This week we'll be touching on a VERY hot issue right now, the question about pinning weapons. Haven't heard it yet? Well here it is:
In 4th edition, any amount of wounds inflicted by a squad with pinning weapons required a single pinning test (4th ed RB pg 32). In 5th ed (pg 31) the wording of the rule has changed substantially. One camp suggests that the changed wording means that if a unit with pinning weapon successfully wounds a unit then that unit must take a single pinning test no matter how many wounds they suffered. The other camp says that the new wording clearly indicates that each weapon that successfully wounds the enemy unit at least once requires a pinning test.
Side A - Multiple pinning wounds from 1 enemy unit = 1 test regardless of the number of pinning weapons
Side B - Multiple pinning wounds from 1 weapon = 1 test; multiple wounds from multiple pinning weapons = 1 test per wounding weapon.
Who is right?
(question courtesy of Deathboon from Astronomican)
Ok, here's what page 31 says:
If a unit other than a vehicle suffers any unsaved wounds from a pinning weapon, it must immediately take a Pinning test.Well the ambiguity lies with the word "weapon". What the hell does that mean? Weapon type or a single weapon? If I have a squad of three mortars which cause a wound, do they EACH cause a pinning test (assuming they all cause unsaved wounds) or one pinning test since it's one weapon type in a squad? Very confusing and there are excellent arguments on both sides of this. Let's dig a little more through the rule book though, shall we? The term "weapon" is never clearly defined in the rulebook. It is described as a type of weapon in some sections and as a single weapon in others. Thanks for being clear GW!
Well a paragraph down it mentions the effects of pinning and going to ground. Originally Alex and I skipped past it but came back (because there is NOTHING helpful in this rulebook) and noticed something very particular:
. . . going to ground does not protect it against the fire of the pinning weapon that caused the test (or indeed of any other weapon fired by the same unit that phase). . .Notice something? The term "pinning weapon" is singular, not plural. It references ONE weapon causing ONE test.
Terran Forge final opinion: Never does it specify multiple pinning weapons in a squad, therefore by RAW Alex and I both believe that the wording absolutely, 100% implies that each pinning weapon that causes an unsaved wound in a squad causes a pinning test. That means one squad can cause multiple pinning test. However, that said, we do not believe GW intended it to be this way, but it is what it is (sadly). And as a clarification, that's still one pinning test per weapon, not per unsaved wound!
Disappointing. Alex and I have always believed it to be the opposite of what we have discovered. However, GW did write this book and for tournaments I highly suggest asking the tournament organizer what their official ruling is. Please feel free to send us more questions at email@example.com!