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Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year

 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 7:27 pm 
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Blip wrote:
Ha! Different strokes for different folks!

Must admit an elegant suppression/pinning mechanic is one of the first things i look for in a game system. Its the think that i liked most about Epic40k and i still think this aspect is better in 3rd as it takes account of weight of fire and degrades slowly over turns. In almost every other way EA was an improvement though.

As for failed activation in the first turn - isn't that representing lack of cohesion, readiness and surprise? I don't really imagine forces milling around doing nothing - they are still arriving, demounting transports, prepping equipment, radioing in scouting intel and awaiting orders. Not that i have fought myself, but i don't think armies have lined up in two neat rows waiting for the starting whistle since the 1800s?

Besides, in EA you don't get to do nothing - still get a hold action! :-)

But hey, in the immortal words of L4 : dwefynm! ;-)



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But armies don't do "they are still arriving, demounting transports, prepping equipment, radioing in scouting intel and awaiting orders" in range of the enemy. They drive to the area where the combat is going to happen, with all of their gear already checked and re checked and everyone is ready to go, unless one army is surprising the other. Surprising an army is very difficult to do with modern day equipment. There is so much surveillance equipment out there that it is almost impossible to surprise an entire army. It is very easy to do to a squad of guys walking around the mountains of Afghanistan. And it is easy to do to a unit of guys driving Humvees around. But an entire army is a completely different matter.

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 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 7:56 pm 
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Roadkill Zombie wrote:
I guess I should have been more clear in my first post. I think the mechanic of not being able to move your troops around because they are being suppressed by the enemy, or because their vehicles have been damaged by enemy fire isn't so bad once there is a reason for it that makes sense.


There's still danger and uncertainty, which again is being taken into account with the activation roll. Your troops are subject to the threat of teleportation, air assault, planetfall, orbital and artillery bombardment, and then some in the deployment zone. If they haven't been trained well enough (part of what determines their initiative value) all of that is going to affect their ability to perform. Some of them are going to hear and see those threats coming (whether they're the intended target or not), and their shouts of warning are going to lead to confusion. That will lead to inaction.

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 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 8:21 pm 
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But I don't think the threat of it is enough to unnerve super human killing machines like Space Marines. Nor is it enough to unnerve Eldar who think everyone in the galaxy is beneath them in just about every way, thus, no fear. And it certainly doesn't apply to things like Tyranids. (And even though Tyranids were never in the original version of EA, I'm sure they had plans to do add them later that just never panned out). As for Black Legion, Really? They've seen unimaginable horrors far beyond what anything in the mortal realm could do. I highly doubt the threat of anything would make them stop activating.

I really just think it is bad game design. This doesn't make the game as a whole bad, just that one part of it.

And to be honest, I think the only reason you have never heard anyone except for me complain about it is because 1) It is a dead game. This means anyone who still plays it is doing so because they like the way the game plays. So in this case, no one would complain. 2)Those people who don't like it, you would never play with in the first place because they don't like it, thus you would never get the chance to hear their opinion on it. 3) People who don't like the game are not going to come on a forum dedicated to it just to say they hate that one specific rule.

However, I have been on other sites that definitely have complained about that rule before. And when I tried to get a group of guys involved in the EA version of the game (I was hoping to get a community going), a group of six guys looked at the rules, and after seeing that one rule, said no way. They hated the idea of not being able to activate their models in the first turn of the game, even if it is not always going to happen. Just the chance of it happening was enough to turn them off of the game. They made some comment to the effect of it being too similar to another GW rule from a game called Blood Bowl. I asked them what they meant. They said it reminded them of that "stupid rule in Blood Bowl where if you fail a leadership test, your turn is over".

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 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 8:44 pm 
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Being initiative 1+, Marines, Aspect Warriors, Black Legion and Tyranids wouldn't be unnerved by the threat and will do whatever you want them to do. However, once they come under fire (and receive the -1 for having blast markers) that's another story.

The internet being what it is, there's plenty of people who fall into one of your three categories and complain about something they don't like. I believe that's true of every rule system who has had someone read it who wasn't the author.

As to people not liking fog/friction mechanics, that's on them. Nothing you've wrote though convinces me that it's the "worst mechanic", the killer of Epic Armageddon, nor one of the number one rules of game design to not include it. It's in many rule sets for good reason. It makes them believable and adds to the immersion.

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 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:23 pm 
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I think you have a point that EA fans are a self selecting group. I can also see why, if coming from a GW background 3rd and EA feels a very different type of game. I guess personally, outside of GW i mainly play historical games where fog of war is usually key to the system - therefor for once in 3rd Ed I saw an opportunity to play a slightly more "realistic" rule set in the 40k universe. As one of my old gaming buddies used to say there are two types of wargames - WARgames and warGAMES - meaning neither is superior, just a different mindset.


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 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:24 pm 
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Well, lets think about that for a minute.

What happened in Magic the Gathering, when the decks showed up that made it so the guy sitting across from you never gets a turn because you've done a combination of cards that makes it so he can do absolutely nothing? So you are able to sit there and play your cards on him, but he can't play any on you? Enough people complained about those kind of shenanigans that they stopped allowing those cards in normal games. They are banned in almost every format of that game. That is how bad of an idea that is. And we know millions of people play Magic the Gathering. So this also means millions of people don't like those kinds of rules.

Now what about when Sorscha in Warmachine could make three run moves and come in and freeze your entire army so you couldn't move, then she would kill your warcaster and game over? After enough complaints about that, they nerfed her down. (I was working for the company at that time and the amount of complaints about those kind of mechanics would fill your house if they were in paper letter form). They've had to nerf her over and over again because that kind of nonsense was just unfun for sooo many people. As you can see from the way she is now, compared to the way she used to be, they had to seriously re-think how she plays numerous times. While she can still freeze a good part of your army, it isn't as easy for her to get to you to do so as it used to be. And people still complain about her regularly. Again, many thousands of people play Warmachine. And those kinds of rules do not sit well with them either.

In both of those cases, the concept of making it so your opponent doesn't get to do anything, did not sit well with literally millions of people. So while it may make a game more realistic in your mind, from a game design perspective it is a bad idea as proven above.

And as I said, if a game is built around models not being able to do something because of enemy actions that make sense, such as shooting at you so you have to keep your head down or die, sure, most people can see how you wouldn't be able to move, so they are more willing to accept that rule in that particular case.

But when it can affect your whole army, as it can if you aren't playing a 1+ initiative army, and there is no really good reason for it, that doesn't sit well with quite a lot of people, again, as evidenced above. The simple fact that it is possible for a persons entire army to spend an entire game without activating, especially if it isn't due to enemy actions, is terrible. It doesn't matter if the odds are mostly against it. It can still happen, and that turns people off.

You see, one of Jervis's problems with game design, is he didn't really think things through. Back in the days of 5th edition 40k, when people were spamming things to make OP armies, I remember reading one of the white dwarfs where someone asked him a question about why he allowed such things in the game. All he would have had to do was limit those overpowered units to one. You know what his answer was? He put those things in the game, thinking people would limit themselves, and his honest opinion was that, while it was possible to spam those overpowered units, he didn't really think anyone would be able to afford to do so, nor would do so because everyone was a gentleman.

We see how well THAT turned out.

It is this same flawed game design thinking that he has done here. The simple fix is, you shouldn't have to take an initiative test until forced to do so through enemy action.

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 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:38 pm 
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The other side is that some of us like those kinds of tests in games. Blood Bowl, Song of Blades and Heroes, Dragon Rampant, and many others have the possibility of not doing anything. (Warmaster did too, right?) So rather than the idea that this is really bad always, I'm willing to accept that some don't like it. I've heard similar complaints in Chain of Command (one side can get multiple turns in a row). I think the least interesting answer to these is to make sure it doesn't happen.

But my favorite Epic is Epic 40K, by far. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 9:45 pm 
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Well, my answer isn't "make sure it doesn't happen." Instead, my answer is "make sure it doesn't happen for no good reason, nor happen in the first turn of the game, unless caused by enemy action."

Give people the ability to at least play their models. If that means you only get one turn with them, so be it, but at least you got to play them. Not just set them up, try to play them, and fail.

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 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Thu Apr 20, 2017 11:34 pm 
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Interesting - I have to say I agree with Roadkill. Having a formation fail to activate for no good reason is very frustrating. It's probably the single biggest reason I don't make much of an effort to play the game. A game should be fun, and at least start on a high. The player wants to feel victory is attainable if they plan and execute well. Having formations fail to activate straight off the bat before even getting a whiff of combat seems unnecessarily cruel. Double that feeling of frustration for a Minigeddon game. As for explanation or justification of the mechanic, one can justify most concepts with a bit of imagination but it doesn't make it good or right... ;)

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 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:15 am 
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Must admit I too became frustrated with alternating activations and the chance to fail your roll and not be able to do anything with your formation. In the end this mechanic and the tournement centric rigid focus of EA put me off the game completely.

I just play for fun and want to put lots of toys on the table for big battles and EA does not allow me to play the kind of games I want to play where as Epic 40k does, big battles in a reasonable time frame with simple game mechanic's and easy to remember rules. Epic 40k was so easy to tinker with as well if you didn't like a certain aspect just change it the rules stood up to such manipulation without getting broken in the process for the most part. Want to add a new unit just create the stats and of you go.The game was designed to focus the players on the role of being a general commanding an army and the game mechanics served that purpose, EA feels like i'm playing as a bunch of platoon or company commanders from my perspective. Don't get me wrong EA a good game but it dosen't serve my gaming requirements Epic 40k does.

So Epic 40k happy birthday your my favourite WARgame of all time and you just happen to gell perfectly with BFG another of my favoured games that uses very similar game mechanics, all IMHO of course.

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 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2017 10:00 am 
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Epic 40k is recognised internally as being one of GW's best games from a mechanics point of view.... but it didn't suit all the detailed models, and this situation lead to the birth of Battle Fleet Gothic which is a greatgame! I still love E40k though (with the Epic Mag updates...)

EA is my favourite version though, and I've never had a game where 8-10 formations didn't activate!

Now I'm looking forward to AT2


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 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2017 10:44 am 
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I fully agree to moredakka. Ea isn t that epic for me. I want giant armys, easy to play


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 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2017 11:50 am 
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Have to grudgingly agree about initiative tests actually. I think EA is the best game but I would still be happier with the game mechanics if there were one simple (but significant) change:
You only take an initiative test when retaining or have blast markers - these two situations represent different things, but both are valid situations where different armies could vary in the aptitude.

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 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:12 pm 
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Quote
Besides, in EA you don't get to do nothing - still get a hold action! :-)

But hey, in the immortal words of L4 : dwefynm! ;-) Quote
Is that Welsh ? ;)

Yes, something my long gone Gramma said, "Do What Works For YOU !" I added "Not Me !"
Regardless, the point is clear, me thinks ! ;D

As far as Activation - as I said we add that in SM1 based on a number of other we played in the past. And we agree, Order Counters must be used. It keeps track of who does what, while going back and forth like a chess game.

And something that has become abundantly clear to me recently. The New Gen of Epic Gamers, many who the first version they played was SM2/TL. Which again was "not my cup of grog" ... Which I equate more to Checkers not Chess ! :o

But I've noted at my own risk. GW Epic is not hard Sci-fi as I prefer. But much more like Sci-Fantasy. Which SM2/TL was the poster child. >:D And I don't like Sci-Fant at all. So we played Epic as hard core Sci-fi. And try to ignore much of the 40K "Fluffy" stuff which inevitably works it's way into the rules.

So again ... my mantra :

Use Activation with Order Counters

This hobby is about grown me playing with toys ...period. [In my distant youth I played 1 to 1 scale wargames in the ARMY Infantry, in places like Panama, the DMZ in the ROK, West Germany, etc., '79-'90...]
My life and gaming experiences which formed my opinions on gaming, etc. may be much different to many here.

So, and more, importantly DWWFU ...NM ! ;)


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 Post subject: Re: Warhammer Epic 40,000 is 20 years old this year
PostPosted: Fri Apr 21, 2017 1:17 pm 
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Ahhh yes I see what your point is. I actually like Kyrt's suggestion

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