Sideboarding 40k: Should Tournaments allow this to happen?



The Diversity of Armies in a Tournament

Warhammer 40k has become one of the most diverse games in tournament play. There are those who will argue that the “cheese factor” has gone up, that the chase for new models has accelerated only sales for GW or that some players can’t compete because of the new shiny toys. While there are some valid points to be made there, I love the new state of the game(and hell I am an Ork player.). So I propose that Tournaments start to allow something a little different to their games. A sideboard. 250 points that can be substituted point for point against another opponent.

Magic Accepts the idea

Long before Wizards of the Coast accepted the idea of Sideboarding local shops and some smaller tournaments were using the idea. Why have a game where by simply sitting down across from your opponent meant that you lost? In July of 2013 Magic decided to allow, for the first time, players to sideboard cards in the standard format. Now you could be facing an opponent that had a specific deck that could beat yours, but sideboard in cards that could help you make a comeback and vice-versa. The new system allowed for more diverse decks and a richer tournament scene.

How to do it

While Magic allows for a player to change up to 25% of his/her cards that would be a bit overwhelming and clunky for large format tournament play and 1850 points(the standard play for the 40k tournament). Instead I suggest that we allow for the following rules:

1.) Up to 150 points can be exchanged out.
2.) You can not exchange a non Objective Secure Unit out for an Objective Secure unit,
3.) All “free” dedicated transports that are bought with a unit from play must also be removed. This would allow for players to exchange a rhino for a drop pod essentially.
4.) Formation and detachment Rules must be adhered to. You can not remove a formation unit or detachment unit from play unless the entire formation is removed. If a new formation replaces the old one, all rules in the new formation must adhere to the new rules.
5.) No Desperate Allies or Come the Apocalypse Allies may be substituted into an army.
6.) The Warlord can not be exchanged out.
7.) An opponent who chooses not to use their sideboard against an opponent who does receives a +1 to seize the initiative.

Why this will work

I’ve seen quite a few games out there that are over before it began. While 150 points won’t solve a lot of the issues that come in mismatches, it will certainly help,

What do you think? Leave a comment below.



2 Replies to “Sideboarding 40k: Should Tournaments allow this to happen?”

  1. You make some good points but in all honesty sideboarding has been part of Magic tournaments since the beginning, for me that was 1995 and we always built sideboards even then. It would be an interesting part of 40k to allow it. You could do something like after opponent deploys and makes the choice to go first or not then the 2nd player could switch in/out up to 250 points or whatever the agreed upon total is for a game. In this fashion the person going second can gain some advantage to help deal with opponent’s alpha strike.

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