert wrote:
So balancing every single faction and the increasing amount of units supported by big data you pull from where?

I'd start by gathering data from official tournaments and attempting to get FLGS and GW Store players to record data in casual play. I've also suggested a simulator which would be a great way to help GW improve the game.

Neither is likely to happen but from a logical standpoint data collection on a scale never before seen in 40k is the only place to start.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 04:07:47


Post by: BertBert


 Canadian 5th wrote:
 BertBert wrote:
So balancing every single faction and the increasing amount of units supported by big data you pull from where?

I'd start by gathering data from official tournaments and attempting to get FLGS and GW Store players to record data in casual play. I've also suggested a simulator which would be a great way to help GW improve the game.

Neither is likely to happen but from a logical standpoint data collection on a scale never before seen in 40k is the only place to start.


Yup, that I can agree with.

They already sample tournament results, but sadly they will never commit to anything of this scale, never mind a digital version of 40k.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 04:09:09


Post by: Canadian 5th


 BertBert wrote:
Yup, that I can agree with.

They already sample tournament results, but sadly they will never commit to anything of this scale, never mind a digital version of 40k.

If the ITC can grow from discontent with the state of the game so can such data collection.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 04:48:57


Post by: ccs


 Canadian 5th wrote:
 BertBert wrote:
Yup, that I can agree with.

They already sample tournament results, but sadly they will never commit to anything of this scale, never mind a digital version of 40k.

If the ITC can grow from discontent with the state of the game so can such data collection.


Well get busy then.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 05:58:22


Post by: Slayer-Fan123


ccs wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:
 BertBert wrote:
Yup, that I can agree with.

They already sample tournament results, but sadly they will never commit to anything of this scale, never mind a digital version of 40k.

If the ITC can grow from discontent with the state of the game so can such data collection.


Well get busy then.

Well...we kinda are. Each time a tournament happens we discuss it pretty heavily and then GW does little to fix it. How long did it take to nerf Castellans?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 07:22:47


Post by: Hecaton


 Canadian 5th wrote:

How would you do that? How would you fix the balance between a T3 W1 5+Sv army with nothing but lasguns and a tank company that went full anti-horde skew? I'm being extreme on purpose because it forces people to confront the fact that the balance for 40k is really, extremely difficult to find due to its sheer scope and scale.


Running skew vs. skew is going to produce crazy results. That doesn't bother me.

 Canadian 5th wrote:

I'm sending up extreme examples because they're things that won't go away in 40k. People will buy models that make 'bad' lists and play against people that only bought tanks in a meta that only changes every few months when somebody finally buys and builds that new model they saved up for. At the same time, people will grind tournaments and others will play crusade with their middle-aged friends and everybody will use the coolest and best-painted stuff from their 10k+ points collection. The game will have to work for all of those to be balanced. It'll also have to work when Timmy guard horde goes into the store and plays Spike tournament grinder.


Sure, and Spike tournament grinder will probably win, and this isn't a bad thing. The point is, Spike should win because he plays better on the table, mostly, not because he sat around and came up with a better list.

 Canadian 5th wrote:
I want the people asking for balance to confront this fact and then, rather than saying GW needs to fix it, give concrete and specific examples for how they would fix problems. Anybody can whine about balance and propose vague and unworkable solutions, but I think Dakka can do better. So let's fix 40k.


Well, your whims don't dictate other peoples' behavior, as much as you've shown you wish it. And the world is much better off for it.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 08:01:44


Post by: Not Online!!!


I agree with you Hecaton, the onus of balancing is most certainly not on the consumer , which is forced to buy rules peacemeal for 30£ each. In some cases 2x or 3x for the chosen faction (singular) because GW want's to milk it's custommers.

And for that price i don't think it is entitlement to ask for a product handled with care.


Personally, as someone that recently moved back bit more torwards historicals:

List building should loose you the game, winning should happen on the board.

What do i mean by that, overly skew should be punished by core game mechanics (surpression vs infantry, AT weaponry and sightlines aswell as acess for tanks etc.) ( and not kill secondaries). Yes that would mean certain factions would need a complete overhaul.
As it stands tough 40k has these core mechanics not. And it attempts to simulate some of them lacklusterly with kill secondaries.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 08:07:29


Post by: Jidmah


Not Online!!! wrote:
List building should loose you the game, winning should happen on the board.


Good one, I'm going to steal that


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 08:21:18


Post by: kirotheavenger


Not Online!!! wrote:

List building should lose you the game, winning should happen on the board.

This is exactly the point, perfectly put.

As for inherently skewed factions like Knights, Custodes, Deathwatch, Harlequins, or whatever, I'm okay if these are just inherently not competitive as stand-alone armies in full size games.
Someone mentioned it way down the thread, but it's like having a playable army of SOE agents or naval Destroyers in Bolt Action. It's silly.
These should be called "Demi-Codexes" or similar to make it clear that they're not stand-alone in the way that proper Codexes are. We have ally rules, it's not unreasonable to use them.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 08:28:48


Post by: Blackie


Karol wrote:


But the mechanics themselfs don't matter. It is just like with sports, it doesn't matter what the sport is about, but if you want to check if something is wrong with it, you check who is winning and how often.


That's they worst example I've ever seen.

In sports everyone starts with the same rules, in 40k only the general rules are shared, then each faction has its own rules.

In sports a team or an athlete that dominates for a decade is a well earned achievement that should be celebrated, not countered or considered wrong. Changing the rules just because a team won eveything since forever is wrong on every possible level.

This is very different from 40k where factions have qualities just because GW designed them that way. In a context like 40k factions aren't real players with real abilities, factions are actually the rules. Game mechanics are also related to sales, GW makes the rules in order to max out the profits. Their business isn't just to provide a game but to produce and sell plastic toys and hobby tools.


Automatically Appended Next Post:
Hecaton wrote:


The point is, Spike should win because he plays better on the table, mostly, not because he sat around and came up with a better list.



To a certain degree yes, but fielding a more optimized list than the opponent with real synergies can already be a consequence of playing better.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 08:33:33


Post by: Not Online!!!


Jidmah wrote:
Not Online!!! wrote:
List building should loose you the game, winning should happen on the board.


Good one, I'm going to steal that


By all means go ahead.

kirotheavenger wrote:
Not Online!!! wrote:

List building should lose you the game, winning should happen on the board.

This is exactly the point, perfectly put.

As for inherently skewed factions like Knights, Custodes, Deathwatch, Harlequins, or whatever, I'm okay if these are just inherently not competitive as stand-alone armies in full size games.
Someone mentioned it way down the thread, but it's like having a playable army of SOE agents or naval Destroyers in Bolt Action. It's silly.
These should be called "Demi-Codexes" or similar to make it clear that they're not stand-alone in the way that proper Codexes are. We have ally rules, it's not unreasonable to use them.


See, Knights generally have households and household guards, yes the focus should be on the big stompy stuff, but they should be just as forced to have and field servitor, knight guards or whatevs you call them and have a regular FOC like any other faction.
And yes, some of the minifctions are over the top.
Harlequins f.e. or scions are both exemples of GW attempting to force recurring sales via cutting appart or out options out of existing dexes with bare minimum support. ( i count supplements in there aswell, they are just a scumbag move to monetise the SM players of various blends, when you could've just had appendix lists in the SM dex and rules for specific chapters but that 'd be to custommer friendly)



Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 08:42:26


Post by: kirotheavenger


Not Online!!! wrote:


See, Knights generally have households and household guards, yes the focus should be on the big stompy stuff, but they should be just as forced to have and field servitor, knight guards or whatevs you call them and have a regular FOC like any other faction.
And yes, some of the minifctions are over the top.
Harlequins f.e. or scions are both exemples of GW attempting to force recurring sales via cutting appart or out options out of existing dexes with bare minimum support. ( i count supplements in there aswell, they are just a scumbag move to monetise the SM players of various blends, when you could've just had appendix lists in the SM dex and rules for specific chapters but that 'd be to custommer friendly)


Oh I totally agree. Knights could easily have Men at Arms added to their codex. Just making them a demi-faction would be the easiest route and letting players ally with Admech or whatever. Perhaps Knights could have a "Brood Brothers" esque rule where they can take an Admech detachment as Men at Arms.
Scions is a great example of exactly how I think other armies should work. You have the option of making a pure-Scions force, but they're really marketed as a supplementary faction to Imperial Guard.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 08:55:41


Post by: Klickor


With the way we now have the larger faction keywords like the Imperium keyword and ability to ally rather freely within it I also think we should do away with each faction being able to stand perfectly on their own.

Knights and Custodes probably shouldn't be able to stand on their own. If they do, that might work, but the core rules,including missions, shouldn't suffer when being designed to accommodate them. We have extremely simple core rules and mission design to make all kinds of lists and factions viable.

Their LOTR game isnt balanced around the smaller skew factions at all. Pure Ents are gonna crush some missions and auto-lose even more missions. The Ent player do have the option to ally in numbers to make up for their weaknesses but that will also reduce a lot of their strengths. It is obvious they tried to make all of the larger factions rather balanced and base the game and missions around that. Rohan, Gondor, Rivendell, Mordor, Isengard etc are what the game is based around. Not Ents, White Council, Eagles, Dragons or even the main characters of the books and series, The Fellowship and Thorins Company. The latter 2 are playable but even though they are the main characters of the story the game isnt centered around them.

40k with the large scale it is at now should probably decide what their focus is about. If they really want there to be this many models and these big models on the table as well perhaps smaller more niche factions being able to operate equally to others shouldnt be part of the design progress at all. Normal Space Marine chapters are probably the smallest faction that should work. They are after all super flexible and made to to operate in any condition against anything from 1 marine to the whole chapter at once. Grey Knights, Knights, Deathwatch and Custodes on the other hand should probably be half a list at the most and have the other half be normal marines, guard or admech if made competitive. I could see local meta variance allowing pure lists as some form of skew list be competitive but it shouldnt be a design goal.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 09:10:56


Post by: Apple fox


There is plenty of space with those factions to get some of the units and gear added to there roster without issue.

Grey knights could get a few more space marine tanks with special rules and access to only some configurations.

Knights could use house guard and other units with standard kit but get no standard access to the tanks.

Sisters of silence could use some more of the tanks available.
And I think would be cool to do a drednaught for them in some way.

Harlequin should get at least some of the Eldar tanks.

It would be easy if they wanted to give them a bit more to work with.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 09:18:43


Post by: Jidmah


I really don't see an issue with GK, Custodes or Harlequins. While they could use some more options, all of them can field a varied non-skew army.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 09:21:00


Post by: kirotheavenger


True, you could go either way with those factions.
- Expect those factions to ally.
- Expand those factions so they don't need to ally.
Either one would work.

As for Little Timmy accidentally buying a terrible army entirely of Terminators, I don't think that's a realistic situation.
40k is a hobby that you're almost always introduced to. I can't see anyone jumping into the hobby blind by just buying a bunch of random stuff.
They'd start with the starter set, which by design should give them a balanced force to start upon. Other players in their group, store, school club, or whatever will be able to advise.

Honestly, every tactical/strategy game I know requires a basic balance of capabilities for you to be effective, and no one feels hard done by.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 09:29:42


Post by: BertBert


How dare you insinuate little Timmy engages in any sort of human relations pertaining to 40k?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 09:59:51


Post by: Jidmah


Yeah, little Timmy might join dakka and start posting about dystopian Poland for years.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 11:24:43


Post by: Karol


 kirotheavenger wrote:

As for Little Timmy accidentally buying a terrible army entirely of Terminators, I don't think that's a realistic situation.
40k is a hobby that you're almost always introduced to. I can't see anyone jumping into the hobby blind by just buying a bunch of random stuff.
They'd start with the starter set, which by design should give them a balanced force to start upon. Other players in their group, store, school club, or whatever will be able to advise.

Honestly, every tactical/strategy game I know requires a basic balance of capabilities for you to be effective, and no one feels hard done by.


GK don't have a starter set. And the buying stuff always has two aspects. What you want to buy and how much an army costs. If an army costs 1100$, but you have 480$, and there is army you can buy for 480$ there is a no small chance you are going to pick up the one 480$ one, if you did decide to start. Otherwise you will just not play w40k, but then the whole balance, what ever game is fun or not aspect of everything does not matter, because you are not playing the game.





Automatically Appended Next Post:
 Jidmah wrote:
I really don't see an issue with GK, Custodes or Harlequins. While they could use some more options, all of them can field a varied non-skew army.


I don't have the codex for the other two, but I do for the GK. I advice to look at edition rules both for 8th and for 9th, and compare how the different unit cost for the unit specific rules. I assume, considering all the harli lists look a lot like clones, that harlis with their limited unit option look the same. Custodes I only remember from 8th, and those that I see or read about all were spaming FW stuff and jetbikes.

And because everything to be efficient has to be doubled or trippled, and GK and Custodes are very high cost armies, you do end up with skew lists, because once you spend a 1000pts on two units of paladins and their support characters, you ain't going to spend the rest 500pts on something that turns the list less skew. Unless servitors someone count here.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 11:41:47


Post by: kirotheavenger


Karol wrote:
 kirotheavenger wrote:

As for Little Timmy accidentally buying a terrible army entirely of Terminators, I don't think that's a realistic situation.
40k is a hobby that you're almost always introduced to. I can't see anyone jumping into the hobby blind by just buying a bunch of random stuff.
They'd start with the starter set, which by design should give them a balanced force to start upon. Other players in their group, store, school club, or whatever will be able to advise.

Honestly, every tactical/strategy game I know requires a basic balance of capabilities for you to be effective, and no one feels hard done by.


GK don't have a starter set. And the buying stuff always has two aspects. What you want to buy and how much an army costs. If an army costs 1100$, but you have 480$, and there is army you can buy for 480$ there is a no small chance you are going to pick up the one 480$ one, if you did decide to start. Otherwise you will just not play w40k, but then the whole balance, what ever game is fun or not aspect of everything does not matter, because you are not playing the game.

The same arguments apply, you probably didn't see ~$500 of GK on eBay and, knowing nothing about 40k, bought it.
If 40k required reasonably balanced list-building, then you'd know that from your previous familiarity with 40k, and you'd know what you were buying. Or at least you should do.

I don't think it's worth dragging the whole game down because someone might bulk purchase a bunch of mismatched units.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 11:50:09


Post by: Karol


 Blackie wrote:


That's they worst example I've ever seen.

In sports everyone starts with the same rules, in 40k only the general rules are shared, then each faction has its own rules.


That is not true. Go and try to put a complain against Norwegian players to the cross-country skiing commission and check what happens. You can be disqualifed for everything, but they can all be sick with asthma and running on roid, so hard they look like crossfitters. Weight lifting same. Want to postpone or change the game as Anglish or Spanish club, here you go, try the same when from different country and evern Bayern can't pull it off. Russian, Chinese, US have different health systems, and because they are so efficient with their supplements, each 2-3 years the minimums have to be pushed further and further. And lets not get in to stuff like fight sports or cycling.

That is the national country level. Then you have the state level, where different sports have their own "military" clubs or ones sponsored by cities/mobs. Those teams are treated different then other teams too. On the local level you have different schools clubs, sponsored by different nationalities or politicians. Good luck trying to pull one over a player or team the minister that is responsible for scholarships and school fundings are. And that is before any family stuff. For example in Poland, just last night. We have total lock down, but two of the ministers sons have winter break now, so an actual school team from a sports school got kicked out so here sons , turned in to sportsman by a ministerial decree two days before, could ride down the slopes. Our top female ball throw player, olympian with gold medals and multiple time world champion, has no sponsoring because the ruling party doesn't like her. And then you can go down in lower in to school and camps, where trainers promote their family members or decide , for different types of "gifts", who is going to get the scholarships and who is never going to make it in to a state run youth or adult sports ranking. And without ranking you can't be registered as a sports person, which means no healthcare, no funding etc.

 Blackie wrote:

In sports a team or an athlete that dominates for a decade is a well earned achievement that should be celebrated, not countered or considered wrong. Changing the rules just because a team won eveything since forever is wrong on every possible level.

This is very different from 40k where factions have qualities just because GW designed them that way. In a context like 40k factions aren't real players with real abilities, factions are actually the rules. Game mechanics are also related to sales, GW makes the rules in order to max out the profits. Their business isn't just to provide a game but to produce and sell plastic toys and hobby tools.


Do you know how FIFA or MKOL functions, or any sports federation ? Of course rules are changed to make it easier for specific teams or players to win. Why do you think qualifications for olympics look the way they do? And american football has like an age long history of different coachs and teams influancing how the game is played just so their team has a higher chance of winning. And this is just small stuff comparing to coachs hiring local ultras to deal with clubs or players they don't want to play against.



Automatically Appended Next Post:
 kirotheavenger wrote:

The same arguments apply, you probably didn't see ~$500 of GK on eBay and, knowing nothing about 40k, bought it.
If 40k required reasonably balanced list-building, then you'd know that from your previous familiarity with 40k, and you'd know what you were buying. Or at least you should do.

I don't think it's worth dragging the whole game down because someone might bulk purchase a bunch of mismatched units.

The store owners told me the army was full and that the codex for GK is coming out soon, and he did not lie about that the GK codex came out in like weeks after I bought the army. Which kind of a made me unhappy about the index I bought, but books and w40k are a separate matter.

I couldn't see anything on ebay, because I don't have an ebay account. And the armies localy that I did see being sold cost 800$ minium or were 600$ but required to be painted etc.

Ah and just to give a perspective, on what I bought. I bought a full GK termintor army. And termintors were bad all 8th ed. If instead each of the termintors was a power armoured model, I would have the optimal GK army. It would still be bad, but it would be the best what GK could build under the 8th rules. So it would be skew too. And getting a 50/50 termintor/power amoured list would not be skew, but it would still be a bad list.

It doesn't really matter how it is called in the end. But GW does produce and sell armies with very bad rules. If some noob decided they like how tau look, and started with tau in 9th, they are not having a good time right now, and they are probably in for a few months of the no fun in the future. I just hope they won't have to wait 3 years for an update and get it just when the edition ends, only to get a bad set of rules again.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 11:59:24


Post by: vict0988


 Canadian 5th wrote:
I'm curious, do our forum members actually expect a balanced game from Games Workshop?

Yes, and I am disappointed every time GW fails to produce it.
Do you think Games Workshop tries to balance 40k and our current game is the result of that or do you think they aim for just enough balance that it takes some investment to see if it's balanced at all and use that imbalance for some other purpose?

The back of my head is in full tinfoil hat mode, why do tesla Immortals still cost 2 more points than regular Immortals? It is because GW still has yet to hit their quota for sale of the new Necron Warrior kits. Look at how quick they were to fix the trash new weapon option for Necron Warriors and make it into the most popular Necron Troops choice. At the front of my head I believe that the people responsible for balance are bad at their job, which is way more likely with how random it is whether new units are overcosted or undercosted.
As a follow-up, regardless of your thoughts on the previous question, would it be morally wrong for GW to intentionally create an imbalance to sell more models or even just so they can more easily shake up the meta?

It is wrong to intentionally devalue something someone has bought from you because that will make them trust you less and make them less willing to purchase from you and other sellers in the future. it's a short term game played by people that get paid to hike up quarterly earnings a bit rather than double sales in the next 10 years. It is also bad for players because they might not be able to get as much fun as they had imagined from their models as they had expected, like say if some smuck went out and bought a whole load of tesla Immortals at the tail end of 8th edition and then they were made trash by a points increase to them and a points decrease to their Troops choice competitors.

The meta will shake itself up naturally as players buy new models and armies and rotate around their lists around to counter new units or counter the units their opponents brought to counter their units, shaking it up by making trash units amazing and amazing units trash is a short term answer because it is relatively easy to spot, test and solve the meta if the game is badly balanced.

The tournament mission pack should punish horde and tank skew, not just one single mission where spamming one is punished and another one where the other is punished, because the random mission you get versus a horde or tank army might decide whether you win or lose and I think that is bad game design when there are already so many pre-turn 1 things that can heavily favour one player or the other and while the mission pack can be accounted for ahead of time, accounting for which mission you will play against which matchup is impossible. Then you could have a tank warfare casual mission where only horde skew is punished so that people are free to spam tanks if they want and people can expect more tanks.

First, a tournament mission set should be developed, then a terrain guide, then supplementary rules should be made for all factions (chapter tactics, relics...), then rules updates should be made for all factions, then points estimates should be made for how much each unit and option should cost with all the rules changes, supplementary rules and new tournament mission pack, it should get critiqued and revised, then thoroughly tested and revised again before the entire game is updated all at once and sent to the printers. Doing this project solo is impossible, you can get make a mission set, develop a terrain guide, update supplementary rules and make a suggestion for points, but you need people to look over the points estimates such that playtesters do not waste time on silly points costs like 35 pt Eradicators. Because if you send out 35 pt Eradicators and they say "that seems way too low", then you increase points by 15% up to 40 which is a hefty point increase, but whoops they are still at least 8 points undercosted, so you need to at least be within +-30% of the theoretically most balanced cost for every unit. You also need at least a couple hundred playtests to update all the points of the game which is the biggest barrier to fans being able to develop a well-balanced 40k on their own. Lastly, nobody is going to play with fanmade rules if GW are still updating the official rules, so even if you somehow succeed in making something awesome despite the odds nobody is going to care so why would anybody try?

The reason the mission set needs to be developed first is that depending on how much the missions punish spamming some armies might need to have their rules and points adjusted so that they are still viable. I think it would be best if every codex was usable solo, although I agree with some of the other posters that if Knights do not win any tournaments on their own then that is fine, even a very skewed list can be fun to play with or against if the other player's list is balanced or skewed in a way that favours neither player. While testing is going on various other missions can be made and the balance herein does not need to be solid, but imbalance needs to be obvious and intentional (like in a tank warfare mission) and the mission must still be fun to play (so no bowling alley terrain suggestion for any missions).


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 12:05:55


Post by: Jidmah


Karol wrote:
 Jidmah wrote:
I really don't see an issue with GK, Custodes or Harlequins. While they could use some more options, all of them can field a varied non-skew army.


I don't have the codex for the other two, but I do for the GK. I advice to look at edition rules both for 8th and for 9th, and compare how the different unit cost for the unit specific rules. I assume, considering all the harli lists look a lot like clones, that harlis with their limited unit option look the same. Custodes I only remember from 8th, and those that I see or read about all were spaming FW stuff and jetbikes.

And because everything to be efficient has to be doubled or trippled, and GK and Custodes are very high cost armies, you do end up with skew lists, because once you spend a 1000pts on two units of paladins and their support characters, you ain't going to spend the rest 500pts on something that turns the list less skew. Unless servitors someone count here.


Yes, that is the same for every single other army that isn't Codex: Space Marines as well.

Neither GK nor Custodes with FW support have a much smaller range of options than TS or DG have, which no one seems to have a problem with. And if you add one additional option for every slot, harlequins would be in a decent spot as well. In contrast, knights would require a full relaunch or some really creative rules writing to get them out of the skew corner.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 12:38:37


Post by: Blackie


Karol wrote:


That is not true. Go and try to put a complain against Norwegian players to the cross-country skiing commission and check what happens. You can be disqualifed for everything, but they can all be sick with asthma and running on roid, so hard they look like crossfitters. Weight lifting same. Want to postpone or change the game as Anglish or Spanish club, here you go, try the same when from different country and evern Bayern can't pull it off. Russian, Chinese, US have different health systems, and because they are so efficient with their supplements, each 2-3 years the minimums have to be pushed further and further. And lets not get in to stuff like fight sports or cycling.

That is the national country level. Then you have the state level, where different sports have their own "military" clubs or ones sponsored by cities/mobs. Those teams are treated different then other teams too. On the local level you have different schools clubs, sponsored by different nationalities or politicians. Good luck trying to pull one over a player or team the minister that is responsible for scholarships and school fundings are. And that is before any family stuff. For example in Poland, just last night. We have total lock down, but two of the ministers sons have winter break now, so an actual school team from a sports school got kicked out so here sons , turned in to sportsman by a ministerial decree two days before, could ride down the slopes. Our top female ball throw player, olympian with gold medals and multiple time world champion, has no sponsoring because the ruling party doesn't like her. And then you can go down in lower in to school and camps, where trainers promote their family members or decide , for different types of "gifts", who is going to get the scholarships and who is never going to make it in to a state run youth or adult sports ranking. And without ranking you can't be registered as a sports person, which means no healthcare, no funding etc.


Do you know how FIFA or MKOL functions, or any sports federation ? Of course rules are changed to make it easier for specific teams or players to win. Why do you think qualifications for olympics look the way they do? And american football has like an age long history of different coachs and teams influancing how the game is played just so their team has a higher chance of winning. And this is just small stuff comparing to coachs hiring local ultras to deal with clubs or players they don't want to play against.


Sorry but athletes/teams competing in the same league have all the same sets of rules. It's not like Bayern can play with 2 goal keepers or ignore the first yellow card (reference to SM dreads ) or concede a pre-game goal to the opponents because their "codex" gives them these special abilties. Rules are exactly the same for everyone.

If an athlete/team has access to more expensive/better equipment that has nothing to do with the rules of the game. The game's performances can be affected by that but rules are not. The poorest african football team plays the exact same game of Bayern, and if someone is better and wins everytime not only we have to accept it but we should also praise it.

In 40k factions play with very different sets of rules by intentional design, that's a huge difference with sports and that's why a fair comparison between the former and the latter cannot be made.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 13:02:55


Post by: addnid


 Blackie wrote:
Karol wrote:


That is not true. Go and try to put a complain against Norwegian players to the cross-country skiing commission and check what happens. You can be disqualifed for everything, but they can all be against.


Sorry but athletes/teams competing in the same league have all the same sets of rules. It's not like Bayern can play with 2 goal keepers or ignore the first yellow card (reference to SM dreads ) or concede a pre-game goal to the opponents because their "codex" gives them these special abilties. Rules are exactly the same for everyone.

If an athlete/team has access to more expensive/better equipment that has nothing to do with the rules of the game. The game's performances can be affected by that but rules are not. The poorest african football team plays the exact same game of Bayern, and if someone is better and wins everytime not only we have to accept it but we should also praise it.

In 40k factions play with very different sets of rules by intentional design, that's a huge difference with sports and that's why a fair comparison between the former and the latter cannot be made.


Blackie dakka says you are Italian. Why Bayern and not Juventus ? Maledetto !


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 13:38:35


Post by: Blackie


 addnid wrote:


Blackie dakka says you are Italian. Why Bayern and not Juventus ? Maledetto !


Because Karol referred to Bayern while debating his point.

Also because that team in black and white doesn't have my sympathy .


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 14:17:25


Post by: Unit1126PLL


I don't think 40k is fundamentally impossible to balance.

But you do have to have some restraint when designing armies.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: if GW were designing Team Yankee, you'd end up with games where FBI field agents (maybe with an allied Border Patrol team for their awesome jeeps) are fighting Israeli tank platoons with allied Armenian guerillas in Moscow.

And then people would say "It can't be balanced!". Which is correct, but the fault for that is on GW for making Codex: FBI for pitched battles against Codex: IDF.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 14:20:04


Post by: Tycho


I've said it before and I'll say it again: if GW were designing Team Yankee, you'd end up with games where FBI field agents (maybe with an allied Border Patrol team for their awesome jeeps) are fighting Israeli tank platoons with allied Armenian guerillas in Moscow.

And then people would say "It can't be balanced!". Which is correct, but the fault for that is on GW for making Codex: FBI for pitched battles against Codex: IDF.




This may be the most perfect example I've ever seen. Funny because it's true ...


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 14:25:56


Post by: kirotheavenger


 Unit1126PLL wrote:
I don't think 40k is fundamentally impossible to balance.

But you do have to have some restraint when designing armies.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: if GW were designing Team Yankee, you'd end up with games where FBI field agents (maybe with an allied Border Patrol team for their awesome jeeps) are fighting Israeli tank platoons with allied Armenian guerillas in Moscow.

And then people would say "It can't be balanced!". Which is correct, but the fault for that is on GW for making Codex: FBI for pitched battles against Codex: IDF.

Very true, so I think the best solution to this problem is to define the FBI as a sub-faction that can't be expected to perform well if left alone in anything but the smallest battles.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 14:29:39


Post by: Unit1126PLL


 kirotheavenger wrote:
 Unit1126PLL wrote:
I don't think 40k is fundamentally impossible to balance.

But you do have to have some restraint when designing armies.

I've said it before and I'll say it again: if GW were designing Team Yankee, you'd end up with games where FBI field agents (maybe with an allied Border Patrol team for their awesome jeeps) are fighting Israeli tank platoons with allied Armenian guerillas in Moscow.

And then people would say "It can't be balanced!". Which is correct, but the fault for that is on GW for making Codex: FBI for pitched battles against Codex: IDF.

Very true, so I think the best solution to this problem is to define the FBI as a sub-faction that can't be expected to perform well if left alone in anything but the smallest battles.


Don't look now, but this is how the game used to play way up until mid-5th edition.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 14:33:36


Post by: Tyel


I think this is back to making the perfect the enemy of the good.

Most people's issues are less "my FBI can't stand up to massed Israeli tanks". Its "I seem to pay 40 points for FBI agent and yet Mossad Agents have essentially the same stats but are 10 points less? Or have 3-5 extra special rules. Or both."

Whether or not you should spam FBI agents is another question to whether they are worth their points in their own context.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 14:37:16


Post by: Unit1126PLL


Tyel wrote:
I think this is back to making the perfect the enemy of the good.

Most people's issues are less "my FBI can't stand up to massed Israeli tanks". Its "I seem to pay 40 points for FBI agent and yet Mossad Agents have essentially the same stats but are 10 points less? Or have 3-5 extra special rules. Or both."

Whether or not you should spam FBI agents is another question to whether they are worth their points in their own context.


Well, yes, but the first step to balance is adequately scoping the game, IMO.

Fiddly bits like points aren't the be-all and end-all of balance, in my opinion (same as Jidmah). This is because, in my view, armies should be taken holistically - for example, an FBI agent might be more expensive than a Mossad agent because while they might provide the same "Fieldwork" buff, that buff goes further on American units rather than Israeli (or whatever).

But taking armies holistically is literally impossible when you expect the Codex: 9th Combined Arms Army to fight a tactical pitched battle against Codex: Yeomanry of the Tower of London.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 14:37:21


Post by: The_Grim_Angel


Do I expect 40k to be balanced?
Not only! It is something I actually demand, because in my opinion there isn't any fun in a game that gives me the feeling to win or loose due to the intrinsic superiority or inferiority of my army, not because I was a best or worst strategist of the other player.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 14:43:48


Post by: kirotheavenger


One inherent problem with this sort of scoping is that it's unrealistic to expect the FBI to be packing the sort of heavy anti-tank firepower you'd need to deal with an Israeli armoured company. Or god forbid someone is bringing their Royal Navy Destroyer Flotilla to the party, because GW gave those rules too.

I don't think there's anything wrong with having small factions that can't stand on their own. So relegating these factions to supplementary roles will allow GW to focus the game on a more reasonable scope.

It's sad that GW ever opened the pandora's box in the first place, just for the quick cash grab of shiny new faction sales.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 15:09:19


Post by: Slipspace


You definitely need to limit the scope more than GW currently has if you want to get better balance. There was a discussion involving Infinity a few pages back and one of the comments from someone was along the lines of "well, Infinity doesn't count because it's only a skirmish game". That kinda missed the point that the designers have kept the scope consistent and within the constraints of the core rules, allowing them to have fewer variables to balance. This is a good thing if you want a balanced game. The first place I'd start with 40k is to go back to the 3rd edition FOC, likely with a single superheavy and single flyer allowed. In reality I'd probably just remove those two unit types from the game as some of the biggest offenders when it comes to trying to balance things properly but let's assume we're trying to be somewhat realistic.

If you look back at 8th, a lot of the really bad examples of unbalanced lists came about from people spamming things that were underpointed. We had 5 Stormravens and Guilliman, 7 Hive Tyrants and 9 Plagueburst Crawlers backed up by tiny numbers of Swarms until GW came out with the rule of 3. Then we had things like Eldar armies with 7 planes, which forced GW to come out with rules allowing you to move over the bases of aircraft so people could actually interact with the game in any meaningful way against these armies. It was kind of amusing watching GW play whack-a-mole with these issues when they'd already had a solution that they threw out because some guy on the board decided it might stop someone buying that 4th Predator.

Then you need to make sure each faction can build a good TAC list and isn't forced into extreme skew territory by design. I don't have a problem with designating certain armies as auxiliaries or allies rather than full-blown armies as long as that's made clear to people. The old Daemonhunters Codex which expanded the Grey Knights from their single Terminator squad they had in 2n edition had a designer's note saying that while it was possible to build a GK army using the Codex it wasn't recommended. If GW really want to keep their various mini-factions around I'd like to see more of them handled in that way.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 15:20:18


Post by: kirotheavenger


I think Super Heavies should stay, you could have something like a Super Heavy takes up 2 or even 3 Heavy Support slots for example.
Flyers are more complicated. Back in 6/7th being a Flyer was a big deal, because it meant you were only hit on 6s. Nowadays though, they're just -1 to hit. Which isn't a huge deal, especially now that modifiers are capped at 1, stacking negatives is not longer a problem.
So if we keep Flyers in roughly the same place they are now, I don't see why they can't be in the game or even that heavily restricted. Although I do think Flyers should be squishier than battletanks when they get hit.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 15:22:12


Post by: VladimirHerzog


 kirotheavenger wrote:
I think Super Heavies should stay, you could have something like a Super Heavy takes up 2 or even 3 Heavy Support slots for example.
Flyers are more complicated. Back in 6/7th being a Flyer was a big deal, because it meant you were only hit on 6s. Nowadays though, they're just -1 to hit. Which isn't a huge deal, especially now that modifiers are capped at 1, stacking negatives is not longer a problem.
So if we keep Flyers in roughly the same place they are now, I don't see why they can't be in the game or even that heavily restricted. Although I do think Flyers should be squishier than battletanks when they get hit.


the relevant flyers are just squishier, faster tanks with a -1 to hit, they can't even moveblock as well now.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 15:34:03


Post by: kirotheavenger


All the fliers I can think of (Valkyries, Stormravens and Stormhawks) are a standard T7/3+/10+W that a lot of tanks are.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 15:37:48


Post by: VladimirHerzog


 kirotheavenger wrote:
All the fliers I can think of (Valkyries, Stormravens and Stormhawks) are a standard T7/3+/10+W that a lot of tanks are.


I meant the eldar ones, which were the only relevant ones last time i checked. I barely ever see valks/storms and i assume these arent the flyers people are complaining about.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 15:40:51


Post by: kirotheavenger


Relevant to what? 8th edition tournaments maybe.
But that's exactly what we're trying to discuss solutions to right now.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 16:03:26


Post by: VladimirHerzog


 kirotheavenger wrote:
Relevant to what? 8th edition tournaments maybe.
But that's exactly what we're trying to discuss solutions to right now.


Thats the point i'm clumsily trying to make.

Flyers were abuseable in the past because of the maluses to hit they gave in various forms.
9th basically fixed all these problems to a point where the only difference between a regular tank and a flyer is the force org slot and the movement speed of the flyer.

This is why i think the focus on "fixing" flyers is irrelevant to the current state of the game and is a leftover from past editions.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 16:08:19


Post by: Rihgu


Doesn't Battletech have roughly the same scope as 40k? Infantry, Power armor, tanks, super heavy tanks, light super heavy walkers up to heavy super heavy walkers, helicopters, jets, etc?

I understand that game takes a lot more of an RPG approach to balance but I also do not read or hear a lot of complaints about it in the same sense as I hear about 40k. Granted, I could be totally off base here.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 16:18:36


Post by: Tyel


 Unit1126PLL wrote:
Fiddly bits like points aren't the be-all and end-all of balance, in my opinion (same as Jidmah). This is because, in my view, armies should be taken holistically - for example, an FBI agent might be more expensive than a Mossad agent because while they might provide the same "Fieldwork" buff, that buff goes further on American units rather than Israeli (or whatever).

But taking armies holistically is literally impossible when you expect the Codex: 9th Combined Arms Army to fight a tactical pitched battle against Codex: Yeomanry of the Tower of London.


Armies do have to be considered holistically - but I don't think that does make it impossible to consider.
Really unless you are dying in a ditch over things like the Inquisition, Sisters of Silence (aren't these annexed to Custodes now?), the only "outlier" is Knights.

I mean looking at WHFB, you had herohammer. Then cavhammer. Then in 8th you saw "hordes"->"monstrous creatures"->"chaff and spam dwellers".
This applied across all factions.

40k never seems to be [archetype]hammer.

Were Eldar Flyers overpowered? Yes. Why? Because given the stackable minuses to hit they were overcosted. Were all flyers overpowered? No. Many were considered rubbish. Was the Castellan overpowered? Yes I think so - again, you got too much for your points. Did it mean vehicles as a whole were? No, not really. Did SM2.0 make anyone else's elite infantry overpowered? No.

I think right now multimeltas (and multimelta cosplayers) are overpowered at the moment. Why? Because they are too good compared to everything else in the game - especially monsters and vehicles, but also non-horde infantry. You can shoot ork boys and its still not that bad - certainly not at the level of shooting a Leman Russ with unbuffed boltguns. They don't have any weaknesses at the points cost they are currently at.

You could change the rules or the points - but something has to give. Until it happens they are I think the major meta warping feature beyond "gotta go fast" - which stems from the primary objectives and needing to get on them ASAP, which applies to all factions.

If you bring an army full of tanks, and I could have brought some anti-tank units but didn't, I should be worse off. There are questions of *how* worse off - which is where you get debates of hard counters and soft counters - but that's to a degree a different matter than "this it top tier anti-tank, and this is bad anti-tank you shouldn't take" which is the main source of imbalance in 40k - and I feel has been in every edition.

You look at the placing armies, they are not really a skew. They are TAC. Its just they are all *good* - composed of units which are comparatively cheap for what they bring compared to hundreds of datasheets for the factions are in the game.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 16:39:50


Post by: FezzikDaBullgryn


I think GW's obligation to be up front about a purchase is hit or miss at best. It really depends on the sales person. My very first experience with 40k was 2 weeks before 8th dropped. I had no idea what an edition was, or what a faction was. I just knew this looked awesome and I wanted to get started.

I walked in to my local GW store, and said I wanted to get started with the hobby but I didn't know what was good or fun, but I thought the GK looked cool. Cut to an hour later and he's ringing me up for a 7th BRB, a GK codex, and a few boxes of Paladins and strikes, and an appropriate paint set, glue, snips, brushes, etc. I walk out of the store over 400 dollars lighter, and start assembling my minis. I quickly learn that 8th has been announced, and my recent book purchases are now invalid. I went back to the store and asked why he sold me books when he knew they were about to be invalidated. (I didn't care about the models) and he said "I wanted to help you get started playing the game as soon as possible, and we aren't allowed to know when new editions are coming out". This suffice to say put me off the hobby for a few months.

Cut to 3 weeks before 9th drops, around when Sisters was still hawtness, and I watched this guy sell a brand new player like me, a SM Codex, and SM supplement, a 8th BRB, and two boxes of Intercessors. This happens ALL the time. GW is under ZERO obligation to help you from being screwed over by their "releases". One of their corner stones until "legends" became a thing was that you can literally play anything GW ever released (Modelwise) and there will always be rules for it. Obviously this is factually not correct, or at best, misleading as hell.



Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 17:45:37


Post by: Insectum7


Rihgu wrote:
Doesn't Battletech have roughly the same scope as 40k? Infantry, Power armor, tanks, super heavy tanks, light super heavy walkers up to heavy super heavy walkers, helicopters, jets, etc?

I understand that game takes a lot more of an RPG approach to balance but I also do not read or hear a lot of complaints about it in the same sense as I hear about 40k. Granted, I could be totally off base here.


It's been a long time, but claims of Battletech "brokenness" usually came from Clans and custom built mechs. IIRC there were ways to abuse some of the other unit options like tanks as well.

*disclaimer: This information is about 25-30 years old. I have no idea how the game is now.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 18:23:41


Post by: Hecaton


FezzikDaBullgryn wrote:
I think GW's obligation to be up front about a purchase is hit or miss at best. It really depends on the sales person. My very first experience with 40k was 2 weeks before 8th dropped. I had no idea what an edition was, or what a faction was. I just knew this looked awesome and I wanted to get started.

I walked in to my local GW store, and said I wanted to get started with the hobby but I didn't know what was good or fun, but I thought the GK looked cool. Cut to an hour later and he's ringing me up for a 7th BRB, a GK codex, and a few boxes of Paladins and strikes, and an appropriate paint set, glue, snips, brushes, etc. I walk out of the store over 400 dollars lighter, and start assembling my minis. I quickly learn that 8th has been announced, and my recent book purchases are now invalid. I went back to the store and asked why he sold me books when he knew they were about to be invalidated. (I didn't care about the models) and he said "I wanted to help you get started playing the game as soon as possible, and we aren't allowed to know when new editions are coming out". This suffice to say put me off the hobby for a few months.

Cut to 3 weeks before 9th drops, around when Sisters was still hawtness, and I watched this guy sell a brand new player like me, a SM Codex, and SM supplement, a 8th BRB, and two boxes of Intercessors. This happens ALL the time. GW is under ZERO obligation to help you from being screwed over by their "releases". One of their corner stones until "legends" became a thing was that you can literally play anything GW ever released (Modelwise) and there will always be rules for it. Obviously this is factually not correct, or at best, misleading as hell.



The orders to do schiesty sales come down from the top.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 18:31:11


Post by: CommunistNapkin


FezzikDaBullgryn wrote:
I think GW's obligation to be up front about a purchase is hit or miss at best. It really depends on the sales person. My very first experience with 40k was 2 weeks before 8th dropped. I had no idea what an edition was, or what a faction was. I just knew this looked awesome and I wanted to get started.

I walked in to my local GW store, and said I wanted to get started with the hobby but I didn't know what was good or fun, but I thought the GK looked cool. Cut to an hour later and he's ringing me up for a 7th BRB, a GK codex, and a few boxes of Paladins and strikes, and an appropriate paint set, glue, snips, brushes, etc. I walk out of the store over 400 dollars lighter, and start assembling my minis. I quickly learn that 8th has been announced, and my recent book purchases are now invalid. I went back to the store and asked why he sold me books when he knew they were about to be invalidated. (I didn't care about the models) and he said "I wanted to help you get started playing the game as soon as possible, and we aren't allowed to know when new editions are coming out". This suffice to say put me off the hobby for a few months.

Cut to 3 weeks before 9th drops, around when Sisters was still hawtness, and I watched this guy sell a brand new player like me, a SM Codex, and SM supplement, a 8th BRB, and two boxes of Intercessors. This happens ALL the time. GW is under ZERO obligation to help you from being screwed over by their "releases". One of their corner stones until "legends" became a thing was that you can literally play anything GW ever released (Modelwise) and there will always be rules for it. Obviously this is factually not correct, or at best, misleading as hell.



Out of curiosity, I don't guess that the manager mentioned that GW was providing credits for folks who had bought new rulebooks/codexes in the months leading up to 8th edition, so that they could get new books for free? I run a FLGS and worth with GW regularly. All of my customers who bought books within like 60 days (it's been a few years so I can't quite remember. May have been 90 days?) of 8th edition being announced were given credit directly from GW (done through me) so that they could get their new books for free when they came out.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 19:00:51


Post by: ccs


FezzikDaBullgryn wrote:
I think GW's obligation to be up front about a purchase is hit or miss at best. It really depends on the sales person. My very first experience with 40k was 2 weeks before 8th dropped. I had no idea what an edition was, or what a faction was. I just knew this looked awesome and I wanted to get started.

I walked in to my local GW store, and said I wanted to get started with the hobby but I didn't know what was good or fun, but I thought the GK looked cool. Cut to an hour later and he's ringing me up for a 7th BRB, a GK codex, and a few boxes of Paladins and strikes, and an appropriate paint set, glue, snips, brushes, etc. I walk out of the store over 400 dollars lighter, and start assembling my minis. I quickly learn that 8th has been announced, and my recent book purchases are now invalid. I went back to the store and asked why he sold me books when he knew they were about to be invalidated. (I didn't care about the models) and he said "I wanted to help you get started playing the game as soon as possible, and we aren't allowed to know when new editions are coming out". This suffice to say put me off the hobby for a few months.

Cut to 3 weeks before 9th drops, around when Sisters was still hawtness, and I watched this guy sell a brand new player like me, a SM Codex, and SM supplement, a 8th BRB, and two boxes of Intercessors. This happens ALL the time. GW is under ZERO obligation to help you from being screwed over by their "releases". One of their corner stones until "legends" became a thing was that you can literally play anything GW ever released (Modelwise) and there will always be rules for it. Obviously this is factually not correct, or at best, misleading as hell.


1) So why did you, the experienced player who's been fleeced exactly like this, just stand by & watch it happen? YOU knew when 9th was arriving.

2) And no, it's never been true that you can use anything ever released as there'll be rules for it. Even with Legends it's not true.
As exhibit #1? I present you .... the Squats.
Here in 9th? Oh sure, I could use most of them as short Guardsmen. Or Nurglings, or Knights, or anything else my opponent will agree to. But the only editions I've been able to run them as Squats is RT & 2e.
Or how about my Las/Plas Razorback turrets? Where are these for 9e?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 19:54:30


Post by: vict0988


If there is a number of FBI agents out there that can compete with a tank then they can play ball. 6s always wound. Knight armies are still pretty lame and often cause bad games, but that is because it is a skew list.
Slipspace wrote:
You definitely need to limit the scope more than GW currently has if you want to get better balance.

No, nerf one undercosted or buff one overcosted unit and then the game has better balance, no need to change the scope of anything to improve balance. Perfect is the enemy of good and no matter how much you narrow the scope of the game GW can still say Guardsmen should cost 1PL and Cultists should cost 2PL and if those PLs do not line up with the value those units have in the game then the game is still going to be unbalanced even if those are the only two units in the game.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 21:19:50


Post by: balmong7


Rihgu wrote:
Doesn't Battletech have roughly the same scope as 40k? Infantry, Power armor, tanks, super heavy tanks, light super heavy walkers up to heavy super heavy walkers, helicopters, jets, etc?

I understand that game takes a lot more of an RPG approach to balance but I also do not read or hear a lot of complaints about it in the same sense as I hear about 40k. Granted, I could be totally off base here.


The difference is that in battletech all units can be taken by any faction. So there aren't any factions that just don't get to take certain mechs or aren't allowed to have infantry. Players may add those restrictions themselves in order to better emulate the fluff, but the rules don't force it.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 21:26:47


Post by: Tycho


EDIT - Nevermind


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 21:48:34


Post by: Rihgu


balmong7 wrote:
Rihgu wrote:
Doesn't Battletech have roughly the same scope as 40k? Infantry, Power armor, tanks, super heavy tanks, light super heavy walkers up to heavy super heavy walkers, helicopters, jets, etc?

I understand that game takes a lot more of an RPG approach to balance but I also do not read or hear a lot of complaints about it in the same sense as I hear about 40k. Granted, I could be totally off base here.


The difference is that in battletech all units can be taken by any faction. So there aren't any factions that just don't get to take certain mechs or aren't allowed to have infantry. Players may add those restrictions themselves in order to better emulate the fluff, but the rules don't force it.


That doesn't impact the scope, though. I brought it up because a lot of posters are saying the scope of what 40k covers is too much for the game to be reasonably balanced.
I think that as long as each faction has ways of meaningfully dealing with each tier of scope the game can be balanced. What I mean by that is not every faction needs light infantry, heavy infantry, light vehicles, heavy vehicles, flyers, etc. But they do need something that can fight all of those targets.
So I think a game can exist with both grots and warhound titans and be balanced but I don't think a game where 1 faction has only grots and 1 faction has only warhound titans can be balanced, if that makes sense. Give those grots void grenades though... now we're talking!


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 22:26:21


Post by: Slayer-Fan123


Rihgu wrote:
balmong7 wrote:
Rihgu wrote:
Doesn't Battletech have roughly the same scope as 40k? Infantry, Power armor, tanks, super heavy tanks, light super heavy walkers up to heavy super heavy walkers, helicopters, jets, etc?

I understand that game takes a lot more of an RPG approach to balance but I also do not read or hear a lot of complaints about it in the same sense as I hear about 40k. Granted, I could be totally off base here.


The difference is that in battletech all units can be taken by any faction. So there aren't any factions that just don't get to take certain mechs or aren't allowed to have infantry. Players may add those restrictions themselves in order to better emulate the fluff, but the rules don't force it.

So I think a game can exist with both grots and warhound titans and be balanced but I don't think a game where 1 faction has only grots and 1 faction has only warhound titans can be balanced, if that makes sense. Give those grots void grenades though... now we're talking!

And I made this point before too. Just because Imperial Guard and Tau are known to be terrible at melee it doesn't mean their melee options should automatically be garbage just because. As well, just because Marines aren't known for artillery it doesn't mean Whirlwind variants should be terrible (TFC slowly got better as time progressed)


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/13 23:50:30


Post by: Slayer6


Do I expect 40k to be balanced?

No.

Why? Because imbalance sells more than balance... You wouldn't buy a useless unit to play (and lose) with, you would buy one that you think will win...


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 00:36:31


Post by: VladimirHerzog


 Slayer6 wrote:
Do I expect 40k to be balanced?

No.

Why? Because imbalance sells more than balance... You wouldn't buy a useless unit to play (and lose) with, you would buy one that you think will win...


damn, thats a big assumption on your part.

Tell that to my :

Warp talons
Raptors
Wyches
Wraith Host (purchased before PA)
Thousand sons (purchased before PA)


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 00:44:01


Post by: Blastaar


 Slayer6 wrote:
Do I expect 40k to be balanced?

No.

Why? Because imbalance sells more than balance... You wouldn't buy a useless unit to play (and lose) with, you would buy one that you think will win...



There is some truth to this in video games- LOL is designed to frustrate you into a "one more match, I need a win" mindset, and to sell RP, with which to purpose one of the handful of presently viable champions.. Every month they release a new champion that is always broken. There was one named Ecco that took them six months to fix, despite many and loud complaints.

However- that is an extreme waste of resources if kits are produced for the purpose of NOT selling. GW rules writers are not competent enough to intentionally imbalance the game.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 07:03:41


Post by: The_Grim_Angel


 Slayer6 wrote:
Do I expect 40k to be balanced?

No.

Why? Because imbalance sells more than balance... You wouldn't buy a useless unit to play (and lose) with, you would buy one that you think will win...

Are you sure?
Among the people I know nobody did never said: «I need a new army because this sucks». They preferred stop to play; also the people with the strongest armies.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 07:20:09


Post by: Jidmah


The_Grim_Angel wrote:
 Slayer6 wrote:
Do I expect 40k to be balanced?

No.

Why? Because imbalance sells more than balance... You wouldn't buy a useless unit to play (and lose) with, you would buy one that you think will win...

Are you sure?
Among the people I know nobody did never said: «I need a new army because this sucks». They preferred stop to play; also the people with the strongest armies.


And you would be right. It's well established that games draw more players, and thus more sales, if the game is more balanced because more people enjoy playing balanced games.
Especially in miniature gaming, where people have to build and paint their expensive sets first, a stable near-balanced state will generate a lot more sales than catering to the few meta-chasers who actually keep up with all the releases. A clear indicator of this would be the massive drop of tournament attendance and community activity after the Iron Hands supplement dropped.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 07:55:19


Post by: Not Online!!!


 Jidmah wrote:
The_Grim_Angel wrote:
 Slayer6 wrote:
Do I expect 40k to be balanced?

No.

Why? Because imbalance sells more than balance... You wouldn't buy a useless unit to play (and lose) with, you would buy one that you think will win...

Are you sure?
Among the people I know nobody did never said: «I need a new army because this sucks». They preferred stop to play; also the people with the strongest armies.


And you would be right. It's well established that games draw more players, and thus more sales, if the game is more balanced because more people enjoy playing balanced games.
Especially in miniature gaming, where people have to build and paint their expensive sets first, a stable near-balanced state will generate a lot more sales than catering to the few meta-chasers who actually keep up with all the releases. A clear indicator of this would be the massive drop of tournament attendance and community activity after the Iron Hands supplement dropped.


See, however, GW is in many ways a closed ecosystem. That means in conjunction with their defacto monoply through IP / Copyright law, that they can search their point of optimal profit not on demand but on production cost. Basically , like Videogames GW can and imo does, whalehunting.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 08:04:12


Post by: Blackie


 VladimirHerzog wrote:
 Slayer6 wrote:
Do I expect 40k to be balanced?

No.

Why? Because imbalance sells more than balance... You wouldn't buy a useless unit to play (and lose) with, you would buy one that you think will win...


damn, thats a big assumption on your part.

Tell that to my :

Warp talons
Raptors
Wyches
Wraith Host (purchased before PA)
Thousand sons (purchased before PA)


But it's true. All those units you mentioned, or even the entire TS faction, don't seel because people want to expolit their abilities on the battle field. They may sell because someone likes the models or their style of playing.

If a unit is considered "needed", it'll sell a lot. There's a large portion of players who are mostly into gaming rather than the hobby part.

Which is why I'm a strong advocate for low-mid tier SM. They'll always sell a lot because they're the favorite faction of the fanbase, and in fact primaris sold a lot even at the beginning of 8th when firsborn were still superior, but if they weren't competitive those who play them only because they're good will switch to other factions, making mirror matches against imperium forces less frequent.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 08:20:10


Post by: Slayer-Fan123


Imagine being am advocate for an army to be garbage LOL you're full of gak


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 08:48:27


Post by: kirotheavenger


Most businesses have started chasing "whales" rather than supporting the wider player base.

And in my experience a rather large subset of the community can be described as "whales". Regularly dropping large amounts of money on whatever the new hotness is.
Hence GW's priority is on generating new hotness. This doesn't always translate into better rules competitively, but trying to make every new unit have cooler and more interesting rules often results in more powerful rules. This is exactly what drove the obscene formation powercreep in 7th.
I'm sure GW was 100% serious about "Forge the Narrative". It just ended up as the perfect storm for clobbering the absolute gak out of anyone that actually tried.

In fact, this attitude has become so pervasive I regularly see any complaints about the constant churn of new hotness addressed along the lines of "if you can't afford it you shouldn't play".
Excuse me? If I wanted a hobby that was just waving my massive <wallet> in people's faces I'd get a boat.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 09:04:57


Post by: Jidmah


Not Online!!! wrote:
See, however, GW is in many ways a closed ecosystem. That means in conjunction with their defacto monoply through IP / Copyright law, that they can search their point of optimal profit not on demand but on production cost. Basically , like Videogames GW can and imo does, whalehunting.


In games that require multiple players to play, when you lose players, you lose whales as well. If you gain players, you also gain whales.

It's also worth noting that many whales aren't competitive players - see the titan owner's club, for example.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 09:13:34


Post by: kirotheavenger


I agree that imbalance (or just in general a sub-par game) can result in GW losing whales, this doesn't happen at an equivalent rate to which it encourages whales to spend more money.
40k has reached a size and popularity such that it's self-sustaining. If you want to regularly play a wargame, for most people the *only* option is 40k, because the community for any other games isn't large enough.
I've had to diversify into like 4 other games to even start to sustain 1/game, if I played 40k I'd be able to find an opponent daily if I wanted.

The key factor driving GW's business is that new hotness drives sales more than well balanced, fun, and engaging rules will.
So they focus on driving new hotness with minimal consideration for the latter.
Which is a crying shame, but so long as GW are the industry giants and 40k is the largest driving force behind that, with large sections of the community worshipping their every move, this won't change.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 09:16:08


Post by: Jidmah


From the few whales I know personally, I have found that they are people who don't really care about their investment. They'd drop thousands of euros worth of models without batting an eye and invest into another game when it brings them more enjoyment, and they'd drop that game when 40k is awesome again.

And by "other game" I don't necessarily mean wargames. Jumping from MtG to 40k to eve online to path of exile to some mobile game doesn't really matter when you aren't emotionally bound to this hobby.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 09:17:40


Post by: Not Online!!!


 Jidmah wrote:
Not Online!!! wrote:
See, however, GW is in many ways a closed ecosystem. That means in conjunction with their defacto monoply through IP / Copyright law, that they can search their point of optimal profit not on demand but on production cost. Basically , like Videogames GW can and imo does, whalehunting.


In games that require multiple players to play, when you lose players, you lose whales as well. If you gain players, you also gain whales.

It's also worth noting that many whales aren't competitive players - see the titan owner's club, for example.


Also, correct, i didn't say however GW was smart about it didn't i.
Further a lot of the older hobbiests and potential longterm collectors can also be rather easily monetised with Nostalgia units/ models, Limited editions etc.
GW attempts to get both and often therefore either loses those that want to play due to the balance becoming so untenable for x faction that people drop out en masse.




Automatically Appended Next Post:
 kirotheavenger wrote:
I agree that imbalance (or just in general a sub-par game) can result in GW losing whales, this doesn't happen at an equivalent rate to which it encourages whales to spend more money.
40k has reached a size and popularity such that it's self-sustaining. If you want to regularly play a wargame, for most people the *only* option is 40k, because the community for any other games isn't large enough.
I've had to diversify into like 4 other games to even start to sustain 1/game, if I played 40k I'd be able to find an opponent daily if I wanted.

The key factor driving GW's business is that new hotness drives sales more than well balanced, fun, and engaging rules will.
So they focus on driving new hotness with minimal consideration for the latter.
Which is a crying shame, but so long as GW are the industry giants and 40k is the largest driving force behind that, with large sections of the community worshipping their every move, this won't change.


It's funny, that hegemonic position collapsed over here, it's still by far one of the most played games, however a lot of people took it badly what GW did with WHFB and also many were not happy with 7th /6th ed which made the sales plummet, did diversify the games though in my FLGS, for the better imo.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 09:26:49


Post by: Jidmah


Not Online!!! wrote:
Further a lot of the older hobbiests and potential longterm collectors can also be rather easily monetised with Nostalgia units/ models, Limited editions etc.

They also suck at this. I totally bought the red gobbo two years ago, but this year? A nob without gear and an ammo runt? Seriously? The only thing more bland I could think of is "slugga boy seen on a book once". At least make them named characters with unique rules like you do for all the imperium nobodies FFS.
Same for the collector edition's. Either they cost an army and a leg, or you just get a pile of worthless junk. If they had released a Saga of the Beast or War of the Spider faction specific edition with an alternate cover for my factions, some dice and an upgrade pack for the datacards, I'd totally have bought it at twice the price.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 09:33:37


Post by: Not Online!!!


 Jidmah wrote:
Not Online!!! wrote:
Further a lot of the older hobbiests and potential longterm collectors can also be rather easily monetised with Nostalgia units/ models, Limited editions etc.

They also suck at this. I totally bought the red gobbo two years ago, but this year? A nob without gear and an ammo runt? Seriously? The only thing more bland I could think of is "slugga boy seen on a book once". At least make them named characters with unique rules like you do for all the imperium nobodies FFS.
Same for the collector edition's. Either they cost an army and a leg, or you just get a pile of worthless junk. If they had released a Saga of the Beast or War of the Spider faction specific edition with an alternate cover for my factions, some dice and an upgrade pack for the datacards, I'd totally have bought it at twice the price.


TBF the community often makes it really easy to get away with the most minimal effort in these "special editions" , and "most minimal"is cheap to make jid, it's all about those production cost.

Is it smart or particullary enticing for the hobbiests with some higher standards? na not really, but for the vast part of the community these things seem to be good enough.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 09:37:21


Post by: Da Boss


There were some comparisons to MtG and computer games earlier on, and some discussion of "skew" lists.

I think the problem with those comparisons is nothing to do with complexity, but rather to do with set up time.

Setting up to play a game of MtG takes what, 2 minutes? You gotta shuffle your deck basically? And then playing a game takes max half an hour? So if you run an extreme deck in Magic and my deck is a poor match up to that, well, cool, I get stomped over half an hour and I learn something. It's not so bad. And you can play a game of magic on any flat surface, so you can play pretty much anywhere.

GW games, even leaving out all the time spent making and painting minis, involve transporting these delicate models to a particular location, laying out terrain and then deploying your dudes. That alone probably takes longer than the average game of MtG. Then you actually play, and maybe an hour later you are finished getting your arse handed to you by a "skew" list or whatever. It feels way worse, because you just wasted (conservatively) three times as much time to learn that lesson. Not to mention the emotional attachment to the minis you spent time assembling and painting only to see them wiped off the board before they even got to do anything.

This is a pretty negative experience and you have to have a very particular attitude to find it amusing. A lot of people don't have that kind of time to spend. Same argument applies to computer games, a round is easy to log into and only lasts a short amount of time. If you get beat, you can be back in the game quickly, and each iteration does not take that long so you can at least enjoy learning.

That is why having a Force Org chart that constrains what you can bring to the table is a good idea. It helps to put a broader structure on the game that limits the sort of skew you can have. It gives you a better chance that what you've brought will broadly match up to what your opponent brought and you will be able to have a fun game.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 09:43:15


Post by: Jidmah


 Da Boss wrote:
There were some comparisons to MtG and computer games earlier on, and some discussion of "skew" lists.

I think the problem with those comparisons is nothing to do with complexity, but rather to do with set up time.

Setting up to play a game of MtG takes what, 2 minutes? You gotta shuffle your deck basically? And then playing a game takes max half an hour? So if you run an extreme deck in Magic and my deck is a poor match up to that, well, cool, I get stomped over half an hour and I learn something. It's not so bad. And you can play a game of magic on any flat surface, so you can play pretty much anywhere.

GW games, even leaving out all the time spent making and painting minis, involve transporting these delicate models to a particular location, laying out terrain and then deploying your dudes. That alone probably takes longer than the average game of MtG. Then you actually play, and maybe an hour later you are finished getting your arse handed to you by a "skew" list or whatever. It feels way worse, because you just wasted (conservatively) three times as much time to learn that lesson. Not to mention the emotional attachment to the minis you spent time assembling and painting only to see them wiped off the board before they even got to do anything.

This is a pretty negative experience and you have to have a very particular attitude to find it amusing. A lot of people don't have that kind of time to spend. Same argument applies to computer games, a round is easy to log into and only lasts a short amount of time. If you get beat, you can be back in the game quickly, and each iteration does not take that long so you can at least enjoy learning.

But shouldn't that mean that GW has to put more effort into making every single game enjoyable, not less?

That is why having a Force Org chart that constrains what you can bring to the table is a good idea. It helps to put a broader structure on the game that limits the sort of skew you can have. It gives you a better chance that what you've brought will broadly match up to what your opponent brought and you will be able to have a fun game.

I don't really get this leap in logic. Whether you limit the game to a FOC (which really is the same as a patrol/battalion) or not has little to no impact on the ability to balance the game or on building skew lists.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 09:52:25


Post by: Slipspace


 Da Boss wrote:
There were some comparisons to MtG and computer games earlier on, and some discussion of "skew" lists.

I think the problem with those comparisons is nothing to do with complexity, but rather to do with set up time.

Setting up to play a game of MtG takes what, 2 minutes? You gotta shuffle your deck basically? And then playing a game takes max half an hour? So if you run an extreme deck in Magic and my deck is a poor match up to that, well, cool, I get stomped over half an hour and I learn something. It's not so bad. And you can play a game of magic on any flat surface, so you can play pretty much anywhere.

GW games, even leaving out all the time spent making and painting minis, involve transporting these delicate models to a particular location, laying out terrain and then deploying your dudes. That alone probably takes longer than the average game of MtG. Then you actually play, and maybe an hour later you are finished getting your arse handed to you by a "skew" list or whatever. It feels way worse, because you just wasted (conservatively) three times as much time to learn that lesson. Not to mention the emotional attachment to the minis you spent time assembling and painting only to see them wiped off the board before they even got to do anything.

This is a pretty negative experience and you have to have a very particular attitude to find it amusing. A lot of people don't have that kind of time to spend. Same argument applies to computer games, a round is easy to log into and only lasts a short amount of time. If you get beat, you can be back in the game quickly, and each iteration does not take that long so you can at least enjoy learning.

That is why having a Force Org chart that constrains what you can bring to the table is a good idea. It helps to put a broader structure on the game that limits the sort of skew you can have. It gives you a better chance that what you've brought will broadly match up to what your opponent brought and you will be able to have a fun game.


I completely agree. I mentioned earlier that if you want to balance the game you should probably start by restricting its scope in some meaningful way, likely starting with going back to the FOC. That's not because I think it's literally impossible to balance a game that allows you to take armies full of tanks, or Knights, or Grots, or a more TAC-style force. It's because I think it's practically much more difficult to do to the point where it's more beneficial to make those structural changes to the game at the outset. The FOC also acted as a brilliant guide for people building their armies as it indicated what a balanced, effective army should look like. GW didn't always get their own balance correct, of course, but that doesn't mean the approach was bad.

The time investment is a big deal and a real problem. I've seen 40k players get really disheartened after their lovingly built and painted army gets slaughtered for a couple of hours, having also spent 30 minutes setting up the game. At the same time, I've seen similar styles of beatings for new players in X-Wing but the much quicker set-up and "build" time in that game ended up being an encouragement for them to try something different in their next game, which was often immediately after their initial beating. Imbalance has a powerful psychological effect, especially on new players, and that effect is magnified by the amount of time they've spent on the models as well as the time the game itself takes.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 09:54:26


Post by: kirotheavenger


The idea behind the FOC is that building a skew list would become impossible, as you cannot physically fit enough of anything to make it skew.
You are, in effect, forced to take a balanced TAC list as that's all that will fit within the confines of the FOC.

Personally I don't think the old FOC achieved this particularly effectively, as a units classification really had very little to do with actual tabletop performance.
But it's a solid concept.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 09:55:18


Post by: Not Online!!!


 Jidmah wrote:

But shouldn't that mean that GW has to put more effort into making every single game enjoyable, not less?



Critical mass...
as allready described.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 10:00:09


Post by: Slipspace


 kirotheavenger wrote:
The idea behind the FOC is that building a skew list would become impossible, as you cannot physically fit enough of anything to make it skew.
You are, in effect, forced to take a balanced TAC list as that's all that will fit within the confines of the FOC.

Personally I don't think the old FOC achieved this particularly effectively, as a units classification really had very little to do with actual tabletop performance.
But it's a solid concept.


I think WHFB's system was better. That classified units, broadly speaking, into power levels. You had Lords - the most powerful characters - and Heroes - lesser characters. Then you had Core, Special and Rare which had progressively better quality units in it. Many armies could only take heavy cavalry via the Special or Rare slot, for example. The Special and Rare categories also included more exotic stuff like monsters or war machines but it was generally sorted by quality (or at least GW's idea of quality). So basic cannons and stone throwers were often Special while weird things like organ guns were Rare.

The problem with 40k is those unit distinctions don't really exist beyond mapping Troops to Core. Some armies could differentiate characters into broad power levels but the rest of the system is often quite messy, as we can see with the SM Elite section containing Servitors and Scouts. It might be an interesting exercise to take an army and try to map its units to those categories though.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 10:26:29


Post by: Tyel


I completely agree that when games of 40k take 3~ hours (or more to play) - you shouldn't have the same "I'm completely screwed 3 minutes in" you can have in things like MTG. There is a fundamental difference to games which can last less than 10 minutes and you can just break out another deck and go again.

Which is why I think 40k should be a game of soft counters, not "X destroys Y, gets destroyed by Z". Certain builds should have advantage over others (antitank->Tanks, Anti flyers->Flyers, Antiinfantry->Infantry etc) - but not ludicrously so. (I.E. not the current state of multimeltas.)

But this idea that restoring the old FOC - or 40k's core/special/rare would have any impact on this is hard to square.

Because as an example, someone bringing say a wall of Leman Russ today *is not a problem*. Its a skew but because Leman Russ are just not very good, who cares? By contrast someone bringing a optimised Harlequins/Daemons/Sisters/Marines *is* - because those units are too good/too cheap compared to other lists, and for the most part they'd slot into these brackets easily.

Again, the issue of "skew" in 40k is relatively small when compared with "this stuff is too good when compared to the same points worth of that stuff". Someone running 120 Acolytes in GSC for example is a "skew" - recognising that this single unit is better than everything else in the codex (before any of the recent points reductions). This is a problem of bad codex design/point allocations (and, tbf, would still be permissible under almost any FOC/points allocation system.)

Someone running 2-3 Marine characters, 3~ troops, some dreads, some inceptors and/or some vanguard/bladeguard isn't obviously a skew. Its just "the efficient stuff". Ditto for say a Sisters list which has a few characters, some min sized troops, some Repentia, Celestians and Retributors.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 10:34:20


Post by: shortymcnostrill


I think it'd be good to decouple unit balance from "what I bring should be able to beat whatever you bring", as these are two separate things.

The most feelsbad matter for me, balance wise, is the gap in power between units with similar roles in different armies. This is something I have no agency over when building my force, apart from playing another army. "You lose because your codex sucks" is not fun.

Although I'd be happy to see the other issue addressed in some way too; in my (casual) group I face an all-vehicle army, a fast horde infantry army and a dark angels player focussing on bringing the most durable multi-wound, inv save stuff they can. And then there's me, trying to build a tac list that can somehow handle all of this and not simply have the effective parts for the match-up singled out and ganked asap.

But then again, I wouldn't want my standard infantry easily killing tanks ("balanced"), and I wouldn't want to limit my opponent's or (my own) ability to play a force they want to play. I don't know how I'd solve this one.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 11:58:32


Post by: thegreatchimp


True balance in a tabletop game is something to be aspired to, but is unattainable. As a previous poster mentioned, even chess isn't balanced, with white having a 55% win rate. That's a game with only 6 different unit types, and only 64 possible positions on the board.

Tabletop games have to account for dozens / hundreds of units, each with dozens of varying compositions and loadouts. That's before we even get into synergies, buffing, and random events.

Points values are a "net of assurance" for players, nothing more. Even if one somehow managed to account for all the above factors, we have the fact that any given unit is stronger against certain units, and weaker against others. If your opponent brings plenty of tanks, ant-tank units are going to very effective, statistically speaking. If he brings none at all, they will underperform.

Then we have the board itself, with an infinite number of variations, and dozens of possible scenarios which completely change victory conditions. A unit that receives bonuses for being in forest terrain is going to be more effective on a heavily forested board than an urban one. Even if we adhered to complex terrain generating algorithms, the individual terrain pieces on each board will differ in density dimensions and positioning.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 12:05:42


Post by: Da Boss


There really should be a disclaimer at the start of the thread that we all understand that perfect balance is unattainable and are talking about improving balance or having "close enough" balance.

And Jidmah, absolutely, what I was saying was not an argument for GW to have worse balance. Just that it was even more severe than initially pointed out in comparison to those games because poor balance also feels worse in GW games than in those ones. I did express myself badly though so I can see why you would have thought I meant something else, sorry about that!

As to "Y FOC tho", well, of course it can still be unbalanced if the units are really badly designed. That definitely happened at various points in the past because GW has terrible designers who don't care about the game and does not do quality control.

But it is easier to balance the game if there is at least a framework for force composition that gives you a somewhat constrained possibility space to design for. At the moment, it is just a more challenging job to design for all the different forces.

However, I think FOC will never come back, because the game has moved past it in a way that means that bringing it back would feth over a large number of players and mean their collections were no longer playable. And I just don't see GW doing that, and having had chunks of my stuff invalidated over the years, I don't support that.

And if you're gonna have to design to balance for absolutely every combination because of that, there is probably no point in having a FOC in the game for some other game mode, because the point is the holistically balance taking the FOC into account.

I thought it was a pretty terrible decision to get rid of it back in the day, motivated in that specific case by a desire to sell more stuff, and I think it was bad for the game ultimately.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 12:24:23


Post by: Just Tony


 Da Boss wrote:
However, I think FOC will never come back...


Which means there will never be true balance and the game will most assuredly be a game of pay to win, plunk down for the new hotness, delete and get the NEW new hotness when the old new hotness is obsolete.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 12:28:21


Post by: Blackie


shortymcnostrill wrote:


Although I'd be happy to see the other issue addressed in some way too; in my (casual) group I face an all-vehicle army, a fast horde infantry army and a dark angels player focussing on bringing the most durable multi-wound, inv save stuff they can. And then there's me, trying to build a tac list that can somehow handle all of this and not simply have the effective parts for the match-up singled out and ganked asap.

But then again, I wouldn't want my standard infantry easily killing tanks ("balanced"), and I wouldn't want to limit my opponent's or (my own) ability to play a force they want to play. I don't know how I'd solve this one.


If you play only vs optimized skew lists it's very hard, if not flat out impossible, to build a TAC list and expect to compete with your opponents. Unless your army is overpowered to the core.

When you have access only to a very selected player base and those players refuse or maybe can't change their lists frequently it has always been hard to get balanced games of 40k. That's why I always suggest players who mostly (if not entirely) play within a restricted pool of friends to play with up to 50-75% of the players' collections: substantial changes to organize more balanced games would be immediately possible this way.


Automatically Appended Next Post:
 Just Tony wrote:
 Da Boss wrote:
However, I think FOC will never come back...


Which means there will never be true balance and the game will most assuredly be a game of pay to win, plunk down for the new hotness, delete and get the NEW new hotness when the old new hotness is obsolete.


40k has been unbalanced in the past, even with the the FOC in play.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 12:36:43


Post by: FezzikDaBullgryn


ccs wrote:
FezzikDaBullgryn wrote:
I think GW's obligation to be up front about a purchase is hit or miss at best. It really depends on the sales person. My very first experience with 40k was 2 weeks before 8th dropped. I had no idea what an edition was, or what a faction was. I just knew this looked awesome and I wanted to get started.

I walked in to my local GW store, and said I wanted to get started with the hobby but I didn't know what was good or fun, but I thought the GK looked cool. Cut to an hour later and he's ringing me up for a 7th BRB, a GK codex, and a few boxes of Paladins and strikes, and an appropriate paint set, glue, snips, brushes, etc. I walk out of the store over 400 dollars lighter, and start assembling my minis. I quickly learn that 8th has been announced, and my recent book purchases are now invalid. I went back to the store and asked why he sold me books when he knew they were about to be invalidated. (I didn't care about the models) and he said "I wanted to help you get started playing the game as soon as possible, and we aren't allowed to know when new editions are coming out". This suffice to say put me off the hobby for a few months.

Cut to 3 weeks before 9th drops, around when Sisters was still hawtness, and I watched this guy sell a brand new player like me, a SM Codex, and SM supplement, a 8th BRB, and two boxes of Intercessors. This happens ALL the time. GW is under ZERO obligation to help you from being screwed over by their "releases". One of their corner stones until "legends" became a thing was that you can literally play anything GW ever released (Modelwise) and there will always be rules for it. Obviously this is factually not correct, or at best, misleading as hell.


1) So why did you, the experienced player who's been fleeced exactly like this, just stand by & watch it happen? YOU knew when 9th was arriving.

2) And no, it's never been true that you can use anything ever released as there'll be rules for it. Even with Legends it's not true.
As exhibit #1? I present you .... the Squats.
Here in 9th? Oh sure, I could use most of them as short Guardsmen. Or Nurglings, or Knights, or anything else my opponent will agree to. But the only editions I've been able to run them as Squats is RT & 2e.
Or how about my Las/Plas Razorback turrets? Where are these for 9e?


1. Because the GW rep was somewhat dracconian in his attempts to usher out people who didn't pimp the brand. If you brought in non-gw models, banned, if you brought in non gw terrain, banned, if you we caught actively dissuading a sale or interfering in the business - Banned. It's not uncommon. GW runs their stores like jerks. The guy was fired after 9th dropped, so moot point.


Automatically Appended Next Post:
 CommunistNapkin wrote:
FezzikDaBullgryn wrote:
I think GW's obligation to be up front about a purchase is hit or miss at best. It really depends on the sales person. My very first experience with 40k was 2 weeks before 8th dropped. I had no idea what an edition was, or what a faction was. I just knew this looked awesome and I wanted to get started.

I walked in to my local GW store, and said I wanted to get started with the hobby but I didn't know what was good or fun, but I thought the GK looked cool. Cut to an hour later and he's ringing me up for a 7th BRB, a GK codex, and a few boxes of Paladins and strikes, and an appropriate paint set, glue, snips, brushes, etc. I walk out of the store over 400 dollars lighter, and start assembling my minis. I quickly learn that 8th has been announced, and my recent book purchases are now invalid. I went back to the store and asked why he sold me books when he knew they were about to be invalidated. (I didn't care about the models) and he said "I wanted to help you get started playing the game as soon as possible, and we aren't allowed to know when new editions are coming out". This suffice to say put me off the hobby for a few months.

Cut to 3 weeks before 9th drops, around when Sisters was still hawtness, and I watched this guy sell a brand new player like me, a SM Codex, and SM supplement, a 8th BRB, and two boxes of Intercessors. This happens ALL the time. GW is under ZERO obligation to help you from being screwed over by their "releases". One of their corner stones until "legends" became a thing was that you can literally play anything GW ever released (Modelwise) and there will always be rules for it. Obviously this is factually not correct, or at best, misleading as hell.



Out of curiosity, I don't guess that the manager mentioned that GW was providing credits for folks who had bought new rulebooks/codexes in the months leading up to 8th edition, so that they could get new books for free? I run a FLGS and worth with GW regularly. All of my customers who bought books within like 60 days (it's been a few years so I can't quite remember. May have been 90 days?) of 8th edition being announced were given credit directly from GW (done through me) so that they could get their new books for free when they came out.


Nope. All sales are final. Written on the store wall. This wasn't a local gamming store, this was a legit GW Brick and Mortar.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 12:42:48


Post by: Karol


You can add to this slow shipments to some parts fo the world. GW sent the last WFB books to our store, so late, that by the time they got here AoS became a thing, and people that ordered them didn't get refunds either. Although our store was not a GW one, so maybe that is the difference.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 13:45:54


Post by: kirotheavenger


The "refunds" thing was unique to the launch of 8th edition. Presumably because that invalidated EVERY book at once, GW felt that was too much negativity.

They didn't actually offer a refund per-say either, you store credit to the value of the books. So you could get more GW stuff, but they were keeping the money regardless.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 13:57:23


Post by: VladimirHerzog


 Blackie wrote:


But it's true. All those units you mentioned, or even the entire TS faction, don't seel because people want to expolit their abilities on the battle field. They may sell because someone likes the models or their style of playing.

If a unit is considered "needed", it'll sell a lot. There's a large portion of players who are mostly into gaming rather than the hobby part.

Which is why I'm a strong advocate for low-mid tier SM. They'll always sell a lot because they're the favorite faction of the fanbase, and in fact primaris sold a lot even at the beginning of 8th when firsborn were still superior, but if they weren't competitive those who play them only because they're good will switch to other factions, making mirror matches against imperium forces less frequent.


i think there is a false assumption that tournament/competitive players represent the majority of 40k. Its the complete opposite. Casual players that buy the models they think look good are the majority and these are the ones that don't necessarily buy models because of their performance on the tabletop.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 14:26:09


Post by: kirotheavenger


In my experience, although the majority of players aren't hyper competitive, the majority of players are playing to win as their primary goal.

It seems that my local groups (there's 4) are constantly either playing a tournament, or practising for a tournament.
Whenever a discussion of a new unit comes up, it's almost always about how good is it. Whether or not they're worth taking vs this other unit, and what buffs you can stack on them to get disgusting damage output.

"X is a really cool model, but Y is better, so I bought that" is very common.
Similarly, "I don't like the look of A, but they're so good I bought two anyway".


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 14:32:08


Post by: Jidmah


 Da Boss wrote:
As to "Y FOC tho", well, of course it can still be unbalanced if the units are really badly designed. That definitely happened at various points in the past because GW has terrible designers who don't care about the game and does not do quality control.

But it is easier to balance the game if there is at least a framework for force composition that gives you a somewhat constrained possibility space to design for. At the moment, it is just a more challenging job to design for all the different forces.


See, the reason why I wonder about this FOC thing is because I don't really think that it's more limiting than 9th edition's battalions.

In 4th and 5th you had to bring 1 HQ and 2 troops, and had the option to bring an additional 1 HQ, 4 troops and 3 of everything else. The game also was much more lenient with dedicated transports (battlewagons or landraiders come to mind) and stuff counting as troops through characters.

A patrol forces you to bring 1 HQ and 1 troop, but also limits you to 3 troops and one of everything else. A battalion is a lot like a FOC but forces you to bring 2 HQ and 3 troops and gets an extra HQ and 3 more elite slots in return (which is a weird, I admit). Brigades really just force you to bring a ton of stuff you don't want with little reason to do so. The only good way to get more slots is by sacrificing 2 or 3 CP to bring an additional detachment, but you are still bound by the rule of 3.

The FOC was clearly superior to 8th edition's "bring whatever you like!", but I really don't think that the FOC limits options any more efficiently than what we currently have. Most armies try to fit everything into battalions and rarely add more than an additional patrol detachment.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 15:15:48


Post by: Da Boss


Jidmah: Fair enough! I can see that POV.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 20:41:44


Post by: BertBert


 VladimirHerzog wrote:


i think there is a false assumption that tournament/competitive players represent the majority of 40k. Its the complete opposite. Casual players that buy the models they think look good are the majority and these are the ones that don't necessarily buy models because of their performance on the tabletop.


While there is really no way of knowing this, one could argue that diehard tournament players might have the largest proportion of whales amongst them. It's basically the premise for the whole idea that GW incentivises sales of certain armies/units through their consistently "bad" balancing, which again is not that easy to prove in the first place.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/14 21:41:59


Post by: balmong7


Rihgu wrote:


That doesn't impact the scope, though. I brought it up because a lot of posters are saying the scope of what 40k covers is too much for the game to be reasonably balanced.
I think that as long as each faction has ways of meaningfully dealing with each tier of scope the game can be balanced. What I mean by that is not every faction needs light infantry, heavy infantry, light vehicles, heavy vehicles, flyers, etc. But they do need something that can fight all of those targets.
So I think a game can exist with both grots and warhound titans and be balanced but I don't think a game where 1 faction has only grots and 1 faction has only warhound titans can be balanced, if that makes sense. Give those grots void grenades though... now we're talking!


I think it's a difference in how that scope is handled as well though. In 40k you have a squad between 5 and 10 tau firewarriors in a squad each an individual model equipped with individual weapons and equipment paid for individually in points. and they are fighting alongside a stormsurge that is also equipped with multiple different weapons each paid for individually.

In Battletech you have a single model with represents a full squad infantry and their transport vehicle and they are all assumed to be equipped with the same weapons and equipment which is all consolidated into a single attack stat. The only time granularity of equipment comes into play is with your mech loadouts.

When talking about balance and scope of play. If your scope is "Massive combined arms battles" its a lot easier to balance when only the "big" stuff like tanks/planes/mechs actually have choices in how they are equipped vs 40k where the equipment of the grot that gets killed before your first activation is taking up just as much planning consideration as the knight's second arm weapon.


Also, most people mentioning "scope" are referring to faction scope where things like "Inquisition" are considered just as viable of factions as "Astra Militarum" despite one literally being a planetary defense force and the other being a covert police force essentially. Remember in previous editions Harlequins were just units that eldar could take. So they didn't have to be balanced on a faction scale. They were just another tool in the toolbox.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/15 05:11:44


Post by: Just Tony


Blackie wrote:
shortymcnostrill wrote:


Although I'd be happy to see the other issue addressed in some way too; in my (casual) group I face an all-vehicle army, a fast horde infantry army and a dark angels player focussing on bringing the most durable multi-wound, inv save stuff they can. And then there's me, trying to build a tac list that can somehow handle all of this and not simply have the effective parts for the match-up singled out and ganked asap.

But then again, I wouldn't want my standard infantry easily killing tanks ("balanced"), and I wouldn't want to limit my opponent's or (my own) ability to play a force they want to play. I don't know how I'd solve this one.


If you play only vs optimized skew lists it's very hard, if not flat out impossible, to build a TAC list and expect to compete with your opponents. Unless your army is overpowered to the core.

When you have access only to a very selected player base and those players refuse or maybe can't change their lists frequently it has always been hard to get balanced games of 40k. That's why I always suggest players who mostly (if not entirely) play within a restricted pool of friends to play with up to 50-75% of the players' collections: substantial changes to organize more balanced games would be immediately possible this way.


Automatically Appended Next Post:
 Just Tony wrote:
 Da Boss wrote:
However, I think FOC will never come back...


Which means there will never be true balance and the game will most assuredly be a game of pay to win, plunk down for the new hotness, delete and get the NEW new hotness when the old new hotness is obsolete.


40k has been unbalanced in the past, even with the the FOC in play.


But it HAS BEEN BALANCED in the past with it, so why disregard it out of hand because they dropped the ball once?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/15 07:01:18


Post by: Jidmah


8th has also been in a fairly balanced state without it until they called exterminatus on the whole thing with Space Marines 2.0.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/15 08:01:48


Post by: Not Online!!!


 Jidmah wrote:
8th has also been in a fairly balanced state without it until they called exterminatus on the whole thing with Space Marines 2.0.


only after having to nerf some other ISSUE candidate, that generally has nothing lost in a standard FOC.

but yeah, i agree. 8th was overall balance wise one of the "better" editions, except rulesbook wise in regards to price , it was still meh.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/15 08:15:40


Post by: Blackie


 Just Tony wrote:


But it HAS BEEN BALANCED in the past with it, so why disregard it out of hand because they dropped the ball once?


Because units, if not whole armies, changes through editions, even if they rely on the same codex. You can't expect to play with the same list forever.


Automatically Appended Next Post:
 VladimirHerzog wrote:


i think there is a false assumption that tournament/competitive players represent the majority of 40k. Its the complete opposite. Casual players that buy the models they think look good are the majority and these are the ones that don't necessarily buy models because of their performance on the tabletop.


Yes, that's exactly what I'm saying. SM are OP mostly in casual games because a random chunk of models is already close to a competitive list. I think giving them a powerful codex in conjunction of a couple years of massive releases is a bad move for the most popular army. SM would buy anyway, but if they are broken too many people will buy them, to the point that mirror matches could become very hard to avoid.

I'm not saying that SM should suck forever, only that in an age in which their entire huge cataloge is in the process of being re-done GW shouldn't have incentivized SM even more with lots of cheesy rules. In competitive gaming, they're far less problematic.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/15 10:22:47


Post by: Just Tony


 Blackie wrote:
 Just Tony wrote:


But it HAS BEEN BALANCED in the past with it, so why disregard it out of hand because they dropped the ball once?


Because units, if not whole armies, changes through editions, even if they rely on the same codex. You can't expect to play with the same list forever.


Automatically Appended Next Post:
 VladimirHerzog wrote:


i think there is a false assumption that tournament/competitive players represent the majority of 40k. Its the complete opposite. Casual players that buy the models they think look good are the majority and these are the ones that don't necessarily buy models because of their performance on the tabletop.


Yes, that's exactly what I'm saying. SM are OP mostly in casual games because a random chunk of models is already close to a competitive list. I think giving them a powerful codex in conjunction of a couple years of massive releases is a bad move for the most popular army. SM would buy anyway, but if they are broken too many people will buy them, to the point that mirror matches could become very hard to avoid.

I'm not saying that SM should suck forever, only that in an age in which their entire huge cataloge is in the process of being re-done GW shouldn't have incentivized SM even more with lots of cheesy rules. In competitive gaming, they're far less problematic.


Yes I can. I've run seven armies (8 if you count Legion of the Damned) spanning 3rd Ed. to 6th when I dropped out of modern gaming completely. Despite that, I've followed the rules waiting fruitlessly for the game to return to a semblance of lunacy and balance. DESPITE that, NONE of my armies were invalidated by any edition or Codex change. None of my models were made obsolete by the changes. I could literally have run all 7 (8) of those armies clear up to modern rules without having to swap anything.

The BEST thing GW could do for balance is not change out the foundation of the house every 3 years.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/15 10:50:19


Post by: kirotheavenger


 Just Tony wrote:

The BEST thing GW could do for balance is not change out the foundation of the house every 3 years.

Absolutely this. The constant churning of rules an upheaval is always going to result in imbalance.
The need for each new model or book to have more interesting rules than the last is often going to result in OP rules. It only takes one outlier to kick off an arms race (see 7th for how that works out).


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/15 12:16:37


Post by: Blackie


 Just Tony wrote:


Yes I can. I've run seven armies (8 if you count Legion of the Damned) spanning 3rd Ed. to 6th when I dropped out of modern gaming completely. Despite that, I've followed the rules waiting fruitlessly for the game to return to a semblance of lunacy and balance. DESPITE that, NONE of my armies were invalidated by any edition or Codex change. None of my models were made obsolete by the changes. I could literally have run all 7 (8) of those armies clear up to modern rules without having to swap anything.

The BEST thing GW could do for balance is not change out the foundation of the house every 3 years.


You still can actually. They just won't be competitive. The SW lists I play are very 5th-7th edition oriented, in fact I haven't bought a single model of that faction after 7th. "Invalidated" is a big word, unless you play some FW factions. Nothing has been actually invalidated, on the contrary the modern lists can avoid all the restrictions that came with the old FOC. And unless you're SM the foundation of every houses is mostly the same since 20+ years.

You've probably have been lucky in the past. I had to make significant changes to my favourite orks lists in the updating process from the 3rd codex to 4th-5th edition one just to play fairly balanced games against friends. There's a ton of examples of units that were completely re-written, removed, or changed significantly in stats and/or points cost with the launch of the new codex even in older editions.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/15 14:43:19


Post by: Unit1126PLL


Yeah, my point about scope isn't that there's a Guardsmen who can individually try to bayonet the Warlord Titan (though that IS a problem), but rather the breadth of factions.

Units/armies like the Inquisition, Custodes, Sisters of Silence, etc used to be fluff elements or folded into larger and wider armies as options within a greater context.

To use the analogy again: Custodes vs Harlequins with allied CWE on Martian terrain is basically the Secret Service entering a pitched battle with the Screen Actors Guild with allied German tank battalions somewhere in Peru.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/15 15:18:53


Post by: ccs


 Blackie wrote:
 Just Tony wrote:


Yes I can. I've run seven armies (8 if you count Legion of the Damned) spanning 3rd Ed. to 6th when I dropped out of modern gaming completely. Despite that, I've followed the rules waiting fruitlessly for the game to return to a semblance of lunacy and balance. DESPITE that, NONE of my armies were invalidated by any edition or Codex change. None of my models were made obsolete by the changes. I could literally have run all 7 (8) of those armies clear up to modern rules without having to swap anything.

The BEST thing GW could do for balance is not change out the foundation of the house every 3 years.


You still can actually. They just won't be competitive. The SW lists I play are very 5th-7th edition oriented, in fact I haven't bought a single model of that faction after 7th. "Invalidated" is a big word, unless you play some FW factions. Nothing has been actually invalidated, on the contrary the modern lists can avoid all the restrictions that came with the old FOC. And unless you're SM the foundation of every houses is mostly the same since 20+ years.


I've got you beat on not updating a SW force.
Until 2018 my 2e era army had been static since before 3rd ed arrived.
Other than decretive bits (bases, sculpted shoulder pads, SW specific backpacks) & occasionally having to swap a weapon from one guy to another, nothing added.
What changed?
1) Well, for 8e I had to add a third Greyhunter pack in order to have the option of fielding a Battalion. So I went & tracked down a 2e GH box. They get referred to as "New Squad" & used as infrequently as possible.
2) I replaced my 2e era Armor Cast drop pods with the much more transport friendly kits from GW.
The only model to have ever been invalidated? My Ragnar since there's now no 9e option to field a non-primarisized version of him. (but I'll just use him as a generic Wolf Lord)
Other than that? I'm playing the exact same SW models/list I've been using since 2e.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/15 15:59:11


Post by: Rihgu


 Unit1126PLL wrote:
Yeah, my point about scope isn't that there's a Guardsmen who can individually try to bayonet the Warlord Titan (though that IS a problem), but rather the breadth of factions.

Units/armies like the Inquisition, Custodes, Sisters of Silence, etc used to be fluff elements or folded into larger and wider armies as options within a greater context.

To use the analogy again: Custodes vs Harlequins with allied CWE on Martian terrain is basically the Secret Service entering a pitched battle with the Screen Actors Guild with allied German tank battalions somewhere in Peru.


Except in this case, there's more than one planet with "red dirt", the Secret Service has weapons that can rip through German Tanks and the Screen Actors Guild can not only leap over buildings and dodge bullets but have weapons that penetrate all but the strongest of armor and fill the juicy organs underneath with monomolecular wire... you know what, I'm not sure this analogy really works out too well.

Also, Inquisition, Assassins and Sisters of Silence at least are folded into wider armies as options within a greater context, by way of their special rules that allow them to be added into other armies without breaking detachment bonuses. Custodes have been expanded out to a full force that engages in battles of tabletop scale on their own, though.

I went into this post ultimately agreeing with your main point but disagreeing with the use of the analogy and then as I thought about it more I realized that most of these armies have been set up to be primarily a small part of a larger force or have been expanded in fluff and rules to be a capable force on their own. Oops.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/15 17:37:21


Post by: carldooley


 Unit1126PLL wrote:
To use the analogy again: Custodes vs Harlequins with allied CWE on Martian terrain is basically the Secret Service entering a pitched battle with the Screen Actors Guild with allied German tank battalions somewhere in Peru.


Ya know, that's why I replaced my Kroot with Ork shoota boyz - they function just fine in vacuum.

@ OP: I don't expect 40k to be balanced, but I expect to be surprised every now & then.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/15 17:51:38


Post by: Mezmorki


ccs wrote:


I've got you beat on not updating a SW force.
Until 2018 my 2e era army had been static since before 3rd ed arrived.


omg - there's more of us! I'm in the same boat.

I think I have the entire line up of metal SW models from the 2nd edition era. This includes:

30 grey hunters/blood claws
6 wolf guard terminators
6 wolf scouts
5 long fangs + sergeant
assorted wolf guard in power armor
Bjorn dreadnaught
Characters: Ragar, Njal, Ulrik, rune priest, rune priest in termi armor, iron priest

I have a list using all the above still in 9th edition (alongside land speeders and drop pods). Still usable!


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/15 20:25:09


Post by: Blackie


Yeah, with the exception of few models the bulk of the GW line lasts for decades. And most factions are still ok playing lists that aren't that different to what they used to bring 15-20 years ago.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/15 22:00:37


Post by: thegreatchimp


 Da Boss wrote:
There really should be a disclaimer at the start of the thread that we all understand that perfect balance is unattainable and are talking about improving balance or having "close enough" balance.
Do we all though? Or specifically, are we all aware of the massive difficulty in getting anywhere near close balance in a game as expansive (sprawling?) as 40k?

I must confess that even as a seasoned gamer, with a good grasp of writing rules, I had overlooked a lot of subtle factors and even one or two few major ones. Until I started researching it extensively a few years ago. Now I'm aware of the complexities, but wreck my head trying to account for them. Fun and frustrating in equal measure.

I think the most crucial step in achieving any semblance of balance in the game is to limit synergies and buffing and avoid snowballing. In particular its so difficult to establish the worth of AOE abilities, to say nothing of bonuses that effect a whole army.



Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/16 06:10:23


Post by: Apple fox


 kirotheavenger wrote:
The idea behind the FOC is that building a skew list would become impossible, as you cannot physically fit enough of anything to make it skew.
You are, in effect, forced to take a balanced TAC list as that's all that will fit within the confines of the FOC.

Personally I don't think the old FOC achieved this particularly effectively, as a units classification really had very little to do with actual tabletop performance.
But it's a solid concept.


I dont really think you need a FOC so much if things are well planed. Warmachine does not have one(but the way the warcaster group works may be close, as well as themes in a way.) , but in the way the army is built its rare for truly Skew lists to be pushed. Since often even if you go heavy into builds you want there support elements as well, with assassination this also gives a powerful out even if you are running a sub optimal army.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/16 09:16:52


Post by: Blackie


There's currently no competitive skew list that wouldn't fit the old FOC though. Marines, Harlequins, Orks, Daemons, etc.. all fit the max 3x FA, HS, Elites limitations that the old FOC had.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/16 09:19:19


Post by: Not Online!!!


 Blackie wrote:
There's currently no competitive skew list that wouldn't fit the old FOC though. Marines, Harlequins, Orks, Daemons, etc.. all fit the max 3x FA, HS, Elites limitations that the old FOC had.


With the caveat that some of these factions allready undermined the FOC via squads / squadrons.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/16 10:27:31


Post by: Blackie


Not Online!!! wrote:
 Blackie wrote:
There's currently no competitive skew list that wouldn't fit the old FOC though. Marines, Harlequins, Orks, Daemons, etc.. all fit the max 3x FA, HS, Elites limitations that the old FOC had.


With the caveat that some of these factions allready undermined the FOC via squads / squadrons.


That's true. Although units like artillery, dreads, buggies were close to centerpiece models in 3rd-5th edition while now we have bigger tanks/walkers, superheavies, flyers, primarchs, infantries with T5 3W, etc... so fielding those units as single models instead of squadrons wouldn't make any sense for some armies anymore.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/16 14:32:39


Post by: Not Online!!!


 Blackie wrote:
Not Online!!! wrote:
 Blackie wrote:
There's currently no competitive skew list that wouldn't fit the old FOC though. Marines, Harlequins, Orks, Daemons, etc.. all fit the max 3x FA, HS, Elites limitations that the old FOC had.


With the caveat that some of these factions allready undermined the FOC via squads / squadrons.


That's true. Although units like artillery, dreads, buggies were close to centerpiece models in 3rd-5th edition while now we have bigger tanks/walkers, superheavies, flyers, primarchs, infantries with T5 3W, etc... so fielding those units as single models instead of squadrons wouldn't make any sense for some armies anymore.


also squadrons were quite often counterproductive for vehicles. So in a way it was better balanced.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/18 23:15:26


Post by: Canadian 5th


The recent Death Guard codex has people up in arms over some options in load outs being limited in ways that make some popular unit builds illegal. I feel this is a smart move for balance without actually removing any given option from viability. How do our balance focused posters feel about this change?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/18 23:19:39


Post by: JNAProductions


 Canadian 5th wrote:
The recent Death Guard codex has people up in arms over some options in load outs being limited in ways that make some popular unit builds illegal. I feel this is a smart move for balance without actually removing any given option from viability. How do our balance focused posters feel about this change?
If it was made with balance in mind, I'd be happier. But it was made because "that's what's in the kit."

Furthermore, with what GW actually does and given their track record at balance, the best we can probably hope for from GW is customization. The ability to really make your dudes, YOUR DUDES. This goes against that, and barely affects balance.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/18 23:21:33


Post by: Castozor


 Canadian 5th wrote:
The recent Death Guard codex has people up in arms over some options in load outs being limited in ways that make some popular unit builds illegal. I feel this is a smart move for balance without actually removing any given option from viability. How do our balance focused posters feel about this change?

I see this argument again and again and it makes no sense. People ran their PM in those ways because it gave each unit a purpose and made sense. Rest assured no DG player who was power gaming was ever running big/many PM squads to begin with. So balance has nothing to do with it, in fact if you were so inclined 10-man units actually get MORE special weapons now than ever before. It is just people that ran 6-9 man squads that get boned now. Now you can try and defend this change for a number of reasons (all of which I disagree with) but balance had nothing to do with it.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/18 23:28:56


Post by: Canadian 5th


 JNAProductions wrote:
If it was made with balance in mind, I'd be happier. But it was made because "that's what's in the kit."

I'm sure you can back this up with evidence... right?

Furthermore, with what GW actually does and given their track record at balance, the best we can probably hope for from GW is customization. The ability to really make your dudes, YOUR DUDES. This goes against that, and barely affects balance.

In Codex: Death Guard GW has directly nerfed the army's ability to maximize the board control advantage its raw toughness would otherwise afford it. No OBSEC on cultists, one secondary specific action for Poxwalkers, and a nerf to the potency of 5-man PM units. This could all be a coincidence, but taken as a whole it seems like an honest effort to proactively balance DG.

 Castozor wrote:
I see this argument again and again and it makes no sense. People ran their PM in those ways because it gave each unit a purpose and made sense. Rest assured no DG player who was power gaming was ever running big/many PM squads to begin with. So balance has nothing to do with it, in fact if you were so inclined 10-man units actually get MORE special weapons now than ever before. It is just people that ran 6-9 man squads that get boned now. Now you can try and defend this change for a number of reasons (all of which I disagree with) but balance had nothing to do with it.

Doesn't this also pull a special weapon from a 5-man unit of PMs as well? Also, see my reply to JNA above for why I think this was expressly targeted as a balance change.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/18 23:38:22


Post by: AnomanderRake


 Canadian 5th wrote:
 JNAProductions wrote:
If it was made with balance in mind, I'd be happier. But it was made because "that's what's in the kit."

I'm sure you can back this up with evidence... right?...


Inference, certainly. How likely is it that game balance happens to require those specific restrictions and no others? If balance requires that Plague Marines be only able to carry weapons that ship in exactly one box of Plague Marines why is the same not true of, say, Retributors (you need two boxes to field four of the same gun, which five models are allowed to do)? Going the other way a Tactical Squad box ships with four special weapons but they can only use one, why would balance require that Plague Marines be able to field all the guns in the box but Tactical Squads can't?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/18 23:44:04


Post by: Castozor


Yeah 5-man also got hit, my bad. But really ye they did target our board control but balance wise how much board control does a small 5" movement crew even get you? PM are to expensive to spam and this "re balancing" as you seem to think it is doesn't even make sense. You can still take 2 plasma and a blightlauncher in a 5-man squad but not 2 blightlaunchers and 1 plasma for some reason. Not too mention melee squads got hit the hardest, who only offer damage in melee as supposed to other smaller PM squads who can squat on an objective and offer firepower down range.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/18 23:50:24


Post by: Canadian 5th


 AnomanderRake wrote:
Inference, certainly. How likely is it that game balance happens to require those specific restrictions and no others? If balance requires that Plague Marines be only able to carry weapons that ship in exactly one box of Plague Marines why is the same not true of, say, Retributors (you need two boxes to field four of the same gun, which five models are allowed to do)? Going the other way a Tactical Squad box ships with four special weapons but they can only use one, why would balance require that Plague Marines be able to field all the guns in the box but Tactical Squads can't?

It could easily line up that a balance change and another desired change happened to line up.

There's also the fact that we see a distinct change in weapons options between mono-pose models and multi-pose models which is likely what's making the divide between DG and SM right now. If we see another codex drop that has the same type of mono-pose kits as DG use that don't have these restrictions I might be swayed but as things stand it's in my belief that this is an alignment between the axes of balance and practicality.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/18 23:54:47


Post by: AnomanderRake


Do you regard Battle Sisters as less mono-pose than Plague Marines?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/18 23:57:51


Post by: Canadian 5th


 AnomanderRake wrote:
Do you regard Battle Sisters as less mono-pose than Plague Marines?

Do they have a 9th edition codex?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 00:05:33


Post by: Tyel


In theory it facilitates balance if you assume certain weapons are always going to be better than others (for at least a certain period of time until the pendulum swings.)

I.E. if 5 Blightlords with combi-plasma are just *better* than any other loadout, the bar between someone who is willing to spend the time and money accumulating them (assuming strict adherence to WYSIWIG) and someone who isn't is removed.

In terms of pure balance its obviously easier if the loadout of all units is set in stone - and so you don't have optimal/suboptimal loadouts. Same reason arguably why chapter tactics are bad - how do you balance for picking the good ones or picking the bad ones?

In practice though, I'm not sure this trade off in losing customisation is good for the hobby. In terms of gameplay, I'm also not sure its worth the time loss in having to roll every model individually. I.E. if you ran 5 melee Plague Marines you'd now have a guy with two knives, a guy with an axe and a knife, a guy with an axe and a mace, a guy with a flail and a guy with a cleaver. All of these would have to be rolled separately. Which is just going to eat up time.

Admittedly nothing stopped you doing this before - but making it mandatory seems a step back.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 00:06:31


Post by: AnomanderRake


I recognize I'm inferring from one data point and you're trying to say that we need more data points to infer from here. That said if Battle Sisters squads changed to minimum 10 and could take exactly one heavy bolter, one multi-melta, two storm bolters, two flamers, and two meltaguns per ten models when they got their new book, would that be explainable as a "balance change" to you?


Automatically Appended Next Post:
Tyel wrote:
...I.E. if 5 Blightlords with combi-plasma are just *better* than any other loadout, the bar between someone who is willing to spend the time and money accumulating them (assuming strict adherence to WYSIWIG) and someone who isn't is removed...


And obviously the best balance change is to restrict Blightlords to exactly the parts in the box, rather than, I don't know, nerf the combi-plasmas?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 00:29:09


Post by: JNAProductions


 Canadian 5th wrote:
Furthermore, with what GW actually does and given their track record at balance, the best we can probably hope for from GW is customization. The ability to really make your dudes, YOUR DUDES. This goes against that, and barely affects balance.

In Codex: Death Guard GW has directly nerfed the army's ability to maximize the board control advantage its raw toughness would otherwise afford it. No OBSEC on cultists, one secondary specific action for Poxwalkers, and a nerf to the potency of 5-man PM units. This could all be a coincidence, but taken as a whole it seems like an honest effort to proactively balance DG.
Sure-and I can applaud them for taking OTHER actions for achieving balance.

I won't applaud them for that specific decision, though, because, as far as I can tell, it was made just because "That's in the box."

And again-40k is not a well balanced game. I don't really expect it to be. I want it to be, but I accept that it's not. But given that it's not balanced... It might as well let you customize your army how you like. And this goes against the latter without helping the former.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 00:42:24


Post by: Tyel


 AnomanderRake wrote:
And obviously the best balance change is to restrict Blightlords to exactly the parts in the box, rather than, I don't know, nerf the combi-plasmas?


This doesn't necessarily fix the balance issue though. If say as a result of that nerf Combi-Melta became the optimal loadout, you'd be back to the problem of someone whose willing to spend the time and money getting 5 of those rather than just use what's in the box.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 00:57:07


Post by: Canadian 5th


 AnomanderRake wrote:
I recognize I'm inferring from one data point and you're trying to say that we need more data points to infer from here. That said if Battle Sisters squads changed to minimum 10 and could take exactly one heavy bolter, one multi-melta, two storm bolters, two flamers, and two meltaguns per ten models when they got their new book, would that be explainable as a "balance change" to you?

Why are you suggesting a change the minimum unit size for SoB Battle Sisters in this example? PMs have the exact same minimum unit size as before and if Deathshroud terminators changed to a minimum 5-model unit that would serve to bring them in line with most other terminator units and is also likely a balance change to avoid DG having points efficient DS units to use for board control.

Ignoring the change to the unit size I could easily see that SoB unit being easier to balance with those restrictions in place and the unit hasn't lost access to any weapons it could take before so it's a win-win move.

And obviously the best balance change is to restrict Blightlords to exactly the parts in the box, rather than, I don't know, nerf the combi-plasmas?

Are you suggesting we cost the same weapons differently for every single unit that can take it or should we nerf combi-plasma codex wide due to a single unit abusing it? Going further should we nerf it game wide among armies with the same BS to keep things fair?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 01:00:39


Post by: VladimirHerzog


 Canadian 5th wrote:

Why are you suggesting a change the minimum unit size for SoB Battle Sisters in this example? PMs have the exact same minimum unit size as before and if Deathshroud terminators changed to a minimum 5-model unit that would serve to bring them in line with most other terminator units and is also likely a balance change to avoid DG having points efficient DS units to use for board control.


prove that it would be for balance if were going full-on theoretical


Automatically Appended Next Post:
 Canadian 5th wrote:

Are you suggesting we cost the same weapons differently for every single unit that can take it or should we nerf combi-plasma codex wide due to a single unit abusing it? Going further should we nerf it game wide among armies with the same BS to keep things fair?


honestly. Yes.

Pts costs and unit cost should be done on a codex by codex basis. Even on a supplement by supplement basis TBH.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 01:02:43


Post by: JNAProductions


 VladimirHerzog wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:

Are you suggesting we cost the same weapons differently for every single unit that can take it or should we nerf combi-plasma codex wide due to a single unit abusing it? Going further should we nerf it game wide among armies with the same BS to keep things fair?


honestly. Yes.

Pts costs and unit cost should be done on a codex by codex basis. Even on a supplement by supplement basis TBH.
Also, that's how the new points format works.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 01:07:17


Post by: VladimirHerzog


 JNAProductions wrote:
 VladimirHerzog wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:

Are you suggesting we cost the same weapons differently for every single unit that can take it or should we nerf combi-plasma codex wide due to a single unit abusing it? Going further should we nerf it game wide among armies with the same BS to keep things fair?


honestly. Yes.

Pts costs and unit cost should be done on a codex by codex basis. Even on a supplement by supplement basis TBH.
Also, that's how the new points format works.


Is there weapons with different costs in different codex/units right now? Or is it just from a presentation perspective?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 01:21:10


Post by: Castozor


 VladimirHerzog wrote:
 JNAProductions wrote:
 VladimirHerzog wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:

Are you suggesting we cost the same weapons differently for every single unit that can take it or should we nerf combi-plasma codex wide due to a single unit abusing it? Going further should we nerf it game wide among armies with the same BS to keep things fair?


honestly. Yes.

Pts costs and unit cost should be done on a codex by codex basis. Even on a supplement by supplement basis TBH.
Also, that's how the new points format works.


Is there weapons with different costs in different codex/units right now? Or is it just from a presentation perspective?

Yes actually, in the new DG codex. Special weapons are 10 points for PM and the same weapons are generally 5 points for the Terminators. Bit odd considering Terminators get the better profiles and are tougher baseline.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 01:47:18


Post by: VladimirHerzog


 Castozor wrote:

Yes actually, in the new DG codex. Special weapons are 10 points for PM and the same weapons are generally 5 points for the Terminators. Bit odd considering Terminators get the better profiles and are tougher baseline.


hadnt noticed that, good move from GW honestly.



Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 07:19:06


Post by: vict0988


 Castozor wrote:
 VladimirHerzog wrote:
 JNAProductions wrote:
 VladimirHerzog wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:

Are you suggesting we cost the same weapons differently for every single unit that can take it or should we nerf combi-plasma codex wide due to a single unit abusing it? Going further should we nerf it game wide among armies with the same BS to keep things fair?


honestly. Yes.

Pts costs and unit cost should be done on a codex by codex basis. Even on a supplement by supplement basis TBH.
Also, that's how the new points format works.


Is there weapons with different costs in different codex/units right now? Or is it just from a presentation perspective?

Yes actually, in the new DG codex. Special weapons are 10 points for PM and the same weapons are generally 5 points for the Terminators. Bit odd considering Terminators get the better profiles and are tougher baseline.

That's just because their weapon cost is baked into their cost though is it not? Thunder hammers also cost different points for different units.

I am big into balance to avoid encouraging ripping models apart and because many people have built their PMs according to old rules these new rules encourage ripping models apart. GW could have done it when the new models came out and DG became standalone but doing it now is a mistake. Letting people customize and convert their miniatures was part of the hobby that was sold to me, ripping apart old models is not a productive part of the hobby. If plasma and melta are both clearly better than every other loadout they should both be nerfed or maybe other options should be buffed depending on how strong the unit is.

Arguing removing wargear loadout options from units noticeably improves balance is silly since there are so many units that are imbalanced despite having no or few wargear options. Look at Necron Immortals, GW cannot even balance two almost identical weapons against each other on the exact same model platform and there is only one option for the unit. AM pay 2 pts for both bolt pistols and boltguns on Sergeants. I wonder what is better on a ranged unit, a 12" pistol 1 or 24" RF 1. Clearly GW have it too hard, the game is just too gosh darn complex, we better remove boltguns from AM Sergeants, except that still leaves them with a useless bolt pistol option nobody is going to pay for because the weapon is worth it. Okay, so we remove all weapon options from AM. But Infantry Squads are better than Veteran Squads, AM does have an awful lot of units, oh jeez, alright AM only get to have one unit with one exact weapon loadout. We have perfect internal balance in AM, every unit is as balanced as itself because that is all there is. But wait, there's more, AM's one unit is worse than SM's one unit so we have to limit the number of factions and look at that, we are all playing Space Marine Intercessors The Game TM.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 07:29:31


Post by: Jidmah


At the very least, they could have added the old configurations to legends, so people who don't care about going to events don't have to rip their models appart...


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 07:39:55


Post by: Not Online!!!


 Jidmah wrote:
At the very least, they could have added the old configurations to legends, so people who don't care about going to events don't have to rip their models appart...


Going to legends doesn't necessarily maintain coherency...
As in the stuff ported is not the same that it was.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 08:04:43


Post by: Jidmah


That's why I said they should have added the old configurations to legends.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 18:26:53


Post by: Unit1126PLL


Rihgu wrote:
 Unit1126PLL wrote:
Yeah, my point about scope isn't that there's a Guardsmen who can individually try to bayonet the Warlord Titan (though that IS a problem), but rather the breadth of factions.

Units/armies like the Inquisition, Custodes, Sisters of Silence, etc used to be fluff elements or folded into larger and wider armies as options within a greater context.

To use the analogy again: Custodes vs Harlequins with allied CWE on Martian terrain is basically the Secret Service entering a pitched battle with the Screen Actors Guild with allied German tank battalions somewhere in Peru.


Except in this case, there's more than one planet with "red dirt", the Secret Service has weapons that can rip through German Tanks and the Screen Actors Guild can not only leap over buildings and dodge bullets but have weapons that penetrate all but the strongest of armor and fill the juicy organs underneath with monomolecular wire... you know what, I'm not sure this analogy really works out too well.

Also, Inquisition, Assassins and Sisters of Silence at least are folded into wider armies as options within a greater context, by way of their special rules that allow them to be added into other armies without breaking detachment bonuses. Custodes have been expanded out to a full force that engages in battles of tabletop scale on their own, though.

I went into this post ultimately agreeing with your main point but disagreeing with the use of the analogy and then as I thought about it more I realized that most of these armies have been set up to be primarily a small part of a larger force or have been expanded in fluff and rules to be a capable force on their own. Oops.


I wasn't talking about capabilities. I was talking about relevance in the setting.

Like sure, you could have the Screen Actors Guild fighting in your World War III game alongside German tank battalions if you gave them "whatever capability lol" (in this case harlequin weapons) or you could have the Secret Service attacking German tanks with laser cannons or railguns or ATGMs or whatever but like...

why? You're making a World War III game, not a "every possibly-armed force that happened to contemporaneously exist with World War III" game.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 19:27:50


Post by: Rihgu


One can downplay the relevance in the setting as much as they want by making bad analogies.

Ultramarines, with all 1000 of their members, would be as relevant on the galactic scale as me and my local friends would be in World War III, and therefore even less relevant than the Secret Service or even Screen Actor's Guild.

Fact of the matter is, we have books and lore saying Harlequins are a relevant faction in the setting, and engage in relevant battles with relevantly sized forces. If we accept Space Marines as relevant, we can accept the Harlequins (who have much larger forces and therefore larger force projection) as relevant as well.

If Harlequins should just be an Elites choice for Aeldari or just fluff elements, Space Marines should be an Elites choice or fluff element for Astra Militarum armies.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 19:39:31


Post by: Racerguy180


Rihgu wrote:

If Harlequins should just be an Elites choice for Aeldari or just fluff elements, Space Marines should be an Elites choice or fluff element for Astra Militarum armies.


That would be very, very fluffy at least.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 19:43:30


Post by: Rihgu


Racerguy180 wrote:
Rihgu wrote:

If Harlequins should just be an Elites choice for Aeldari or just fluff elements, Space Marines should be an Elites choice or fluff element for Astra Militarum armies.


That would be very, very fluffy at least.


I agree to some extent, but chapters/companies/strike forces engage on their own in enough conflicts where I see the value in the codex to represent such a force. When I first got into the game (5th edition) I bought some Grey Knights expecting them to operate like they did in Dawn of War, only to be surprised to discover they were a standalone codex with no way to ally in to normal Imperial Forces. 6th and beyond have been far better about armies being constructed to how I imagine them based on lore now, with 8th and 9th being the best for having the Auxiliary Detachment so I can slot in my single Grey Knights squad to an Imperium army.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 19:57:48


Post by: Da Boss


When "soup" was allowed, I temporarily got excited about being able to make what I considered a "fluffy" imperial force, mostly Imperial Guard but then a could of Marine squads as support. Seemed right to me, and what would actually be happening in universe in lots of conflicts.

I never ended up doing it for lack of people to play with and being too busy, but I thought it would be cool.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 20:10:26


Post by: Unit1126PLL


Rihgu wrote:
One can downplay the relevance in the setting as much as they want by making bad analogies.

Ultramarines, with all 1000 of their members, would be as relevant on the galactic scale as me and my local friends would be in World War III, and therefore even less relevant than the Secret Service or even Screen Actor's Guild.

Fact of the matter is, we have books and lore saying Harlequins are a relevant faction in the setting, and engage in relevant battles with relevantly sized forces. If we accept Space Marines as relevant, we can accept the Harlequins (who have much larger forces and therefore larger force projection) as relevant as well.

If Harlequins should just be an Elites choice for Aeldari or just fluff elements, Space Marines should be an Elites choice or fluff element for Astra Militarum armies.


Actually, the problem of "Ultramarines having 1000 guys" thing is a huge point of controversy when discussing the background of Warhammer 40k. I mean look up how many "do vehicle drivers count as marines" or "who crews marine starships" or whatever.

I would be perfectly fine with Marines being folded into "imperium" armies, if that's what was necessary. Make it possible to have a marine-centric or marine-only army list (like Sisters of Battle were when they were Witch Hunters in 3rd/4th) but don't make that the primary reason for the codex.

That ship has sailed, of course, but it doesn't disprove my point: "Game scope when designing games matters, and if you scope your game to include everything and everyone that uses guns, then you will inevitably make it too unwieldy to employ."

I mean honestly I don't get the impression that GW is even considering scoping. They're just throwing bits of the background onto the table and then ballooning them up to be relevant (ref: Custodes).


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 20:13:14


Post by: AnomanderRake


Part of the problem with Harlequins is that it depends largely on which version of their lore you read as definitive. From 3rd-6th (when they were a Craftworld Elites choice) the fluff blurbs in the Craftworld books described "troupes" (read: squads) as little bands of 10-ish Harlequins wandering from Craftworld to Craftworld putting on plays and hopping into fights as it suited them. They didn't have a motor pool (the Solitaire was in the fluff blurb, the Venoms and the jetbikes weren't) and weren't described as an "army" that would fight together as anything larger than a single squad.

Go to 7th and on with the Harlequins book and yes, they've pulled forward bits of the 2e lore and expanded the Harlequins out into something that does make sense as a standalone force, but if someone liked the 4e-6e lore and wasn't well-versed on the RT/2e stuff that looks like a bizarre retcon that doesn't make a whole lot of sense, especially given that even though they're a "Codex" they've got all of three kits and four character blisters. They've got fewer unique kits than any of the SM Chapters that used to be standalone and got rolled back into the main book, or the Chaos Daemons of any one god, and I don't think anyone wants separate standlone books for all the SM again, or thinks the Chaos Daemons book really should be four different tiny books. They have barely more model content than a Necromunda gang at this point.

The problem with the Harlequins isn't that they're a standalone army, it's that there's a fundamental mismatch between their importance implied by the lore and their importance implied by their model range. The model range says "here's a weird-ass skirmish force of stripey/checkerboard Dark Eldar melee troopers!". The lore/game rules say "if you spam a bunch of duplicate mono-pose/limited-pose light infantry/light vehicles you can call it an "army" and fight other peoples' broad distributions of unit types up to super-heavy vehicles!".

If the Harlequins want to be stand-alone they need more stuff. At bare minimum a second infantry unit (lasblasters/special weapons Troupe) and a bigger tank (stripey/checkerboard Falcon-chassis or the like) would let people walk into the room, scan the range of stuff, and say "all right, that looks like an army I can credibly visualize fighting some of the other armies in this game".


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/19 20:13:49


Post by: Tyran


 Canadian 5th wrote:
I'm curious, do our forum members actually expect a balanced game from Games Workshop? I'm not going to include a poll because I don't want a simple yes or no answer.

Do you think Games Workshop tries to balance 40k and our current game is the result of that or do you think they aim for just enough balance that it takes some investment to see if it's balanced at all and use that imbalance for some other purpose?


I think the goal is the latter, with the purpose being to increase sales. But GW is actually quite bad at that, as shown every time a new release has subpar rules that hurt sales.

As a follow-up, regardless of your thoughts on the previous question, would it be morally wrong for GW to intentionally create an imbalance to sell more models or even just so they can more easily shake up the meta?

No, it is a business and it is the objective of any business to increase profitability. Of course not everything in the name of profit is moral, there are definite moral lines that a company should not cross, but a game's balance is definitely nowhere close to it.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/20 01:02:19


Post by: CEO Kasen


 Tyran wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:

As a follow-up, regardless of your thoughts on the previous question, would it be morally wrong for GW to intentionally create an imbalance to sell more models or even just so they can more easily shake up the meta?

No, it is a business and it is the objective of any business to increase profitability. Of course not everything in the name of profit is moral, there are definite moral lines that a company should not cross, but a game's balance is definitely nowhere close to it.


Shaking a stale meta not so clearly an evil; on the one hand it can be used to freshen a game and that provides value to the consumer; on the other, it arbitrarily changes the perceived value of some very expensive purchases. But I'd say that to create imbalances intentionally to sell more models is morally wrong; I might go so far as to use the words "predatory" or "anti-consumer." Manufactured discontent is a manipulative way of exploiting brain chemistry for profit.

Lest I be seen as too hyperbolic: A) given we're talking about luxury hobby products here: It's absolutely not the worst form of evil in the world, or even that we've seen in the past month/week/24 hours, but just because it's not a ruinous atrocity doesn't make it right; B) While highly believable, it is not 100% clear that this GW is doing this intentionally, because, much as Tyran suggests, Hanlon's Razor is a thing and incompetence combined with being stuck in an old business model could explain some of its more questionable rules writing behavior.

Edit: Really need to hit Preview before pasting quote brackets all over the place


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/21 12:59:37


Post by: Not Online!!!


Hanlons razor would explain more, but considering the wraithknight debacle we can assume that it is NOT just hanlons razor at play.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/21 23:48:22


Post by: CEO Kasen


Not Online!!! wrote:
Hanlons razor would explain more, but considering the wraithknight debacle we can assume that it is NOT just hanlons razor at play.


I might have been out of the game for that one. What was the Wraithknight debacle?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/21 23:51:28


Post by: AnomanderRake


 CEO Kasen wrote:
Not Online!!! wrote:
Hanlons razor would explain more, but considering the wraithknight debacle we can assume that it is NOT just hanlons razor at play.


I might have been out of the game for that one. What was the Wraithknight debacle?


In 6e a Wraithknight cost around 350pts and was a Monstrous Creature. In 7th a Wraithknight cost around 350pts and got turned into a Gargantuan Creature, which made it ID-immune, gave it free Stomp attacks, and a whole bunch of other irritating rules that would have been more reasonable if it were 450-500pts and you didn't have a special LoW-spam detachment to take loads of them. It was probably the most overtly wrong single choice GW ever made in a Codex. One of the writers came out after that (can't remember who) and said management instructed him to make it a GC without fixing its points cost, which people take as evidence that GW does instruct the writers to make things deliberately OP to sell.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/21 23:55:55


Post by: alextroy


I think it was slightly different in that they rewrote the rules making it more powerful and increased the points, only to have someone in management/marketing tell them, "the rules look good, but put the points back down to 350".


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 06:42:11


Post by: stratigo


 Just Tony wrote:
 Jidmah wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:
 Da Boss wrote:
Well yeah, that is the point of what Jidmah is saying. We still call approximately circle shaped objects IRL "circles" and no one feels the need to constantly correct us and say "a real circle is impossible!".

I wish the conversation about balance in wargames worked the same way

The issue is most posters grossly underestimate how much work achieving even a 45-55 split between the top and bottom win rates is within 40ks vast potential number of matchups and play experiences. Even getting that level of balance internally to a codex is near impossible let alone also nailing inter-faction balance to that degree. The issue at hand is that list building at 40ks scale will always cause skews in list strength which are further compounded by player skill and the 'pseudo-random nature of dice.


The simple answer to that is, other companies can do it, even with much more complex games, so it is possible. End of story, no excuses.


I wish there was a term other than Stockholm Syndrome or Battered Wife Syndrome to express the excuses that seem to handwave away GW's inability to even try to balance the game anymore, or worse yet people flat out expecting it to NOT be balanced, but I can't think of a better term.


I think it's mostly the sunk cost fallacy. You invested so much into something, so it has to be a good thing. It's how ponzi schemes work. And, like, a lot of businesses really


Automatically Appended Next Post:
 CEO Kasen wrote:
 Tyran wrote:
 Canadian 5th wrote:

As a follow-up, regardless of your thoughts on the previous question, would it be morally wrong for GW to intentionally create an imbalance to sell more models or even just so they can more easily shake up the meta?

No, it is a business and it is the objective of any business to increase profitability. Of course not everything in the name of profit is moral, there are definite moral lines that a company should not cross, but a game's balance is definitely nowhere close to it.


Shaking a stale meta not so clearly an evil; on the one hand it can be used to freshen a game and that provides value to the consumer; on the other, it arbitrarily changes the perceived value of some very expensive purchases. But I'd say that to create imbalances intentionally to sell more models is morally wrong; I might go so far as to use the words "predatory" or "anti-consumer." Manufactured discontent is a manipulative way of exploiting brain chemistry for profit.

Lest I be seen as too hyperbolic: A) given we're talking about luxury hobby products here: It's absolutely not the worst form of evil in the world, or even that we've seen in the past month/week/24 hours, but just because it's not a ruinous atrocity doesn't make it right; B) While highly believable, it is not 100% clear that this GW is doing this intentionally, because, much as Tyran suggests, Hanlon's Razor is a thing and incompetence combined with being stuck in an old business model could explain some of its more questionable rules writing behavior.

Edit: Really need to hit Preview before pasting quote brackets all over the place


Hanlon's razor would posit the reverse to me. Making short sighted manipulative business decisions is the norm in business. For a company to simulate that through just incidental incompetence is positing a bizzare stacking of ignorance with angelic innocence


I mean, how many people here has worked at a business? How many of you have had a manager or someone higher up demand you do something absolutely stupid? How amny of you have had that same person almost sit on your back dictating every key stroke on a computer as you try to work?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 07:14:45


Post by: AngryAngel80


I think its obvious it's not really evil. It's just greedy and often short sighted. The ship is large and most likely bad rules slip by and good ones are pressed forward. I think it would be silly to imagine they don't realize good rules sell models. That keeping the meta fluid keeps new models or different models on the radar. I think it would be odd to imagine a company doesn't use that to their advantage.

Legends isn't there because they care of " fairness " or player time. It is there to funnel you into models they want to sell and be able to let old concepts go. Doesn't take much brain power to keep up unit stats of old and tested items. Same goes for new load outs or the like.

It's not evil, it's a company and as such is rather neutral, just greedy and sometimes stupid.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 07:19:54


Post by: Bosskelot


You also all assume that the GW designers even understand what makes a rule good or bad most of the time. As is the case of pretty much every games designer in existence, they're not that good or even that knowledgeable about their own game (and this is why outside playtesting is done for pretty much any game, tabletop or otherwise) and so half of the time when something is nerfed into irrelevance or made gamebreakingly strong it's probably unintended.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 08:41:15


Post by: Slipspace


 Bosskelot wrote:
You also all assume that the GW designers even understand what makes a rule good or bad most of the time. As is the case of pretty much every games designer in existence, they're not that good or even that knowledgeable about their own game (and this is why outside playtesting is done for pretty much any game, tabletop or otherwise) and so half of the time when something is nerfed into irrelevance or made gamebreakingly strong it's probably unintended.


I think it also comes down to the mindset of the designers. They don't seem to ask the most obvious question when they design a new rule or unit: how can this be exploited? The very first thing I'd think about once you have the first draft of a unit's abilities and cost is to see what happens if I spam as many as possible. GW just don't seem to think like that.

As a concrete example (well, semi-concrete as the details are a little fuzzy in my head now), in 8th edition there was a 40k designer who went to one of the big tournaments, possibly LVO, and was absolutely horrified to see people executing 0" charges with deep striking flying units because you could deploy them outside of 9" on top of a building and charge units on the ground while technically needing less than a 2 on the charge dice because of the interaction between Fly and terrain. Firstly, it's worrying they hadn't even considered this in the first place. But then the solution was so bad they had to change it again at the next opportunity. That tells me they just don't approach the rules with enough rigour and sometimes don't even do a rudimentary playtest with outside testers.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 08:49:39


Post by: CEO Kasen


I mean, it makes sense that the greedy, shortsighted move in question may well be beancounters skimping on playtesters.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 08:50:25


Post by: Flipsiders


 Bosskelot wrote:
You also all assume that the GW designers even understand what makes a rule good or bad most of the time. As is the case of pretty much every games designer in existence, they're not that good or even that knowledgeable about their own game (and this is why outside playtesting is done for pretty much any game, tabletop or otherwise) and so half of the time when something is nerfed into irrelevance or made gamebreakingly strong it's probably unintended.


In my opinion, don't think you could be more wrong about game designers not understanding their own games. Sure, most big games with continuous updates (whether that be new expansions for a card game, new models for a wargame, or new patches for an online shooter) generally run into some unfortunate design mistake eventually, but that is hardly proof of absolute ignorance. The ability to make new material that meshes well with the old without creating balance or gameplay issues is integral to good game design, meaning that most competent game companies hire developers who are good at exactly that. The reason playtests are important is to either fill in the gaps which will inevitably appear due to bad luck, or to test for factors which game designers couldn't measure on their own, such as understandability or enjoyment for new players. Some game companies, such as Wizards for MTG, actually hire professional players to design cards, as they've proven to understand how to evaluate cards under a competitive mindset.

Games Workshop (or more specifically 40K) just happens to have a particularly bizarre development team. They're clearly not as knowledgeable about their game and playerbase as they should be, but that's the exception, not the rule.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 08:53:27


Post by: kirotheavenger


I don't think it is unique to 40k, the specialist games team seems to have much of the same problems.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 09:56:01


Post by: Jidmah


Without wanting to excuse anything the fethed up in the past, for 9th they clearly got a lot of knowledgeable people on board to help, and so far the rules and codices are turning out rather well in regards to rules actually doing what they were trying to do.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 10:09:01


Post by: Slipspace


 kirotheavenger wrote:
I don't think it is unique to 40k, the specialist games team seems to have much of the same problems.


So the common denominator is GW.

A few years ago one of the biggest X-Wing tournaments had one of the game's designers commentating on the games. He clearly showed he understood the competitive side of the game and even freely acknowledged some of the issues with the game at the time. Just listening to him gave me a lot of confidence that the design team were orders of magnitude more competent than GW when it came to designing a balanced game. They didn't always succeed in achieving balance, of course, but at least you felt they understood the problems. The same is true of a lot of other designers who talk or post publicly about their games, including MtG.

Having knowledgeable people on board is only good if you use their feedback properly and allow them to test properly. Receiving and analysing feedback is a skill, especially divorcing yourself from the criticism in order to try to improve the game. GW designers never seem to have mastered this skill. In 7th edition WHFB some of the Dark Elf community was involved in testing the new army book. They highlighted a number of possible problems that might lead to the army being too good but by all accounts the army's designer didn't really take any criticism well and ignored the feedback. The end result was a pretty busted book that was only saved from complete infamy by the release of probably the single most broken army book ever released: Daemons of Chaos.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 10:21:20


Post by: kirotheavenger


Slipspace wrote:
 kirotheavenger wrote:
I don't think it is unique to 40k, the specialist games team seems to have much of the same problems.


So the common denominator is GW.

A few years ago one of the biggest X-Wing tournaments had one of the game's designers commentating on the games. He clearly showed he understood the competitive side of the game and even freely acknowledged some of the issues with the game at the time. Just listening to him gave me a lot of confidence that the design team were orders of magnitude more competent than GW when it came to designing a balanced game. They didn't always succeed in achieving balance, of course, but at least you felt they understood the problems. The same is true of a lot of other designers who talk or post publicly about their games, including MtG.

Indeed, I play a number of games where the developer is reasonably active in the community, answering questions and even taking suggestions. Granted those game's communities are many times smaller than GW's. But it seems GW doesn't even make the attempt.

Although for a year or so some of the specialist games developers seemed to occasionally stalk the Facebook groups. Once in a blue moon one would leave a comment clarifying someone's rule question (almost always with an answer directly contrary to the actual rules mind*) and often the rule in question would be rewritten with the next book release to be more in line with what the developer had expressed in their comment (although not always successfully).
Some of them would also act very offended at the suggestion their answer didn't match the rules, which is a view corroborated by people who claim to have met/played with the developers in question.

*Exact same situation with the few responses I've had from their FAQ email.

Slipspace wrote:Having knowledgeable people on board is only good if you use their feedback properly and allow them to test properly. Receiving and analysing feedback is a skill, especially divorcing yourself from the criticism in order to try to improve the game. GW designers never seem to have mastered this skill. In 7th edition WHFB some of the Dark Elf community was involved in testing the new army book. They highlighted a number of possible problems that might lead to the army being too good but by all accounts the army's designer didn't really take any criticism well and ignored the feedback. The end result was a pretty busted book that was only saved from complete infamy by the release of probably the single most broken army book ever released: Daemons of Chaos.

I've heard similar things from 8th/9th playtesters. Allegedly they told GW that Eradicators were overpowered and received a response along the lines of "good".


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 10:33:56


Post by: Slipspace


 kirotheavenger wrote:
Slipspace wrote:
 kirotheavenger wrote:
I don't think it is unique to 40k, the specialist games team seems to have much of the same problems.


So the common denominator is GW.

A few years ago one of the biggest X-Wing tournaments had one of the game's designers commentating on the games. He clearly showed he understood the competitive side of the game and even freely acknowledged some of the issues with the game at the time. Just listening to him gave me a lot of confidence that the design team were orders of magnitude more competent than GW when it came to designing a balanced game. They didn't always succeed in achieving balance, of course, but at least you felt they understood the problems. The same is true of a lot of other designers who talk or post publicly about their games, including MtG.

Indeed, I play a number of games where the developer is reasonably active in the community, answering questions and even taking suggestions. Granted those game's communities are many times smaller than GW's. But it seems GW doesn't even make the attempt.

Although for a year or so some of the specialist games developers seemed to occasionally stalk the Facebook groups. Once in a blue moon one would leave a comment clarifying someone's rule question (almost always with an answer directly contrary to the actual rules mind*) and often the rule in question would be rewritten with the next book release to be more in line with what the developer had expressed in their comment (although not always successfully).
Some of them would also act very offended at the suggestion their answer didn't match the rules, which is a view corroborated by people who claim to have met/played with the developers in question.

*Exact same situation with the few responses I've had from their FAQ email.


This adds more evidence to the theory I've held for a while that internal playtesting at GW involves really vaguely written drafts of the rules, or even just the designer verbally explaining it, rather than presenting players with more substantial drafts of the text and letting them play it as they understand it. I think this leads to situations where everyone internally is playing RAI but very few of their playtesters are giving feedback on the final text. Then it gets published and GW act all surprised when people read the rule and apply it without having any of the context their own playtesters have.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 10:44:51


Post by: kirotheavenger


I think most of the time they simply don't playtest.
One of the developers behind Necromunda has said on stream that they just don't get time to playtest everything. It certainly shows in the scenarios they write that some have never been played, at least not by the wording in the book.
I would describe them as cool concepts, poor writing and implementation.
I also suspect what playtesting does occur is done internally by the developers. So you're absolutely right that they're playtesting how the rules work in their head, not how the rules are actually written.
I also think the developers have a very "beer and pretzels" look on the game, and as someone pointed out earlier, they absolutely don't think about how the rules might be broken. In fact there was a White Dwarf article on Necromunda a while ago that included pictures of the developer's games, and they were playing stuff that absolutely wasn't in the rules, like GSC bikers and a Dark Eldar Haemonculus.

Although I'm banging on about specialist games now, this is the 40k subforum!
They do seem markedly better in 40k though, at least recently. It does seem an effort is made to at least make sure rules interact correctly and we do get FAQs semi-regularly that fix some things.
But they do seem badly in need of a proof-reader that knows what they're doing. It seems from job adverts that they only hire people to check things like grammar and spelling, with the editors having little to no idea what the stuff actually *means*, hence the FAQ is such a mess of errors and typos because they're only errors if you know what it's talking about.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 11:01:19


Post by: vict0988


stratigo wrote:
Hanlon's razor would posit the reverse to me. Making short sighted manipulative business decisions is the norm in business. For a company to simulate that through just incidental incompetence is positing a bizzare stacking of ignorance with angelic innocence

Hanlon's razor is about incidental incompetence, it was first made as a joke not a serious logical thing. Although some people (myself included) feel persecuted more than they should so it does apply to some people. There are lots of short-sighted things that are both stupid and malicious, but Hanlon's razer is about innocent stupidity.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 11:54:42


Post by: addnid


 CEO Kasen wrote:
I mean, it makes sense that the greedy, shortsighted move in question may well be beancounters skimping on playtesters.


I also believe this to be the origin of many OP stuff coming out, especially when it is a not a new kit. Also, as it was said here, playtesting takes time, so GW would have more delay before stuff gets out.
As they dominate the market, they just probably don't feel the need to invest and fully commit to more rigorous playtesting. There may also be a thing with 3D printing, and GW really focusing on short term profits, because the shareholders may fear that in a few years, the kits may sell less. 3D printing enables "people in the know - not new players of course -" to replace GW kits by 3D printed stuff that closely resembles the kits.
I hope I am wrong about this though, and I for one hate resin stuff and am happy to pay more for plastic kits.

Anyway I think investing in playtesting is just not the focus of GW, but still... 10 point reavers and no disclaimer for two weeks after ? That is just incompetence


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 14:58:34


Post by: Tycho


CEO Kasen wrote:
I mean, it makes sense that the greedy, shortsighted move in question may well be beancounters skimping on playtesters.


I also believe this to be the origin of many OP stuff coming out, especially when it is a not a new kit. Also, as it was said here, playtesting takes time, so GW would have more delay before stuff gets out.
As they dominate the market, they just probably don't feel the need to invest and fully commit to more rigorous playtesting. There may also be a thing with 3D printing, and GW really focusing on short term profits, because the shareholders may fear that in a few years, the kits may sell less. 3D printing enables "people in the know - not new players of course -" to replace GW kits by 3D printed stuff that closely resembles the kits.
I hope I am wrong about this though, and I for one hate resin stuff and am happy to pay more for plastic kits.

Anyway I think investing in playtesting is just not the focus of GW, but still... 10 point reavers and no disclaimer for two weeks after ? That is just incompetence


So I could be wrong here, but I don't think most of the playtesters actually even get paid ...

As far as the "OP stuff coming out" - we've seen enough times now the playtesters telling GW "Yeah, you can't release this" and GW doing it anyway. GW themselves essentially even admitted this in the case of the 8th ed Iron Hands debacle. I don't think the playtesters are perfect or anything, but at the very least, we have seen them try to stop things in the past.

As far as 3D printing. No. It's just not an issue. That debate happens in 3 to 5 year cycles on Dakka. The last time we had a long, serious thread on it, the prediction of most was that, by 2015, you would be buying 3D printers off the shelf everywhere no different than microwaves, and that GW would literally not be able to keep up. And here we are, with 3D printing bigger and better than it has ever been, and in a time when most people can't even go to a store to buy models, and GW has had record high profits. The "3D printing Boogeyman" isn't exactly burning down their house is he?

Even for those who know how to do it, 3D printing is still much more difficult than traditional casting (which was, and continues to be far more widespread), and that never really hurt them either. By the time it ever actually becomes an issue (IF it ever gets to be an issue for them), they will have figured out a way to monetize even that (My degree is in Industrial Design and I have extensive experience here - there's just A LOT that would need to happen before 3D printing becomes an issue for them. A LOT).

You see GW focusing on short term profits because GW has simply always focused on short term profits. That's been their business model forever. They have almost always focused on the short term. They have paid dearly for that at times (7th ed 40k for example, and the initial Sigmar debacle), but yeah, that's been their model for a long long time.



Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 16:30:40


Post by: FezzikDaBullgryn


I'm fairly certain GW treats it's play testers like any AAA game developer treats it's game testers, take CDPR for instance. They are paid nothing, forced to work 80 hour weeks under the threat of being replaced, not given any benefits(Part time hire loopholes) and they are ALWAYS the first ones thrown under the bus when a half baked and crap product like CP2077 or 9th Edition Primaris rules get tossed out to a hungry and violent mob of enthusiasts.

TL;DR - GW likely treats it's testers like warmed up dog crap, and it's no wonder why their products routinely are crap.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 16:35:27


Post by: Tycho


I'm fairly certain GW treats it's play testers like any AAA game developer treats it's game testers, take CDPR for instance. They are paid nothing, forced to work 80 hour weeks under the threat of being replaced, not given any benefits(Part time hire loopholes) and they are ALWAYS the first ones thrown under the bus when a half baked and crap product like CP2077 or 9th Edition Primaris rules get tossed out to a hungry and violent mob of enthusiasts.

TL;DR - GW likely treats it's testers like warmed up dog crap, and it's no wonder why their products routinely are crap.


So ... unfair shot at CDRP as what you describe is the norm for nearly all levels of development in AAA games at way more studios than it should be (this is why my stint in that industry was brief), and as far as "how GW treats it's play testers" yeah - like most of us who are not playtesters for GW - you have no idea. So let's not get quite so hyperbolic?

In fact, GW has, several times now, done the OPPOSITE of what you describe. I haven't seen them, one single time, blame play testers for anything. Ever. They did say, when they eventually nerfed IH that they were warned about the problems and released the book anyway. That's a pretty far cry from your theory isn't it?


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 16:56:25


Post by: Slipspace


FezzikDaBullgryn wrote:
I'm fairly certain GW treats it's play testers like any AAA game developer treats it's game testers, take CDPR for instance. They are paid nothing, forced to work 80 hour weeks under the threat of being replaced, not given any benefits(Part time hire loopholes) and they are ALWAYS the first ones thrown under the bus when a half baked and crap product like CP2077 or 9th Edition Primaris rules get tossed out to a hungry and violent mob of enthusiasts.

TL;DR - GW likely treats it's testers like warmed up dog crap, and it's no wonder why their products routinely are crap.


This is probably the fifth or sixth unfounded hyperbole-laden, vitriolic post you've made in this thread. You appear to be angry at GW for some reason. Might I suggest stepping away for a while to allow yourself to calm down?

GW playtesters are not treated at all like video game testers. Video game testers are pretty much treated like gak from what I can tell (I have known a couple who worked for AAA studios in my time) - same long hours as the developers without the good salary and perks to match. GW testers aren't paid at all as they're all volunteers. They don't get thrown under the bus at all since we've already established GW rarely admits its balance mistakes so they don't get an opportunity to blame people for things they don't admit to. Most playtesters seem to be quite appreciative of being involved in the development of GW games, even if their feedback isn't always listened to.

If you have any evidence to back up your unfounded theory I'm sure it would make for interesting reading.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 16:57:56


Post by: Captain Joystick


As someone building a halfling blood bowl team right now, I don't think there's any expectation of 'true' balance in the specialist games - but the fact is that this same halfling team, with extra halflings to max out all positions if I ever need to, plus multiple conversions for treemen, star players, coaches, etc. is going to ultimately cost less than $300 to build, a shy fraction of any actual 40k army.

To that end, yeah, I do expect a degree of balance in 40k. Not every possible build of every army needs a valid path to victory, but the very best build of every army should have at least a fighting chance against the very best build of every other army. Yes, it's a moving target, but it's something worth striving for.


Do You Expect 40k To Be Balanced? @ 2021/01/22 17:03:29


Post by: Canadian 5th


FezzikDaBullgryn wrote:
I'm fairly certain GW treats it's play testers like any AAA game developer treats it's game testers, take CDPR for instance. They are paid nothing, forced to work 80 hour weeks under the threat of being replaced, not given any benefits(Part time hire loopholes) and they are ALWAYS the first ones thrown under the bus when a half baked and crap product like CP2077 or 9th Edition Primaris rules get tossed out to a hungry and violent mob of enthusiasts.

TL;DR - GW likely treats it's testers like warmed up dog crap, and it's no wonder why their products routinely are crap.

CDPR didn't blame its playtesters for CP2077, they said they didn't see some of the crashes/bugs (which is likely true) and that they had expectations that they could fix the game last minute because they'd always managed to do that before. If fans blame the testers that's on the fans.