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Caledonian Deathwatch Network

Dear Games Workshop

Image result for harlequin 40k tears image

Dear Games Workshop

Thank you for your recent FAQ. I really appreciate you taking the time to work on the rules as the game develops and deal with issues as they arise. However, (and you knew this was coming), I want to discuss the change to the Flip Belt rule for Harlequins, limiting it to work only in the movement phase.

This has a devastating effect on an army I love, and one I’ve played since the start of 8th edition. 

I think I understand the issue you were seeking to address – the ability to deep strike a model onto the top of a ruin, 9” from any enemy models, but within 1” horizontally. If Flip Belts (or FLY) allowed that model to ignore vertical distance in the assault phase, one need only “roll” a 1” charge.

This is clearly ludicrous and needed to be addressed, and I assume that’s what you had in mind when making these changes. However, the change to Flip Belts (and FLY), has other (perhaps) unintended consequences.Those consequences have nothing to do with how Harlequins interact with terrain, rather it is their (post FAQ) inability to jump over models in the charge and fight phases that neuter the army. By no longer ignoring other models in assault it is harder to “hide” in combat by trapping a model, consolidating from combat to combat becomes much harder, and a simple line of guardsmen stop Harlequins dead in their tracks. 

Was this really what you intended?

One of the great joys of playing Harlequins is that they play very much to the background lore. I have on numerous occasions “danced” through gunlines, moving from combat to combat in a way I image a Troupe of Harlequins doing “in real life”. Troupes are illusive and hard to pin down, and, when played well, devastating. When played poorly, they are the most fragile of glass cannons, as it should be. The change to Flip Belts makes most of this impossible. It removes a lot of the army’s  “flavour”, and turns what should be lighting fast, assassin, acrobats, into flat footed dullards, confounded by the rawest of conscripts standing in front of them. 

And it makes non sense thematically. When trying to suspends ones disbelief and immerse oneself in the game – what happens in the assault phase – do the Players simply switch off their Flip Belts!

This can not be what you intended!

And what makes me even sadder, is that the change to flip belts removes much of the skill in playing and countering the army. In the charge and fight phases, positioning, order of operations and movement are crucial. When playing with Harlequins, doing it well makes the difference between tearing through a gunline, and dieing horribly under a flurry of bolter rounds. When playing against Harlequins, doing it well makes the difference between ripping the pointy eared “prancers” apart with lazgun fire, and dieing before you know you’re dead!

My point is, the change takes a lot of skill out of both playing Harlequins and playing against them. In effect it “dumbs down” the army and the game!

Can I please ask you to think again?

Happy to discuss further


One Response to “Dear Games Workshop”

  • Brian Ellis says:

    Hit the nail on the head. In order to address one specific concern, they make a change that ruins the flavor and usability of another unit that needed help, not to be nerfed. When they created the rules for the Harlequins they surely didn’t intend for them to be charging headlong into a line of guardsmen or termagants. These boys and girls cost 13 points base for a unit with a 4++ and T3. We paid for their combat acrobatics, but now we’re paying for nothing.

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