General 40k Shinanigans

Warfare…2k vs 40k and how are things different?

So this is a point of discussion at my FLGS.  What’s realistic?  What makes sense?  Blah blah blah..  So let’s look at warfare in the 40th millennium and compare it to now.



Today, attacks are conducted as such:Now this is simplified.  But there are several key elements: Suppression, Overwhelming fire (aka “fire superiority”), maneuver, and coordination.

NOW, this is NOT simply a comparison.  Here I will discuss, how do you PULL THIS OFF with a 40k unit, or what would a similar flanking attack look like?  It will make some pretty hefty assumptions, but work with me here.  The squad attack diagram also makes hefty assumptions.  It’s a frame.


40k Attack


So does 40k work the same way?  No.  However, the basic concepts remain similar.  This is countered by a larger element, better weapons, etc.  Also it can be countered by different armies.  But a doctrinal basis is the first thing to have in developing a strategy.  I have found that I win often playing “by the seat of my pants” but it is becoming tougher to win with balanced lists this way.  Obviously this is scalable.


Well, thanks for reading.  Will discuss different elements of comparison later.





2 responses

  1. I agree that real life warfare tactics do not directly translate into a table top game, in this case 40K. In the end 40K is an abstraction of warfare; it has to be or else we’d spend weeks playing a single game. Not like I need to tell you what real war is like.

    That being said, I also agree that basic principles can be applied to 40K, like you outlined: approach/movement, the use of cover, supporting/suppression fire, assault and disengaging the target.

    Good topic and good use of diagrams.

    December 28, 2013 at 9:09 am

    • Indeed. It was my aim to align that abstraction with warfare. It can be done, albeit slightly differently. One interesting point of comparison is ratios. The desired attack ratio in the US Army is 3:1. In 40k, that ratio is often vastly skewed. It is one of the great things fortifications an different armies bring to the game as armies assume different roles as the “attacker” and “defender”.

      BFG does something where every race has an aggression score and modifiers. This determines attacker and defender roles but also first turn. Could be neat in 40k.

      December 28, 2013 at 9:42 am

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