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 Post subject: First turn - crucial?
PostPosted: Fri Dec 01, 2017 1:34 pm 
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Its a single die roll at the beginning of the game but it so often makes the difference between victory and defeat, especially for armies with heavy shooting. Dealing that first blow is important, but so is each following turn of going before you opponent.

So.

Perhaps its worth breaking with the traditional "I go, you go" and mix things up like in Triumph and Treachery where the order is randomized each turn? This would add an additional random element each turn but perhaps it would be more fair in general?

Thoughts? Experiences?

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 01, 2017 7:35 pm 
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The problem I can see with this change is having to plan for effectively two enemy turns before you might get your next one. So you play but with 8th’s long charges for example, you have to factor in being potentially charged by a Star Dragon 42” away. Ouch!

Going first is definitely an advantage, I agree. I guess a counterbalance to this is that the player going second may well have more deployment drops, which may allow them to outdeploy their opponent.

I’m talking 8th edition though, in other systems things are different. LOTR uses this system doesn’t it?

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PostPosted: Sat Dec 02, 2017 5:47 pm 
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I guess that something that could be used is a command-based structure, when you want to activate a unit you test against their Leadership and if you pass you can use them, otherwise you have to wait.
Maybe allow for a maximum number of successful tests before you hand over the turn to your opponent, to represent that armies with multiple units are harder to organize (this prevents the case that you pass 10 tests in a row and you can move 10 units while your opponent does nothing).
Likewise, if you fail a number of tests you have to hand over control to the opponent (this represents communication breakdown).

Something would need to be included so that you can't attempt to use the same unit twice in a row, if they fail a test you need to give a number of orders to other units before you try again with the unit who failed.

I am thinking that perhaps this would make the game a bit unpredictable and low L armies would be screwed or overly dependent on the general and heroes leading the units.
Perhaps the champion could allow one re-roll of a failed test per battle and the musician another one.

I have to re-read the Warmaster rules but I think they use something similar, you need to activate units before using them with a test.

P.S. If you lose first turn roll as a gunline I have no empathy for you because you brought a gunline :twisted: .

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 8:33 am 
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It definitely can make a difference, but is it crucial? No, I think not.

Some armies are more vulnerable to not getting the first turn then others. VS a gunline it can make all the difference. But fast armies should be fast enough to adapt to a changing situation on the fly. Part of this means that you should design your army around the possibility that you don't get the first turn.

I view it a bit like in chess (though by no means do I think WH is anything like chess, not even close), where white has a slightly bigger chance of winning then black does, simply because they get 1 move earlier (which in chess usually is a lowly pawn). It gives white the momentum and as long as white can keep that momentum does it have the advantage of going first. Whole books have been written about how to maximize this advantage.

The same goes in WH. If you go first then the momentum is on your side. And you can push your opponent and force your mark on the game. If you succeed in doing this you have a good chance of winning the game. But it is fairly easily lost. Give your opponent some room somewhere and suddenly you're on the backfoot.

Still, many games that started after WH have different mechanics. AoS has the random mechanism you describe, with each player rolling to see who gets the first turn. A few other options exist as well. The main thing I think is that you need to consider what the different possibilities are and adapt the rules to match the overall game. The 42'' dragon charge is a clear example, but I'm sure there's more of them.

I've also thought about a system like elendor describes, where each player basically gets 1 action and then the other player can go. The issue here I think is that you want to prevent a player simply using his most powerful unit over and over again. But also you don't want to turn it into some complex bookkeeping exercise where you have to track which units have moved when and where you can only move the first unit after all the others have moved.

Rod

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PostPosted: Mon Dec 04, 2017 10:04 am 
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I guess you've talked me out of it :lol:

Fiddly, possibly even more unfair and makes planning ahead almost impossible. Sounds like something I'd write a scenario around. So stay tuned :wink:

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