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Playing With Myself: A 40K Solo Play and Solo Learn Experience

Playing With Myself: A 40K Solo Play and Solo Learn Experience

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Preparing For My First Game

Tutoring 3
Skill 2
Idea 5

Preparing The Models

I had a project log covering over here.  I’ve painted Orks, Tyranids, and now Space Wolves.  I’d have to say that GW seem to have designed their paint schemes and models around the concept of simplicity and repetitiveness.  To allow people to get 3 colours down simply and effectively if that’s all they want to do.  Take the Marines.  Spray blue.  Pick out the guns in iron and the eyes in red.  There’s your 3 colours with no effort.  If you’re happy with that then great.  You’re table ready.  This is great for getting new people to paint their first unit, but I find the uniformity across whole armies leads to tedium far quicker than in other systems.  I painted a Cryx army over a couple of months the other year and I did not get bored doing it.  Painting that may Space Wolves, or Tyranids, regardless of the models would bore me to death.  There doesn’t appear to be as much character or variation amongst GW models, at least from the ones I’ve worked with.  I know they do have some awesome, characterful models, but these seem to be the exception, not the rule.


Reading The Rules


The rules seemed like a quick and simple read, but I am someone who learns by doing so we will see how clear and helpful they are when I come to play and discover how little I remember.  I didn’t like that the actual rules don’t start until you are 170 pages in to the book.  I understand you need to set the scene and lure people in before getting to the work, but that struck me as excessive.  it was in the way.  This will become a problem whenever I need to reference pages while playing as I’m flicking backwards and forwards between different pages.

I read a little of the Space Wolf codex too.  I didn’t appreciate the first few pages of that.  The tone was all about how you can buy, built and paint an army.  There was no mention of playing the game.  It really made the book feel like a sales tool, rather than a games manual.  It didn’t endear me to GW at all.


Preparing Lists

Well, this was a huge frustration.  Stats in one section.  Weapons in another.  Points costs for each in two more sections.  Then throw in the codec’s and the Chapter Approved changes.  I tried using the GW army builder but then it doesn’t work in Points and I wanted to.  I also couldn’t find mention of Space Wolf Space Marines anywhere.  I had to go away and research what they were called, only to find out there’s 3 different types.  While I built my Tyranids, I did not build my Space Wolves.  Working out what I owned and if it was even legal was confusing and hard work.

I did build my Nids though.  I bought the old Start Collecting box with the Hive Tyrant and some Warriors.  I was advised to not worry and just build what I liked the look of.  I picked 3 different build options from the instructions for the Warriors and now I find out one of them is not a legal option.  Cheers GW.  Now I need to pull the arms off a model I painted and add new ones.  How often am I going to have to do things like this?  At least I wasn’t a Squat player back in the day, I suppose.

Battlescribe was a big help in setting up and pointing my lists correctly (I think), although I did have to know what everything was before hand, but I suppose that’s to be expected.  I printed out my lists before play so as not to be running two unfamiliar armies off of one screen.


Setting Up The Table

I’ll be starting at 500 points.  The book suggests a 4×4 table for this, and suggests 2 pieces of terrain on every 2×2 section.  No real talk of how big a piece is, or how much of it should block line of sight, or advice on breaking up lines of fire.  Should I be putting down 7-9 walls randomly, and having a mostly open table, giving guns a huge advantage, or lots of tall building to break up fire and give melee more of a chance?  Any time I’ve seen a 40K table it seems to have lots of gothic ruins on it so I opted for lots of buildings.  I have used my Deadzone Terrain, because it’s what I own.  What do people think of my layout?  Any advice for constructing fair and balanced table layouts?  Is this enough stuff?  Should I mix up the type more?

Preparing For My First Game

I’m using the suggested starting Scenario to begin with, “Only War” (p187).  it talks about using 4 objective markers “represented by any suitable marker or piece of terrain”.  I cannot find any definition anywhere of what that means.  All I can find is that you must be within 3″ of the centre of an objective to score it.  Is anything less than a 3″ diameter circle considered suitable, or are there rules or accepted conventions covering the size or shape?  I’ve opted to use my objective markers from Warmachine.  Standing Stones mounted on 50mm bases.


Deployment Zones

The game talks about splitting the table in half and allowing deployment anywhere on your half of the board up to 12″ away from the opposing deployment zone.  Fair enough.  Does this mean you could split the table in half in either direction?  I assume diagonally is out of the question unless specifically mentioned in a scenario?  What about on a 6×4 table?  I always assumed you played along the long edge.  If you split the table so people are at the 4 foot ends and deply 12″ from the middle then what’s the point in the extra 2 foot, and surely people will have issues reaching their models if you don’t have 360 degree aces to the table?

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Very nice idea overall. 8th is a lot of fun, I’m sure your group will change their mind eventually. Personal opinion, this is my favourite edition so far!

I agree that it’s rather bothersome to have the rules after the lore. I’d prefered a system like the one Corvus Belli uses: one book full of lore, and one with only the rules. Maybe in the future, who knows.
I have my rulesets and codex in digital format, and I have cut out digitally all the innecesary parts. That might be an option too.

Battlescribe is a great and powerful tool. I don’t personally bother looking at the costs in any of the books.
Battlescribe all the way. It’s just too convenient.

Your setup is rather nice, maybe too crowded towards the center. In this edition deep strike is very powerful so haveing some terrain in the deployment zones is nice and helps. Other than that, I think yuo have enough terrain for an interesting table.

I think markers might be 28mm diameter? Something mounted into a regular circular base does the trick for me. Maybe looking for some tournament standard measures might be useful.

And yes, in this setup (as it’s a square) you can set the deployment zones in any opposite sides. You have in the rulebook a section about different deployment zones and diagonally is one of the options. There you will have the measures and rules for each one of them.

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