Indeed and i'mashamed not to have think about it myself…
I will go to the chapel and confess my sin of ignorance to the chaplain, then I will beat the weakness out of my flesh and mind….
But to be pure enough I need one more answer, if smite work only on living things do it works against NPC or PC with machine trait?
While I'm hardly a rules authority, I would say it depends. For something that is totally robotic like a Necron I woudl say no, but for something like a Tech Marine or your 'average' tech priest, I would say yes.
The Smite power is defeated by something as humble as a van. Smite has no effect on non living targets. Without the ability to penetrate people inside a Rhino or the above van, its easy for them to duck back inside with a Challenging Dodge test. Facign an armored vehicle is not outside the realm of possibility for a deathwatch kill-team. Besides it might encourage people to actually use a melta-gun or missile launcher in a game.
It's a good point, and certainly a fun way to have the NPC's out think the party, it does still suffer from the fact that the once the Rhino has been popped, the smite is going to nuke those that are left quickly enough if the book version is used (plus it'll be a bit boring to have to have a vehicle in every fight to balance smite).
And technically, a large smite, even if they are standing by the door way, the opponents aren't going to have a high enough agility bonus to get back out of the way of the blast (it'll just going into the back of the rhino after all).
I've read that the whole smite doesn't effect vehicles thing is still open to debate too, what with smite being written before rites of battle, I can certainly see arguments in either direction. Was there every official word on it?
A figure stands in ancient armor, wreathed in a billion screaming souls that encircle him like mist. In it's right gauntlet, Holy Terra blackens and crumbles. The figure smiles for the first time in ten thousand years.
Regardless if it works against vehicles or not, the problem that keeps coming up is how encounters are made. So what? Every encounter is going to feature a Rhino because every bad guy in the world is afraid of the Librarian? While Rhino Hunter Safari might make a great encounter I wouldn't want to make it a must-have feature.
I like the way Smite has been tweaked, I think personally it'll boil down to using the 1d10+PR Pen PR Warp Wep. Psychic Barrage or using Smite as found in Only War.
The term "creature" is nowhere defined in the rules, and in fact in English "living thing" is only one of its meanings. The primary meaning of the word historically until very recently has been "thing."
I don't believe that RAI are that it work only against living beings. (and not daemons? servitors?)
And they can still dodge a Smite with PR 10. Because the power says it affects creatures that are in its range will be affected. This is very different from Blast. Not the whole area is a target, instead every creature gets one attack from the power, which can be dodged. This is a significant difference. Otherwise I think, that they had it given Blast (PR), which they did not. Newer incarnations (from Only War) indicate the same (possible multiple hits, but not undodgeable).
In combination with the Psy Rules from Only War/Black Crusade, I'm rather happy with the actions my player can take. So it is possible for him to unleash a devastating attack, but it is no guaranteed kill, nor is it an action taken lightly, because of the risks involved. This is important for myself, because our group also includes a Devastator. As long as both have different drawbacks and advantages, I'm okay with it.
In the table-top game, Smite is (or at least used to be)
Range 24", Strength 4, AP 2, Assault 4.
This is fairly similar to a Storm Bolter:
Range 24", Strength 4, AP 5, Assault 2.
Does this seem to be a fair compromise i Deathwatch, to treat Smite as a weapon the same way as the Avenger power does (using the revised weapons):
Class: Pistol, Range: 100m, Rate of Fire: S/(PR)/-, Damage: 1d10+9 E, Penetration 10, Special: Tearing, Psychi Power
As a pistol, the Psyker can use it to make a Standard Attack in close combat. However, it's best use is at range.
It's got the same range as a Storm Bolter.
The Rate Of Fire lets the potential of the power scale with Psy rating.
It does the same damage (Pen not withstanding) as bolt weapons.
Penetration is in line with plasma weapons (also AP 2 in the table-top game).