The Specialist Arms Forum

Warmaster => Warmaster Revolution => Topic started by: Aldhick on November 12, 2018, 07:38:28 PM

Title: Raise Dead issue
Post by: Aldhick on November 12, 2018, 07:38:28 PM
For those who don't follow the discussion on FB, I'm opening the issue here as well. Also FB is not suitable for this kind of discussions and one loses track quickly there.

After the tournamet the swedish guys came with a "complain" that the Raise Dead grew significantly stronger under WMR combat system. And it is very well true. I must admit, being TK player myself,  I failed to spot that, but now it's quite clear.

It is the obligation you have to direct the attack to the foront which allows the raised unit to avoid being targeted as a easy-to-kill target. Furthermore, now when the supporting units are part of the combat, it gives the TK/VC player wider possibilities to place raised units.

This is a matter of fact, but it may be up to endless discussions, wheter it is unbalancing or not.

Much bigger problem was uncovered at the same time. The spell allowes one to mess quite a bit with the combat system. The problem is following: When a brigade of two lines of infantry is charged to the front (so the rear line is supporting the front one) and the raised unit is created so it only touches the supporting unit, this unit cease to be supporting and therefore is no longer part of the same combat and we end up with two separate combats before a single dice is rolled. This is something totally against the intention of the original spell and it is a serious reason to amend it.

So the proposition so far to solve the problem is the obligation that the raised unit has to touch the friendly unit already engaged in combat.

Once ready the amendment will be presented on WMR web in Q & A section as a trial rule so people can playtest it.
Title: Re: Raise Dead issue
Post by: Dark Omen on November 16, 2018, 09:07:54 AM
As a long time Undead player myself I agree that this is a practical solution. Raised Dead must stay in contact with a friendly unit, even if it is corner to corner contact with one stand already engaged in combat.

It is currently too easy to automatically delete whole stands of supporting units simply by placing Raised Dead behind enemy combat formations, far from the rest of the Undead fighting line. If the Undead player wins the ensuing engagement, forcing the supporting stands to retreat into enemy stands or engaged friends' stands, they are destroyed often without rolling a dice.

I was also thinking maybe Raise Dead could be a 6+ to cast in line with the Summon Fen Beast spell, but in practice that is too harsh for the Undead player.

The usefulness of Raise Dead spell also brings into focus the absolute uselessness of the Hand of Dust spell in the Vampire Counts list. Why would you ever cast Hand of Dust, a 6 attack combat spell on a 6+ when you can Rasie Dead on a 5+ and achieve the same effect plus gain a free unit?

Finally, please could there be some clarity in the rules as to whether Raised Dead units count towards army Break Point or not? I have always played it that they don't, but a sentence similar to that in the Summon Fen Beast spell to absolutely clarify this would be useful.

Many Thanks for your hard work

Title: Re: Raise Dead issue
Post by: empireaddict on November 23, 2018, 08:19:57 PM
I understand from those on FB that the original complaint is that RD is something to which there is no countermeasure. And therefore it is overpowered.  I strongly disagree.

Let's take a similar example from one of the original armies: Dwarf artillery bounces through and is overpowered? Er, no. Any decent player reconfigures their formations into lines rather than columns.

Similar against Undead. But different approach. Yes, they have a powerful technique. And if I use single or double lines they can RD behind me and it gives them an advantage. So I use columns. Perhaps with a single line in front of three columns or four columns side-by-side.  Front stand of unit involved in frontal combat directly or as support. Rear stand fights non-charging skeletons. And even Halberdiers are evens against them. Better infantry have the advantage over them.

Every WM army has something that you have to guard against. TK and VC are no different. Don't (especially) put your cavalry in a long line against them.  It won't end well. Basics.

And where is the evidence base that Undead armies are doing really well in competitive settings? I've not seen it in the tournaments I have run or played in. They are a middling list at best. If they were winning lots of tournaments I'd be saying "OK, maybe needs a re-think". But they're not. And take away RD from behind and they've got very little going for them.

The danger here is that every loud complaint results in a knee jerk change to the rules. Adjust playing techniques before adjusting the rules.

Edit: Ales, forgot to say thank you for cross-posting and for your excellent ongoing work.
Title: Re: Raise Dead issue
Post by: Aldhick on November 26, 2018, 09:14:52 AM
I said it on FB many times  but people seem never to listen or read properly. So let's repeat it here as well. The issue here is not the balance, but the combat mechanism - the possibility to split one combat engagement into two by raising the unit.

In vanilla you were able to get the raised unit into the rear only when you were fighting the enemy brigade that was in single rank formation. If the infantry brigade was in two rank formation with one unit in support position, you couldn't raise a unit to fight them as they were not part of the combat.  And this is exactly what I'm trying to achieve.

The other possible solution is that the raised unit can be raised only so it touches a friendly unit or an enemy unit that is already in contact with another friendly unit. That would bring it even closer to how the spell worked in vanilla, though the wording would be kind of clumsy.
Title: Re: Raise Dead issue
Post by: empireaddict on November 27, 2018, 07:32:53 AM
That situation would only occur when there were two infantry lines. Line with three columns behind or four columns would be one combat as front or middle stands of column would be in support while rear fight the RD.

So, taking this single situation, the TK/VC player has the advantage of getting rid of support for the frontal combat.  Good for them. Their opponent should have deployed in columns when fighting Undead.

And regardless of game mechanics it makes sense tactically; stay in tight formations if enemy units are likely to pop out of the ground behind you.

I've said my piece and won't labour the point any further. Thank you for your work in taking the rules forward.  I just think this is not a problem that needs to be 'fixed' so you are setting a precedent for adjusting rules when actually players need to change their techniques.

Title: Re: Raise Dead issue
Post by: Geep on November 28, 2018, 01:01:19 AM
Although you make a good point about columns, properly managing columns is easier said than done. A charging unit is supposed to get as many stands into contact as possible- see pg 36, Forming a Battle Line. Note even in WMR's rules where the support stand counts as in 'combat', the wording of this rules section is clear about maximising base-to-base contact. This then means that movement against the undead is more difficult, and it will be more common to be charged than to charge.
Title: Re: Raise Dead issue
Post by: cjbennett22 on December 07, 2018, 04:52:27 PM
Thank you for posting this issue here.  It is definitely a lot better than Facebook for keeping a rule discussion  like this going.

ok, I would like to start my opinion with the fact that I have never paid any attention to this spell before as vampire counts are WAY to rare and then no one I know even has the tomb kings.  So this is literally my first time studying the spell text and rules.

As I do that, I see one thing that jumps out at me.  The rules state that it is cast on any 1 single combat engagement, so if you raise dead behind your enemy in 2 lines for revolution......1 supporting the other 3 stands wide....I think its safe to assume it must still be 1 engagement and your hits count as such.  In which case, nothing changes from vanilla to revolution, if you just keep assuming the 4 lines of combat..... enemy, friendly support, friendly, all 1 engagement. 

I will agree, if you split it up into 2 engagements and count hits that way, the spell is really awesome and will win the combat for you almost everytime.  But as 1 engagement with all hits pooling together, I think its still a fair enough fight, the spell is still advantageous but not overly so.

I'm for just giving the spell a slight re-wording to keep the engagement as 1 single engagement, and you must deploy the raised dead unit in a way that keeps it a single engagement as it was at the start of the shooting phase.

But, I might still be missing something because this is my first time reading these rules.
Title: Re: Raise Dead issue
Post by: Geep on December 08, 2018, 08:50:54 AM
That's a really good point CJBennett22- the spell was never supposed to allow the creation of a new combat
Title: Re: Raise Dead issue
Post by: Aldhick on December 09, 2018, 09:13:53 AM
Yes, very good point.
Title: Re: Raise Dead issue
Post by: cjbennett22 on December 12, 2018, 07:09:12 PM
So maybe players will need a new marker of some sort but combats need be resolved together with the raised dead.

Make sure each player knows who is all in with who and total the hits as 1 single combat.  Only for the first round of course.

Add or change wording for the spell to make it clear and I think, in my honest and humble opinion, it's all the same as vanilla Warmaster and not "overpowering".
Title: Re: Raise Dead issue
Post by: empireaddict on December 13, 2018, 07:33:59 PM
That sounds like a great solution. The 'problem' applies in only one situation, so resolve with small sentence in spell text.  Suggest: "If RD unit contacts supporting stands, resolve as a single combat not two separate combats."