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Perhaps the only part of the Chaos codex that everyone agrees on to be 'broken,' the Lash of Submission is without a doubt an incredibly useful psychic power. With it you can make all sorts of things happen for you... got a squad of World Eaters, and need that enemy Devastator squad in charge range? Or howabout a couple squads spread out, and you want your Vindicator to make them all go splat? With the Lash, you can make it happen.
It seems as though it's an easily abused power, but really... is it? Or does it just seem that way, because of its tactical applications and the fact that it is difficult for some certain armies to be able to counter it?
There are counters for it, of course, in many armies. Notably:
Runes of Witnessing (Eldar), Psychic Hood (DH/SM), Shield of Faith/Nullrod (WH), Shadows of the Warp (Tyranids).
But outside of these very limited pieces of wargear and/or powers, can the Lash be effectively countered? I think so. After all... all you really have to do is kill the Sorcerer(s), and in most cases (that I have seen) people will be using them in plain ol' power armour. Also we should keep in mind that the Sorcerer will be 24" away at the extreme most..
I suppose that my question here is... is the Lash of Submission really so broken, so easily abused, that people will have extreme difficult in countering it? Or will people finding themselves across the table from this very useful power be able to effectively counter the usage of the Lash after some thought and tactics?
All I hear is "the Lash is so broken," and indeed it seems as though, but I wanted to get thoughts from everyone else about this.
First call I've seen saying that it isn't broken. The points you mention are very interesting.
Perhaps it's because psychics play such a low key role in today's 40K that it'll catch people with their pants down - so to speak.
But.. a variety of races have many ways of dealing with this problem. It'll just mean that Chaos can be a threat on yet another level.. which makes us more powerful. An enemy player is gonna be annoyed if they take lots of any psychic stuff and we don't take anything .
Thanks Nemesis.. I though Lash was 'off the menu'.. but now I'm reconsidering.
Last edited by Karmoon; August 18th, 2007 at 23:11.
LO RulesOriginally Posted by AnonymousOriginally Posted by Cyric
The lash is undoubtedly a very strong psi power, but here are another two reasons why it's not as broken as some people believe:
1- The utility of the lash comes with a sacrifice, and that is the loss of points for investing in units/upgrades that produce definite kills. The lash can only take you so far, and in the end, players still need enough fire power in order to win the game. This is particularly apparent when players start taking duel lash sorcerers, especially in the 1850 point games (that's nearly 1/6 of your points invested in non-offensive units). This is a natural check against the lash
2- Counter tactics to the lash are already beginning to surface. Most notably, our opponents can simply organize their ranks so as to prevent the lash from being effective on certain squads. For one thing, the lash cannot be used to push/pull an enemy unit through an 'allied' squad that is closely packed together (i.e., allied squads that have less than inch in between their models, are considered as 'impassable', I believe) With this in mind, a Nid player, for instance, could position their second wave directly behind their first wave. This will prevent the lash from being used to push back units comprising the first wave. Conversely, a ranged army can position their heavy hitters behind a line of basic infantry in order to prevent their heavy weapons from being pulled too close to our advancing princes and c.c. units.
Spambot kill tally. . .337
I like the way you approached the subject.
First, let me start by giving everyone a sneak peek at the review I'm currently writing up. This is taken from the 'Lash of Submission' section, and pretty much summarizes my over all thoughts about it -Originally Posted by Caluin
Okay, let's expand on that just a little bit. People state the different ways that Lash can be countered, and it's true - you can indeed counter the Lash through a varied set of options. But people aren't asking the right question. Instead, you should be asking the following -
'Can the power be countered by a balanced, take on all comers list?'
For instance, how many Grey Knight armies do you see that include an Inquisitor Lord just for his Psychic Hood? Or how many Tyranid lists do you see that make it a point to include Shadow in the Warp? The reason is because in a balanced environment, those are wasted points against armies that don't heavily rely upon offensive psychic powers, which includes most armies.
Of course, there are ways for balanced lists to deal with the Lash. Mechanized armies have an easier time with this, since you can't target Vehicles. Heavy terrain is also an option, but harder to pull off since the Lashers will usually have at least a 12 inch movement mode, and blocking LoS to your troops also means giving up line of sight for your guns/powers.
I think the biggest issue with Lash is that it breaks unwritten rule #1 amongst hobbyists - 'Don't touch the opponent's models.' Obviously there are other effects that break this rule as well (Callidus Assassin, for instance), but not on the level that Lash does.
Now, as for 'simply killing the model with the power'... I think that's far easier said than done. You might be able to get away with that if the target is a Daemon Prince, but if it's an IC, then it will most definitely be taking advantage of Independent Character status. A typical situation, as Karmoon can attest to, is to have your Sorcerer hidden behind two squads, Lash a unit nearby, then block any line of sight with a swirling melee of Khornate Berzerker axes and bloody Plague Marine limbs.
So, bottom line, and my current verdict on the power - It does have counters, but many of them are not available to truly balanced lists; the applications for the power are so profound and game altering that many people will balk at it; the power is broken, even with the few short comings.
I think I might be the only dissenting opinion on this one - how strange is that? )
Maybe 'current' balanced armies won't include the most effective counters... but now that Chaos has this power, will balanced armies not start to include counters to the Lash in order to basically remain balanced? It's not as if things like psychic hoods (also able to be given to GK heroes, not just Inquisitors, I believe) will only be used against Chaos... they are useful against Eldar, other Inquisition armies, Space Marine Librarians, the likes. Sure, psychic powers aren't big on the list of threats in the game's current version, but I think the introduction of the Eldar and Chaos powers are changing this.
Besides, paying a few extra points for a psychic hood or something like that won't really unbalance an army list, I wouldn't think. In order to be a "take all comers" list, your list should include elements to be capable of countering every enemy you might face. The Lash is going to be a dominant power in Chaos armies, so it only makes sense to me that people will be designing lists to take on this threat.
A similar example is the fact that most 'balanced' lists are actually set up as anti-MEQ lists. That's not technically 'balanced,' but because 40k is a game of predominantly MEQ armies (Space Marines, Necrons, parts of Eldar, Sisters of Battle, Grey Knights, Chaos, etc.) then the balanced lists have evolved to counter this larger threat. The re-emergence of deathly useful psychic powers into 4th edition may just influence balanced lists to evolve once again.
It's like saying that you have to take Lascannons because you might go up against a Monolith at some point. But that's not true, because Lascannons are useful against anything your opponent fields. If he doesn't field the Monolith, so what? You can still just as easily shoot his Warriors.
Now, we can talk about more and more psychic powers being introduced to all armies, but that's not the present. My analysis is based upon the game as it is today - if the majority of armies started getting both psychic powers that are worth taking and all armies started getting items that helped counter said powers, then obviously the state of the game changes, and so does the analysis.
But consider Tyranids. Shadow in the Warp is only accessible on a Hive Tyrant, and taking it sacrifices their one Psychic Power slot. That's a loss of Warp Field on a Flying Tyrant, or loss of Warp Blast, Psychic Scream, or Catalyst on a Walking Tyrant.
Space Marines have it even worse, since they have to take an expensive Librarian now. By stating that 'take all comers' lists should prepare for everything, you're basically saying that all Space Marines lists should always include a Librarian as their first HQ choice. That's pretty limiting to the army composition, since many armies dislike including dual HQ choices, and anything that limits your army composition is unbalanced.
Caluin, couple of questions:
1- I'm not sure the lash can target I.C in the above scenario that your outlined. It sounds like a stretch of the rules to maintain that 'picking a non-vehicle target' is not the same things as 'targeting' and I.C. Could you elaborate a little on this point?
2- The lash states that you can move an enemy unit X" in your desired direction, but it does not say whether you also get to decide how the enemy squad formation is repositioned. It seems to me that squad would maintain its same basic formation, but would simply be moved in the given direction (assuming nothing is in the way).
Speaking of Tyranids, I recently played my first and only game using 4th edition rules, and it was against a well balanced Nid build. I found the lash to be exceptionally effective against delaying the small bug charge, which wasn't able to reach my line until round 4 (usually, this particular Nid player is in my face by round 2, sometimes 3). At any rate, I was using duel lashes, and considering that the lash also works against monstrous creatures, I pretty much repelled the closest enemy units every round.
That said, once his 3 zoenthropes had advanced upon my side of the table, I had an increasingly difficult time passing my psi tests, as they were upgraded with psychic scream. The three zoe's reduced my sorcerers' leadership to 7, then, coupled with an advancing tryant, which also had this upgrade, my sorcerers' leadership was now 6. Of course, I rolled above 6 for my sorcerers' leadership, and hence, neither were able to use the lash.
This seems like an effective way of shutting down the lash, but there again, I had 3 solid rounds of using the lash, which was a serious problem for the Nid player. In fact, those 3 rounds would have shifted the game in my favor, if it weren't for a few other circumstances, which inevitably resulted in a loss for me. Even if the lash isn't broken, it's a super powerful ability.
Spambot kill tally. . .337
My views of the usage of the Lash is based on just how I interpreted the passage. The first question should be easy to answer - the second far harder.
Of course, once they join a unit, then they can't be singled out. I suppose you could make a case for still picking him and moving him, but he'd bring the rest of his unit right along with him, so it effectively accomplishes nothing.
Of course, that's just time consuming and beyond most players.
So instead, we just say this - Fleet gives you a set amount of movement based on a die roll as well, right? So why is it that we allow them to take only a portion of that die, if they wish, but say that the Lash must move their full distance?
Irritating? Highly. But so is saying that I can't move four inches on my Fleet roll if I rolled a 6. )
Also, I just realized that Fleet doesn't limit you to a single direction, so you could make the same case for Fleet as with Lash.