Signals from the Frontline #582: Daughters of Khaine on the Way!

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Show Notes

Date: 2-21-18


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  • We’ve had a lot of interest in when SoCal Open registration will open over at the SoCal Open Facebook Page (which you should join if you want to participate!) so we wanted to let everyone know registration will open on Monday, March 12th. Last year was mega popular and while we have loads of space, we do anticipate it to fill pretty quickly so please mark your calendar and snag a ticket early if you want to go. Per usual, the tickets are fully refundable up until 30 days before the event, so if you change your mind not a huge deal. The event is the weekend before Halloween.

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  • If you plan on attending the BAO 2018, be sure to join the BAO Facebook Page which has been brought back from the dead! It’s a great way to ask questions about the event, talk to other attendees, etc. Plus, there’s some funny pictures on it from the early days of the BAO.

  • GW has previewed a new 40K game: Mechanicus in which you take control of a team of AdMech units that you augment with various upgrades and such to complete missions.

  • The new Daughters of Khaine for AoS look absolutely awesome!

  • We’ve also been further discussing the options for dealing with slow play and the answer we keep coming back to is Chess Clocks. They’re just the most fair way to deal with things. But, if you don’t mind answering this question, would you want to use a Chess Clock in normal tournament games and do you consider yourself to be very competitive or more casual/competitive? For games to determine the finals or on stream we don’t think their’s another viable option, but what about for normal tournament play?

Upcoming ITC Events

Upcoming 40K ITC Events

Upcoming AoS ITC Events

2018 40k ITC Standgins

1 Gary Frank 207.1 2 of 5
2 Jeremy Applebaum 201.79 2 of 5
3 Patrick McAneeny 173.81 2 of 5
4 Calin Radulescu 167.07 2 of 5
5 tyler white 135 2 of 5
6 Sean Nayden 119.46 1 of 5
7 James Koons 117.37 1 of 5
8 Dale Oser 116.67 1 of 5
9 Mitchell Pelham 115.98 1 of 5
10 David Ozawa 115.63 1 of 5

2018 AoS ITC Standings

1 Steven Hyche 114.58 1 of 5
2 Johannes Hoogstraten 104.07 1 of 5
3 Matthew Pashby 89.35 1 of 5
4 Paul Witek 87.25 1 of 5
5 Jason Heide 85.15 1 of 5
6 Kyle Breckenridge 74.64 1 of 5
7 John Bentley 73.58 1 of 5
8 Shane Russell 66.23 1 of 5
9 LJ Jones 57.82 1 of 5
10 James Hill 45.2 1 of 5

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About Reecius

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65 Responses to “Signals from the Frontline #582: Daughters of Khaine on the Way!”

  1. SacTownBrian February 21, 2018 1:46 pm #

    I am really interested in the idea of chess clocks being implemented. Any chance FLG could put up a battle report using them? I am understanding the concept but not the details of implementation, and a picture is worth a thousand words.

    Thanks for everything you do!

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 21, 2018 3:40 pm #

      It’s actually very simple, but yeah, we can probably do that.

      And thanks!

      • SacTownBrian February 21, 2018 5:11 pm #

        Thanks Reecius,

        In my mind I just think about all the ways I could game the use of the clock. I think it will be instructional to see experienced and competitive gamers use one. Perhaps put something on the line on the outcome of the game to ratchet up the pressure? The dress bet immediately comes to mind 😉.

        • Reecius
          Reecius February 21, 2018 5:57 pm #

          lol, I don’t want to get stuck in a dress again, hahaha

  2. WestRider February 21, 2018 3:26 pm #

    I don’t like the idea of chess clocks, but they certainly sound like the “least bad” solution. At least at the top tables. Lower down, I still think reducing the Points level might make for a better solution.

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 21, 2018 3:39 pm #

      Lowering points levels makes total sense, however, in poll after poll gamers have shown they do not want lower points level events.

      • WestRider February 21, 2018 4:23 pm #

        Yeah, I know. It’s just frustrating, because I find I actually like 40K better at 1500, in addition to it playing faster.

        • Dbiesto February 21, 2018 7:12 pm #

          Every few tournaments round 1 or 2 I am in the mind set to get stuck with a player who is not always familiar with their army stat lines. Basically if you win round 1, hopefully your second opponent is more familair with their army since they won. If not, be in the mind set that even if you play fast, if opponent is a “meditation type” thinker/ mover/ overthinks consequences of his decisions dont expect to get past turn 3. 5/7 of those type of games I won because even when opponent is going as slow as they were I kept telling them we are going to play fast and anything you dont know on how your army works just guess and it will be close enough and I will take your word for it. You should know majority of your rules.

          If you listen to Geoff in the tactics discussion with Pablo he is right. We all play too slow. I have skipped my psychic and movement phase before and just track how many points I am getting and just make sure to make it to turn 3+.

          With that said, the 2 tournaments at 1500 I have played in were 2 hour instead of 2.5 hour rounds and 2/3 reached turn 6 with 10-15 minutes to spare after the game.

          • Dbiesto February 21, 2018 7:20 pm

            A good example of this is I ended up playing a guy completely new to the itc and was using tyranids after a hiautus to get his army painted up. Turns out mawlocs cannot charge when they come in, and he made all of his attacks wrong using highest ap attack. We then looked over his codex and discussed how to properly use certain units as it was his first game since the codex. I gave him the benefit of the doubt to make sure we got a full game.

          • Dbiesto February 21, 2018 7:33 pm

            Another rule in several tournaments in the Bay Area I played in was both players receive 0 points for their game if they do not finish round 3.

          • Reecius
            Reecius February 22, 2018 10:27 am

            Yeah, at 1,500pts you can play much, much faster. It’s weird, I don’t know what the difference is but it’s always been a fairly dramatic change in the time you need.

          • rvd1ofakind February 22, 2018 10:58 am

            It’s mostly so some force multipliers and expensive guys would be useable.
            With less pts, you can’t really afford an expensive piece as if you just flub some rolls – you lose a third of your army, instead of a fourth (much less punishing)

  3. zero-charisma February 21, 2018 5:07 pm #

    Personally I hope you guys decide against chess clocks. It just sounds like way more work than value. I was really excited about your idea of using Battle Points to set up your top 8 or whatever and then going back to win loss. I know one of your concerns was you might have top people bounce each other out early but if you want more people in this hobby then maybe it’s not the worst thing to see some fresh faces showing up at top tables too…

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 21, 2018 5:57 pm #

      Yeah, as a spectator it is cool to see new faces but as a competitor it most assuredly is not fun to get bounced early because you drew a tough match and played a great game, you know? That makes the format less appealing for good players and encourages sand-bagging and all kinds of gamesmanship.

      Do you consider yourself to be a player that is in the hunt to win it all or are you more of a casual/competitive player?

      • zero-charisma February 21, 2018 7:17 pm #

        id say casual competitive so i can see what you are saying about the people in the hunt. I don’t envy you the position of having to try and figure this out but all I can say is it looks to me like you’re going to have many more people there to have fun then you will be having people trying to take the top spot and I would be concerned about losing the fun factor for that bulk of players. But who knows maybe it’ll make it more fun for everyone I don’t know. I’m glad you guys are the bosses, not me!

    • WestRider February 22, 2018 11:10 am #

      If there’s real concern about top contenders knocking each other out early, maybe seed the first round or so by ITC score, with high scores matched against low to stratify the field quickly.

      • Reecius
        Reecius February 22, 2018 11:16 am #

        That theoretically works but then it creates a barrier to entry for the new or inexperienced player as they come knowing they will be paired with someone who is probably a lot better than they are and that will likely beat them quite badly, giving them a negative play experience. You may see a dip in attendance.

        • WestRider February 22, 2018 6:08 pm #

          Yeah, after I posted that, I thought some more and remembered that that system is generally used for more hardcore competitions where everyone’s on the same page about what’s going to be happening as a result. Pro sports and such.

      • Venkarel February 22, 2018 12:47 pm #

        You could always give the top X percent of players a bye. The question would be what score do they get for the round they missed, I would say somewhere between 30-35 points.

        • Reecius
          Reecius February 22, 2018 1:25 pm #

          Yeah, they do that in X-Wing, very interesting system. Big incentive to come in with a good score for sure.

          • zero-charisma February 23, 2018 7:50 am

            hmm..the bye idea is really cool actually

          • Reecius
            Reecius February 23, 2018 9:43 am

            I mean, that is a MASSIVE incentive to do well in the ITC regular season, lol. Could help drive attendance to other events…

        • Venkarel February 23, 2018 11:38 am #

          I got it from MTG. They have gone through many iterations of byes for Grand Prix’s. At one point they were giving up to three byes. Think it is down to one or two now, not really sure, it was too much of an advantage. One bye seems reasonable and can you imagine, your first round begins after lunch, after fricking lunch the first day.

          • Reecius
            Reecius February 23, 2018 1:01 pm

            Yeah, it is an interesting idea for sure. However, in MtG and X-Wing they also play more rounds so that is something to consider, too.

  4. Dbiesto February 21, 2018 5:14 pm #

    I was wondering what they were gonna call the Dark Eldar this edition 😉

  5. ecstasy_in_service February 21, 2018 6:35 pm #

    Is it just me or has it been a while since the last Chapter Tactics?

    • rvd1ofakind February 21, 2018 8:37 pm #

      Just you. It was like 2 days ago with the Eldar stuff

  6. zero-charisma February 21, 2018 7:41 pm #

    id say casual competitive so i can see what you are saying about the people in the hunt. I don’t envy you the position of having to try and figure this out but all I can say is it looks to me like you’re going to have many more people there to have fun then you will be having people trying to take the top spot and I would be concerned about losing the fun factor for that bulk of players. But who knows maybe it’ll make it more fun for everyone I don’t know. I’m glad you guys are the bosses, not me!

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 22, 2018 11:02 am #

      I agree with your assessment. The average player probably doesn’t care about using a chess clock but for the competitive players/players in contention to win? Yeah, they want the game to play out fairly.

  7. rvd1ofakind February 21, 2018 9:11 pm #

    So what EXACTLY happens when the time runs out for 1 of the players?
    Can only make saving throws and get objectives? What about fight phase?

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 22, 2018 11:03 am #

      That’s it. You can do nothing else. In the fight phase your models stand there and get beat on, doing nothing in return.

    • Venkarel February 23, 2018 6:29 am #

      There are actions in the game that are not optional, fighting is one of them you cannot chose to not swing. If you did this you would have to change the rules, not that changing them is a problem just pointing it out.

      • rvd1ofakind February 23, 2018 8:04 am #

        Good point

      • Reecius
        Reecius February 26, 2018 4:47 pm #

        Fair enough but I think that is a relatively minor issue considering we’re already adding in the totally new layer of chess clocks which themselves require a page of additional instruction for their use.

  8. Ishagu February 22, 2018 2:35 pm #

    When you take an exam you have a time limit. Anyone can write better essays if they have more time, but the time limit is part of the challenge.

    Aspects of this can be applied to the game. Anyone can play better if they have unlimited time to think and move models.

    Time limit and time keeping is part of the challenge of competitive play. That lovely net list you saw? You better learn how to play it quick if you’re going to an event.
    I chose to run elite armies when I attend tournaments precisely because I’m not an overly quick player. I’d certainly do better if I took 120 guardsmen to bubble wrap my units but that would slow me down significantly.

    If players want to run the strongest lists that happen to include disposable horde spam then they have to play them fast. If you can’t play them fast don’t take them.
    The time keeping system I’m proposing is easy to implement and far more fair to players who often stand around whilst their opponents slowly move hordes around or waste time overthinking.

    Also, I outright refuse a 1500pt limits because it affects said elite armies far more that forces like Guard, Orks, Nids, etc. Not to mention that lowering points does nothing about the fact that some players take far, far longer during their turns than others – a combination of army composition and slow play. The play speed of the army and the player ABSOLUTELY should be a factor when deciding what to take to a strictly competitive event. No one should entertain the idea of punishing a player who brings an army of 18 models because the guys who bring 200 aren’t able to finish two turns.

  9. WargamerDude February 23, 2018 2:31 am #

    While I agree that chess clocks for top 8 are fine, I feel like the most impact-full cases of slow play happen during regular rounds.
    What you could do is reward people for finishing at least turn 4 with a couple of points. This will encourage finishing games for everyone and prevent people intentionally slow playing during early rounds. Most people don’t get to top 8 and many do feel robbed out of the chance to get there during early rounds.

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 26, 2018 4:48 pm #

      That has always been what has held us back on this topic. how do you deal with the majority of games in which the players just don’t care that much about time?

  10. Ytook February 23, 2018 3:48 am #

    Everyone’s talking about clocks and I’m just here waiting for Daughters of Khaine 😛

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 26, 2018 4:55 pm #

      They look so cool! I am stoked for this new faction.

  11. John Lennon
    jifel February 23, 2018 9:30 am #

    So while I am not opposed to playing with chess clocks, or at least trying it, I do not personally like the idea of it only being on day 2. After all, there are plenty of important games played on day 1, sometimes the most important games. I think that a better system would be to place a chess clock at every table. During round 1, or if both players have a loss, both players may agree to not use chess clocks. That way, any matchup of undefeateds will always use a chess clock, and anyone who has a loss but is gunning for a top 8 finish may always insist on one, but if two players are both on the mid or lower tables and want to have fun, they can opt not to use it.

    I played in, and ended up winning, a GT last season where I faced the player who ended up getting second on day 1 because we had both racked up a ton of points the previous round. If I had lost that game, I am very confident he would have run the table and won the event. Time was not of particular importance that game (ended on 5) but if there was a game to use a chess clock on, that was the game I would have said impacted my winning the event the most. Likewise, sometimes great players get paired round 1. iNcontrol and Aaron Aelong played round 1 at LVO by some chance, I have no idea what turn they finished but that game was important enough to warrant a chess clock if the day 2 games are getting timed as well.

    I know some people may not like the idea of opponents being able to agree not to use a chess clock, but frankly nothing will stop that from happening now. If my opponent and I both agree to not use the clock, there are not enough judges to walk around and catch that at most larger events.

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 26, 2018 4:57 pm #

      You make great points. However, we’re trying to find the route that pleases the most people and are not certain that using clocks on every table is a great idea (plus it is very expensive). What we may do is say if one player wants to use a clock, you do, but if both opt not to, you don’t have to.

  12. Embrace Your Inner Geek February 23, 2018 12:57 pm #

    I hate the idea of chess clocks, so much that if it was imposed in a tournament I would not attend (and before anybody accuses me of being slow I’ve been to the LVO twice and have finished all my games bar one). I go to tournaments to have fun. Winnings good and all, but it’s the experience as a whole I go for, meeting my opponents, chatting to them and having a good time. A chess clock would ruin that for me, imposing more stress and hassle.

    “shrug” – I guess you pay your money and make your choice. But if a chess clock was imposed at the LVO champs, I wouldn’t go. Which is a shame, ’cause I love the LVO.

    Are you planning to poll LVO attendees on using the chess clock? Without that, you run the risk of imposing something that the majority don’t want.

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 23, 2018 1:00 pm #

      We’re talking about including it for the Final 8, not for general play. We’d probably include a caveat that if both players wanted to use a chess clock leading up that in standard play they could.

      • Embrace Your Inner Geek February 23, 2018 1:08 pm #

        Ah, OK, I misunderstood. I thought you were talking about it more generally on day 2 for undefeated players. Little chance of me getting to the top 8..!

        • Reecius
          Reecius February 23, 2018 3:12 pm #

          I mean, yeah, we may do it for day 2 for undefeated players for events like the BAO or SoCal Open in which there isn’t a final 8, but, we’re still feeling it out. That’s why we were asking for feedback.

          The thing is, I totally get it that some folks don’t want to play with it but slow play is a real problem so we need to do something about it. We’re just trying to thread the needle between fun as you noted and addressing the image.

          • abusepuppy February 23, 2018 3:28 pm

            I know a lot of folks say they would rather play 2000pts, but I honestly wonder if there would be any consequences if you dropped the tournaments to 1750 or 1500pts. It’s a pretty surefire way to improve play times and while some people may not be happy about it, all other solutions likewise have the potential to make people unhappy.

            The only other really plausible one I see is extending round times by 15-30mins. 2.5hrs is definitely on the short side, and giving people that little extra bit can make a big difference. But, on the other hand, some people are simply slow and will fill any amount of time you give them, so there are a fair number of cases where it won’t actually make any difference on a practical level.

            Chess clocks are going to really throw people off when they are first implemented; remembering to hit the button after every interactive action (rolling armor saves, etc) is a huge attention drain and there absolutely is going to be a ton of “I ran out all my time because I forgot to switch back during turn 2” kind of stories. I feel like they should be a last-resort solution, not the default option, because as of right now we haven’t actually tried anything yet.

          • Reecius
            Reecius February 23, 2018 6:46 pm

            There will definitely be an adjustment period, no doubt. Talking to the Warmachine crowd, they implemented them in phases over time. Their community had the same reservations ours does, but now they wouldn’t go back.

          • Ishagu February 24, 2018 1:34 am

            Dropping points doesn’t solve the massive issue of one player taking longer than another. Even if a game finishes, that’s not to say both players had equal playing time and it simply isn’t fair.

            Also, a 1500 point Guard army could play slower than a 2500 point Marine army if dice are rolled and models are moved at the same speed. This focus on time management will be a positive change.

            Bring on the Chess Clocks. I’m buying one today 😀

          • Reecius
            Reecius February 24, 2018 7:39 am

            Very good point. You still have to split time fairly.

  13. Phoxly February 23, 2018 2:10 pm #

    I like the idea of chess clocks, but I feel that it shouldn’t have to go back and forth for things like saving throws. That’s just getting a bit too pedantic. I think just having the chess clock on the table keeping track of how long each player turn is taking would speed things up overall. I consider myself and my play group fairly competitive, in almost all our practice matches for tourneys we time each turn just for the sake of keeping ourselves honest and on the ball.

    Have you guys playtested making each round completed worth more points, either for the winner or for both players?

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 26, 2018 4:58 pm #

      That is how it works and while I understand your point, when you have to say, take 50 saving throws on multi-wound models with mixed gear, it does take a while and passing the clock is appropriate as otherwise that player could go slow on purpose to burn your clock.

  14. Rob Butcher February 23, 2018 2:49 pm #

    I am a casual/competitive player in the UK used to the GW GT system of scoring over five rounds/ two days. We have few instances of “slow play” but do have sportsmanship points.

    I am not a fan of chess clocks – why not have the players record the times taken for each battle round, next to the points they’ve scored? Then if a player is consistently taken too much time measures are taken against them. BOTH LOV finalists were playing slowly in the semi-finals in 2018 !! It shouldn’t be an acceptable tactic

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 26, 2018 4:59 pm #

      If you keep a time card, that is doing a very similar thing (and they tried it at ETC and found it didn’t work, I was asking them about their experience with it).

      And yeah, we don’t want slow play to be acceptable and as such are working on what we believe is the only really viable solution.

  15. Hiveminded February 23, 2018 3:23 pm #

    Yes people need to play faster. Chess clocks are one option to help people be more aware of how long they are taking.

    However, in my opinion, there needs to be more discussion of extending the round length to three hours. An extra 30 minutes at the end of a game when model count is low is HUGE. In some games, it can easily mean the completion of two additional rounds.

    In large tournies people are already commiting an entire weekend to play 40k. Extending the day by 90 minutes will not be a big deal to the majority of players if it means they get to complete games. What’s worse? Traveling for a weekend tournament and having a longer day….or commiting an entire weekend to a tournament in which none of your games go past round three?

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 23, 2018 6:47 pm #

      We have found that while yes, the round time is important that you get the fishbowl effect, meaning players will take all the time they have. Even at the ETC where you have 4.5 hour rounds, players don’t finish games.

      You need an incentive to play quicker as otherwise there’s no reason to do so.

      • Hiveminded February 26, 2018 5:57 pm #

        You’re assuming people are not trying to play fast.

        8E is just a longer game…takes more time. I used to finish all my 7E games within 2.5hrs….got to round 5 nearly every time. In 8E, I am lucky to finish three rounds. Same player….same motivation to play fast. Game is just slower.

        Also…tourneys should allow the GW dice rolling app. Saves a TON of time when I need to roll 100 attacks for a unit.

        • Reecius
          Reecius February 27, 2018 9:49 am #

          That’s funny as I think 8th is WAY faster than 7th.

  16. Ishagu February 24, 2018 1:30 am #

    There will always be aversion to change, but a few months after people start to use them no one will want to go back.

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 26, 2018 5:00 pm #

      I think this is accurate.

  17. CWDub February 24, 2018 8:03 am #

    Chess clocks are probably (as someone else stated) “the least bad solution.”

    One minor caveat that could possibly help folks with heaps of dice to roll (genestealers, big mobs of boys, Kastellan Robots with double phosphor, etc.) would be explicitly allowing the official GW Assault Dice App at ITC events. I heard on one podcast that someone would use it for their Ork army and while most people had no issue with it one or two opponents would.

    • Reecius
      Reecius February 26, 2018 5:01 pm #

      The GW dice app is legal to use. The aversion to it some people express is weird, it’s like superstition or something.

      As I understand it, their app is good to go in casinos (obviously not used by someone gambling but meaning the casinos rate it accurate enough to use it in their own machines).

      • AngryPanda February 26, 2018 5:03 pm #

        Considering rolling the million dice takes up so much time I’ll have to see how fast I can use that.

      • Hiveminded February 26, 2018 6:00 pm #

        That’s awesome news about the dice rolling app being legal to use. Maybe you could help get the word out? I’m still getting a lot of push back from local TOs that the app isn’t legal. It’s a great time saver for horde armies.

        • Reecius
          Reecius February 27, 2018 9:49 am #

          Yeah, I don’t understand the resistance to it? If the silly Nurgle dice are legal, lol, then the dice app can only be a step up.

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