Steamroller2024 Update?

After Steamroller 2024 package was released in January there was quite a lot of discussion about uncertainties in the wording. Also the document was apparently supposed to be updated soon. Now after we’ve played games for four months I decided to bring this topic up once again in hope that the update happens. Here I also present the most significant issues we’ve found in the Finnish community and what I’ve read elsewhere including my own thoughts.

*Invasion scenario
This scenario has been found to be fairly unbalanced in favor of the player going 2nd. My understanding is that most tournament organizers do not use this scenario after the first try and it is for a reason. Hopefully it would be at least somewhat adjusted like moving objectives closer to 1st player table edge.

*Wolves at Our Heels scenario
There is a recent ruling on this forum which tells that actually the scenario works completely different than how it is written in SR2024 package. This is that actually the middle objectives do not count for determining who (if any) gets the bonus victory points. Changing this to the rules is an urgent issue.

*Objective Terrain - Hazards
For some reason a player cannot choose a hazard to be objective terrain. This is very strange since you can control terrain 2" outside it anyway. It only limits possible choices and discourages to use hazard terrain as that leads into more unbalanced scenario setups.

*Objective Terrain - General
Objective terrain can lead to a very unbalanced table setup if there’s only one option to choose and this option happens to be 5" toward your opponent. This is especially relevant in Payload scenario which can end up being totally decided by the starting roll. The easiest fix would be to require a table to have always at least two choices for objective terrain. If there’s not then adjust terrain accordingly.

*Moving objectives
In scenarios where objectives are moving there are uncertainties how the objectives actually move and how you can avoid moving if you want. So do you need to block the path with your own models, do you need to block all possible paths with your own models or just can you just move 1.5" to the left and 1.5" to the right to stay in place. The last alternative is probably what it is used most because we don’t have any ruling. By far the easiest fix would be to just put words “up to” before the move amount as that clears all uncertainties.

*Scoring and Moving objectives - Deathclock
Currently the document doesn’t mention at all whose time should we use when determining scoring and moving objectives. Even though against the rules, it has become already de facto tournament standard that the clock is paused at the end of each turn to determine scoring. This doesn’t add too much to the total time and this is by far the most fair way to resolve it so hopefully it would be added to the rules.

*Small polishing
It would be strongly preferable if the maps would include all measurements for both players and also would be in scale. Also it is not immediately clear to less experienced players that in Payload you actually can score objectives but not objective terrain because objective terrain is not an objective. But at the same time you cannot place defenses within 3" of objective terrain because it is an objective. I’m probably forgetting some other similar things so others please add if necessary to help getting the update out.

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Good to see all these issues compiled in one place! Most are quick, easy fixes that will dramatically improve the SR packet.

Even easier would be to always have the option for the flag to stay where it is, as you do when there is no valid terrain within 5".

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Yes, please and thanks.

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A potential fix for the Payload scenario is that the Flags are NOT made into Objective Terrain at all, for this scenario alone. That would in theory mean both players will always have the same distance to move their 50mm to reach the opponents flag (however terrain and models may of course still block that path). That seems like the most fair scenario to me, otherwise it fully depends on the terrain on the table.

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A couple of other fixes I would like to see:

make Cache larger, the tiny 20mm is hard to spot fast on the table and is easily pushed around when moving models.

Change measurements to center of objectives/flags/cache. It’s easier to measure as you can measure from any table edge and for some scenarios you don’t have to make a measurement from another objective piece.

Wild change: allow xl and huge models to stand on top of objectives. With the larger amount of terrain many tables restrict larger bases from going anywhere and scenarios with moving pieces can take this even further

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As a 50 year old player who wears reading glasses, I cannot read the tiny, tiny, tiny numbers on the scenario maps on a smartphone. There is no need for these numbers to be five pixels high, especially when the map consists almost entirely of empty space.

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The last point is going to be hard to implement, since PP makes sets of 3D models for objectives for Mk4.

The main problem is ofc having 120mm bases that move 5" – approximately their own base size - in a skirmish game - they just cannot walk over anything you cannot stand on, but also hard to fix at this point. Perhaps the rules could be changed to have obstacles being destroyed when impacted by 80/120m bases, like Barriers are. It certainly makes no sense - either from a logical or gameplay perspective - that a robot the size of a two story building cannot walk over a small wooden barrel.

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I appreciate the discussion but I think we have to be realistic in here. PP has released models for objectives/caches at a certain size so reworking these kind of things in update will not happen. Maybe for SR2025. I certainly have several things I’d like to get changed (mostly to move away from asymmetry to help setting up) too but I understand that it is not happening now.

The topic is because there are things direly in need of clarification and a couple of scenarios really warranting a change from what the text is. Implementing these should not be impossible given that there was supposed to be an update already. Or at least that’s the impression I’ve got from these forums.

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Count me as onboard for wording clarificarions and presentation improvements.

Thank you so much for taking time to compile your thoughts. I will definitely try to pass this along to the right people, as well make sure always to submit to feedback@privateerpress.com.

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A new issue has been discovered, that is trivial at face value, but actually deeply important to resolve in terms of its impact on the game.

Hope this can make it on the list of tweaks to SR24!

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I like this change a lot. I also think that if the second player 30mm objective will continue to exist it should be central so that the solo can be killed and the objective is easier to contest.

I don’t see how that is an issue at all? It’s perfectly visible on the Two Fronts scenario map that it’s impossible to score both 50mm objectives with a 50mm (or smaller) base.
The issue on that scenario is that you’re supposedly only able to gain +2 for doublescoring both sides (and that it’s not a great scenario due to the amount of points possible scored on each turn).

It’s perfectly visible on the map if you do the math, revealing very narrow margins.

On any physical table, it will most likely be perfectly visible that a 50mm model CAN score both objectives, which is the whole reason this thread exists.

Chuck ruled that we have to play it as is on the table, though there may be a tactical tip added in the future to point out how double scoring is impossible. That would be a nice addition, but could still be discordant with what’s on the table.

A better solution is needed to avoid this problem in the first place.

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Only if you place the objectives wrong. If they’re mostly in the proper position, it should be perfectly ambiguous, considering how close the measurements are.

It should be clear to anyone playing miniature games that when interacting with physical objects on the tabletop, you cannot achieve mathematical precision. Concepts such as “directly towards” or “2-inch distance” are measured using the best human ability.

But, when we know mathematical facts about how things on the table should be positioned, those should be taken into account. If you have two models base-to-base, and one is pushed 1" directly away from the other, the models should still be within a 1" melee range of each other, even if you fail to position the models precisely enough. If there’s a 16" gap between Advance deployment zones, models advancing 6" on Turn 1 should not be able to hit the other side with RNG 10 weapons.

So, we can, and should, accept human inability for mathematical precision when placing and moving models and stuff on the table. But when there’s clear mathematical evidence pointing at what the exact distance between two objects should be, that should be taken into account.

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I agree with you but unfortunately the Infernal answer in the other thread points otherwise. So this is a problem that should be fixed somehow.

The fix I’ve found quite sufficient is communicating with your opponent at all times.

Discuss the placement of objectives, especially if your table isn’t exactly the right size. For example, in Finland we often have 120 cm tables, which is slightly under 48", requiring some adaptation with deployment zones and objective placement. So it’s essential to discuss any table measurements before beginning the game.

State your intent when moving your models (“This model stops at 10.1” away from your model with a 10" threat range, okay?" or “I will stop at the maximum melee range of 2”). This way, if someone bumps the table or a model falls over, it’s easier to agree upon the game’s state.

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Yes. That’s what pretty much everyone generally does but I’ll reply the same as in the topic which was specifically about this issue:

The problem is if something like this happens.

You end up playing against a new opponent in a tournament. On his turn he kills some of your stuff from flank and finally proceeds to run a 50mm warjack in the middle of two objectives. At this point you mention that mathematically it is impossible to score both but your opponent measures the distances and ends up being in. How do you resolve a situation like this without at least one player feeling really bad?

So yes you could’ve resolved this if you had talked about this to your opponent before the game but you just forgot or assumed your opponent has also checked the math. Now it is too late as they have done multiple activations probably for a lot less gain than intended if going by the math solution. Or you are screwed if going by the infernal answer.

This whole discussion is a lot of fuss over some quite hypothetical circumstances. :slightly_smiling_face:

At any rate, the SR packet has addressed this “Infernal ruling” issue for years now:
image

Players are responsible for catching these mistakes because the TO can’t watch every game.

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What this has to do with my example?

The active player has used a lot of activations and killed models on one flank. Then they move 50mm model between two objectives and declares intention to be within both (and measures it). The other player objects because this is mathematically impossible. No points have been scored and will not be scored before this is resolved.

Or are you saying that the correct procedure for non-active player is just pause the clock, move objectives 8.04" (or whatever) distance from each other and continue? Actually I’d be fully onboard with this but we have the infernal ruling saying otherwise.