PDA

View Full Version : Whats more important..



Kradle
03-05-2007, 12:35
..To you theme or battlefield effectiveness?

This is just a random question that i thought of since i prefer the theme of an army to the effectiveness of it on the field. Just wondering how you guys go about it.

When starting an army is it more important to you the theme of the potential army the the possibility of a killer list.

For those who choose theme.. why do you think thats more important?
Same question for the effectiveness players out there.

I would love to hear the armies and themes you guys have got out there.

I personally think theme is more important because I enjoy writing and so i often come up with a cool story or fluff for an army beforehand and thus theme the army around the storys or fluff i have come up with. I like having characters with background i can relate to, I like being able to change the story as the army progresses through battles.

So give me your preference, why it is your preference and the armies you have to show that preference (good use of the word 'preference' or what?)

Peace.

marv335
03-05-2007, 12:39
Personally I theme all my armies.
I regularly use a 10th company themed list comprising mainly of scouts.
I also use a mech company list now and again.

Kiro
03-05-2007, 12:41
Theme in form and tactics. I despair whenever I hear of people charging their Tau battlesuits into cc...

Surgency
03-05-2007, 12:47
I've charged my Battlesuits into CC.

Of course, I had to, or suffer a devestating charge by several CC specialists. My gambit paid off, to, as I was able to then decimate two assault squads by gunfire ;)

Groksnag
03-05-2007, 12:48
themed and battle tactics (or lack of)

Crube
03-05-2007, 12:55
I go for theme first, then effectiveness.

FOr me, the game (well all GW games if I'm honest) is mainly about the fluff, background etc, so I find it more entertaining to try and play in kepeing with the background. However, at the end of the day, it is a competitive game, and there'd be no fun if I turned up with my lovingly converted and painted models, all nicely themed to a specific idea, if they got their asses handed to them every game, so there has to be a degree of looking at battle field effectiveness...

Angelwing
03-05-2007, 13:04
Theme first. Although with my larger armies its more a case of "what models shall I use today?"

Wolflord Havoc
03-05-2007, 13:09
Sensibly themed but effective with it. I would not take something 'just to be fluffy' if it was a waste of points (IMO).

For example - I always try to take 2 Grey hunter squads rather than the minimum 1 (granted they are armed to the fangs).

I try to take 2 Platoons of Guardsmen (granted all squads are armed with a Missile Launcher and a Plasma gun) as the core of my IG armies and not take 2 5 man Grenadier squads. I nearly always take Mortars because I think they should (though again I have been constantly surprised by how good they have been) be included in any Guard army.

My next army will be a chaos Regiment based on the IA:5 Siege of Vraks army list - again if I think something looks likely to fit within my pre concieved image of this army then it will be included.

Kradle
03-05-2007, 13:41
Oh I agree you dont want to spend money on something completely useless (unless gaming REALLY isnt your thing in which case.. who cares.)

But I try and stick to a main theme while purchasing. So yes my IG army is themed to hell and back but what the hey.. I have 3 platoons of deep striking imperial guard, three (potentially deep striking) sentinels and a few extra bits and pieces in there. Take my word for it, thats effective against alot in its points range. Thats alot of imperial death before i need to get worried.

Aegius
03-05-2007, 13:42
I always take themed armies now, even in my darker 6 man min/maxing days, all units would come from the same company and have the relevant unit markings. Now I'm starting to theme my armies in a fluffier way, last night for example I took a 1000 pt 9th company list, I was able to represent 20 devastators and only used 1 heavy support choice. (2 5 man tac squads with hvy wpns, 5 man command squad with 2 hvy weapons and 5 man devastator squad with 3 hvy wpns.) All squads but 1 were 5 man squads, I had no power fists, no assault cannons and the only power weapon was held by my captain.

I crushed my opponent who had a cheesy min/max'd marine army that was designed to kill MEQ's.

e033x
03-05-2007, 13:44
i prefer a mix.. a good player should be able to come up with a list that is fluffy and tactically good.

lord_blackfang
03-05-2007, 14:21
Pick a theme, then optimize within those restrictions.

Example:
I'm currently building a Tau force with the following self-imposed restrictions:
-no non-Tau models
-no metal models/bitz
-no Railheads
-no Fireknives

Within these limits, I'll make the best power list possible.

Democratus
03-05-2007, 14:25
I'm playing Death Guard. So it's obvious that I favor theme over brute power. :)

jubilex
03-05-2007, 14:41
I started 40k after reading the background fluff for the new eldar aspects way back in wd. I had played whfb before (at school, in about '86? Good god!) but didn't think much to it. So I suppose you can see the angle I'm coming from. However, my armies are always competitive, but not overly so. I only ever once took a "starcannon army of doom" and regretted it (necron phase out in record time). But over time I have "mellowed" somewhat. My most recent army is...well I won't tell you, you might want to read about it. Oh blimey, yes I will. I offer up a thousand prayers for its very existance, so you probably know who it is now. But, it has become my favourite and is, I believe the weakest on the table. However, I love the theme and when they do well, I'm that much happier for it.

Stenhard
03-05-2007, 15:11
I agree with lord_blackfang, pick a theme and make the best list you can with the theme in mind.

Cirenivel
03-05-2007, 16:54
Pick a theme, then optimize within those restrictions.

Example:
I'm currently building a Tau force with the following self-imposed restrictions:
-no non-Tau models
-no metal models/bitz
-no Railheads
-no Fireknives

Within these limits, I'll make the best power list possible.

That, I think, is the best way to get a competitive and themed army...
And it's of course what i do (with fallen dark angles though:D )

Cirenivel

gitburna
03-05-2007, 17:05
theme first, but there comes a point where you have to start tweaking the effectiveness within the theme.

My latest marine army for instance is undergoing testing and tweaking, its multimelta heavy, no terminators, veterans, lots of tactical squads etc and no lascannons. Ive been testing it in Cityfight environments where after several games i am finally managing to put up a fight [even if im still losing at least i can see the improvements]

I've been looking at trying to port it into a Dark Angels/Blood Angels style force, using the combat squads. So with that in mind i will be buying the new veterans and this should give me enough models alongside the old ones to field effective command squads and legal sergeants, and 2 distinct veteran squads.

Aemos
03-05-2007, 17:29
theme is really important i think, personally, my BT have a disdain for all laser weaponry, but also they choose not to use jump packs, preferring to use foot or rhino to advance. as such, it means that i have very little firepower to bring to bear in the opening stages, as i cant use preds (par of course the destructor, but i don't use one :D ) and means that i have to close with the enemy. come to think of it...its probably why i lose so much...:p

daladzor
03-05-2007, 17:39
i play with theme
due to usually just doing long campaigns with freinds
my army, cahnges as battles progress,
all being the same company,
i prefer having a background to my army, and their usual foe, updating my list after each game, dependant on results from it

ancient_conflict
03-05-2007, 17:52
theme
and also pretty things
like stuff from pretty things. com (forgeworld.com)

Fourth
03-05-2007, 18:16
Theme.
However, given a theme, I too try to make as effective a list as possible given my chosen restrictions (avoiding things that might be seen as unfair, of course).
Example (restrictions chosen for background and balance)--my DIY Chaos chapter, Undiv/Slaanesh--no vehicles, no Daemons, no Siren.
Never used Daemonic Speed or the infamous 6-man las/plas. Not precisely for balance reasons, though (I avoid plasma because I'm awfully fond of rolling 1's, and I like modelling wings, not so much the various forms of Speed; no Lascannons in tac-squads 'cause I prefer to play the moving game)

DigitsDavid
03-05-2007, 18:57
Theme and, fluff and good looks first. Like the SOB/Witchunter listing, I love the models for the Repentia and the penitent engines regardless of their tactical shotfalls.

THEN I try and fight them as I interpret their fluff. If the fluff says I need to field these items, I'll try and learn how best to make them work for me!

Bunnahabhain
03-05-2007, 20:40
My Guard have a dislike of unreliable energy weapons.

The three command squads have a plasma gun each, and a nervous looking Guardsman being told to fire it by an officer standing a safe distance away. Every squad has has a missile and grenade to simplify the supply chain.

I try and make it reasonably competitive, but without being the ubiqitious and boring drop troop plasma/melta guard list of those who must win at all costs...

Kradle
04-05-2007, 05:12
I never thought id find so many people agreeing with me. Everyone i know who plays (or nearly everyone) go for effectiveness first and if it doesnt fit in with the armies fluff then they just call themselves heretics and therefore dont need to adhere to the fluff. Cheap bastards.

Loving the unique armies im hearing about here guys. Congrats to all those who stick to the theme of their armies!

Peace,

Occulto
04-05-2007, 05:22
Theme because I like a challenge and an army that looks good.

Anyone can crunch the statistics.
Anyone with a steady source of income can buy the "best" units/bits.

But it takes a good player to win with a list that's got weaknesses built into it.

Brother xavier
04-05-2007, 05:56
I like my armies being themed. Although one of my armies is BA and I'm not sure how or if I can make it a stronger theme.

A lot of guys at club don't seem to have a theme, just make an army that works, a lot are amatures so it's no big fuss, but there are some with experience who have non-theme powerful armies that are just out to win.

I find themed armies are much more of a joy to play with and against.

starlight
04-05-2007, 06:26
1) Theme
2) Theme
3) Theme

Win or lose, theme is all.

If you can't win with a themed army are you really playing that army or just looking for the best rules?

Stormhammers
04-05-2007, 07:49
theme. It just makes the game more fun. Building an army is one of the central aspects of the hobby, why not have it be your own.

intellectawe
04-05-2007, 07:56
Tactics then theme.

I make a list I can win with, then stick a theme around it.

I've been stuck with armies that I did a theme first, only to loose again again, thus, having me stick the army in my cases never to see the light of day again.

Ianos
04-05-2007, 09:11
Whats more important?

Eldar, because their theme equlals tactics! :D

Arbiter7
04-05-2007, 09:17
Theme first!!

That's why I play the game!!

Enjoy the theme! The win comes second, and is more gratifying when you do it with a THEMED army...

Scythe
04-05-2007, 10:09
I build new armies usually this way:

- select some models in the army I like.
- try to fit the models together (and add some others, if needed) in a coherent force with a main theme.
- try to optimize the latter list for gameplay purposes.

Mind, this process is mostly done before I buy anything, so I usually have several armies on paper, which get disregarded because the end result will not look that nice, or will probably not be effective enough (aside from obvious time and money restrictions ;)). But anyway, theme comes before effectiveness for me, tough in the end I usually end up with armies which have as much as possible of both.

WoW_Auron
04-05-2007, 10:17
But it takes a good player to win with a list that's got weaknesses built into it.

Don't all lists come with a weakness? :p

I would assume that most people at least start out for a theme. How else do we get started? I mean let's face it, when we face starting an army we have to accept the fact that we're going to have to paint the models, so of course we're looking for something we will enjoy paining. Also looking at the quality of the models, to you, in your own view.

Of course this doesn't apply to everyone. A friend of our group used to play Vampire Counts, in large games. He must have painted 4 models in his entire life. My god, the difference of playing a well presented, nicely painted army is absolutely huge. Do you know how drudging it feels to kill 10 Zombies a turn and not even notice, because as he raises them he doesn't even bother to rank them up? Nope, just throws them on the end of the movement tray (yeah, there's another 8 there). Not even painted. Im sure some of you do! /sigh.

From there perhaps it gets a little different. Some (myself included) take this impulse a little further, thus buying models we like, regardless of whether, game-wise, its a sensible way to start.
Others im sure, read into the book to find what a good starting force would be and start from there (2 Troops, 1HQ) maybe play a few games, whatever. Then think about what it is they feel they are lacking, building up from there. Im sure at this stage people are starting to think more competitvely, rather than the fluff. The fluff will mostly be kept to in army selection and painting. (A good example of what im saying would be found in the latest issue of WD, with the explanation of the Harlequin models being kept less cluttered & why). However on the table im sure most people will be looking towards playing with what they have down as effectively as possible.

So, basically in answer to your question. I would kind of have to say both.

Deadnight
04-05-2007, 13:36
it is possible to make a list that is both themed/fluffy and fairly powerful.

my mechtau list. mont'ka strike force. shas'el. fire warriors in devilfish. 2 maxed kroot squads. 3 hammerheads, bunch of crisis suits.

4 vehicles. mantas hold 4. (and before someone says it should be 2 fish and 2 hammerheads, epic rules allow 4 hammerheads....)
auxiliaries are the core of the infantry. as they are.
crisis suits play a big role in it. mont'ka force.

I won't play a game with a hand tied behind my back, unless its against a new guy. That said, while i make powerful army lists, all can be beaten, all are fluffy, and all are themed, converted and bear their own story.

there doesnt have to be a distinction between powerful and themed.

Snapchuck
04-05-2007, 13:48
Ianos is right about Eldar.
A lot of people equate cheese to loading up a list on one kind of unit, but to me that is what theme is all about, so in the past I have struggled to make a themed army not be too cheesy looking. Example: Eldar use rangers and warwalkers to garrison forward outposts, so make a garrison force of rangers/pathfinders for troops and warwalkers for heavy support. if I took 3 choices of each some would call this brie.

To theme nowadays I tend to make backstories for my VERY balanced army lists.

Tymell
04-05-2007, 13:56
Theme first, without a doubt, then effectiveness.

Simply because of what Warhammer is to me, and why it's appealing. It's fun because of the background, the stories, all that good stuff, so naturally that's what I focus on. While the game itself is undoubtably very good, it's not what truly attracts me to it all, and there are plenty of other games out there that are equally fun and well-made in that respect. What makes this one stand out is the background material.

I've no beef with people who want to focus on effectiveness, but it's not for me (I don't do tournaments or store games at all), and really I feel some are missing out on the best aspect of the whole thing :) That said, people are perfectly right that there doesn't have to be one or the other, having both is totally viable. I just kind of pity those who focus totally on battlefield effectiveness and don't care about theme whatsoever. There are such people, unfortunately.

ashc
04-05-2007, 15:31
I personally try to achieve both. Its possible with most armies.

Ash

ehlijen
04-05-2007, 16:05
Do you really expect anyone to answer effectiveness in this thread :p

Anyway, my answer is neither. Fun comes first. That means whacky stuff that isn't necessarily effective, nor in many cases fluffy. Demo charges (aka how often can I blow myself up today), charging broadsides (they're actually half decent in combat!), stuff that makes the biggest bang possible etc. It's about unpredictable stuff.

Sure, I like things to work and will try to use them effectively. And sure, I'd like to find reasons for why the units I have are fighting together, but both take a back seat to fun when it comes to picking units :)

Bjorn Stormwolf
04-05-2007, 16:16
I've just bought a pack of long fangs, maybe the most derided unit in the space wolved list, because i want a bunch of old g*ts standing at the back blasting the crap out of the enemy while constantly whinging about how war was much better in the old days. And the ale got you drunker. And the roast stag tasted better. And the wolves you hunted in the old days were bigger than a Baneblade. OOoooohh my back is killing me lugging round the plasma cannon you know....

Theme please. Play the game, not the rules.

Kradle
05-05-2007, 02:51
Do you really expect anyone to answer effectiveness in this thread
Mmm well actually.. going on my local group i would have thought a fair few people out there were more into effectiveness.. You have proved me wrong and I thank you...

Scythe
05-05-2007, 10:05
Well, warseer might attract those kinds of players which might not represent 'the average gw gamer' that well...

That aside, not many people might have the courage/honesty to go against the stream of 'theme' posts in the tread...:p

fwacho
05-05-2007, 10:25
I want a theme of tactics.

waht I mean is that I choose an darmy for the WAY it plays. Later I'll tweak it a little to make it more competative but all my lists have themse.
examples foudn in my lists

1. pure mobility
2. massed vehicles.
3. everythign with pinning weapons,
4. pure infantry
5. all 3+ or better saves
6. str 6 weaponry.
7. all guardians
8. massed big guns (multiple Dev squads)
9. all deep strikers (BA terms and jetpacks commonly)
10.all move and shoot.
11. gunline
12. horde.

gernally every list I use has some theme to it. In my mind effectiveness is born out of your theme.

of course some themes are just nto meant ofr battle. if a thme is not at least a little competative or fun to use it's out. for example I don't expect my raven wing to to win a lot of battles but they'll be fun as heck to use.

answer_is_42
05-05-2007, 10:26
I do try to theme my armies, but I also want somthing that I can win with. My preatorian army is an example of this. A silly amount of guns (as in any good Guard army), but squads ranked up, front five kneeling, back standing (whole squads under large blast, no partials!). I even somtimes write background....

Coasty
05-05-2007, 10:44
Background is very important! I have pages and pages for my marines... the Ork stuff is a bit simpler.

kane40k
05-05-2007, 10:45
..To you theme or battlefield effectiveness?

This is just a random question that i thought of since i prefer the theme of an army to the effectiveness of it on the field. Just wondering how you guys go about it.

When starting an army is it more important to you the theme of the potential army the the possibility of a killer list.

For those who choose theme.. why do you think thats more important?
Same question for the effectiveness players out there.

I would love to hear the armies and themes you guys have got out there.

I personally think theme is more important because I enjoy writing and so i often come up with a cool story or fluff for an army beforehand and thus theme the army around the storys or fluff i have come up with. I like having characters with background i can relate to, I like being able to change the story as the army progresses through battles.

So give me your preference, why it is your preference and the armies you have to show that preference (good use of the word 'preference' or what?)

Peace.

well i did go for armys that with ultra killy list potential, but now i go for an army that looks cool or has potential to look cool and i can do lots of conversions and i can write storys for my characters. i make my armylists look almost like codexes, jus with out the options bit and stuff. but yer, i like writing too. lol
:skull:

dogsbollocks
05-05-2007, 10:46
Theme is a scoring component into most of the competitions I enter and so to get anywhere you need to have a balance. There's no point in having the most effective games score if all your opponents are going to mark you down for theme.

That said I often first get attracted to armies because I like the background and/or the models and effectiveness is secondary but still important, as anyone would get soon get tired of being beaten all the time.

I'm putting together an ordo xenos inquisitorial army using the lists for the other ordos an made up of storm troopers, a deathwatch squad, inquistors and a couple of marine squads to round it out. I have a sneaking suspicion that the theme is somewhat better than their effectiveness as the first two unit types I mentioned seem to be a bit expensive points wise relative to their effectiveness but I do like the background and models.

EVIL INC
05-05-2007, 12:34
I go for theme with my army and battlesfield effectiveness for the lists used. I treat it as though my "commanders" send the units nessessary for the job from what he has available. But my overall army has a definate theme.