Friday, July 16, 2010

FAQ me? FAQ you!

I'm still working my way through the new 8th edition rulebook. Already, Games Workshop has put out a revision to their FAQ's. I see this as a good thing. Does it mean that the book was poorly or vaguely written? I don't think so, at least not more so than usual. There will always be questions that come up, and the best thing that they can do it address them quickly instead of just leaving them out there for players to argue over. Many of us still have a bad taste in our mouth from disagreements over how War of the Ring was supposed to work and haven't touched the game since. A timely FAQ could have avoided much of that.

The Dark Elf FAQ update was sparse. Only one of the few changes they made has me scratching my head. The Manbane + Rending Stars combo may have been over powered. It may have been cheesy considering that the Assassin was BS 9 and didn't take up a hero slot. But it was one of the few sources of high strength attacks in the army, has a short range, Assassins are fragile, and everyone expected to see the combo if you had a unit of Shades and an Assassin so they could keep their monsters away from him.

Seeing a change to the ruling doesn't surprise me. Changing the rule so that the extra +1 to Strength is up to the current player seems like a poor choice. Mental muscle memory in Warhammer is a hard thing to fight. Games go much faster once you get used to what you have to consistently roll. Having a stat that will flip back and forth based on who's turn it is is just asking for confusion. Plus, I'm having trouble coming up with a fluff justification for why a poison's strength would oscillate from one player's turn to the next. The only time it will come up, that I can think of, is if the Assassin makes a Stand and Shoot reaction to a charge. If the combo needed to be fixed, why fix it like this?


  1. Your description of it had me scratching my head, too, but then I skimmed the army book and the FAQ, and it makes perfect (if inconvenient) sense.

    Note the wording of the FAQ: "...which ability happens first..."

    It's a matter of timing: which ability triggers first?

    There's a sidebar in the General Principles section, pg 10:


    "Whilst every effort has been made to make sure that the sequencing of rules is utterly clear, occasionally you'll find that two or more rules are to be resolved at the same time - normally 'at the start of the Movement phase' or similar. When this happens, and the wording is not explicit as to which rule is resolved first, then the player whose turn it is chooses the order."

    (emphasis mine)

    So, two effects (Manbane, Rending Stars) happen at the same time: the active player decides.

    The FAQ's answer is the only approach that fits the way the rules work, now.

    And besides, you're right: it shouldn't come up very often. But, when it does, the core rulebook addresses it. The FAQ just makes it clear.

  2. *blink*


    Ok, that at least makes sense as the reason why they would need to FAQ it.

    It also suggests a that someone over there thought through things fairly thoroughly to note that sort of subtle change.

    I find this encouraging.

  3. It's shocking, really.

    Unfortunately, any warm fuzzies I might feel because of this consistency are counteracted by the High Elves' Speed of Asuryan rule. I mean, they fixed the interaction between ASF & ASL in the core book because of this shit... and then back it out with the FAQ.