Thursday, December 2, 2010

Overlooked & Underused Rule Time - Buildings

I know this is a ruin and not a 'building' but he's SOOOO cute!!!
 I know that each gaming area / metagame is subject to its own generalities, but I was looking through the rulebook last night (playing someone in vassal that didn't have much of a clue) post-game and came across my old friend, The Building section.

I love buildings. I have built many of them (as you can see in past blog entries) and something in my brain makes me build them (and my vehicles, and of late, my infantry) modular. I like having buildings that you can actually put models into. At one point I even had a garage being worked on. That got discarded or lost in a move along the way.

It's all too easy to say "that's impassible terrain" when you see an intact building on the field, and I'm guilty of this as well. Buildings add a definite tactical advantage to the battlefield, especially if you can find one with an address that's already inside your deployment zone. Heavy weapons or snipers? Excellent choices to place in a building. Usually these units are weaker in close combat and they get to lock/barricade the door on that building and this keeps them safe from that. Unfortunately you have to look out for those big guns as they try to bring that building down on your head. So bring a shovel!

I know the tournament scene doesn't usually support the Buildings rule, and that's probably why most people overlook or don't use this rule. I think I even forgot to use it in my last campaign. It may have been a lack of intact building terrain though, but that was rectified. I've built several buildings since then and made sure to include fire points on most of them. This is important, otherwise those snipers will be nice and safe but be unable to shoot at anything. You are also able to place models on top of the building and they still count as being inside, but at a risk of +1 to damage rolls on the building.

Unlike vehicles, two models may use each fire point in a building, so you don't need too many. Two or three per side is a good number to have. It's also a good idea to have the models covering two sides of the building if the building is at an angle.

Something to note; unlike ruins, buildings do not count as difficult terrain moving up, down or through them.

Watch out for template weapons though, they will inflict d6 hits on your models inside as well as hitting the building itself.

Hopefully this sheds a bit more light on a rule that may have been overlooked by your gaming group.

This has been a public service message from Craftworld Iybraesil.


  1. Nice article on buildings. I too love buildings, but due to the extra complexity of the rules, generally stick to ruins.

    The recent FAQ really irked me by disallowing shots at unoccupied buildings. It used to be a decent way to clear LOS for tanks and such.

  2. I too agree with the disappointment at not being able to target empty buildings, but I'm sure that in the heat of battle, you want to make every shot count...

  3. We recently had a guy go absolutely nuts over a piece of newly acquired terrain. It was an Ertl farm toy- a barn, with removable roof.

    The guy wanted to know what to do with it- was it impassable, could you penetrate it, would it become dangerous, etc etc etc- ALL because it had a functioning roof. Apparently the metagame here says:

    no roof=ruin. Thus, roof MUST = something else. he just could not grok it. I found it more than a little amusing.

  4. I don't use them often, but I think they add different aspects to the game that most folks are missing out on.

  5. Buildings are one of my favourite piece of terrain. A good looking building can really improve the look of a tabletop battlefield. If it lets your troops hide in it and rain fiery death over the rest of the battlefield, so much the better :P