Handguns vs crossbows - ideas to make handguns a better choice

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  • Interestingly, me and @Fthunder have had this conversation multiple times, to no resolution.
    Care to throw in any words of defence for the handgun here Felix?

    I think the amount by which one is better than the other is less than 1pt/model, which makes it a difficult situation to solve.
    Particularly when handguns/xbows are defined in the frozen gold rulebook.

    For my side, I always preferred xbows in 1.3 and before because of the longer short range. This is mitigated significantly by the accurate order.
    The extra pip of AP is not insignificant, and if going second (or in some deployment types) the range is less of an issue.
    Crossbows probably suit me personally better, but generally I think I would take a unit of each before taking two units of one of them.
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  • DanT wrote:

    Interestingly, me and @Fthunder have had this conversation multiple times, to no resolution.
    Care to throw in any words of defence for the handgun here Felix?

    I think the amount by which one is better than the other is less than 1pt/model, which makes it a difficult situation to solve.
    Particularly when handguns/xbows are defined in the frozen gold rulebook.

    For my side, I always preferred xbows in 1.3 and before because of the longer short range. This is mitigated significantly by the accurate order.
    The extra pip of AP is not insignificant, and if going second (or in some deployment types) the range is less of an issue.
    Crossbows probably suit me personally better, but generally I think I would take a unit of each before taking two units of one of them
    Dear DanT
    Do I understand you correctly that the definition in the rulebook makes changes problematic?

    How do you feel about unwieldy and the rather high malus it gives - creating a defacto immobile unit (with regards to shooting), thus disabling the ability to (re)position smart for the parent support system?

    Some of my frustration also comes from seeing other armies having more multipurpose efficient shooters (though ofte more expensive, dwarves and elves), that comes with light armor and shields etc.
    and I still believe; Light infantry should fight and shoot in 3 ranks, FREE command groups for EoS units. Imperial Guards should have weaponmaster and both parent and support, and that halbardiers should wear heavy armor. Brace for impact should be changed to, or there should be an extra order: " Have at THEM!" The unit gain battle focus.
    For Sunna and the Emperor!!
  • Smythen wrote:

    Dear DanTDo I understand you correctly that the definition in the rulebook makes changes problematic?

    How do you feel about unwieldy and the rather high malus it gives - creating a defacto immobile unit (with regards to shooting), thus disabling the ability to (re)position smart for the parent support system?

    Some of my frustration also comes from seeing other armies having more multipurpose efficient shooters (though ofte more expensive, dwarves and elves), that comes with light armor and shields etc.
    Didn't I cover this in 2017? :P
    Unwieldy is the reason that their damage output/point is soo good.
    A game where everyone has super mobile shooting is less interesting.
    I think the way light infantry play currently is perfectly fitting for EoS, and I include at least 1 unit in every EoS list I write. I consider this to be a significant victory compared to the (literally) years where they were terrible.
    I don't really understand the elf/dwarf comment? They are better trained and more elite than light infantry, as they should be. The strengths of light infantry are how they work with the army as a whole and the characters leading it, not their centuries of practice with 3 different weapons.
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  • @DanT
    The elf dwarf comment is pointed towards the fact, that their shooters most of the time are of better use in playstyle of counterchargesm because they can withstand charges just by their sheer stats and equipment. Were as light troops can be destroyed be even the lowliest of chaff. (Maybe not so much more due to parent steadfast, but that is a bit situational and is immobile).

    I have seen units of 10 dwarves fight of 5 electoral cavalry, its around a 50/50 scenario.
    and I still believe; Light infantry should fight and shoot in 3 ranks, FREE command groups for EoS units. Imperial Guards should have weaponmaster and both parent and support, and that halbardiers should wear heavy armor. Brace for impact should be changed to, or there should be an extra order: " Have at THEM!" The unit gain battle focus.
    For Sunna and the Emperor!!
  • Smythen wrote:

    @DanT
    The elf dwarf comment is pointed towards the fact, that their shooters most of the time are of better use in playstyle of counterchargesm because they can withstand charges just by their sheer stats and equipment. Were as light troops can be destroyed be even the lowliest of chaff. (Maybe not so much more due to parent steadfast, but that is a bit situational and is immobile).

    I have seen units of 10 dwarves fight of 5 electoral cavalry, its around a 50/50 scenario.
    Sure. I don't understand the problem.
    Men in striped pyjamas with guns do badly in vicious melee, who knew?! :P
    EoS flexibility is (mostly) not about individual units being multi-role, because that requires an inappropriate level of eliteness.
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  • @DanT Generally I do agree with you. And I overall like the spot that EoS is in and the rules for light infantry. I just really lack the ability to shuffle the unit to create angles for countercharges, while retaining the ability to hit a sleeping giant at 5 paces. A swiftreform without penalties would not be too much IMHO.
    and I still believe; Light infantry should fight and shoot in 3 ranks, FREE command groups for EoS units. Imperial Guards should have weaponmaster and both parent and support, and that halbardiers should wear heavy armor. Brace for impact should be changed to, or there should be an extra order: " Have at THEM!" The unit gain battle focus.
    For Sunna and the Emperor!!
  • Smythen wrote:

    @DanT Generally I do agree with you. And I overall like the spot that EoS is in and the rules for light infantry. I just really lack the ability to shuffle the unit to create angles for countercharges, while retaining the ability to hit a sleeping giant at 5 paces.


    A swiftreform without penalties would not be too much IMHO.
    I disagree.
    And I think you would not like the accompanying price change: their lack of manoeuvrability is a clear and strong weakness to the unit, which enables counterplay to them. This had a strong effect on getting their price as low as it is (does anything do more damage at range point for point assuming optimum positioning?). Anything that mitigates this weakness is likely to cause internal balance problems in EoS core and ultimately result in a price rise.

    I think if you spend a lot of time thinking about how to use light infantry, how to use the rest of the army around them, and playing lots of games with them, these experiences will help you with the issues you have with them.
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  • Looking at this thread, everyone, even the ones who think handguns are ok, prefers the crossbows. Guys, we have to find a solution, or one of the most iconic weapons of our army will be reduced to niche use.

    Here's a couple of ideas that I think would work:

    - Make handguns 1 point cheaper.

    - Special rule: Battle drill
    A unit of handgunners containing a full command group lose unwieldy.

    - Imperial weapons: Bayonet
    Empire handguns get AP1 in close combat.


    Please explain to me, why none of these ideas are preferable to our current situation?
  • In my opinion the performance of crossbows and hangduns is very close. A minor advantage due to range for crossbows, but in my opinion less than a whole point. Of course we could add some buff to handguns as they had in the past, but this should be a realy minor buff. Nothing that makes them more important.

    Light infantry currently has a very low price for shooting units, and it can be taken in huge numbers.
    And the example of dwarf handgunners beeing able to fight of some cavalry unit...this unit also costs a LOT more points, and has exactly the same output on range. It is a little bit harder to kill them, but having 17 models instead of 10 for the same points could help, especially because there are a lot of ways to buff the light infantry on range (accurate, shooting from 3 ranks, magic), while there is NO way to buff the dwarfen shooting.
  • Bloody MIsfire wrote:

    Looking at this thread, everyone, even the ones who think handguns are ok, prefers the crossbows. Guys, we have to find a solution, or one of the most iconic weapons of our army will be reduced to niche use.

    Here's a couple of ideas that I think would work:

    - Make handguns 1 point cheaper.

    - Special rule: Battle drill
    A unit of handgunners containing a full command group lose unwieldy.

    - Imperial weapons: Bayonet
    Empire handguns get AP1 in close combat.


    Please explain to me, why none of these ideas are preferable to our current situation?
    I disagree with some of your premise.
    I said I would take one unit of each before taking 2 of the same.
    That doesn't seem like a bad situation than me.
    I also stated that I thought the difference between them was worth less than 1 pt.


    Be aware that nothing other than points will change in the EoS book now until the FAB is done, and my guess would be we are not first in line for that.
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  • @DanT

    As explain i dont think we can solve this issue with point cost.
    If you reduce handgun cost enough to make internally viable VS crossbow, it will become externally OP.
    and there isent a real reason to make it cheaper.

    Its a design issue, that will need to wait for the FAB.

    I have put finger on it immediatly when the change on order was made. The ACS tell me try try you will see ...
    But i have try and see that my first analyze was the right one ;)

    I also take sometime one of each. .. but its more for the fun and fluff.
    As soon i want to be really competitive, crossbow is a better risk/reward.
    cas-p.net / graphic & web designer.
    SE - VS - O&G - EoS / 9th age player.
  • Casp wrote:

    As soon i want to be really competitive, crossbow is a better risk/reward.
    I disagree with this statement.
    I think the correct statement is far more nuanced than that, and I stand by my statement that I would take 1 of each before 2 of the same.

    Anyone got any actual usage data on these guys?
    Preferably correlated with performance?

    Regardless, I need to go spend my time on RT matters now.
    I will leave you guys to engage in elaborate discussions about why Dan is wrong about this one :)

    I promise to flag them to the relevant people when it is EoS FAB time.
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  • Litoperez wrote:

    I would love that in the future, changes do not mean cheaper troops, because I already have too many miniatures and I shouldn have more...;)

    Just make things better.
    You're probably not playing the right army then ;) *SCNR*

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  • Bloody MIsfire wrote:

    So, all of you guys who would pick a unit of each if you were to bring two units; which unit would you pick if only bringing one?
    Crossbow without a doubt. How many times I found my handgunners completely useless due to range (If you don't move you cannot fire, If you move, you loose a turn by hitting on a 6 and next turn , you will be crippled by opponent warmachines and his light shooter go back to be out of range)
    This is really a concept design problem
  • Bloody MIsfire wrote:

    So, all of you guys who would pick a unit of each if you were to bring two units; which unit would you pick if only bringing one?
    Crossbows as well.

    The point really is, that 24'' range is also exactly the default range for two armies to be apart on classic deployment (sure some deployments are apart less, but four out of six are, and on counterthrust the enemy can easily deploy around that).

    Let's get hypothetical: If Crossbows had huge range like 40'' and Handguns just enough to consistently shoot first turn without moving (like 27''), I might actually use Handguns instead. But the downside of not being able to consistently fire on the first turn when starting is just too big, because if you have Magic Missiles and other War Machines, you usually absolutely want to go first. The Handguns theoretically have more output, but when you can't shoot Turn 1 at all, the output of Crossbows actually becomes bigger, since they shoot three times, compared to the two times of the handguns until a charging opponent actually arrives at your line or in CC.

    So if you want to fix this, you need to make it so, either
    a) Handguns actually put out more damage in that scenario (going first and enemy charging your (gun) line).
    b) Handguns offering something else than additional AP which balances the range difference and the lack of first turn shooting option.

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  • Bloody MIsfire wrote:

    So, all of you guys who would pick a unit of each if you were to bring two units; which unit would you pick if only bringing one?
    No.

    I am a heavy player of light troops.
    i did good result in turnament with them (even in 1.3 when everybody was saying they was bad). And Well.. If i want to be competitive:
    1 unit = crossbow.
    2 units = 2 crossbow
    3 units = 2 crossbow, 1 handgun

    I sometime play 1 crossbow 1 handgun.. jusy because i prefer my model of handgunner ^^.. But its for fun.

    The small additional dead that can do the ap2, could never compet with the number of additional turn of shoot i get with crossbow during a turnament and without speaking about the target choice.
    cas-p.net / graphic & web designer.
    SE - VS - O&G - EoS / 9th age player.