Dark Angels FAQ... great

Image from Games Workshop

My thoughts on the new Dark Angels FAQ. I don't know if I should be more excited or not. I guess this is a good thing in the end. To be honest, most of it doesn't apply to me since I play Deathwing and even then, I only use certain weapons (like heavy flamers). But I don't feel as though I'm as excited as some others out there seem to be about the whole thing.

I'm certainly not running out and equipping all my guys with storm shields and cyclone missile launchers as quick as I can.

Don't get me wrong, I'm glad GW is stepping up and getting more "timely" FAQs out for players to use, but all this one does for me is allow me to use the changes I would have already made to my list "unofficially" before in an "official" capacity now. Three plus storm shield saves and two shot cyclones... who wasn't using those before? Besides, GW tells us to play it how we want and as long as your opponent agrees, why not?

I'm still on the fence about the smoke launchers thing.
And does my Power of the Machine Spirit have a BS of 4 now too... officially?

And the whole Feel No Pain thing. What was wrong with the old Apothecary Narthecium/Reductor rules? Those seemed to work just fine. Now I've got to figure this FNP thing out. Could be worse though I suppose, I could lose my Fearlessness. That would stink.

Like I said, I'm glad Games Workshop is making the effort to update things. And I can understand them trying to bring things in line with Universal Special Rules and such. Maybe it's because I don't play in tournaments that I don't have the driving need for clarification or upgrades like this. Maybe it's because I don't technically have an army right now, but that's not the point.

Fearlessness... that's what I love. Do you know that Deathwing Terminators (if the Grey Knight rumors hold true) will be the only Fearless Terminators out there? I think if that goes away with our new Codex (whenever that comes around), I'll still keep that one for my army.

Ron, From the WarpIf you've got any questions about something in this post, shoot me a comment and I'll be glad to answer. Make sure to share your hobby tips and thoughts in the comments below!


  1. Any new FAQ has got to be a good thing right? At least they've made an effort to bring some of the older books that they know won't be re-worked for some time, back into line with the rest of the books.

    Granted, Dark Angels won't go shooting to the top of any tournament leaderboards but at least the die-hard players will have something 'new' to get excited about, if only for a while.

  2. Big Steve: Maybe it's a tournament thing. I just don't understand why people don't make the adjustments for themselves when playing against friends.

    I wonder if those few things are that big of a deal breaker in the overall scheme.

  3. I think it's the majority mindset thinking 'if GW don't say it, then it can't be true'.

    It's odd, people want the freedom to do what they like with their toy soldiers but that need GW to tell them it's ok first? Very odd.

    It takes me back to the older FAQ where it was in print that the codex SM rules could be used in DA forces with opponents consent - people got very vocal about that as they wanted a yes or no answer, not something that could be bent out of shape so easily.

    Heck, I can't argue, it's almost making me want to paint some Deathwing.

  4. I only ever play with friends, and I only played old codices until recently. Never did I ever actually ask them to use the update rules. I thought about it, and how it would make life so much easier for me, but something stopped me from doing it. There are always other hidden costs and gems from old things that you might not want to see updated, such as Smoke Launchers and Targeters, so I figured updating one thing would just lead to me playing Codex: Space Marines with my Codex: Grey Knights.

    I know it wouldn't have ended that way, but I was a bit afraid. Plus, I didn't like trying to seem like a "Win at all costs" kind of guy and complain about my old codex; I picked an old army so I was going to play it. It was a bit of pride and a bit of shyness on my part, so I'm glad GW did go to updating these things. It's nice to see that they know the old needs revamps, even if it is only to increase sales.

  5. I don't think that those items were necessarily deal-breakers, but honestly, a 3++ stormshield beats the pants off of a 4++ in-melee-only shield.

    It's the fact that the gear's got the same name and is nominally the same stuff, yet the rules differ between codices. Admittedly, that's something that can potentially happen if you've got multiple books on a different update schedule that talk about the same basic kind of thing.

    That aside, their 'with opponent's consent' thing felt like a cop-out. The customer pays a fair chunk of money for the models to play a GW game, and assumes that GW will give them rules. Saying 'with your opponent's consent' isn't saying anything. It's saying "Do what you're doing now," because I'm sure there were people that were doing just that with opponent's consent.

    When you go to the keeper of any rule, you're kind of hoping for a clean answer. If you have a tight ruleset, people are more likely to play the game.

    While this FAQ (...which, frankly, is GROSSLY overdue) may be 'just for the money' it's a fact that GW needs the money. If you're going to drop $300-500 on a game, you want to make sure that it works well.

  6. FYI fearless is horrible... especially for terminators, or any high cost models. losing a terminator to a fearless save is the worst part about deathwing, and what makes them almost unplayable in any sort of normal capacity.

  7. Anon: I disagree. Fearless means you have to come get me off an objective. You can't shoot me off it it from a distance, inflict 25 percent casualties and hope to knock me off.

    That means it affects how you play your army.

  8. Anon: That's not true at all. If you are losing combat with 5 man terminator squads to the extent that you are then losing even one more terminator to Fearless saves... you were going to die anyways.

    Also, the biggest benefit of Fearless is immunity to getting tank shocked off the board (something that happens to Terminators frequently enough to be obnoxious).

    Fearless is great for small elite units. Where it sucks is for things like Ork Boyz that lose by eight in a combat with 4 units involved and suddenly they are making 32 fearless saves on T-shirts. That sucks.

    Ron: I think we move in very different worlds. Though I do understand your attitude I don't know that it's the one that all or even most GW gamers have these days. The rules are followed pretty strictly where I come from, and I for one find the 'opponent consent' to be a cop-out on the part of games designers who can't be arsed to update a PDF that would take me an hour to write.

    Anyways, also wanted to say that I love your content and your hobby musings are top notch. Keep it up man.

  9. Purgatus: I know I'm in the minority. I'd like to see GW write an overall tighter set of rules. And I'm talking about the main rules at that.

    But... they haven't yet and probably aren't going to in the near future. I can see where people who like to have that framework get upset that it's not there. Completely understandable. I played a game the other day where we didn't sweat the exact rules and my opponent and I didn't have any problems.

    There's nothing wrong with either way. I just don't have the need for them that some (most all) others seem to have.

    And thanks for the kind words Sir.

  10. For me the big bonus is the machine spirit for the LR.

    Although the 'feel no pain' will also be an added bonus. Because Ron, like you said the current rule of ignoring one wound is cool, but now every model in the squad gets feel no pain for every wound they get (barring insta-death stuff, and etc) but I think that will give the command quad that extra survivability they always needed.

    and to echo others here I play mostly with friends and we basically follow the rules, and I have asked to do some stuff like field my mortis dread, but basically since GW published this FAQ my DeathWing army is going to finally dust itself off and get back on the table because asking everyone to let me combine two codexs just seemed cheesy to me.

    "Oh I don't like this old rule, I'll use the new one, but this rule is ok because it's a good old rule." Now any of that ambiguity is gone and I don't feel like a cheese monger, GW has selected the things that clearly needed an update and fixed them simply and easily.

  11. I hardly ever play 40K and mainly its because of the rules differences on the same equipment and some rules just simply do not make any sense. I definitely don't like the idea of changing rules based on the opponent's consent - you are playing 40K or you are playing something that is not 40K. GW does a bad job supporting the rules for game they sell and it should not fall upon the customers to make decisions or consent about the rules.

  12. Charles: I agree, GW does not do as good as they could/should/we would like them to.

    I think most 40k players understand that and have taken to fixing it themselves. We've (40k players) got a huge unofficial FAQ out there. Right or wrong, it's out there for us to make sense of what GW gives us. Since we can't seem to get them to do it, we've taken it into our own hands.

    Me... I'm just a bit more liberal with my application of the rules overall. Guidelines I like to think of them as. But, I don't play in tournaments either and don' t really have a pressing need for the clear cut exact rules.

    I know it must seem almost impossible to play against some one like me who cares as little as I do for the rules. Well, it's not that I don't care, I just don't pay attention to them as much as others.

  13. Well I'm for one who's pleased with the FAQ. It's a (small) step in the right direction of weapons and wargear parity that GW should have produced as soon as the 5th Ed C:SM came out.

    Its only fault is that in reality it's Deathwing that has come out the best, with Ravenwing (Typhoons) coming a close second. Poor old Greenwing follows on limply behind with some buffs to the Whirlwind and Techmarine. OK so I generalised but it's pretty near the truth.

    Roll on 2012(?) for a 'proper' DA Codex eh?


  14. Isiah: It is (a small step) in the right direction. I don't run thunderhammer/storm shields or cyclones in my list. I think PotMS might help me more now, but I'm not sure to be honest.

    I'm fairly confident my gaming group would allow me to play it whatever I wanted in the end.

    Maybe I'm more happy that others are getting the updates they desperately need more than I am the Dark Angels getting more cool/current stuff.


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