PDA

View Full Version : Comped lists - easier and less tactics required? Discuss



IcedCrow
21-01-2014, 19:53
This was spawned from the comp thread below, and broke out into its own thread because while it deals with comp it also deals with a different subject.

I have heard many times over the many years of playing that harder lists give you more tactics, while softer lists require less tactics and are easy to play (meaning if you are playing a game where both sides are not min/maxing, that the game is easier and provides less strategy and tactics)

Here's my counter:

In 1998 I started into the tournament min/max scene. My first tournament exposure was in 40k. My hard list was 14 starcannons in a 1500 point list. The skill required to use this? Zero. With 42 S6 AP2 shots a turn, a meta that was heavily dominated by 3+ save units, and powers like GUIDE to give me re-rolls, I lost three games in two years out of nearly 100 tournament games total (to nids and orks). The catalyst that started me to collect this list? IN 1998 my first tournament army (Dark Angels) was tabled in three turns by this list and the eldar player told me after the game he liked the eldar list he ran (14 starcannons) because it was challenging for him and advanced and hard to use. Challenge accepted, I took it and ran with it and did very well with it, but it was easily the easiest 40k list I ever ran in my life.

My tournament fantasy army was predominantly the black knight bus led by four vampires. Again - an army that took advantage and exploited fear and autobreak, won me many trophies and high placing in both Baltimore and Chicago's Grand Tournaments. I lost a handful of times. The skill required? Point bus at most expensive enemy unit, move forward. So long as I won combat by one and they weren't unbreakable or immune to fear (which was not common) I was able to auto break them and reap huge amounts of victory points.

So let's discuss - how exactly harder lists require more tactics to play properly than softer lists do. It is a common phrase I hear and I'd like to debate it.

Karak Norn Clansman
21-01-2014, 19:57
From my experience comped lists brings the game towards being more tactical, since there are less tactical skill involved the more cheesy powerbuilds you turn up with.

Composition still isn't the end of the world for anyone wanting to make strong or outright cheesy armies. You'll still make it, but with moderation.

leopard
21-01-2014, 20:25
Well I guess comp reduces the scope of what you may face, and most comp also limits the scenarios and terrain also so in theory you have an easier game, there are fewer variables to consider.

Offset by the fact comp tends to hang out in a more competitive environment, so you will perhaps be facing a foe who is also able to take advantage of the situation just as much as you can.

While I personally don't like comp, I don't think it makes the game more or less tactical or skillfull, simply because you are still facing an opponent who has the same set of knowledge.

It is true you have less ability to try the more off the wall lists that can play rock paper scissors and play the odds of getting an advantage that way, you cannot use a broken combination to get an advantage (depending on the comp of course), but then your opponent need not consider that combination so perhaps they can spend more points and time on what they want to do and less defending against what you want to do.

Probably all cancels out in the end, While I don't like it, I do see how it can make games faster and perhaps better for a high time pressure environment, I also think there are other ways to solve that problem.

Pays your money etc.

Doubt you will get a clear agreement, doubt even more it matters

IcedCrow
21-01-2014, 20:27
I'd say 99 out of 100 threads on the internet don't give a clear agreement or matter :D its still fun to read.

leopard
21-01-2014, 20:32
I'd say 99 out of 100 threads on the internet don't give a clear agreement or matter :D its still fun to read.

Oh I didn't say otherwise, can be an interesting thought exercise as well, and a good way to explore some of the logical holes in the rules.

Only some of them, there is not enough time in the universe to explore all of them

logan054
21-01-2014, 20:33
Well I guess comp reduces the scope of what you may face, and most comp also limits the scenarios and terrain also so in theory you have an easier game, there are fewer variables to consider.

I agree that tournaments which limit scenarios seem counter productive, that isn't anything to do with comp, that simply to do with people/TO's not liking watch tower and blood and glory, personally I think these scenarios (like most) play an important part in balance, that isn't to say they couldn't use a little tweaking.

Urgat
21-01-2014, 20:52
I've never played comp'ed, but I'll give my opinion anyway: it probably doesn't change the tactics or how "easy" it is, it just moves inbalances to some other place. If you nerf something, everything else becomes comparatively better. Saying it's easier is absurd. To give an extreme exemple, if you have armies with only the weakest core choices avaialble, does it become easier for... for who? You, or your opponent, or some global, nevulous concept that you'd assign to the game as some kind of third party? Will you find it easy to beat all these clanrats with only gobs? Or gobs with only skinks? Or is the game just more "easy" just for the ehll of it? It's not any easier for anybody, it's just the same, with strenghts and weaknesses swapped around. Is it better? The answer is the same. The comp is there to please some people, it'll displease those who like the units that were targeted by it. The opposite would be just as true. Imho comp is just a way to please some people over others, or impose a play style upon people who would not abide to the wishes of the ones who set said comps up. It is neither good not bad, it's just aimed at one demographic rather than another, these two demographics supposedly not being able to reconcile themselves over that matter. As for being more or less tactical, please. Did limiting the number of hydras a DE army could bring last edition make the game less tactical? Would removing hydras altogether make it more tactical? Of course not. From what garbage I can see in the so called "tactical" subforum where people post their lists, comped games just lead tourney players to find what powerbuild they can make within the scope of said comp. It's the same, just from a different angle.

leopard
21-01-2014, 21:00
I personally agree with tournaments that limit scenarios, seems counter productive, that isn't anything to do with comp, that simply to do with people/TO's not liking watch tower and blood and glory, personally I think these scenarios (like most) play an important part in balance, that isn't to say they couldn't use a little tweaking.

Take those two out, you have four left, for a three game event thats enough, for a five game run the first one twice, job done, just battleline causes issues that may need some sorting out - some of the scenarios make some builds that get hit with the hammer a lot more risky.

Like you say, perhaps a little tweaking but they do make a difference

logan054
21-01-2014, 21:32
Take those two out, you have four left, for a three game event thats enough, for a five game run the first one twice, job done, just battleline causes issues that may need some sorting out - some of the scenarios make some builds that get hit with the hammer a lot more risky

I should have checked the post first lol (edited now). I completely agree with you, just using battleline is not only boring but allows people to be less careful with list construction, no need to worry so much about banners for your gunline, no need to worry about infantry blocks for your watch tower, for those two I think its better if they offer a VP advantage rather than instant win.

leopard
21-01-2014, 21:44
Instant win works in a way though, you have a single goal, go for it, the army is disposable if you manage it.

However with objectives I like how FoW works it, you capture at the start of your turn, before movement, so you have to move on in one turn, then survive the enemies turn before you get them, i.e. you need do more than get one dude there, you have to actually hold it.

Less useful for a 20-0 system where a sizable VP bonus would work better, also swap the tower for a hill occasionally ;-)

SteveW
21-01-2014, 21:46
The whole point of comp is exclusive, not inclusive. So by default it requires far less tactics, skill, and testicular fortitude(joking, don't stroke out) to play in that environment.

Phazael
21-01-2014, 21:48
Simple proof of concept:

Compare top tens from all events in non-soft score environments (most of the east coast USA, some of Europe, anything using the ETC or Swedish formats) to areas that use soft scores (much of west coast and central US) and look at army diversity. Hard comp is a zero sum in this mental exercise, because all it does is move the goalposts. People still take the most efficient and optimized thing allowed in the environment because there is literally no reason not to. Every event in non-soft environments tends to see the same 3-4 armies (if that many) in the top tables, while even the only slightly soft scored ones see at least half a dozen or more different armies, along with a lot more diversity between different lists of the same army. The ETC tournaments you could basically recite the entire army list once you knew what race it was and likely be 99% accurate. Conversely, the most soft score intensive event in the nation (Quake City Rumble or Waaghpaca) you would be hard pressed to find two top ten armies that even remotely resemble one another.

Diversity might not be an indicator of tactical acumen, in and of itself, but mirror matches are DEFFINATELY determined by dice rolls most of the time. That's not even getting into the bland rock paper scissors routine that some metas degenerate into when there is no incentive to be creative.

Karak Norn Clansman
21-01-2014, 21:50
The whole point of comp is exclusive, not inclusive. So by default it requires far less tactics, skill, and testicular fortitude(joking, don't stroke out) to play in that environment.

...because fielding the worst kind of "netlist" necessarily requires oh so much skill. Or tactics. :rolleyes:

SteveW
21-01-2014, 21:52
...because fielding the worst kind of "netlist" necessarily requires oh so much skill. Or tactics. :rolleyes:

You know you don't have to take a netlist don't you? You actually can... wait for it... design... your... own... list ....Ahhhhh! Did I just blow your mind or what?

Lord Inquisitor
21-01-2014, 21:55
I've played fairly extensively with both comp and uncomped and I really am not convinced one is massively more "tactical" than the other. I think it takes as much skill trading unkillable lords and daemon princes as it does to play with giants and goblins. I've played at the top tables of round 9 of ard boyz with the worst filth I can muster and I've played comp 19 swedish comp using slaanesh daemon chariots with characters. I think the types of tactical challenges vary.


The whole point of comp is exclusive, not inclusive. So by default it requires far less tactics, skill, and testicular fortitude(joking, don't stroke out) to play in that environment.
See I would disagree with this. It depends on the comp (ETC is more exclusive than Swedish) but the whole point of comp in the first place is surely to increase teh number of viable builds? How is more variety in armies used not making the game more inclusive?

Even if the comp bans certain units or combinations, if this opens up more viable builds in practice, isn't the net effect more inclusive?

Karak Norn Clansman
21-01-2014, 21:56
You know you don't have to take a netlist don't you? You actually can... wait for it... design... your... own... list ....Ahhhhh! Did I just blow your mind or what?

Pal, I don't take "netlists". I always field my own kind of armies, regardless of success. A Miner army without Anvil of Doom once earned me last place and a good consolation prize in a tournament of ninety people.

Composition isn't there to hinder me, it's there to hinder the powerplayers stomping me too hard without any kind of chance at real involvement in the game for my part. :p

Besides, composition can easily sit in the way of many themed armies which are objectively weak. Still, it's better with composition than without it for the most part.

SteveW
21-01-2014, 22:09
I've played fairly extensively with both comp and uncomped and I really am not convinced one is massively more "tactical" than the other. I think it takes as much skill trading unkillable lords and daemon princes as it does to play with giants and goblins. I've played at the top tables of round 9 of ard boyz with the worst filth I can muster and I've played comp 19 swedish comp using slaanesh daemon chariots with characters. I think the types of tactical challenges vary.


See I would disagree with this. It depends on the comp (ETC is more exclusive than Swedish) but the whole point of comp in the first place is surely to increase teh number of viable builds? How is more variety in armies used not making the game more inclusive?

Even if the comp bans certain units or combinations, if this opens up more viable builds in practice, isn't the net effect more inclusive?

When you have to write "less exclusive" and "more exclusive" you're conceding their point is exclusion.


Pal, I don't take "netlists". I always field my own kind of armies, regardless of success. A Miner army without Anvil of Doom once earned me last place and a good consolation prize in a tournament of ninety people.

Composition isn't there to hinder me, it's there to hinder the powerplayers stomping me too hard without any kind of chance at real involvement in the game for my part. :p

Besides, composition can easily sit in the way of many themed armies which are objectively weak. Still, it's better with composition than without it for the most part.

So you want to bring lists that are not even there to try and win but then handicap everyone else enough to make your list viable? Can't even wrap my head around that mentality.

Karak Norn Clansman
21-01-2014, 22:11
So you want to bring lists that are not even there to try and win but then handicap everyone else enough to make your list viable? Can't even wrap my head around that mentality.

What the hell are you talking about? Please tell.

Lord Inquisitor
21-01-2014, 22:18
When you have to write "less exclusive" and "more exclusive" you're conceding their point is exclusion.
I don't understand what you mean here.

Comp's purpose is to encourage variation in army lists. Running uncomped is exclusive when it cuts out many units from being used in practice.

SteveW
21-01-2014, 22:21
I always field my own kind of armies, regardless of success. A Miner army without Anvil of Doom once earned me last place and a good consolation prize in a tournament of ninety people.

Composition isn't there to hinder me, it's there to hinder the powerplayers stomping me too hard without any kind of chance at real involvement in the game for my part. :p



You wrote this. It means you take really poorly made lists then expect comp to hamstring everyone you play against so you don't get "stomped too hard".


What the hell are you talking about? Please tell.

It's all good to try and make a list work, but it didn't really work if you only made it work because the rules were bent so it would work.

Scammel
21-01-2014, 22:21
It's clear that the intent of comp is to increase diversity through a few well-placed restrictions and arguing that this is paradoxical is pretty short-sighted (as the example goes, forbidding murder is freedom to live). Whether it achieves that or not is up for debate and Phazael's measure could be a good one.

Personally, I think many comp systems are really quite draconian in what is one the most balanced editions to date and I also suspect that the way comp systems are developed is a little off - it seems that there's an active search for elements to comp upon the release of a new book, restrictions are slapped on the old mound that exists for every other army and there doesn't seem to be much stepping back, taking in the larger picture and rebuilding it from the ground up every so often. It's taken for granted that a certain level of comp is needed all the time.

Karak Norn Clansman
21-01-2014, 22:29
You wrote this. It means you take really poorly made lists then expect comp to hamstring everyone you play against so you don't get "stomped too hard".

Nope. It was obviously written as a twisted joke to get the point through, since you mentioned me specifically concerning netlists.


It's all good to try and make a list work, but it didn't really work if you only made it work because the rules were bent so it would work.

Oh, my lists don't work. I do not expect them to, though it's possible my wild experiments might accidentally hit a working formula. Sometimes it even seem like it during games. As long as it's fun, it's all right.

What I meant was rather that people with less min-maxed armies (not me, think rather average ones) would stand a chance to win if they were lucky and had the skills if facing a power-tailored list at tournaments. Composition aims for it.

As a side-effect, it usually gives many of my wacko lists a few turns where it seems that the game could have swung either way, until my opponent's skill, my poor luck or simply his better army list wins the day. It makes the game more enjoyable for both of the players. Yes, at the end of the match I'm normally massacred 0-20 with or without composition, but with composition the game will usually have a time when everything seems to hang in the balance, and where the game could have swung either way. Less so without composition, and then it also applies to average rather than weak but themed army lists.

SteveW
21-01-2014, 22:31
I don't understand what you mean here.

Comp's purpose is to encourage variation in army lists. Running uncomped is exclusive when it cuts out many units from being used in practice.

I don't know how to make it any more clear but I will try. If the sweedish comp is slightly exclusive, and the ETC is extremely exclusive, they are varying degrees of exclusivity but still are both exclusive.

Running uncomped does no such thing. It leaves it up to the player making the army to pick what he/she brings. That is the most inclusive thing you can do short of paying people to show up.

Lord Inquisitor
21-01-2014, 22:34
Simple proof of concept:

Compare top tens from all events in non-soft score environments (most of the east coast USA, some of Europe, anything using the ETC or Swedish formats) to areas that use soft scores (much of west coast and central US) and look at army diversity. Hard comp is a zero sum in this mental exercise, because all it does is move the goalposts. People still take the most efficient and optimized thing allowed in the environment because there is literally no reason not to. Every event in non-soft environments tends to see the same 3-4 armies (if that many) in the top tables, while even the only slightly soft scored ones see at least half a dozen or more different armies, along with a lot more diversity between different lists of the same army. The ETC tournaments you could basically recite the entire army list once you knew what race it was and likely be 99% accurate. Conversely, the most soft score intensive event in the nation (Quake City Rumble or Waaghpaca) you would be hard pressed to find two top ten armies that even remotely resemble one another.
Note that hard comp or ladder comp, while it moves the goalposts as far as intra-army diversity goes, it can improve inter-army diversity.

Was wondering if we could do some kind of diversity index. Doing this numerically for inter-army "species richness" would be comparatively easy. Harder for intra-army. But anecdotally I completely agree - comp score systems like swedish or comp council produce a much much bigger variety of army builds.


Diversity might not be an indicator of tactical acumen, in and of itself, but mirror matches are DEFFINATELY determined by dice rolls most of the time.
Assuming equal skill I presume? Player skill is still the best indicator until you get to the level that player skill plateaus out.

Karak Norn Clansman
21-01-2014, 22:36
Of course it's exclusive. Exclusiveness or not isn't the point with composition, though it might matter much to attending players at tournaments.

The point is to encourage varied lists, where not only the most worthwhile/very best/undercosted/sometimes actually broken units show up amongst the top players at the tournament. The discussion should perhaps rather be about the topic of the exclusiveness' results. Does it succeed in any way, or does it simply shift the window of obvious strong units to another part of the army books?

Lord Inquisitor
21-01-2014, 23:08
Running uncomped does no such thing. It leaves it up to the player making the army to pick what he/she brings. That is the most inclusive thing you can do short of paying people to show up.

Yet with all this inclusive choice, people tend to bring the same things, largely based on the optimum choices. Soft comp increases the number of viable strategies. The net effect is of more unit choices being viable. If you give people free reign on every combination possible the odds are narrow that they will actually use the range of choices available to you. Rewarding sub-par choices and making them viable increases variation used on the table as you can both use the optimum choices and use the sub-optimal choices and (ideally) both are a viable path to victory. Comp (for a competitive player) opens up unit choices that are effectively excluded in uncomped competition. I may have access to yhettees and giants in uncomped play but I won't touch them if I'm able to take maneaters and ironblasters. Soft comp allows me to include units I would not normally use. This is what I meant by "more inclusive". But I'm not going to argue over the definition of the word. It improves the thing that actually matters - the diversity of armies and builds actually used on the tabletop.

Tae
21-01-2014, 23:10
Comp events certainly promote greater list diversity than non comp events.

The ToS events at the end of 7th / beginning of 8th had the entirety of the top tables filled with MSU daemons (almost all units of horrors + KOS + maxed out flames), No touch DE lists (ring if hotek, shade spam! dark riders, double hydra) or VC bunker lists (ghoul horde (before hordes were cool), skeleton bunker behind with a vampire with the item of transfer WS combined with fencers blades (i.e. go go WS10 ghouls) and 2 black coaches).

And I mean literally the same. We walked past tables 1-10 after lunch on Sunday and the lists were, excluding the odd few skeletons here and there, the same.

Personally I believe that this illustrates how comp actually requires more tactics as your crutches have been removed. But in a game based on the randomness of dice I think any debate about variable tactical requirements is irrelevant.

Tetengo
21-01-2014, 23:57
The idea behind comp is to make the game more tactical (because armies are supposed to be balanced, so it's come down to pure skill and tactics rather than what's in your army list that wins you the game). It doesn't always (read: ever) work out like that because comp is written by gamers, not game designers. Scammel was absolutely right, things now (in ETC for example) are comped for comps sake.

However, after going to a few uncomped tournaments, I would have to say a small amount of comp is definitely a good thing. It may just shift the most viable units around, but if it meant I wouldn't play WoC in pretty much half of all my games then I'd be happier.

Karak Norn Clansman
22-01-2014, 07:43
One of the... most comic kinds of comp systems was at a large one in Sweden some years ago (the one where I entered with a Miner army without Anvil of Doom). It was a 2000 pts or 2250 pts tournament during 7th edition, and might have been back in 2007.

The tournament arrangers actually made Dark Elves enter the tournament with 250 to 500 pts smaller armies than most other players, whilst Beastmen and Wood Elves got 250 to 500 extra points to choose from. There was probably some minus for VC and DoC as well.

That's an indicator of 7th edition's gross imbalance if ever I saw one. DoC, VC and DE still pulled off good results from their matches.

Lord Solar Plexus
22-01-2014, 08:21
Comp definitively makes games more tactical. The example IcedCrow gave is a prime example. 6-dicing a big spell is not tactical. Shooting a battery of cannon is not tactical. Throwing a horde of Trolls at something is not tactical.

Limits to the number of warmachines, the number of PD and unit size caps mean you actually have to use positioning, flee baits, double charges, flanking, magic support etc. Charging with half a score of monstrous cavalry is relatively easy; when this is capped, every unit suddenly needs some friends around.

I can only speak for myself of course but comp has in the past encouraged me to take usually suboptimal units.


The whole point of comp is exclusive, not inclusive. So by default it requires far less tactics, skill, and testicular fortitude(joking, don't stroke out) to play in that environment.

Au contraire. The whole point is the exclusion of less tactical elements, so by definition comped games are more tactical.

Spiney Norman
22-01-2014, 11:01
Comp definitively makes games more tactical. The example IcedCrow gave is a prime example. 6-dicing a big spell is not tactical. Shooting a battery of cannon is not tactical. Throwing a horde of Trolls at something is not tactical.

Limits to the number of warmachines, the number of PD and unit size caps mean you actually have to use positioning, flee baits, double charges, flanking, magic support etc. Charging with half a score of monstrous cavalry is relatively easy; when this is capped, every unit suddenly needs some friends around.

I can only speak for myself of course but comp has in the past encouraged me to take usually suboptimal units.



Au contraire. The whole point is the exclusion of less tactical elements, so by definition comped games are more tactical.

Meh, I kind of disagree with that, you still need tactical awareness to successfully deploy even the most broken of netlists, there are different tactics that come into play as comp rules move the goalposts of what you are aiming at. The very fact that comp encourages you to bring weaker units (i.e. units that are tactically less versatile or less useful) demonstrates this very well. Comp encourages the use of different tactics than an uncomped environment, not more and certainly not less.

Even the three personal bugbears you mentioned still require sound tactical decisions to deploy them, 6-dicing a purple sun on the first turn when your opponents army is still 30" away is not going to win you the game, continually shelling a night goblin horde with your cannon battery isn't either and charging your troll horde into a Phoenix guard bus with the banner of eternal flame is likewise not a tactically sound thing to do. Just because some units yield greater rewards when deployed in a tactically sound way does not make them 'less tactical'.

Lord Solar Plexus
22-01-2014, 12:35
Well, those goalposts are pretty far apart. :) The tactical acumen needed to decide whether to shoot a cannon at 5 Goblins or a monster is marginal, and the act itself is dice rolling. Certainly one could also misuse a Demon Prince by never moving it - that's about the same "tactical mistake" as a 30" PS - or run a good unit into its only hard counter but that doesn't prove anything. These things often just run on rails because they have few to no drawbacks.

Weaker units are not tactically less versatile, they're weaker stat- and ruleswise, and players need to compensate through tactics. Of course good comp affects both sides but still they simply don't allow for many mistakes. A DP or Steam Tank loses a combat, heyho, I'm unbreakable, there's just no need to plan anything. A unit of Spears or Handgunners though has a lot more to fear from even basic stuff. Now of course neither a DP nor Steam Tank are unbeatable but they're very forgiving. Those weaker units often absolutely require good play in all phases because they cannot take on such a wide range of units just so.

Comp often takes out the crutches. Big unit with BotWD? Dwellers. Sure, you need to remember that you could lose your mage but that's about it. Actually having to defeat it in other phases, with small buffs here and there and without getting stuck is a much bigger challenge simply because you need to get potentially multiple units into position, divert, avoid other enemies and so on. Now all of that also happens in pure WFB but with the big cudgels available, there's often no need to resort to more complex maneouvers.

Dark Side Duke
22-01-2014, 12:48
This was spawned from the comp thread below, and broke out into its own thread because while it deals with comp it also deals with a different subject.

I have heard many times over the many years of playing that harder lists give you more tactics, while softer lists require less tactics and are easy to play (meaning if you are playing a game where both sides are not min/maxing, that the game is easier and provides less strategy and tactics)

Here's my counter:

In 1998 I started into the tournament min/max scene. My first tournament exposure was in 40k. My hard list was 14 starcannons in a 1500 point list. The skill required to use this? Zero. With 42 S6 AP2 shots a turn, a meta that was heavily dominated by 3+ save units, and powers like GUIDE to give me re-rolls, I lost three games in two years out of nearly 100 tournament games total (to nids and orks). The catalyst that started me to collect this list? IN 1998 my first tournament army (Dark Angels) was tabled in three turns by this list and the eldar player told me after the game he liked the eldar list he ran (14 starcannons) because it was challenging for him and advanced and hard to use. Challenge accepted, I took it and ran with it and did very well with it, but it was easily the easiest 40k list I ever ran in my life.

My tournament fantasy army was predominantly the black knight bus led by four vampires. Again - an army that took advantage and exploited fear and autobreak, won me many trophies and high placing in both Baltimore and Chicago's Grand Tournaments. I lost a handful of times. The skill required? Point bus at most expensive enemy unit, move forward. So long as I won combat by one and they weren't unbreakable or immune to fear (which was not common) I was able to auto break them and reap huge amounts of victory points.

So let's discuss - how exactly harder lists require more tactics to play properly than softer lists do. It is a common phrase I hear and I'd like to debate it.

Agreed. Playing with a broken list is a lot easier for the controlling army. Far more challenging for the challenger.

I remember that eldar list by the way. Worked real well considering 80+% of your opponents were space marine players.

Dark Side Duke
22-01-2014, 13:03
Comp definitively makes games more tactical. The example IcedCrow gave is a prime example. 6-dicing a big spell is not tactical. Shooting a battery of cannon is not tactical. Throwing a horde of Trolls at something is not tactical.

Limits to the number of warmachines, the number of PD and unit size caps mean you actually have to use positioning, flee baits, double charges, flanking, magic support etc. Charging with half a score of monstrous cavalry is relatively easy; when this is capped, every unit suddenly needs some friends around.

I can only speak for myself of course but comp has in the past encouraged me to take usually suboptimal units.



Au contraire. The whole point is the exclusion of less tactical elements, so by definition comped games are more tactical.

Really? Do you understand what calculated risks and target priority is? 6-dicing a spell is a gamble. Gambling is a tactic. Potentially just as risky as attempting a crazy charge. Your "tactical" examples are used in warhammer and comphammer equally.

You guys are obsessed with tactics=movement phase. Which spells to cast, how much risk to take, which targets to shoot, all are valid TACTICS. Play against someone who doesn't know how to do those things and it doesn't matter how much cheese they bring, it'll be an easy game.

logan054
22-01-2014, 13:06
6-dicing a purple sun on the first turn when your opponents army is still 30" away is not going to win you the game, continually shelling a night goblin horde with your cannon battery isn't either and charging your troll horde into a

I don't regard using common sense and not doing idiotic things as tactical, it's simply not playing like a mor*n (why is that word censored lol!).

IcedCrow
22-01-2014, 13:35
Agreed. Playing with a broken list is a lot easier for the controlling army. Far more challenging for the challenger.

I remember that eldar list by the way. Worked real well considering 80+% of your opponents were space marine players.

Yessir. I was banking on that all my opponents were space marines and wouldn't you know it, 9 times out of 10 it was a space marine who had the unfortunate experience to stand opposite of me while my starcannons took out 2 units a turn because I also banked on tournaments having little or no terrain for cover. The only tournament I went to that had any real terrain was the Chicago GT and even then it wasn't by much.

ewar
22-01-2014, 14:01
6-dicing a spell is a gamble. Gambling is a tactic. Potentially just as risky as attempting a crazy charge.

hhmm... you are talking about tactics right? I'm not sure Nurgle DP with PSOX is going to make Sun Tzu turn in his grave at the majesty of your advanced tactical acumen.

The simple fact is that comp = more variety in units seen. Those units are often weaker and require a bit more thought to use well, which makes the movement phase more important. I don't mind playing uncomped or comped, but generally there are a few silly lists which can be made in uncomped play that ruing things for everyone.

Fighting against Fozzriks abuse or Malorians old suggestion of a single unit army of ogres does not make for a tactical game.

SteveW
22-01-2014, 14:21
hhmm... you are talking about tactics right? I'm not sure Nurgle DP with PSOX is going to make Sun Tzu turn in his grave at the majesty of your advanced tactical acumen. When that nurgle Dp has to hide until you tie up all the units that wreck his face... Tactics


The simple fact is that comp = more variety in units seen. Opinion =/= fact
Those units are often weaker and require a bit more thought to use well, which makes the movement phase more important. I don't mind playing uncomped or comped, but generally there are a few silly lists which can be made in uncomped play that ruing things for everyone. There are ways to beat every list, you can either learn those things or comp them out. One of those options requires tactics.


Fighting against Fozzriks abuse or Malorians old suggestion of a single unit army of ogres does not make for a tactical game. So a list that can at best hope for a draw is your example of broken and needing comp? What scenario can this list win?

theunwantedbeing
22-01-2014, 14:58
Not having access to any point and click elements, or simply having those elements nerfed to the point where they're no longer as powerful/useful makes the game harder and more tactical.
So comped would be more tactical and less easy, rather than less tactical and easier.

The only reason people like to claim a list is hard and difficult to use when in reality it isn't, is because people like to feel superior and for the most part nobody can really be bothered to tell the otherwise.
My eldar list is super hard to use! I am just a tactical genius!
Must be true, I sure as hell can't be bothered to do anything but take his word for it because he always wins.

Hence you see people defending how point and click lists are tactical and hard to use.

Scammel
22-01-2014, 15:06
When that nurgle Dp has to hide until you tie up all the units that wreck his face... Tactics


Turn 1 - Stick behind tree.

Turn 2 - Charge pretty much anything you damn well like. The units that 'wreck his face' amount to cannon and not a lot else.

Dark Side Duke
22-01-2014, 15:06
hhmm... you are talking about tactics right? I'm not sure Nurgle DP with PSOX is going to make Sun Tzu turn in his grave at the majesty of your advanced tactical acumen.

The simple fact is that comp = more variety in units seen. Those units are often weaker and require a bit more thought to use well, which makes the movement phase more important. I don't mind playing uncomped or comped, but generally there are a few silly lists which can be made in uncomped play that ruing things for everyone.

Fighting against Fozzriks abuse or Malorians old suggestion of a single unit army of ogres does not make for a tactical game.

Nurgle DP tossing 6 dice at Sun is a tactical risk. Comp doesn't necessarily mean more variety. All it does is limit the tactical ability of units. I.E. A Non-Casting Non-nurgle Daemon prince isn't that hard of a hit on comp especially if doesn't fly. You tactically lose mobility, resilience and offensive capabilities when the DP is comped.

You don't get more tactics out of comp, your units become less tactically versatile and you're forced to make up for it with other tactically specific units. All the same tactics are used you just get to use all your toys for a change. Sorry if I don't buy garbage units, even if they "look cool".

SteveW: you nailed it by the way, spot on.

SteveW
22-01-2014, 15:15
Turn 1 - Stick behind tree.

Turn 2 - Charge pretty much anything you damn well like. The units that 'wreck his face' amount to cannon and not a lot else.

If that tree blocks line of sight, it blocks his charge. So your scenario cannot happen.

The things that kill him dead pretty easy are, magic, all kinds of warmachines(not just cannon), and chariots(mostly for the coup de gras).

Warboss_R'ok
22-01-2014, 15:35
Will you find it easy to beat all these clanrats with only gobs? Or gobs with only skinks? Or is the game just more "easy" just for the ehll of it? It's not any easier for anybody, it's just the same, with strenghts and weaknesses swapped around.

Agreed, I think a lot of people are forgetting that if you ban some very powerful builds, then all the other builds become more powerful because warhammer is a 2-player game so strength is relative to what the opponent can bring.

IN THEORY good comp should make the game of warhammer a more skillful game by making it more balanced: in a balanced game, you have to make careful, meaningful choices, whereas if you are running the unkillable DP then in a lot of matchups it is a very unskilled game for both players. Also comp should mean that there is more skill involved at the list-building stage - there should be multiple viable and EQUALLY POWERFUL builds for every army, and you should have to work out which one suits a particular meta or a particular opponent, bearing in mind that s/he is trying to do the same to you.

For example, compare warhammer to starcraft 2. SC2 is very finely balanced between Zerg, Protoss and Terran, and Blizzard has to spend a huge amount of time making sure that none of the matchups are an autowin for one side.

Spiney Norman
22-01-2014, 16:36
I don't regard using common sense and not doing idiotic things as tactical, it's simply not playing like a mor*n (why is that word censored lol!).

To a certain extent that is true, but everything in the game requires a reasonable grasp of tactics to make it work well.

I just wish people would stop pretending crap units are 'tactical units', they're not, some units are just crap.

Phazael
22-01-2014, 16:42
Assuming equal skill I presume? Player skill is still the best indicator until you get to the level that player skill plateaus out.

Up to a point, yeah skill determines things, but in my experience once the armies hit a certain level of power, you only need to be good enough to not make a mistake with the army. Once you hit the point where the list plays itself, like your average Chaos Dwarf Kadai Cheerleading army or your basic Khurgle + Horrors army, skill stops mattering as much as who gets the lucky break with dice rolls. It only takes so much skill, after all, to decide what to gateway and cannon.

AmaroK
22-01-2014, 16:47
Nurgle DP tossing 6 dice at Sun is a tactical risk. Comp doesn't necessarily mean more variety. All it does is limit the tactical ability of units. I.E. A Non-Casting Non-nurgle Daemon prince isn't that hard of a hit on comp especially if doesn't fly. You tactically lose mobility, resilience and offensive capabilities when the DP is comped.

You don't get more tactics out of comp, your units become less tactically versatile and you're forced to make up for it with other tactically specific units. All the same tactics are used you just get to use all your toys for a change. Sorry if I don't buy garbage units, even if they "look cool".

SteveW: you nailed it by the way, spot on.

Tossing 6 dice at a spell is something than you, me or even a trained monkey could do with no effort (no comparision intended, btw :D). You get more tactics when you are more restricted in your general availabity, you try to get the best of what you have. The most overpowered your units are, the less tactic is needed to win. If you have a 40+ maneater unit full of characters a, what are you suposed to do with it? Either I move or I charge, end of the question, you dont have anything else to do but rolling dice for your cannons (surely you have a pair with such a list), magic and maybe combat. If target priority is all the tactics we can hope for, WHF can be a pretty depressing game to play, all left to dice and reaction to those dice results,and nothing else.

In short, in my experience, yes, comped games usually give more tactical games. Even Jervis Johnson pointed out at the beggining of 8th that games should be good at 2k to fall short in what you can get in your army. But whoīs JJ anyways... :D

Phazael
22-01-2014, 16:52
PS- Also, I am generally against hard or point comped systems for a couple of reasons, but I like soft scores when done correctly (admittedly difficult). Hard comp tells people what they can and cannot bring and often fails to keep pace with the metagame. It also tends to lack any sort of context, which is to say, something powerful in an otherwise weak army is generally acceptable, but these systems often fail to properly consider the army as a whole. The system I prefer has enough soft scores that someone who is taking Dark Elf Netbuild probably won't win overall (unless he is both a phenomenal painter and a great sport) but he can still faceroll his way through the other dbags for his 5-0 and best general trophy. In this sense, everyone gets to play the game they want.

In my personal experience, the people who tend to argue strongly against comp bracketed rounds and soft scores are the guys who bring cheeseball lists and are looking to club a few baby seals in the early rounds, rather than have to face a list that is on equal footing with theirs. If these guys what to bring out the full frontal male nudity cheese and go for best general, I am totally fine with that but little Tommy fluffy Tomb King player should not have to get his poop pushed in in round one or two by someone like that. Plus the requirement for overall should be more than "I brought the filth and got lucky on my draws".

AmaroK
22-01-2014, 16:54
To a certain extent that is true, but everything in the game requires a reasonable grasp of tactics to make it work well.

I just wish people would stop pretending crap units are 'tactical units', they're not, some units are just crap.

It is not that some crap units are "tactical units". Itīs more about that taking the best of crap units need more tactical acumen than taking the best from already good/overpowered/autoplay ones. And some of those good units are usually not hard to use, lets be honest. nurgle DP? ironblasters? big unit with the World Dragon banner? Many examples can be given, but you know what I mean.

P.S. Totally agree with Phazael. Hear to this guy even if his avatar is Matt Ward (or maybe because of it, who knows XD)

Phazael
22-01-2014, 16:57
To a certain extent that is true, but everything in the game requires a reasonable grasp of tactics to make it work well.

I just wish people would stop pretending crap units are 'tactical units', they're not, some units are just crap.

Some units are just crap, but lets be clear here. If cannons are comped, whether through a hard comp system, point comp system, or soft scores, a whole class of middle of the road monsters suddenly becomes playable. If there is some sort of comp consequence to making giant deathstars, then a ton of MSU style units suddenly become a lot more viable to play. I can do well in compy places with my combat wood elf army (and point of fact, I have), but in a no holds barred event it has no chance of doing anything but being a punching bag for most armies.

SteveW
22-01-2014, 17:02
In my personal experience, the people who tend to argue strongly against comp bracketed rounds and soft scores are the guys who bring cheeseball lists and are looking to club a few baby seals in the early rounds, rather than have to face a list that is on equal footing with theirs. If these guys what to bring out the full frontal male nudity cheese and go for best general, I am totally fine with that but little Tommy fluffy Tomb King player should not have to get his poop pushed in in round one or two by someone like that. Plus the requirement for overall should be more than "I brought the filth and got lucky on my draws".

I am 100% against comp and you can see the types of lists I bring in my batreps. They are not even close to "cheeseball" but I often encounter those types of lists.

Phazael
22-01-2014, 17:06
That would make you one guy out of literally hundreds, but you already know this.

logan054
22-01-2014, 17:18
To a certain extent that is true, but everything in the game requires a reasonable grasp of tactics to make it work well.

I just wish people would stop pretending crap units are 'tactical units', they're not, some units are just crap.

Lets be clear here, with purple sun, knowing that using most of the dice in my magic phase, risking losing what dice I have because I have one a 1 in 6 chance of getting the distance I want (which still won't have a massive effect) is a bad idea because the risk heavily out weighs the reward isn't a reasonable grasp of tactics, that is plan and simply common sense. I personally like comp because I found things like the double hydra and stank boring to play against, any comp that prevented that was good in my book. Just as a comp that restricts the amount of chariots a chaos army has isn't bad, the other core troops like chaos warriors are not bad choices, they are solid, I can't think of a single army that would complain about having a unit like chaos warriors in it's special section, let alone core.

Your are right, some units are just crap, others are just so op that over shadow the other choices which would otherwise be good choices.

Don Zeko
22-01-2014, 17:21
It is not that some crap units are "tactical units". Itīs more about that taking the best of crap units need more tactical acumen than taking the best from already good/overpowered/autoplay ones. And some of those good units are usually not hard to use, lets be honest. nurgle DP? ironblasters? big unit with the World Dragon banner? Many examples can be given, but you know what I mean.

P.S. Totally agree with Phazael. Hear to this guy even if his avatar is Matt Ward (or maybe because of it, who knows XD)

The flipside here is that there are also underpowered units that aren't somehow difficult to use: they're just bad. Take the flame cannon. There's no complexity to it. You shoot the thing at whatever enemy units are actually in range. It kills them or it doesn't. What the unit needs isn't a canny player, but balanced rules.

Montegue
22-01-2014, 17:22
The general southern gt has some outright bans (the tower, for example), and takes care of the rest through a heavy emphasis on soft scores. You don't win best overall unless you fight well, play well with others, and have a nice looking army. Playing well with others is tough to do if you get bad game votes for taking a jackass list. Bad game votes stack as you get more of them. This creates, in my experience, an environment in which competitive players with tough lists throw down and have fun without things getting stupid. Never had a bad game in a southern tournament.

Phazael
22-01-2014, 18:35
Texas was ok, but it was rough, at least the Alamo. It did cool off a little this year, though. You guys do love you some gunlines in texas, though.

Montegue
22-01-2014, 18:46
Texas was ok, but it was rough, at least the Alamo. It did cool off a little this year, though. You guys do love you some gunlines in texas, though.

I was actually surprised to see that many. I do an anvil line, but mostly because I want the option to play aggressively and the opportunity to hand my opponents 500 points every game. :)

Tetengo
22-01-2014, 19:02
Well this seems to be turning into a discussion of semantics really. If comp takes away your Daemon Prince's ability to fly and have a 1+ save, then you haven't lost tactics, you've lost abilities. You have to use better tactics to get the best out of that Daemon Prince than simply move turn 1, charge turn 2.

Some armies don't have the ability to kill a Daemon Prince turn 1, so comping it means a variety of armies will be seen; and since WoC players would likely use different units instead of the DP, a greater variety of lists too.

Gradek
22-01-2014, 19:04
I am 100% against comp and you can see the types of lists I bring in my batreps. They are not even close to "cheeseball" but I often encounter those types of lists.

I don't like comp restrictions on what can be used (ie special character bans), but love the idea of a comp score for seeding in tournaments and perhaps acting as a "tiebreaker" of sorts. I think seeding by comp score is by far the best way to run a tournament.

Phazael
22-01-2014, 19:13
I was actually surprised to see that many. I do an anvil line, but mostly because I want the option to play aggressively and the opportunity to hand my opponents 500 points every game. :)

I think I watched part of one of your games. I was the fat bastard playing the Slaanesh DoC army that took Santa Anna this year. I metad hard against cannons and it paid off for me. Julian beat me in a close game because I made a minor mistake early on, but with his level of skill that's all it really takes to decide the game.

SteveW
22-01-2014, 19:31
I don't like comp restrictions on what can be used (ie special character bans), but love the idea of a comp score for seeding in tournaments and perhaps acting as a "tiebreaker" of sorts. I think seeding by comp score is by far the best way to run a tournament.

Is that even "comp"? I mean seeding people in a tournament can be done however you want to without changing a single line in any book. I mean, you could seed them by the race being played or even off of paint scores.

logan054
22-01-2014, 19:36
Well this seems to be turning into a discussion of semantics really. If comp takes away your Daemon Prince's ability to fly and have a 1+ save, then you haven't lost tactics, you've lost abilities. You have to use better tactics to get the best out of that Daemon Prince than simply move turn 1, charge turn 2.

Some armies don't have the ability to kill a Daemon Prince turn 1, so comping it means a variety of armies will be seen; and since WoC players would likely use different units instead of the DP, a greater variety of lists too.

People also forget a daemon prince is M8 even without wings, besides most comps seem to only really effect nurgle daemon princes, well damn, that's a shame!!

AmaroK
22-01-2014, 19:46
The flipside here is that there are also underpowered units that aren't somehow difficult to use: they're just bad. Take the flame cannon. There's no complexity to it. You shoot the thing at whatever enemy units are actually in range. It kills them or it doesn't. What the unit needs isn't a canny player, but balanced rules.

While I get your point, some bad units are bad by themselves but not bad in play with other units, and still need more tactical thinking. In your example, a flamethrower is bad, but you can get some use of it using a sacrificial slayer unit that stop the enemy unit near the flame thrower, gets killed in your opponent turn (and its even fluffy) and leaves the enemy unit near your warmachine for an optimal use. Is it bad? yes indeed. Requielres more tactical thinking than just shootin 8 inches away from your target as it is with a regular cannon? I think so as well.

Phazael
22-01-2014, 21:16
There just is no polishing some turds, the flame cannon being an obvious example. But many units in the game do have applications in comped environments where maximum efficiency is not the sole dictator of victory in a tournament. Giants are an excellent example, as are things like Centigors, Chaos Ogres, or Thundertusks.

Tetengo
22-01-2014, 21:35
Chaos Knights would be a good example. They're a good unit, just not as good as Skullcrushers. If the latter were comped (which I don't necessarily think they should be), then Chaos Knights might see the table more.

iamtheeviltwin
22-01-2014, 21:42
Meh, I kind of disagree with that, you still need tactical awareness to successfully deploy even the most broken of netlists, there are different tactics that come into play as comp rules move the goalposts of what you are aiming at. The very fact that comp encourages you to bring weaker units (i.e. units that are tactically less versatile or less useful) demonstrates this very well. Comp encourages the use of different tactics than an uncomped environment, not more and certainly not less.

This is the reality of comp...it is not "more" or "less" tactical...it is "different" tactics. Look at any comp system and you are seeing a reflection of the personal opinion(s) of the creator(s) about how to play the game. Banning units, limiting their numbers, penalizing deathstars/big magic/cannons/monsters, etc...all that does is change the metagame for that tournament environment.

I think being able to be successful despite what comp system you are playing under is a far greater achievement than being the "best" player in a certain comp style. It shows that you are better at adapting your tactical acumen across a number of environments, rather than finding one way to abuse a certain comp system or meta-game.

Don Zeko
23-01-2014, 02:40
Chaos Knights would be a good example. They're a good unit, just not as good as Skullcrushers. If the latter were comped (which I don't necessarily think they should be), then Chaos Knights might see the table more.

That would be a better example of my point. Are skullcrushers easier to use than Chaos Knights? No, not really. They have an almost identical function in the game. Skullcrushers are just better. If WoC armies all used chaos knights instead of skullcrushers in their lists, WoC wouldn't be a more complex or challenging army, just one that is less likely to win.

Montegue
23-01-2014, 03:20
I think I watched part of one of your games. I was the fat bastard playing the Slaanesh DoC army that took Santa Anna this year. I metad hard against cannons and it paid off for me. Julian beat me in a close game because I made a minor mistake early on, but with his level of skill that's all it really takes to decide the game.

It's certainly possible. I was the anvil player who didn't have thunderers. That guy was slinging ancient power like his beard depended on it. The anvil was simultaneously incredibly successful and my downfall. And so shall it be next month, I'm sure.

dooms33ker
23-01-2014, 05:35
That would be a better example of my point. Are skullcrushers easier to use than Chaos Knights? No, not really. They have an almost identical function in the game. Skullcrushers are just better. If WoC armies all used chaos knights instead of skullcrushers in their lists, WoC wouldn't be a more complex or challenging army, just one that is less likely to win.

Your analysis of the units is flawed, methinks. The crushers are easier to use because they are better. While it is true that both units fill a very similar role, the crushers have more ubiquitous use and allow for more mistakes to be made. For example, charge a crusher unit in the flank with a unit of similar points value and there is a better chance the crushers will hold than if the charged unit had been chaos knights. Easier or harder to use simply means how forgiving a unit is to mistakes.

Another strong choice that is easier to use than its contemporaries, the daemon price, is in most top table lists because it is incredibly reliable and allows for a certain degree of error being unbreakable.

Now onto my thoughts on comp in general.

Because Warhammer uses so many random variables one can't say all tactical decisions are 100% wrong or 100% right; there may be a chance an action could have succeeded even if the odds were low. Most decisions are degrees of good and bad, not absolutes. Better units are often an exponent for those decisions. A bad player can make a mediocre decision with a good unit and win against a good player making the best decision with a poor unit. Of course a player who doesn't understand the basic principles of tactics will likely lose regardless of what they have in their army, but that's beside the point.

In my opinion the best comp system would be to rank the players based on their decision making skills and then scale it depending on the army they are using in any particular game. Of course if you want a quantifiable yard stick to measure how good a player is in general, Warhammer isn't the game to do it with unless everyone plays with the same army and list.

Lord Solar Plexus
23-01-2014, 06:54
This is the reality of comp...it is not "more" or "less" tactical...it is "different" tactics. Look at any comp system and you are seeing a reflection of the personal opinion(s) of the creator(s) about how to play the game. Banning units, limiting their numbers, penalizing deathstars/big magic/cannons/monsters, etc...all that does is change the metagame for that tournament environment.


Well, the creators of COMBAT 8.0 developed their system because they found that it often revolved around a) killing/preserving one single unit or b) getting one spell through, probably in some combination. I don't see how building a huge undestructible unit or 6-dicing is tactical. That's just list-building or dice rolling. Of course it's your prerogative to see it differently but you won't convince me 100 Slaves or 40 WL + BotWD are somehow tactical.

It's the same reason why MSU requires more tactical thought - you cannot rely on the resilience of any single unit on a single vector to see it through.

ewar
24-01-2014, 00:23
Opinion =/= fact There are ways to beat every list, you can either learn those things or comp them out. One of those options requires tactics.


This is demonstrably wrong - if you actually went to a variety of tournaments you would see that the comped ones have a wider variety of both armies and list types within those armies, purely because the most obvious choices are generally restricted.


You don't get more tactics out of comp, your units become less tactically versatile and you're forced to make up for it with other tactically specific units. All the same tactics are used you just get to use all your toys for a change. Sorry if I don't buy garbage units, even if they "look cool".

So you think 40 WL + BOTWD takes as much thought to use 'tactically' as the equivalent points spread across a selection of other units? Just the simple mechanics of deploying and moving 3 or more units instead of one big one means you're already using more tactics.

I get it, you like playing against the cheeseball lists used by the top 3 or 4 armies, each to their own. But don't pretend it doesn't devolve into rock/paper/scissors at that point (which is where I think luck of the draw takes over from player skill to a large degree).

SteveW
24-01-2014, 00:48
This is demonstrably wrong

. Demonstrate it then. Show me something that cannot be defeated without comp.

Montegue
24-01-2014, 00:59
Sure, it can be beat, by the other two top net lists. There's a holy trinity forming - Dark Elves, Warriors, and High Elves. Possibly Deamons might form a 4-way top dog list. And I don't see folks winning with much else in an uncomped environment.

ewar
24-01-2014, 00:59
Who said anything about something being undefeatable?

I said comp = more variety in lists, to which you responded 'opinion =/= fact' when I and many others on here have said that the whole point of comp is to provide more variety in the lists seen at tournaments (and which is supported when you actually go to those tournaments).

I have seen someone with more willingness than me, pull out the rankings at comped and uncomped tournaments and there is a significantly greater spread of armies at those tournament (and in my experience the intra-army variety is better too). Those who like uncomped tournaments say that taking some options away must in and of itself result in less variety of lists, which is just so painfully untrue.

There are some units/items/combinations which are so obviously and measurably better than other units that they render the other choices in the book moot. Restricting the availability of these things means you see players bring more different lists, it's pretty simple.

WhispersofBlood
24-01-2014, 01:09
Chaos Knights would be a good example. They're a good unit, just not as good as Skullcrushers. If the latter were comped (which I don't necessarily think they should be), then Chaos Knights might see the table more.

The irony is often the Hellcannon is comped as well, leaving little reason not to take Hellcannon + skullcrushers + Chimera + Slaanesh DP(or 3++ 1+, Mr1, Stubborn Chaos Lord) which honestly is probably better over all than the typical Meta chaos list, since it is atleast multi-facited. Which still doesn't include Chaos Knights, unless it is extremely contrived.

There are ways to make units more attractive though, including terrain like marshes and rivers makes monstrous cav a whole lot more dangerous to use. I like Crossroads-gt's use of scoring units that need a rank and command to take objectives, gives cavalry a distinct advantage in that regard as you can usually afford an surplus model easier on Cav than Monstrous cav. But this hurts other armies like Dwarves who lack fast MSUish units, and rely heavily on battle line tactics. I understand it is an old book and not everything can be accounted for, which is why I like random scenarios so much, I find them mostly balanced so long as you are aware that you could get anyone of of 6 deployment types, and they encourage a variety of unit types by default.

Lord Inquisitor
24-01-2014, 01:24
This is the reality of comp...it is not "more" or "less" tactical...it is "different" tactics. Look at any comp system and you are seeing a reflection of the personal opinion(s) of the creator(s) about how to play the game. Banning units, limiting their numbers, penalizing deathstars/big magic/cannons/monsters, etc...all that does is change the metagame for that tournament environment.

I think being able to be successful despite what comp system you are playing under is a far greater achievement than being the "best" player in a certain comp style. It shows that you are better at adapting your tactical acumen across a number of environments, rather than finding one way to abuse a certain comp system or meta-game.

This is fairly accurate. I really don't think with or without comp is more tactical. Trading deathstars and cheesy combos is usually just as challenging as MMU soft armies. Over the years I've found trading blows with the nastiest cheese still requires the same skill and so many times I've faced an inexperienced player with a rock hard netlist and just taken them apart because the list doesn't play itself.

I'd also agree that playing a variety of comp is not just a great way to test your adaptability but also really fun! My favourite comp by far is rotating through a variety of different systems. Keeps things fresh.

That said, certain comp systems do provide a lot more variety and as such I tend to find them more interesting to play. And I think that if you comp out the best items where everyone has rock hard units that are stubborn and unkillable lords, if you play more with the mid-tier units you get an arguably more interesting game. As you say, different tactics, but often a bit more rewarding as players can't rely so much on tried-and-tested combos. I don't want to say "crutches" as that implies lower level of skill required but the sort of unit like the unkillable stubborn lord that can be thrown in front of anything and roadblock them, comped lists often require more specialisation and army wide tactics to succeed. I guess what I'm saying is that comped games can feel more like a (fantasy) battle simulator than a game about getting the best combo.

Montegue
24-01-2014, 02:59
This is fairly accurate. I really don't think with or without comp is more tactical. Trading deathstars and cheesy combos is usually just as challenging as MMU soft armies. Over the years I've found trading blows with the nastiest cheese still requires the same skill and so many times I've faced an inexperienced player with a rock hard netlist and just taken them apart because the list doesn't play itself.

I'd also agree that playing a variety of comp is not just a great way to test your adaptability but also really fun! My favourite comp by far is rotating through a variety of different systems. Keeps things fresh.

That said, certain comp systems do provide a lot more variety and as such I tend to find them more interesting to play. And I think that if you comp out the best items where everyone has rock hard units that are stubborn and unkillable lords, if you play more with the mid-tier units you get an arguably more interesting game. As you say, different tactics, but often a bit more rewarding as players can't rely so much on tried-and-tested combos. I don't want to say "crutches" as that implies lower level of skill required but the sort of unit like the unkillable stubborn lord that can be thrown in front of anything and roadblock them, comped lists often require more specialisation and army wide tactics to succeed. I guess what I'm saying is that comped games can feel more like a (fantasy) battle simulator than a game about getting the best combo.


Magic the Gathering has highly comped systems, and it works. Uncomped magic would be the old dirty,days of all dual lands, full mix and lotus, and land destruction.

SteveW
24-01-2014, 04:45
Magic the Gathering has highly comped systems, and it works. Uncomped magic would be the old dirty,days of all dual lands, full mix and lotus, and land destruction.

Please don't use MTG to try and rationalize something in a real game. I'm not sure but I think it's a bannable offense...

Archon of Death
24-01-2014, 05:02
Magic the Gathering has highly comped systems, and it works. Uncomped magic would be the old dirty,days of all dual lands, full mix and lotus, and land destruction.

No... That's like saying Advanced Dungeons and Dragons is totally viable in Pathfinder. Or like bringing your first edition Warhammer book and trying to play in 8th. Just because the rules are written on cards, doesn't mean they're supposed to be compatible.

Also, many of the cards that are restricted/banned in magic are the equivalent of Wizards doing an Errata.

Spiney Norman
24-01-2014, 23:39
This is fairly accurate. I really don't think with or without comp is more tactical. Trading deathstars and cheesy combos is usually just as challenging as MMU soft armies. Over the years I've found trading blows with the nastiest cheese still requires the same skill and so many times I've faced an inexperienced player with a rock hard netlist and just taken them apart because the list doesn't play itself.

Yep, totally agree. Unfortunately 'less tactical' in the context of this thread has just become a slur for "types of army I dislike".

Montegue
25-01-2014, 03:18
Gus, the reason I mentioned MtG was that it's a longstanding game with a successful history if competitive play and comp in the form of banned and restricted lists...

Lordcypress
25-01-2014, 03:45
Wow, this thread has a lot of problems. Firstly how can one say that Comped lists vs. Ard Boy'z lists has anymore tactics involved than the other? That's just ridiculous. Its like saying "hey I have a fishing rod with worm and hook, you have a fishing rod with a worm and hook lets see who catches more fish". Then the next day we try to both catch fish with our bare hands. Its all relative. If I said your only allowed to bring your most powerful army list to a tournament. Then the next tournament I said your only allowed to bring fast cavalry units. Which tournament would you think acts more like a chess match? Power builds doesn't mean more tactics.

Nkari
25-01-2014, 03:48
When you dont have a super unit that can basicly beat any other unit solo, you automatically need to use more tactics to win rather than point the uber killy unit in the right direction and charge..

SteveW
25-01-2014, 04:24
When you dont have a super unit that can basicly beat any other unit solo, you automatically need to use more tactics to win rather than point the uber killy unit in the right direction and charge..
When you both have a "super unit", neither is super. Instead they are just units.

SteveW
25-01-2014, 04:25
Wow, this thread has a lot of problems. Firstly how can one say that Comped lists vs. Ard Boy'z lists has anymore tactics involved than the other? That's just ridiculous. Its like saying "hey I have a fishing rod with worm and hook, you have a fishing rod with a worm and hook lets see who catches more fish". Then the next day we try to both catch fish with our bare hands. Its all relative. If I said your only allowed to bring your most powerful army list to a tournament. Then the next tournament I said your only allowed to bring fast cavalry units. Which tournament would you think acts more like a chess match? Power builds doesn't mean more tactics.

It's more like a guy trying to fish in an anything goes contest and telling the other guy he can't dynamite fish. :P

Lord Solar Plexus
25-01-2014, 08:31
Firstly how can one say that Comped lists vs. Ard Boy'z lists has anymore tactics involved than the other?


In the very same way as you say the opposite, with the help of a keyboard. :p Or was that a trick question? :eyebrows:


When you both have a "super unit", neither is super. Instead they are just units.

And then people complain that WFB is just "meet in the middle, roll dice, determine winner". Either way, they are not just units. They are units in which a huge portion of the army's/armies' points is tied up in. It's less combined arms, it's more self-sufficient. One doesn't need to find as many (not "no") in-game solutions because these units have solutions built in at the list-making step - and that is not tactical.

You guys and your metaphors... ;)

ewar
25-01-2014, 22:42
When you both have a "super unit", neither is super. Instead they are just units.

Unless the army you play doesn't have a super unit or a unit as close to super as your opponents.

I have a few armies, and far and away the most 'tactical' are my tomb kings because they are just downright harder to win with; in the same way that playing with my LM during the first year of 8th ed was playing on easy mode.

I think the problem is that units like the current DP, mega slave blocks or previous ed Chosenstar don't really require any tactics at all to use competently because they have no real weaknesses. Those kind of units aren't generally bothered by being outmanouvred etc which takes away a large part of the fun for me.

Spiney Norman
25-01-2014, 22:57
Unless the army you play doesn't have a super unit or a unit as close to super as your opponents.

I have a few armies, and far and away the most 'tactical' are my tomb kings because they are just downright harder to win with; in the same way that playing with my LM during the first year of 8th ed was playing on easy mode.

I think the problem is that units like the current DP, mega slave blocks or previous ed Chosenstar don't really require any tactics at all to use competently because they have no real weaknesses. Those kind of units aren't generally bothered by being outmanouvred etc which takes away a large part of the fun for me.

I think you are confusing "tactical" with "weaker and badly designed", saying tomb kings are more tactical suggests that you could get exactly the same results out of a tomb king army as you could out of a dark elf or chaos warrior if you were smart enough, and that just doesn't bear out.

Every army is tactical, no army is more of less tactical than any other because a tactically aware player will always better better results out of whatever army he is using than someone who just marches their army across the board with no battle plan and no idea what they are supposed to be doing.

There's always been this bizarre kind of myth that weaker armies like TK can have their potential magically unlocked by a tactical genius and when played at the top end they are almost unstoppable. Unfortunately it has never been true. However good a player you are, you will always get better results with a stronger army than you will with a weaker army, if you can win consistently with tomb kings, imagine what you could do with an army of chaos warriors...

SteveW
25-01-2014, 23:18
snipped for space saving.

Actually some armies have more viable tactics available to them making them "more tactical". Take for instance Dwarfs vs. High elves, one has shooting and combat to choose from while the other can go for shooting, magic, fast cav, monster mash, elite cav, elite infantry, and more I'm probably missing. That means High Elves are more tactical than Dwarfs are because more tactics can be used with them.

ewar
26-01-2014, 00:42
I think you are confusing "tactical" with "weaker and badly designed", saying tomb kings are more tactical suggests that you could get exactly the same results out of a tomb king army as you could out of a dark elf or chaos warrior if you were smart enough, and that just doesn't bear out.

Every army is tactical, no army is more of less tactical than any other because a tactically aware player will always better better results out of whatever army he is using than someone who just marches their army across the board with no battle plan and no idea what they are supposed to be doing.

There's always been this bizarre kind of myth that weaker armies like TK can have their potential magically unlocked by a tactical genius and when played at the top end they are almost unstoppable. Unfortunately it has never been true. However good a player you are, you will always get better results with a stronger army than you will with a weaker army, if you can win consistently with tomb kings, imagine what you could do with an army of chaos warriors...

I agree you'll never get the same results with a weaker army, but using in game tactics =/= winning more often. Playing against the steam tank, cannon wall and DGK Empire army with my Tomb Kings is bruuuuutally hard and I play much more tactically than I do when facing them with my Lizardmen.

I think what I'm trying to convey is that some games/armies/scenarios require more in depth tactical play to get a good result (which is what I find with my TK and why I persist perversely playing with them more than my other armies at the moment). Obviously you could say that any army is using tactics by just moving and fighting but to me those aren't tactics, in the same way that making sure you Nurgle DP doesn't 6 dice PSUN when out of range doesn't qualify as a tactic - it's just the most basic common sense.


Actually some armies have more viable tactics available to them making them "more tactical". Take for instance Dwarfs vs. High elves, one has shooting and combat to choose from while the other can go for shooting, magic, fast cav, monster mash, elite cav, elite infantry, and more I'm probably missing. That means High Elves are more tactical than Dwarfs are because more tactics can be used with them.

Jesus, I think that's the first thing you've ever said that I've agreed with, maybe the internet broke somewhere?! :)

SteveW
26-01-2014, 01:38
Jesus, I think that's the first thing you've ever said that I've agreed with, maybe the internet broke somewhere?! :)

Hahaha! That made my night. Thanks.

Lord Solar Plexus
26-01-2014, 08:15
I think you are confusing "tactical" with "weaker and badly designed", saying tomb kings are more tactical suggests that you could get exactly the same results out of a tomb king army as you could out of a dark elf or chaos warrior if you were smart enough, and that just doesn't bear out.


Nope. Saying TK are more tactical doesn't mean that at all. Anyways, how does it follow that you could get the same results? How could "more" possibly suggest "the same"? Please explain.

They are indeed more tactical - or rather, have to be played more tactical/smarter to get on the same level - because they are weaker, since being weaker means they have to use tactics instead of stats or special rules. Now TK are an exceptionally bad example because they a) cannot march and b) cannot flee, so a vast portion of tactics goes out of the window. In one popular comp system around here, they can however march, which helps.



Every army is tactical, no army is more of less tactical than any other because a tactically aware player will always better better results out of whatever army he is using than someone who just marches their army across the board with no battle plan and no idea what they are supposed to be doing.


Again, the conclusion does not follow from your premise: One of the armies in that scenario apparently isn't tactical because the player isn't. However, player competence only says something about player competence, not army "tacticalness" - or more importantly and to the point, the set of rules.

yabbadabba
26-01-2014, 08:38
I think the variations in this preposition are far more complex than just the armies involved. I do think that if all things are equal comp does not necessarily encourage diversity, as it is comp combined with other aspects, scenarios vp focus etc, that forces that diversity.

Spiney Norman
26-01-2014, 08:53
Actually some armies have more viable tactics available to them making them "more tactical". Take for instance Dwarfs vs. High elves, one has shooting and combat to choose from while the other can go for shooting, magic, fast cav, monster mash, elite cav, elite infantry, and more I'm probably missing. That means High Elves are more tactical than Dwarfs are because more tactics can be used with them.

That's probably a fair comment, but it can equally be pointed out that high elves have had two army books worth of development since dwarfs were last revisited, if you compare the current dwarf book to the 6th edition high elf army book they look much more equal. I think dwarfs will get a lot more options in their new book, whether they will get access to magic in its traditional form or something a bit more creative with runes remains to be seen. If we confine ourselves to the 8th edition army books I don't really see any that are more or less tactical than any others, just some that are stronger and some that are weaker.


I think what I'm trying to convey is that some games/armies/scenarios require more in depth tactical play to get a good result (which is what I find with my TK and why I persist perversely playing with them more than my other armies at the moment). Obviously you could say that any army is using tactics by just moving and fighting but to me those aren't tactics, in the same way that making sure you Nurgle DP doesn't 6 dice PSUN when out of range doesn't qualify as a tactic - it's just the most basic common sense.

So I think what you're saying is that some armies allow you be lazier than others? My point is that you could play your Lizardmen army with the same "in depth tactics" that are required by your Tomb King army and get a better result with them, the fact that you don't need to among your current group says to me that Lizardmen are a stronger army than TK (as if anyone needed to tell me that).

I started my tomb kings army under the previous army book, and that was much, much worse than the current one so after playing with that for a number of years and learning to exploit every tactical advantage with it I'm actually having a pretty good time with the current book.

Spiney Norman
26-01-2014, 09:01
Again, the conclusion does not follow from your premise: One of the armies in that scenario apparently isn't tactical because the player isn't. However, player competence only says something about player competence, not army "tacticalness" - or more importantly and to the point, the set of rules.

No, my premise is that you can apply advanced tactics to all armies and get an increase in their effectiveness on the table, its not like Tomb Kings rewards the use of advanced tactics but warriors of chaos is always just as strong no matter who is fielding it.

This touches on one of the reasons why it is sometimes claimed that comped environments are 'less tactical' (which IMHO is hogwash btw). If you are saying that "Tomb Kings are a tactical Amy because of their inbuilt weaknesses", then running a comp system whereby those weaknesses (specifically the inability to march) are removed, then you significantly take away from what made TK a tactical army.

The whole point of comp is to essentially remove the tactical disparity between all armies so that any player can compete on roughly similar level with any army correct?

underscore
26-01-2014, 10:28
The whole point of comp is to essentially remove the tactical disparity between all armies so that any player can compete on roughly similar level with any army correct?
Wouldn't removing tactical disparity mean making all the armies play similarly, or do you mean something else?

ewar
26-01-2014, 11:55
So I think what you're saying is that some armies allow you be lazier than others? My point is that you could play your Lizardmen army with the same "in depth tactics" that are required by your Tomb King army and get a better result with them, the fact that you don't need to among your current group says to me that Lizardmen are a stronger army than TK (as if anyone needed to tell me that).


Yeah that's probably true as well :)

Though the way my LM are getting the beatstick lately from my friends dark elves I think I need to start thinking more during my LM games!

Tetengo
26-01-2014, 11:55
In comped or unconped the best players will have the best tactical knowledge and that's why they win. Comp is not really more tactical for them, it's just different. Comp is for the average players, and the net list players. These guys turn up with the best army list because it is easier to play than softer lists. Then there are the other average players who bring their favourite army, these can often be beaten by the netlisters simply due to the different strengths of their lists. Comp encourages these average players to play more tactically because the "easy-mode" combos aren't available to them.

Montegue
26-01-2014, 15:04
Hmmm...thinking about the premise that more model choices makes for a more tactical army? I don't know. I mean, when I think about tactics I think about various techniques to win the battle - flanking, setting up bad choices for the enemy, putting your strength against their weakness, using terrain to your advantage, etc. I suppose different model types (cavalry, etc) allow for more variety, but I don't think the difference in terms of overall tactical thought is vast.

The difference between excellent players in a comped environment versus excellent players in an uncomped environment isn't the point. Comp means more variety that has a chance at getting to the top of the heap. Sometimes excellent players aren't as excellent as their army makes them appear. Comp makes them be excellent with non-ideal choices, and that, I think is the mark of a really good player. Let's face it - there are armies that have access to builds that are several notches above the competition. If you don't have a comped environment, those armies are likely to be on the top table for nearly every major event. Is that really because their players are good, or is it because they simply have access to a combination of tools that, mechanically, are simply better?

Comp is often slanted based on the biases of those who construct it, however. It's not a perfect system, but I'm warming to it over time.

Spiney Norman
26-01-2014, 15:13
The thing with comp is that I think a lot of people don't like the idea that tactics are as much about what you put in your list as how you use it during the game. If you bring a combination of powerful units then that is a tactical decision you have made before the game even began.

Now obviously the internet messes with that somewhat because you can go online and get your mates from your army tactics thread to write your list for you, which I guess is what people really object to.

Comp doesn't make the game, or army selection process any more or less tactical, what it does do is force you to come up with new tactics for that event, which can be fun and refreshing. Its the idea that some gamers have they they play with the same comp restrictions all the time, which seems to defeat the point somewhat.

Montegue
26-01-2014, 17:45
I wouldn't call that tactical. Grabbing ideal units is just grabbing ideal units. There's no "tactic" involved there. Tactics are actions taken to achieve an objective or overcome an obstacle. In only the most broad sense of the word can one say that choices at the Army Builder screen are "tactical".

List building is a skill, without a doubt. Comp forces people to use that skill a little more thoughtfully than "go to X website, read batreps for tournament winning armies, build that". Swedish comp, for example, forces people to include handing over victory points for taking nasty lists.

SteveW
26-01-2014, 18:25
I wouldn't call that tactical. Grabbing ideal units is just grabbing ideal units. There's no "tactic" involved there. Tactics are actions taken to achieve an objective or overcome an obstacle. In only the most broad sense of the word can one say that choices at the Army Builder screen are "tactical". I wouldn't call that tactical either, because it's part of a strategy.


List building is a skill, without a doubt. Comp forces people to use that skill a little more thoughtfully than "go to X website, read batreps for tournament winning armies, build that". Swedish comp, for example, forces people to include handing over victory points for taking nasty lists.

List building coupled with a strategy dictates what tactics you can use with your army. Now when you say, nobody can bring list A,B,C, or D and all that's left is E, you have effectively reduced all the game down to a few tactical decisions and some dice rolls having removed all the strategy leading up to the game itself.

underscore
26-01-2014, 18:43
Now when you say, nobody can bring list A,B,C, or D and all that's left is E, you have effectively reduced all the game down to a few tactical decisions and some dice rolls having removed all the strategy leading up to the game itself.
Though usually the effect is more like: remove A and B as options, open up C, D, E and F, or the option to take weaker version of A and B.

Lord Solar Plexus
26-01-2014, 19:13
No, my premise is that you can apply advanced tactics to all armies and get an increase in their effectiveness on the table


That's true - but the salient point is you do not have to in equal measure. They start in different positions. Applying the same level of tactics to each leaves them in different positions.

Anyhow, it isn't about individual armies as such but the core rules and very concrete situations. In my neck of the woods, a majority of games would revolve around getting one killer spell through with no thought as to any drawbacks - people simply felt there were none. A second phenomenon was deathstars; remove one and game over. The whole point of comp is to address this and make movement, combined arms, the chaff war, support and all that matter more. The authors of Combat 8 for example expressly claim to have made the changes they made to make the game more tactical - that is their declared goal.

Whether they achieve that is a different kettle of fish of course. For example, limiting the number of dice one can throw at any spell to four means Lore of Death and Light Councils became very popular, and in this regard fails to live up to the promise.


In comped or unconped the best players will have the best tactical knowledge and that's why they win. Comp is not really more tactical for them, it's just different. Comp is for the average players, and the net list players. These guys turn up with the best army list because it is easier to play than softer lists.

No, that is just a biased assumption on your part. :) Please explain how you know that "dirty waltzer" Friedemann, Germany's current #1, is just an average lazy git.

Having to think about movement is self-evidently more tactical than throwing dice on Dwellers I'm afraid.

Montegue
26-01-2014, 19:58
I wouldn't call that tactical either, because it's part of a strategy.



List building coupled with a strategy dictates what tactics you can use with your army. Now when you say, nobody can bring list A,B,C, or D and all that's left is E, you have effectively reduced all the game down to a few tactical decisions and some dice rolls having removed all the strategy leading up to the game itself.

Which is why I think it's useful to get our verbal ducks in a row. People who take power lists are not displaying superior tactics. They are displaying 1) their army's rulebook 2) their ability to combine the tools in that rulebook into a force on the table. Since the rules (something entirely beyond a players control) determine the power level of a given unit, I can't really call these choices "tactical" choices. The word "tactical" generally denotes skill on the table. That's the sort of skill we are theoretically trying to test in this game.

Strategy is the overall battle plan for a given battle. You can't really say "this list's strategy is X" in an environment in which there are scenarios and in which your opponents will vary from game to game. Each strategy will be different for each battle, given the circumstances of that battle and the opponent you face.

Tactics are the choices you make to inflict your strategy on the other guy. Strategy is the given overall plan for a given battle. List building might contribute to strategy in a broad sense, but not in a specific sense.

kramplarv
26-01-2014, 20:15
i find it way more fun to play with and against comp. Mainly because that limits the mechanical processes whis is defined by the game it self.

In addition: If I play against someone with comp I know we are somewhat equally interested in the game as a social event. And since most people agree on a certain comp-level beforehand I also know that my hours spent will be as equal fun for me and my opponent. No one likes onesided battles, or for that matter, one-dimensional.

When I go to a club and asks "I have a comp 13 army, I want to play against comp 10-16" I have an empirical and statistical knowledge of what the game will bring for me. If I go somewhere uncomped I can get paired against any type of list... Which is absolutely no fun. If I am to spend a few hours of my time I want it to be fun. And It is not fun to play against some lists. Regardless of how fun and nice the player is.

For example: In 6th and 6th I really disliked to play against WE because they "broke so many rules" so to speak with all their, then, crazy special rules. So I would not play against WE regardless of player or comp since that would not be fun.
Same with comp. Uncomp'd armies = unfun armies. Most of the time.

Spiney Norman
26-01-2014, 20:17
Having to think about movement is self-evidently more tactical than throwing dice on Dwellers I'm afraid.

Heaven forbid that you should run an army that would do both of these things. My wood elves take all the tools they can lay their hands on, and dwellers is one of the few ways they can actually force damage through.

theunwantedbeing
26-01-2014, 20:40
Heaven forbid that you should run an army that would do both of these things. My wood elves take all the tools they can lay their hands on, and dwellers is one of the few ways they can actually force damage through.

Although not having that does require a lot more in the way of tactics than just "6 dice dwellers at the most expensive target".

WhispersofBlood
27-01-2014, 03:33
Heaven forbid that you should run an army that would do both of these things. My wood elves take all the tools they can lay their hands on, and dwellers is one of the few ways they can actually force damage through.

Wait until you get Mindrazor, then you will know true power. Dwellers is a trifling thing in comparison. :P

But seriously I am sometimes shocked by the army specific comp packs, especially when they are so far behind the ball. A lot of Comp backs essentially ban the nurgle DP, when its the Slaanesh DP that can break a game. Limit Skullcrushers or DGK to 7 because why? That 8th Skullcrusher is really what makes it over them over the top?

HurrDurr
27-01-2014, 06:49
With these kinds of discussions I think it's better to lay down some basic principles that can be agreed upon and then state your arguments from there. Seems like some of the debates go in circles.

In my opinion a few of these would be....

1. Do more choices in any stage of the game lead to more being left in the hands of the player, and not in the book. Does having a book with better internal balance lead to more diversity in the tactics/lists/strategies you can utilize.

I think this one is an obvious yes, the fewer auto-includes in a book the better. Comped lists seem to try and accomplish this, whether they succeed or not is subjective.


2. Does limiting the most powerful choices in a book make other options look more or less valuable? Does limiting the most powerful choices in a book change up the overall strategy of that army/list or just make it perform the same strategy with less success?

This one is harder to say, some armies or units that get "nerfed/buffed" may still do the same thing they did before but with more "balanced" units.(and balance is good right?)
The danger here is that instead of making the game more balanced, something else becomes the best option.(making it a pointless shake up and a waste of time.)


3. Which leads to a more "skillful" competition, having a stronger sense of what you will be facing(the strongest options in a book left untouched), or having less sense of what you will be facing(more/every unit choice is worth while.)

I think right now it's a problem when someone says they are bringing a chaos army and you can almost guarantee which units you'll see. You won't be able to recite their list based on a gut feeling, but you can safely bet your left kidney that certain units in certain armies will be taken almost 100% of the time. mournfangs? cannons? lvl 4 wiz?



I'm for whatever creates more internal/external balance in army books, it makes sense to conclude that with more options there are more possibilities. Accounting for all of these possibilities and reacting to them accordingly both in the list building stage and in the playing stage help put better players ahead of those with less experience.

Yes all comps are more or less subjective, but so are the army books themselves. The more faith I have in GWS to balance the game, the less faith I have in these comps. The fact that there are units that are literally worthless outside of fluff/themes is tantamount to that subjectivity. Play testing an army is gathering anecdotal information(even when it's GW staff play testing it), we can all think of at least one unit that is obviously an under or over performer. Just go read the most useless unit thread, the designers aren't perfect. Some of the most balanced games out there are changed based on nothing more than large samples of anecdotal evidence. (DoTA and Starcraft are good examples)

Tetengo
27-01-2014, 13:59
No, that is just a biased assumption on your part. :) Please explain how you know that "dirty waltzer" Friedemann, Germany's current #1, is just an average lazy git.

Having to think about movement is self-evidently more tactical than throwing dice on Dwellers I'm afraid.

Sorry I don't think I made my point very clear. I didn't mean that comp is only used by average players, but that it is no more or less tactical for expert players. They will use the same sort of tactics whether comped or not. Comp only affects them in what units they can take etc., but they will still use the best tactics. Comp affects the tactics of average players is what I meant. Those who do not use expert tactics, but rely on the strengths of their list to win, will have to adapt in a comped setting. I hope that makes sense, but reading it through I'm not sure it does...

logan054
27-01-2014, 14:08
Wait until you get Mindrazor, then you will know true power. Dwellers is a trifling thing in comparison. :P

But seriously I am sometimes shocked by the army specific comp packs, especially when they are so far behind the ball. A lot of Comp backs essentially ban the nurgle DP, when its the Slaanesh DP that can break a game. Limit Skullcrushers or DGK to 7 because why? That 8th Skullcrusher is really what makes it over them over the top?

Some of the comp packs are retarded, the crossroads GT (Which I saw mentioned on another forum) is an example of this, You can understand some of it, then it starts getting silly, a Good example is being allowed less hellcannons than ironblasters. Comp is good when its done correctly, sadly some have a heavy bias towards certain armies, this is why I think simple comps are better. Have your unit cap, have you spam cap (double special, single rare), maybe restrict the total number of flyers for all armies, You really don't need to go into army specific ones bar a few things (I don't think the banner of the world dragon does anything other than give armies with lots of magical attacks a hard time).

IcedCrow
27-01-2014, 14:36
I'm not a fan of heavy comp. A few tweaks here and there work. I like scenarios that enforce comp :)

underscore
27-01-2014, 15:04
Yeah, heavy comp is something of a relic from 7th, from what I can see. There isn't really a need for anything wildly heavy now that more and more books are being updated, just a little nip and tuck.

N1AK
27-01-2014, 15:40
The whole point of comp is exclusive, not inclusive. So by default it requires far less tactics, skill, and testicular fortitude(joking, don't stroke out) to play in that environment.

List variety is considerably better in non-comp than comp tournaments. I don't buy the idea that variety relates to skill, as you seem to, but as long as you claim that you're making the case for the exact opposite position to your own. If you're trolling you're doing it poorly and if you're serious you're not helping your own case but keep stroking your testicles if that's what works for you ;)

Chess doesn't allow players to select pieces and has no randomness after all.

N1AK
27-01-2014, 15:46
why I think simple comps are better. Have your unit cap, have you spam cap (double special, single rare), maybe restrict the total number of flyers for all armies, You really don't need to go into army specific ones bar a few things (I don't think the banner of the world dragon does anything other than give armies with lots of magical attacks a hard time).

The exact opposite of my experience. Generic comp like that stops Wood Elves having two Eagles (hurting an already weak army) while not affecting the worst Warrior of Chaos builds. I like minimal comp but it needs to be army specific to be effective.

Lord Inquisitor
27-01-2014, 15:53
List variety is considerably better in non-comp than comp tournaments.

What comp systems are you talking about here? Because soft comp improves list variety quite a bit in my experience. Hard comp like ETC usually isn't concerned about intra-army variety but concentrates on making inter-army variety better (and again as far as I can see does a perfectly good job of it). I've seen no evidence that list variety is better in non-comp, indeed it would negate the point of comp.

logan054
27-01-2014, 16:01
The exact opposite of my experience. Generic comp like that stops Wood Elves having two Eagles (hurting an already weak army) while not affecting the worst Warrior of Chaos builds. I like minimal comp but it needs to be army specific to be effective.

losing a eagle is the least of the problems with the WE book, they need a new book.