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post #1 of 162 (permalink) Old 09-08-13, 05:05 PM Thread Starter
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Default You brought three Heldrakes?! What a dick!

When did this attitude start to take over in 40k? And why?

I'm not referring to just bringing Heldrakes but any strong unit used en masse. Why do we as a 40k community (myself included to be honest) automatically assume a list with mutiple strong units is 'cheesey' and the player is a dick?

I personally started to notice this phenomena when the Space Wolves codex came out. If you brought 3 squads of Long Fangs people tended to assume you were a win-at-all-costs jerk. Then Vendettas had their run, then Night Scythes, and currently Heldrakes and Wave Serpents. There may be more, feel free to post them, but those are the one's I could come up with.

Why are these players not considered strong list builders who've managed to build powerful armies with relative points efficiency? Why are the considered amateur dicks with no creativity or generalsmanship? Is it because it seems some how easier to win with those armies?

Even if it is easier to win, why do we tend to get so angry about it? I used to get angry at the power of Wave Serpents used en masse. However I've recently begun to think of it as a challenge to overcome and I think it's making me a better player for it.

What are your thoughts on this phenomena?

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post #2 of 162 (permalink) Old 09-08-13, 05:59 PM
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I think it's more to do with the percieved balance issues between codex's, if a new codex has a powerful toy that has few countermeasures and your opponent spams them, then irritation towards the person that prefers to break a game before it's even started is inevitable.

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post #3 of 162 (permalink) Old 09-08-13, 06:05 PM
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Are you talking casual games or tourny scene?

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post #4 of 162 (permalink) Old 09-08-13, 06:35 PM
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Originally Posted by Iron_Freak220 View Post
Why are these players not considered strong list builders who've managed to build powerful armies with relative points efficiency? Why are the considered amateur dicks with no creativity or generalsmanship?
It's a balance exploitation issue. So many armies cannot answer 3 Heldrakes that it makes the game less enjoyable. It forces everyone else bar Tau into 'Forge World, Allies, or go fuck yourself!' situations (Dark Angels, Chaos Daemons and Chaos Space Marines are all 6th edition Codices that have essentially no native anti-flyer, let alone any 5th edition Codices). Bringing 2 Heldrakes and a unit of Spawn is still pretty brutal (probably as brutal as 3 Heldrakes if you play it right), but people don't frown on it so much as most people can bring an answer to it or create a new tactic to deal with it instead of just having to buy more stuff.

Flyers tend to make the game into an arms race - I don't really like the Stormraven model, or it's idea, and I didn't really fancy taking up a valuable Allied slot to take one. But I didn't really have much choice - it was the best, most effective thing to bring in a meta in which everyone else had a Flyer (I also converted a Mortis Dreadnought, which looks silly but I keep it since it's absolutely pivotal to protect my sorry ass from Heldrakes when I play DA).

3 Heldrakes is not actually that overpowered. Well, ok, yeah, against 90% of armies, it is. But an army with 9 Hydras or 6 Broadsides with attached characters to give them Skyfire and double FOC to give them 2 Aegis Lines with Quad-Guns will just laugh in your face. People don't like unbalanced lists - I probably gave a guy way too hard a time at an event I attended for bringing possible the shittiest list I've ever seen. It works both ways - people hate it when you bring an imbalanced list with 3 of the toughest, most powerful flyers in the game, people hate it when you bring 180 Boyz with 2 Big Meks, people hate it when you bring Footdar.

Originally Posted by Iron_Freak220 View Post
Is it because it seems some how easier to win with those armies?
It is. 3 Heldrakes is more powerful than any other combination of Fast Attack slots. You roll dice for them to enter play, then you point them at stuff you want to die. Stuff duly dies.

Originally Posted by Iron_Freak220 View Post
If you brought 3 squads of Long Fangs people tended to assume you were a win-at-all-costs jerk
You weren't? You were honestly bringing 3 units of Long Fangs for fluff reasons, or aesthetic? No, you were doing it to win. That's not a problem in itself, but you have to admit that if you're bringing 3 Heldrakes or 6 Night Scythes or 3x6 Long Fangs, you're trying to win at all costs.

Not sure what I'm trying to say here, because while I see where you're coming from, I would personally not enjoy a game against someone bringing 3 Heldrakes.


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post #5 of 162 (permalink) Old 09-08-13, 06:43 PM
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Not to disagree Iron_Freak, but i think this whole mess start with the chaos codex back in 4th edition. The infamous lash prince oblit spam was considered by many to be a beardy list. I admire your perspective on facing such lists, as in an actual 40k battle, such "lists" are very possible. I think most peoples distaste for these lists stems from the fact that they are generally unfun to play against. Fighting against three helldrakes offers little to no counter play unless you are expecting it and have an exorbitant amount of flyers or flyer defense. If youre playing a balanced list, and have say an aegis defense line, the choas/necron player is going to focus that down until its dead and then rape the rest of your army because flyers are difficult to bring down without them. You could make the argument that helldrakes are ostly tooled for anti infantry and taking three will put holes in your list, but will it really? Three helldrakes is roughly six hundred points, and a player could easily fit a fair amount of anti tank into their list at the 2000 point level.

Spam lists are generally unfun to play against, with the general of said army usually just try to WAAC for the sake of it.

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post #6 of 162 (permalink) Old 09-08-13, 07:23 PM
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Yeah I think's basically the difference between casually enjoying the game and playing it seriously. I for one rarely have the same unit repeated and despite knowing some units are worse than others I'll still go for them for a bit of variety, such as having shooty terminators over thunder hammer ones.
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post #7 of 162 (permalink) Old 09-08-13, 07:50 PM
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too me, its a case of enjoyment..i like to play fluffy lists for the my ravenwing...but when some turns up with 3 heldrakes i wont even unbox my models i just declare him the win...not to be a baby or anything its just why wast 2 hours on a game where im being beaten by a book and a person with no imagination.

i prefer to play people who are VERY creative with there lists and really think about their tactics, so when you play it is a battle of wits..not codexes...thats my point of view.
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post #8 of 162 (permalink) Old 09-08-13, 08:12 PM
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It is all a problem of game "math." And its been the same basic algorithm with every edition of the game.

MidnightSun said it very well. Some armies have units that tend to be more points and/or damage efficient than others. When I bring that every game or bring as many of them per game then I'm not writing an army so much as choosing the army optimized by the author of the army book.

For example, under the much maligned 3.5 Chaos codex in addition to iron warriors being a by-word for cheese, Bloodletters were ridiculously powerful and would easily sweep and enemies flank. They could charge the same turn they were summoned (i.e. you couldn't shoot them first), were strength 5, had 3+/5+ saves, had power weapons, and were basically fearless. While I had enough to bring 3 units of 8, that was pretty excessive. They were effectively a troops choice, who point for point were only a hairs breadth less effective than assault terminators.

The same is essentially true with Heldrakes. The same was true of nobz on cyboars in 2nd ed. Or vindicators in 3rd ed.

Again to paraphrase MidnightSun, if you wouldn't have fun fighting against your own army then it's probably cheesy.

Another quick test, if an army which is min-maxed in such a way steamrolls most "balanced" all-comers lists then it might be abusive. Legal within the rules, sure, but abusive.

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post #9 of 162 (permalink) Old 09-08-13, 08:31 PM
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Don't forget the part where Black Legion can now run FOUR Heldrakes. Personally, as a fan of giant walker mechs, I was trying to find ways of putting Farsight + Tau to make Four (or five) Riptide forces.

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post #10 of 162 (permalink) Old 09-08-13, 08:51 PM
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Riptides are also pretty cheesy- the only wounds the enemy's been around long enough to cause on me was two from a vindicars turbo round a couple nova wounds

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