The first thing to mention is that my overall feeling about playing 7th was that it was very different, but I really enjoyed it. Alex was frustrated about using the HIghlander rules and I understand his point of view, but as an introduction to the new elements of the rules it was an entertaining and learning experience.Alex and I played a Maelstrom mission with the mission cards and I found the cards meant that risks had to be taken and difficult decisions made. Should I go flat out with my Chimera to claim an objective and get a VP, even though I would probably get shot next turn??? I like this element and think it is a good move by GW. I also like the fact that virtually any unit can capture objectives and this serves to make the game more fluid and mobile as unlikely objective claimers lumber or zoom onto objectives.
Transports seem to be a good choice now, they can control objectives, are cheap in case you lose them, and can carry a unit that can also control objectives. (I think this may be one reason why Alex dislikes the Highlander rules as they don’t allow for replicated transports. In his case Rhinos with Grey Hunters are a winning combo IMHO)
The psychic phase had little effect on our game. We had a single Psyker each and although we often had 6 or 7 dice in our respective pools we often failed to cast. We also found that with six dice it was a fifty – fifty shout as to whether one could dismiss the power. Not much happened and Perils was a distinct possibility. Casting powers is now more dangerous and I think will self regulate itself. Armies with lots of psychic powers will not dominate the game and although we will see some to begin with I think they will pass away as army builds improve.
As for army builds, the ability to have ‘objective secured’ by troops is a strong incentive to have Multiple Small Units (MSU). Combat squadded marines, or five men squads in cheap transports can deliver units onto an objective to collect VPs. Stationary armies with big units cannot do so. Your 40 man Blob squad might be tough but can only control one objective and will probably not be able to get to one……It will not score.
So overall, maneuverable units that can pounce on objectives are great in Maelstrom games. These are either cheap and disposable, ie. they get the victory point and die next turn, or they are resilient like marines and might survive to jump on a second objective. With this in mind I was thinking that five man assault marines might be useful….not to fight but to bounce around claiming VPs. Perhaps even raptors now have a battlefield role?
I will have to rest for a few days now. Alex comprehensively beat me 15 – 2 but I must say I enjoyed the game and learned a lot. Now to think of a list for the Warrior Abroad.