Welcome to Librarium Online!
Join our community of 80,000+ members and take part in the number one resource for Warhammer and Warhammer 40K discussion!
Registering gives you full access to take part in discussions, upload pictures, contact other members and search everything!
Yes, ladies, gentlemen, children of all ages..er....you get the idea--it's time ago for another Codex Revisions. The time when everyone here gets a chance to speak their mind about the current incarnation of the Imperial Guard. What works and what doesn't, modifications to be made to existing units, and ideas for new ones altogether. As the title tipped you off, this installment tackles the HQ, more specifically HQ selections (so this would not be the correct venue to complain about Infantry Platoons requiring command sections, or similar sillyness ).
The HQ, you might comment, why bother? Afterall, the Guard only have one compulsory choice, the Command Platoon. And correct you would be, despite the many different ways of filling out those support squads, the Command Platoon is the one and only HQ choice allowed in Guard armies. And that's just wrong, if you ask me. How many other armies are denied by the rules, the ability to make use of one of their slots on the Force Organization chart? None. Just Guard, when it comes to our HQ's. The Command Platoon might fulfill its intended role nicely, but wouldn't it be nice to have a little variety? Wouldn't it be nice to actually be able to make use of that empty HQ slot in higher points games? It might just be. Every other army in the game has 2-3 different HQ choices (most of them with accompanying bodyguards as well, some even having options on what type of bodyguard), the lone exception being the Necrons. However, with A.) Necron armies utilizing two Necron Lords to the extreme and B.) Limited unit selections being one of the few weaknesses in the Necron list,
Now if you bothered reading through that long and boring paragraph, you've probably seen my point that it seems the Imperial Guard have a uniquely odd situation when it comes to their HQ choices. A situation I'm hoping we can rectify through some creative efforts and critical thinking. Everyone with me?....Anyone who isn't, feel free to direct yourself to the nearest Inquisitor to have your heresy purged expeditiously.
Moving forward, in "Codex Revisions" tradition, I'll give you guys my idea on the subject and then turn the floor over for feedback on those ideas and any new ones you folks might have. Here goes:
The Advisors Rule:
I have to repress a shudder just bringing it up, because both the rule and the current incarnation of most advisors have made them so horrifically bad. When was the last time you saw an army with Sanctioned Psykers or Priests in them, and didn't have to stiffle a laugh? Commissars are considered to have been beaten over the head with a nerf bat, and are only really good for upgrading the leadership of your HSO, and making our eyes and ears bleed when we have to debate on what does and does not pass through vox-casters or along the leadership special rule.
Anyway, the problem with the basic Advisors rule is that advisors have to filter down the ranks through the Command Platoon, any Platoon HQ's, and so on until they get to the grunts where they might do some good. Which unless you have very few applicable units or entirely too many points, usually ends up being a few shades from never.
So, my rough idea is that advisors are treated kinda like character upgrades (similar to the Veteran Sergeant) for certain units. One must be purchased for the Command Platoon Command Squad before any others can be used in the army, but after that one required, any Platoon HQ squads, Infantry squads, Armored Fist squads, or Storm Trooper squads can add an advisor. The Independant <insert particular advisor here> doctrine would give that option for an advisor to be added to all other units in the list. And a limit of one advisor per unit, except for in the Command Platoon.
A little crazy, maybe, but I think we'd see some more advisors around. And it doesn't really make sense that for example priests would be present in every command group and unit before actually filtering down to the basic guardsmen who actually need his inspiration. Just a thought, make of it what you will.
Sanctioned Psykers--These guys are just so impressively bad that I'm hard-pressed to come up with many ideas to fix them. Best I could think of would be to replace their entry with the Master Astropath from the Imperial Guard High Command Headquarters Group entry in White Dwarf, and perhaps allow for a random psychic power to be added onto that for say +5 points. Then regardless of which power you do or don't get, you can still use your psyker to nullify enemy psychic powers, which is how I realistically envision psykers being primarily employed by the Guard on the battlefield. Small change, but might increase his usefulness, maybe?
Commissars & Priests--I'm leaving these guys pretty much as is, because I think their high cost can be offset by their usefulness in select units when the proposed advisor rule is used. Having a massive Conscript platoon re-rolling their to-hit dice because a Priest joined them seems like a pretty good value to me for 40 points, even though they're likely to break and run if they lose. The one thing I won't go for is upping the Commissar to 3 wounds and 3 attacks like the day of yore. Seems excessive for a normal human and best left to a Heroic Senior Officer, not a guy the Guard can select up to 5 of.
Special Weapons Support Squad--Just my own personal kick, but I think giving these squads the option of having either one demolition charge or a heavy flamer in the unit for +10 points would be fun, and help integrate the concept of Deathworld Veterans into the list alright, without breaking the bank, rules balance, or fluff. Something you guys might try out?
Imperial Guard High Command Headquarters Group--The High Commander and retinue entry presented in White Dwarf 306 for use in the Cadian campaign. I think it silly to create a unit the Guard could actually use and then restrict it only to use within that campaign, especially if the rules have been playtested and balanced.
Only slight tweaks I'd make to it right now are to allow Grenadier Bodyguards access to the four special weapons permitted to the squad (not sure if they can take them right now or not) and to allow them to be upgraded to Veterans (+1 attack, access to the armory, and ability to be upgraded to a Standard Bearer or Medic) at +6 points, because a pure Grenadier retinue for a High Commander just appeals to me and seems very appropriate that such a high ranking figure would be escorted by only the very best the Imperium has to offer.
Command Tank/Vehicle--This is the last idea I've been kicking around, and the only one for a completely new Guard unit. Basically I think we need a way to fill that second HQ choice and the idea that some Guard commander wouldn't order his forces around from inside an armored vehicle seems silly. Basically the entry would be something like either a Chimera or Salamander with the Improved Comms upgrade, and a bonus special rule like allowing one squad per turn with a vox-caster to re-roll a failed leadership roll. This would help offset the bonus to leadership you sacrifice by taking a commander in a vehicle without a leadership value. He'd function kinda like a re-usable trademark item for any unit with a vox-caster (in addition to being a normal tank and all). Its rough, but hopefully you can get the idea.
Anyway, that about covers it on my end. I feel like the Guard HQ just needs to be expanded a little bit, not completely renovated or tweaked to oblivion. It seems like this is one of the smaller problem areas, as opposed to the Elites or Weapons sections I've run previously, but that's just my take. Lets here what you guys have to say about it.
One thing that we definitely need is clear cut, non contradictory rules about what can and cannot be transferred down a vox. We should be able to pick up our shiny new 4th ed. codex, flick to the hq section and know exactly what we can do instead of having to check the 'dex, read one thing, check the F.A.Q to read another then end up duking it out over forums or over the table to no end/ till someone dies of multiple stab wounds from a rather sharp colonel.
Someone on this forum also sugested a speacialist fire support squad or something like that which gives you the option to use multi-meltas and plasma cannons. That might be feasible. And maybe the option of giving grenadier bodyguards instead of guardsmen to HSO's.
One more thing, the idea of using a doctrine to make advisors a squad upgrade seems a bit excessive as then you need to spend almost half of your doctrine points to use them effectively, if you can call psykers effective.
They shall be my Imperial Guard and they shall know some fear...
I always use two HQs in a leadership plus mode so I can split my forces if I need to; at the moment it tends to be Junior Officer, Vet with Standard, Autogun team and a Meltagun (just as a little incentive not to get too close). I tend to find that one of these units on each flank provides a good firebase (Autocannons), a nice leadership bubble (Standards, don't HSO me on this one - it's an army on a budget), and an minor anti-deepstrike role (then again with BS 3 I know it's not great).
Anyway I suppose another use for that extra HQ slot is just to tool up the guardsmen as SW Squads (I mean it is quite a bit cheaper, JO + Plasmapistol, 3x Guardsmen with Plasmaguns + 1x Medic) is at least appealing, especially since you can mount them in a Chimera.
I know it's nothing particularly cool but I think one of the big advantages of IG is avoiding the clear lynch pin. Nothing exceptional, nothing begging to be targeted but sneakily deadly all the same.
You misunderstand. The rule I was suggesting would make advisors a normal character upgrade for Command Squads, Infantry Squads, Armored Fist squads, and Storm Trooper squads. The only time you'd have to spend a doctrine point would be for Independant Commissars, which would have the effect of adding Commissars as a character upgrade for any other units in the army (ie Conscripts, Hardened Veterans, Ogryns, etc). Then you could likewise have an Independant Priests doctrine to do the same thing, and so on. Get it?One more thing, the idea of using a doctrine to make advisors a squad upgrade seems a bit excessive as then you need to spend almost half of your doctrine points to use them effectively, if you can call psykers effective.
HQ squad- Obviously, they aren't going to change much here and they don't really need to, but I would like to see two things:
1. Clarify all the problems with vox casters.
2. Make the Junior Officer and the veterans in command squads have BS4. It just makes sense to me. I don't get why the veterans who are in less important squads are better than the ones who they choose to accompany the officer... and I don't think there should be any points increase. I mean you already have to pay to upgrade them to vets +6pts, whereas the regular veterans get BS4 at +2 points.
Commissars- Well, as I have stated before, I think there should be a points reduction for commissars, perhaps to 30-35 points. They give your officer +1 leadership, and kill your most expensive trooper if he fails. I know, people always say "but it's hard to fail a Ld. 10 test"- to that I say, not really. You can have minuses to your leadership from any number of things. And I've had a commissar kill a three wound HSO with a power weapon and plasma pistol right before my turn when I would have assaulted the remnants of a marine tactical squad. It can hurt. For 40 pts. unequipped, it's just not enough punch. Look at what a Chaos Space Marine army can get for about 40 points- a lieutenant. A chaos lieutenant would whip a commissar any day, he is an HQ choice with sweet leadership, and he doesn't kill your general.
Priests- Taking a priest in any IG army is pretty ridiculous, and I don't know if I would take them even if they were much cheaper- I don't really care what they do with them.
Psykers- Too erratic to be really useful, but they are plenty cheap already.
I think the advisors rule is fine, even though it's annoying to put an advisor in all your command squads first, I can see how it makes sense.
I like the idea of a character upgrade in a squad, but it seems kinda odd. I don't think I like the idea of upgrading a Veteran Sgt. to a Commisar or Priest. Seems strange that either would really be leading a squad frequently, as opposed to accompanying them. I think I would rather see it be an attachment option, similar to the Warlocks from the Eldar Codex. For an extra so many points, you can attach a Commisar to the squad.
As far as Sanctioned Psykers go, there are many things wrong. My first problem(and biggest) are their powers. The powers themselves aren't bad, considering how cheap the models are. I think that we should at least be able to pick their power. Perhaps we just get to pick one off of the list. I would even pay more points for them at that point! I don't think 20 points would be unreasonable. Also, I think that WS and BS of 2 is just plain ridiculous.
Emperor have mercy on those who stand against me, for I shall not.
I'm not a big proponent of the advisors rule because disseminating such characters from the top down is like saying that your infantry squads only get a lascannon if the platoon command squad has one too. It makes sense to me that special individuals will be assigned to where they're needed, not just tacked on in a top-to-bottom fashion.
And once again I'm shooting myself in the foot by not clarifying. My proposal on advisors is to make an advisor like a character option. IE, for X number of points the squad can purchase a <advisor> who will accompany the squad. I gues it wasn't the best stand alone example since the Veteran Sergeant upgrades the existing sergeant rather than adding onto, so I apologize. Advisors are additions to a squad, they wouldn't replace the Sergeant or any other member of the squad.
I for one pretty much like everything about the IG HQ. Aside from being a little lukewarm on ratlings, ogryns, and rough riders, I like pretty much everything about the Codex. But nobody's forcing me to use those units, so that's no hair off my back.
I think the IG is the fluffiest, most characterful codex out there specifically because of the compulsory HQ and platoon structure. Real militaries aren't that flexible. They're encumbered with regulation and bureaucracy, and I think the mandatory HQ and platoon structure of the Codex does a great job of representing this.
About the "only one HQ" issue, look again. The codex contains 5 HQ choices. A guard army is going to be led by an officer. That's just how armies work. You can choose a generic officer, or you can choose one of the four character officers in the back.
Having to assign advisors from the top down reflects the rigid organization pretty well. Of course this is a weakness, but an army is as much defined by what it can't do as by what it can do.
As for the tank HQ, you can mount any command section in a Chimera and you can give it improved comms. As for the reuseable TMI for any vox-equipped squad on the table, that seems pie-in-the-sky powerful. IG already has many many ways to aid leadership. They have commissars, they have voxes, they have standards, they have officer leadership, they have TMIs. These are all tools to increase leadership. Instead of talking trash about how bad commissars are, think about the fact that just one of them can grant your HQ and any unit in a 2' diameter a Ld of 10! That's half the table. Does this mean you might have to clump your units closer than you might like? Yes, but see above about can and can't do.
I really don't like the idea about the high command group. Again, this is fluff and flavor, but it's kind of silly for the grand poobah of the funkytown rifles to show up for any fight of 2000 points or more. That's like Condoleeza Rice showing up with a retinue of Norman Schwartzkopf with a bazooka and General MacArthur's flame-throwing zombie to lead a hundred guys into battle. I'd rather have it be some anonymous colonel. The IG isn't about powerful HQs. It's about an ordinary guy with a rifle and a helmet and his 200 buddies.
I like the idea about demo charges though. They're a good weapon that adds an element of surprise to a unit. They're legal in cityfight, they're legal for Catachans, they should be for everyone. Heavy flamers seem out of place because they're heavy weapons. I don't think there are any other examples out there of substituting heavy weapons for special weapons.
I'm gonna put this delicately, but IG if you are completely satisfied with the way the Codex is, completely dislike and disagree with any suggestions I've made, and don't have any of your own to make, this really isn't the thread for you. This is the third "Codex Revisions" thread I've run, and each one gathers a good bit of attention, with a lot of people contributing their own ideas, critiquing each other, and so on. So to be completely frank, if you don't like the idea of the thread and don't want to contribute then I'd personally prefer if you just move along to the next thread.
In defense of High Command Groups, the one thing I'll say is that many a time has the enemy overrun normal battle lines, thrusting one side's command post into battle. Your example was rather poor because you cited civilian overseers or generals commanding from distant posts in other countries. A Heroic Senior Officer could very well be a captain commanding his company, with a High Commander being a battalion colonel at the smallest, or field generals, or the such. Apparently White Dwarf and the game creators thought it was fluffy enough as is, so argueing in support of the Codex but against additions produced by those same people undermines your point. But that don't really matter, since you're not exactly interested in the intent of the thread anyway. *shrugs*
unless you mean One HQcommand squad and One Platooncommand squad, you're using an invalid list.Originally Posted by Chimera
HQ command squads are a "1" choice. you have to take "one". not zero, not two.
For the most part, i am happy with IG HQ and IG codex in general. but there are a few obvious parts that need to be revisioned.
All the Advisors. I like Sokhar suggestions in this department. It would make them actually usable. as it is now, anyone using anything but a commissar in a conscript platoon is weakening their list.
they're overpriced and underpowered. even a commissar in a HQ is a waste imho. you're just as good with a HSO w/ a standard. the only thing the commissar does is risk loosing your Leadership bubble and waste 40+pts
The whole idea of advisors is a neat/character/fluffy one. IG is not just a WWII style army with lasguns. they're the hammer of the imperium and bring all the baggage of the imperial cult with them! Commissars are in virtually every IG regiment. and Priests give the notion of Religious fanaticism that is the Emperial Cult. they need rules what will allow them to actually be used in lists that are concerned about being able to win
making them cheaper is a first. but not the psyker, i'd pay a *few* (not many) points, to just make the guy not suck so much. i mean as is, he's next to worthless. your basically spending the pts to give your command squad an extra wound, that's it.
i don't like the idea of BS4 for JOs. these guys are just young officers. they're not seasoned veterans of countless battles. As for BS4 VetSgts, it'll never happen. it seems people who right the rules don't like mixing the BS of squads to much (unless it's an IC). but if they did, you'd see alot more VetSGts w/ Bolters (or StormBotlers).. which imo would be kinda strange. so many vets, with so many bolters.. ? BS4 should be very rare, limited to only extremely skilled squads, not in every line squad!