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empireguard
06-08-2007, 02:54
I’ve been reading a lot of treads recently (in a lot of different forums) about how this is too good, this is too expensive, that’s too cheap, this unit is crap…

Now I use to think like this about a few things but I’m coming to the conclusion that perhaps it just the General that is Broken. Perhaps it’s just that people have been creamed by good tactics or that they themselves have been using units in a battle field role they are not suited for. Is it just me who thinks most things are fine and that it’s not the unit that’s the problem it’s that your opponent is just using it in the right way or that your not reacting to it in the right way.

Now off course I’m only referring to balanced list, not things like “Gunlines” and other cheesy lists, which is more of a case of only using units with a particular type of tactical advantage.

Now I know something’s seem to put units in roles that don’t fit in with fluff, which seems odd but that’s a different argument altogether

PS sorry if this is in the wrong section.

EDIT:Oh and please I’m aware this could turn into an abusive thread so please keep it civil

Gabacho Mk.II
06-08-2007, 06:31
Great thread topic.

If this thread keeps on track, I will certainly post a cohesive, well formulated argument tomorrow, as I am ready to go to bed right now.


Lets see what happens... :)

empireguard
06-08-2007, 06:52
Great thread topic.
If this thread keeps on track, I will certainly post a cohesive, well formulated argument tomorrow, as I am ready to go to bed right now.
Lets see what happens... :)

I look forward to you on-topic response LOL

Actually I thought I might add after re-reading my first post, it might seem like I’m saying if you think set unit is too good, too cheap … that your a bad general. I do not mean this too be the case.

dodicula
06-08-2007, 08:09
Yes there is such a thing as broken, and the truth is that it is not this or that unit unit, its a couple of units that keep cropping up over and over:
Brett Knights, Treemen, Skinks seem to be pretty popular.

Now if there are no bad units not bad generals, how come all the "Bad generals" comsistently complain about the same things?

Voltaire
06-08-2007, 08:36
The matters of the game which are broken are those which people have trouble defeating. The argument for something being broken always involved the words (not necessarily in order) "Can Not Defeat". People are inable to function when they see somethign which is easy to control but difficult to defeat. The skinks and Bretonnians are prime examples of this as both are exceptional at what they do. This does not make them unbeatable but it means that they come under scrutiny more often than everything else.

The problem with counter balance with these units is that you would be removing some fundamental character from them by reducing them in power. How would a Bretonnian react if he couldn't have a glorious cavalry charge, or a Wood Elf player suddenly find himself inable to shoot? It would be disasterous and mark the death of Warhammer if such things changed.

In my humble opinion, if people want a game of perfect balance between sides they should try playing Chess. Balance and counter-balance is tactics, thats what makes Warhammer what it is.

Gazak Blacktoof
06-08-2007, 09:15
In my humble opinion, if people want a game of perfect balance between sides they should try playing Chess. Balance and counter-balance is tactics, thats what makes Warhammer what it is.

I less humbly disagree. Balance and counter balance is supposed to be provided for by the points system. It says so in each and every army book.

Perfect balance is unobtainable is such a massive system but it could be a lot better than it is.

Tactics should determine which of the armies come out on top. Provided people haven't been silly with their army composition any army should be able to stand a good chance of beating any other army. Strategy should determine the winner not the name on the cover of your army book. Fighting an army of knights shouldn't be an up-hill struggle just because that's the theme of the army.

I've seen a lot of posts state that "its in the army book so it must be fair", how is this logical?

If the studio produced an army book tomorrow and to all intents and purposes it was the empire army book but everything was half the cost, it clearly wouldn't be balanced. I'm sure though that some of the gamers on this forum would say "its in the army book so it must be fair".

And they would be so very, very wrong.

dodicula
06-08-2007, 09:39
"The matters of the game which are broken are those which people have trouble defeating. The argument for something being broken always involved the words (not necessarily in order) "Can Not Defeat". People are inable to function when they see somethign which is easy to control but difficult to defeat. The skinks and Bretonnians are prime examples of this as both are exceptional at what they do. This does not make them unbeatable but it means that they come under scrutiny more often than everything else."

And yet, whats more likely: that people who play skinks and all knight bret armies are all brilliant, or that they truly are more powerful than their points. If they are highly specialized and their strengths are compensated for by their weaknesses, surely we would have reams and reams of strategies for countering brettonians, and yet I have seen none that would actually work in a game (at least for an infantry army facing a 7 lance bret army).
I think in your "witty" response all you really did was inadvertently define broken, a unit that has exceptional strengths which are not compensated for by its weaknesses (much more true for knights and skinks)

Huw_Dawson
06-08-2007, 09:59
The best thing to do when your struggling to defeat something is to sit down with all those old "How to lose at Warhammer" articles and such from WD, read them and post a topic on here asking how one could beat a unit.

For example, weapons that don't require a roll to hit are something you should take at least one of to combat skirmishers. High strength weaponry and handguns should be used at least once in an army to take out heavily armoured knights (Heck, brettonian knights only have a 2+ armour save, it's not like their undefeatable.) or, failing that, tarpit units near fast units that can countercharge.

Of course, it's easier said than done. This scenario is the same as in 40k - a unit is only broken if you lack the models to take them out with.

- Huw

PS: Dwarf quarrelers with great weapons are also awsome against knights. The poor gits think they're going to mow down a missile unit, and instead they get a stand and shoot reaction and then enmasse strength 5 attacks versus a unit that has conglomerated into three ranks... (A magic four rather than a magic five, but meh)

lanrak
06-08-2007, 10:11
Hi all.
While points values are applied subjectively , they are subject to change over time!

Now the armies in WH have a modecum of internal ballance.
But the ballance across units of different races is totaly out of whack!

And as WH is primarily a game about 'UNIT' interaction.
Costing individual MODELS ,then balancing at the ARMY level is not going to get the best results is it?

This is why elite units are 'over costed' when deployed in multiple ranks.
As the second and subsequent ranks do NOT usualy fight ,they are not as cost effective as cheaper base cost troops.(Elite units pay far more for rank bounus, than cheaper troops.)

Apparently the GW devs start with an educated guess as a starting point for model cost.
They then factor in 'fluffy ' points breaks, and army dispensations.(High elves are more expensive as they get access to cheaper magic items!:wtf:)
Then they play some games and rate how effective the new list is vs all armies and the average out points cost!!!:wtf:

So f a unit is 'worth' 300 pts vs army A.
And only 'worth' 100 points vs army B.

It gets a PV of 200.:cries:

Now for just for fun/ narrative games then the current PV is ok.
As PV are not realy required for this type of game!:D

If you are going to the trouble of allocateing points values,why not actualy try to work out the basic factors involved?

Actual combat worth.(PV)
This is a comparative value based on comparative effectivness in game.(Stats, equipment, special abilites,method of deployment,etc. )

Tactical worth.(Army Composition.)
How rare/common the unit will be in the army.
This should be controled by limiting certian types of unit in Special or Rare sections.(And or making them 0-1 etc.)
The PV of a unit SHOULD NOT change if it is deployed in another army.
(Ref DOW as GWs own argument agianst varing PV across army lists.)

Now WH has been under development by GW for nearly 30 years.
And they have streamlined the rules and made them more model centric.

But interms of game ballance and game play issues ,they appear to have made little, if any real progress.IMO.


TTFN
lanrak.

alenui
06-08-2007, 10:50
I agree that there is very little that is broken and most advantages given by certain armies/units are small enough to make little difference compared to generalship. There are composition issues where one list (not race) may find it incredibly difficult against another list (not race) but this is fair enough if you don't have the troops to do the job, that's your fault not GW's.


Yes there is such a thing as broken, and the truth is that it is not this or that unit unit, its a couple of units that keep cropping up over and over:
Brett Knights, Treemen, Skinks seem to be pretty popular.

Treemen one on one with a ranked unit of similar or less points the treeman loses.

Skinks? really?


If they are highly specialized and their strengths are compensated for by their weaknesses, surely we would have reams and reams of strategies for countering brettonians, and yet I have seen none that would actually work in a game (at least for an infantry army facing a 7 lance bret army).

The only two army books which are all infantry are Skaven and Dwarves as far as i'm aware i'd take the infantry in these match ups. I just massacred a RAF army with my Dwarf infantry army. There may not be really easy to convey tactics to take out Bret armies (and I agree they are an easy army to use for inexperienced players) but that doesnt mean tactics won't win the day. I'm unaware of many tactics that are spread around forums to deal with many things.

daemonkin
06-08-2007, 11:11
Usually by the time the last book in an edition is released the amount of perceived 'codex creep' means that it will totally blow away the first book released in the edition (typically empire)

Whether this is down to gamers having longer to study and find tactics to defeat said early armies can be argued but having been around since 3rd ed. I can say for certain that later books in an edition are generally more powerful or have some funkier rules than early army books.

D.

EvC
06-08-2007, 11:18
Bizarre thread, truly bizarre. "Is everything broken? I'm only referring to balanced lists".

Well then, in answer to the question, there is nothing broken in a nice, balanced list.

Gralph!?!
06-08-2007, 13:21
well the thing is, it is not the case of things being broken but a case of whether you are able to use tactics to take out your opponant or if your opponant takes units that can be abusive towards army making. such as a dwarf gunline, lots of cannons and bolt throwers then dwarf thunderers with hand weapons, shields, luight armour and there hand gunbs. this is what i ssee as a broken list, not because it is hard to beat but because everything is good at something. so thunderers can shoot as well as an elf, can kill mmost things with there well aimed shots, then you have to kill them, to do this you are required to make combat surviving a lot of firepower coming towards them. in order to make sure you kill a single unit of thunderers, you need to use 2 heavy hitter infantry units to deal with them, if they have 20 in a unit they can suddenly rank up and become a solid infantry unit. thats what i see as broken. how to fixthis? get rid of their options to have shields but give them heavy armour. still a good save from shooting but crap in combat against most things.

yes things are boken in an army but anyone who says that "this army is broken,. it beat me" is either just to plain dull witted to use the proper tactics to fight them or just doesn't have the appropriate maturity to be playing this game.

bdickj
06-08-2007, 14:33
I agree that most things aren't broken... I think some important things are high powered, and low powered.

Take for instance the Stank. An opponent needs to exhert far more than 300Pts in your average "balanced" army to destroy or severely hamper it. (With the exception of cannons, that is)

The Stank is one of a hundred war machines. And it's probably the only one that can consistently earn it's VP's back, either by forcing your opponent to deal with it, or by simply crushing his army.

Played by a skilled player, a Stank is unbearable.

So yes, some things in the game could use a slight overhaul to make it a little more even... But then again, I am crazy.

GranFarfar
06-08-2007, 14:53
To keep it simple, I would say that when alot of people(independent of each other) find a unit to over-achive alot of the time then it is broken.

Examples on Warseer(not saying that I agree or disagree) - dryads, skinks, bret knights, treeman... I am sure there are a few more.

Not everything is down to good tactics.

Ganymede
06-08-2007, 15:18
It is an objective fact that some units are worth more, point for point, than other units. All tactics aside (or lack thereof), some units are just plain better than others.

What exactly is someone trying to prove by taking only the best units? It is like beating tiger woods in a round of golf, but only because you have a 20 handicap.

Finnigan2004
06-08-2007, 15:33
First off, I couldn't beat Tiger Woods with a 100 handicap. This standard probably holds if I play the best warhammer players, so yes any army can be beaten. Second, I don't really think that warhammer is broken, but there are some things in it that are too good or not good enough. I think that to an extent this is inevitable, but some of it can be corrected which is why people debate it here on Warseer (well, why some debate it).

Some of the points values are very tough to balance under the current rules set, however, because model costs can not be figured out in every situation. The major problem is the potential synergistic effect of some units. Brettonian knights are o.k. in a balanced army with some squires, some peasants, some trebuchets, etc.. Brettonian knights are, however, a good deal because they are what Brettonians do. This becomes a problem when people exploit the undercostedness (not sure if that's a real word) of the knights and takes nothing but knights and pegasus knights. Likewise, dwarf artillery is very good-- no problem in a balanced army, but when you face nothing but thunderers and cannons...:(.

The nature of warhammer means that there will always be the potential to abuse synergistic effects of certain units, so it will always be necessary to take into account that the game is a cooperative enterprise. What this means is that as long as you play with friends and don't behave like a git, it's a great hobby. You do have some responsibility though to ensure that the game is fun for all involved because some lists and armies can be abused.

Gazak Blacktoof
06-08-2007, 15:59
The army books use a system of points values and unit restrictions if these were better there would be less of a problem.

Mainstay rules with opt outs for this, that and the other could solve a lot of problems.

Ranked Infantry should form the core of any "normal" army, any army that is an exception to this generalisation should pay for it because of the synergy Finnigan describes.

If you want an army of knights then your general needs to be a horse lord with access to hundreds of steeds, this is rare and you pay for it.

If you want an army of crazy ranged death then you need a suitably mad engineer or eccentric philanthropist to lead them, again you should pay a premium.

Players should be able to play any army they want, that is the goal, this is "the game of fantasy battles" after all. An army of fire-breathing dragons has certain advantages though and in order to allow anybody a fair stab at its soft underbelly restrictions need to be placed on the number of winged beasties you get to unleash.

Finnigan2004
06-08-2007, 16:21
I like Gazak's solution far more than what I see happening in 40k. I think that the proof of the efficacy of this solution is in the Ogre Kingdoms book. All yu Ogre Kingdoms haters, just hear me out. I think that this book has some restrictions on units make it virtually impossible to powergame with. Of course, there are problems with the ogre book, but it does seem to be hard to make silly lists with. Unfortunately, the practice of restricting units seems to be something GW is getting rid of in fantasy-- I hope that they do not do what I think they are doing in 40k.

In 40k, it seems to me that GW is stripping down army lists to make them easier to balance. I'm far more a fantasy fan and player than 40k (40k players feel free to correct me, if I'm mispercieving things here), but the trend disturbs me, if I am actually correct. This change seems to be driven by tournament style players who want perfect balance. Personally, I'll always sacrifice some balance for flavour. Of course, there are lots of other people out there who would rather have better balance... poor misguided souls ;).

Mythrider
06-08-2007, 20:50
Finnigan, you are correct in your assessment of the direction 40K is taking.

This is all just my opinion but the Codex books are being streamlined in order to allow for more balanced tournament style play. In order to offset this and allow gamers a greater degree of flexibility supplements are being created (ie. Cities of Death and the forthcoming Apocalypse) As a mostly tournament player I don`t have an issue with this.

To the original topic, as others have said Warhammer as a game is not broken but certain units and/or combinations of units are not priced properly for their abilities/effectiveness.

The fact that a list is abusable (ie. Bret all-knight armies or Dwarf gunlines as examples) is the fault of the game designers.

While I agree that as players we must realize that certain lists are open to abuse and should, to a degree, police ourselves; the fact remains that these lists are produced by a team of game designers and are the ultimate product of poor design/playtesting. Just because a list is possible doesn`t make it fair, this is true but such a list is still legal.

These extreme lists should be playtested, as they are allowed by the rules, and I don`t feel that this happens. The main issue I see when it comes to these lists is redundancy for want of a better term. A single unit of Thunderers is probably priced properly however, as we all know, as the number of Thunderer units goes up so does their effectiveness without any increase in cost.

My proposed solution would be a gradual increase in the cost of duplicate units. For example, your first units of Thunderers would cost x point per model (PPM), your second unit would also cost x PPM, however your third would cost x+1 PPM and your fourth unit x+2 PPM.

I admit this is not the perfect solution (who knows, maybe with enough testing it is) but I feel that such a system would reduce the abusability of certain lists while at the same time not maintaining the degree of choice a player has in choosing there army ie. your are still welcome to run a list with 4-5 units of Thunderers but it will be costed differently than a list with 2 units of Thunderers, 2 units of Warriors and a unit of Slayers.

I have posted before that my ideal vision for Warhammer is that any 2 players can show up at any given table, with any terrain set-up and, at an equal points level, both have the same chance of winning (bad dice aside). I believe this is what we would all call balance.

While I acknowledge that such a balance is probably impossible to achieve I do feel that GW can do better than they currently are.

W0lf
06-08-2007, 21:06
unless the designers are 100% perfect at costing units then yes things are broken.

If unit A is effective against B + C + D
And unit B is effective against C
and C is effective against unit D + A

Then unit A is clearly broken..

This can be seen through every army list.

However i think GW do a brilliant job of balancing their games considering the millions of variables.

Mad Doc Grotsnik
06-08-2007, 21:53
Nothing is broken in Warhammer.

However, some lists present a tedious uphil struggle in their attempt to avoid the real deciding factor, Combat!

Omegakai
06-08-2007, 22:06
And what gives you the idea that when they make any give army, they even consider balance?
perhaps they design stuff to be over powering. thus representing their actual statue with in the warhammer universe, i feel debating the logical stand point of balance in world based on elves, magic and dragons is silly. its a game, and just like life various things are unfair.

W0lf
06-08-2007, 22:18
'And what gives you the idea that when they make any give army, they even consider balance?'

Because if the army is weaker then the average, no one will buy it???

Because the majority of players would play the most powerful army leaving many bored of playing mirror games or losing and thus quit buying models.

Mad Doc Grotsnik
06-08-2007, 22:46
There are no all powerful armies out there.

There is no army either list, or configuration, which is unbeatable.

There are however, armies who have a knack for exploting certain other armies achilles heel.

Take Empire V Undead. On paper, Undead have the upper hand, due to massive amounts of Fear tests. Empire, however, have cheap troops. And Longrifles. Longrifles which can be used to nobble the General, thus forcing lots of crumble tests. This in itself does not mean Empire, or even Longrifle, are broken.

Omegakai
07-08-2007, 00:12
'And what gives you the idea that when they make any give army, they even consider balance?'

Because if the army is weaker then the average, no one will buy it???

Because the majority of players would play the most powerful army leaving many bored of playing mirror games or losing and thus quit buying models.

You sir are assuming that they are selling a game. it is of my opinion that Games workshop sells a hobby, that just so happens to be playable as a game.
hence why most people play armies they like, rather then "what is most powerful"
not many players I've ever come in contact with play XYZ race because of its power gaming potential, but generally speaking because of the look of the models, flavor , or lore of the army.
they generate income from constant renewal of army books, and editions, further more it is my opinion also that they are attempting to make the game some what cheaper to collect, that way when they release ORsm flavor army of the month every one will collect it.
my 2Cents

Tarliyn
07-08-2007, 00:28
People really think Skinks are overpowered?

Can anyone link me to a thread that discusses this or send me a message explaining. Cause I don't see. Are they worth there points sure, but overpowered...I don't see it?

The get eaten alive if anything but other skinks charge them, lol, and there limited range almost makes it easy to get charges on them.

hiredgoonthug
07-08-2007, 00:44
Well, I REALLY think the SOC lists are unbalanced. Since they came out they were OTT and should only be allowed in SOC games against other SOC lists.

That Slayer army... BROOTAL! I think it's one of the most broken armies ever.

empireguard
07-08-2007, 00:59
Take Empire V Undead. On paper, Undead have the upper hand, due to massive amounts of Fear tests. Empire, however, have cheap troops. And Longrifles. Longrifles which can be used to nobble the General, thus forcing lots of crumble tests. This in itself does not mean Empire, or even Longrifle, are broken.

Exactly, a smart general will hide his Lord/Hero behind a unit or a building, as he will know the long rifle needs line of sight. This will effectively allow the small number of points spent on long rifles to some what nullify an expensive Lord/general. However that will allow the relatively inexpensive fear-casing units to run havoc on the empire troops. However as the VC Lord/Hero is sort of out of the game (at least for combat purposes) the empire general will have more resources to deal with them.

See this I what I’m talking about I as a VC general might think long rifles are a “cheesy, under pointed, broken” option, well my opponent might think that my fear causing cheap units are “cheesy, under pointed, broken” units. However in the end the game is still balanced.

There are lots of examples like this where by changing you tactics instead of trying the same thing over and over again and it not working. Then saying “that unit/option is broken”

Crazy Harborc
07-08-2007, 01:11
Say hey....what about the brains that use those rules, armybooks and create the rosters? IMHO, any army that is well used has a decent chance of winning.

Having said that......I have felt that oh, this or that was unbalanced, too much cheese, too many power dice and yes, too many shooters. Funy none of that matters when I win.:D

EvC
07-08-2007, 09:58
The key is simply what is fun and what isn't. If something increases your ability to win whilst being no fun at all to play against, then that it what I would call broken. Thus, I like Treemen, they're fun, interesting monsters. And they have a weakness in that they will lose combat and take break tests if fighting entire regiments of infantry. However, when a Wood Elf player takes two of these beasties and adds a BSB to mitigate their main weakness, then instead of the game being, "Ooh, I wanna take down your Treeman, what can I use to do this?!", it becomes, "Right. I can't get to the BSB so the Treemen can't be defeated. I need to spend the entire game avoiding them". Similarly with Anvils of Doom: I get some fun from trying to get my army across the battlefield, but when I try and hide weakened units from it, and they can be targetted anyway, and when Dwarf troops refuse to die in combat and are invariably immune to everything, then what's the point of playing the game in the first place? A Hochland Long Rifle is cool, but four of them in one army taking out one Wizard a turn (Synchornised shooting eh?) is just annoying. And I don't like my games to be annoying.

Gazak Blacktoof
07-08-2007, 11:10
Exactly what Finnigan and I were saying.

Most of the time the points wont be far off the mark when people can include only one of something in the list, getting several of them however creates a synergy that sometimes makes the list difficult to deal with.

As experienced Warhammer players we can all tell once we've deployed our armies how some parts of the battle are going to play out, we wouldn't make very good generals if we couldn't see the tides of battle before they drowned us. Our predicitions aren't always spot on becuase the dice are fickle but sometimes its evident that one side or another is going to be fighting up-hill.

Most players don't mind a challenge but sometimes it feels like you're playing against the list instead of the player, this is when the game gets tiresome and boring.

Currently I might build the odd list that is loaded with one unit type or another to mix things up but generally a balanced approach is more fun for all concerned. I can tell when my opponenet isn't having much fun and being a sensitive sort I feel that we've both wasted a couple of hours if the game isn't fun for both players.



Games are won and lost based on generalship, dice and lists and I know which kind of win I find most satisfying. Lists should fit a theme or favoured style of play not reduce the need for skill or force your opponent to rely on luck to even the field of play.

Atzcapotzalco
07-08-2007, 12:42
A couple of points I've found by reading posts about "broken" units-
Generally, the accuser often either overlooks a units weaknesses, or else has invented some reason why they are irrelevant or don't matter. For example, the weakness of skinks in combat is often discounted on the grounds that they are never in combat unless I, as the lizardman player, allow it, their short range and accuracy by poison shots which are only exceptionally powerful against a few ideal targets, and their bad leadership by either the cold-blooded rule or the influence of a general. Thus a mediocre and vulnerable unit becomes some sort of untouchable god. Since a lot of the time the reason these weaknesses don't matter involves some form of tactics, this actually clashes with the other common accusation that a broken army doesn't use tactics.
Most commonly this is levelled at gunlines, which simply "set up and shoot". Quite frankly, I've never seen how this involves so much less tactics then "set up and charge at the enemy". If anything, I see a lot of combat armies which rely on one particular unit being unstoppable regardless of tactical mishaps, and limited ability to redeploy means I have to start thinking with my dwarves at deployment far more than my southlands lizardmen who can redeploy fast if they have to. Here, this adds power to the army in question-if I'm not using tactics, any victories are purely down to the armies overwhelming power. The defeats would also be purely due to a weakness in the army, but those are rarely mentioned.;)
Finally, some units are very variable in effect-to use another example I'm familiar with, the lizardman salamanders. Like my skinks, they have weaknesses which are frequently overlooked, but they are also very variable in their effect-one artillery dice gives between 0(so no they aren't "auto-hit" weapons) and 10 hits. Even a brood of three is temperemental-I've done over twenty hits, and also 4, 2 or even once no hits at all. That they can so easily either fail or succeed equally spectacularly means that anyone watching them on a good day could easily believe they are more powerful than they are if the bad ones are also taken into account.

EvC
07-08-2007, 13:32
I don't really agree with the tactics thing, with gunlines you just set up the same way every battle by rote with no thought required. For an army that marches towards the enemy, you do have to consider the shooting, magic and movement that your opponent will use, which will be the same every time. "Which unit shall I annihilate this turn?" is an envious tactical decision to have to make ;) Even with Khorne Chosen Knights you have to play tactically- if some small unit of bait will ruin your plans, you have to take tactical measures to stop it.

A good way of examining something is using the law of averages. On a typical shot 3 Salamanders will shoot out 15 auto-hits, "misfiring" once every two turns. This generally means they'll be able to do 25% damage to almost all units you'll typically face and wipe out the support units. The main problems with such a unit which are of course ignored by the Salamander defenders is the fact they auto-hit, so even if you're skirmishing behind a wall, that's no protection, their Skirmishing nature and potential 360 degree Line of Sight. Plus they're not too bad in combat, unlike other "war machines". If you want to discuss why they're not as strong, or talk about their weaknesses, then it's a good idea to actually list one or more their weaknesses...

empireguard
07-08-2007, 13:55
A couple of points I've found by reading posts about "broken" units-
Generally, the accuser often either overlooks a units weaknesses, or else has invented some reason why they are irrelevant or don't matter. For example, the weakness of skinks in combat is often discounted on the grounds that they are never in combat unless I, as the lizardman player, allow it, their short range and accuracy by poison shots which are only exceptionally powerful against a few ideal targets, and their bad leadership by either the cold-blooded rule or the influence of a general.

Great point I just have to add some more examples

Steam tank (unstoppable monster) sure if it suffers 2-3 wounds the thing starts to blow up all on its own but it has a high toughness and a 1+ armour save there's no way you could wound it (ps if your wondering I never take the tank except in large battles 3000pts plus).

War Altar sure it doesn't do much in combat attacking wise and any S7 hit will auto kill it but it has a 4+ ward I just know he will pass every one. I just know he will hold up my most expensive unit all game with his Huge 7" (not allowed to march) movement.

I've just seen TOO many threads about these two and how there is no way to beat them.

One thing I do think is unfair is if playing a new wargamer who doesn't have the units or experience to beat harder list and people feel the need to smash them time and time again. It stops a lot of new player as they just don't have fun.

Anyway I've vented enough for now LOL

DesertDirge
07-08-2007, 14:01
the players are broken.. not the game. People whine about other armies because they want to win all the time. This game is for fun... who cares if you can't beat a skyre army!!

I say you picked your army you deal with the A$$ Whopin!! ;)

MutantMaggot
07-08-2007, 14:15
Let me ask you a few questions in Return.... if you find yourself answering yes to these, then yes, everything is really broken.

Are all politictions corrupt?
Are all Conservatives Idiots?
Are all liberals Idiots?
Does Everyone hate their job?
Is Every computer a piece of $#!(%?
Are all goblins weedy (Well, this one's actually true)?
Are all cars pieces of junk?

In the end, most stuff is pretty good, people bitch alot more than they ever should. It's just the way of it.

You can't say "are all Tories idiots?", because, alright, some of them are, like with Labour, but that requires defining the entire party. This is the same with all your comments... it asks you to define a group as a whole, which is stupid. Some cars are junk, but not all are, for example. If you replace "all" with "most", though, I agree to all of it. :eek:

Anyway. I agree definately with the final line of your post. People will moan, they will cry, but mainly for no real purpose, because they want them to be better, and really can't accept change or similar. Nothing is "broke", it's just complained about, often unjustly. Sometimes it is just, but if people whine about, say, 2 steam tanks, there are ways to kill them, and it is better than one in a massive 9k army.

If you play with someone who is unsporting, don't whine, just ask yourself "why do I play games with that person?", and if you have a rubbish unit with good models in your army, use house rules, and just don't take them to a tournament.

Overall, GW isn't perfect, though it does as well as most things do, if not far better. With the new edition, anyway, GW is trying to sort this out, but, again, GW isn't perfect, and will never be.

Atzcapotzalco
08-08-2007, 12:02
I don't really agree with the tactics thing, with gunlines you just set up the same way every battle by rote with no thought required. For an army that marches towards the enemy, you do have to consider the shooting, magic and movement that your opponent will use, which will be the same every time. "Which unit shall I annihilate this turn?" is an envious tactical decision to have to make ;)

...And a gunline is no more free to ignore the shooting, magic, or espescially movement of it's adversaries.
If I can freely choose which unit to annihilate every turn, with units which can't move or fire and in the case of my thunderers or crossbows can't even turn and fire, then I've deployed very well, and my opponent is probably somewhat careless in how he advances. There's tactics in deploying to maximise my choice of targets, and minimise the damage units that reach my lines can do, and definitely tactics in advancing on such a gunline without leaving all your units open to annihilation. A defensive style of play is itself a tactical choice. Granted they aren't the same tactics as those of a highly mobile army, but my southlands lizardmen may be the most mobile army there is, and I've heard them similarly accused of not using tactics. I also frequently lose with both of these supposedly unbalanced armies, which should be impossible if they require no tactics at all.


Even with Khorne Chosen Knights you have to play tactically- if some small unit of bait will ruin your plans, you have to take tactical measures to stop it.

Much like a gunline has to take tactical measures to avoid a combat unit getting round my fields of fire and engaging my units in combat.


A good way of examining something is using the law of averages. On a typical shot 3 Salamanders will shoot out 15 auto-hits, "misfiring" once every two turns. This generally means they'll be able to do 25% damage to almost all units you'll typically face and wipe out the support units. The main problems with such a unit which are of course ignored by the Salamander defenders is the fact they auto-hit, so even if you're skirmishing behind a wall, that's no protection, their Skirmishing nature and potential 360 degree Line of Sight. Plus they're not too bad in combat, unlike other "war machines". If you want to discuss why they're not as strong, or talk about their weaknesses, then it's a good idea to actually list one or more their weaknesses...

Actually my point with them was that they are somewhat rarely "average". They can't do 15 hits, and rarely do 14 or 16 either, and often on a good few turns will be a lot more powerful than that average suggests. When a unit varies as easily as they do between devastating and ineffectual, it's easy to remember them at their deadliest and forget their off days. As for their ability to effectively ignore the to-hit modifiers for cover and skirmishing, I don't see how that's such a bad ability for a unit to have, and it's not unique to salamanders-anything with a template ignores cover, and tomb king archers have a fixed to-hit roll. As for weaknesses, yes they have those-a short range, poor toughness and leadership, and a vulnerability in combat-they aren't as defenceless as skinks, but with no ranks or standard aren't difficult to beat either. As it happens, a lot of the same weaknesses discounted in skinks:D. Plus there's the variability I've already mentioned-I can't actually rely on them doing heavy damage, and while I might have planned for the possibility of their failure, that would be tactics. Lastly, devastating as they may be against T3 elves, at only S3 armour piercing they quickly lose effect against tougher opponents.

EvC
08-08-2007, 12:23
...And a gunline is no more free to ignore the shooting, magic, or espescially movement of it's adversaries.

But the point is, you're not going to move units to make countercharges. You're just going to sit back and take whatever he has, but you'll have more shooting, so you'll do better. Plus loads of anti-magic runes. And your own magic that can't be dispelled.


If I can freely choose which unit to annihilate every turn, with units which can't move or fire and in the case of my thunderers or crossbows can't even turn and fire, then I've deployed very well, and my opponent is probably somewhat careless in how he advances.

You know how castle up a gunline, well done. And you probably know to put the Anvil of Doom behind your army, wow. However anyone can put their force out like this, it does not require brilliant tactical thinking, despite what you might think. You don't need to shoot every turn with Crossbowmen or Thunderers for them to be effective. Your opponent is not careless in his advance- he has to advance, and you almost certainly have a hill, leaving no option but to move into your firing line. Bravo! If an enemy is going to reach your lines in strong enough shape to break your units and claim some victory points, the only choice he has is to move several units forward. This is inescapable.


There's tactics in deploying to maximise my choice of targets, and minimise the damage units that reach my lines can do, and definitely tactics in advancing on such a gunline without leaving all your units open to annihilation.

All you have to do is place the unit down pointing at the enemy. Something that a 3 year old could do almost as well as you does not count as tactics.


I also frequently lose with both of these supposedly unbalanced armies, which should be impossible if they require no tactics at all.

That's not a logically sound argument.


Much like a gunline has to take tactical measures to avoid a combat unit getting round my fields of fire and engaging my units in combat.

Can't be done if you have 3+ shooting units.


Actually my point with them was that they are somewhat rarely "average". They can't do 15 hits, and rarely do 14 or 16 either

Oh good god... pssst, if you ever see someone state that the average D6 roll is 3.5, do not step in and tell them that you can only roll 3 or 4, or you'll look like a right idiot. The average roll for 3 Salamaders is 15.


and often on a good few turns will be a lot more powerful than that average suggests.

...You don't actually know what "average" means, do you?


When a unit varies as easily as they do between devastating and ineffectual, it's easy to remember them at their deadliest and forget their off days.

Yes, some days they'll do brilliantly, some days they'll do wonderfully. That does not change what their average performance is, however.


As for their ability to effectively ignore the to-hit modifiers for cover and skirmishing, I don't see how that's such a bad ability for a unit to have, and it's not unique to salamanders-anything with a template ignores cover, and tomb king archers have a fixed to-hit roll.

It's a good ability, a very strong ability. It's what helps make Salamanders a no-brainer choice. Taking a no-brainer choice, again, is not tactical thinking.


As for weaknesses, yes they have those-a short range, poor toughness and leadership, and a vulnerability in combat-they aren't as defenceless as skinks, but with no ranks or standard aren't difficult to beat either.

They're essentially war machines, but are far stronger in combat than 90% of war machines. That's called a "strength".


Lastly, devastating as they may be against T3 elves, at only S3 armour piercing they quickly lose effect against tougher opponents.

I agree with this. Salamanders aren't devestating, and they aren't quite broken. But then I wasn't arguing that they're broken, but I do ask that you look at them objectively. And learn what average means and why it's more relevant than anecdotal evidence.

Atzcapotzalco
09-08-2007, 00:15
But the point is, you're not going to move units to make countercharges. You're just going to sit back and take whatever he has, but you'll have more shooting, so you'll do better. Plus loads of anti-magic runes. And your own magic that can't be dispelled.



You know how castle up a gunline, well done. And you probably know to put the Anvil of Doom behind your army, wow.

Which is a very simplified way of looking at effectively deploying and using a gunline. Equally, I could say that two combat based armies do no more than deploy in a line, charge at each other, and whichever one has more fighting ability wins. Of coarse, it isn't that simple, and neither is "castling up" a gunline-in both case subtle variations from either side can complicate matters.


However anyone can put their force out like this, it does not require brilliant tactical thinking, despite what you might think. You don't need to shoot every turn with Crossbowmen or Thunderers for them to be effective. Your opponent is not careless in his advance- he has to advance, and you almost certainly have a hill, leaving no option but to move into your firing line. Bravo! If an enemy is going to reach your lines in strong enough shape to break your units and claim some victory points, the only choice he has is to move several units forward. This is inescapable.

My opponent has a lot of choices in the specifics of which of his units advances where, and in which if any units he leaves in the open in any given turn. Any turn a unit doesn't shoot is less casualties, and more opponents reaching my lines, therefore there are tactics involved in deploying them to get the most shots possible, against a variety of different possible approaches.





All you have to do is place the unit down pointing at the enemy. Something that a 3 year old could do almost as well as you does not count as tactics.

A three year old could also place a fighting unit down aimed at the enemy and advance in a straight line. In both cases, an entire army is somewhat more complicated to arrange to its full potential.




I also frequently lose with both of these supposedly unbalanced armies, which should be impossible if they require no tactics at all.

That's not a logically sound argument.

It does show it's possible even for an experienced player to make tactical errors with such an army, or for my opponents to devise an effective tactic against them. If the army genuinely involved no tactics at all, I could only lose through bad luck, which isn't always the case.



Can't be done if you have 3+ shooting units.

Actually I'd say it's more difficult to force an opponent to place any given unit in a crossfire between 3 units at once than it is to get decent targets for one unit. True, I can choose to face them all in different directions so I'll always have one firing instead of concentrating them, but this is starting to sound suspisciously like a discussion of possible tactics.




Oh good god... pssst, if you ever see someone state that the average D6 roll is 3.5, do not step in and tell them that you can only roll 3 or 4, or you'll look like a right idiot. The average roll for 3 Salamaders is 15.



...You don't actually know what "average" means, do you?

Yes, I do understand what "average" means, and I also know about standard deviation, which for salamanders is a lot higher than most other warhammer units.




Yes, some days they'll do brilliantly, some days they'll do wonderfully. That does not change what their average performance is, however.

30 shots hitting on 4+ would have the same average, but would much more reliably stay close to that average. By contrast, the salamanders vary a lot to either side, and it's that variability which can exaggerate their power in the eyes of an opponent who suffers badly from their full potential.




It's a good ability, a very strong ability. It's what helps make Salamanders a no-brainer choice. Taking a no-brainer choice, again, is not tactical thinking.

Not so very unbalancing given a lot of my targets are in the open and aren't skirmishers. A lot of other war machines ignore armour, and several are also strong enough to effectively ignore toughness, both of which I'd say comes into effect more often than ignoring the penalty for shooting at skirmishers.



They're essentially war machines, but are far stronger in combat than 90% of war machines. That's called a "strength".


Only by comparison to other war machines, which are even weaker in combat. They aren't quite as weak, but they are weak enough that they will lose most fights they get into without support. Also by comparison to other war machines, they have a range which requires getting close to the enemy, which makes them more likely to get into those fights. But actually, I don't really regard them as warmachines, since the only thing they *do* have in common with war machines is use of the artillery dice.


[/QUOTE]I agree with this. Salamanders aren't devestating, and they aren't quite broken. But then I wasn't arguing that they're broken, but I do ask that you look at them objectively. And learn what average means and why it's more relevant than anecdotal evidence.[/QUOTE]

Objectively, they have a very high destructive potential, but are very unreliable in living up to it, and like pretty much everything else in my southlands lizardman army, are a very fragile unit.