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Re: [GZG] Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi!

From: John Tailby <john_tailby@x...>
Date: Mon, 7 Jul 2008 17:31:01 +1000 (EST)
Subject: Re: [GZG] Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi!

Gzg-l mailing list
t's a bunch of broad generalisations about GW gamers John, but it's an
opinion so I won't rip into it with demands for facts. When did you last
play the game? Some of the comments you make about the rules sound like
older versions.
Count me and my wargaming club mates, the tournament scene I play in all
as hood wearing cultists then. None of us are kids. BTW watch out we are
People like playing 40k because the models are cool to collect and paint
and you get to use them in a fun game.
I don't think you can take a scifi wargame and apply too much real world
tactics. The capabilities of some units are completely unimaginable with
conventional tactics.
Games of 40k that I saw and played in that were between 2 Imperial guard
armies (closest to modern humans) fighting you get a game much closer to
real wargaming and some modern tactics work when transferred to the
template of the rules.
You will be pleased to know that space marines hit by an anti tank gun
have not gotten an armour save at all when hit by an HE round from a
tank gun. A lucky model might get to stagger out of the blast zone but
everyone else gets liquified. If in hard dover you get some kind of save
to represent hiding behind walls or digging in or whatever.
Infantry are vulnerable to tanks in the open. Tanks can kill hordes of
infantry at range. Infantry are better against tanks in close terrain
and hard for tanks to get at if the infantry can hide out of LOS.
Infantry can deal with tanks at close range with specialist anti tank
weapons (melta guns make for a great bazooka or PIAT launcher) or in
some cases can take them out with anti tank grenades or other anti
armour close assault weapons. It's a risky business tough. If you don't
kill the tank it will likely take a dim view of being assaulted by pesky
infantry and move back and machine the assaulting infantry.
I agree the game designers and authors don't have the real wolrd
experience of say Dale Brown some of the authors get confused between a
platoon and a squad and a fire team. They need a few weeks with the
paras to get their nomenclature down pat. 
I agree this thread has brought up a surprising amount of feeling. I
thought the anti GW feeling was only in the crusty old historical gamers
who thought that 40k and fantasy was taking people away from proper
wargaming like Napoleonic.

----- Original Message ----
From: John Atkinson <>
Sent: Monday, 7 July, 2008 6:35:38 PM
Subject: Re: [GZG] Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi!

On 7/7/08, John Tailby <> wrote:

> I think most authors start from a point about what would be a cool
story to
> tell, and high tech hover tanks is a cool story, as are some of the
> from the 40k universe.

In the case of Hammer's Slammers, it was less that hover tanks is a
cool story, and more that writing stories about Vietnam wouldn't sell
in the 1970s, but if you add some "SF" elements, it would sell.  Never
underestimate the influence of marketability.

As someone who played 40K when I was getting started with miniatures,
I like reading some of the 40K fiction, which oddly enough doesn't
really resemble the results you'd get from playing games of 40K.
There are some cool stories in the 40K universe, but the rules are so
badly broken it's sad.

The essential problem is that none of the GW crew has either military
experience nor any real education on the subject, so they don't
understand what's silly and what's not.  Their target audience is
basically two-fold:  Kids who get their mothers to pay for the minis,
and members of their cult who will accept whatever nonsense they
choose to print.  So they aren't worried about making sense either.
Reference the "marketability" comment above.  They aren't going to
change unless and until their target audience does something else with
their money.

I will aruge that applying Real World tactics does sometimes work in
40K, given the right match-ups.  I've seem reverse-slope defenses
shred orks, and Space Marines in hard cover shoot enough of a
40-figure squad to get them to run because the other player was
marching them across an open field.  I've demonstrated to someone why
having tanks unescorted by infantry in close terrain is a Bad Idea in
a nearly real-world manner.  Granted, it was Space Marine scouts with
anti-armor hand grenades, but given my current job includes a pair of
slides explaining how an RKG (I think--I'd have to check the slides
again) works, that's not enough to trip my suspension of disbelief.

On the other hand, I've also seen a Space Marine take a direct hit
from a tank main gun and survive, and a squad have to concentrate
their fire on a single model, ignoring the entire horde behind it
becaus that model was technically the "nearest squad" and a bunch of
other dumb shit.

I dislike GW's marketing methods and whatnot, but this discussion
seems to have generated far more passion than a frickin' game is
worth, IMHO.

John M. Atkinson
"Thousands of Sarmatians, Thousands of Franks, we've slain them again
and again.  We're looking for thousands of Persians."
--Vita Aureliani

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