Hello Frontline Gaming Fans! Skari here again from skared.podbean.com with another guest article. This time I will dip into the wonderful world of balance.
Balance within list building and having an encompassing list that will face it all. Reece has been having a lot of fun lately with a jack of all trades Marine list, and this is the theory that will be discussed here today. I shall talk about the main impressions of these sorts of lists from an outsiders perspective. The beauty of their inner workings from a tactical perspective and finally I shall dabble in the Law of 9’s Theory that I have been using to great effect during list building, which I find works well for such -TAC- lists. Here is part 1 of this 2 part series.
You walk up to the first table at a tournament. Its round 3 of 4 and your opponent is running the run of the mill cookie cutter space wolf list that you have read about over and over on the internet. His(or Her) list is full of point cost effective units, multiplied ad infinitum to fill up points. There is little to no freestylin’ in his(or her) list building and you will be able to dictate target priority quite well. Now, this player looks at your army list… puzzled, looking up at you he asks “mandrakes?” (also, flayed ones, blood claws, dark angel scouts fit here as well, etc…). With a smile you reply “yup!” little do they know they are in for a surprise.
A -TAC- list will look sort of ad hoc when displayed, it has a little bit of everything. Each tool in the tool box has a role to fill and when it is called upon to perform they will do so admirably. As an outsider looking into such a list sometimes the choices within the army do not make any apparent sense. The meta, local gaming group or other experience can really shape the way lists look and are used on the table so it is hard to pinpoint the inner workings of them sometimes. As for cookie cutter “net lists” yes they are hard hitting, yes they are efficient but they tend to suffer from two very glaring weeknesses (this is from a competitive standpoint); a- they will usually have a hard counter (rock paper scissors syndrome) or b- lack of target priority categorization for an experienced player (other than sheer saturation usually). This means that everyone who reads the odd blog or watches a video online will usually know what this list can acheive and what it aims to do, and by deduction can then pick it apart.
This brings us to the inner workings and the tactical symphony that a -TAC- list can create:
A chimera parking lot is just that. A sitting lot that shoots one chimera at a time… sometimes you move something other times you don’t. Any form of razorspam is the same. The volume of fire is intense but with good use of terrain, some luck and good tactical play a good general can pick apart such a list. Now, sometimes it can be very challenging to play a -TAC- style army. But, when wielded effectively they are a real prick (pun totally intended) to deal with!. Each unit though must work in unison in order to achieve results and the role of every unit will change. That whirlwind, amazing in some matchups and hence blowing light troops off objectives, but against marines… a little different trying to snipe out characters and weapons hidden with volume of wounds. That flamer dread being a frontliner, or bait. And in this lies the real challenge for every aspiring -TAC- commander; You must adapt to every situation, or fail while trying.
But this hardship is also the -TAC- armies greatest strength. Being ultimately flexible against a huge variety of different opponents. This means that it is not only good at a regular gaming night, but also at any tournament that you might want to attend.
Next time we will read about the benefits of flexibilty and the law of 9’s!
Cheers. Skari – out