I was intending to post this in the proposed rules section at Dakka, but I figured I would test the waters in a guard forum first
Introducing the new Grinding advance rules in the Codex helped the Leman Russ immensely, but by itself, was a sloppy fix. The internal balance on the Leman Russ is still a complete mess, so I have some updated turret profiles as well as some addition rules and changes to propose that I think will not only make every Russ variant have a place, but make the entire platform more interesting.
NOTE. While I am placing point values with my proposed changes, these are secondary to the main point of my post and are very malleable
First, I going to go over all of the Turret options (I haven’t thought about the FW options too much, so I’m not going to go into detail on them here)
Battle Cannon: I think most of us are happy with this one. I don’t have any changes in mind. I my head, after the changes to the other guns, I see this as the cheap allrounder.
Punisher Cannon: Same as the battle cannon, Guard players love this one. If anything, it could go up in price a bit.
Demolisher: This one certainly has the firepower worthy of a Russ, so I don’t propose any changes to the weapon itself. Its short range seems to hurt it a bit more than the punisher since many people still don’t use this one a much. So, if it gets any thing it could use a very small point drop, maybe to 35 points. I don’t it should be the most expensive weapon on this list.
Exterminator: This one was a huge disappointment we it came out. After the changes to twin linked weapons, we all thought it would be heavy 8. Now with grinding advance, heavy 8 could be pushing it. I see 2 potential options.
1. Keep the current price and give it heavy 6
2. Bump it up to heavy 8 with a point increase (maybe 10 points)
: This one was silly on GW
's part. You pay 3 points more than the battle cannon for the privilege of being slightly better against T5 targets in cover while be worse at everything else. I propose a full rework here.
Old Profile: Heavy D6 S6 AP-2 d3 damage Ignores Cover (25 points)
New Profile: Heavy 2D6 S6 Ap-2 1 damage Ignores Cover (30-35 points)
What I’ve done is change it to a blast based alternative to the punisher. While the punisher is cheaper and has a lot more shots, this one can:
wound T3 on 2’s
Has some armor penetration
Be a threat to lighter vehicles
The incredible thing is, even against Guardsman in cover, ( T3 5+ and cover), the punisher is still a little stronger, so those last couple advantages are pretty important
Executioner: This one doesn’t really need a change, but I would like to differentiate it more from the battle cannon and make it a bit more interesting.
All of the standard plasma stats would remain the same, but instead of being heavy D6, it would be Heavy 3D3. This thing used to fire 3 shots. This doesn’t come across. Now it, it would be the equivalent of 3 plasma cannons.
Obviously, this is a huge increase in firepower and would warrant a huge point increase. I think this should be the most expensive turret at 40-45 points. Kind of fits with the fluff too, with it being rare.
Vanquisher: Okay, this one was perhaps our biggest disappointment. It’s a one-dimensional weapon that is flat out worse than the battle cannon at the one thing it should be good at.
There are two problems with the weapon
1. It’s very likely to do no damage. Even ignoring the battle cannons higher average damage, poor rolls with the BC are at least likely to do something, while the vanquisher is still all or nothing (with a really good chance of nothing).
2. When it does hit, a maximum of 6 damage just kind of sucks.
My proposed profile is going to seem absurd at first but it’s not a crazy as it seems.
Old Profile: Heavy 1 S8 Ap-3 D6 Damage - Roll 2 D6 pick highest for damage
New Profile: Heavy 1 S14 Ap-4 2D6 Damage - When this weapon is stationary during it’s previous movement phase, add 1 to all hit rolls. (maybe 35-40 points)
I’ve basically taken some things from both the FW Vanquisher, and the Shadowsword.
The Strength, the AP value and the special rule are to give this thing a chance at doing more than 0 damage.
The key this to remember with this one is, while it is now the best at shooting armored targets, it lacks the versatility of the other variants (I've also given it a fairly high proposed price).
I addition to these turret changes, I have a few tweaks to propose to make the platform little more interesting. While the balance between HQ and heavy support Russes isn’t nearly a big a deal as the weapons, it can be improved.
Note: I’m arbitrarily giving a tank orders a value of 10 points for these suggestions. Just like before, the precise point values are not the important parts of the post.
Currently I think people are far to tempted to take tank commanders over their heavy support counterparts. While the 10 point decrease for the HS Russ in the codex helped, I think more can be done. I’m attacking this from two different angles.
1. make the tank commander more about the orders rather than the bs upgrade
2. Give the heavy support tank access to the bs upgrade.
Now that RAW
say that tanks can order themselves, it seems kind of silly that a “Command Tank” will only order itself and be done with it. I think simply giving the tank commander (and Pask) one extra order and increasing the price of each by 10 points could do this.
On the other end of things, I would give heavy support Russes access to bs 3+. It could be either a veteran tank or some kind of targeter upgrade. (I think veteran make more sense) Since my previous suggestion would make it a 55 point upgrade to make a Russ into a commander, I think a bs 3+ upgrade would be on the order of 30-35 points.
So these changes in the end give a more expensive but a more “Commandery” tank commander, while also providing a greater incentive to take normal Leman Russes.
A lot of crap here so I thank anyone for reading through this.
Update December 2nd
So I decided to show some off the math behind the weapons profiles. I modified my graphs the I made a while back to show a much easier to read probability distribution.
A quick explanation of the images:
For each weapon, a simulation will go through the dice rolls for a shooting phase against the given target parameters. I save a vector for each step of the shooting phase. For my graphs, the simulation is run 100,000 times for each weapon. At the end, I total up the results to find how many time any given amount of damage is done.
I mentioned that I save the vector at every step of the shooting phase. Well, that data is used to make the first five columns in the data table. 99% of the time, when someone does the math the determine what a weapon can do, they will multiple the probabilities for each dice roll to find the average damage. This data basically shows the steps to that calculation except all the values are calculated empirically. It’s useful as a quick guide, and to check my work for the other data, as it will show that vast majority of my mistakes. (someone spotted one the last time I posted this stuff).
The last four columns are based on the graph. They simply show the likelihood of causing a given amount of wound. I find it the best when of quickly judging how strong a weapon is.
I decided to use the tank commander For the simulations. I could easily plus a normal Russ or Pask in, but I don't really want to make this a data dump like my last post ended up being. It is trivial to change any of these parameter if someone wants to see anything though. Just ask
A few notes:
*Grinding advance is assumed to be in effect for every run
*Although, a scatter plot would have shown all the data, I thought it looked easier to read when I connected the lines (which are themselves, meaningless).
*For the exterminator and the super charged executioner, it isn’t possible to get an odd numbered damage result so technically the plots should be jumping to zeros at all those points. That looked like crap, so I hard coded it no ignore the odd numbered results
*I used heavy 6 as the profile for the exterminator in my version
*The T3 and T4 runs used a squad size of 5 so the Demolisher Cannon get it’s better profile.
T4 2+ armor TEQ
T4 3+ 2 wound Primaris (PEQ ??? is that a thing)
T6 4+ armor
T7 3+ armor
T8 3+ armor
Some observations for my proposed balance changes:
* Like I originally claimed demolisher is certainly not worthy of being the most expensive weapon. There isn’t really anything wrong with the profile, but it could come down 5-10 points.
* Even with its overhaul, the eradicator is outclassed by the punisher. I think that this would be something that could be fixed with points. The eradicator can join the battle cannon as being the cheap option (but for a different job), while the punisher could be bumped 10 points and still be excellent.
* I think auto cannon is a bit of a funny weapon. It has good toughness and damage but bad armor penetration. Bumping it the heavy 6 however, does give it a place to shine. It can tear up light vehicles and can be rather good against Primaris marines (who could be showing up more after their recent buffs)
* The Vanquisher certainly has a good showing here. Useless against troops but deadly against the big stuff. Perhaps a bit too strong though. Particularly in its’s ability to do 15+ wounds. I may play around with the damage stat. Perhaps something like 3d3 could work
* The executioner cannon is very strong and would absolutely deserve to be the most expensive Russ. This thing is 45 points easy. There is however, another way of balancing it which I think would be better than putting it more than 45 points. Right now, a failed overcharge only gives the tank one mortal wound. Not a huge threat even with the increased number of shots that I’ve given it. I think simply changing it to 2 mortal wounds would be effective. We still have way to mitigate this effect, but I think it would be enough to make it an actual decision to overcharge.
If you spot anything that doesn’t look right, please point it out. I’ve made a lot of changes to the code to make it nice and easy to change parameters (even between my balance chances and the codex). It is possible that something could have slipped through the cracks when doing this and the idea that I would have posted incorrect data somewhere bugs the crap out of me.
Edited by Chris521, 14 December 2017 - 04:12 PM.