Monday, May 26, 2014

The new meta for 7th: Psykers?

When I look back at what I wrote when 6th edition came along, I suggested that the new meta would rotate around flying and flyers. Was that the correct prediction?

In part perhaps. Certainly the advent of flyers such as the Heldrake became defining for a number of Chaos builds. And certainly many marine armies started to feature flyers of their own to a greater or lesser extent.

This had one direct effect on the kinds of armies that I employed: they would either feature flyers of their own, or have multiple ways of dealing with and counteracting flyers. Mark for instance the growth in the number of sky fire squads and fortifications. But I missed out on the sheer growth of deathstar units (but quickly caught on…).

In 7th, I'm going to go out on a (ambiguously sized) limb and suggest that psykers and the psionics phase will come to be the defining feature of the new edition, with unbound armies coming almost in parallel to that (but even perhaps in 2nd place to psionics). Not only will the new system, I think, lead to a huge increase in psykers on the battlefield, but it will also lead to an increase in ways to counter them. Just in the same way that flyers did for 6th. This is not necessarily a bad thing. It just leads to more builds and a different type of arms race. At least in the sense that it is now a very wide open field when it comes to army building. I think we're going to see many armies focusing on psychics, but we're also going to see some other more left-field armies have incredible success as folks build armies on a different meta - perhaps excessive numbers of flyers, infiltrators, jump infantry, drop pod death, fortifications plus defenders or other shenanigans. Being so wide open, its going to see a plethora of builds that will all prove viable one way or another. At least that's my prediction. In so much as the new psychics will open up very specific builds but as armies are constructed around its boons or counter-measures, others will take out the field by some out-of-the-box thinking.

That said, I am concerned as a daemons player. Although I certainly have enough daemonettes, plaguebearers, pink horrors, and bloodletters to summon (and indeed: greater daemons), I worry that a chaos army focussed around summoning extra daemons will be quickly banned in more competitive and casual play.

In the meantime: Vive Le Revolution!


Tristan M said...

all the rumours I've read suggest diminishing returns from psykers, powers only being able to be cast once per turn, etc. so wondering why you are thinking psykers will be so prevalent?

jabberjabber said...

Multiple redundancy in summoning. The ability to gain heaps more troops (and indeed: greater daemons) over the course of the entire game might prove meta-defining. And I wouldn't put it past many tournament players to sell their proverbial souls to the chaos gods for victory in this regard as well! (meaning none-chaos factions! heheh).

Greg Hess said...

I think the lack of penalty for failing to summon is going to be one of the major issues in tournament spam summoning armies.

If you failed a summoning, and the unit came in under your opponents control, that would probably instantly put a damper on it.

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