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Tournament Army Composition
http://druchii.net/phpBB3/viewtopic.php?f=48&t=8991
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Author:  Underway [ Mon Jul 21, 2003 5:02 pm ]
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I know the thread has gotten off the topic of how to pick a tournament army to sprotsmanship issues but i'd like to bring it back. I don't have much experience with tournaments but I do show up to gaming nights at my local GW sometimes and need to bring a balanced force because I never know what is going to hit me. As such I have found that in a good balanced list you need REDUNDANCY. This reduces the fact that if one unit gets rocked the other will be able to deal with the issue.

For example. Heavy hitters : COK but I also take a Beastmaster on a Manticore (with the revision he is far more of a heavy hitter). THe Beastmaster is immune to terror, just like my noble on Dark Pegasi with deathmask who hunts mages and war machines, like my shades and Dark riders who both slow down marches etc...

I find that these ideas can translate into a fairly resiliant army that an opponent has a hard time dealing with due to the fact that if he say relies on magic, you assasinate his mage with the Noble OR the Dark riders. he can't take out both as easily as one and odds are you should be able to take him down a couple of notches. ;)

Author:  Ash010110 [ Mon Jul 21, 2003 5:12 pm ]
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Couldn't have said it better myself! It also makes your opponent more prone to making playing errors as his "radar" starts screaming "too many targets! too many targets!" The guys who always seem to make it to the top five have armies with lots of pairs. Whether it's two giants, or two chariots, or two heavy cav, or two RBT's, two mages, etc. . . redundency smooths out the random dice factor in the games. One guy who drew into fifth place b/c the real fifth place couldn't make the play-offs lost hard to a Bretonnian player b/c he had only ONE bone giant, ONE chariot unit, ONE ushabti. So basically, the bret player was able to deal with the threat. If your ONE bone gian wiffs on combat, he pops (to peasants no less !lol!)

Moral of the story: if you can take two of something. . . you probably should.
If you can only take one of something. . . make sure it has a "buddy" to do its job should it die.

Author:  Jeffleong13 [ Mon Jul 21, 2003 5:19 pm ]
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I am not convinced that you necessarily need "two" of everything, but you do need redundancy in what roles units will play. That's why I tend to shy away from the "uber unit" for a more distributed approach. It is a rare occassion that I will center my entire strategy on one unit. In most cases, I like to have at least 3 and preferably 4 units (or unit combinations) that can deliver some punch ... makes it a lot tougher for your opponent to counter.

J

Author:  Ash010110 [ Mon Jul 21, 2003 5:32 pm ]
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[quote="jeffleong13"]Back on topic ...

What other things do people think need to be considered in a tournament (and therefore all-around) army?

J[/quote]

The way I like to think of my tourney army list (whether my new spiffy drow, or my old, colorful brets) is to maximize the unit combinations in your army. This is usually called combined arms, but my buddies and I call it tag-teaming.

Example. You have two units of 7 heavy cav. You also have two mounted heroes. You can have the heroes do independent hunting, while the cav goes 5-6 wide and does their thing. Or you can put each one in a unit, and go 4x2 for extra hitting power and a rank. Different opponents and terrain will dictate what you do.

In my drow list, I have a unit of 11 execs and a noble. Sometimes (like agains elves or mainly infantry empire), my noble goes hunting alone, and the execs are 6 in front & 5 in rear to take on the low AS troops. If I got chaos or the army with an order of "extra cav" (not to be confused with "extra cheese"), then these two rank up to form a 4x3 so I am more maneuverable, have better ranks, and more concentrated attacks.

Another example is to have you're fast cav team up with another fast cav to blitz a flank with war machines (add harpies for extra redundency) or to tag-team with a hitting unit to exploit a flank on an enemy HtH unit.

The idea is to think of all the ways you can link your units together.

Final example from my bret list that carries over very well to the drow MSU strategy. I have unit of 10 halberdiers w/o command. Usually, they are the sacraficial screen for my 20 swordsmen and 6 knights. Sometimes, especially when I face lots of indep characters or flyers, they sit in the rear guard. This means that I arrange my line without screens, and put these little guys behind the main troops about 8-10" back. Why? So there I have an answer to fast cav and skirmishers that run around the narrow charge arc of my lances. 10 halberdiers can take a unit of fast cav and skirmishers b/c they usually go in beating said unit by two (one rank and usually outnumbering). The "sacraficial" spear elf unit could perform similar duty.

When planning an army, I find it helpful to get a big piece of paper, and draw all the ways I could deploy that would still give me different tactical options. If I can only think of 4-5 different ways I could start the game, then I tinker with the list until I get up to about 10 or so. Then, you basically have an army that can take on all comers, b/c you've already thought outside the box a little bit and won't be totally thrown by an opponent.

May peace be with you,
Ash

Author:  Underway [ Mon Jul 21, 2003 5:59 pm ]
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jeffleong13 wrote:
I am not convinced that you necessarily need "two" of everything, but you do need redundancy in what roles units will play.
J


I agree, two of everything lends itself to not enough unit in your army, especially with elves. It may work with the empire but not DE. This is mainlyt due to high points costs of DE units. However where DE units excell is in their "Multi-role" capability. For examle DR are the preimier multi role unit. Fast cav that can destroy war machines, hunt mages, reduce march moves, annoying shooting, and attack flanks of units to get rid of rank bonuses.

They are the ultimate REDUNDANCY unit. And when combine in the "tag-teaming approach" that was pointed out above they become deadly. However, when that stupid dwarven gyrocopter flames your dark riders you need a unit that can do the same job at say annoying shooting. Enter the shades who also have other "multi-roles"

So to recap. Multi-role units that overlap with other multi-role units. Combine these with the "tag team" concept and one starts to see how the army can be developed to be fairly resilient and deal with all kinds of problems. Due to the ability to take losses and still keep functioning in a respectable manner on the battlefield.

Author:  Peter $ [ Tue Jul 22, 2003 12:08 pm ]
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I agree very much to the approch that is decribed in this thred - try to consider which kind of armies you might meet, and try to take something that could stand up against all the different kinds. But when making a tournament army I also consider the following:

How fun is my army to play with? You will play your army 5-6 times over a very short period of time. If you're already tired of the way the army plays after game 2 or 3, your tournament is not going to be that great (even if you win your games).

In the last tournament i played one of my buddies told me he would make "the Empire shoty army from hell" because he was so tired of all the Chaos and VC armies that dominates our tournaments (in Denmark). He ended up meeting just one Chaos player, and basically had 5 (of 5) dead boring games because he really only had to deploy and then blast away.

So when making a tounament army it's a really good idea also considering whether it will be fun for you (and actually also your opponent) to play.

Peter $

Author:  Jeffleong13 [ Tue Jul 22, 2003 1:49 pm ]
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@Peter $ - An excellent point ... you do need to make sure that your army is fun for you to play as well. One of the things that I enjoy the most about the Dark Elves is that we really have something for every phase of the game - speedy manuever units, nice shooting, devastating magic, and some nasty hand to hand stuff ...

J

Author:  Drakken [ Tue Jul 22, 2003 4:59 pm ]
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The only thing I see you missed would be large skirmish units...either stuff left behind oppenants lines to disrupt units sent to kill WMs or block marches, or stuff like ambush. Or generally a large, decent combat unit, with a 360 Degree charge.

Generally, can you sit down a see a way to counter most basic army list ideas you can think of? If you can counter everything you can think of, all thats left is everything you've never encounter before, and thats half the fun of a tourney.

Author:  Jeffleong13 [ Tue Jul 22, 2003 5:15 pm ]
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Drakken wrote:
The only thing I see you missed would be large skirmish units...either stuff left behind oppenants lines to disrupt units sent to kill WMs or block marches, or stuff like ambush. Or generally a large, decent combat unit, with a 360 Degree charge.

Generally, can you sit down a see a way to counter most basic army list ideas you can think of? If you can counter everything you can think of, all thats left is everything you've never encounter before, and thats half the fun of a tourney.


And you will see some of it ... I know my list of stuff to counter always gets bigger when I get home from a Tournament ... :)

J

Author:  Dark Alliance [ Tue Jul 22, 2003 10:28 pm ]
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' Redundancy ' is the key really to these lists and has been reflected in Gav's approach to stupidity as part of the Revision, visavi the 2 for 1 Chariot option and ld9 for Knights. It is much more pertinent to successful army composition than simply trying to have 2 of everything. ( no disrespect intended to the person who made that comment by the way ).

When I look at my current all rounder list I see various unit combinations which can be changed to suit any particular threats posed by my opponents, whether they be horde, magical, shooty or combat. Or all 4!

I also consider what impact on the game I may be forced to deal with as I lose units, particularly my general or my knights. If they die can I still win? Are the killer combinations still there?

Oh and I too sketch out my various deployment options and a certain amount of movement options ahead of using the list. I also physically lay out the unit on my table at home to see first hand what it will look like from both sides.

Author:  Drakken [ Wed Jul 23, 2003 2:56 am ]
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You know, this has been one of the most interesting discussions I've had in a while.

Also, I never actually consider deploying my army, than walking around to the other side of the table to look at it and make any decisions about future deployment or attack lines. Thats not a bad idea at all.......

Author:  Dark Alliance [ Wed Jul 23, 2003 8:15 am ]
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Drakken wrote:

Also, I never actually consider deploying my army, than walking around to the other side of the table to look at it and make any decisions about future deployment or attack lines. Thats not a bad idea at all.......



This was one of the first pieces of advice I received when I started to play this game, offered by the local store manager. I still do it now whenever I meet a new or unusual situation, or when I am trying out a new list.

Author:  Jeffleong13 [ Wed Jul 23, 2003 1:19 pm ]
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What I have started recommending to folks is that they sketch out the board and try to predict the flow of the game even before deployment - try it a couple of times and then see how close you came when the game is over.

J

Author:  Underway [ Wed Jul 23, 2003 4:57 pm ]
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Was it Sun-Tzu who said that the battle is often won before it is started. The Prussians put this into effect before the WW1 by creating the general staff. All they did was sit around and make plans for battles. I really like the fact that you guys take this to such a great level in Warhammer. I will certainly start walking around the table to see how my army can move and deploy (and also see how scary they look if I were a High elf) :mrgreen:

Author:  Jeffleong13 [ Wed Jul 23, 2003 5:24 pm ]
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Tell us how it goes for you

Good luck -
J

Author:  Deathblade [ Wed Jul 23, 2003 6:10 pm ]
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This thread has totally made me rethink my army, thanks alot, i've been playing dark elves for quite a while now, and some of these ideas i'd already learned, but some of them are new and very insightful, so many more plans and strategies are coming to my head now.

Now that i've got that out of the way, i think that the suggestion of redundancy (or back ups in case one fails) and not to use two of everything goes well with making sure the army is fun to play. If you were to have two of everything, you'd have very few types of units, and personally, i really enjoy playing with many different units. And by thinking that there should be at leat two different units that can assume a certain role, also makes it more fun, cause a whole new range of possibilities all of a sudden forms for you, you start to think of all the different uses and skills each unit has.

Author:  Jeffleong13 [ Wed Jul 23, 2003 7:04 pm ]
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On the issue of redundancy in army selection ... here's the army that I took to the last Philly GT, and my reasoning behind it ... it was a Slaanesh Chaos Army (obviously with Elven figs):

164 - Exalted Champion of Slaanesh w/ Flail, Shield, Book of Secrets
---> The Book of Secrets gets me the 5th Dispel Die, and he becomes basically a guided missile to take out chariots, wizards, etc. Very effective in most games.
145 - Sorcerer of Chaos Undivided (Lvl 2) w/ Dispel Scroll
---> Usually a Fire mage to provie a little bit of firepower to the army
135 - Bray Shaman of Chaos Undivided (Lvl 2) w/ Staff of Darkoth
---> Shadow mage, mainly to cast Steed on the Exalted. Unseen Lurker is the threat for which people hold dispel dice.
165 - 20 Marauders w/ Lt Armor, Shield, Full CC
---> Ranks and banner and 4+ save. They also tend to provide a focus for enemy shooting and attention.
139 - Beast Herd w/ 19 Gors (HW + Shld), Full CC
---> Mobile ranks and banner
93 - 5 Marauder Horse w/ Flail, Std, Music
---> Medium Cav - can take a unit by itself if it can get to the flank ... Little Hammer Unit (LHU) #1
71 - 5 Marauder Horse w/ Music
---> Redirector and harasser
275 - 5 Chosen Knights of Slaanesh w/ Std, Music
---> Obvious threat supreme - designed to be the focus of enemy attention. Can take a ranked unit in the front unless they suffer a couple of casualties. Hammer Unit #1
320 - 20 Bestigors of Slaanesh w/ Full CC, Beastbanner
---> The real hitting power of the list - full ranks & banner plus 11 S6 attacks on the charge is huge (and, thankfully, no longer possible w/o BSB). Hammer Unit #2
90 - 6 Furies
---> War machine/lone wizard hunters
30 - 5 Chaos Hounds
30 - 5 Chaos Hounds
---> Redirectors
120 - Chaos Chariot
85 - Tuskgor Chariot
---> Threaten damage over a large area - rarely used in combination with other units, simply because it's not required in the Chaos list. People are unduly scared of chariots in most cases ... so it's worth taking them. Let's call these LHU #2 & #3
287 - Dragon Ogre Drake w/ HA, GW
---> In my opinion ... the most overrated model in the Chaos list. He is, however, a beautiful target. I can't tell you how many times people focused on him to the exclusion of far more serious threats (usually the Bestigor). Just think of it - with only 6 attacks (now only 5), he can't beat a ranked unit from the front unless he rolls perfectly.

With two real hammer units (Knights and Bestigor), this army was pretty tough to deal with. The hitting power of the army is distributed, and I can attack in many different ways. Rather than putting all my eggs in a single basket, I was able to present a multiple threat to my opponent.

I ended up losing a game against Matthew York's Skaven, in a game we both agreed was a truly horrendous showing of dice rolling on my part (including the full 5 Chosen Knights bouncing off a unit of Clanrats after causing only one wound ... and losing two Knights ... oh, and getting run down). I also tied to a truly disgusting Khorne army ... through stupidity on my part.

J

Author:  Drakken [ Wed Jul 23, 2003 8:07 pm ]
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1st: I've mapped how a battle shoud go before, and I'm usually fairly right, save not being able to predict large numbers of highly mobile units well, (Hence my problem fighting Beastman and Brettonians of late).

2nd: 97 Models in a Chaos army....damn that looks nice. You done with GTs for the year, or visiting any of the last two?

Author:  Jeffleong13 [ Wed Jul 23, 2003 8:25 pm ]
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Drakken wrote:
1st: I've mapped how a battle shoud go before, and I'm usually fairly right, save not being able to predict large numbers of highly mobile units well, (Hence my problem fighting Beastman and Brettonians of late).


In a world where mobility is king, mobile armies will always be the most problematic. Brettonians, while fast, are really not that mobile - the Lance formation is far less manueverable than a normal cavalry formation - they can still be funnelled into areas and can even be blocked with fast cav (which is always fun). Beastman are a much harder proposition, especially with the ambush ability, but the size of the larger herds tends to limit their ability to get away too quickly.

If you are having trouble with these guys, why don't you just try to map out one or two turns ahead - once you are getting that most of the time, try for three ... and so on. At some point, you will find that you don't even really need the map anymore.

Drakken wrote:
2nd: 97 Models in a Chaos army....damn that looks nice. You done with GTs for the year, or visiting any of the last two?


Thanks - it's a nasty army, and rather deceptive. My army for next year will be the "un-cheezy" version of Chaos ... five of us are doing a combined display for Baltimore with mainly Marauders. After Baltimore next year, it's back to Dark Elves for me ... finally.

I am done with GTs for this year. Philly left a bit of a sour taste in my mouth (as with many), and I don't want to press my luck with the wife 8)

You are going to Charlotte, right? Good luck -
Jeff

Author:  Friedmalekith [ Wed Jul 23, 2003 8:53 pm ]
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I've been to a tournament 2 months ago with a list similar to what Jeff suggested.

I had a highborn on dark steed, 2 sorceresses (7 PD, 5DD), 2 Ranked Units (20 corsairs, 20 spearmen), 3 harrasment units (2 units or 5 DR and a unit of 5 shades), one RBT for support and 3 main hammers (2 chariots and one unit of 5 CoK). I did fairly well, scoring a massacre, a solid victory, a minor victory, a draw and a loss.

In my opinion, what is important is to have a role in each phase of the game.

Cheers!

Author:  Jeffleong13 [ Wed Jul 23, 2003 9:00 pm ]
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FriedMalekith wrote:
In my opinion, what is important is to have a role in each phase of the game.


I to agree that you need something in each phase, which is actually the biggest reason I like DE over Chaos. When I am playing DE, however, the first thing that I skimp on is usually magic ...

J

Author:  Drakken [ Wed Jul 23, 2003 9:01 pm ]
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Lets see, my usual list is 2 Hammer Units, 3 Standard Blocks, 2 Harrasments, 3 Shooty Units (2 Warriors and RBT) with High Sorceress on DP, 2 Sorceress (11 PD, 7 DD), and an Assassin. I use almost exculsively all infantry lists anymore, and have something to counter most stuff. The problem I run into is dealing with stuff I don't know about, or stuff that extremely mobile.

And Yeah, I'm trying to get the weekend off to go to Charolette.

Author:  Dark Alliance [ Wed Jul 23, 2003 11:11 pm ]
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jeffleong13 wrote:
On the issue of redundancy in army selection ... here's the army that I took to the last Philly GT, and my reasoning behind it ...
J


This is a good way to develop this thread so I thought I would offer an explanation about my tournament list and the redundancy it provides.


The general - Highborn, heavy armour, sea dragon cloak, enchanted shield, gauntlet of power, seal of ghrond and manticore

This is a good all round unit, the mobility provided ensures I can quickly get him into combat or move him around to effect leadership roles and terror tests. He is the main combat hammer unit capable of taking units on his own provided he gets the flank or rear. US5 negates ranks. He provides the all important 5th dispel dice.Also, has the ability to charge over the top of lesser units.

Noble - heavy armour, sea dragon cloak, shield, lance, dark pegasus and lifetaker.

Flyer ensures he can make long range movement or charges. It also ensures he can always fire Lifetaker. Good support combat unit especially efficient at flank charging and supporting other units in multi charge situations.

Sorceress - tome, scroll and dark steed.

Takes the lore of Shadow. The tome ensures she has a good chance of getting the ultimate spell - Unseen Lurker - and the dark steed ensures she will be where I want her to take the best effects from the Lore. The lore of Shadow enhances the movement of the army. Steed of Shadows is always selected as it keeps all characters mobile should their mounts die.

Sorceress - cloak and scroll.

Takes Dark Art which is really enhanced by the movement characteristics of Shadow Lore. Adds the all important 7th power dice.

5 DRs with rxbs and standard.

Harrasser and charge unit. The standard making all the difference. This unit works in tandem with any of the other units to give more than a fair chance of winning, especially if they get the flank.

5 DRs with rxbs.

Another harrasser and mage / war machine hunter which can work in conjunction with others in combat.


5 DRs with musician.

The bait unit primarily. Works to screen others and to set up charges for my hammer units.

8 COKs with full command and war banner.

The other main hammer unit. Supported by any / all the other units in combat.

8 Harpies.

Top harrasser.

5 Shades.

Yet another harrasser!

Hydra.

There to offer a los block for the Highborn. Missile magnet. Combat unit and another terror causer. Nice unit strength too!.


The manouverability of this list ensures that my opponent will be guessing most turns exactly where the charges are coming from. Little additions such as the Hydra and the standard in the DRs offer plenty of scope for maximising CR potential should either or both hammer units get taken out.

Look at the list again and you will see the various combinations available to me for each phase of the game. Movement is enhanced particularly by the Lore of Shadow. Combat by the high movement rate. Check out how the various units can work in conjunction to provide the necessary elements for a successful round of combat - hits, wounds ( obviously ) and bonuses ( banners, flanks or rear and rank ).

Hope this is of some use. :D

Author:  - human [ Thu Jul 24, 2003 2:46 am ]
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did i do more than just prime my army? ;) !lol!

Author:  Goricexii [ Thu Jul 24, 2003 8:55 am ]
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Quote:
Listen, sonny Jim. Sleeping like this will add ten years to your life. I learned it from Keith Richards when I toured with the Stones. This may be the reason why Keith cannot be killed by conventional weapons


Nice quote. Almost suggests an army theme.

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