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Mathhammer Tactica (or Warhammer Probability 101) To put it simply, Mathhammer is the calculation of probability of an event occur ring

in Warhammer (40k in all examples, having never played Fantasy myself I do not know their rolling conventions though I suspect that they're much the same.) This tactica is designed to inform the reader how to do their own Mathhammer an d provide a few common examples. Percents are the easiest common format to compa re probabilities but fractions do not have rounding so calculations will be done in fractions with results converted to percent for your convenience and rounded to the nearest percent. When doing mathhammer on the fly I find it's easier to work in percents in my head but that's personal preference. This guide in its entirety takes a decent understanding of fractions and general algebra to understand, but for those of you not so mathematically inclined the quick reference sections are in bold and give you a good many examples of probab ilities. Mathhammer is by no means the end all. We've all seen dice do strange strange th ings. This is merely what will happen on average, and so is useful for determini ng if your unit can take theirs if you charge it in melee. Starting with the easiest: probability of getting X or higher on a single d6, wh ich is typically what you need to roll to hit, wound, make armor saves, etc. Jus t divide the number of successful faces of the die by 6 (the total number of fac es on a six-sided die.) So if you need a 3+, then you'll succeed on a 3,4,5, or 6 for a total of 4 faces. 4/6 = ~.66 = ~66% (the ~ means approximately.) Quick reference: 6+ = 17% 5+ = 33% 4+ = 50% 3+ = 66% 2+ = 83% RE-ROLLS----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Twin-linked weapons and other rerolls: The most common mistakes I see in mathham mering (and have made myself in the past) are with rerolls. In statistics we're all taught that the probability of one event or another happening is the sum of the probability of each. Rerolls seem like they fit this mold, but that's not ac tually true. What a reroll is actually saying is "What is the probability of the event happening on a second roll given that it didn't happen on the first roll? " So for a normal OR statement like what is the chance of 2 different space mari ne attacks hitting then you find if the probability of each of them out of occur ring out of 100% (all possible results.) When using a reroll instead of a separa te, independent second roll, you're figuring out the probability of the event oc curring given that it didn't occur on the first roll. So you calculate the first probability out of 100% (aka 1 aka 6/6) and the reroll out of the probability o f the first roll failing which is 100% minus the probability of the event happen ing on the first roll and then you add those two probabilities together in your OR statement. The calculation goes something like this for the probability of a tau gun drone' s (BS 2) chance to hit with its twin-linked pulse carbine: 2/6 chance to hit (ne eds a 5 or a 6 to hit with BS 2), so you take that number and subtract it from 1 to find the chance of the first roll failing and then find 2/6ths of that and t hen add them together like so: 6/6 (aka 1) - 2/6 (probability of hitting on the first die) = 4/6 (remaining probability). 2/6 (probability of hitting on one die

) X 4/6 (remaining probability from first equation) = 8/36 (probability of hitti ng on the second die given that the first die was a miss). Now add them together : 8/36 + 2/6 = 8/36 + 12/36 = 20/36 = ~.56 = ~56%. The probability of a tau gun drone's shot hitting is about 56%. Quick reference for twin-linked or other reroll if failed: 6+ = 31% 5+ = 56% 4+ = 75% 3+ = 89% 2+ = 97% This works for things like feel no pain or anything that has a chance of happeni ng if the first roll fails as well, even though they are individually different probabilities. You still find the probability of the first event failing (which is 1 minus the chance that the first event will succeed) and then still find the probability of the second thing happening out of that. For FNP it's easy since it's 4+ or 50%, you just halve the probability of failing the first save and add that to the first save's probability to figure out your probability for shruggi ng off that wound (so for space marines in power armor with FNP they shrug off 8 3% of the wounds they take, the same as if they had a 2+ armor save like termina tors.) TO HIT/WOUND/SAVES-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Now this is all well and good for determining individual shots or attacks or sav es, but Warhammer is about units fighting. For many rolls, just multiply the pro bability of each individual result happening by how many dice you're rolling to get how many times it's probably going to happen overall. How many BS 3 lasgun s hots are probably going to hit out of 20 being fired? .50 (which is 50%) X 20 = 10. Actually killing enemy models takes more than just hitting though. Each shot has a chance to hit, a chance to wound, and a chance to get shrugged off by the tar get's armor. To find the probability of a shot or attack actually wounding the t arget, you take the probability of hitting, the probability of wounding, and the probability of them failing their saving throw, and multiply them all together. If rerolls aren't involved (no twin-linked, preferred enemy, FNP, master-crafte d, etc.) then there's an easy way to figure this out based on the idea that 3 fr actions all with a denominator of 6 (probability of hitting, wounding, and faili ng save) multiplied together will have a denominator of 216 (6 X 6 X 6). So take how many faces on each roll will be successful, multiply them together, and the n divide by 216 We'll use a marine sergeant (BS 4) firing a bolt pistol (strength 4) at a chaos marine (toughness 4, armor save 3+) as the example. BS 4 means 4 faces of the di e will be successful (3,4,5,6), strength 4 vs. toughness 4 means that 3 faces of the die will be successful (4,5,6), and armor save 3+ means that 2 faces of the die that the chaos player rolls will be unsuccessful (1,2). 4, 3, and 2 faces. 4 X 3 X 2 = 24. 24/216 = ~.11 = ~11%. How many BS 3 bolter shots therefore will it take to kill a chaos space marine? Instead of dividing 24 (or whatever number you got by multiplying hit, wound, and failed save together) by 216, divide 216 by 24 and this gives you how many shots/attacks it will take on average. 9 in t his case. 8 bolter marines and a sergeant with bolter will on average kill 2 cha os space marines from 12" or fewer away (2 shots each due to rapid fire, so 18 s hots, which is twice as many shots as it takes to kill a CSM on average). This is known as the 216 method, and was taught to me by the mathhammer blog htt

p://mathhammer.blogspot.com/ LEADERSHIP--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Sometimes in warhammer you test using two dice. In this case, your basic range o f results go from 2-12 instead of 1-6, and instead of probabilities being out of 6 they're typically out of 36 (which is the denominators multiplied together so 6 X 6.) It's a little more complex but the same principles apply. Finding the n umber of successful or unsuccessful facings is a little more work, as you've bas ically got to figure out how many successful/unsuccessful results out of 36 poss ible dice combinations there are. If you're doing a leadership test for leadership 8, for example, then you fail i f both dice roll a 6, if die one rolls a 5 and if die two rolls a 6, if die one rolls a 6 and if die two rolls a 5, if both dice roll a 5, if die one rolls a 6 and die two rolls a 4, if die one rolls a 4 and die two rolls a 6, if die one ro lls a 4 and die two rolls a 5, if die one rolls a 5 and die two rolls a 4, if di e one rolls a 6 and die two rolls a 3, and if die one rolls a 3 and die two roll s a 6. That's 10 results total (I said it was a pain, didn't I?). 10/36 is your probability of failure, so 26 out of 36 is your probability of success, which is ~.72 or about 72%. My record for making this on my Tau falls somewhere around 4 0% it feels like. Quick reference for leadership tests: 10 = 92% 9 = 83% 8 = 72% 7 = 58% 6 = 42% 5 = 28% 4 = 17% 3 = 8.3% 2 = 2.8% The good news is that now that we've got a fraction to work with figuring out th e probability of making it with a reroll (icon of chaos glory, warlocks with emb olden, etc.) is pretty much cake. Let's say there's a warlock with embolden lead ing a squad of guardians, so they're using his Ld of 8. As above, the probabilit y of making it on the first roll is 26/36 and failing is 10/36. Multiplying the chance of failure on the first roll times the chance of making it gives us 260/1 296. 26/36 + 260/1296 = 936/1296 + 260/1296 = 1196/1296 = ~.92 = ~92%. Pretty da rn good chance, pretty much as if they had Ld 10. Quick reference for rerollable leadership tests: 10 = 99.3% 9 = 97.2% 8 = 92.3% 7 = 82.6% 6 = 66.0% 5 = 47.9% 4 = 30.6% 3 = 15.9% 2 = 5.5% EXTRAS--------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------The scatter die is 6-sided, with 2 sides being hits, and while we cannot calcula

te what direction it's likely to go (all directions being equally likely), we ca n calculate its chance of landing on target or its chance of landing near enough to a target to hit it. Once again I direct you to the mathhammer blog for a goo d explanation so I don't have to type out my own Using these general principles you should be able to calculate The probability o f chance or failure. You can simulate 2 forces meeting in combat with some accur acy, and have an idea of what your forces can take on even if you've never faced a particular unit before. Now let's talk about mitigating this all with point cost. Which unit is more eff ective for its points? There are many things that go into this but killing power certainly is one. To figure out how many points you're paying to get a particul ar result on average the formula goes like so: (cost of shooting thing)/(number of shots)/(rate of hitting)/(rate of getting re sult) example: for the hydra flak tank shooting at armor 10 and getting a penetrating hit 75/4/.75/.5 = 50 Doing the math hydras are 150 points to get a penetrating hit on average vs. AV 12 and 75 for any roll on the vehicle damage table. Vendettas are 115.6 points t o get a penetrating hit and 87.5 points to get any roll on the table. Against AV 10 hydras are 50 points per penetrating hit and 37.9 points for any roll on the vehicle damage table while vendettas are 69.4 points per penetrating hit and 57 .8 points for any roll on the table.