Shadow Wars: Rules Feedback and FAQ

Discuss every aspect of the Shadow War stand-alone game.
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Peregrim
Shas'La
Posts: 93

Re: Shadow Wars: Rules Feedback and FAQ

Post#11 » Apr 18 2017 10:10

Kakapo42 wrote:In regards to carbines, an idea stuck me the other day as a possible way of representing the underslung grenade launcher. What if a successful hit from a pulse carbine inflicted a temporary penalty on the target's initiative? I figure it could be a good way to reflect the disorientating effect of the photon grenade's blast, and a flat -1 penalty for either the remainder of the turn or just the remainder of the shooting phase could be simple enough, but I wonder if this might be too powerful or how much it would help with some of the more glaring shortcomings of the Tau list.


A idea that Panzer and I came up with is, instead of firing the pulse carbine, pathfinders could launch a photon grenade using a small blast template, and models under the template are automatically pinned.
  • Blast templates are easier to hit with, overcoming our poor accuracy. Chance to pin multiple enemies.
  • Reflects the fact that our carbines are Pinning weapons in WH40K, but are poor at pinning in SW:A. Captures combined-arms / team support fluff of tau combat.
  • Trade-off of potentially wounding an enemy target / taking it out of action versus reliably pinning it.
  • Is reliably pinning enemies fun to play against? With carbines and photon grenades available to our basic models, potentially a lot of pinning attacks preventing enemy models from taking actions.

Vay wrote:Drones should be gear. Gear that has a model, like they always have been.

A potential problem with that is if the model that purchased the drone dies, you lose the drone. Risky for a 50 - 110 point piece of gear.

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Peregrim
Shas'La
Posts: 93

Re: Shadow Wars: Rules Feedback and FAQ

Post#12 » Apr 18 2017 11:11

Panzer wrote:3. Agreed, I fear though it might replace the Rail Rifle completely in a list. Unreliable is very weak. It rarely happens to roll a double 1 on your ammo check. Even more rare than regular 40k gets hot. And a small blast is way more reliable to hit than a regular shot.
Having access to a high impact weapon would be really helpful though!

It seems like Unreliable was balanced for the Ork's basic guns and then used as a replacement for Gets Hot. I chose Unreliable as a rule because it's also used for other weapons with a second profile like our Ion Rifle's overcharge profile (e.g. plasma weapons), but I agree that it's a little weak for those.

Perhaps the damage of the overcharge profile should be reduced to 1 (rather than D3). Then the overcharge profile has a better chance to hit and can potentially wound multiple targets while the standard profile can potentially deal multiple wounds to one target.

Panzer wrote:5. Agreed. Might be a bit strong on the Stealth Suit but it's a Spec-Op after all so he is allowed to be strong. We just have to be careful that he doesn't become an auto include due guaranteeing a win.

I used the same wording as the Harlequin's flip belt. It definitely offers some powerful movement options, but I don't think it's too much.

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Panzer
Shas'La
Posts: 1150

Re: Shadow Wars: Rules Feedback and FAQ

Post#13 » Apr 18 2017 11:36

BillyBones wrote:I have an idea for the carbine to better represent it's pinning ability, as it uses photon grenades to pin, these grenades in turn blind and disorient the target rather striking him down using sheer force. To represent this ability there are two options, either give the carbine another profile with small/large blast, S1 AP- with rule that model that is hit is automatically pinned (even those that can be only pinned by high strength weapons and they can't test early to recover), the other option would be just to add this rule to the regular shot. To counterweight the effect it could be bought as special ammunition.

Everything pins automatically just by hitting the enemy in Shadow Wars. ;)

Vay wrote:- BC should not be a heavy weapon. A Heavy bolter which more than doubles the range is a heavy weapon. It also is only on an operative and a drone who can choose it.

- We could use a heavy weapon for Tau. A drone platform with a FW being our specialist would work. That gets you SMS and Missle. And that moves RR and IR to basic weapons. SMS and Rocket are on the right range for Heavy. Our pod would be like the Eldar gun platform.

- Drones should be gear. Gear that has a model, like they always have been.

- PC should have a grenade launcher standard. Upgrade to frag/EMP.

- A battle suit should have been our operative. The stealth suit could have been our specialist as well. Look at chaos for how that would work.


I think RR and IR are fine as Special weapons. Our Pulse Carbines already pack a punch, no need for even more strong basic weapons.
I think having access to the DS8 would be a good idea though

Drones don't have to be gear. Just make them not count towards the 3-10 fighter you can take.

I wouldn't mind a Crisis as Spec-Op but I really don't mind the ones we already have.

Peregrim wrote:
Kakapo42 wrote:In regards to carbines, an idea stuck me the other day as a possible way of representing the underslung grenade launcher. What if a successful hit from a pulse carbine inflicted a temporary penalty on the target's initiative? I figure it could be a good way to reflect the disorientating effect of the photon grenade's blast, and a flat -1 penalty for either the remainder of the turn or just the remainder of the shooting phase could be simple enough, but I wonder if this might be too powerful or how much it would help with some of the more glaring shortcomings of the Tau list.


A idea that Panzer and I came up with is, instead of firing the pulse carbine, pathfinders could launch a photon grenade using a small blast template, and models under the template are automatically pinned.
  • Blast templates are easier to hit with, overcoming our poor accuracy. Chance to pin multiple enemies.
  • Reflects the fact that our carbines are Pinning weapons in WH40K, but are poor at pinning in SW:A. Captures combined-arms / team support fluff of tau combat.
  • Trade-off of potentially wounding an enemy target / taking it out of action versus reliably pinning it.
  • Is reliably pinning enemies fun to play against? With carbines and photon grenades available to our basic models, potentially a lot of pinning attacks preventing enemy models from taking actions.

Woah hold on there. I never said instead. I always said additionally. The Photon grenade launcher on the Carbine was never a primary firemode and always used in addition to the regular shooting in the fluff.

BillyBones
Shas'La
Posts: 32

Re: Shadow Wars: Rules Feedback and FAQ

Post#14 » Apr 18 2017 11:57

Panzer wrote:
BillyBones wrote:I have an idea for the carbine to better represent it's pinning ability, as it uses photon grenades to pin, these grenades in turn blind and disorient the target rather striking him down using sheer force. To represent this ability there are two options, either give the carbine another profile with small/large blast, S1 AP- with rule that model that is hit is automatically pinned (even those that can be only pinned by high strength weapons and they can't test early to recover), the other option would be just to add this rule to the regular shot. To counterweight the effect it could be bought as special ammunition.

Everything pins automatically just by hitting the enemy in Shadow Wars. ;)



Yes I'am aware of that, what I meant is that it would also pin those other creatures which are not afected by normal weapons (tyranid warriors, terminators etc.) and it would also prevent everybody from testing to recover early, so they would stay pinned until next turn.

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Peregrim
Shas'La
Posts: 93

Re: Shadow Wars: Rules Feedback and FAQ

Post#15 » Apr 18 2017 12:04

Panzer wrote:Woah hold on there. I never said instead. I always said additionally. The Photon grenade launcher on the Carbine was never a primary firemode and always used in addition to the regular shooting in the fluff.

Do you mean that in the shooting phase, a pathfinder with pulse carbine and photon grenades should be able to fire both the pulse carbine and the photon grenade (1 S5 shot and one pinning small blast)?

I think that would be too reliable at pinning multiple enemies, and I don't think it would be fun to play against for armies with low I and who don't have special rules to ignore pinning. Even as an 'instead of firing' option, I'm wary of giving all our guys with pulse carbines the option to fire small blast templates since photon grenades are currently very cheap.

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Panzer
Shas'La
Posts: 1150

Re: Shadow Wars: Rules Feedback and FAQ

Post#16 » Apr 18 2017 12:14

Peregrim wrote:
Panzer wrote:Woah hold on there. I never said instead. I always said additionally. The Photon grenade launcher on the Carbine was never a primary firemode and always used in addition to the regular shooting in the fluff.

Do you mean that in the shooting phase, a pathfinder with pulse carbine and photon grenades should be able to fire both the pulse carbine and the photon grenade (1 S5 shot and one pinning small blast)?

I think that would be too reliable at pinning multiple enemies, and I don't think it would be fun to play against for armies with low I and who don't have special rules to ignore pinning. Even as an 'instead of firing' option, I'm wary of giving all our guys with pulse carbines the option to fire small blast templates since photon grenades are currently very cheap.


Re-read the blast rules for SW:A. It's not super reliable to pin multiple enemies with that. You always have to center the blast over the target and other models have to be covered 100% by it as well or you'll have to roll a 4+ to see whether they get hit as well or not.
It also does nothing else than pinning and keep in mind that once you have to roll for an ammo check you have no grenades left for the rest of the mission...with our BS3 it's not that unlikely for us to have to roll a 6+ to hit.

BillyBones
Shas'La
Posts: 32

Re: Shadow Wars: Rules Feedback and FAQ

Post#17 » Apr 18 2017 04:22

Also kinda unique for Tau could be building the list exclusively around troopers without specialists as a firewarrior team. In sone previous codexes there was alto an entry for an elite FW team as an ethereal honour guard. My idea is as follows:

Leader would be a Cadre Fireblade 4+ armour, combat blade (possibly a bonding knife with some buffs) and a marker light.

Troopers would be Shas'ui with, same stats as normal, only with BS 4 and only A1, 4+ armour and a combat blade.

Newbies Shas'la with their current profile, same equipment.

The team would consist of 12 models and would have access to 2 drones (gun, ML, that one with field amplifier as do they have now, and I'm not sure whether to give them access to the grav wave and pulse accelerator) - drones would have the same stats as in normal game, but would also have similar advantages as are described in the hover drone for ethereal. And would also propose one change in pinning and that is always can test to recover early and if the fail they roll d6 and on 4+ they just loose thir function for the turn, but can move freely, if they fail they can't do anything including moving.

Gun drone would also have and reroll for shooting and for the first failed ammo roll. ML drone would do the same thing an ML does now, and the field amplifeier would give in invulnerable save 6+ or 5+ in combination with field amplifier relay (the thing that breachers have) in a radius 6''.

The other speciality would be the gun turret. There could be only one and it would auto deploy at the begining of the game and would be imobile, in order to shoot there has to be a model near it (and possibly forgo it's shooting), it would have BS 3 T5 and 4+ save, two options for it would be missile pod with stats similar to autocannon and SMS with S5, damage 1, AP -1, sustain 2 and it would ignore all negative modifiers and also camo cloaks. It would still need LOS I think. Pinning would be similar to drones. In games with various number of models it would be automaticaly deployd if you are defender, but it can't be used at all as an attacker (deploying it would kinda give up the element of surprise).

Special rules for the Tau would be bonding ritual are quite OK, but I would add one thing and that would be to count as I3 for the purpose of testing to recover early in the given radius.

Supporting fire is OK.

Equipment would be the same as it is now with these changes.
Pulse carbine get sustain 1 and option to buy the photon granades as special ammo (S1 dmg1 AP-, small blast, targget is pinned even if it can only be pinned by high S weapon and it can't test early to recover - or maybe counts as I1 for recovery test)
Pulse rifles with range 30, S5 dmg1, AP -2
Pulse blaster with range 0-5 where it gets +2 to hit, S6, dmg d3 AP - 4, range 5-10, to hit +1, S5, dmg 1 AP -2, sustain 1 and range 10-15 with S4 dmg 1 AP- small blast.

Markerlight would be restricred only to the drone and fireblade or maybe up to two other models, but I'm not sure about that, otherwise it would work the same.
There would be an option to buy the field amplifier relay for some points, which would work together with the amplifier drone.

There would be no red dot laser, telescopic sight and camo.

Of course point values woud have to be adjusted accordingly.

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Rizzle
Kor'La
Posts: 93

Re: Shadow Wars: Rules Feedback and FAQ

Post#18 » Apr 18 2017 04:46

Kakapo42 wrote:I thought I'd quickly throw up a couple of counter-points to these two...


Good stuff! Part of the reason I wanted to lay out my assumptions in evaluating the theme of the Tau list (and any suggested tweaks) was to get critique or consensus. As it happens, I agree entirely with you - hopefully we're splitting the same hair. :D

In terms of attrition, I definitely mean it in the sense of dauntless infantry engaged in high risk operations either at or beyond the front line of a war zone, rather than the "wave after wave of my own men" attrition that, say, an Astra Militarum force might suffer.

Similarly, I'm 100% down with access to high tech toys in a Tau list being thematic. I wanted to tease out the subtle distinction between how a veteran imperial guardsman ("this is my scoped, designated marksman rifle; they are many others, but this one is mine") might approach this differently to a Shas'la ("this is my team; there are many like it and we serve the Greater Good").




I think it might be worth spinning out discussion of pulse carbine variant rules and developing other alternate concepts into the Experimental Rules Lab. We seem to be on the same page of wanting a little more granularity between 'miss' and 'kill' on the carbine, and the ways that modelling the underslung photon grenade launcher might get us there.
That way we can incubate some reasonable house rules and this thread can continue focus on pinpointing specific concerns with the balance of the printed kill team lists.

On that note - people who have played a handful of missions, how do you feel about Pathfinder's ability to contest each objective type? The missions I've done well in have been boosted by the M6 of drones, alongside their durability. I am, however, dreading being the defender on The Raid. That's partly due to I2, with access to I2.5 on the Recon Drone :sad:
Does anyone believe there any missions that Tau are wholly unsuited to beyond our inability to fight toe to toe against other lists? Or rather, could we get the list to a competitive state with small nudges, or is there evidence that a more involved fix would be required?

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Panzer
Shas'La
Posts: 1150

Re: Shadow Wars: Rules Feedback and FAQ

Post#19 » Apr 18 2017 10:52

BillyBones wrote:Also kinda unique for Tau could be building the list exclusively around troopers without specialists as a firewarrior team. In sone previous codexes there was alto an entry for an elite FW team as an ethereal honour guard. My idea is as follows:

Leader would be a Cadre Fireblade 4+ armour, combat blade (possibly a bonding knife with some buffs) and a marker light.

Troopers would be Shas'ui with, same stats as normal, only with BS 4 and only A1, 4+ armour and a combat blade.

Newbies Shas'la with their current profile, same equipment.

The team would consist of 12 models and would have access to 2 drones (gun, ML, that one with field amplifier as do they have now, and I'm not sure whether to give them access to the grav wave and pulse accelerator) - drones would have the same stats as in normal game, but would also have similar advantages as are described in the hover drone for ethereal. And would also propose one change in pinning and that is always can test to recover early and if the fail they roll d6 and on 4+ they just loose thir function for the turn, but can move freely, if they fail they can't do anything including moving.

Gun drone would also have and reroll for shooting and for the first failed ammo roll. ML drone would do the same thing an ML does now, and the field amplifeier would give in invulnerable save 6+ or 5+ in combination with field amplifier relay (the thing that breachers have) in a radius 6''.

The other speciality would be the gun turret. There could be only one and it would auto deploy at the begining of the game and would be imobile, in order to shoot there has to be a model near it (and possibly forgo it's shooting), it would have BS 3 T5 and 4+ save, two options for it would be missile pod with stats similar to autocannon and SMS with S5, damage 1, AP -1, sustain 2 and it would ignore all negative modifiers and also camo cloaks. It would still need LOS I think. Pinning would be similar to drones. In games with various number of models it would be automaticaly deployd if you are defender, but it can't be used at all as an attacker (deploying it would kinda give up the element of surprise).

Special rules for the Tau would be bonding ritual are quite OK, but I would add one thing and that would be to count as I3 for the purpose of testing to recover early in the given radius.

Supporting fire is OK.

Equipment would be the same as it is now with these changes.
Pulse carbine get sustain 1 and option to buy the photon granades as special ammo (S1 dmg1 AP-, small blast, targget is pinned even if it can only be pinned by high S weapon and it can't test early to recover - or maybe counts as I1 for recovery test)
Pulse rifles with range 30, S5 dmg1, AP -2
Pulse blaster with range 0-5 where it gets +2 to hit, S6, dmg d3 AP - 4, range 5-10, to hit +1, S5, dmg 1 AP -2, sustain 1 and range 10-15 with S4 dmg 1 AP- small blast.

Markerlight would be restricred only to the drone and fireblade or maybe up to two other models, but I'm not sure about that, otherwise it would work the same.
There would be an option to buy the field amplifier relay for some points, which would work together with the amplifier drone.

There would be no red dot laser, telescopic sight and camo.

Of course point values woud have to be adjusted accordingly.

Sorry but no. That's going too far. Not just that it would make Tau potentially too strong (again, our only problem is being outranged and outgunned while being more squishy. If you make us as durable as AM with additional armor, same BS, more special weapons while still having our stronger than average basic weapon we would tilt towards the other direction of the balance scale).
But aside from that, your change suggestions are not not adjustments but rather a complete rewrite of the Tau rules in SW:A and making it into a more super veteran Firewarrior team. I think we still want to keep the flavour of it being a Pathfinder/Recon team. Also no Firewarrior ever has BS4. Even Shas'Ui have BS3. Fireblade and Darkstrider are huge exceptions.
Tau shoot good because of their Markerlights, not because they are so good at shooting. Keep in mind that Tau also have bad sight. ;)
If you want BS4 Firewarrior get them by advanving them in a campaign but they have no place as basic unit choice imo.

Rizzle wrote:On that note - people who have played a handful of missions, how do you feel about Pathfinder's ability to contest each objective type? The missions I've done well in have been boosted by the M6 of drones, alongside their durability. I am, however, dreading being the defender on The Raid. That's partly due to I2, with access to I2.5 on the Recon Drone :sad:
Does anyone believe there any missions that Tau are wholly unsuited to beyond our inability to fight toe to toe against other lists? Or rather, could we get the list to a competitive state with small nudges, or is there evidence that a more involved fix would be required?

Just by reading I'd definitely say Raid and by personal experience with my short range CSM against AM the Kill mission as well. Haven't played a lot other missions yet because of dice rolls. :D
Likewise though I think Raid could be a great mission for us if we happen to be the attacker since it allows us to get into range before the enemy can shoot or hide unless we get very unlucky. Again, our basic weapons aren't bad once we get into range.

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ARC'Thunder
Shas'Vre
Posts: 845

Re: Shadow Wars: Rules Feedback and FAQ

Post#20 » Apr 18 2017 11:49

Great work thus far guys!

I'll update the two front posts tomorrow in a better format (I had quite a late day at work so I didn't get the time to do some of the reorganizing today), as well as chime in with some of my own ideas.

BillyBones, while I appreciate your participation, I want to try to steer this conversation away from wishlisting. I know we're walking a fine line on that topic, but I mean to use the existing framework given to us by GW to improve it—not rewrite the entire kill team.

In reference to other ideas in the thread:
    Pulse Carbine
    I'm in support of adding an underslung photon grenade ammo type or firing mode for a points cost:
    Ammunition
    Photon Grenade Launcher* ......... 20 points
    * Can be purchased for pulse carbines only

    Photon Grenade Launcher
    Pulse carbines are often fitted with an underslung photon grenade launcher that launch these usually defensive grenades great distances. The bright flashes emitted by these grenades allow pathfinders to pin and confuse enemies so that they may advance on their targets for the killing blow, or retreat to better positions.

    A pulse carbine with an attached photon grenade launcher is given an alternative firing profile that you may choose to use instead of its normal profile.

    Range Short 0-12" Long 12"-24" To Hit Short - Long - Str. 1 Dam 1 Save Mod. - Ammo Roll 7+
    Large Blast: A photon grenade emits a bright burst of light that can blind enemies or fry sensors, and so uses a large blast template.
    By using the ammunition rules instead of a pure alternative firing profile, you can circumvent the issues around ammo rolls affecting the normal fire of the gun. Given the nature of the large blast as a pinning device, and it's great distance when compared to other grenades, I feel like the points value and ammo rolls are fairly reasonable (without any playtesting, of course).

    Another alternative might be to see some older Necromunda rules. I think they used to have rules for smoke or fog, and it would be cool if the photon grenades functioned like smoke grenades and imposed a penalty to hit to affected models.

    Also, I can't say I fully support increasing the base range of the pulse carbine. I think it's a difficult situation. Even though the Skitarii carbines, shotguns, and sluggas have increased range from the tabletop, we can still increase ours via the accelerator drone whereas most "close ranged guns" aren't able to mount a telescopic sight. Although, most armies aren't limited to only one basic weapon that has such a short range, and even our range increase is only 6" where other basic guns usually get an additional 12". If we were to increase the base long range of the carbine to 24" (maybe 20"-22"? Shadow Wars doesn't seem to worry about strange weapon ranges) it would most certainly need to be more expensive at 35-40 points.

    Burst Cannon: I have mixed feelings about the burst cannon being re-classified as a special weapon. I think the move or shoot mechanic works for the stealthsuit which is reliably difficult to hit; it can get within the 18" range safely for a turn to fire in the next. Obviously that leaves the recon drone in a weird spot though, because it's not only easy to hit, but also has a worse save (part of the solution might be to give the recon drone its deserved second wound and make it unshakeable so it has the means to weather hits in order to fire). An alternative to removing it's heavy status might be to increase its range to 24"-28"; this would allow the fairly mobile drones/stealthsuit to maneuver into good positions that could still fire at reacting targets and overwatch effectively.

    Mind also that the fusion blaster is also classified as a heavy weapon, and I think the reason for both of them to be in this category is to encumber the user.

    Drone Limits: I agree with making drones a separate 3 models from the base team. It reflects the tabletop and again, frees up our team composition in a protracted campaign.

    Jetpacks: I like what Peregrim stated, but I'm not sure about ignoring falling damage. While it makes up for the lowered initiative of the drones, who shouldn't be prone to falling given they are permanently floating disks, I could still see arguments that they may not recover from a dive or fall in time to slow their descent. Even the Chaos Raptor and it's jump pack can still take falling damage (although it has a much greater movement value).

    Special Weapons: Again, Peregrim's idea for the alternate profile for the ion rifle seems solid, and I think I support the idea of decreasing the blast damage from D3 to 1. Although, if that's the case, part of me thinks the ion rifle should have simply 1 damage all around, but use the normal strength values from the tabletop.

    If that's the case, I think the rail rifle could stay at d3 damage, but it should have it's save mod adjusted to be closer to that of a meltagun, or at the very least a plasma gun (-5 or -4, respectively). The more variable wounds, combined with a better armor penetration feels more accurate to the lore, the tabletop, and keeps it distinct and valuable when compared to an updated ion rifle. Although, the increased ability to pen armor without qualifying as a High Impact weapon, may cause some weird situations wherein Terminators should obviously be diving for cover because it's piercing their armor, but it isn't strong enough for them to want to?

Anyways, I have to head out for the night. I'll see what gets posted tomorrow, and hopefully have time to restructure the front posts to reflect the discussion and proposed changes thus far.

o7

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