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jp22102000
29-05-2008, 17:18
I was reading another thread and the subject of list tailoring came up and it got me thinking. How do you guys set up your games in your groups and how much list tailoring do you allow, if any at all? In my group, we would each tell our opponent what army list we are going to play then build our armies to face each other. In the other thread people would say this is list tailoring but since both players knows what they are facing beforehand I think it is fair. However looking at a players list THEN making your own to beat it (and not giving your opponent the chance to change his) is clearly wrong in my opinion.

Bloodknight
29-05-2008, 17:26
If both people know that both tailor, there's nothing wrong with it. It gets wrong if one guy only has a small army, the other one a bigger one and he tailors to the small army, knowing that his opponent cannot do so himself, but has to take what he owns. That is just not funny to play, I think (never happened to me, I don't have small armies *g*). In my group, we bring ready-made lists and then randomly determine who plays against whom; that leads to nice balanced armies since we have almost everything at our disposal.

arch_inquisitor
29-05-2008, 17:46
What you guys are doing is not wrong in fact it is quite sporting. but in your other example that game would simply not happen as I would not play this game with such a loser. Besides I'm pretty sure 5th edition has a rule stating explicitly that an army list must be pre-written and shown to your opponent or something along those lines. I intend to strictly enforce this rule if it is so.

Reaver83
29-05-2008, 18:24
I normally work on the principle of having two generic lists with me on games nights, one is a list vs MEQ's and one is a list vs GEQ's.

yabbadabba
29-05-2008, 19:00
For me it comes down to three things:

Tournaments - no.
Campaigns - should have a mechanism in for scouting or should be part of the campaign rules but in essence I have no problems there
1-offs - no not really. It's something to decide with your opponent. It certainly could be seen as a leveller to truly test army selection and tactics.

Gaebriel
29-05-2008, 19:03
None of us has a fixed list, ie we write our lists per engagement. As we're a pretty small group, we have to set up games a couple of days before, so everyone knows what they are up against.

This leads to tailored armies on both sides, as none of us are fans of bringing knives to gunfights. It isn't a balance problem either, as all of us have access to next to all choices from our respective Codexes - what isn't there is allowed to be proxied for test purposes.

Crazy Harborc
30-05-2008, 01:21
We tailor our lists. We (my regular opponents and I) have enough minies to be able to tailor/change our lists game to game.

Never have cared for a army with ONE roster that cannot be changed. From time to time, it has been suggested and we did it. It's just NOT the norm around here.;)

Hicks
30-05-2008, 01:45
In my group, we chose an opponent (or make teams if it's a multiplayer game) and we then make our list. You can try to tailor as much as you want, but each player either owns enough minis for is army to be able to come up with an original list each time, or the player owns more than one army, so you have to guess wich one he'll be using.

Solasun
30-05-2008, 01:48
In my local group I feel like a bit of a black sheep.

I take an all-comers friendly list (sometimes even with a theme!) and that's my list for the night regardless if I play Orcs or Empire.

Of course I may or may not change the list from week to week.

However, the majority of my local group just goes "What point value?" And pulls out a few models, drops them on the table and rolls dice. Some of them tailor either to fun or WAAC (a certain Lizard player will always take a skink horde and swap out the best specials for the army, another HE player will pick RBT's vs RnF but leaves them vs Ogres) and some just tailor as much as possible.

theunwantedbeing
30-05-2008, 02:57
At my local store you use what you turn up with...if you forgot your list then make one so it's legal.

I generally keep to the same list week in week out.
Most people don't though.
List tailoring sometimes happens...it sometimes doesn't.

ehlijen
30-05-2008, 03:23
I try to avoid tailoring. I don't ask what my opponent has and I won't tell him what I'm using until we're both ready to set up. It doesn't always work, if one player has seen the other play already, the cat's out of the bag but mostly it works sorta.

I used to bring pregenerated lists, but people kept having such wide spreads of points values they wanted to play at it became sorta useless. I also like to pick which army to bring just as I leave the house, so much preplanning doesn't work for me.

Codsticker
30-05-2008, 07:03
Genrerally I pick a list and stick with it for a few weeks, then change a few things (or completely scrap it and start again) and play it for a few more. Lately though I am considering tailoring my list for one opponent who has decided that it is OK to use a Baneblade in regular size games.

Thoth62
30-05-2008, 15:01
I usually don't tailor my lists. The most common occurance for me is that I'll write up a take all comers kind of list and bring it down to the store on veterans night for gaming. It makes the most sense because I never know who I'm going to be playing on any given night. If I've arranged a game beforehand, then it's generally accepted practice that we'll both be making slight changes to the list for increased efficiency against each other.

I don't have a problem with it as long as both players know that we'll each be doing it, or is ok with the opponent doing it even if they aren't.

Templar Ben
30-05-2008, 15:20
I am all for list tailoring. To me the game isn't strong enough to have a true competition where my 1500 points takes on your 1500 points and we each know we have a good shot. That is simply not the case as the armies are not equal.

To account for that, if I am going to play 40K I use more narrative games. 1000 points of Terminators vs 1900 points of nids for a "historic" reenactment as an example.

x-esiv-4c
30-05-2008, 15:40
I'll all for it, as long as both sides know what army the other is fielding! otherwise it's just cheap.

Whitehorn
30-05-2008, 16:14
Tailoring vs an army list (ie. knowing a friend only has x choices) is sad.

Tailoring knowing you are fighting a codex - I think is OK IMO. Unless you're playing something like ambush.

Small details like giving Nids +1 save so they wont all auto-die vs bolters make you think 'would I buy this on the small chance I play vs marines?'.

That said I usually play a set core force with 1-2 minor changes depending on what hasn't fallen to pieces in my bag on the night.

Aaron
30-05-2008, 16:50
I don't allow people to tailor their list against my Wood Elfs because I know I'd always have to face the flaming army of death if I allowed it. ;)

At our games club, we're easy going. Most people don't tailor (unless we're trying out a special scenario) but people are free to do what they like.

The_Outsider
30-05-2008, 17:11
Tailoring is an all-or-nothing thing.

Either everyone involved in a particular games does it or noone does.

There are exceptions (like in campaigns) but in pick up games I despise it with a passion.

I'm also a firm believer that being able to tailor a list does not make a good general, it just shows you understand the core principles of "rock-paper-scissors" that are inherent to either WHFB, 40k or many other games. I myself have built an all comers list that is refined via playtesting to be as powerful and general as possible. From this point one (IMO) its down to me as a player to bring its power to frutation.

This way good players will always be good, naturally there are some racial traits you cannot escape (like GK versus and armoured company, even a good player is basically screwed) but as a whole it means the player in question can wield most armies after a few test games like a duelling sword.

Its worth noting that there is a subtle difference between refining a list and tailoring, one is "hmm, I can get that whirlwind it and it will cover my gaping whole of anti horde" and the other is "gaunt horde? I'll have 3 whirlwinds and heavy bolter tactical squads please".

Shadowphrakt
30-05-2008, 23:37
I have only ever tailored one list. And that was kitting out my 2 tactical squads with flamers instead of plasma guns.

To be honest, I don't like it much. I'll always make an army list at the start of the day (and leave it at home and then hastily write down whats in it on a receipt before a battle). I disagree with people who tailor their army to wipe out mine in a friendly game, as it is taking all the friendlyness out of it. In a tournament, ost people tend to tailor their armies to anti MEQs, so I can't really argue with that as they can't change their list and if they face a hoarde army then they are up a certain creek without a certain implement.

Mad Doc Grotsnik
31-05-2008, 00:00
There are two styles to Tailoring your list. One is largely acceptable, the other is pure, despicable power gaming.

The former, is when you know what RACE you are going to be coming up against, and plan your list accordingly. This is relatively realistic, and as both players have equal chance, still pretty fair.

The latter however, is when you know the exact or likely composition of the army you are about to play, and write yours to thump that list and that list alone. This makes a fair chunk of the game largely pointless....

Gaebriel
31-05-2008, 00:09
Hmm, I never built an all-comers list, as I never played a pick up game and most propably never will, given my gaming environment which is just a couple of friends.

I usually build by background, and my background most certainly tells me what I'm up against - I mean, a Marine strike force doesn't usually walk around in the middle of nowhere on a "let's see what we will find"-mission - it's more likely "Drop down to A, take out B, extract.", and I can't imagine a strike leader arming his troops with flamers when he knows he's up against Chaos Marines, leaving the Plasma guns neatly lined up in the ship's locker...

All in all it depends on your playing environment - the more players, the more armies, the more pick-up games, the less an army should be tailored... Then on your personal preferences - whether you want to buy, build and paint one fixed list, collect a whole, say Company/Horde/Swarm, or just have every combination ready in your collection. Some people like to play the same list over and over, others never play the same list twice...

The_Outsider
31-05-2008, 00:09
There are two styles to Tailoring your list. One is largely acceptable, the other is pure, despicable power gaming.

The former, is when you know what RACE you are going to be coming up against, and plan your list accordingly. This is relatively realistic, and as both players have equal chance, still pretty fair.

The latter however, is when you know the exact or likely composition of the army you are about to play, and write yours to thump that list and that list alone. This makes a fair chunk of the game largely pointless....

"Nah mate, I won because of my l33t skillz, not because I brought an armoured company (WD flavour) knowing you were bringing pure GK"

Mad Doc Grotsnik
31-05-2008, 00:30
Indeed Outsider..

Also known as 'Wow. Lucky you brought all that Artillery with you. Otherwise, my list which was (and has been for a while now) mostly big gribbly Dark Elf creatures might have had you. But through the genius of foresight and waiting to see what I took out my case, you have truly shown your military genius. I mean, if only Wellington had thought to see exactly what Napoleon had brought to the field, and then raised his army to meet it, Waterloo would have been over an awful lot earlier....'

Gaebriel
31-05-2008, 00:48
Man guys, I'm so in awe of your general skills in these most tactical of games (don't know why Warhammer hasn't made the olympics yet). If it makes you happy : "Wow you're so superior - me casual player could never even scratch the podium you're on." Feeling better already?

I despise all comers-list as they tend to be one-of-each-mixtures without a continous theme. I wouldn't build a list without a theme, and the best theme is the one suited to the situation my force is in.

It's not like I'm winning all the time, but then I don't play to win, I play to have a nice shootout (difficult these days with everyone seeming to run into melee as fast as they can, but well). So do my opponents, well most of them, two are very competitive. Everybody gets what they want, and everyone has a good time - no harm done...

The_Outsider
31-05-2008, 13:18
I despise all comers-list as they tend to be one-of-each-mixtures without a continous theme. I wouldn't build a list without a theme, and the best theme is the one suited to the situation my force is in.



"Gaunt horde huh? My theme for the day is a SM artillery assault. 3 WW, some HB attack bikes......."

An all comers list can have as much theme as a force specifically desinged to play another (it can be just as obvious as well), one does not mutually exclude the other.

cerealkiller195
31-05-2008, 13:23
i'm not a fan, i have a tournament mentality and 'all comers' list as they say. i don't see why i need to tailor a list JUST to beat it seems kind of daft is you ask me.

Crazy Harborc
31-05-2008, 21:41
My regular opponents and I will sometimes use the same rosters for two or three games in a row. Many times it's a different roster, maybe a entirely different army for each game. Having a fun game.....no grades given, no money paid to the winner.:D

For us, the gaming is the important part. Having an enjoyable evening or afternoon......no matter who wins.;) Sometimes a list is cheesey, usually they are not.

Thrax
01-06-2008, 01:32
Our group always tailors its lists. We roll up battle parameters (we use our own tables) usually a week or more ahead of time so we know the objective and the enemy. We have variables that can leave some info unknown, so sometimes you may not know the objective, or whether it takes place at night, etc. Everyone has sizable armies so nobody gets bashed due to lack of options.

We ran a campaign awhile back where everyone had a 'force pool' of 2000 points for the campaign and the battles ranged from 1250 to 1500 points. We even had rules for attrition that worked pretty well. Great stuff!

Codsticker
01-06-2008, 02:27
For us, the gaming is the important part. Having an enjoyable evening or afternoon......no matter who wins.;) Sometimes a list is cheesey, usually they are not.

For me and my buddies that is certainly true. In fact we hardly bother to get together unless there are four of us so we can play the Carnage scenario. From a tactics point of view it's a complete screw up- really it is all about luck- but it sure is a lot of fun!

Gen.Steiner
01-06-2008, 02:53
I'm a Stillmanite. I build my armies and then never touch them again... usually.

I'd not be averse to list tailoring in a campaign but nowhere else at all. That's just me. I dislike it when people take tailored lists against me knowing the composition of my army tho'; sure take a list that's specific against Guard or whatever, but not against the exact army I'm fielding.

Lord_Squinty
01-06-2008, 04:01
Theres an exact same thread already on this.
Found here: http://warseer.com/forums/showthread.php?t=145497

n00bLord
01-06-2008, 04:06
I tailor all of my lists for loosing. Its much more fun that way.

The_Outsider
01-06-2008, 12:05
I dislike it when people take tailored lists against me knowing the composition of my army tho'; sure take a list that's specific against Guard or whatever, but not against the exact army I'm fielding.

"We don't need no forward planning, we need no fear, we crush our enemies no matter what heretical form they take".

But yeah, I dislike it when someone builds a list specifically to destroy mine - but as of yet i've yet to play someone who has been a batter player and do that. The good players know that their all comers list should be able to take on mine and defeat it because they are good players, not because they need an advantage.

Thats my issue as a whole, tailoring a list shows you understand rock-paper-scissors, not that you are necessarily a good player.

The Phazer
03-06-2008, 12:19
I don't paint anywhere near quick enough to do customised lists for things. I'm happy if I just get an all comers army finished.

Phazer

ehlijen
03-06-2008, 13:23
The situation in acutal war where one side has perfect intelligence on the opposing forces and mission objectives ahead of time and thus can tailor their forces to the reqiurements at hand are also usually those situations where that side already has such an advantage as to make the outcome highly likely in their favour. Ie, it's the kind of situation that doesn't make for an entertaining, close and evenly matched game.

Those situations where one side has to be pressed into action on short notice regardless of whether they are suited to the task or not to deal with a sudden situation make for much more fun games. Not always having the right unit for the right task leads to much more inventive and experimental tactics to find some way to gain an advantage in a disadvantagous situation. That makes for more unpredictable games, and usually means more fun to me.

Real life armies also do not tailor to specific opponents. They gear up for all eventualities. It's special forces that gear up to specific opponents because they know they will be extracted and back at base in time to reequip for the next mission if they need different things for that. Armies, battlions, companies etc do not have such luxuries: Once they are committed to the field, it will take a major resupply effort to retool in the face of unusual circumstances. That's why armies try to be 'all comers' whereas units try to be 'tailored to their role'.

If you claim to be 'realistic' you should really keep in mind that most armies, even in 40k, are not 'really' put back into the case after each battle and able bring Jack with the lascannon instead of Bob with the flamer for the next engagment. That'd be assuming that each unit has a full set of heavy and special weapons in a locker somewhere and has a specialist trained in it's usage. If an army has decided to use large numbers of long range AT weapons they do not keep an equally large number of short range flamers lying around 'just in case'.

Gen.Steiner
03-06-2008, 14:17
I totally agree with what ehlijen has just said.

However, partly as a joke, partly as a serious idea, what do people think about this...

Realism in 40K:

First side to suffer 33% casualties must begin to withdraw in good order if HQ is alive, in retreat if HQ is dead. Guard with Commissars may fight on to 40% casualties, Space Marines until 60%, Chaos until 33 + 3d10 %, Orks until they decide they've Zoggin' well 'ad enuff, Necrons until, well, they Phase Out, Tyranids never ever retreat ever and confer the same (insanity) on their enemies, Eldar must flee after 25% casualties if their objective has not been met.

Oh, and your casualties stay casualties - smash 'em with a hammer! :D

Gaebriel
03-06-2008, 14:20
Possibly, but Space Marines very much ressemble what special forces would be.

The major problem that I have is that I doubt there is a reasonable battlefield situation that would spawn any faction of the 40k universe randomly, or even more than two or three at the same location - fighting IG insurgents, then being run over by a tyranid horde - oh well, who missed the Hive fleet in orbit? Though of course a Fantasy setting is different in that from a contemporary setting and that from a high tech Science Fiction setting, and then again some factions from others...

And as soon as I vaguely knew what I'm up against, I would choose my weapons accordingly - it's not that Marines were only trained with one weapon type, and that there wouldn't be an armoury onboard a Strike cruiser - and given the typical size of a 40k force, that would only make 3-5 max of each weapon type...

Admittedly, with other armies it may be another case - or if I played a scenario that would put my force into a tight spot without Thunderhawk access. But then I would play a scenario, not an open game... I have no problems playing campaigns that simulate attrition, supply problems and their like, and model my forces accordingly, as long as everyone else goes by the same restrictions. And if I wanted to simulate a ragtag-force, I would even go with random assignment of equipment.

But as long as I play open battles against opponents building to the same style, why should I cut my style of play?

All in all it comes down to the playing style of one's group (pick up, or closed circle), number of different armies available (two or three or dozens), size of one's collection (always taking one combination or wanting to try out everything), what one wants to play (a balanced game, or a scenario), and one's aim in the whole endeavour (thriving to be a "good player", or just playing on).

Now I admit I might take a less serious stand on the matter as I'm playing 40k on the side, and saving my tactical thinking for other game systems, mainly historicals (see Napoleonics, where indeed rock-paper-scissors is the epitome of warfare, but then, everyone is using the same troop types...).

colmarekblack
03-06-2008, 14:22
Its a nice idea, but you'll get all the Eldar Fying circus players whining about it due to their low troop numbers.

I would only add 2d6 +33 to Chaos. Or make it mark related, with Khorne not giving a damm how many of there own troops die.

Sai-Lauren
03-06-2008, 14:43
For me, the army list is usually the starting point - I'll choose which army I'm going to do, work out how I want it to play, then go through the codex to make it as close as I can to my idea, also listing out what figures I have and what I need to get.

Once that's done, that army is immutable until codex/edition changes enforce editing it.

For me, it's not about working out what works well against what and maxing out on that when I need to, it's working out how to use something to the best of its abilities no matter what I'm facing, and if I get it wrong, I'll learn for next time, and won't do that, or some of the similar things, again.

Maybe I lose, but my ego will cope with that easily enough, I mean, it's not like I make little notches in my belt when I win.

After all, real military forces don't often have the luxury of being able to field what they want when they want it, they have to make do with what's in theatre at that time and place.

Edit:


Possibly, but Space Marines very much ressemble what special forces would be.

No, they don't. Special forces (SAS, SBS, Seals etc) would almost never take to the field in a large scale battle, and if they did, they would do little better than ordinary troops in them.

They're low maintenance units that will be able to go behind enemy lines and survive for long periods of time, hunting down enemy defensive emplacements, supply dumps and depots, armaments factories, communications lines, transportation links and command and control sites and destroy or disrupt them. They would be able to use any enemy equipment (chances are they would be equipped initially with enemy weapons so that they could use captured ammunition from the outset, rather than risking running out and having to resupply), and can live off the land for as long as needs be.

Kill team and Inquisitor scale games is the place these guys will operate. Not 40k.

Marines are Elite troops.
Special Forces are Elite troops.

But Marines are not Special Forces. At best, they're Storm Troopers and Heavy Infantry combined.

The_Outsider
03-06-2008, 17:08
No, they don't. Special forces (SAS, SBS, Seals etc) would almost never take to the field in a large scale battle, and if they did, they would do little better than ordinary troops in them.



Minus the obvious "marines are 'ard and cool, thus they kick the everliving frag out of anything they can", a marines' role is rather strange when compared ot modern military.

As you say they don't fit what is generally accpeted as special forces (at least in the manner that the SAS/whoever operate) but on the other hand they are "elite" in comparison to msot other forces.

What does however easily get lost in translation is the timeframe. The SAS/whoever is on average a couple hours flight away from any incursion they'd likely to be needed for. Marines are several weeks away for most, but this is much faster than te time it takes to get the IG rolling.

If I were to describe marines I would called them "precision shock troops". They strike where they can cause the most damage and with as an overwhelming force as possible.