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Thread: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

  1. #1
    Chapter Master Darwin_green's Avatar
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    what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    I haven't played warmachine in a long time, and i'm really interested in the themed lists.

    I thinking they're there to give a newer/rusty player an idea where to start with a particular warcaster in terms of what units and jacks work well for them.

    Or, are they mostly for grognards who love the fluff and don't want to be handicapped by doing themed lists, like a stormblade heavy striker list?
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    Commander ICLRK625's Avatar
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    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    Some work, some don't, that's really all there is to say from a competitive view. For example, Dr. Arkadius' themed list is literally impossible not to do right now unless you take one of 3 solos that are terrible with him, and it makes him significantly better, so he will always have 7 point Warhogs. On the other hand, there's plenty of tier lists that make absolutely no sense, and would almost never be used, I'll let the Retribution players fill you in on that though.

    There's also plenty of tier lists (most of them are in newer books from my experiences) that are actually fairly balanced. Lord Carver's, for instance, takes away some pretty big bonuses for Thornfall, but gives you some pretty cool ones too, and from my experience he works both ways, which is how a tier list should be I think.

  3. #3

    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    Mortenbra's Tier List in Cryx is quite nearly perfect. Everything you want is in there pretty much.

    Retribution's on the other hand....Well there are 2 that make sense, but are imo, situation specific. Ravyn's Tier list is ok as you get a second Strike Force Commander allowing for some interesting assassination runs but overall, it isn't fantastic.

    I have heard good things about Rahns tier list, but that is mainly because everything you might want to take with him, is already in there. The bonus's are just pluses and not something you usually plan for.

    So as ICLRK was saying, depends on the tier list, but overall, don't use them if your trying to win most of your games.
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  4. #4
    Chapter Master Darwin_green's Avatar
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    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    ah, there's so many units out there in the forces books that it's a little overwhelming.

    I think I'll try to stick with the stuff in prime in the beginning.
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  5. #5
    Veteran Sergeant Ludwig von Rictoven's Avatar
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    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    Personally I really like them. I have a pMagnus, Arkadius and Carver T4 lists. People have already mentioned about some of the tiers being rubbish and I agree quite a few are but when I look at doing a caster I look at his tier as well and if I like it I do it....probably because I have set myself the challenge of only using tier lists.

    Plus in No Quarter they are starting to print more. I know Zerkova and Caine got new ones an issue ago but I havent read the new issue so I can't comment.

    Best way is just get what you like the look of. Simple

    I just need to know now what the new merc casters tier is......
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  6. #6

    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    Quote Originally Posted by Darwin_green View Post
    ah, there's so many units out there in the forces books that it's a little overwhelming.

    I think I'll try to stick with the stuff in prime in the beginning.
    What faction are you looking at playing? That can help a lot to know what to get.

    For example, if someone said they wanted to play Ret, I would say get Kaelyssa and 2 Heavy Warjack kits. It is very hard to go wrong with that start as all 3 heavies (if magnetized, which I highly recommend doing), have their uses. From there you expand.

    You could do this for each faction and a lot of the stuff you might want to use, might be in the force books. The Force books just act as a good reference for everything in a faction (up to that point).
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  7. #7
    Chapter Master Darwin_green's Avatar
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    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    well, let's organize this in a few ways.

    stuff I have
    Legion of everblight- the battlebox, unit of archers with UA, striders, 2 seraph, and a shepard.

    Cygnar, battlebox- defender,sentinel, extra lancer. unit of Trenchers, long-gunners, Journyman, and Haley, and Siege.

    Highborne- Ashlynn, Vanguard, Mule, Talon, Nyss hunters, Rhupert, Bokur, Eiryss and gunmages.

    Stuff I really want:
    Blindwater congregation
    Baldur the stone cleaver Circle force
    Kreoss Expemplar force. not to excited by his tier list.
    4 star syndicate- Magnus and Drake Mcbain looks like they work well with similar forces.

    Stuff I kind of want
    Trollkin, a madrack brick sounds fun.
    Circle- I did buy the Battle force and i kind of like Kaya.
    Cryx- pSkarre or something with a lot of bane knights.
    Thornfall alliance- Piggies!
    Skorne- if they get giant war-dinosaurs like they had in the RPG. (think AT-AT sized)
    Tyger Tyger. burning bright,
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  8. #8
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    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    Trollkin wise I wouldn't advise going with Madrack Tiers. Particularly the one that gives you another Cavalry unit.

    The tiers on the whole are fun and some are better than others, but on the whole I approach them as just another way to play and set up. If I like the setup of the tier then I'll use it. If not then I won't. The new tiers in No Quarter are fun. Definitely building a list based on the new Vyros one and the new Zerkova one.

  9. #9
    Chapter Master Darwin_green's Avatar
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    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    yeah,I really like pLylith, but her tier list is kind of weird and scary, since I think hiding shepards in units really gets around here small control zone and allows me to use the shredders more like guided missiles. Though I might pick up a Raek since they simplified it. stealth and bounding leap sounds like a good way to keep my opponent nervous.

    2 archer units sounds tricky, and i think just 1 unit of Archers with UA and a unit of striders will carry me through most games.

    I like the Haley Tier 2 list, a free UA and a discount on long gunners is appealing.
    Strikers tier lists depend too much on mechanics-which i traded to a friend- and doesn't offer too much to my playstyle.

    tier 1 siege sounds fun, but the loss of Reinholt does hurt, and I really, really need to pick up that model.

    My buddy who plays will love the Vlad tier lists since he loves berserkers and their discount and Drago(who he hasn't picked up YET).
    Tyger Tyger. burning bright,
    In the forests of the night:
    What immortal hand or eye,
    Could frame thy fearful symmetry?

  10. #10
    Chapter Master basher's Avatar
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    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    some are good some are bad and some are the wrong way round i'm looking at you kruger
    but some are just made for the fun off it 6 points for driuds and a free ua fun fun fun fun
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  11. #11

    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    In my mind there are three types of tier lists

    1. Caster will not touch it at all - these are the ones like caine's which makes him take 2 lancers. They don't give enough incentives to make the tiers worthwile so no caster takes them. They are in the book but for all intents and purposes they might as well not exist.

    2. Caster will take it all the time - These are the ones like montenebra's which reward her for taking her usual army list. These get taken all the time so the caster may just as well have been given the extra rules. Sadly they aren't balanced for them since the argument is the tier benefits are offset by the restrictions, i.e the downside is that you can't take units you wouldn't take anyway.

    3. Allows the caster to use a different build than he would normally take and still be competetive. A perfect example of this is zaal. His tier build and normal build are both viable. IIRC the tier locks out molik but gives you enough benefits to make the trade worthwhile.

    Sadly PP did not do a good job on the tiers so most are of the one and two varieties. I hoped to see more of the third class.
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  12. #12
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    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    In addition to what Uona said, some tier list requirements can be met at very low points while some others require bigger encounters. This is a bit unbalanced.

    Some tier lists also force you to double up some units, which restricts your choices heavily. Sadly, the rewards aren't always worth it (pMadrak's tier list for example).

    Tier lists are supposed to be fluff but they sometimes just seem to be designed to make you buy second-class units (I'm a Circle player but I don't want to play Reeves and I'm not fond of Ravagers). This is even worse when you have to double up those units to get the tier benefits.

    Finally, some solos/units are only included inside one or two casters' tier list requirements, which I think is a pity. A Trollblood player wanting to play tier lists cannot field Janyssa with anyone but pHoarluk.

    It's a pity that such a good idea as tier lists has been IMO botched by PP but it's a small flaw in an otherwise close-to-perfect game.

  13. #13
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    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    The Tier lists are fluffy hence why they restrict you.

  14. #14
    Chapter Master TheSanityAssassin's Avatar
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    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    Speaking of Retribution Tiers, I find the NQ Vyros Tier to be about perfect. In fact, it basically bought me 2 free Arcanists and an advanced move for a 'jack for taking what I would anyway....

    His Tier in the actual army book however.....
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  15. #15

    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    I find they occasionally provide a few more options and sometimes a different way to approach list design. A lot of them however, are poor to terrible because of the often excessive restrictions and/or requirements for the different tier levels. I think the main divide between whether a caster/warlock will have a good tier list is whether they are a support caster or do the job themselves.

    The two Caines are an excellent example of one where it provides an interesting and different style of army and one where even considering the tier takes effort.

    pCaine can support his army well and his tiers although extremely restrictive allow him to create a force that does one particular job (shooting the enemy to pieces) very well. What is available to him contains mostly things he would choose anyway.

    eCaine on the other hand prefers to do the job himself and despite a similarly restrictive choice of units, solos and jacks does not have any reason to consider them because a large number of extremely beneficial choices are taken away without appreciable replacement. He probably would take some of the choices given in the tier list but certainly not others (2 lancers?!) and without his favourite companions (squire and reinholdt) or in fact any heavy hitters there's little reason to consider his tier even for fun.

  16. #16
    Chapter Master paddyalexander's Avatar
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    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    I am interested by the fact that everyone here seems to be calling the Theme forces teirs, focusing on the rules for them instead of what they are & what they are intended to be, a small reward for playing a force themed to the story or style of your Warcaster/Warlock. These were never intended to be uber competitive game breakers. It was never going to be a case of seeing nothing but theme lists being played in tournaments.

    Before the theme lists existed there where many people, myself included, who would run themed armies just because some aspect of the story or the style of the miniture/model/unit fired the imagination. All stormknight, exemplar, man o' war or undead pirate armies were common sights in mk1. People take themed armies/gangs/troupes in almost every games system, even when there isn't a reward system in place by doing so. Often players who want to run such a fluffy/themed list will be punishing themselves by restricting what they can take.

    The way I see it the Themed force section isn't perfect or even balanced. But having any sort of reward system in place is better than simply being punnished for running a theme.
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  17. #17

    Re: what are your thoughts on the themed tier lists?

    Quote Originally Posted by paddyalexander View Post
    I am interested by the fact that everyone here seems to be calling the Theme forces teirs, focusing on the rules for them instead of what they are & what they are intended to be, a small reward for playing a force themed to the story or style of your Warcaster/Warlock. These were never intended to be uber competitive game breakers. It was never going to be a case of seeing nothing but theme lists being played in tournaments.

    Before the theme lists existed there where many people, myself included, who would run themed armies just because some aspect of the story or the style of the miniture/model/unit fired the imagination. All stormknight, exemplar, man o' war or undead pirate armies were common sights in mk1. People take themed armies/gangs/troupes in almost every games system, even when there isn't a reward system in place by doing so. Often players who want to run such a fluffy/themed list will be punishing themselves by restricting what they can take.

    The way I see it the Themed force section isn't perfect or even balanced. But having any sort of reward system in place is better than simply being punnished for running a theme.
    The problem is that some of them are uber competetive tiers. Look at Montenebra. There really is no reason for her to take her regular army anymore as her tier rewards her for taking those very same models. She wasn't balanced with those benefis in mind. Warmachine is always touted as a competetive game whose balance is one of its strong selling point. ANything that diminishes that is bad.

    I would have had no problem with tiers if they were only made for casual play and banned from tourneys. They could have made it as unbalanced or not as they wanted if that was so.
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    Basically it was like hearing a drug dealer mock his customers.
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