Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Comment turned post

tl;dr - CSM 3rd Edition had a lot more fluff and options that I think should be encouraged and spread to other armies, as opposed to being obliterated as it was by their 4th Edition "update".

 (In response to Pete's Firewasp's comment in this post, I got a little preachy.)

I guess I didn't include Black Templars or Dark Angels. I only included Space Wolves because they have their own section outside of the Space Marine section on the website, and I imagine Blood Angels will too shortly.

CSM did get a fairly recent update, but that's a touchy subject with me atm. I like Nurgle. I like the fluff, especially the irony of it, and I like the toughness of the units. I like a lot about it.

When I bought my Tau, my roommate wanted me to go CSM instead. I got bored the other day and started to check out the CSM codex. It seemed kind of cool. Then I read some more about Death Guard. I was liking the challenge of creating an effective, fluffy nurgle army that didn't have a bunch of identical units.

I decided to look around online to see what others had found. What I discovered was a LOT of rage. This led me to find a copy of the 3rd edition CSM book. This led me to rage.

The Tyranid and Tau 4th Edition books are sort of sparce. They're thin books, lacking variety you find in the 5th edition books. It's hard to customize a Tau army in a functional way that is also effective. These new Tyranids...I can see 5 different unique, flavorful, effective armies easily. Same with Space Marines, Space Wolves, and Orks.

The 3rd Edition CSM book is awesome. Options all over the place. I think every army should have some version of Veteran Skills (Essentially any character or individual unit can be given things like Furious Charge, Counter Attack, etc. for a points cost) and that it should be extended to stat line modifiers as well (+1S, +1WS, etc.), but that's a whole different story. You could dedicate anything and everything, but everything had a drawback too that matched what it gained. Nurgle Fast Attack was limited to 0-1 Bikers and could only have 2 dedicated Rhinos as Troops, then they became Fast Attack.

This is all coming from a builder. My favorite aspect of the game is designing an army. I like themes and cohesive ideas that bind it all together. If there were more drones or more stealth units, I'd give up every Railgun and spend days finding a way to make it work. If I can't find a good story in my head, I loose interest VERY QUICKLY.

The 3rd Edition CSM codex is exactly what I've always thought every other codex should be like. Fluffy army related options with generic options that can be put together and too many ways for me to exhaust that would let me really make an army my own. My problem is really that they utterly destroyed that beautiful thing with an "update" that hunched the guts out and made what remained a little cheaper in points.

 I'm just going to cut myself off  and step down from my soap box here because it's almost 7pm and I'm still sitting in my office >.<


  1. I know what you mean about more out of date codices. It's one thing that's got me excited to play the skirmish/gang roleplaying game Nuclear Renaissance ( that I'll be ordering soon.

    It seems positive for future codices though as the newer ones have opened up a lot of choices for viable army types. Hopefully when the older ones are updated to 5th edition they will be (like the nids) filled out with the choices and options that really let armies break out and do different things.

    PS: It wasn't me on the other post, just somebody with the same avatar picture ;-)

  2. Haha! I can't believe I've associated that picture with you that quickly. Kind of funny.

    Looking across the line at the 5th edition codecies really does give me a bit of hope for the future. I have a lot of issues with Games Workshop as a company, but I really do like their games.

    I've considered other miniature systems a few times. Ramshackle Games intrigues me just because of the spider tank. I saw it about 1 or 2 days before OSH posted a link to your blog, which made me chuckle a little. I also like the idea of a smaller, more character-ful force as opposed to the larger army.

    I really like Warhammer Fantasy for it's characters and the unique styles of and within each army. I like 40k lore and the rules, but the armies have been disappointing me, failing to hold my interest. I think that's why I was so drawn to Daemons. Skulltaker is, without exception, my favorite character. Awesome model, awesome backstory, awesome rules, and they all fit together.

    I need to play some against this new Tyranid codex. My first impression was something akin to "Holy crap! If they do this to Tau the Fire Warriors are going to get Plasma Rifles!" Which is obviously an exageration, but it's all very exciting.

    That is one really cool thing about a roommate that plays; when his armies get updated, it's almost like mine did :)

  3. I agree with the new codexes having a better direction. I think the real problem is that GW is very slow at updating things and so you end up with game imbalance jsut because of the different rulesets that things were written for. Even a small update with no new models would be fine if it brought wargear and rules in line with the new edition.

    I can honestly reccomend the spider tank as being awesomely cool and fun. I'll let you know how the new rules for Nuclear Renaissance turn out when I get to order a copy. I've already started planning out a one gang. A prime character is a female gunslinger who shoots like crazy, can't fight up close, but is both a femme fatale (enemy has a chance to lose all their attacks while leering at her sexiness) and is also a tart (strikes last against a male character because 'you have to try your luck don't you?')

    I really like the Chaos Daaemons codex for its fantastic background and richness though, like you say, the armies in the game don't always work out as well.

    I think the Nid codex is sending some waves through the community but it will probably just mean a shift in playstyles, not better or worse, just different. Then again, Bell of Lost Souls has been suggesting that the 'obvious' choices in the codex are maybe not as overpowered as people first thought and that it is balanced, with multiple ways to do well.

  4. 3rd edition chaos codex was good, yes, but it was also really complicated to use. There was simply too many options that beginning players were at a loss. The codex was also open to wild abuse. Because there were so many option and lots of restrictions, it was easy to miss something and get it wrong. There were also armies like the fleet, infiltrating, chaos lord daemon bomb that were just abusive.

    I think the direction of current codices is spot on. They each seem to come with enough options so that there is a variety of army builds, without making it too complicated for beginners.

    The Tau codex lacks some of the simplicity of the newer ones, but it's still a competitive army.

  5. I think the chaos codex in third edition was a little like the second edition ones, loads of background and fluff. But with all the useful, game related information scattered everywhere. As OSH stated, it was wide open to abuse. I think the latest codex was an effort to streamline the army selection process it probably went a little over the top.

    Anyway, sorry to keep you at work till 7pm. I'll change my profile pic to remove any future confusion.



  6. Rofl, it wasn't your fault. I tend to end up at work late almost every day.

    A little programming for you guys: Code is basically raw text until it's compiled into something the computer can read. If you have multiple files, the linker has to link them together after compilation so everyone knows what they're supposed to about everyone else.

    Compiling + Linking is called building. Rebuiling my project at work takes ~30minutes. So when it's close to the end of the day but I'm on a roll, I end up having to wait on down time like that (which is normally when I'm posting and what not.)