Deadzone Experiments

Before we get into any new rules in the upcoming Kickstarter, what did you all think of the two experimental rules I posted some months back for Deadzone? If you have no idea what I’m on about I’ll wait while you refresh your memory (they are here and here).

There was some discussion at the time, but now you’ve had a few months to play them what do you think? First impressions are useful, but even more useful is experience. Have you been using them? Did they unbalance anything else?

Do you think these rules should be made official?

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62 Responses to Deadzone Experiments

  1. Teemu Hemminki says:

    Excessive force makes many models much more viable (like Marauder Hulk).
    Negative side is that it tips the balance against Plague, which might be not so bad thing as they can be really devastating in dense terrain.

  2. Pikaraph says:

    Rule for opening with less moving models during first turn should take account of Indirect Fire weapons that can hit several models if they can’t move quickly enough.

    • Weapons with Indirect Fire can’t fire them in Turn 1 anyway. At least not Indirectly.

      • PikaRapH says:

        That’s why I say to take care about this : if you may move less models during the first turn, thay can spread less and when indirect weapons will be activated, they’ll be more deadly because of this. Maybe this is not a game breaker, but the balance changes a little.

        • Bill says:

          Pika- I’m sure the rule still works for activation. The only difference, I see, is how many you activate during that first full turn, not round.
          Let’s say I have 6 Maruarders with the 3-2 command. I would more 3 then my emery, the back to me as the second half of the first turn.
          Am I correct t in this thought?

        • VaultAge says:

          @Bill : A round includes multiple turns, not the other way around, so the experimental rule works like that :
          Round 1 :
          Turn 1 – Me : activate with less than command total (if i have a 3/3 commander : 3 activation)
          Turn 2 – You : same thing (if you have a marauder captain 3/2 : 3 activations
          Turn 3 – Me now with 6 possible activations

          What Pikaraph says and i think he has a point there is : on turn 3, if I have something like artillery (like the Goblin Heavy Mortar : Range 10, Indirect, Massive Frag…), I can shoot at your whole strike team still in its deployment zone and probably kill most of them outright (massive frag)… and still can move an additional 5 models to spread out in cover (so probably more than half of my team).

          In a mirror match where both would have artillery, the outcome of the combat would rely only on who wins the initiative as you cannot retaliate on my turn 3 mortar shot : I kill say half of your team with one shot, spread out, then it’s Turn 4, you shoot with mortar and have probably to pick up between single targets so the effectiveness of your actions is strongly reduced by the fact that you probably have now less models than me and cannot retaliate effectively to bring the balance back.

          So I get a strong advantage by having a lucky initiative roll which would have nothing to do with players skills.

        • Pikaraph says:

          VaultAge said everything 😉
          That’s the problem with Indirect-only weapon. Maybe they should start shooting only until round 2.

      • Tom says:

        Not doubting you, but where do you get that rule from? I’m not seeing it.

      • Tom says:

        Wow. I thought it was a pretty poor show when in order to use troop cards that came in my Faction Starter pack I needed rules that were not in the Rulebook but hidden away in a blog post. Now you tell me that the rules on the blog post are wrong and the correct rules are further hidden in a separate campaign book? And there are no official indications I can find anywhere that this is the case? The nicest thing I can say about that is it is incredibly user un-friendly and extremely likely to lead to a majority of people playing the game incorrectly. Not very professional at all.

        • PikaRapH says:

          You’re right, the game needs an all-inclusive rulebook.

        • Quirkworthy says:

          @Tom – The rules on the blog were beta and quite naturally superseded by the ones printed in the books. An all-inclusive rulebook would be nice, but what happens if we expand? Does the game atrophy because it cannot be added to lest it break the sanctity of a single volume? If we did that then we’d be called unprofessional for abandoning it. Should rules never change from the beta when playtesting shows that they should? That sounds unprofessional too. Can’t win 😦

          As any game expands, the full rules and updates will only be available to those who have sought out every last bit of FAQ and read every publication. This is true for any of the games by GW, Privateer Press, and pretty much everyone else with a game that is more than one book big. I remember playing 40K when you needed half a dozen books and a small pile of White Dwarf articles to be anything like up to date. More recent versions usually need the specific codex to have the rules for a given army.

          You are right that we could signpost it better. That’s something we should work on. But the root problem is not one that is either unique to DZ or going to go away any time soon.

        • Tom says:

          Adding new rules as you expand is fine. My frustration is that I had no idea where these new rules were and no easy way to find out! Found a false positive via Google and only via a blog comment find that the rule I want is in fact in a very non-obvious separate book. We’re not talking a major expansion or update to an existing rule here, just a basic ability description for a troop found in the starter deck.

        • masterslowpoke says:

          Is that not what Mantic Digital is perfect for?

        • Quirkworthy says:

          @Tom – I know, and in my original manuscript it was in the core book too. That was the plan. However, when it came to layout not everything would fit, and the things that got removed were those that were related to models in the second KS wave of releases which also included another book (with the rules in). I don’t think that was a terrible decision, but as you say the signposting could be better.

          @masterslowpoke – for me, the updatability is the primary benefit of digital editions. That wasn’t quite the problem we had here, though it is a related solution.

        • Pikaraph says:

          It’s not criticism, I’m just looking for some way to have some official summary sheet with book refercences for example, then people dig through the right book.
          That’s why I make synthesis when I can, this inclues every bit of rules, errata, FAQ to have it complete. That’s a lot of work though (for you and for me ^^ ) but it worth it when playing.

        • Quirkworthy says:

          Useful stuff Pika, though as I said, tricky to keep updated.

        • PikaRapH says:

          You’rer right, apart from a digital living rule, I don’t know how to do it… but I hate reading on a tablet !

  3. Pikaraph says:

    Excessive force is realistic : receiving a HEAT missile in the head makes a big hole even if its’ not a concrete wall ^^

  4. heretic30k says:

    Excessive force seems needed to deal with Plague Swarms and make Snipers less of an auto-pick.

  5. juanbonnets says:

    Hi Jake,

    Our group has been using both experimental rules since they were first published. We’ve found Excessive Force to be very good: it suits the narrative of the game that even a big, mutated monster that can shrug off small arms fire is still going to have its day ruined by an anti-tank weapon. Even with Excessive Force, it is still quite tricky to kill Stage 1As and Plague Teratons etc, and it’s not as if Excessive Force weapons are so common that it reduces the viability of said monsters.

    Regarding the first Turn of the first Round number of activations being equal to the first Command number (for want of a more concise description), we feel that it goes a long way towards rebalancing the tactical advantage that a force with a high Command value Commander can get if the luck of the draw gets them the first Turn. It means there is actually a chance to re-deploy/overwatch/etc before being overwhelmed by e.g. Plague dogs or Mawbeasts.

    In short, having playtested both rules, we wouldn’t want to go back! If they are made official then our group will be happy; if not, we will continue to use them as house rules.

    • Bobalot says:

      I’ll add my reply here since we are part of the same group and have a similar opinion. In the many many games we have playtested excessive force in I don’t believe it’s made a difference more than twice. Taking the classic enforcer vs plague example, an enforcer rocket troop will be shooting with 3 dice, or 4 if he is elevated verses the 3 survive dice of a 1st gen, 4 if he is in cover. most of the time this is not going to result in him even willing the roll off. Conversely an enforcer sniper is rolling 5 dice or 6 against the same model making it much more likely to get some of those exploding 8s and taking the 1st gens head clean off. So I think excessive force doesn’t unbalance the game, in fact I would say it barely effects the game at all but it adds that Deadzone quality of rules immitating life that I love so much. If a vehicle mounted H.E.W beamer hits you, unless you are some sort of Enforcer Cruiser I expect there to be more than just a dent in your armour.

      As for the first turn activation rule, it makes things a little bit more interesting and allows other races to upset the enforcers initiative monopoly, so I really like it as I would anything that breaks up the game activations from a set pattern. Infact I would think a Me Next battle card would make for some interesting game moments!

    • Chris says:

      Hi Juan,

      I like your wording and its interesting to read your groups experience. What is the usual points value you play with and how many terrain sets do you use (per mat)? Without the experimental rules and low point values we find Plague unbeatable. With them stage 2s are much less of a problem.

      • juanbonnets says:

        Hi Chris, we’ve found Plague are definitely beatable in our group, though they are mostly picked by some of the less experienced players so I expect that to change over time. I mostly use Rebs and the key units seem to be Soraks and both Grogans. Reducing Aggression is a Rebs strength and one that is particularly important against Plague. The most consistently victorious faction in our group is the Marauders, commanded by my good friend Bobalot who commented just above!

        Most of our games have been standard 70-point, single mat in a campaign setting. The amount of terrain is what came in the kickstarter pledge plus either a landing pad or fortifications battlezone, depending on whose house we play at – If I recall correctly that’s about 3.5 Battlezones worth of scenery. We’ve tried a few 100-point games on the same board.

        We’ve also played a good few 100-point, double-mat games most of which used the Battle Systems sci fi Stronghold set of card scenery as an interior area of the battlefield. Those were fun!

  6. Koltoroc says:

    Excessive Force devalues tough and very tough too much. Most models that rely on either tend to have low armour and that means that tough/very tough is easily removed by moderate AP weapons.

    The problem with high AP weapons is, that there are no real targets for them. I expected the walkers to have armor 4-5 to give high AP weapons a purpose, but that is not the case. Unless the next expansion adds APCs and MBTs I really have to question why we have AP 5 or 6 at all, since they have no purpose. Just using high AP weapons as a way to give irresistible is a cheap cop out, if that was the idea, why don’t they have irresistible to begin with? It would have been better to use the walkers to introduce targets that need high AP weapons to take on.

    Irresistible is like Beast, a rule for a specific purpose, that, while it is a good idea, is not properly used and effectively superceded by an alternative rules mechanic. doing the same thing.

    I would like to see weapons Errata’ed to include irresistible if necessary and/or Targets with proper armour values of 4-6 to give high AP weapons a proper use. But this tendency of using second mechanics for the same effect as an already existing ability needs to stop.

    Speaking of beast, I would like it reworked so that models need beast to be banned from picking u, equipping or using items, modesl with shoot “-” can equip and pick up items, but not use them if they need a shoot stat and related to this, items categorized in, for the lack of a better term, “active” and “passive” items, with passive ones being the items that can be used by shoot “-” models. Of course that includes properly changing unit cards to include beast were appropriate.

    This is a general issue I have with some of your rules, you first introduce an ability that does x but then instead of using x outside of homeopathic doses you instead introduce mechanic z that does effectively the same thing but on a broad scale.

    and in this specific case it is a band aid to make weapons more desirable that you failed to introduce proper targets for (Iron Ancestor, a walking tank for all intents and purposes is Armour 2? really?)

    As for the second rule, I have no real opinion, never used it. But then, I rarely if ever use (or see them used, for that matter) high command stat models, they are normally too expensive for what you get and other models are more effective leader stand ins.

    • Jack Trowell says:

      I use a variant of excessive force myself, where each 2 points of unused AP can be used to cancel one level of Tough/Very Tough.

      This give a similar effect to the experimental rule, but with a better repartition and more use for high AP values.

      I made a table to compare both :

      • PikaRapH says:

        I’ll try it, it seems good to me.

        • Jack Trowell says:

          Note that with the “official” version, AP4 is enough to pierce any base protection of the existing units (as the best available for now is Armor 2 and VT on the Plague Terraton), meaning that AP4 make irresistible weapons redundant. In my variant, you will need AP5 or 6 to pierce completly the toughest targets, making AP6 similar to AP4 irresistible.

    • Sannop says:

      Good post. I agree with the lack of cohesion between rules as written and their impact on actual gameplay. It seems that other factors that never came to fruition influenced the rules.

  7. Blax says:

    Both are very good and would welcome them in an offical form.

    One thing that I jave found that possibly should be changed is “sniper” personally I have moved and shot with a pistol more often than the sniper rifle because it is more flexible and allows setups of clear shots. Now I dont disagree that models should be able to use the sniper bonus with a pistol or any weapon that can shoot for that matter but I dont think you should be able to move before. Now making it long action sounds good but then it nerfs sniper to be on a par with marksman + aim so some clever wording needs to prohibit movement before using sniper.

    • VaultAge says:

      Why not make it that way : give an additional +2 to the +1 “Take Aim” Action would make it more consistent with the sniper stuff.
      So with Take aim, gets you +3 without colliding with Marksman +1

      • Blax says:

        While I initially thought thats great idea I then realised that most of the sniper rifle type weapons are deliberate so cannot aim anyway which may be the some of the problems. Maybe sniper should be moved to a weapon skill not a person one.

        • VaultAge says:

          Ah crap, you’re right…that would have been an easyone ^^. I guess using Sniper as a long action for shooting would be the right call then, yet would need to have an additional +1 built in as you lose the possibility to maximize sniper by aiming before. So you would end up with something like Stealh : “Can choose to take a long action to shoot. If the model shoots that way, the action is resolved with a +3 bonus to the dice roll.”

    • MrPyro says:

      What mat size do you play on? I think the sniper rifle becomes a bit more useful on larger map sizes, where it really gets to use that high range value.

      • Blax says:

        Only played on single mats. And yeah I agree that the rifle will come into its own on larger mats.
        My issue with sniper is it seems a hack to wait until something is very close then jump out and use the pistol to get the +2 from sniper and by moving the +2 clear shot as well if you can. I have killed a fair few rebs teratons doing this and more than I have with the rifle.
        Marksman I believe should probably stay as is but sniper should only apply if you have set the shot up properly by not moving.

        • VaultAge says:

          I would advocate to have sniper be something like stealth : model can perform a long action to shoot. If done so, add x dice (or alternatively extend range ?) to shoot action.

        • Blax says:

          I would as well and forgot about that way of writing which fits it perfect now the last question is how does it interact with “marksman”
          Currently you can get either +1 (For marksman) and +1 (For aiming) or +2 (For Sniper) and potentially +1 (for aiming) so Sniper is a direct upgrade of marksman fair enough.

          With the version proposed by vault age you have
          +1 (for marksman) and (+1 for aiming) sniper can only get +2 so they are in fact close to equal.

          Should Sniper be applied to the weapon as a further +1 and Marksman kept as the person ability that way it would allow for sniper weapons to be powerful in the hands of trained marksmen/women/things but also allows for non marksman sniper usage or in fact marksmen using their trusty pistol/rifle/rocket launcher.

          Or also inspired by vault age could sniper allow a model to always count as being in combat range with a weapon? Instead of a +2/+1 modifier and have marksman as the only +1 to shoot ability.

  8. jasb87 says:

    I like the excessive force rule and don’t feel it takes too much away from tough and really tough. It’s not as if there are a huge number of AP3 weapons knocking about in the average strike team. Realistically any enemy with a tough or really tough on its card will have a decent survive stat which means that it ultimately comes down to numbers of dice for shoot versus survive.

    AP3 weapons tend to have deliberate so its incredibly hard to move about to get clear shots and there are no aim bonuses so at a push you will have 4/5 dice for most of these shoot tests (high ground and a shoot card). Comparatively the target is likely to have a cover on their side and with a survive card you are level pegging.

    The survive vs. shoot roll is far more important in my view than any weapon effects and as Excessive force has no effect on numbers of dice it doesn’t cause a huge imbalance. That being said I would prefer it if just weapons with native AP3 or more to benefit from this rule and not those that have been bumped up by weakspots or AP ammo. I’d say that this would help to even out excessive forces’ effectiveness. Snipers are models who could fairly easily bump up to AP3 and I think that is a wee bit unfair.

    The other rule I had completely forgotten you had posted. I say go for it. As has already been said it gives an individual who lost the initiative on the first turn to react to a degree before they get steamrolled by a player with a high command stat.

  9. Sannop says:

    Our group agrees with Koltoroc. The excessive force rule completely devalues tough and really tough. It takes away too much from the game.

    We do see the initial reasoning, but we have ignored the rule as presented. It makes vehicles, stage 1s and other units useless compared to an AP weapon.

  10. Peter B says:

    Excessive Force is necessary but perhaps somewhat blunt in its execution (personally, I prefer simply having each level of Tough be canceled by 2 points of AP) and, as others have noted, it can be tough on the large Plague models (the Gen 1A is already horrendously overcosted (compare it to a Forge Guard) and with EF in play it becomes nigh useless). With Plague Swarm & Brokkrs in play, I feel a rule like this is needed but the execution is awkward.

    The new command rule really matters most on open boards. On a dense board, it’s primary impact is just to flip who goes first on turn 2.

  11. BrianS says:

    The new command rule makes the Rebs sad as they will basically never have initiative after those first two activations. Rebs already are disadvantaged in my book by their sup-par missions so it gives me some pause there.

  12. Sam says:

    It is an elegant and simple rule, if the stats had been balanced to take it into account from the get-go, sure.
    But this relegates Plague to the joke team.
    I’ve fought over 30 games Plague vs Enforcer and its the spear thrown into the Rhino in 300 coming to a rest inches from the thrower. The balance is pretty even over multiple games.
    Would you take Armour off Enforcers? Nope.
    Why take Tough off Plague?
    Sure, stuff like the Missile Launchers don’t really have an optimal application in the current rules.
    Wouldn’t that be vehicle rules that should do that? Rather than unbalance the whole game?
    Why not just give Excessive Force to Missile Launchers and be done?
    Why have another rule you have to remember when you could write it on a card?
    You can fix Missile Launchers with minimal impact with two words in the errata.
    Did you design Stage 1A’s so they can hide behind cover and skulk about?
    The model looks like he’s fearlessly striding into combat, he should play that way.

    • Blax says:

      I dont think it is just there to fix missle launchers anything with AP over 3 is really a waste of points at the moment becasue it doesnt give any advantage.

    • Chris says:

      Hi Sam,

      I’ve played 20 Plague VS Enforcers games (switching sides) and at 70 points, without the excessive force and with one or more terrain sets, the Enforcers have NEVER won. They suppress some plague, Plague break through and their superior number and combat stats eat through the Enforcers. Any thoughts on what we are doing differently?

      • byzantinecataphract says:

        Off Topic: The trick against plague is not just Blaze Away, and an experienced player will NEVER give you clear shot. Instead, get a guy with a Fusion Gun and pin the hell out of them (and Weak Spot to get those pesky 3As), THEN suppress them, and/or get a Defender with a Shotgun to knock them back so they lose Aggression AND need one more Move to get to you.

  13. Michael Kelley says:

    I’ve been playing with the same variant as Jack Trowell, with 2 extra AP cancelling one level of tough, and I think it’s the best option here. You get more granularity in unit differentiation (3 AP, 4 AP, and 5 AP react somewhat differently to the toughest, most armored units), it’s still an easy rule to learn, and most importantly in my mind you don’t go from 2AP sucking against tough, to 3AP totally killing it.
    It seems silly to have such a huge jump in effectiveness. Let it me a gradual, more linear progression.
    But I do think we need something to cancel tough, and make strong guns more valuable… just not the Excessive Force rules as you’ve written them.

    • Pikaraph says:

      Tried yesterday and that’s good to see AP weapons can have some attractive power.
      I wonder if this could give Zombie more strength they should have though : 3 or 4 Zombies in a cube with this rule are able to lower Tough to nothing.

  14. VaultAge says:

    I would rather keep AP rules simple straightforward : it is efficient against Armored models / vehicles (like anti-tanks weapons) without colliding with other mechanics.

    Irresistible is targeted at dealing with big / resilient creatures (eg. that can take a huge amount of damage and still capable to live on – like a T1000) which can otherwise take a missile in the face without getting hurt.

    That leads me to thinking that the Tough / Really tough should possibly be reworked (like granting additional Survive dices instead ?) instead of adding Irresistible and/or Excessive force.

    Especially you could design AP weapons that just cut through armour like cheese (like high-power lasers) yet do not make any substantial damage to a very resilient creature.

    I am in a similar mindset of keeping rules straightforward and not adding a “turn 1 condition”.
    The issue is more that with the Igoyougo turn structure, the high command player get some strategic advantage as he can in essence get an additional turn to play : say if I play with a 2/2 commander against a 1/1 commander, I get to activate 4 models and the opponent will activate 2, so I can play an equivalent of 2 opponent turns with one of mine.

    Additionally, my opponent has no way to avoid moves and getting killed as he cannot react to my activation and can be quickly overwhelmed / eliminated (unless i decide to go and fight in close combat without shooting first)

    So some suggestions to help with this :
    – Allow reactions anytime (eg. every model is in overwatch mode unless already activated) : passive player (sot usually the player with the lesser command value) will switch to defense mode, while not getting double punishment for being defensive. He should be able to attempt to jump in cover / shoot back and such… As overwatch activations are not limited by command total, it would help balance the strategic advantage of more active-ations
    – Tweak mission cards to include initiative / additional free activations depending on the mission structure (like scour can get init and/or more activations per turn).
    – Allow players to discard battle cards to win(back ?) initiative instead of dice roll

    • Blax says:

      Done a quick bit of modelling and by giving Tough and Really Tough extra dice you actually dont effect the results of AP. By this I mean the only thing that AP is now constrained by is the armor which gives the same problems as before an AP 6 weapon is no better at damaging an armor 2 model as an AP 2 weapon.

    • Blax says:

      i dont quite understand where people are coming from that having a high command allows you to move more models and gain an advantage. Surely that is the advantage of having a high command value and they will pay for that in points etc to bring balance.

      The limit on turn 1 I dont mind to prevent high commands from having the advantage straight away and control the flow a bit better.

      Personally i wouldnt want overwatch to be automatic unless you have activated this would lead to a initial situation where it would be a stagnat stand off to see who will move into a field of fire first.

      I would encourage the addition of “steal the initative cards” in some decks probably not in the plague.

      • VaultAge says:

        Activating more models than an opponent will in most games give you the advantage as it gives so much more options to deal with your opponent. The simples would be to blaze away using 2-3 added models in support while your opponent will always get less supporting model to ba attack. This is just one example of raw tactical advantage you get, but there are so many other tactics that rely on cheer command advantage.
        And one cannot counterbalance it by having more models for cheaper as they cannot be used to swarm your opponent as they will activate less at one time.

        As for granting all models to be in overwatch i would say it need some playtesting before stating that it would lock the game at early stage :
        – most moves are made under cover or avoiding enemy los.
        – there is always the risk to fumble the overwatch test and get nothing while having one model uncapable of doing anything when it’s your turn

        • jasb87 says:

          Activating more models than your opponent does give you an advantage and it is an advantage you pay for with reduced points/models. For example, if you take a Peacekeeper captain you limit your strike team to a max 5 models but they can all activate in one turn and you get a decent amount of cards. Yes they are going to maintain the initiative but that makes perfect sense as your team is better commanded by an elite officer.

          If you use your extra activations to add dice to blaze away you aren’t really pressing your advantage as if you add two dice to a blaze away you are losing a further two of your very limited activations to upset one of your opponents.

          Area LOS, not model LOS, is used for overwatch tests which means the majority of models actions could be overwatched against. This would very quickly slow the game to a crawl as the only time the game advances is when models fluff their overwatch tests. I am fairly certain, based on what he has mentioned on other threads, that Jake would never entertain this idea anyway. Of course house rules are always an option if you wanted to tinker with the game. The fast pace and offensive minded nature of the game are some of the big pluses for me.

        • VaultAge says:

          Adding up support to blaze away action is probably not the best tactical action you can undergo, yet it shows that compared to lesser opponent’scommander you just get sheer advantage over him without doing something clever. Yes you pay a deer cost for it, yet you get so much game advantage that i still think it is poor choice to prefer mass over a higher command score.

          Granted, having overwatch tests with area los let you react to most actions. Yet, you :
          – choose wether or not a model will attempt to overwatch, so reaction test is not systematic
          – once you have passed / failed overwatch your model is activated so you have to choose wisely between giving up one activation to counter your opponent or let him have his way to be able to act as you planned
          – on a single success, you act after the enemy model so most times, your opponent will succeed in his action (at a cost).

          So, i fail to see how it would slow down the game to a crawl as you think : While you take 2 turns normally to have your model and its opponent be activated + dice rolls (unless you just move around), you would get all done in one turn.
          … Or maybe i am missing something ?

          “I am fairly certain, based on what he has mentioned on other threads, that Jake would never entertain this idea anyway” : i have been reading a fair amount of threads on dz and have been looking for overwatch clarifications since a while, so i’d would be interested in these threads and / or jake’s thoughts on that… Or this long awaited article dedicated to overwatch topic ^^

        • jasb87 says:

          In all honesty I’ve seen success with both numbers and good command, and even though I’m a big fan of the high command models I’d say you and I are in a minority in supporting them. It largely depends on your play style.

          There is the element of risk/reward in overwatch which works well if you are forced to take a long action to use it. At that point the benefit of interrupting a opponents turn is even greater plus it creates more variety in tactical planning during a game.

          Maybe slowing the game down was the wrong choice of phrase but if the opportunity to use overwatch is always available then it becomes a core mechanic rather than an optional one and fundamentally alters the way the game plays. Players would be much more inclined to wait and see rather than go on the offensive and game plans would focus as much on trying to interrupt as trying to achieve. Also if you were facing the prospect of being overwatched against you would probably hedge your bets and take more long actions than normal to try and minimise the effectiveness of your opponents tests, (if they succeed but act after a short action you lose half a turn). This again reduces the tactical variety on display.

          I’ll be honest I can’t remember which post it was that Jake discussed the overwatch thing with someone but there were parallels drawn with Infinity which I believe uses a similar system in which all models are on overwatch all the time.

        • VaultAge says:

          Yup, the infinity parallel is relevant. I am not an infinity specialist though so i can’t say… Imo its usually the use of a ruler to measure distances that slows games.

          I remember the thread where jake was discussing some camo counters and mentionning infinity as having cumbersome rules.

          Any people has some insights on it ?

          Switching between counter opponent vs. Going offensive is imo what i like in dz : as objectives are hidden and asymetric, you are always in need to balance between preventing your opponent to complete his whereas you need to achieve yours.

          The typical counter tactics much discussed in the blog regards scour missions where the opponent has an easiest way to destroy items to prevent the opponent from ever achieving victory.

          I agree completely that putting unactivated models in overwatch anytime would mean greater risks for the opponent of getting countered, yet this would result in an equal state on both sides in term of activated models (1 model activated on each side).

          It would very probably make any mission much more complex to achieve, yet still think that it would solve the issue related discussed regarding initiative and first turn activations.
          As i said, it is a suggestion among 2 others that i would like to playtest.

          –> Maybe this could be limited to first turn activation so as to avoid this ” infinity syndrom” ?

  15. Greg Kourik says:

    Just throwing this out there.
    How about allowing a strike force to Pass Activate all remaining un-activated models during its turn. By Pass Activate I mean they get marked as Activated and receive and Activation token but they perform no actions just as if they had chosen to do nothing per main rules pg. 21.
    For example: Rebels won initiative and can now activate a max of 2 models this round. They activate two as normal and then Pass Activate the rest (probably 6 more dudes). They have now activated all their models and win initiative for next turn. Of course, 6 models did absolutely nothing…

  16. John McGinty says:

    Excessive force is a good idea but maybe make it start at AP4/5 so u cant stack AP ammo and head shot otherwise the Asterians become a bit OP

  17. I posted back in the original posts. Overall, I think there could be alternatives that could be explored first to meet what these two are meant to. So, no, please do not make these rules official.

  18. I also posted in the Excessive Force post. For a detailed explanation of my thoughts and suggestions, check there, but the nitty gritty of it:

    Excessive Force
    If a model is hit by a weapon with a higher (modified) AP than its Armor value, then it is treated as though it had the Vulnerable ability against that attack. If it is a Vehicle, it suffers from one extra point of potential damage instead.

  19. Pingback: DZ Experimental Thoughts |

  20. sebas says:

    Those rules must be official!!

  21. sebas says:

    Except for the excessive force. It is not useful

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