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Discussion Starter #1
First, I gotta say, without having seen either book (they are still in the mail, somewhere), that I rather like both ideas. I don't see IG getting too much use out of Escalation, but oh well. The availability of new structures, and access to superheavies are both cool. So, this is not to say that now everyone will be using a Lord of War, or cover their field in new fortresses (I don't even know how they'll work, now; additional Fort slots?), but does Escalation sort of make irrelevant much of Stronghold? I say that because, as I understand it, the rare D-Strength gun can crater a building in a single blast, and most of the time. Many also have an equally good range (the ones I saw quickly, as I type this, averaged around 100"). So, while every game won't have a superheavy, sporting a Destroyer gun, they CAN, and "regular" games I've played don't have the same table size as an Apocalypse game, meaning that your building can't really be far enough away.

I know that, in Apocalypse, you just put up with this (it's what first made the Supreme Castellan's Command post, one of my favorite-seeming units, appear as a bad call), but even there, the access to fortifications might not have been ridiculous. Now, we have a book devoted to them, and it follows a book with stuff that insta-dusts them. Even massive fortifications, also from Apocalypse, don't seem to be any more able to repel such impacts, even though I don't imagine every building in those stories was leveled. How big a problem is this? What might be some good workarounds, now that Lords of War are becoming more "any game", and less "on the weekend, when we have the whole weekend." Again, six Leman Russes is more likely than one Baneblade, but one Shadowsword, or more likely, perhaps, one SM Thunderhawk, can spell the doom for any structure you establish, just so long as it HITS. Someone please put my mind at ease? Thanks.
 

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Stronghold Assault is a great supplement. It has all the fortifications so far published (including the ones that previously got rules only with the kit itself) and a couple which don't have models yet. Some fortifications are actually AV15 with Massive Bulwark special rules, which makes them somewhat resistant against D-weapons. Rules section has two pages of updates and clarifications for things like Deep Striking into buildings, assaulting out of buildings and such. Plus it has an updated building damage table which takes into account the emplaced weapons. All this material is fully usable in regular 40K games without any changes. There are also three special missions which use a new FOC (defender has minimum of one Fortification and can have up to three).

Escalation I haven't looked at yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Ah, some of this does sound better, then. Not entirely sure what the AV 15 and Massive Bulwark do vs Destroyer weapons; I remember hoping to read something in that, in Aoc, specifically refering to "for every weapon meant to topple a titan, a titan is built to resist the weapon", sort of a this is the Titan-class structure, maybe a building with void shileds, or something. The palace of an Planetary Governor, for instance, should survive ONE hit from anything, and not just because it's actually several buildings. Oh well, no biggie.

I like the new FOC; sort of makes me feel that my fanfic mini, Krueger, had a cool idea with the Base Commander ability, where he got a second Fort. slot, in place of an HS slot; it was fitting with his background, too. Nice to see the game borrow, even if unknowingly. ;)
 

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I think Stronghold Assault is a welcome addition. More options for Fortifications isn't a bad thing, and more scenarios doesn't hurt.

Escalation is bad though since I am a firm believer that Super Heavy and Gargantuans belong in Apocalypse where they were meant to shine.
 

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I think Stronghold Assault is a welcome addition. More options for Fortifications isn't a bad thing, and more scenarios doesn't hurt. Escalation is bad though since I am a firm believer that Super Heavy and Gargantuans belong in Apocalypse where they were meant to shine.
I don't see super heavys or gargantuan creatures inherently bad for the normal games, they are just bigger and more resilient, often with more guns.

The issue I have with them is SD weapons. I have hated d weapons from the start, apoc or not. Having half of my army taken out in a single shot isn't fun. Ever. Why did I even bother putting the models on the table to begin with if they die first turn with no chance of doing anything? Sorry, but forget that. I will stay home and play Skyrim or something instead.

So, being a massive hater of d weapons I could simply avoid playing apoc games. But with D weapons being available in a regular game? Yeah... No. Not a fan.

The book has made some ways to give a fighting chance for the non Titan using player, and against a non d weapon toting super heavy, that's FINE! I have no issue with them. But I'm sorry, I really don't want to just be pie plated to death turn one by a single gun.



The one reason to play apoc with d weapons was to have fun rolling dice, have some beer and just play a game without tactics being needed. But in a regular game, tactics an timing and all of that is essential, and unless I know before making a list that I will face a Titan with d weapons or something, basically no list I make can counter one. If you play a 1500pt game and someone takes msu troops and a bare bones leader to get that d weapon on the board, all he has to do to win 90% of the time is keep his small stuff in reserve and then out of LOS when they come on and let the d weapon do the work. That's not a fun game, that's a waist of time...

Chances are if my buddy's and I play with the rules, we will just say no d weapons, use whatever you want, just don't be a **** with d. Then I'm fine with the book. Hell, it could even make for some fun games seeing a storm lord tank on the table. I just can't stand d. It's too powerful and requires no brain function to use. Point and click. That's it.
 

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I will be getting Stronghold assault suplement. I think it looks really good and adds some nice new rules and options.

Escalation, I will not be wasting money on for several reasons.

I think superheavies are too powerful in regular games particularly as there are no rules restricting them. If you want a Thunderhawk, 2x5 scouts and a librarian in a 1000 point game you can take it which seems silly.

Strength D weapons are over the top but one isn't so bad. Watch out for the Eldar titan chucking 4 strength-D 5" templates a turn with guide cast upon it and able to split fire at 2 different targets. One option our group has considdered for escalation is to use the strength D rules from the first edition of apocalypse for escalation games and even for apocalypse games. An auto-pen with +1 damage table isn't so overpoewered and you still get invulnerable saves.

Lastly the Escalation rules aren't that extensive. They reprint the apocalypse superheavy rules and datasheets which I already have. Then they add a warlord table and 2 tiny paragraphs of rules regarding bonuses to seizing initiative and extra VPs for damaging superheavies and thats it for £30! I dont even need to photocopy or illegally download this I can just remember it after taking a peek in the local GW.
It's a bit like their codex suplements like Farsight or Iyanden - new warlord table, new army relics and a tiny rule change to what unit can count as troops etc and they expect people to pay the same again for this additional codex.

I can't see Escalation becoming that widely used and would have preferred it to be like planet strike or cities of death where people agree for a change to play an Escalation game to dust off the baneblades. I know GW tournaments will allow it but it would have been very surprising if they admitted they were unbalanced and banned things which would have restricted sales. But then GW don't run many tournaments anymore and I cant see other tournamnets allowing them very often. I will not be entering any that do and I expect most tournaments to forbid escalation to provide a better gaming experience.



I can see a few good uses for Escalation however.

When playing Apocalypse you get the option to just include all your units. Make up some silly reason why the TAU are playing with the CSMs and necrons and just go for it. Some groups will restrict the combinations of allies, the number of superheavies or the number of strength D weapons etc to stop things going over the top. This has been going on for years and now Escalation provides you with an option to play Apocalypse games using a Codex legal force using a double or tripple FOC chart etc and bringing in your ally FOC and your superheavy and your fortification etc. Saying each player in our 3v3 apocalypse game can bring 3,999 points will give each player 2-4 HQ, 6 elite, Fast and heavy, 12 troops, 2 full ally contingents (could relax to allow from different codexes), 2 superheavies and 2 fortifications. By doing this all of a sudden Apocalypse army lists become less Spammy and look more realistic (alright I know its a made up game but you know what I mean)
 

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I took a long look at Escalation today in GW shop and ended up buying more Fortifications instead of it. I have to agree with Mad Cat: Stronghold Assaul is great, Escalation is money down the drain.
 
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I took a long look at Escalation today in GW shop and ended up buying more Fortifications instead of it. I have to agree with Mad Cat: Stronghold Assaul is great, Escalation is money down the drain.
Try living somewhere your only option for 40k is organized league play. Due to not wanting to be in a shop or around kids so I can actually have Beer with my Beer & Pretzels game my only option for 40k is the local LGC and they only do League / Campaign play. I don't get to choose my opponents and refusing/for fitting too many matches get you kicked out of the rotation.

I have not had a game that didn't involve one of those books since they came out.
 

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I have not had a game that didn't involve one of those books since they came out.
And how did you find it?
 
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And how did you find it?
Stuff I've Used
Void Shield Generators: 1500pts Orks w/Farsight Allies vs Nercons; See Ork sub forum for an image of my Ork VSG model. It basically decided the game for me between having battlements above ground level to place my Lootas in & protecting my Mega-Dred and Looted Wagon on the first and part of the second turn. They were able to last long enough to each fire their Kill Kannon and Boom Gun respectively twice which took out quite a few more warriors than I am able to kill prior to assault. It also served as a damn good distraction which mean only one Annihilation Barge and Tomb Blade squad were set on my 5 Biker Nobs with 5 Combi-Scorchas. On the 3rd turn they smoked the only unit of warriors holding my opponents emperors will objective instead of being dead, in turn this mean his Night Scythe warrior squads diverted to his side of the board to reinforce that objective /deny me line breaker instead of pushing the assault on my objective. It basically set a ball rolling that ended in me winning.

Stompa: 1500pts Orks vs. Farsight Enclave; Barely mattered at all. He kept his scoring units out of its LoS effectively and was Farsight Bombed (plus support) off the table on turn 2. Ended the game right there because I had all of 30 Boys and 2 Battle Wagons who were not in it.

Stuff Used On Me
Aquila Strongpoint: 1500pts Space Marines w/Farsight Allies vs IG: Two desperate games, one was earlier today. The first game I failed to destroy it with a suicide metla drop. It did eventually destroy it but by the time I did I had lost most of my scoring units to either it, my opponents basilisk or his two vendettas with plasma vets. I raged pretty hard that he was able to fit all this into one list but in the end he wasn't cheating just using guards scoring units being cheap to his full advantage. In the end he only won by a single victory point. In the second game my suicide melts squads destroyed it a turn earlier than before and I kept two tactical squads in storm ravens I had to borrow from another club member just for this rematch. When it was gone several of his scoring units died in the collapse and it came down to dog fighting his vendettas when they came on with my own flyers to decide who won and this time it was me but only by 1 VP (slay the warlord; who died in the collapse).

Imperial Strongpoint (2 Bastions w/Icurus, 2 Aegis w/Icurus): 1750pts Necron vs Tau; Yeeesh! Aun'Va and 36 Fire Warriors in 4 squads w/2 Devilfish, 2x6 Pathfinders, Iontide and 2x2 Missilesides sitting in this monster. He deployed it as far up his deployment zone towards the board center as he could. He had EWO on everything that could take it on top of the Las cannons. He blew down every one of my three night scythes by turn 3. It only didn't end right there because it was the Scouring and he had no Fast Attack (that was not sitting on the tops of the bastions) and I had 2 units of Wraiths and my Warriors were able to walk on instead of dying in the crashes. Still two of 6 man fire warrior squads got in their devil fish and were able to still go out and get some objectives. 3 of the objectives were unfortunately within 15" of the massive fortification because duh, he got to place half. I didn't even try to take those because Aun'Va invoking Fire. The Iontide ended up hunting down my warrior squads and we called it on turn 5 rather than dragging it out.

Baneblade: 1750pts Necrons vs IG: No problems at all. Nigjt fighting turn 1. Solar Pulse turn 2. I charged it with Destroyer Lord & Wraiths on turn 2 then dumped out two ten man warrior squads each with a harbinger of the storm with them on turn 3 and finished it. My opponent was visibly infuriated when I declared solar pulse and held most of my army back after the first turn had already been night fighting. Game was a tie in the end. We each held an objective, 2 were contested, I had line breaker and first blood and he had line breaker and slay the warlord.

Edit: Do note that every game but the rematch vs IG was arranged ahead of time so there was a fair amount of tailoring and trying to 2nd guess each other going on.
 

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Try living somewhere your only option for 40k is organized league play. Due to not wanting to be in a shop or around kids so I can actually have Beer with my Beer & Pretzels game my only option for 40k is the local LGC and they only do League / Campaign play. I don't get to choose my opponents and refusing/for fitting too many matches get you kicked out of the rotation.

I have not had a game that didn't involve one of those books since they came out.
Damn, that sucks. I don't care for the group that plays at my LFGS, and being a small town, there's nowhere else to go. But I kept going, and eventually ran into folk that are on my wavelength. Now I don't go into the LFGS much unless I'm picking up the odd pot of paint or get impatient on some models.

Anyways, it sounds like most of your gaming experiences with the expansions have been fairly even (from VP sounds) except for against the Tau. At least, no worse off than any other game out there.
 
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I plan on using a Transcended C'tan in the first game I run with my Necrons after the holidays. I will do a write up on it for the Necron subforum.
 
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