So, another round of GW FAQ updates is out, fixing various problems, clearing up questions, most of which shouldn’t have been asked, ALL of which shouldn’t have needed to be asked.
They very noticeably come much faster now, for which, many would argue, I should be grateful. The last Grey Knights and Main Rule Book FAQ was only a month ago. And I do, in way, feel grateful, but as soon as that feeling wells up, I grow bitter, because truth be told, these FAQs should largely be unnecessary. If Games Workshop play-tested in any sort of reasonable manner, most of these ambiguities wouldn’t exist. Unleash your average cynical gamer on something like the new Grey Knight Codex, and inside an hour, I think most of them would have had at least 80% of the questions I finally compiled. Only about half of which were answered by the original FAQ, and only a tiny fraction more were answered by the recent update. The fact that the original codex had so many ambiguities, and the FAQ only answered half the questions, is reflective of a fundamental un-seriousness in Games Workshops rules process. Don’t they care about rules, balance, a game that works?
No, they do not. Games Workshop is simply un-serious about rules. They design their rules around 12 year-old boys, and older gamers drinking beer and eating pretzels. You want a tight game, a game that cares about rules, what they mean, and how they can affect the outcome of two adults competing with each other in game of wits, that also happens to involve prettily painted toy soldiers? Go play warmachine. I’m serious, that’s GWs answer.
You know how I know? First new bit in the Main Rule Book FAQ: “Q: When two special rules or effects contradict each other how is this resolved? (p2) A: Roll off using ‘The Most Important Rule!”
Fuck off, GW. You plan to fail. If you wrote rules like they mattered, as if the game, which sells your models, was based upon them, you wouldn’t put forth answers like this. You’d seek to resolve the inconsistencies, ambiguities, and outright conflicts one by one until there simply weren’t anymore.
If you’re not aware of how much better and more logical a system warmachine is, you simply haven’t read the rules. Oh, I’m not saying you have to like the game, overall, aesthetics certainly has a lot to do with it, but the fact that rule system is tight, barely ever open to interpretation, and balanced, is unquestionable. If you are familiar with the system, how many times can you think of that people were unsure of how a rule worked, even in a complex interaction with another rule? How much and how long was somethign strongly unbalanced allowed to persist for? Oh, it has happened, I can think of a few instances. Count on one hand kinda “few”. How many can you think of has happened with Games Workshop rules?
Many hundreds, at least. You know it’s true.
Yes, the new FAQs come much faster. Yes, that’s progress. I’m reasonably sure they’ve been driven to this by Warmachine’s rise in popularity, and the acknowledgement that a lot of that is probably driven by a sensible ruleset.
And even with these changes brought about by Privateer Press eating their lunch, still they’re so lackadaisical? I am almost literally disgusted.
Rules are important. Rules matter. Rules lead to a system in which “tactics” can flourish. And as a intellectual, macho gamer — I basically play this game to measure my brain against my opponents — tactics are far and away what I care about.
And games workshop, which just happens to own the most popular war game system at the time, does not. And it pains me.
Let’s look at what the recent changes brought, shall we? Nothing momentous at all, but yes, it is good they’re making efforts.
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