Tanks are a waste of resources

Raven Morpheus

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Nov 19, 2017
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Had a 1500pt game of 40k 9th edition at my gaming buddy's house recently and came to a conclusion.

He was 9th edition Admech, I was 8th edition Chaos (Khorne CSM and Daemons). He had a couple of the transports, and a couple of their tanks. I had a Defiler and a Land Raider.

The terrain we put down looked similar to that in the photo below.

IMG-20210624-124052876-HDR.jpg




The conclusion I came to is that vehicles like the Land Raider, or the Admech transports/tanks are pretty much useless in a 1500 point game on a 4' x 4' board with a decent amount of terrain on it - all 3 tanks sat in their deployment positions and did very little, whilst the transports only made 1 forward move all game. They eat up a lot of points and don't do much in the way of removing models. Things like a Defiler are a bit more useful as they can crawl over terrain, but I found mine didn't do a lot either, it just got shot down by the over the top Admech shooting from troops before it even got into melee. They (tanks) also don't work as soaks for shooting/close combat because they just get ignored.

Convince me otherwise.
 
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The_steve

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Aug 18, 2021
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I cannot convince you otherwise, they are garbage. esp with FLYING TANKS like repulsors.
 

The_steve

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Aug 18, 2021
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kinda feel like tanks should either have invuls or s to t should have hard limits, as in after a certain number gap they just cannot hurt a tank requiring people take tank buster specific gear like kraks.
 

Gunkaiser

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It's more like there's too many high Damage weapons in the game. You don't need tank busting weapons when you can hurt them with just artificer storm bolters and that's without getting to real anti-tank squads.
 
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The_steve

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isn't that an SOB thing? maybe gw is going crazy with the sales based balance gimmick. next thing you know primaris bolters will effectively by Krakmissiles rapid 2
 

Gunkaiser

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Well they did give Templars D2 flamers for about ten minutes. But T7 and D+anything weapons mean most armor is getting wounded about thirty percent of the time, and that's a problem.
 
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Jan 12, 2021
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kinda feel like tanks should either have invuls or s to t should have hard limits, as in after a certain number gap they just cannot hurt a tank requiring people take tank buster specific gear like kraks.

The trials and tribulations of GW "streamlining" the game by having everything use the same datasheet template, really.

I'm not sure how long you've been playing 40k, but I still have fond memories of the Armour Value system used in 7th Edition (and still used in Horus Heresy today), that functioned not too differently from what you're suggesting here.

Back then, apart from walkers, vehicles typically only had 3 characteristics: Ballistic Skill, Hull Points (similar function as wounds), and Armour Value, the last being broken down into three facings (front, side, rear). Kind of think of AV as a composite of Toughness and Armour Save with a directional component, ranging in value between 10 and 14.

Suffice to say that damaging a vehicle back then required rolling at least equal the given AV in an Armour Penetration roll (dice roll + weapon strength), and that beating the AV by 1 or more (a penetrating shot) meant potentially causing more damage to the vehicle in question (even blowing it up outright if you're lucky). While this still meant that bolters (S4) and pulse weapons (S5) could feasibly still glance AV10 (i.e. most rear armour values, light vehicles, etc) to death after a significant number of shots, chances are that you more than likely had better targets to shoot with those weapons to begin with. Conversely, you couldn't even glance AV14 (Land Raiders and Monoliths come to mind) with anything less than S8 without special rules like Armourbane or Melta (both of which allowing you to roll 2d6 for armour penetration rather than 1d6 within their respective criteria), or Haywire (which granted an additional chance to damage vehicles on a d6 even if the initial hit didn't glance or penetrate).

Whilst it probably wouldn't be a perfect fit, and my local gaming group doesn't house rule anything for 40k, one of my buddies there has repeatedly stated their opinion of adapting the directional facing mechanic mentioned earlier into a toughness modifier: +2 Toughness against attacks made within the front arc and +1 within the side arcs. While this would require clear demarcation to determine what consistutes what arc, since very few vehicles have footprints the shape of perfect squares (nevermind that the Monolith is probably also one of the few exceptions that didn't and still shouldn't care about facing), you'll likely see more in the way of vehicle orientation again as players do their best to ensure that opponents have a hard time flanking them for more effective kill shots.

With that said, in doing so, there'd likely be a handful of anti-tank weapons that'd need further tweaking to retain that classification, particularly those that used to have Melta or Armourbane special rules in 7th Ed and earlier (maybe +1 to wound units with the VEHICLE keyword, with the former being more specific to within half range).
 
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Wasteland

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Uhm, walkers since 3rd like SM, Ork & CSM Dreadnoughts had also an AV system. Only Eldar didn't because... space elves needed a unit which didn't fold when hit by a stiff breeze.

Though Eldar Dreadnoughts were proper vehicles in 2nd.


Setting up the table:
When you use large vehicles in a game you should make sure to have routes for them so that they don't have to always move into terrain when trying to get from A to B. Use streets in a Cityfight.

Or you say from the beginning that the battle takes place in dense vegetation like on a Deathworld (e. g. Catachan). People would then refrain from bringing transports as only walkers could navigate through the forests with ease.
 
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Jan 12, 2021
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Uhm, walkers since 3rd like SM, Ork & CSM Dreadnoughts had also an AV system. Only Eldar didn't because... space elves needed a unit which didn't fold when hit by a stiff breeze.

Though Eldar Dreadnoughts were proper vehicles in 2nd.
I admittedly didn't want to obfuscate explaining the AV system with going off on a tangent on walkers also having Weapon Skill, Strength, and Attack in addition to the usual vehicle stats, but you're right.
Setting up the table:
When you use large vehicles in a game you should make sure to have routes for them so that they don't have to always move into terrain when trying to get from A to B. Use streets in a Cityfight.

Or you say from the beginning that the battle takes place in dense vegetation like on a Deathworld (e. g. Catachan). People would then refrain from bringing transports as only walkers could navigate through the forests with ease.
A thing I picked up while playing Horus Heresy is that on Cityfight tables you generally want the main thoroughfares to be about 7" wide - enough to accommodate a Land Raider or Spartan - while unobstructed side paths ought to be about 4" wide to accommodate Rhinos. Then again, Rhinos being dirt cheap in Horus Heresy for what they can bring to the table kind of cemented them as the transport of choice in any Legiones Astartes army that wasn't going Angel's Wrath (jump packs for days!), Pride of the Legion (because terminators can't use Rhinos), or legion-spacific variants of either Rite of War.
 
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The problem is that you were playing 9th edition. :p

I haven't played 9th edition, and the more I hear about it, the more I don't want to. The rules for vehicles are apparently broken as hell, making them worthless. But then the power creep problem in 9th edition means everything except the current codex is worthless. Everything keeps getting buffed, which really just means nothing is getting buffed.

That being said, reading your post reminded me of my early days in 2nd edition, where people would plant high point models behind or inside cover in the deployment zones and never move them out of fear, or of a friend of mine playing Eldar and doing the same in every edition of the game because he was scared of losing his tanks. If you're parking your tanks and doing nothing with them, then they are useless. But they are useless because you aren't using them. More than being heavy weapons or transports, tanks can be used to intercept fire or grief your opponent. Even if they aren't super dangerous, your opponent needs to decide if they ignore the tanks and continue to endure their nonsense, or to deal with them and draw fire away from other targets. I'm told that some of this doesn't work in 9th edition because cover and line of sight are apparently not a thing anymore, but they still have a use.
 

Wasteland

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I am reading those posts regarding 9th on Dakka Dakka every week. Bad rules make the battlefield a hellhole in which everything is either dies quickly or kills large amount of stuff. Due to this development many people consider going back (GASP!) to older editions. Though I am not affected as I am playing custom house rules of either 2nd or 3rd-6th at home. :)
 

The_steve

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Aug 18, 2021
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I am reading those posts regarding 9th on Dakka Dakka every week. Bad rules make the battlefield a hellhole in which everything is either dies quickly or kills large amount of stuff. Due to this development many people consider going back (GASP!) to older editions. Though I am not affected as I am playing custom house rules of either 2nd or 3rd-6th at home. :)
Id be ok with that. I hate primaris
 
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A bit of mathhammer here, but this might be a more viable solution compared to what I stated earlier.

Just within the framework of what's presently available, and assuming that we're looking at the old AV system for determining the lowest weapon strength capable of glancing hits (specifically, on a 6+) for inspiration:

AV 10 (Min S 4) -> ~T 8
AV 11 (Min S 5) -> ~T 10
AV 12 (Min S 6) -> ~T 12
AV 13 (Min S 7) -> ~T 14
AV 14 (Min S 8) -> ~T 16

Granted, this is just a ballpark estimate that can be influenced by other factors, such as the nature of the vehicle in question. Open-Topped and unarmoured vehicles may have slightly lower toughness than implied here (indeed, the IG sentinel represents a good low end of this scale without making any modifications), while up-armoured vehicles (i.e. via flare shields, extra armour, etc) may be higher.

Personally, I'd also consider having the new toughness value correspond with what used to be the side AV for a given vehicle, or at least an overall average. If facing ever makes a return to the game, it could be reasonably implemented as a +/-1 Toughness modifier when an enemy attempts to wound a given vehicle when in its rear or front arc respectively.

Since vehicles now have armour saves (most of which being 3+) we'd now have to account for the probability of those same minimum strength weapons being able to damage the previous armour values with the same probability. Generally assuming that the 3+ is a permanent fixture here without modifiers, achieving the equivalent of damaging a vehicle on a 6+ would require wounding the vehicle on a 4+ before saves (i.e. S = T). This in itself presents a problem since under the current system you'd now have armoured vehicles that were no tougher than a space marine and that can be shot to hell even more by low-strength weapons like lasguns, so this won't do. Not only that, but it's already dangerously close to what's already implemented in a game where everything has a chance to wound regardless of strength. Taking into account the effect of AP weapons in the game however, you get a spread more akin to this for the same probability:

AV 10 (Min S 4) -> ~T 7-8
AV 11 (Min S 5) -> ~T 9-10
AV 12 (Min S 6) -> ~T 11-12
AV 13 (Min S 7) -> ~T 13-14
AV 14 (Min S 8) -> ~T 15-16

This shouldn't be out of the realm of possibility in a game where weapon strength is no longer limited to a 1-10 scale. If a neutron laser can have Strength 12, surely a vehicle or monster can have a toughness greater than 10.

Like I said earlier however, we can't just focus on the vehicles alone since, just like how many armies have access to vehicles, so too do many armies have access to anti-vehicle weaponry of some kind. I don't know what it is about GW's design philosophy to try implementing damage bonuses wherever possible whenever it comes to these weapons, but the abstract doesn't really match what's happening on the table when it comes to vehicles, especially for weapons that are purposefully designed to defeat armour in more than just an abstract notion of AP without having to increase damage yield. Being able to roll 2d6 for armour penetration against AV back in 7th was damn powerful, and the simplest way to implement that in the current system is actually to give such weapons a bonus to wound against units with the MONSTER or VEHICLE keyword, and let their current AP modifiers do the rest of the legwork.