My 40K House Rules

November 24, 2013

Played in a sincerely fun tournament last weekend. Two of my favorite things were how First Blood was replaced with ‘Our Boys are Coming Home’ (half or more of your troops alive and in play at the end of the game) and how one of the games had gale-force winds, making all skimmers, jump units, flyers and barrage weapons scatter after they finished their moves. Neither ‘broke’ the game, and although I lost the match where the gale-force winds were in effect, I sincerely enjoyed it (despite moving 6″ forward and 6″ back on one occasion, screwing up disembarking my Scythe Guard >.<).

The tournament helped gel some House Rules I’ve been toying with for the past 6+ months. I encountered a couple of the Environmental Effects in tournaments, and the Combined Missions are a blend of Bay Area Open and ‘The Big Crapshoot’ missions:

Combined Missions

Note: Deployment (Dawn of War, Hammer and Anvil, Vanguard) is rolled for as per the rule book, as are Night Fighting, Reserves and Random Game Length.

There are 6 combinations of missions. Roll a d6 to determine which combination is in effect:

  1. Emperor’s Will + Purge the Alien + Fast Attack Scoring
  2. Emperor’s Will + Purge the Alien + Heavy Support Scoring
  3. Emperor’s Will + Purge the Alien
  4. Crusade (3 Objectives) + Purge the Alien
  5. Crusade (3 Objectives) + Purge the Alien + Heavy Support Scoring
  6. Crusade (3 Objectives) + Purge the Alien + Fast Attack Scoring
  •  Note 1: No objective may be placed in the controlling player’s own DZ.
  • Note 2: In each combination, roll to determine which mission is the Primary, and which the Secondary. The Primary mission rewards 3 Victory Points. The Secondary mission rewards 2 Victory Points. A ‘tie’ on the Primary mission rewards each player 1 Victory Point. A ‘tie’ on the secondary mission awards nothing to either player.
  • Note3: When Fast Attack or Heavy Support choices are Scoring, they do NOT award an ‘extra’ kill point.

Environmental Effects (Optional)

There are 6 possible environmental effects, one of which may be active during a game. Roll 2d6 (2-12) to determine which environmental effect, if any, is active:

  1. (2) Warp Rift Vortex—2 Large Blast Templates scatter 2d6” every turn (‘hit’ = move toward nearest unit); any unit touched by the template, or passed over (including flyers), or any unit that passes over the template (including flyers), takes d6 S4 AP– hits and must take a Pinning test (whether or not the unit takes an unsaved wound). The templates are to be considered Impassible Terrain; no model may finish its move on the template. The templates stop at terrain pieces, i.e. they only affect open ground (and hill tops that are not also area terrain). Each player may ‘deploy’ (during his deployment) one of the templates on the line dividing table halves, so long as it is placed in ‘open’ terrain.
  2. (3) Tremors—Roll once at the beginning of each game turn. On a 5+ ALL terrain (even ‘open’ terrain) is considered Difficult for an entire game turn and Difficult terrain is considered Difficult AND Dangerous!
  3. (4-6) Black as Night—If Night Fighting is in effect on the first game turn, it does not end until the end of the second game turn. If night Fighting is not in effect on the first game turn, it comes into effect at the beginning of the fourth game turn and remains in effect for the remainder of the game.
  4. (7) Nothing to see here.
  5. (8-10) Meteor Showers—At the beginning of each game turn, roll a d6 for every unit on the board (including Flyers). On a ‘6’ the unit/model takes a hit from a Small Blast Marker (placed for maximum casualties, by the controlling player) that does not scatter. The blast is S5 AP4. Only Jink and Area Terrain based cover saves are allowed as the point of origin is above the unit struck; armor and invulnerable saves may be taken as normal. The side armor value is used if a vehicle (including flyers) is struck.
  6. (11) Warp Lightning—At the beginning of each game turn, roll a d6 for every VEHICLE on the board (including Flyers). On a ‘5+’ the vehicle takes d3 S6 AP– hits vs. its side armor. No Jink or Cover saves allowed.
  7. (12) Hurricane Winds—Skimmers, Jump Infantry/Jump Monstrous Creatures, Flyers, Deep Strikers (Except for Deep Strikers that arrive via Teleport or ‘Portal’) AND attacks with the ‘Barrage’ characteristic Scatter. Flyers and Deep Strikers scatter 2d6”, all others scatter (an additional) 1d6”. All units/models stop scattering if/when they end up in base contact with any piece of terrain. Non-flyers that end up in base contact with a piece of terrain, must take a dangerous terrain test. (Thank you Rumble in the Tundra)

Note: Neither Mysterious Terrain nor Mysterious Objectives is in effect during any game, ever.

Bonus Victory Points

There are 3 possible bonus victory points:

  • Slay the Warlord—You earn 1 bonus Victory Point if the enemy Warlord is removed from play for any reason (Perils of the Warp, failed Dangerous Terrain, Deep Strike Mishap, etc.).
  • Line Breaker—You earn 1 bonus Victory Point if you have at least one unit (of any kind, not falling back) fully in your opponent’s DZ at the end of the game.
  • Bring Our Boys Home—You earn 1 bonus Victory Point if half or more of your troop choices are in play (deployed on the table, not falling back) at the end of the game. (Thank you Rumble on the Tundra)

First blood is too easy to get and is mutually exclusive. The substitution moves the focus from ‘who goes first’ to ‘who can keep their troops alive ’til the end’, which is more satisfying. Mysterious Terrain/Mysterious Objectives can be game-breaking (not always, but sometimes), so they are excluded. The Relic mission is a travesty, so is rightfully absent from the possible mission combinations.


Just wrapped these up today. I have a tournament in a week or so and since I’ll be putting these on the table (for the second time), I have to have them painted or be completely disappointed in myself.


All of the techniques and colors were the same as the other five, except for the use of Seraphim Sepia on all the gold bits on the Spirit Seer.


While the gems aren’t anything to write home about, they are a lot easier now that I’ve done a couple. Mostly, I’m just happy to have the blue to bring some diversity to the color scheme.


Who says the Eldar don’t wear leather; shiny, RED leather (yellow leather…red leather…yellow leather…)?


Thanks for looking, and for the kind comments. My hope is to show other ‘non-painters’ that they can achieve some decent results with only a little effort and even less skill!

Finished a small unit of Wraith Guard this weekend.


I was brave(?) enough to actually do a gem (singular).


They were primed in black, base coated in the Krylon (sp?) ‘tan’ color, dry-brushed with some terrible mix of white and ‘Skeleton Bone’ (Army Painter).


The red is Mephiston, the black is black, the gold is shiny. The wash is the Army Painter ‘Light’ tone.


They are sealed with a clear satin (I think satin is under-rated and I think ‘flat’ sealers make my amateur painting look even worse than it is). I have tested models (same model, painted the same way) with both sealers and always end up picking the satin. I -think- it’s because I don’t dork around with ‘highlights’.