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Classic Hammer » Warhammer Fantasy » Rules Development
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Beasts of Chaos - first amendment test.
Just Tony
So as some of you know, I'm working on a project to get a community consensus about the army books, and what things between Ravening Hordes and 8th are balanced, "priced right", and worth trying to retrofit into 6th. The core rules I feel are about where I'd like them, with the house rules I've mentioned in other posts, AND in the stickies. Also, I think from this point on, we are going with the "no marching and half charge range" for difficult terrain.

So a pet project of mine is coming up with a version of the Beastmen army that is harmonious with the spirit of the army, without any of the powercreep issues that have plagued the 7th books onward. That being said, I'm kind of spitballing ideas here to see what sticks. This is what I have so far.

Beast Herds are a tough prospect, maybe having that be the only way to get Ungors with spears or two hand weapon Gors. I like the mechanic, but also like both Ravening Hordes AND the 7th Ed ways of handling Gors and Ungors.

Ungor Skirmishers with bows. To me, this is a must. Period.
Gor Herds - give them options for shields and/or halberds, possibly light armor. Don't want to outshine Bestigors, but the travesty is that we lost the halberd build off of the Gors, of which I have over 60 models.
Minotaurs - I feel that 6th Ed book got them right, as well as the Doombull.
Centigors - I can't even get motivated about this unit, nothing about them even seems interesting, let alone good.
Bestigors - I'd really love them to have a hand weapon/shield combo, other than paying for a great weapon that is parked on their back and a point sink. Guess it gives modularity.

Past that, the only thing I'm thinking is I'd like to change the way Marks work. That one's a large deal, so I'd have to think about it. I have an idea, but I want to mull it over before typing.

To be continued, feel free to chime in.
Father, soldier, musician, Transformers fan, masochistic junior moderator type thing.
I actually plan on buying (eventually) some of those monopose halberd Gors to use as Bestigors, so it's funny you mention them.

Even if you give the Gors halberds, they'd still be only S 4, whereas the Bestigors will be S 5 so they still won't outshine that unit.

I'm very interested to see how you go through with this. Definitely keep posting your thoughts on here!
Just Tony
Thanks. I'm thinking Marks should be about what they were at the start of 3rd Ed. 40K, a simple stat adjustment.

Khorne +1 Strength
Nurgle +1 Toughness
Slannesh +1 Attack
Tzeentch +1 Initiative
Unidivided +1 Leadership

That looks to be about right, and does away with the power dice shennanigans. Also I think the whole Mixed Chaos BS should be nerfed and a simple Allies rule instituted game wide.
Father, soldier, musician, Transformers fan, masochistic junior moderator type thing.
Just Tony
So another thought that hit me was Warhounds and Centigors. Warhounds should fill the gap for Fast Cavalry, and Centigors should fill the standard but not quite heavy Cavalry role. I don't think either does right now. I'd like to have them fill those roles.
Father, soldier, musician, Transformers fan, masochistic junior moderator type thing.
Personally, I really liked the horde skirmish mechanics of 6th ed. That, plus Ambush, gave the army a really unique flavour when otherwise, as the designer notes in that edition stated, they otherwise tend to act like 'brown Orcs and Goblins'.

I also wish they had access to Dragon Ogres (without allying). I began building an army in 6th ed because of how much I liked the playstyle and monsters (and they made a great opponent for my Wood Elves), but when 7th ed came along it kicked out the Dragon Ogres and dulled the unique play features to the point where I saw no reason to not simply run my Greenskins instead.

I know the skirmish rules are awkward, and the beastmen ones doubly so, but I found it was easy enough to houserule most strange occurrences.

On the matter of the Marks, it's a little awkward in that not all stats are equal, and not in a way points can easily account for. Looking at your above list:
Khorne +1 Strength
--Strength is great, as it modifies both the wound rolls and saves. This stands out as great choice for most units. The exception is once Strength is around 7, at which point it becomes a bit unnecessary. Beastmen can get many Str7 characters and monsters (with Great Weapons), which means this option is kind of meaningless for many of them.
Nurgle +1 Toughness
--Toughness is also very useful, though I'd still argue that Strength is better. Again, an exception is if you can bump Toughness to 7+, making the model immune to S3, which is pretty priceless.
Slannesh +1 Attack
--Extra attacks are probably nearly on par with extra Strength. Another solid choice. There's no point at which this doesn't stop being good, or become more powerful than intended.
Tzeentch +1 Initiative
--Here's where things fall down... Initiative is a very black/white thing, and in 7th ed it doesn't even matter until after a charge. It's also useless for anything with a Great Weapon. I would not pay points for an Initiative boost, on anything.
Unidivided +1 Leadership
--This one is situationally useful. It can't compare to most Marks, except if given to the General (or maybe combat heroes who are otherwise outside the General's influence). For a whole unit, it's mostly useless. Still, I wouldn't trade this for +1I even if that trade were free.

In short, it's generally easy to see what units or characters you'd want to give what marks to, and what Marks would never be an option. Assuming you want to be competitive (a view I always have), viable army list options are drastically cut from the outset. Attempting to go with a fluffy theme may create something overly powerful, or may be shooting yourself in the foot.
Just Tony
So what would you recommend for Tzeentch? Trying to steer clear of the power dice spam and definitely a combat lord who is also the equivalent level spell caster, THAT was too much. This is coming from someone who runs the Tzeentch army, mainly because of the lack of shooting.

And since we aren't touching 7th in my club bar two or three rules from the BRB, no need to address that rule set. Well, except for comparing the three books to see what was OTT, what was NERF, and the balanced version of a unit between.
Father, soldier, musician, Transformers fan, masochistic junior moderator type thing.
If you're looking for a straight up stat bonus, it's a bit hard to say. S, T and A are the main ones where a single point can help, and Ld can have a place (that place being the General), but all other stats are fairly weak in terms of what a single point boost can give. Weapon Skill or Save are probably the next most useful in a Beasts army, though certainly worse than the others (which may be fine if properly points balanced). I'd probably recommend WS (which can be thought of as foresight of the opponent's moves), as poor Armour Saves are a bit of a Beastmen trope (and +1 to a lousy Armour Save does little).
Weapon Skill is a bit like Initiative though, in that it's not very granular- but at least it comes up more often and can be seen as both an offensive and defensive boost.

I really liked the old Warrior-Wizard ability of Tzeentch, but agree that a level 4 combat-monster Lord could be a bit much. I did start playing in ~4th ed though, where Wizard Lords were all combat monsters as well, so it never struck me as too weird a thing to exist.

Tzeentch is definitely my favourite Chaos God, and I planned on painting my Beastmen up to be an all-Tzeentch force. Unfortunately when the 7th ed book removed the ability to take my beloved Dragon Ogres with my Beasts my army design and motivation fell apart. One day I will return to them.
Just Tony
Look at my army pics again in my Beastmen battle report, I went with the tiger striped Tzeentch scheme from the Beasts of Chaos book.

Granted Initiative is something that is only of use part of the time, but I feel that Weapon Skill might be a bit much, especially if it takes the WS to 5 on a unit that shouldn't have it. Picture M@A hitting BM units on a 5+, something seems intrinsically wrong with that.
Father, soldier, musician, Transformers fan, masochistic junior moderator type thing.
I find it a little odd that you're concerned about a WS boost causing Men at Arms to hit on 5's (a rare event, as WS2 is uncommon), but you're not concerned by a T boost, which takes most Beastmen units to T5 or above, meaning S3 attacks now need 6's to wound (and S3 is, of course, very common).

Additionally, the T boost is nearly always useful (providing a bonus against a S of up to 6 or 7, which is fairly rare).
WS5 changes nothing compared to WS4 when fighting WS3 (probably the most common WS), and only provides a +1 to-hit bonus against WS4 (the second most common WS). It is much less effective in boosting attacks than a simple +1A.
+1WS does almost nothing for most characters at Hero level (being WS6 is rarely different to WS5), though at least at Lord level it is useful again (WS7)- though at that level you also have the chance to boost Lords to T6- I still expect Tzeentch would be the least chosen Mark.
Just Tony
My lack of concern with the T boost is because I am looking at the 3rd Ed. 40K codex for inspiration. They kept the flavor of Chaos without being imbalanced, and the marked units were a great example of that.

I also have a major issue with ANYTHING Chaos being WS5 on Core troops. It's one thing I never understood: we are better hand to hand fighters than Elves who have been practicing their skills for centuries because WE ARE ANGRY!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Stupidest part of Chaos ever. I'd also make Warriors of Chaos Special in their army list, but that's neither here nor there.

Hmmmmmmmmmm, -1 to hit Tzeentch with missile weapons? I don't want Gors hitting anyone on 3+ as that seems inherently wrong, but a quick dodge due to Tzeentch's whispers seems appropriate.
Father, soldier, musician, Transformers fan, masochistic junior moderator type thing.
Yes, -1 to-hit from missile weapons would be a good option.
The only possible concern is whether it does anything that requires no to-hit roll, and what about characters without that Mark in a unit with that Mark? (If I remember rightly Undivided can go in any unit, right?)
Those are pretty minor issues though.

Are you keeping the 7th ed book magic items? I glanced through it recently and saw the +1S banner. Stacking that with a further +1S or +1A would make a really nasty unit (though the banner is expensive and vulnerable, and the unit would be expensive).

Please let us know of any lists you come up with or games you play.
Just Tony
I don't want stackable benefits, in my mind that's the problem with AOS for sure, and the last two Warhammers as well.

-1 to hit would be decent for both shooting and hand to hand as it makes them better at defence but changes nothing in offense. I think I'll go with that.

In 6th, you couldn't mix marked characters and units like that.
Father, soldier, musician, Transformers fan, masochistic junior moderator type thing.
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