View Full Version : I admit it, I'm an idiot. Help!

08-03-2009, 07:03
I've been getting very rusty at 40k lately. Not to brag, but for a time I was one of the higher-level veterans. And yet, for the third week in a row, I have massively underperformed in every game I played. And I'm not going to blame the dice, broken builds, or certain army builds that are pants. This is about actual tactical errors or careless mistakes, and how one can stop from repeating them over and over again.

For example, two weeks ago, my Genestealers failed to Outflank a unit of three Tzeentch Flamers, dying to their shooting over the course of two turns. Why? Because, even though they were standing right there, I forgot to charge with them for two turns. Then, despite messing up with my Genestealers, my shooting leveled every Troop unit on the field in the Secure and Control mission (I had horde Tyranids, he had Daemons, my dice were performing immaculately, and just about every roll he made dug him further and further into a hole), and my two units of Termegaunts completely surrounded my objective. Had I done absolutely nothing, I might have won. Instead of backing up and securing my hold on the objective, I decided to advance and try and shoot the last two wounds left off the nearby Great Unclean One with my Termegaunts, counting on him to fluff a Difficult Terrain test to charge me. The GUO lived, moved 6", and charged another 6". Combat obviously failed to kill it and because he had gotten too close to my objective with his GUO on the bottom of the last turn, he contested my objective and pulled a Draw.

Last week, I agreed to play a 2500 pt CSM game against a guy I knew would be using Grey Knight Terminators w/ decked out GM to actually hit 2500 pts. Rather than wimping back down to 2000, I said yes to 2500 pts. Not a single Lash or Warptime was cast all game, thanks to the Psychic Hood, and the Terminators made short work of my entire army, which had to get within 12" to do much of anything with all the Plasma Guns and Meltaguns I had stacked my list with. Sacred Incense would've rendered every charge I launched a suicide attack. Then I got the brilliant idea to tank shock a unit of Scouts w/ Telion with a Land Raider full of Berserkers. Unfortunately, because you can't Tank Shock and pivot in the same movement (something I did not know), my front hatch was entirely blocked by the Scouts who wrapped around the LR's hull. By the time the Berserkers actually got out, they were too late to hack their way past the Scouts to the Objective, and two units of Assault Marines jumped them after the Scouts died. Then there was the part where, to defend my Objective from Deepstriking Terminators, I charged my Defiler into one of the Terminator units. In hindsight, after getting cleaved apart by the clearly WYSIWYGed Chainfists, I don't know in what universe I thought that would've been a good idea.

This week, I played in a 4000-pt Tyranid megabattle against a Space Marine army and a CSM army, both of whom played very armor heavy. The Marine player had a Vindicator, a Land Raider, and a Drop Pod, while the CSM player had a Possessed LR, 2 possessed Predators, a Dreadnought, and a Defiler. I agreed to a 4'x12' battlefield (two tables) and wound up with a Spearhead deployment in a Kill Points mission. Even knowing this, I let my opponents set up terrain (because I was busy getting all my stuff out and wanted to give them something to do) and I built a list with 100 w/o# Gaunts and 60 Hormagaunts (because I thought it would look cool). I also forgot that all my heavy Carnifexes were upgraded with both Bonded Exoskeleton and Regenerate, two upgrades I don't normally take, which would've saved the game for me had I remembered them. The game featured many memorably brainless tactical maneuvers as using Scuttling Genestealers as a Gaunt screen, using fragmented Gaunt units to bait a Raptor squad back to where my Zoanthropes were hiding, willingly storming most of my Hormagaunts through a bottleneck where a Predator and 10 Terminators were waiting, and probably the greatest blunder of all, diverting half my army backwards to kill a Terminator squad that teleported in behind me. (And no, I didn't even manage to kill the Terminators.)

I'm looking for some advice as to how players can focus during games, so as not to forget stuff, and to not attempt truly boneheaded "tactics" that are actually very bad ideas, such as the examples above. Something like tricks you use to make sure you know exactly what you're doing, and/or some kind of generic tacticia for noobs.

Also, as for the armies and lists that I'm drawn to, it feels so pathetic that the most appealing armies to me are the worst possible builds from every codex. Horde Tyranids. Mech Undivided Night Lords. Grey Knight allies for Black Templars. Kroot-heavy Tau. (Speaking of Tau, the only reason I play them instead of Eldar is because I thought the Eldar were too powerful.) How can I resist the temptation to use garbage units and builds that look cool, while finding a way to like the lame, gimmicky stuff that's actually good, like Double Lash Oblit-spam, Stealer-zilla, Tau Air Force, and others? Please help, before the likes of Spawn, Vespid, and Hormagaunts actually find a place in my armies! :cries:

08-03-2009, 07:12
I have a check list,( sort of like a preflight one) so i dont forget stuff. Like i forget to roll my reserves or rally my regrouping gaurdsmen like all the time.

08-03-2009, 07:58
man don't get yourself down too much a used to play a World eaters build with a unit of terminators in it that i would always DS problem is i would always forget so for the whole game id be like

"man terminators would fix this!"

then later looking down and going...hmm i had terminators that's right !

as for the issues, it might sound basic but review your list every so often, just have it sitting by you on the table and use it to go over what units have done what per phase. works wonders

08-03-2009, 08:32
That is pretty bad,:D no offence. Work systematicly from one edge of the board to the other. Also keep the outflankers in eyesight.

08-03-2009, 08:57
Play soem smaller games, say 1-1.5K that way your units are more valuable (as a percentage of your total points) you'll notice misusing a 300 point unit more there than in a 4K game and hopefully return your focus

08-03-2009, 09:03
First, I have done all the same and more with both my Nids and my Eldar (spending 210pts on Eldrad and then forgetting to use his powers before moving a unit just hurts). My suggestion would be to take a few momments at the beginning of each of your turns to run through exactly what you want to accomplish that turn. Sometimes, if you are thinking about things during your opponent's turn, you will forget something that you thought early on because something cool/stupid/amazing happens and distrakes you.

If just pausing doesn't work, remember that there are no rules against a pad of paper and a pen.

Oh, and don't worry about the winless streak of late. After winning over 60% of my games for several months, I hit November and December and didn't win a single game for about 6 weeks. I had plenty of draws and losses, just no wins. I just needed to back off some, and think things through more as I was doing them. Now, I am back on track and am in good shape to possibly win in our current local league.

08-03-2009, 09:29
I wouldn't owrry about it, we all have our off games. I have a 85% loss ratio across all GW games I have ever played. I used to make alot of small, silly mistakes or tactical errors and sometimes a strong win was downgraded to a draw or even a loss due to my mistakes.

Keep playing, go for some smaller games 1500-2000pts against as many people as possible. Try and keep the smae army, don't swop units in or out for a while. Find what works, if something doesn't after 5 games or so, try replacing it with something else. If your always using roughly the same army, not only do you get a narrative, you also start finding out what works together and you wont forget to use the wierd wargear or unit you put in at the last minute.

Try and remember a combined arms approach. One of my biggest beginner mistakes was using my army as a bunch of units, not an army. When I started using things in combination it worked alot better.

Good luck.

Count de Monet
08-03-2009, 14:06
As for the 'poor' army types, don't worry about it. Play the stuff you like. May not be optimal, but over time you'll get better with them. Then in the next edition/codex those builds will be the best ones and you'll roll over the opposition. ;)

As for forgetting things, make a set of note cards with one unit=one card. Include stat info on them too if desired for easy reference. Make another card with everything you might do in a turn (roll for reserves, rally, move, etc.) in order. Go step by step through the turn sequence and quickly flip through the cards to see if you've forgotten a unit before moving on to the next step. When a unit is destroyed, set that card aside (which also makes for easy KP tallies). Do transports on separate cards since they're moved/etc. on their own.

I'd also second the smaller games for a while - get it down with a smaller force before deluging yourself with huge fights.

08-03-2009, 15:26
There's only one way. Practice practice practice. I often forget to cast warptime myself.

08-03-2009, 16:12
I have a check list

Same here, and it really helps. One of my friends always forgets to shoot his Biovore, and to deepstrike his Lictor, so I added his units to my check list... :D

08-03-2009, 22:10
A list of your objectives and units.
Example: Capture middle base but kill Vindicator first.
Guardsmen Squad

08-03-2009, 22:16
at the end of each phase scour the whole board for units which haven't done anything and remind yourself every so often what in reserves

08-03-2009, 23:16
lol, I'm having relatively similar problems with my tau. I just can't win depsite getting in much better positions than my opponents. I think practice is all thats left for us sadly! I have a bad habit of forgetting my outflanking kroot entirely. i guess we could use check lists but then what would we blame our results on!

08-03-2009, 23:31
I take it you have a job, busy life etc?
Well I think you're playing when you're tired. All those mistakes sound just like how I get after a hard week at work and when the kid has been playing me up and his mum's being particularly evil blah blah. I know i can't play well when I feel fatigued so that's when I either take a comedy list down to my club, you know just an experiment, or don't go at all. I may stay in painting instead, or heck, go to the pub.
if I'm in a bad way and absolutely have to play, because it's a tourney or a long arranged match, I make sure I have plenty of caffine in me. It's the only way, and screw sleep, this is war!

09-03-2009, 00:12
It may sound obvious, but think about a move before you do it, as in the GUO example never count on your opponent to have bad luck, I agree with a lot that has already been said. Also it may not be dice roll related luck, but forgetting something i just as much luck related as failing an armour save, and soon you'll get back into the swing of things.

09-03-2009, 01:56
sometimes ya just forget stuff, it happens. I played an entire game where i had forgot to deep strike my termies in as they were sitting inreserve where i had decided to build up by dead pile. had land speeders hidden behind scenery and forgotten about em when they could have contested in the last turn e.t.c. best you can do is think about what you are going to do in your turn while your oppo is taking thier turn. that way, yuo get a bit more time to think. but sometimes, it's all down to chance and the lady.

09-03-2009, 02:03

What does this mean?

09-03-2009, 02:08
salvation. (http://www.thewarstore.com/product9373.html)

09-03-2009, 02:21
"What you see is what you get". normally.
could also mean "white yettis smell irrisitable when your goggle-eye'd".

09-03-2009, 02:42
or 'wetting your special irradiated weaponry yields great excitement'

09-03-2009, 07:08
Try Army Builder. It puts all the special rules and stats of your specific army list right at your fingertips. Fumbling through your Codex is not an efficient way to play the game. ;)

09-03-2009, 08:12
basically i was doing the same types of mistakes until i realised something: Forgetting stuff is not about tactics, it's about getting *used* to the army list and its playstyle. For example,when i play my relatively newer space marine armies i am crap at using tanks' movement cause my previous army was IG and the few tanks mostly kept still to fire all guns, but i am good at rapid-firing tactics, calculating distance etc. and nearly *perfect* at calculating everything deepstrike-related (from playing drop troops plasmaspam for years lol).Try and play lots fo games with the same armylist, get a "feel" for its tactics & playstyle with the current ruleset.

09-03-2009, 10:31
What does this mean?

WYSIWYG = What You See Is What You Get

Emperors Teeth
09-03-2009, 11:15
I used to forget half the special rules for my Ogre Kingdoms, which drove me nuts as it cost me games. I took a piece of A4 paper and wrote in big letters 'THINGS TO REMEMBER!'. Onto it I put all the weird things I forgot... it really helped when I remembered to put it on the table!

09-03-2009, 11:38
Sometimes in matches I get a little other enthusiastic about getting various units into combat and killing everything, sometimes forgetting something really important. This is why on the back of my right hand I have D.I.D.E? written in pen in some tournaments.

Did I do everything?

Really helps when you're picking up the dice to do something and you spot that. "I shoot at---- WAIT! other unit to move first."

09-03-2009, 11:48
The reserves issue.

Don't have them in a case on the other side of the room, move a small table to the side of the one you're on, and have them on that, along with the rule book, blast markers etc. You have a better looking gaming table if it's not covered in non model bits, and you will keep seeing those reserves.

Forgetting stuff. Have a plan of what you want to do for the whole battle, and in each phase, go over each unit, and make sure it's dong something towards that plan.

It doesn't have to be complex, eg these 4 units are advancing to take the objective there, these 5 are holding the home one, and the reserves are coming in to suppport whichever flank needs them most.

Forgetting special rules, etc.
Have a typed up army list, with the important bits prominant- eg the spells the farseer has today,
the correct statline for the carifex with those biomorphs

One thing I do, which is not needed, but a habit picked up from other games where it is compulsory, is to declare what I'm doing with everything at the start of the phase - eg the centre of the battle line, the mortars and the hell hound are going to thin down the closest two mobs, the veterans will kill that lobba battery, and the sentinals will get that deffcopta.

On the stupid moves front, just think 'what happens if this works, and what if it doesn't work?'
I will often do less than optimal things- eg using the vanquisher to have another go at killing that venerable dread on the other side of the table, that a Vanquisher AT round had bounced off of, twice, instead of using the 3 heavy bolter secondary armament to kill the last of the scouts.

However, if it not working will cost me a very useful unit, or an objective, then I put more units on the job, so I can be as sure as I need to be that it will happen.

On th tank shock, how many scouts does it take to block the front and side hatches of a land raider, remembering they have to be at lest 1" away from it, after they've been moved back by tank shock?

09-03-2009, 12:24
Some of the armies that you listed as liking are not really all that weak. Undivided chaos can be quite decent as the regular ol' Chaos Space Marine unit is one of the most solid troops choices in the game.

Black Templars with Grey Knights allies can be really good too: the Black Templars have enough special rules to set them apart from regular Space Marines, and with vows can be quite vicious in Close Combat, and Grey Knights Terminators can be a fluffy and powerful addition to that force.

10-03-2009, 01:15
Some of the armies that you listed as liking are not really all that weak. Undivided chaos can be quite decent as the regular ol' Chaos Space Marine unit is one of the most solid troops choices in the game.
Maybe, but if you know what you want your unit to do, or who you want your unit to kill, a Cult Marine unit would win every time. It's like Eldar Aspect Warriors vs Guardians.

Black Templars with Grey Knights allies can be really good too: the Black Templars have enough special rules to set them apart from regular Space Marines, and with vows can be quite vicious in Close Combat, and Grey Knights Terminators can be a fluffy and powerful addition to that force.
GK allies can't use Vows. I just use them because I don't have to buy as many Initiates and Neophytes as I ought to. (I only own enough models to field 2 full Initiate / Neophyte mobs. I think it's fitting because you can only use two Chaplains anyway.) By allying in 2 units of PAGKs, I can fill up a lot of points on Fearless scoring units, wield a ton of mobile dakka, and look darn good while doing so.

(Actually, re-reading for the RAW, they can use Uphold the Honor of the Emperor. Basically, the vow has to say "all units" and not just "Black Templars" for it to work on the GKs. For example, GKs under Accept Any Challenges must still charge if they are able, as the conditional there says "any unit that can declare a charge". However, they do not gain Preferred Enemy because that rule only applies to "Black Tempars units".)

10-03-2009, 10:51
Well... regular CSM vs. Cult Marines aren't quite so cut-and-dried as that. Point for point, CSM have almost as many attacks in CC as berzerkers, and put more wounds on the table than any of the cult troops. That doesn't even take into account giving them icons. The cult troops have other bonuses such as being able to move and fire to effect (noise marines and thousand sons) being obscenely tough (plague marines) and attacking first and stronger, with better skill in CC (berzerkers) in addition to the cults being fearless.

I wasn't trying to say that vows can be used for allies (not sure if they can or not by RAW) but I was just saying that it's not that bad of a combo, though I think that PAGKs are probably a tad too expensive for what you get out of them (although I like noise marines who are just as expensive... and function similarly).

10-03-2009, 11:07
I have, on many occasions, outright forgotten to deploy various units. My Wraiths were a fond favorite, only realising 3 turns in that they were missing :(

In other moments of sheer genius I've been all cocky and calculated my army list by hand, only realising when it came to calculating VP that I was several hundred points under...

Good times :)

Autobot HQ
10-03-2009, 11:20
In Warhammer I have a similar issue where I used to forget what spells did what and who had what spells, and had to flip back and forth between books etc. It all became very easy for me to lose details and forget I had this ability or that ability.

Then GW produced Magic Cards.

They had all the spells on, and as I play L5R all I did was print them, put them in a card sleeve, and take them with me. Then, all my sorcerers have little stacks of cards that at the start of each magic phase I'd pick up and see what each could do. Man oh man that helped my magic phase so much.

So then I thinks, what about the other phases? Could this be used again?

So, I named the units, wrote what was in each, then had coloured paper clips to attach if they were reserves/it came from below. Slipped them into sleeves, and then at the start of each movement phase, pick up those cards first. Then essentially play out the turn as if you was playing a card game. Once you've moved the unit, put the card down next to it. Then in your shooting phase, you pick the card back up as you shoot with them. As it was for WHFB I didn't need one for the Assault phase, but one would imagine it could be used the same.

"Right, the red paper clip says I have a Scorpion to arrive, so rolling him now. Didn't arrive, put card down. Now, rest of my units ... mmm, this one is good, where are they .. oh, ok they'll move forward to take aim on those skirmishers, card next to them. <<fast forward>> Ok, shooting phase, these guys have a card on them, so evidently they're shooting something."

Sounds so so simple, and tbh at first people thought I was a bit daft/thick to not remember everything I did. Still, changed awfully quick when I proceeded to beat them into the floor and these days, cardless, I qualify for every GT I enter.


Lord Solar Plexus
10-03-2009, 14:36
I've been getting very rusty at 40k lately. Not to brag, but for a time I was one of the higher-level veterans. And yet, for the third week in a row, I have massively underperformed in every game I played. And I'm not going to blame the dice, broken builds, or certain army builds that are pants. This is about actual tactical errors or careless mistakes, and how one can stop from repeating them over and over again.

Hey, same here! Over the last couple of games I've forgotten to deploy units, I've moved them in the wrong direction, I tried to tackle stuff I knew I wouldn't hurt, I forgot to go to ground when it really mattered and so on.

I suppose it's just a random streak. I won't go to deeply into trying to find a solution but will wait just a little longer for the new Guard codex - then it is back to square one anyways. :)

10-03-2009, 15:50
I played a game using my Daemons and forgot about the Icons and had units deepstriking all over the place.

And everyone makes mistakes and forgets to fire or charge or move units from time to time. It happens.

My current nemesis is Orks and I've lost the last 3 of 4 games I've played against them. The last game I used SM's and set up stupidily and it cost me. :rolleyes:

10-03-2009, 16:10
What another poster said about "think before move" is very important.

It has been my experience that if I have to think more than about 20 seconds "Should I move that unit?", the answer is likely "No, dummy! Don't move it!" Moving a unit just for something to do can expose it needlessly -- and more importantly -- shows that you really don't know what you are doing with that unit.

Same goes for Deployment actually. So often I'll say things like "Well, I'll put these guys here, I guess." Such a comment is lazy on my part and is really saying "I am too tired / too clueless to form a coherent plan for this game, so let's just get started." The results usually prove out my 'careful planning' in this way. :(

10-03-2009, 17:18
I have a sheet of paper with important stuff on it, often in big letters: REMEMBER RESERVES. I've forgotten loads of stuff in reserve before, lictors, raveners etc

I find it really useful for fantasy writing down all magic spells and magic items. I run the check list in each phase.