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Thread: Digital Weapons

  1. #1
    Tyranid Warrior Fanatic Phalanx's Avatar
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    146 (x7)

    Digital Weapons

    After arguing with someone about tyranid special CCWs (and how they no longer have a rule about using more than one special CCW at once) digital weapons were brought up.

    Digital weapons are used in close combat to allow you to re-roll to wound once per turn. However, they are also classified as a weapon in the Space Marine codex. While the intent is obviously for it to be combined with other weapons, the RAW would mean that you can't use it with a relic blade or anything else as it would count as a special CCW. The wording for it is the exact same as the wording for power weapons in the BRB so RAW-wise you couldn't use any other special CCW with it.

    What do the rules gurus and rules lawyers here thing? If we ignore the existence of RAI, would you say that digital weapons cannot be used with a relic blade or a lightning claw? If if you argue that they can be used together, then does this mean that power weapons, which use essentially the same language, can be used with witch blades and the like?

    Note: This is purely for discussion. While I believe according to the RAW digital weapons would be a special CCW, its pretty obvious that it wasn't intended that way and I would allow my opponents to use it according to RAI rather than hold them to RAW.

    Disclaimer: I will be playing devils advocate and arguing strict RAW without any sort of RAI if anyone disagrees with this. I want to see if anyone can prove this only RAW no-RAI idea wrong without requiring RAI. If I end up seeming like a jerk, its because I'm getting too far into the whole devil's advocate thing and I will pre-emptively apologize for any of that.

    Last edited by Phalanx; January 12th, 2010 at 07:26.
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  3. #2
    Son of LO psichotykwyrm's Avatar
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    443 (x8)

    Its always been my understanding that Digital Weapons are an upgrade, much like Hellfire Rounds. They do not take the place of one of the model's weapons, only augment them.
    "It takes a vast amount of self control to be this dangerous."
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    Tyranid Warrior Fanatic Phalanx's Avatar
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    146 (x7)

    Ah, but unlike master-crafted weapons it doesn't explicitly say that. Even their description makes them out to be hidden weapons rather than an augmentation. Hellfire rounds are also listed under "Other Equipment" while digital weapons are listed under "weapons". As they give an effect that can only be used in CC, wouldn't that make them special close combat weapons going by a strict RAW no-RAI viewpoint?
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  5. #4
    Son of LO psichotykwyrm's Avatar
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    443 (x8)

    Also consider that just about everywhere else, such an entry would start with "The XXXX is a close combat weapon..." or "XXXX is treated as a close combat weapon that...". I don't recall that in the Digital Weapons entry. (Don't have my book on hand though.)
    "It takes a vast amount of self control to be this dangerous."
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  6. #5
    Son of LO ze_poodle's Avatar
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    Digital weapons don't make any sense. You have a hidden laser weapon...so you re-roll to wound when you hit people with your sword? What? Shouldn't it give you a hidden laser weapon instead? And they're overpriced.

    But anyway. Without the Armoury, the whole concept of "weapons upgrades" no longer exists RAW, so this applies to master-crafted weapons as well. They should be in the "other equipment" section alongside hellfire rounds. That said, let's look at the rule in the Weapons section of the SM rulebook.

    Quote Originally Posted by SM codex
    A model armed with digital weapons may re-roll a single failed roll to wound in each Assault phase.
    Nowhere is it said that the model actually uses the digital weapon as a special close combat weapon. He is simply equipped with it, and as a consequence gains its effect. What's the other important part about this section of the SM codex? It includes ranged weapons, not just close combat weapons. The dispute here is that a model cannot combine two special close combat weapons to gain both their special effects, but there's nothng saying that the digital weapon is a special close combat weapon. In fact, the relevant section of the main rulebook is headlined "Close Combat Weapons." The only reason we think of it digital weapons as weapons at all is because they're in a section headed "Weapons", a section which includes ranged weapons such as lascannons and other items such as melta bombs - none of which are close combat weapons.

    Where does it say that the digital lasers are a special close combat weapon? Where does it say that they're close combat weapons at all? It doesn't, and they're not. They are described as items which give a special benefit when equipped but not - as is the case with special close combat weapons - as a consequence of being used. RAW, the model isn't even using his digital laser when he gets the re-roll. He just gets a re-roll.

    With witchblades and power weapons, the distinction is clear. They're both in the section headed "Special Close Combat Weapons" and can't be thought of as anything else, so their effects explicitly can't be combined. But there's no part of the SM codex categorising digital weapons as special close combat weapons. The entry for power weapons and fists and so on directly refer to the aforementioned section of the main rulebook, and the entry for relic blades states "A relic blade counts as a power weapon whose hits are resolved at Strength 6," which refers to the same thing. All the special weapons in the codex do that, but digital weapons and master-crafted weapons don't. Why? They're not special close combat weapons, they're just weapons which grant a re-roll in close combat. So we can freely combine their effects.
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  7. #6
    Son of LO psichotykwyrm's Avatar
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    443 (x8)

    Quote Originally Posted by ze_poodle View Post
    Nowhere is it said that the model actually uses the digital weapon as a special close combat weapon. He is simply equipped with it, and as a consequence gains its effect.
    Retrieved my book, was prepared to bring forth exactly this information. Seems Mr.Poodle beat me to it.
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    Tyranid Warrior Fanatic Phalanx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ze_poodle View Post
    Digital weapons don't make any sense. You have a hidden laser weapon...so you re-roll to wound when you hit people with your sword? What? Shouldn't it give you a hidden laser weapon instead? And they're overpriced.

    But anyway. Without the Armoury, the whole concept of "weapons upgrades" no longer exists RAW, so this applies to master-crafted weapons as well. They should be in the "other equipment" section alongside hellfire rounds. That said, let's look at the rule in the Weapons section of the SM rulebook.
    True enough, but master-crafted weapons are generally mentioned as things such as a "master-crafted thunderhammer" which implies they are a quality upgrade while it doesn't do that with digital weapons.


    Nowhere is it said that the model actually uses the digital weapon as a special close combat weapon. He is simply equipped with it, and as a consequence gains its effect. What's the other important part about this section of the SM codex? It includes ranged weapons, not just close combat weapons. The dispute here is that a model cannot combine two special close combat weapons to gain both their special effects, but there's nothng saying that the digital weapon is a special close combat weapon. In fact, the relevant section of the main rulebook is headlined "Close Combat Weapons." The only reason we think of it digital weapons as weapons at all is because they're in a section headed "Weapons", a section which includes ranged weapons such as lascannons and other items such as melta bombs - none of which are close combat weapons.
    Digital weapons don't have a ranged profile which means they cannot be ranged weapons, which means they have to be close combat weapons as there are only two types of weapon. There is no special "neither close combat nor ranged" weapons. The fact that it also says its effects are applied in close combat also show that it is a close combat weapon.

    As for meltabombs, they count as a type of grenade IIRC which is a different kind of weapon (that digital weapons isn't a part of) and according to the rulebook a lascannon would technically be a two-handed normal CCW in close-combat.

    Where does it say that the digital lasers are a special close combat weapon? Where does it say that they're close combat weapons at all? It doesn't, and they're not. They are described as items which give a special benefit when equipped but not - as is the case with special close combat weapons - as a consequence of being used. RAW, the model isn't even using his digital laser when he gets the re-roll. He just gets a re-roll.

    With witchblades and power weapons, the distinction is clear. They're both in the section headed "Special Close Combat Weapons" and can't be thought of as anything else, so their effects explicitly can't be combined. But there's no part of the SM codex categorising digital weapons as special close combat weapons. The entry for power weapons and fists and so on directly refer to the aforementioned section of the main rulebook, and the entry for relic blades states "A relic blade counts as a power weapon whose hits are resolved at Strength 6," which refers to the same thing. All the special weapons in the codex do that, but digital weapons and master-crafted weapons don't. Why? They're not special close combat weapons, they're just weapons which grant a re-roll in close combat. So we can freely combine their effects.
    Master-crafted is different from digital weapons as it can be applied as a quality, just like several other kinds of special close combat weapons (poisoned close combat weapons, rending close combat weapons). You can get a master-crafted power sword, but you can't get a digital power sword, right?

    The fact that digital weapons are in the weapons section means that they are a weapon. In 40K IIRC we have 3 categories for weapons: grenades (krak, assault, defensive, meltabombs), ranged weapons (generally count as a two-handed CCW in close combat unless they are a pistol, have a ranged profile), and close combat weapons (can be either a normal close combat weapon or a special close combat weapon). Digital weapons aren't part of the first two so they must be part of the third category, right? As they provide a bonus they would have to be special CCWs rather than normal CCWs.
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  9. #8
    Son of LO psichotykwyrm's Avatar
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    443 (x8)

    Even if it were in fact a weapon, its rules do not proscribe its use to obtain the benefit. Only that it be equipped.

    I'm pretty sure all the Special Close Combat Weapons have details such as "Models using XXXX..." and "When used in close combat...".
    "It takes a vast amount of self control to be this dangerous."
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  10. #9
    Tyranid Warrior Fanatic Phalanx's Avatar
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    146 (x7)

    Quote Originally Posted by psichotykwyrm View Post
    Even if it were in fact a weapon, its rules do not proscribe its use to obtain the benefit. Only that it be equipped.

    I'm pretty sure all the Special Close Combat Weapons have details such as "Models using XXXX..." and "When used in close combat...".
    Power weapons specify that you only need to be armed with them (aka: equipped), not that you must choose to use them. Going by RAW you could keep a power weapon in its sheath and still ignore armour saves in CC as you would still be armed with it.
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  11. #10
    UnderWater Ninja-Tiger .. Xpyre35's Avatar
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    I'm still not understanding the basis of the discussion. The following I feel is an incorrect assumption/statement.

    The wording for it is the exact same as the wording for power weapons in the BRB so RAW-wise you couldn't use any other special CCW with it.
    Digital Weapons wording in the SM:Codex does not indicate in anyway that it is "a special CCW". Nor does it ever ignore armor saves like power weapons. I'm not seeing the comparison.

    The fact that digital weapons are in the weapons section means that they are a weapon. In 40K IIRC we have 3 categories for weapons: grenades (krak, assault, defensive, meltabombs), ranged weapons (generally count as a two-handed CCW in close combat unless they are a pistol, have a ranged profile), and close combat weapons (can be either a normal close combat weapon or a special close combat weapon). Digital weapons aren't part of the first two so they must be part of the third category, right? As they provide a bonus they would have to be special CCWs rather than normal CCWs.
    The above feels like assumptions/conclusions that are debatable.

    Not all weapons in the Space Marine Arsenal are in the weapons section. ie Flamestorm Cannon (Redeemer). All the weapons used by the named characters. The page you are referring to is a reference page. Same can be said about the weapons illustration on page 101.

    Additionally both the Servo Arm and Servo Harness are listed in Other Equipment however are most definitely weapons. This is an additional weapon in the assault phase with special properties which yet its not listed in the weapons section.

    Digital Weapons are 'weapons' in name only. Its an item that grants an ability during the assault phase. The rules for in description state they take advantage of a opening or weakness during a main attack.

    The "rule" states:
    A model armed with digital weapons can re-roll a single failed roll to wound in each Assault phase
    This requires a hit to have occurred, in order to make a wound roll. If one of those wounds fail, from your primary weapon, then you can re-roll 1 of them per assault phase. As you cannot arm a model with just "digital weapons" and nothing else. There is no way to "hit" with digital weapons.

    Also of note in 5th edition, there are no splitting of attacks anymore. All attacks are made with the same weapon. In the case of a power sword wielding Captain with a bolt pistol and digital weapons equipped. The Captain will be swinging with his power sword, all attacks would negate an armor save (even though the bolt pistol grants the additional attack), and he may re-roll one of the 'wound' rolls due to the digital weapons accessory.

    The Captain is not free to choose to swing with the "digital weapons" as its not really a 'special close combat weapon'. There are just no rules to allow it.
    Last edited by Xpyre35; January 12th, 2010 at 19:34.

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