December 19, 2010

Rumors: Necrons

It appears that the blogosphere is up and at it with new rumors on my favorite codex army; Necrons. These rumors mean two things for me. First, when "reliable" rumors start emerging from the depths of the internet, it has repeatedly proven to mean that GW is currently working on the rules for said army's next codex. This makes me quite giddy. The Necrons are arguably the worst army to be competitive with and I must say I'm surprised they haven't had an update yet. Secondly, this gives me something to write about. Dark Future Games and Inquisitor Lord Aki have already given their reviews. Check out the rumors and my take on them as I beat this topic to death after the jump.
New Monolith Variant? I Heard From A Reliable Source, Yes.

New Codex drops mid year.
Assuming the Grey Knights are coming out at the beginning of the year, this sounds plausible. Let's hope this doesn't get pushed back any further. If the end of the world is in 2012, I'm going to want as much Necron time as possible.

WBB changes to FNP for most units.
This makes me sad. You ask any 'cron player out there if they want WBB to be FNP and I would wager 117% of them will say yes, but I don't want this change. WBB pales in comparison to FNP as far as rules go, but WBB was completely unique, and that's what drew me to Necrons in the first place. You know, other than them being soul-sucking robot zombies. WBB, Gauss and their FOC made Necrons the single most unique army in the game. While there are draw backs to each and every one of those unique features, it made the army feel like it had set itself apart from the rules of 40k. WBB may lose to FNP, Gauss may fail hard in 5th Edition and the incredibly small FOC options do hinder the army a great deal (and is more than responsible for their lack of power,) but I love the way Necrons currently work. I feel they just need a bit of tuning to compete. I know it'll never happen, but a guy can dream.

New HQ options include one new C'Tan.
I'm not a fan of this rumor either. I feel that if there is a being that consumes worlds and is in all measurable characteristics a friggin' God, the stats and rules that would be required to put this thing on the battlefield just couldn't be nailed down correctly. Even to Apocalypse's standards I don't think there's a right way to place several Gods in this game. I know, I know, they aren't the C'tan in their actual form, supposedly, but you see my point.

The Nightbringer and Deceiver to get new models and at least one will have optional "incarnations".
I'm not keen on trying to fix things that ain't broke, so why GW feels the need to replace the Nightbringer model baffles me. But if they're capable of making it even more bad ass than it already looks (not likely,) then have at it. The Deceiver model I never really liked, personally. I could see some improvement there. As for incarnations, I'm not entirely sure what this means. If someone could fill me in that'd be great.

New Tomb Spider plastic model. option to create alternate model that is Heavy artillery.
And the Necron followers cried out, "Thank you!" Tomb Spiders, while not the most ubr of options available to the Necrons right now, are something I think most 'cron players would love to try out. But you slap a 22 dollar price tag on something you just want to "try out" and it's a whole new ball game. The alternate model mentioned intrigues me. I'm trying to visualize an artillery Tomb Spider and I just can't come up with anything that doesn't make me giggle like a pre-pubescent teen. My first idea was a Tomb Spider with a cannon jutting out of its back firing little scarabs at the enemy. From there it moved on to large Gauss Cannon legs and took a steep decline into Gauss crotch cannons. I'll stop myself there and we'll move on.

New Fast CC focus unit, Jump Infantry, Warrior sized.
This is an interesting turn. I can picture Wraiths moving silently and quickly through walls, hordes of Scarabs swaying in the wind as they rein destruction on those down below and I can even picture hover butts, despite how much I loathe how they look. I can't, however, come up with a jump infantry unit for Necrons that makes sense visually. Unless it was a teleportation sort of travel. We'll see where this one goes.

New models for Immortals.
New models is always neato-burrito. But we're missing the key word here; plastic. I couldn't care less if the Immortals have new models or not, the only thing that matters to this guy is plastic. Come on GW, your overpriced pewter models that made things irritating to create conversions with was cute and all, but you've clearly mastered the same details with plastic that pewter used to hold by itself. Let's get with the times, shall we?

New "tank" - could be the TS based artillery just referenced from different source.
No, no, no and no. Personally, I don't want to see anything in this dex with an AV, save the Monolith of course. We all get it. Nids have the best MCs because they have no tanks. Necrons have the best "tank" because they only get the one. A footslogging force of zombies shouldn't have vehicles, and I'm really hoping this stays the way it is.

New MC walker - likely the rumored "Necronmancer", may be HQ or Heavy.
I've heard all sorts of rumors about the Necromancer. It'll be a psyker. It'll be an MC. It'll be a Lord variant. It'll give blow jobs. All sorts of rumors! If it's going to be an MC, I just have to ask, is GW making Necrons a slow/shooty version of Nids? If so I weep for the upcoming dex.

New plastic Lord with all options.
About. Damn. Time. Assuming this includes the Destroyer Body, this may be a pricey kit. But what isn't a pricey kit from GW, really?

New named Lord metal blister.

New Monolith option...not represented in models to be released.
You've already seen the new Monolith variant I got from a "reliable" source up above, but this is interesting regardless. I'd personally like to keep the Necrons at a one-vehicle limit. The Monolith is the biggest and the best, but it's given to an army that has no other AV options or transports, a fair trade imo. With this change, I'm wondering if they're going to nerf the original Monolith seeing as there's a couple of rumors here that mention more AV coming to the Necrons.

I don't have the brightest outlook for this dex, looking at this list of rumors. It looks as if GW is continuously conforming all of the armies do be more alike. As soon as Nids got a drop pod, I should have assumed it was all downhill from there for the Necrons. I foresee the last of the foot-slogging armies becoming transport/vehicle reliant, WBB conforming to FNP, Gauss conforming to Rending and few very powerful FOC choices becoming many lackluster choices. While these changes are what people cry out for, I, above all else want to see this army remain the completely unique and mysterious army it has been. Not another version of Space Marines.

Later days.


  1. I think some of the uniqueness you see in the current Necron codex really doesn't exist. WBB is just FNP with a little difference. Gauss is rending with just a little difference. Necron Warriors are Space Marines with just a little difference.

    The biggest difference in Necrons is the lack of variety (uniformity) and lack of vehicles. Necrons need more variety. Every codex has expanded the core armies and created further diversity (especially the Space Marine variants).

    Do Necrons need more vehicles? Not really, (vehicles don't seem very Necrony). But, the current rule set makes some kind of transportation a must have. Slow, foot slogging armies are just target practice.

  2. Maybe I should've tried harder on my Codex: Royal Necrons post? They seem to be hitting most of the bells that I did, more or less a few. I, too, lament the loss of WBB, as it was what made Necrons sexy and unique. Alas, too many people misunderstood/abused it, so it was only a matter of time, really.

    I am in favor of new plastic Tomb Spiders, as they mean more plastic bits, and maybe we'll also see the Tomb Stalker (hopefully upgunned and lower points cost)

  3. @IceStation
    WBB and FNP are very similar, I'll give you that. But, there's a visual finesse that doesn't exist anywhere else in the game with WBB. You lay your model down, he's literally dead. And half the time, he gets back up, good as new. That, in the world of 40k, is not only daunting to its opponent, but pure badassery.

    I'll argue with you on Gauss vs Rending. Rending on any weapon can have varying results. You stick rending on a las gun or bolter, you have no hope of hurting that Land Raider. You put Gauss on those weapons, your opponent will have no choice but to fear them. Rending is a subjective tool, Guass isn't.

    And while I agree, SMs and Warriors have similar stats, it's their tools that diversify everything. You could say IG and Orks are the same with just a little difference as well, but that's only stats. Necrons come with the Gauss and the WBB and they're a completely different beast.

    I know Necrons need and will probably get more variety, it's inevitable. 3 choices per FOC slot back in 3rd was okay. Every army had fewer choices than they do now. So I'm preparing myself for that. No matter how much I dislike it, it's inevitable. I'll be okay with changes that are needed. I won't be okay with conformity for the sake of conformity. That's what I feel WBB>FNP and Gauss>Rending is, that's what I have a problem with.

    I agree with you on vehicles. A quick fix for balance is an AV these days. I think balance can be found without this, but whether GW will take the time or not is the question.

    I liked a lot of the rule changes you made in that post. You were making changes, but attempting to keep the 'crons unique at the same time.

    After discussing it with some friends this evening, I think my main concern is keeping Gauss unique. I can understand more variety, if only because it's what 99.9% of the population wants. I can, to an extent, understand FNP as it makes the rules a lot easier for newer players. But a change from Gauss to Rending would infuriate me. They're two completely different concepts. In all of the fluff for Gauss, it in no way acts like Rending. That's another reason FNP would still bother me. In the codex fluff, books and video games; Necrons die and then get back up. They don't shrug off wounds.

    I suppose GW has created this story that I've fallen in love with, and because of the conformity of the rules it will be wiped clean and changed into something else. This is what I hate to think about.

    I'm ecstatic about the plastic TSpiders. So many awesome conversion possibilities with those things. The TStalker could be so much better, I agree. But I think they should just remove the shooting weapons altogether and correct its melee problems. No guns means a lower point cost, then they'd just have to correct the crappy rules the thing has.

  4. Lantz,
    You are absolutely right that the whole far outweighs the pieces. A Space Marine with FNP and Rending is a whole different beast then your standard Space Marine. The model will play differently and be played against differently.

    I hear you when you say laying a Necron down and then having him rise back up is pretty awesome (and it would be cool if they could keep it), but the play mechanics and timing of it gets pretty wonky when you start figuring out moral failures, who is within 6", and when were they within 6", etc.

    I really wanted the Dark Eldar to be able to take slaves and have it affect the game, but that aspect got dropped and was replaced with Power from Pain. I really like Power from Pain and I think it makes the Dark Eldar even more interesting. Maybe something like that is in the works for the Necrons.

  5. I'm crossing my fingers. I think WBB will probably get tossed aside, for the same reasons you and #2501 listed. I just... I just don't wanna!
    /throw fit

  6. Icestation:
    Slow foot slogging armies are just pie fodder, you're right. I learned that very early on playing against Eric and to this day I dread playing Necrons against an IG army simply for that reason.

    But I will disagree with you as for gauss. I just hope that gauss will have it's AP adjusted for everything but the base troops. Look in the codex and you'll find that pretty much every weapon that a necron can take is AP 4 or AP 5 with one exception. That exception being the heavy destroyer that Lantz loathes so much.

    In my mind that'd fix a lot of the issues I see with it, as opposed to rending. With gauss, there's always a chance of immobilizing / weapon destroying anything with an armor rating, regardless of how awesome it is.. Swap out that AP 4 gun the troops have for a AP 4 gun with rending (which is +d3 to AP isn't it?), and you're straight up hosed trying to stop anything vehicle related IMO.

    My personal hopes are similar to what we talked about in our gaming group: getting upgrades to troops, like making one a Pariah or Immortal vs having to bring a whole platoon of them with you knowing once the enemy spots them, they'll just bullet hose them into the table top. Burying them in a squad at least lets you hide them some.

    Or at least let us have another troop option like the Flayed Ones, something.

  7. Rending gives you +d3 to the weapon's strength when firing at vehicles if you roll a 6 to penetrate. It also counts as AP2 and an auto-wound to targets with toughness if you roll a 6 to wound.

    AP is hardly the issue with the current codex, imo. You put enough S5+ weapons on the field and suddenly armour saves will get widdled down by too many wounds to roll for. And to be realistic, AP1 just flat out doesn't matter in this game when it comes to shooting vehicles. You can roll a 5 or a 6 regardless to wreck or explode said vehicle when you penetrate. An AP1 weapon just increases your chance from ~33.3% to 50% to removing that vehicle from your list of threats. AP1 for hurting vehicles is neato, but not a necessity by any means.

    Now, for an army like the Necrons that lack low AP values _as well as_ a lot of high Strength values on their weapons, this is where the codex is crippled. The reason for this made sense in 4th Edition, but has caused the army to be at the bottom of the barrel in 5th. If Gauss does in fact get changed to Rending, we'll need to see some higher Strength values or at the very least some lower AP, like you said.

    Something you brought up last week was changing Necron glancing hits to a -1 on the vehicle damage table rather than a -2. I think this is a definite possible fix for the entire issue. This would allow Gauss to wreck a vehicle on the first shot (with a poop-ton of luck) which is exactly how it functioned in 4th Edition. I'm very curious to see if this was the change if Phase Out wouldn't be such a hinder anymore.

    With FNP becoming more and more abundant throughout 5th Edition, it's arguably a must to at least get some AP2 in there. But Necrons hardly have an issue taking out infantry when firing; that's not their problem. The problem is (aside from close combat finesse) being able to deal with vehicles with the changes that 5th Edition brought in. If they correct this and remove or restructure Phase Out, I see a more powerful army. Not Space Wolves powerful, but better than what they are right now.

    I don't see them mixing/matching Necron types in each unit. That's not how the Necrons form up in fluff. Aside from the Lords, Necron units are separate from each other, and when it comes to rules; they must do this to get their WBB roll when out of range of a portal or an orb. There's no leader in each squad (Everyone has Ld10, they're robots for god sakes,) just the collective onslaught.

    I think the "the enemy spotting a unit and bullet hosing them into the table top" won't be an issue if Phase Out is removed or retooled. Currently, you need to get 30-40+ Warriors on the table to avoid Phase Out issues since Warriors are the cheapest/smartest way to get Necrons on the table. Let's say this rule is removed and point costs are realistic (unlike the current rule set). Your enemy isn't going to be seeing waves of Warriors anymore; I foresee 2 squads of Warriors on the table and that's it. From that point you can spread out what you desire without worry of not having enough "Necrons" for Phase Out. I like Phase Out, I really do. It gives yet another visual and rule set that doesn't exist in any other codex. Unfortunately, what once was a balancing tool is now a break in the functionality of the entire codex; bottle-necking your choices if you plan on actually having a shot at winning.

  8. I keep seeing "Necrons don't need another vehicle" but all I'm hearing is blah! Necrons DO have another vehicle, it's not in WH40K but it is in epic..... oh OK, this is the link to the Necron Obelisk...

    'nuff said.