Tips Tricks and Tactics! Tank Shocking Made Easy

Hey, hey! We’re back with a Tips, Tricks and Tactics video! This time, Tank Shock in 7th ed! Let us know if your group plays it this way or not. Also, what other sneaky tricks can you pull off with tank shocking? Be sure to check out the Tactics Corner for more great videos!


About Reecius

The fearless leader of the intrepid group of gamers gone retailers at Frontline Gaming!

55 Responses to “Tips Tricks and Tactics! Tank Shocking Made Easy”

  1. rgMarkon November 7, 2015 12:30 pm #

    Great video.. the only example that seemed a bit weird was the MC one.. at least for me.. i get what you are trying to say… its just i dunno… I would think stepping to the side would be equal distance as stepping back into the rhino in order to be 1″ away…

    I’d probably use more vehicles to do the tank shock in order to not have that discussion with my opponent lol…

    Also probably a stupid question but i assume having normal units instead of a rhino in the back/ being in a ring around targeted enemy would have the same effect? So if an enemy is tank shocked into the middle of a friendly unit they are destroyed?

    • Reecius November 7, 2015 3:37 pm #

      You set it up so that the shortest distance is straight back for the MC so it must move into a position where it dies. It will smash though, every time, to try and stop the tank.

      Yes, definitely have the discussion with your opponent, first!

      Yes, any models can do it, but only a vehicle that is a tank or has some special rule allowing it to do so, can tank shock.

      • bridges60 November 8, 2015 8:53 am #

        I did this once with a raider spam verse an biker nob lol

      • CaptainA November 8, 2015 12:52 pm #

        I don’t know from the video that the MC would actually die as it seems from measuring that it easily could go left or right the “same” or shorter distance to survive. One counter tactic would be to let them move, ask if that is their movement, then measure to see if it could go another direction and still survive.

        • Reecius November 9, 2015 5:26 pm #

          You can move to just barely touch the MC, forcing it straight back.

  2. NOPE November 7, 2015 1:37 pm #

    I was thinking the same thing about the MC
    Plan on keeping this video so I can show it to the store TO
    before the tournaments, cause I’m sure this will cause major

    Love the video guys. Think stuff like this really helps the
    new players out a lot!

    • Reecius November 7, 2015 3:37 pm #

      Yeah, best to let people know this in adavnce to avoid hurt feelings for sure.

  3. FL5 November 7, 2015 1:50 pm #

    No credit to Travis from TFG radio for using his tutorial nearly verbatim?

    • Reecius November 7, 2015 3:40 pm #

      Sure, credit to Travis. We were planning on doing this video anyway, but he was kind enough to offer his outline and we used it as the story board.

  4. happy_inquisitor November 7, 2015 2:27 pm #

    Great video. I always interpreted that rule differently as
    “you must make the shortest move that also puts you at least 1″ away from any enemy model and in unit coherence”
    which made it much harder to ever crunch anyone. Being able to do it so relatively easily is a beast.

    • Reecius November 7, 2015 3:39 pm #

      Yeah, you can totally read it that way. But, if you read the sentence, the first clause is “must move the shortest distance” then the other statements tell you what happens after the model is moved.

    • Codi November 7, 2015 10:43 pm #

      Crunch would not be possible under that reading.

      • Happy_inquisitor November 8, 2015 12:38 am #

        It is possible. You need to put them out of unit coherence by tank shocking with a backstop so they cannot span the gap in their unit that you make with your tank. It only really works on a unit that has strung out preparing to multi charge your whole army.
        This interpretation is much more powerful and I am cool with that but I fear the game would descend into a feel-bad rule hammer session if I ever try it.

        • Reecius November 9, 2015 5:27 pm #

          That is a very real possibility, and something to discuss with your opponent beforehand.

  5. Papucs November 7, 2015 4:28 pm #

    Yer to what happy_inquisitor said. We had a monster argument about this at my gaming group about two years ago and the guy on the sore side of it never came back, which is sad. Our interpretation was that the move must be legal (i.e. keep you 1″ away and in unit coherence), which makes it extremely difficult to crunch people without ringing them in first, which is extremely hard. Our view was that otherwise tank shock basically breaks the game, which we would doubtless affirm now that battle company brings 6+ razorbacks for free. That said, I feel like being able to surround transports before you wreck them with krak/haywire grenades (Note that Hawks move 18″ then charge 6″ on average – hard to avoid getting surrounded by them without making your transports redundant) and thereby kill everyone inside also breaks the game and nobody in my group seems to mind that one much. Probably because they’re sneaky xeno gits.

    P.S. “lol, Rhinos…#unimpressed” was comic genius.

    • Papucs November 7, 2015 4:28 pm #

      Also, this was a great video! Please do more of this sort of stuff.

      • Reecius November 9, 2015 5:28 pm #

        We will make more for sure!

  6. Stilgar November 7, 2015 5:40 pm #

    Great video! Very slick. Thanks for doing it. I’m looking forward to more tactics videos.

  7. Lord Krungharr November 7, 2015 5:51 pm #

    Awesome tips! I am starting construction of a custom Chaos Spartan and I will certainly be trying this stuff out if possible. I could see a combo of Drop Pods and other Imperial tanks doing similar things. The Drop Pod walls could circle behind a scouting deathstar or fleshhound star and then the tanks easily come in for the CRUNCH. And Fearless units can’t fail Morale checks right? So that could hurt to have Fearless.

  8. Speedy Osvald November 7, 2015 7:13 pm #

    Interesting video!
    So let’s say that you tank shock an enemy unit that is positioned in 2 rows of 5 models each, and you place your tank on top of the first row, then, assuming that the unit passes their morale check, the first row of models would have to back up on top of the second row and therefor get crunched against themselves…?

  9. amnesiaditit November 7, 2015 10:00 pm #

    Man! I just played a highlander tournament today and I was seriously thinking that in one instance I wanted to tank shock but because I wasnt totally clear on how it worked in 7th I skipped it :/

    Eh my poor chaos would have lost anyways but still good to know!

  10. col_impact November 7, 2015 11:08 pm #

    This tactic seems to be totally against the rules though.

    This rule is in effect:

    “Models in the Way:
    A model cannot move within 1″ of an enemy model unless they are charging into close
    combat in the Assault phase, and can never move or pivot (see below) through another
    model (friend or foe) at any time. To move past, they must go around.”

    So the Models in the Way rule generally restricts the models from moving into the blocking tank (“at any time”) and Tank Shock doesn’t provide specific permission for the models to move into the blocking Tank.

    • tag8833 November 8, 2015 12:34 am #

      Yep. That isn’t how the rules work.

      Read the rule again. “If some enemy models in the enemy unit would end up underneath the vehicle when it reaches its final position (It makes no difference whether the unit is falling back or not), those models must be moved out o fthe way by the shortest distance, leaving at least 1″ between them and the vehicle WHILST MAINTAINING UNIT COHERENCY AND STAYING ON THE BOARD. Any models that cannot manage this are crushed and removed from play as casualties with no saves allowed. Crunch!.”

      That means sometimes you have to mover farther to follow the second part of clause. In addition it doesn’t give you permission to violate rules of normal movement, so you can’t move within 1″ of enemy models as Col_Impact points out.

      Your version of Tank Shock in addition to being incorrect when it comes to RAW is so insanely powerful that it would fundamentally change how the game is played. If you are attempting to make a RAI interpretation that violates a clear RAW interpretation it would probably be best to avoid interpretations that fundamentally alter game mechanics as much as this one does.

      Also if you are trying to make an argument that RAI trumps RAW in this situation, I would like to hear a bit of support for why that would be the case.

      • tag8833 November 8, 2015 12:36 am #

        Just to be clear, even though I think you got this rule very, very wrong. I appreciate the attempt, and I hope that this mistake doesn’t discourage you from making these sorts of videos in the future.

      • xTHExCLINCHERx November 9, 2015 10:01 am #

        First of all, I think the video was very well orchestrated, and I’d love to see some more of these. However, (just giving constructive criticism here) I see no way the normal rules for movement would allow you to place your model on someone else’s, which was the crux of how the videos portrayed this rule playing out.

        From the BRB:
        “…those models must be moved out of the way by the shortest distance, leaving at least 1″ between them and the vehicle…”

        For that part of the rule, you don’t have the option of moving onto an enemy rhino behind you because you can’t ever do that… so your only viable place to move, is to the side of the rhino. Now that you have identified where you are legally allowed to move, you pick the shortest direction, and carry out the rest. I think that was the biggest thing that debunks killing a MC with a pair of Rhinos here. It’s the same thing if you have the MC up against the board edge… he can’t voluntarily just move off the edge, so that’s not even a possible option. if you surrounded him with 3 rhinos, backed in a corner, then sure… he dies because there are no viable options for movement at all. Anyway, seems there will always be a debate about this, but thanks for the video anyway!

        I would definitely like to see some more of these tactics videos though, and the production quality you’ve got now is going up and it’s awesome, so keep it up!

      • Reecius November 9, 2015 5:31 pm #

        That’s the rub of it though, the rules do give you information for how to handle what to do if you can’t be placed 1″ away from the tank: crunch. If you follow the steps, RAW indicated you move away the shortest distance, if you cannot be placed in unit coherency or on the table, you get crunched.

        You can read it both ways. The comma is what goofs it all up, it makes the first sentence an independent clause.

        • tag8833 November 10, 2015 12:24 am #

          So your argument is that the independent clause created by the comma means that the text that follows the comma is to be ignored until after the text before the comma is executed in full.

          Let’s break that down and see where it leads.

          Before the comma: “those models must be moved out of the way by the shortest distance”

          After the comma: “leaving at least 1″ between them and the vehicle whilst maintaining unit coherency and staying on the board”

          Furthermore you contend that the normal rules for movement are ignored (such as not moving within 1″ of an enemy model).

          By this logic every model that would end up under the Tank at the end of its movement would be removed as a casualty in every situation. Why? Because we are ignoring the rules for normal movement that they must stay 1″ away from enemy models. Furthermore we are ignoring the text after the comma when conducting the movement that states that they must move 1″ away from the vehicle. Therefore they are moved by the shortest possible distance (0″), and then removed as a casualty because they are not 1″ away from the vehicle.

          But that isn’t the rules interpretation you are making. You are saying ignore normal rules for movement, plus selectively ignoring some of the text after the Comma. Explain to me why we ignore some of that text, but not all of it?

          • Speedy Osvald November 11, 2015 2:04 pm

            That’s not how it works…at all, actually. Nowhere in the rules does it say somthing in line with “this move ignores the normal rules of movement” as you describe it. The rules for movement is actually not completely relevant as the models that get removed never really move.

            What really happens is the model is forced to move the shortest distance that would leave it 1″ away from the tank. If that is not possible, maybe because that spot is already occupied by another model, be it friend or foe, then the model is removed. It never actually moves, and therefor don’t ignore any rules of movement!

            When a model is tank shocked (and passes the morale check), it either moves out of the way via the shortest route, or dies if it’s unable to. It really is that simple.

  11. FrequentRespawn November 8, 2015 1:20 am #

    great video, thanks for that!
    I still got several question though, mostly about shocking with 1 tank.
    So, what happens if you tankshock into a unit and the tank movement ends on several models of which their shortest way out would be a spot that is already obtained by another member of the unit? do you move the models that are not under the tank and therefore not involved in the shock as well? Or do you take the tankshocked models of the table since they can’t get away?
    This is a very important clause since their are lots of ways then to kill characters attached to specific units by using only one tank.

  12. Mike November 8, 2015 2:16 am #

    I believe your rules interpretation is incorrect. The way I read it in the English 7e big rule book is that they must move the shortest distance that is still legal and coherent, and they only get crunched if that isn’t possible.

    However there are some tank shock questions that didn’t get answered here:
    1. How do you tank shock with a squadron of say…3 tanks? One at a time? All at once? Does the unit take one morale test or three? How many death or glory attempts can they make? If they stun a tank does the entire squadron stop? If they don’t, what happens when the remaining tanks end up leaving a stunned unit member out of squadron coherency?

    2. What happens if you declare a final position for a tank shock that is within 1″ of an enemy non-vehicle model, but not OVER it? Does the model still need to budge out to 1″ away despite no rule telling it to? Is the tank not allowed to declare that position? Do you just leave the models in each others’ personal space?

    3. If a unit of two models is forcibly split up by a tank shock, which one is crunched for being out of coherency?

    4. When a unit is moving out from under a tank’s final position, do you make ALL model moves before checking the legality and crunchiness, or do you check for deaths as each model moves?

    I think they really need to work on the tank shock rules.

    • Speedy Osvald November 8, 2015 5:54 am #

      I can definitely see your point here, but wouldn’t this mean that a model would never get crunched, as it is always legal to move through the tank and land at the back side of it?

      Maybe i got something wrong, and please tell me if i did, but let’s imagine a group of happy orks in the back of an alley consisting of three impassable walls of some sort, just wide enough to fit a land raider. So when said land raider then tank shocks the orks, since they cant move backwards, nor to the sides legaly, the only way left is to move right through the land raider and end up behind it, since that is the SHORTEST and LEGAL way, also effectively making them immune to getting crunched.

      • Mike November 8, 2015 6:00 am #

        You are only told to move the specific models that would be under the tank’s final position, and you’re not given permission to move any others.

        So what you do with that is half-surround a unit’s rear model, (drop pod squads work great for this, or just other tanks,) then tank shock covering the rest of the unit but NOT the rear model that you have half-surrounded. There won’t be any way for the others to get in coherency without standing within 1″ of your guys/tanks, so deaths.

      • Mike November 8, 2015 6:03 am #

        And in your alley-way scenario, you would just shock all the way to the 2nd to last guy. Assuming he doesn’t have a good death or glory, everyone but the rear guy is pancaked.

      • tag8833 November 8, 2015 7:15 am #

        Mike is right. It is very powerful if you surround a unit and then Tank shock it such that not all models are under the final position of the tank that is doing the tank shocking. Only models that would end up under the enemy tank are allowed to move, and if there is no place that they can legally move and maintain coherence they get Crunched.

        You can crunch an entire unit, but it is really, really hard. The easiest way to do this is to bring on a Tank from reserves and use the board edge. If you have a unit next to the edge of the board that is already boxed in, and a tank comes in from that board edge and tank shocks the unit, there is no way to move legally, and thus the unit is crunched.

        Another way to crunch an entire unit is with a skimmer Tank. If you completely surround a unit on all 4 sides, and then Tank shock it with a Skimmer which can move over your own models legally, then the entire unit may be left with no place to move legally, and may be crunched.

        Tank shock if you play it as RAW is super-powerful. The Frontline Gaming video above does not play it as RAW. They seem to be changing RAW in favor of some sort of RAI interpretation that doesn’t really make any sense to me. I’m hoping that they will explain why they are ignoring RAW in this case. Perhaps it was just a mistake. Everyone makes mistakes. But if they are trying to make a change to RAW they need to explain it more.

        • Speedy Osvald November 8, 2015 7:52 am #

          Good point, but i don’t agree that they are ignoring the RAW, i just think that there are two very different, and in my opinion about equally valid, ways of reading the rule

      • Reecius November 9, 2015 5:36 pm #

        Yeah, that’s the thing, the rules of Tank Shock actually do tell you how to handle it, it’s just really powerful.

  13. chad November 8, 2015 3:52 am #

    The models move the shortest distance possible whilst maintaining unit coherency. It says so right in the tank shock rule. The video is incorrect. Keywords here are, whilst maintaining unit coherency. Check the rule again.

    • Reecius November 9, 2015 5:37 pm #

      Ah, but Chad, there is a comma in the sentence. I know it is getting ultra technical, but that separates two clauses. The first clause: you have to move the shortest possible distance. Clause two (after the comma): you have to stay on the table and in unit coherency.

      I can see 100% how you read the two things happening at the same time, but that is not necessarily the case.

  14. Wurrkop November 8, 2015 9:58 am #

    I gotta chime in and say that the way Mike and tag8833 are reading this is also the way my group, the store ive been to a couple of times and the two other gaming groups groups ive had dealings with play.

    • Reecius November 9, 2015 5:37 pm #

      Totally see how folks can read it that way.

  15. Jason November 8, 2015 3:49 pm #

    You should also consider using a bike screen or something like that to get behind your opponent to block off escape.

    What we often do is tank shock everyone where everyone has to move away from a single model in the squad (who hasn’t been forced to move) – and thus everyone is automatically out of coherency.

    • Reecius November 9, 2015 5:38 pm #

      They wouldn’t be out of coherency with one another, though.

  16. Ibushi November 8, 2015 6:19 pm #

    Great video, thanks FLG!

    Seems like there is some contention about how the rule is played, which looks like it boils down to whether models or units can come out the “back side” of a tank that is shocking them, i.e. moving through the tank itself and pop out the other side.

    Previously I assumed this was the case, so if you tank shock an MC, he can pretty much always escape by popping out whichever side of the tank has a space for him to be 1″ away from enemy models.

    Reading the BRB again, there is definitely a comma after “moved out of the way by the shortest distance,” indicating the first step is to move the shortest distance away from the tank in question, and THEN you assess whether you are 1″ away from enemy models and/or out of unit coherency, which can result in a CRUNCH! This means MCs would not be virtually immune to tank shocks, as you can just tank shock a tiny bit of their base so that the “shortest distance” must be straight backwards (which you have blocked with another unit), and they are not able to just pop out the side or back of the tank.

    The wording of course could be clearer, but it does not say “move the shortest distance possible WHILST maintaining 1″ away from enemy models and unit coherency”.

    Even so, the most important thing is each gaming store or event have a clear way of playing, and I am 110% happy to play by whatever ruling that is, even if I don’t agree.

    Really enjoyed this video and discussion. The comments add a lot of food for thought, we have a great 40k community on here — keep it up everyone!

    • Reecius November 9, 2015 5:39 pm #

      You said it better than I did, Ibushi!

    • tag8833 November 10, 2015 12:35 am #

      One notable problem with this interpretation is that the models move before the Tank is on top of them. You are assuming that the tank moves 1st which is not correct.

      The order of operations goes like this:
      1) Pivot the Tank (cannot be done if models are in the way)
      2) Declare the distance the tank will move.
      3) Move the tank to the 1st enemy unit that isn’t a vehicle in its path.
      4) Enemy unit takes a moral test and either falls back or doesn’t. (Death or Glory happens here)
      5) Repeat Step 4 until all enemy units that will be Tank Shocked have taken Moral tests.
      5) Check to see if any enemy models will be under the tank’s final position. If so move those models following the guidelines outlined. (Crunch happens here)
      6) Place the Tank in its final position.

      Since Step 5 Occurs before Step 6 there is no need to move “Through” the tank.

      • abusepuppy November 10, 2015 1:49 am #

        >1) Pivot the Tank (cannot be done if models are in the way)

        Not true. Pivoting ALONE is not enough to qualify as a Tank Shock, but the rulebook specifically allows you to pivot even if surrounded by nonvehicle models.

        Also, you do actually move the tank prior to Step 5- you just don’t check which models are underneath it at that time. (Note that the Tank Shock rules _explicitly_ say that the vehicle moves during the process of Tank Shocking, and indeed it is possible to Tank Shock a unit more than once with the same vehicle, depending on how its fallback moves pan out.)

        • tag8833 November 10, 2015 6:25 am #

          >Not true. Pivoting ALONE is not enough to qualify as a Tank Shock, but the >rulebook specifically allows you to pivot even if surrounded by nonvehicle >models.
          This could be possible. I’m not seeing where that provision is. All I see about that is that Tank Shock gives you permission to move within 1″ of enemy modes, and “Pivoting on the Spot does not count as moving, This is not enough for a Tank Shock”. So I concluded that you could not move within 1″ of Enemy models when Pivoting. Please give me a page and section to find the rule you are referring to.

          >Also, you do actually move the tank prior to Step 5- you just don’t check >which models are underneath it at that time.
          That is correct. You move the tank at Step 3 (which can happen multiple times), and at Step 6. However the only movement that can produce a crunch happens at Step 6, and that happens AFTER the models are move out of where the Tank will be placed.

  17. tag8833 November 8, 2015 6:42 pm #

    This video inspired an awesome Dakka Thread. Check this post for a full explanation of Tank Shock with Diagrams and images:

  18. chad November 10, 2015 3:21 am #

    Reece, there’s no other way to read it. The comma is punctuation showing that these two criteria must be met. Not just the first. It’s literally the same sentence.

  19. chad November 10, 2015 3:47 am #

    Look up the definition of whilst. I think that’ll clear things up.

  20. 1PlusArmour November 11, 2015 11:42 am #

    The wording from the BRB is:

    “Some enemy models in the enemy unit would end up underneath the vehicle when it reaches its final position (it makes no difference whether the unit is Falling Back or not), these models must be moved out of the way by the shortest distance, leaving at least 1″ between them and the vehicle whilst maintaining unit coherency and staying on the board.”

    The final clause (“… leaving at least 1″…”) is a qualifier for how the previous clause (“… must be moved out of the way…”) must be performed. If this were not the case, it would be two completely separate statements, instead of a directive and a qualifying statement.

    For your interpretation to be correct, it would need to read as “… models must be moved out of the way by the shortest distance. Any model that is left out of coherency or within 1″ of the vehicle is removed from play.” Your interpretation also directly contradicts an explicit rule that is mentioned elsewhere of “A model cannot move within 1″ of an enemy model unless they are charging into close combat in the Assault phase, and can never move or pivot (see below) through another model (friend or foe) at any time. To move past, they must go around.”, and there is nothing in the Tank Shock rule that grants an exception to this.

    When you combine these (even with your interpretation of Tank Shock), a unit cannot possibly be killed in the demonstrated scenarios as the movement that would force them into a “Crunch!” situation would not be a legal move, and thus would not be “possible”.

    Effectively, the only scenario where “Crunch!” is possible, is if you are tank shocking a unit, and the shortest legal move would keep them within 1″ of the vehicle due to impassible terrain. Incidentally, this is also the only way that this rule makes sense (RAW or RAI).

  21. chad November 11, 2015 4:56 pm #

    Whilst(as well as). It’s actually one of the clearer rules in 40k. I can’t believe it’s gone this far.absurd. Reeces’ interpretation literally breaks the English language.

  22. MVBrandt November 16, 2015 1:20 pm #

    It would be awesome if it worked this way. Good video format.

  23. Chris July 20, 2016 7:56 am #

    I was wondering how this would work against Jet Bikes as they can fly over one’s tank shock cordon? I am seeing that a Warlock death star evading this tactic.

    BTW, I have also been using both infantry and vehicles to create my cordon. Deep strikers don’t stand a chance.

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