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Squats back from CanCon (The Overlord Rant)

 Post subject: Re: Squats back from CanCon
PostPosted: Sun Jan 31, 2016 9:19 am 
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Elsaurio wrote:
However I kind of find that Squats partially sidestep most of the problems with activation: the super long range and maneuverability around cover means that Overlords are able to hit what they want and where they want (goliaths and spotter doom cannons too) meaning that the squat player generally doesn't have to wait - he can jump forward an take out that shadowsword or whatever before it gets a chance to take down the overlords.


This is one of the problems of Overlords that I see reported quite often but I cannot understand.
Even with playing TLofS surely opponents are using terrain to get the cover bonus for being partially obscured from view, so how can 6x5+ attacks be taking out opponents main threats in the first turn.


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 Post subject: Re: Squats back from CanCon
PostPosted: Sun Jan 31, 2016 10:29 am 
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Agree on that, overlords can be great for breaking fragile formations early doors but your opponent has to have made a deployment error (if they stick something behind terrain and you're playing without TLOS as we do in the UK you can't get it turn 1). Even in cover as Dave says you're on 5s possibly 6s. I've never taken out anything major on turn 1, or lost anything major on turn 1 to overlords where there wasn't a deployment error. Admittedly, a high activation count helps here as you can keep overlords back at deployment and chose the best targets.

I'd never send a single overlord against something like a warhound or shadowsword as they'll just turn round and destroy it but maybe I'm missing a trick. Even on 4s to hit the odds are that you'll do less than a wound against a shadowsword (0.75) or shielded warhound (0.43) and both would (at least) break you in return.

I know you're looking at the cheap activation count Elsaurio. I think that will help but there does seem to be a local meta issue here, if people are playing TLOS at tournies in Aus then overlords will be stronger than at tournies in Europe, plus as pointed out in another thread, you get into all sorts of gamey things like modelling them a foot off the ground. I'm not sure I have much of a solution for this if the way events are being run is fundementally different. Not a facetious question, just curious, but do you not find TLOS in epic leads to longer games and more bickering?

I think spotter might also be an issue here, if you double the overlord forward with your first activation and can then spank someone with a macro barrage with your 2nd (or even 11 non macro bp from a colossus) that makes life a lot easier.

My other totally irrelevant thought is if you're playing TLOS then why aren't players spamming silver towers at these tournaments? Sure the range is a bit less but you get Macros and can pop down and hide again? Plus they're fearless and once you get into 45cm range you have double the firepower of an overlord, ouch!

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 Post subject: Re: Squats back from CanCon
PostPosted: Sun Jan 31, 2016 9:44 pm 
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I don't like that it's possible to take lists all with all berserkers for core. I find it unfluffy. Besides that it would make the list a nudge less competitive to not have the option. I think the warrior brotherhoods should be made a 1+ choise.

When we started this list (I was part of Moscovians early discussion and playtester group) we tried to stay true to the old squat fluff. None of the big (company size) brotherhood army selection cards allowed for a only berserekers company so I think a 1+ warrior brotherhood can be easily justified from the fluff (for that and other reasons).

Overlords not as singles sounds like a good idea. That 5x overlords list looks rather nasty.


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 Post subject: Re: Squats back from CanCon
PostPosted: Mon Feb 01, 2016 8:20 am 
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dptdexys wrote:

This is one of the problems of Overlords that I see reported quite often but I cannot understand.
Even with playing TLofS surely opponents are using terrain to get the cover bonus for being partially obscured from view, so how can 6x5+ attacks be taking out opponents main threats in the first turn.



First up let me say as a Squat player I love my Overlords, and I'm certainly not going to nerf them out of spite!

Secondly let me clarify a few things.

Overlords are not some 'super shooty' unit able to one shot everything on the board, but what I stating is that they are consistently able to deal out a lot of firepower at long range to a wide variety of worthy opponents, and there is little you can do against them as they are so good at getting around the side of/over the top of terrain.

They are about 20% to 30% more shooty than their closest rivals (DC3 warhounds etc)


Second clarification is that Australia does not use some weird line of sight rules. The Cancon tournament used the vanilla line of sight rules out of the main rule book (something that we shorthand refer to as TLOS althought it isn't). A -1 save is applied liberally and you cannot shoot more than 10cm into any cover.
About 90% of our other tournaments and games utilize a more rigorous and abstract terrain rule system (with predetermined 'levels' of cover. While this cover system does provide more cover on average than the rulebook method, it does not really impact upon the performance of the Overlords, who are able to pop up over the cover reasonably well while the shadowswords of the world are worse off.


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 Post subject: Re: Squats back from CanCon (The Overlord Rant)
PostPosted: Mon Feb 01, 2016 9:25 am 
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StevekCole wrote:
Agree on that, overlords can be great for breaking fragile formations early doors but your opponent has to have made a deployment error (if they stick something behind terrain and you're playing without TLOS as we do in the UK you can't get it turn 1). Even in cover as Dave says you're on 5s possibly 6s. I've never taken out anything major on turn 1, or lost anything major on turn 1 to overlords where there wasn't a deployment error. Admittedly, a high activation count helps here as you can keep overlords back at deployment and chose the best targets.

I'd never send a single overlord against something like a warhound or shadowsword as they'll just turn round and destroy it but maybe I'm missing a trick. Even on 4s to hit the odds are that you'll do less than a wound against a shadowsword (0.75) or shielded warhound (0.43) and both would (at least) break you in return.

I know you're looking at the cheap activation count Elsaurio. I think that will help but there does seem to be a local meta issue here, if people are playing TLOS at tournies in Aus then overlords will be stronger than at tournies in Europe, plus as pointed out in another thread, you get into all sorts of gamey things like modelling them a foot off the ground. I'm not sure I have much of a solution for this if the way events are being run is fundementally different. Not a facetious question, just curious, but do you not find TLOS in epic leads to longer games and more bickering?

I think spotter might also be an issue here, if you double the overlord forward with your first activation and can then spank someone with a macro barrage with your 2nd (or even 11 non macro bp from a colossus) that makes life a lot easier.

My other totally irrelevant thought is if you're playing TLOS then why aren't players spamming silver towers at these tournaments? Sure the range is a bit less but you get Macros and can pop down and hide again? Plus they're fearless and once you get into 45cm range you have double the firepower of an overlord, ouch!



As stated in the post just above this, 90% of our games use abstract cover, and it was just this tournament that had rulebook cover rules.

Thanks for taking the time to crunch some numbers, but I'd like to crunch some more. When everyone is poo-poohing my claim about overlord firepower being to high, they invariably calculate it's abilities vs 4+ RA or some other titan void shield situation. While a Overlords are pretty good against 4+ RA, it is the worst situation for them (this being the domain of MW and TK). But let's run some further numbers

Warhound or Overlord shooting at Shadowsword (4+RA)
Warhounds are universally seen as one of the best and most versatile DC 3 War Engine out there. There are calls to try to restrict space marines and guard to stop taking 2 x 1 Warhounds. Lets look at their shooting.

At 45cm, and taking into account the slow firing Plasma Blastgun the warhound is going to do 0.75 wounds a turn to Baneblade.
A Overlord shooting at the same Shadowsword? The same 0.75 but it's able to do it at 75cm range with the ability to pop up over cover.

An Overlord even puts more hits if it's allowed to get within the same 45cm (0.79) or even 15cm (0.83)

Conclusion: an Overlord outshoots a Warhound and has longer range and the ability to pop up around cover.

It gets even worse if you move to targets with lighter armour:
Warhound vs Predator at 45cm: 1.5 wounds
Overlord vs Predator at 45cm: 1.83 wounds

Warhound vs Imperial Guard Infantry at 45cm: 3.5 wounds
Overlord vs Imperial Guard Infantry at 45cm: 4.3 wounds


Shadowswrd or Overlord shooting at Warhound (4+RA)
The Shadowsword is one hands down best and cheapest way to field a long-range anti-titan weapon.
Lets look at what happens when you're trying to bring down the warhound in the previous example. 1 Shadowsword isn't going to do it, let's try 2

2 Shadowswords vs warhound at 75cm: Both void shields taken down, 1.3 wounds on the titan
2 Overlords vs Warhound at 75cm: Both voidshields taken down, 1.7 wounds on the titan.

People forget that titans are not just armour, the void shields have to come down first and that Overlords are great at taking that off whereas TK is wasted. Holofields and Living Metal? Also better for mass battlecannon shots than a TK weapon.

But...but I can strip shields with a different unit before I shoot with the Shadowsword! But if you're bringing in supporting units to make the Shadowsword bring down a target, then by rights the squat player should be able to bring in other units to help the Overlord...*cough*cyclops*cough*

I'm not even going to calculate weaker targets, as the Overlord is easily better.

Conclusion: the Overlord outshoots even the Shadowsword.


Comparison vs Cover, target choice

I never meant to give the impression that the Overlord could 'total kill any major target in turn one'. It doesn't have to 'kill' an target, but take a few wounds off, add a few blast markers, strip a few void shields and a second overlords (or some other part of the squat army) helps finish the job. Remember that you have 5-6 of them!

I've found two overlords are a reliable way to destroy or at least break an opposing warhound/shadowsword. Two overlords will also put a serious dent in any mid range tank/infantry formation.

The ability to get line of sight is also under rated. Let's do a thought experiment with an army with 5 shadowswords. On the first turn you might get:

]1 Shadowsword with a clear line of sight to a good target
2 Shadowswords having to shoot through cover, or forced to shoot at a mediocre target
2 Shadowswords being unable to see anything, or only being able to shoot some useless scout unit.


Compare to 5 Overlords

2-3 Overlords being able to get a clear shot at a prime target
2-3 Overlords having to shoot into cover or a mediocre target.


It gets even better as the game wears on, with the Overlords getting easier and easier shots and the ability to sustain, which dramatically boosts their damage output (sustaining does little to help a volcano cannon or plasma blastgun.)

i'm happy to hear counter arguments!


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 Post subject: Re: Squats back from CanCon
PostPosted: Mon Feb 01, 2016 9:30 am 
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Elsaurio wrote:


Second clarification is that Australia does not use some weird line of sight rules. The Cancon tournament used the vanilla line of sight rules out of the main rule book (something that we shorthand refer to as TLOS althought it isn't). A -1 save is applied liberally and you cannot shoot more than 10cm into any cover.
About 90% of our other tournaments and games utilize a more rigorous and abstract terrain rule system (with predetermined 'levels' of cover. While this cover system does provide more cover on average than the rulebook method, it does not really impact upon the performance of the Overlords, who are able to pop up over the cover reasonably well while the shadowswords of the world are worse off.


Australia interprets the rulebook differently to nearly every other community, this has been established. So given the threads detailing how Australias TLOS interpretation works then its absolutely apparent that it would make a big difference in the Overlords case.

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 Post subject: Re: Squats back from CanCon
PostPosted: Mon Feb 01, 2016 9:34 am 
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Steve54 wrote:
Elsaurio wrote:


Second clarification is that Australia does not use some weird line of sight rules. The Cancon tournament used the vanilla line of sight rules out of the main rule book (something that we shorthand refer to as TLOS althought it isn't). A -1 save is applied liberally and you cannot shoot more than 10cm into any cover.
About 90% of our other tournaments and games utilize a more rigorous and abstract terrain rule system (with predetermined 'levels' of cover. While this cover system does provide more cover on average than the rulebook method, it does not really impact upon the performance of the Overlords, who are able to pop up over the cover reasonably well while the shadowswords of the world are worse off.


Australia interprets the rulebook differently to nearly every other community, this has been established. So given the threads detailing how Australias TLOS interpretation works then its absolutely apparent that it would make a big difference in the Overlords case.


Enlighten me please! I would like to hear how this works!

(And that isn't a sarcastic tone, I realise that there may be a very real difference in the way line of sight works between groups)


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 Post subject: Re: Squats back from CanCon (The Overlord Rant)
PostPosted: Mon Feb 01, 2016 9:37 am 
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Elsaurio wrote:
StevekCole wrote:
Agree on that, overlords can be great for breaking fragile formations early doors but your opponent has to have made a deployment error (if they stick something behind terrain and you're playing without TLOS as we do in the UK you can't get it turn 1). Even in cover as Dave says you're on 5s possibly 6s. I've never taken out anything major on turn 1, or lost anything major on turn 1 to overlords where there wasn't a deployment error. Admittedly, a high activation count helps here as you can keep overlords back at deployment and chose the best targets.

I'd never send a single overlord against something like a warhound or shadowsword as they'll just turn round and destroy it but maybe I'm missing a trick. Even on 4s to hit the odds are that you'll do less than a wound against a shadowsword (0.75) or shielded warhound (0.43) and both would (at least) break you in return.

I know you're looking at the cheap activation count Elsaurio. I think that will help but there does seem to be a local meta issue here, if people are playing TLOS at tournies in Aus then overlords will be stronger than at tournies in Europe, plus as pointed out in another thread, you get into all sorts of gamey things like modelling them a foot off the ground. I'm not sure I have much of a solution for this if the way events are being run is fundementally different. Not a facetious question, just curious, but do you not find TLOS in epic leads to longer games and more bickering?

I think spotter might also be an issue here, if you double the overlord forward with your first activation and can then spank someone with a macro barrage with your 2nd (or even 11 non macro bp from a colossus) that makes life a lot easier.

My other totally irrelevant thought is if you're playing TLOS then why aren't players spamming silver towers at these tournaments? Sure the range is a bit less but you get Macros and can pop down and hide again? Plus they're fearless and once you get into 45cm range you have double the firepower of an overlord, ouch!



As stated in the post just above this, 90% of our games use abstract cover, and it was just this tournament that had rulebook cover rules.

Thanks for taking the time to crunch some numbers, but I'd like to crunch some more. When everyone is poo-poohing my claim about overlord firepower being to high, they invariably calculate it's abilities vs 4+ RA or some other titan void shield situation. While a Overlords are pretty good against 4+ RA, it is the worst situation for them (this being the domain of MW and TK). But let's run some further numbers

Warhound or Overlord shooting at Shadowsword (4+RA)
Warhounds are universally seen as one of the best and most versatile DC 3 War Engine out there. There are calls to try to restrict space marines and guard to stop taking 2 x 1 Warhounds. Lets look at their shooting.

At 45cm, and taking into account the slow firing Plasma Blastgun the warhound is going to do 0.75 wounds a turn to Baneblade.
A Overlord shooting at the same Shadowsword? The same 0.75 but it's able to do it at 75cm range with the ability to pop up over cover.

An Overlord even puts more hits if it's allowed to get within the same 45cm (0.79) or even 15cm (0.83)

Conclusion: an Overlord outshoots a Warhound and has longer range and the ability to pop up around cover.

It gets even worse if you move to targets with lighter armour:
Warhound vs Predator at 45cm: 1.5 wounds
Overlord vs Predator at 45cm: 1.83 wounds

Warhound vs Imperial Guard Infantry at 45cm: 3.5 wounds
Overlord vs Imperial Guard Infantry at 45cm: 4.3 wounds


Shadowswrd or Overlord shooting at Warhound (4+RA)
The Shadowsword is one hands down best and cheapest way to field a long-range anti-titan weapon.
Lets look at what happens when you're trying to bring down the warhound in the previous example. 1 Shadowsword isn't going to do it, let's try 2

2 Shadowswords vs warhound at 75cm: Both void shields taken down, 1.3 wounds on the titan
2 Overlords vs Warhound at 75cm: Both voidshields taken down, 1.7 wounds on the titan.

People forget that titans are not just armour, the void shields have to come down first and that Overlords are great at taking that off whereas TK is wasted. Holofields and Living Metal? Also better for mass battlecannon shots than a TK weapon.

But...but I can strip shields with a different unit before I shoot with the Shadowsword! But if you're bringing in supporting units to make the Shadowsword bring down a target, then by rights the squat player should be able to bring in other units to help the Overlord...*cough*cyclops*cough*

I'm not even going to calculate weaker targets, as the Overlord is easily better.

Conclusion: the Overlord outshoots even the Shadowsword.


Comparison vs Cover, target choice

I never meant to give the impression that the Overlord could 'total kill any major target in turn one'. It doesn't have to 'kill' an target, but take a few wounds off, add a few blast markers, strip a few void shields and a second overlords (or some other part of the squat army) helps finish the job. Remember that you have 5-6 of them!

I've found two overlords are a reliable way to destroy or at least break an opposing warhound/shadowsword. Two overlords will also put a serious dent in any mid range tank/infantry formation.

The ability to get line of sight is also under rated. Let's do a thought experiment with an army with 5 shadowswords. On the first turn you might get:

]1 Shadowsword with a clear line of sight to a good target
2 Shadowswords having to shoot through cover, or forced to shoot at a mediocre target
2 Shadowswords being unable to see anything, or only being able to shoot some useless scout unit.


Compare to 5 Overlords

2-3 Overlords being able to get a clear shot at a prime target
2-3 Overlords having to shoot into cover or a mediocre target.


It gets even better as the game wears on, with the Overlords getting easier and easier shots and the ability to sustain, which dramatically boosts their damage output (sustaining does little to help a volcano cannon or plasma blastgun.)

i'm happy to hear counter arguments!

None of this takes into account how the unit operates within its list or other factors such as durability. You could quite easily make a case for Vultures being overpowered if you just look at their shooting stats in isolation.

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 Post subject: Re: Squats back from CanCon (The Overlord Rant)
PostPosted: Mon Feb 01, 2016 9:37 am 
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So from the results it seems lots of Overlords + 13 activations can be very strong indeed.

One solution would be adopt the Epic UK Thunderfires, which at 175 pts cuts down the activation numbers.
From personal experience id recommend it as the unit is solid, harder to break and can be useful in games without aircraft to grab/hold objectives etc. it feels more like a proper unit than an activation booster.

If the problem with Overlords is spamming maybe a cap on numbers might be a better solution to playtest? 0-4 perhaps? Id sound a note of caution either way. Sometimes one tournaments results can be misleading due to match ups, luck, new armies that play differently to what players are used to, etc. here in the UK Squats had their tournament debut and Overlords performed weakly, next time with different opponents they could prove more effective.

So I'd recommend maybe wait for more results before changing things? With Epic UK and NetEA both using the same Overlord stats and similar lists we'll probably have a better idea on their effectiveness over the next few tourneys.

Cheers,
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 Post subject: Re: Squats back from CanCon (The Overlord Rant)
PostPosted: Mon Feb 01, 2016 10:05 am 
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Steve54 wrote:
None of this takes into account how the unit operates within its list or other factors such as durability. You could quite easily make a case for Vultures being overpowered if you just look at their shooting stats in isolation.



That's true. I was only responding to other's pure calculations posts.

Overlords have a problem with fragility - the support craft rule means that they are as easily targeted out of cover as they themselves target others. Ordinary fire doesn't do much but a Shadowsword will pop them fast. They are also vulnerable to assaults and being broken as they lack the fearless rule.

They how ever have amazing synergy with the rest of the Squat list. The list has lots of AP in spades so enemy infantry is generally no problem. The Goliaths can shut down the opposing artillery pretty well due to the 2 blast makers. A big War Engine like a Colossus or Land Train can just sit on the blitz and prevent losing it while the tunnellers can at least make an attempt on the opponent's half of the board.

What the list lacks is good AT fire and mobile AA, something that the Overlords bring in spades.

Also, Vultures ARE a bit on the nose sometimes!


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 Post subject: Re: Squats back from CanCon
PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2016 1:36 pm 
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Steve54 wrote:
Elsaurio wrote:


Second clarification is that Australia does not use some weird line of sight rules. The Cancon tournament used the vanilla line of sight rules out of the main rule book (something that we shorthand refer to as TLOS althought it isn't). A -1 save is applied liberally and you cannot shoot more than 10cm into any cover.
About 90% of our other tournaments and games utilize a more rigorous and abstract terrain rule system (with predetermined 'levels' of cover. While this cover system does provide more cover on average than the rulebook method, it does not really impact upon the performance of the Overlords, who are able to pop up over the cover reasonably well while the shadowswords of the world are worse off.


Australia interprets the rulebook differently to nearly every other community, this has been established. So given the threads detailing how Australias TLOS interpretation works then its absolutely apparent that it would make a big difference in the Overlords case.

I've played with the New England boys in the US (Dave and co) and we basically play the same terrain rules.
I'd say it was the tournament scene in the UK that adopts a more simpler version of the terrain rules which impacts those particular players outlook on this situation.

This isn't going to change, we know.
Best to stick to the rule book version of the terrain rules here so we're all on the same page (NetEA list).

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 Post subject: Re: Squats back from CanCon
PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2016 2:26 pm 
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Onyx wrote:
I've played with the New England boys in the US (Dave and co) and we basically play the same terrain rules.
I'd say it was the tournament scene in the UK that adopts a more simpler version of the terrain rules which impacts those particular players outlook on this situation.

This isn't going to change, we know.
Best to stick to the rule book version of the terrain rules here so we're all on the same page (NetEA list).

That simply isn't true, all the nations who have been at the last 2 European championships have determined it the say way and various US groups have also interpreted the rulebook in the same manner.

The way the vast majority of the world groups play is the same way that the game was tested and developed as some of the members of the UK scene were involved at that stage or were in groups with those involved.
This preceded Epic UK by many years.

The rules that the TLOS Australian faction are ludicrous in a system with no fixed scale and vastly different models being used for the same unit. To present it as the rulebook version is a fallacy too, its merely an interpretation of the rulebook, and one which makes no sense for the game.

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 Post subject: Re: Squats back from CanCon (The Overlord Rant)
PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2016 8:59 pm 
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When Glyn came to New Zealand he noted that we played terrain conventions as in Europe, but Australia didn't for some reason.
Perhaps Australia should get with the international standard on this one if it's an outlier and we are trying to test lists for the same game. Or at least use international standards when testing lists for NetEA?

I'm also confused. What the heck even is this 'TLOS' thing in Australia? I mean the rulebook is pretty clear (1.9.2) in stating that shooting is not permitted more than 10cm through a piece of cover (buildings, rubble, woods, fortifications etc) to units in it, and such terrain also blocks LOS to the other side. And skimmers have to be closer to blocking terrain than the target (2.1.41) So what is the difference? Surely you aren't just porting in the awful TLOS rule from Warhammer or something?

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 Post subject: Re: Squats back from CanCon (The Overlord Rant)
PostPosted: Tue Feb 02, 2016 9:24 pm 
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Markconz wrote:
When Glyn came to New Zealand he noted that we played terrain conventions as in Europe, but Australia didn't for some reason.
Perhaps Australia should get with the international standard on this one if it's an outlier and we are trying to test lists for the same game. Or at least use international standards when testing lists for NetEA?

I'm also confused. What the heck even is this 'TLOS' thing in Australia? I mean the rulebook is pretty clear (1.9.2) in stating that shooting is not permitted more than 10cm through a piece of cover (buildings, rubble, woods, fortifications etc) to units in it, and such terrain also blocks LOS to the other side. And skimmers have to be closer to blocking terrain than the target (2.1.41) So what is the difference? Surely you aren't just porting in the awful TLOS rule from Warhammer or something?



I'm beginning to regret using the term 'TLOS' in any of my posts. The clarify: for this tournament we used the straight terrain rules from he rule book with little modification (so completely blocked if you're 10cm in, skimmers normal etc). The only house rule was that we had some abstraction for identical models of different scale (so all war hounds count the same, no matter the if they were old Tiny GW ones or larger FW ones.

That being said, all other Australian tournaments (and 95% of regular club games) use a house rules abstract method of terrain (i.e., this hill is 'level 2, only war engines with 6DC can see over it).

I cannot comment on how European terrain works (I'm guessing it's more like our second system) but in both our systems I can report that Overlords lord over most of the battlefield (pun intended).


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