One of my biggest pet peeves within the rules of 5th edition 40k was the Line of Sight segment. Of course, this is one of the few parts of the rules GW decided to simply copy and paste into sixth. So, while others gripe about double Force Organization Charts, Fliers and Allies, here's why the Line of Sight rules are next to unusable.
A model draws Line of Sight from it's eyes (Big Bloody Book, p. 8).
I'll let that sink in.
And then I'll show you this picture.
|Do, please, point out the eyes. And no, the squiggly line does not count.|
Also, the rules fail to specify what counts as eyes. Do the lenses in a Crisis Suit count? The shiny orb at the front of a Canoptek Scarab? Can we be sure there are eyes under that mask thing the Talos has?
And lastly, the rule says 'eyes'. Plural. Which not only screws over models with just one eye - like Deathmarks, for example - but makes it all but impossible for models such as the Carnifex (whose eyes point in different directions) to see anything.
Line of Sight is drawn to a models body - its head, torso, arms and legs (BBB, p. 8). Also weapon, banners and other ornaments are ignored, as are wings, tails and antennae.
This works fine for infantry that is vaguely humanoid. It even works for most Monstrous Creatures and Tyranids. It does not work for models whose parts are not easily defined by the above terms, or for bikes. It is also unclear on where, exactly, the line between body and not-body is drawn.
Part the first: non-humanoid models.
Does a Canoptek Spyder have a torso? I could argue it has legs, and a head. But if the only bit that is visible is the carapace, is it in Line of Sight? The same goes for Scarabs. What about Spore Mines? Mycetic Spores (even without an official model, it's fairly clear it won't be shaped like a human)?
Part the second: bikes.
|Just to be clear, these images are property of Games Workshop, and used here for purely illustrative purposes.|
Part the third: ill-defined parts.
So tails and wings don't count, nor do antennae. What about the chimney-things on the back of a Carnifex? A Daemon Prince's massive shoulder plates?
And for that matter, what about models that use their tails in a leg-like fashion, like the Sslyth or Canoptek Wraiths? Is a Ravener seriously half as big as a Tyranid Warrior? What part of a Ripper is its tail?
What about tentacles? Where do they fall? Or spikes and horns?
In many ways, vehicles get around the problems I've listed, because they follow their own rules. Some parts of the vehicle rules don't quite fit together, though.
Like wings and antennae on normal models, vehicles' dozer blades don't count as part of the hull (which is what you need to see when targetting a vehicle). Does that mean a Rhino converted from a Vindicator (which I've been wanting to do, for the coolness) can't be seen from the front?
When a vehicle draws Line of Sight, it traces it from the mounting and down the barrel of its weapon (BBB, p. 72). Where does this leave the Monolith's big ugly crystal thing? Can it only shoot things right above it? Same thing with the Exorcist, really. How about other weapons with no barrels, like the Manticore?
And I'm going to stop here. I think I've made my point.
So, until next time: ta.