Bell of Lost Souls posted an article titled “40K: Rules Conundrum – Imperial Knight Edition” which looks at some of the rules questions posed by the new Imperial Knights. I’d like to offer my own take on answering those questions, as well as adding another question or two. I recommend you read their article and then reference it while reading this one, as I’d rather not just copy their entire article here.
I think it’s pretty clear that Strikedown is meant to apply to close combat attacks, not shooting attacks. Arguing that it’s ambiguous as to what constitutes “an attack” is just trying to play with words to get a result that isn’t intended.
2. “Shields Up?”
Yeah, if you’re going with RAW, then you’re not going to get to raise the shield before being hit with Interceptor fire. This is rarely going to be an issue, but hey, if you’re outflanking with a super heavy walker, you’re already getting something pretty freaking awesome and shouldn’t feel so bad that someone might be able to get a shot or two off without you being able to raise your shields immediately.
3. “Hips Don’t Lie”
The only weapon that should be a concern is the hull-mounted heavy stubber, given that the arm is able to swing in a wide arc with your big gun of choice. In theory, you could argue that a Knight could swing around and fire in a 360 degree arc during its Shooting Phase. This shouldn’t be too much of an issue anyway, as your Knight is likely to be facing its front armor at the most dangerous threat, which is often what you want to be shooting at. If your enemy has a nastier target behind your Knight than in front of it, you might be having some issues with your battle plan.
4. “Who’s on First?”
While a barrage is resolved against side armor (representing the top armor), it makes sense to apply it based on the direction the shot was coming from. So, for example, if a shield was up on the right side of the Knight, but the barrage came from the front, then the shield wouldn’t apply; if the shield was raised on the front, however, it would apply.
5. “All Your Base…”
Knights should be treated as denial units just as they’re scoring units. While they aren’t listed specifically as such, it would be silly of them to hold an objective but not contest one, leaving a minor Troops choice to claim an objective they would otherwise be claiming. The rulebook might say vehicles are not denial units, but the rulebook also doesn’t state that vehicles are scoring units, either. The Knights are an exception to this, in order to make them a viable army.
I would like to add the following:
6. Assaulting a New Target
There is nowhere that it states whether a super-heavy vehicle has to charge the same unit it fired at. While some people would claim it has to, this then presents the question of “WHICH unit that it fired at does it have to charge, then?” Super-heavy vehicles can split fire and target multiple units. It makes sense, then, that it would be able to designate yet another target as one to assault.