Today we have a couple of tough rules questions from a reader. These are some of tougher rules issues you can come across, and are sometimes used by rules lawyers to bully their opponents. Scout moving smoke launchers and Pain tokens issues regarding Beastmasters.

Rules of Our Game is a weekly post regarding rules problems. I run across tons of rules questions each week, and I think almost every person in our hobby should keep an eye out for things like these. It helps us when we finally come across such problems or weak spots in the rules of the game. Comments and "Your Wrong!" are very appreciated with this series, as navigating the rules of our game can be quite treacherous.


Once again since I did not really get authorization to use the name, it is left anonymous. If he/she is interested in saying who he was he can leave that in the comment section.

Hi there,
first of all let me say thank you for the time and effort you put into being the No.1 ressource for 40k news and rumours.

Now for that other great category on your site, Rules of our Game, I have 2 questions:

1. At a my local club a Blood Angels player had first turn, scouted forward with his Baal Predator, used smoke (that's ok and in the FAQ). I failed to seize, so he still had first turn. He shot all weapons with his predator and when I shot him in my first turn, he claimed to have his 4+ save because of still being concealed by smoke. Now, the FAQ states that he can smoke after scouting and the rulebook says that the smoke wears off after the enemies first shooting phase, concealing him and on the other hand the rules state that you can't shoot after smoking (which he did during his scout move, not his first turn). But still, to me this is some WAAC interpretation and not as intended because you can either be in a big bubble of smoke OR you can shoot. Do you see any arguments for my side (apart from the "that's not how it was intended"-one)?

2. I'm still a bit confused by the mixed rules of the Dark Eldar Beastpacks:
a. So, Razorwings are a swarm, giving them a 3+ cover-save instead of a 4+? Sounds ok to me since you can have mixed armor-saves in a single unit as well.

b. They don't get FnP or FC from pain tokens because they don't have Power through Pain. But what about Fearless? According to the rulebook, when an IC joins a non-fearless unit he loses fearless. But my Beastmasters are not an IC and therefore shouldn't lose it. Also, you always use the highest Ld in a unit, in this case the Ld8 of the Beastmasters. Is Fearless the highest Ld so my 3-pain token-Beastpacks are immune to tank shocks etc. as long as a Beastmaster lives?

Any help would be appreciated!

Thanks in advance,

Dark Eldar Beastmasters
Lets take number 2 first, since it is the easiest of the two. The Beastmasters in your unit come with the power from pain rule. These models will receive the benefits of the rule, while the "beasts" will not.

So what does that do to your unit? First off the beastmasters will receive Feel no Pain from a single pain token, the "beasts" will not recieve any benefits because they do not come with power from pain and cannot benefits from pain tokens. When they receive 2 tokens, the beastmasters models will have furious charge. When they get three does the unit become fearless? Yes. They do so because the unit does not lose the USR because the beastmasters are not an independent character. A single fearless model in the unit gives that unit fearless, as long as it is not an independent character.

Regarding fearless units, you automatically pass morale checks, so a beastmaster unit with 3 tokens automatically passes the tank shock.

Scout Moves and Popping Smoke
This is a fun one as it falls into one of those grey areas. As a player that uses scout moves all the time, this is not something I have ever tried on an opponent (a little rude, and in a friendly game someone insistent on it, I might not continue the game). Here are the relevant rules;

Smoke Launchers
The vehicle may not fire any of its weapons in the same turn as it used its smoke launchers, but will count as obscured in the next enemy shooting phase, receiving a 4+ cover save.

What the player is declaring is that they are allowed to shoot in the above scenario, because they did not pop smoke during this turn, and that they are allowed to keep the smoke during the enemy shooting phase no matter when that occurs.

Scout moves allow you to take a normal movement phase, which is what allows them to use their smoke launchers. So is the player correct in doing what he did. Yes. I think the rules "as written" are bad in this scenario. Just so you are aware the INAT definitely rules out smoke launchers having a lasting effect like this, but the INAT are a custom rule set and not commonly accepted (they break a lot of standard rules).

Most players you will come across will just tell you that their smoke is gone after they take their first turn. In a tournament I would simply call over a judge, and if there is a sportsmanship comp system in place, no points.

Your ammunition against this is pretty small since it falls into the cracks and breaks the rule system. I have heard this argument before, and there is probably something I have missed, but it is one of those sore spots I wish would get an faq. Perhaps someone else has a good answer to this one?