Faction Abilties

Since it seems that each faction gains some special abilities such the survivors armor tokens or the Super mutants use of ranged weapons in melee, eating food, etc; it appears to my group that the Brotherhood of Steel drew the short stick in this regard since their faction ability is actually a restriction rather than a bonus. For battle games that are based on point balancing this does not seem to really work out; since these abilities do not seem to be factored into the costs of the models after examining their stats (plus there are figures that are used by multiple factions)

I dunno from my experience the BoS seem to have better equipment access and from what I’ve seen shred most any faction because of it. Balance is more than what’s on the card some times.

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But all that equipment they can buy is supposed to be point balanced to begin with. Granted I have not fielded them yet, and I assume they will be brutal shooters, but 250 points of any other faction should have an equal chance at winning against 250 points of BoS. The faction abilities seem to not be in the equation at all. Which would mean the other 2 factions have bonuses, while BoS does not.
Points balanced is points balanced.
Flames of War did a similar thing, but MUCH worse and hobbled the Soviet armies with negative “Bonuses” while other armies got real bonuses. I played Soviets, so kinda sensitive about this stuff now.

I was very surprised when I finally saw the BoS faction card. I was hoping all factions would have a unique bonus to them.

Despite the point values, the BoS does seem to have slightly better ranged combat values overall. The majority of them also have long range weapons.

It’s quality vs quantity we get power armour and laser rifles but we’ll have 5-8 guys to the enemies 15 at 1k.

Use cover and focus one guy down at a time is how you have to fight bos, running in the open and shooting Willy nilly will see you lose badly.

My problem with the rules is that it seems to be completely pointless. I’m still getting my head around the faction system, but it would seem to me there’s two possibilities:

  1. You CAN’T buy models from other factions/lists. If that’s the case, there’s no point printing it as a faction rule; yes, BoS forces can’t take super mutant models which aren’t unique, but they also can’t take survivor models or robots. The ONLY things they can take are BoS models. For that matter, there’s the implicit suggestion that they can include super mutant models which are unique, and as there aren’t any on their list (Frank Horrigan, maybe later?) that suggests option 2:

  2. You CAN buy models from other factions/lists. If that’s the case, while my BoS force can’t include super mutants, there’s nothing stopping my super mutant force including BoS, with the exact same minis that I wanted. If there was a positive effect on the card (say, “Stalwart” that gives them +2 to resist Battle Cries from super mutant units, or “Hatred” that gives a +1 to hit a super mutant in melee), then I’d at least have something to weigh up: do I want to include a super mutant if it means giving up my bonus? As it stands, though, there’s no reason to ■■■■■■■ yourself that way.

So, ultimately, either a Brotherhood of Steel force plays exactly the same as everyone else, and there’s no reason for the rule, or there’s no advantage to playing a Brotherhood of Steel force when you could use the exact same models for no penalty.

As an alternative, I suggest the rule is poorly written, and what they actually mean isn’t a BoS force but a BoS model in a force. That is, while you can generally mix faction models (which I’m still not certain about), you can’t have force with both a non-unique super mutant and a BoS model. That fits thematically, isn’t a rule that applies to all factions regardless, but still prevents being circumvented by playing a different faction.

Edit: And I’m not swearing up there, the word in “no reason to - - - - - - - yourself” is what the video games call it when you injure an arm or leg, and is totally sensible in context. I suspect the filter is being overly zealous and suspects me of discrimination against the differently abled.

Interesting. I have been imposing rules on myself that don’t actually seem to exist in this game. It looks like I could take 3 Paladins in power armor with laser rifles for fire support, 3 Super Mutant Brutes for melee, and Nora, since I like her stats, and Mama What’s-Her-Face for her Foresight abilities. Then pick whatever Faction I want it to be and make one of those faction models the leader, since any model can be a leader and the leader determines the faction, and thus the faction bonus card.
Sounds like Factions need to be fleshed out a bit more in an errata.

I believe they are intended for Battle Mode games, where you have to be from the same faction to hire. In scenario games, that limitation doesn’t exist, which is why BoS have it on their faction cards. In scenarios, they can have survivors.

Edit: Quickly skimmed the battle mode rules and couldn’t see the rule that models have to be from the chosen faction. Anybody have the reference to that handy, or did I imagine it (at work, can’t check in detail)?

You, like me, imagined it since it makes sense that it would be there. But it isn’t there. There isn’t anything on the Force List downloads either, nothing that says “these are the only models you can take,” or anything similar.
It’s a huge hole in the rules we have all been filling in ourselves out of our idea of how it should be.

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Hello, all!
Few thoughts about some models and its place in game.
In the Survivors list we have a Minuteman and in the BoS list we have a Knight Patrol. Minuteman costs 54 pts and KP cost 51 pts (almost equal). Their SPECIAL are almost equal too, but a Minuteman have a special rule, which give him +2 (from 5 to 7) Perception when he near his comrades. In game mechanics it is a good boost for hitting (from 9/20 to 13/20 - almost 45% better) something by shooting. May be it is to much for 3 pts, isnt it?
We have another model in the BoS list - the Lancer. its costs 53 pts and have almost equal SPECIAL whit a Minuteman, but his weapons and item choice are almost empty.
So the BoS infantry with same point cost not equal to the Minuteman infantry. I am understand, that BoS have problem with numbers of men and from PoV of the lore it is maybe normal, but in the first look it maybe not clear.
And it is interesting yours opinion about Knight Patrol and Lancer miniatures - from PoV of their SPECIAL value it is looks like Lancer is more powerfully and usefully then KP. But if you looks at the models - KP is looks much more impressive. In my opinion it is some mismatch here. Lancer looks like someone who needs help and rescue with his suit and high-altitude helmet, but in game mechanics he is more danger than KP, who looks like heavy trooper.
will be glad to know your opinions

There are also rules on the faction card that seem like they should be unit type rules, like immunity to radiation damage. This is a property of robots/super mutant models, not of models in robot/super mutant forces, no? The whole faction business is very confusing and not very well explained.

I totally assumed you were limited to one faction never occurred to me it could be otherwise.

Think we need confirmation that’s how it works but I did think it odd the sole survivor couldn’t join the bos.

I think another sign that one can indeed mix minuatures from different factions is the Enslaved Tech. It clearly states on his card that he is a Survivor, but has a special rule for when he is actually part of a Survivors force. The BoS-faction card also shows that. So while you CAN build a Super Mutant force with BoS models (but except for uniques not the other way around), question remains if you want that. After all, it’s a narrative game :slight_smile:

Well personally I’d never include super mutants or ghouls in a bos force, but being able to take the survivor and companions does appeal.

Unless playing Battle Mode, there are few restrictions as to what you can combine in your force apart from what is in the rules, such as no Creatures (unless your opponent agrees) and the restriction of a Brotherhood force not allowing non-unique Super Mutants. This gives players freedom to tell the stories they want to tell and as the world of Fallout is full of exceptions. (If playing Battle Mode, then the force lists are very strict and defined.) If you want to play a force of Brotherhood that would never allow a Super Mutant in, then you can do that. But players who want to play a story where their BoS includes a named SM can do so (maybe it’s a temporary alliance, etc.).

I will look at the inverse of the BoS rule so that Super Mutants can not include any non-unique BoS, but I need to look at that first.

The faction reference cards are not rules for every model in a faction, but are for models with that faction written on their cards. For example, if an Enslaved Tech was part of a Super Mutant force (because the force has a Super Mutant as its Leader) then it would not benefit from the rules of being immune to radiation, etc. Similarly, the Minuteman Unit is Minutemen faction so does not receive extra Armor Boost tokens if used in a Survivors force. (The slight exception to this is the BoS reference card which mentions the SM restriction but that explicitly states it’s a rule about the force, and it felt odd not to mention it on their reference card.)

The playtesters factored in the benefit of the faction reference card rules into the Units’ caps values. So, whilst BoS don’t have any special rules, they’re not at a disadvantage.

Hope that helps explain the design intent behind things.


Thanks for the confirmation, you guys that spotted this were bang on it seems.

As for bos not getting faction rules I don’t think they need them, decent shooting combined with laser rifles is a strong combo that’s been serving me well.

The faction reference cards are not rules for every model in a faction, but are for models with that faction written on their cards. For example, if an Enslaved Tech was part of a Super Mutant force (because the force has a Super Mutant as its Leader) then it would not benefit from the rules of being immune to radiation, etc.

So only Super Mutants in a Super Mutant force are immune to radiation. But they are already immune to radiation by the X on their cards, no? So the faction card rule is redundant and confusing. Likewise with robots, who are immune to radiation by definition of the “robot” type.

And putting the power armor restriction on the faction card means that if you put a super mutant in a survivor force, they can use power armor. Is that the intent? But this doesn’t apply to robots, because robots as a type are already forbidden from using power armor. So again in that case the faction card rule is redundant.

@cfmcdonald I interpret your Power Armor example as the exact opposite. The faction cards apply to all units of that faction, regardless of what other units they are in combined with.

So, putting a Super Mutant into a force composed of BoS, does NOT give that Super Mutant any of the abilities on the BoS faction card. It still retains the abilities listed on the Super Mutant faction card.

@noderunner, my understanding is that’s not the way it works. The faction abilities apply to any units of that faction in a force of that faction. The force of a faction is defined by a leader. So if you have a force with 3 survivors and 3 super mutants, and the super mutant is the leader, the super mutant faction card applies to the 3 super mutants in the group. The survivor faction card does not apply to the 3 survivors in the group.

That also seems like a reasonable interpretation. Can we get this clarified? Do faction abilities always apply, or do they only apply if they leader of the force matches the same faction as the unit? And, does this work differently between Battle Mode and Story Mode?