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Off-Board Formations - General Rules

 Post subject: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2010 7:33 pm 
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As has been discussed, the rules on what off-board formations can do are unclear. There are a lot of implied things and some of the rules which might help clarify things are specific to the GT scenario. The NetERC proposes the rules below. Note that these are general rules to apply as a default when there is no other guidance. There may be exceptions for scenarios or racial special rules, like Necrons' portals.

==========

A formation in reserves may only take actions which involve moving onto the board. If it is prevented from moving onto the board the formation loses its action. A formation that is unable to move onto the board may take no actions at all.

Formations in reserve resolve effects that do not involve activation, such as end-of-turn rallies or critical hit resolutions, as normal.

Examples:

An Eldar formation tries to Engage through a portal but fails to activate. The enemy formation's Zone of Control covers the gate, preventing the formation from entering the board. The formation takes a BM for the failed activation. It may not enter the board using the Hold/Move option, so it loses the action. The formation may attempt to rally in the end phase.

A Thunderhawk picks up a formation of Assault Marines with 2 blast markers and disengages. While off-board, the formation of Assault Marines may attempt to rally.

A Thunderhawk with Assault Marines on it fails to activate. The Thunderhawk must Stand Down. The Assault Marines may take no action. The Assault Marines may attempt to rally in the end phase as normal.

====

Fire away. Unless it has direct bearing on the general treatment off off-board formations, please discuss exceptions separately at a later point.


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 Post subject: Re: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2010 8:32 pm 
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Wouldn´t it be easier to also plainly state that no, you are not allowed the "Regroup" part of Hold and Marshal actions? IMO this is what most people would be looking for off-boards.


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 Post subject: Re: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2010 9:51 pm 
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Can a unit that is off the board use a special ability that affects the rest of the army? ie Supreme Commander using its reroll while not deploy on the table? The rule itself doesnt specify and the FAQ doesnt answer this that I am aware of, although I think this is "common knowledge" but should be clarified.


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 Post subject: Re: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2010 10:03 pm 
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That's definitely in the FAQ, page 9.

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 Post subject: Re: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
PostPosted: Tue Apr 13, 2010 10:05 pm 
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Irondeath wrote:
Wouldn´t it be easier to also plainly state that no, you are not allowed the "Regroup" part of Hold and Marshal actions? IMO this is what most people would be looking for off-boards.

You could regroup as part of a Marshall action, as long as you moved onto the board. Hold could probably be included to be more explicit.

Kealios wrote:
Can a unit that is off the board use a special ability that affects the rest of the army? ie Supreme Commander using its reroll while not deploy on the table? The rule itself doesnt specify and the FAQ doesnt answer this that I am aware of, although I think this is "common knowledge" but should be clarified.

It's in the FAQ:

Quote:
Q: If a formation is offboard (awaiting teleport,
in a transport aircraft, etc.) can any special
abilities of units in that formation be used?

A: No. Special abilities of offboard units may
not be used.

A specific exception is made for abilities used to
affect the activation of the formation they are in.
For example, an Eldar formation with a Farseer
is held offboard in reserve and the Eldar player
retains the initiative to activate this formation.
Even though the formation is offboard the Eldar
player can use the Farsight ability of the Farseer
in that formation to negate the penalty for
retaining the initiative. Similarly, a Space
Marine Supreme Commander may use the
Supreme Commander ability to re-roll the
command check to activate the formation they
are in if it was offboard but could not be used to
apply that same re-roll to a formation that was
onboard or to another offboard formation.


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 Post subject: Re: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
PostPosted: Wed Apr 14, 2010 3:00 am 
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Ahhh. I looked in the 2.x section of the FAQ. Musta missed it.


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 Post subject: Re: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
PostPosted: Thu Apr 15, 2010 2:11 pm 
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I will include a version of this in the Raiders 2.0 FAQ section. Thanks for making an official ruling.


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 Post subject: Re: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
PostPosted: Thu Apr 15, 2010 2:28 pm 
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Was there ever a ruling about using the Commander ability to initiate an assault from off board? Do other off-board formations count as being within 5cm? Could the combined formation use one portal (in the case of Eldar and Necron)? Does the portal formation count as being within 5cm? Am I missing any other gamey interpretations?

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 Post subject: Re: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
PostPosted: Thu Apr 15, 2010 2:47 pm 
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Well, the FAQ in nealhunt's post says they can only affect their own unit, so I would guess the answer is no.

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 Post subject: Re: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
PostPosted: Thu Apr 15, 2010 3:09 pm 
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Dave wrote:
Was there ever a ruling about using the Commander ability to initiate an assault from off board?

Yes. Unless there is an explicit exception, no special abilities are usable when off board. An off-board commander cannot declare combined assaults.

Quote:
Does the portal formation count as being within 5cm?

No. A formation that is off board is just off board. Gates/portals/whatever do not function as proxy locations.


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 Post subject: Re: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
PostPosted: Fri Apr 16, 2010 12:29 am 
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Neal,
  1. This ruling really needs further clarification regarding blocking 'gates, and what the options are where a 'gate is almost completely blocked, restricting the number of units that can be placed.
  2. As currently worded, 1.6.1 forces every formation to take an activation, and this clarification forces such off-table forces to assault at a distinct disadvantage, because they must assault onto the table.
  3. Could you also explain why the alternative option of permitting marshalling off-table is rejected. This is the equivalent of an aircraft 'standing-down' action, and in that sense does not seem unreasonable


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 Post subject: Re: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
PostPosted: Fri Apr 16, 2010 4:01 pm 
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Ginger wrote:
Neal,
  1. This ruling really needs further clarification regarding blocking 'gates, and what the options are where a 'gate is almost completely blocked, restricting the number of units that can be placed.

That's a specific mechanism for coming onto the board, not a general issue that applies to all off-board formations. We'll get to the specifics once we have a framework in which to work.

Quote:
  • As currently worded, 1.6.1 forces every formation to take an activation, and this clarification forces such off-table forces to assault at a distinct disadvantage, because they must assault onto the table.

  • The option remains to stay off-board. This is an exception to 1.6.1. You're not forced to come onto the board. You just can't activate the formation if you choose not to.

    Quote:
  • Could you also explain why the alternative option of permitting marshalling off-table is rejected. This is the equivalent of an aircraft 'standing-down' action, and in that sense does not seem unreasonable

  • Because this would be a substantial rule change. Terminators off-board have never had the option to Marshall and stall. Guardian hosts off-board have never had the option to Marshall and stall.


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     Post subject: Re: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
    PostPosted: Fri Apr 16, 2010 9:11 pm 
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    nealhunt wrote:
    Ginger wrote:
    Neal,
    1. As currently worded, 1.6.1 forces every formation to take an activation, and this clarification forces such off-table forces to assault at a distinct disadvantage, because they must assault onto the table.

    The option remains to stay off-board. This is an exception to 1.6.1. You're not forced to come onto the board. You just can't activate the formation if you choose not to.

    Quote:
  • Could you also explain why the alternative option of permitting marshalling off-table is rejected. This is the equivalent of an aircraft 'standing-down' action, and in that sense does not seem unreasonable

  • Because this would be a substantial rule change. Terminators off-board have never had the option to Marshall and stall. Guardian hosts off-board have never had the option to Marshall and stall.


    Neal, I believe the comparison between the termies and guardians is a false one. According to 1.6.1, each formation must activate if it can; the termies have no legal activation while the guardians have several. 1.6.1 makes no distinction about the current location of the formation in question, so RAW all onboard and off-table formations *must* activate if they can and may not *pass*. It is for this reason that IMHO formations in the webway should be permitted to Marshall (or 'stand down' in a/c parlance), an option that is still encompassed within the current wording of the rules while 'passing' is expressly forbidden (see below).
    Quote:
    1.6.1 Actions
    To carry out an action, first nominate an unbroken formation and then choose an action for it to carry out. The actions that can be chosen are listed as follows. Note that you must activate a formation if you can, you can’t choose to ‘pass’ unless you have no choice in the matter. Also note that a formation may only be activated once per Action phase.


    Could you please explain why you believe this approach would be a "substantial rule change" - it seems to me that introducing the ability to *pass* would be a more significant change.


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     Post subject: Re: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
    PostPosted: Fri Apr 16, 2010 10:06 pm 
    Purestrain
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    Ginger: First, I think we need to clarify terminology. The reference to "passing" in 1.6 is in reference to the player, not a formation. A player with an activate-able formation may not choose to activate nothing - to "pass" - and then later pick back up and start activating again after the opponent has taken an action.

    I am not clear as to what you mean when you say that a formation off-board can "pass" under this language. Can you give an example?

    Ginger wrote:
    According to 1.6.1, each formation must activate if it can; the termies have no legal activation while the guardians have several. 1.6.1 makes no distinction about the current location of the formation in question

    1.6 doesn't make a distinction but the various rules for off-board formations do. The point of us proposing language is to consolidate and clarify all those exceptions into a single general purpose rule.


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     Post subject: Re: Off-Board Formations - General Rules
    PostPosted: Sat Apr 17, 2010 1:19 am 
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    While I accept that 'passing' refers to the player, it refers to him activating formations if he is able to do so. There are two ways of reading this:-
    • That the player may not 'pass' to defer activating formations, so he is not allowed to let his opponent take several consequetive turns. This is also covered by the initial summary of 1.6 that states "In the action phase, the players take it in turns to carry out actions with their unbroken formations."
    • That he may not 'pass' or ignore an activation, so he must activate all 'activatable' formations. In this sense there is no distinction between him activating an off-table or onboard formation if the formation can be activated.

    The only off-board reference that I am aware of is the last sentence of 6.1.7 which says
    Quote:
    Formations entering play in aircraft or from spacecraft can do so on any turn, following the rules for transport aircraft and planetfall (see 4.2.5 & 4.4) Formations that are in reserve may not carry out any game functions or use special abilities they may have.

    This juxtaposition with aircraft and spacecraft suggests that the last sentence does not apply to 'activating' the formations that are in reserve.

    So as an example I have 11 Eldar formations that include some off-table Swooping Hawks and two formations of Guardians to be deployed through two storm serpents.
    • If at the start of the turn I elect not to teleport the SHawks, I cannot 'activate' them during the turn because I have declared that they will enter by teleporting, and so they have no legal move.
    • If the gates are either used or destroyed, I may not activate any remaing formations in the Webway because at that point they also have no legal move.
    • However, while there is a single unused 'gate available, I must 'activate' both Guardians during the turn like any other on-table formation because they do have legal moves. This includes the option for the first to Marshall and the other to subsequently use the gate. (If the first formation used the gate, the second would lose its activation because it would no longer have a legal move)


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