Chaos Daemons – Why the Hate for the Warp Storm Table?

I finally got my hands on the new Chaos Daemons Codex. People worldwide, from Australia to Spain, from Argentina to Canada seem to have gotten theirs over the weekend, but Royal Mail apparently needed a few days extra to drive it the ~50 miles from Nottingham to my house. Oh well.

Skimming blogs and forums as people got their hands on the new Warhammer 40K Codex, I saw a lot of rage and gnashing of teeth directed towards the new Warp Storm Table (Codex p. 27).

When I finally got my hands on the book, among the first things I did was look up the Warp Storm Table. I fully expected to find some mean, punitive chart that would sink Chaos Daemons as an army. To my surprise, I found one of the most benign charts in Warhammer 40K yet.

For the most part, the Warp Storm Table is just free Daemon-Dakka and a boost to the army.

#1- What’s on the Warp Storm Table?

If you don’t have the book, the Warp Storm Table is a 2D6 table (11 possible results) that each army made with a primary detachment from the new Chaos Daemons codex has to roll on at the start of each of the Daemon-player’s shooting phase (Daemons-vs.-Daemons gets twice the fun!).

Normally, these kinda charts give you bad results on low rolls and good results on high rolls (and a “nothing-happens” on the common 2D6 result of a 7). If “the good” and “the bad” is symmetrical, they cancel each other out in the long run, but add a bit more mayhem to games while you’re at it.

For reference, here’s a little 2D6 probability chart I made with my mad Excel-skillz.

Probability of a result on 2D6

Result of 7 – The Warp is Calm

As is usual for these kind of tables, nothing happens on a 7 (with a probability of 1/6 on 2D6; i.e. giving you pretty much one turn of “The Warp is Calm” in your average 6-turn game).

Results 2 & 12 – Big Things Happening

These are the rarest and (in theory) most drastic results. A 12 gives the Daemon player a new scoring unit of basic Daemons. Nice. A 2 forces all Daemon units to take one of the new instability tests, which usually means casualties to ~ 40% of your army (as  LD7 and 8 are very common). Ouch. Undeniably bad. However, with a probability of only 1 in 36, this will only happen (on average) once every 6 games (as will be the boon of an added, free scoring unit!).

Results 3 & 11 – The Warp Sniping at Characters

These are both “once-every-three-games” events. A 3 will possibly cost you a character. An 11 may cost your opponent a psyker (if he has one), swapped for a Herald behind enemy lines.

These are the two results arguably balanced “against” the Daemon player, as the result of 3 is more likely to take one of your own, than the result of 11 is to remove an enemy-characters. The latter may net your opponent a “free” kill-point, evening out the for taking out one of his psykers.

Results 4 & 10 – Fiddling with Saves

This a “classic” symmetrical result. A 4 weakens your saves. A 10 boosts your saves. One or the other should happen (on average) once a game. In the long run, they cancel themselves out.

Results 5, 6, 8 & 9 – Free Daemon Dakka!

This is where the meat of the table is. Taken together, these 4 results make up exactly 50% of all outcomes of a 2D6 rolls. All four results (one for each Chaos God) mean that every un-engaged enemy unit is peppered with hits on a roll of 6. These aren’t throw-away hits either. Depending on the result, there’s plenty of AP3, Str. 8, poisoned, rending, ignore cover and more in the mix!

There is also a chance some of your own get targeted (Khorne fires on Slaanesh units, Tzeentch on Nurgle, etc…). These “friendly-fire” hits are thus more selective than those thrown at the enemy.

  1. For a mono-God list, only one result in four can do any harm (though all 4 target the enemy, so at worst both sides take damage evenly).
  2. In a list with daemons from all 4 gods, only a fraction will be targeted (but all units of the enemy are in it).

Long story short, there’s some pretty neat “pro-daemon” results on both sides of the 7.

#2 – What to Expect from the Warp Storm Table?

In conclusion therefore, the positive results far, far outweigh the bad, even if one were to classify the odd 11-result as a less-than-thrilling thing to come up.

  • Good results: 5 and 6, 8 to 10 and a 12 (61.11% of all rolls)
  • Bad results: 2 to 4 (16.67% of all rolls)
  • Neutral/odd-ball results: 7 and 11 (22.23% of all rolls)

Seriously, I’ve never seen a random-chart so friendly and helpful. And it’s all free too. Should be a good boost to Chaos Daemons by and large.

What do you think?

Z.

Zweischneid

Zweischneid

I am Zweischneid. Wargame Addict. Hopeless painter and founder of Pins of War. I hope you enjoyed this article. Don't forget to share your favourite miniature pictures and wargaming videos at www.pinsofwar.net.
Zweischneid
Stags on the Prowl - New Wood Elves Artwork? http://t.co/J5rQsS98XP #wfb #wargaming #woodelves #digitalart http://t.co/tW61o2cvi3 - 26 mins ago
Zweischneid

Latest posts by Zweischneid (see all)

  • http://twitter.com/belverker belverker

    I thought people were complaining because it was good for the Daemons and free…I see It as just a random shooting attack for an army with very little (well other than the new toys)

  • http://www.imperiusdominatus.com/ Mercer

    Very informative info. Currently I have just seen the table as a pain in the arse. I think it is the double 1 and the attacks from the chaos gods which get me, but as you said, the chances are low. The chances of the results have added some new light.

  • XVRogue

    While your post is a very positive outlook on the chart, you are overlooking what it adds to the game.

    You tried to explain how the chance of the chart works, and you’re right that this game is based around chance. We roll dice to hit, to wound, for armour and a myriad of other reasons. However, what we do to normally combat chance is roll more dice.

    How do I mean? Expecting to kill a Terminator with 1 bolter is ludicrous. Expecting to kill a terminator with a squad of marines rapid firing, however, is much more palatable. We roll more dice to create better averages. The rare situations where 1 bolter does kill a terminator or a squad fails any kills stand out because they are extreme.

    What’s been happening recently, however, is the addition of “extreme success” and “extreme failure” results on dice. When rolling to shoot with bolters, it doesn’t matter whether you get a 3, 4, 5, or 6 all have the same result: “a hit.” When shooting with tesla, however, a 3, 4 and a 5 are all the same, but the 6 is different. It is an extreme success. If you fired three bolters and rolled three 6′s, you wouldn’t bat an eye, but with tesla, that’s such a better result than the other dice faces that it immediately becomes a point of frustration of cheer depending on which side of the table you’re on.

    It’s been in the game for a long time with failures as well: A Guardsman firing a plasmagun treats 2s and 3s the same, but the unfortunate 1 potentially is his death.

    The Warpstorm table creates yet another opportunity for extreme success or extreme failure, something that goes beyond “chance” that can be countered with additional models, choice or tactics and can only be countered with additional games.

    So, while you can argue that it is balanced because the negatives parallel the positives, the fact is that the negatives will always have targets and the positives may not (your opponent doesn’t have a psyker, you don’t have extra models, etc).

    I see these problems with it:
    1) It slows the pace of the game
    2) It’s results all typically involve additional (and lengthy) dice rolling.
    3) It can have a very dramatic impact on the game without any kind of player involvement or manipulation beyond “picking daemons.”

    • http://pinsofwar.net/ Zweischneid

      Interesting. I like the concept of “extreme” success (or failures).

      The caveat to “it slows the pace of the game” – to me – seems that results with more “extreme” results would be far more worthwhile rolling (as more often unusual things happen) than the “non-extreme” rolls.

      10 Tac Marines rapid-firing on Terminators has so many dice, creating, as you said, rare outcomes so rarely, that it likely wouldn’t change the game much to just do away with these rolls and remove the statistical average of Terminators.

      Those with “extreme” results, IMO, are those where actually rolling the dice makes more of a difference, making it less of an “unnecessary” slow-down, and more a less predictable element worth consulting the dice for in the first place.

      No?

      • XVRogue

        Some people like them (such as yourself) some people dislike them (such as myself).

        What’s important about wargear/rules of this nature is that the player is able to pick whether or not you want to utilize extreme successes/failures or not.

        Example:
        Plasma pistol on a space marine sergeant. 1 shot, /maybe/ 2 during the game. Chance to insta-gib an enemy, or potentially even gib himself. Player choice.

        This situation represents a conscious choice on part of the player. Some armies include it, some do not. Both schools of thought are supported.

        My primary problem with the Warp Storm is that I don’t have the choice to ignore it, avoid it, or really in any way manage it (musicians don’t count).

        • http://pinsofwar.net/ Zweischneid

          Neither does Fateweaver I suppose ;)

          But yeah, I get what you mean. I was (am) rather sad that the CSM-Dex killed the option to mix marks in a unit. It seems a petty restriction that does nothing to people who wouldn’t want to do it anyway, and only hurts those that like to do it.

          It removed an option I happened to like.

          http://pinsofwar.com/mixing-your-marks-or-how-chaos-space-marines-forgot-about-jervis-johnson/

          But I guess that is a more common trait now with 6th Edition Books (or at least with Phil Kelly books). They simply like to rail-road the player a bit and don’t give you the kind of sand-box freedom you had, say, in the Grey Knights’ Henchmen entry.