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Kinda new to WHFB, if I am casting a spell such as Pit of Shades and the target doesn't have an initiative, like a war machine, what happens? Any help would be greatly appreciated, thanks.
Welcome to the boards!
What would happen is said pieces would die instantly, due to auto-failing their tests. I'll dig up references later.
Hope this helps.
Rulebook page 5, under Characteristic Tests: "If a model has to take a test for a characteristic that has a value of 0 on it's profile, it will automatically fail the test." Some people may disagree, but I would extend that logic to models with a value of '-' on the profile for the characteristic.
Bear in mind that some particular units have their own special rules here - the Empire Steam Tank, for example, specifically says that it passes all characteristic tests automatically except for Initiative ones which it fails. So it may be worth looking at the special rules for the model in your case to see if it's covered.
I just realised my example of the Steam Tank was a particularly crap example, since a Steam Tank ignores all spell effects except those with a given strength, so it would ignore the Pit of Shades entirely. Oh well. You get my point though.