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This is not meant as a full on tactica on deployment, as that would require intimate knowledge of every army and every terrain possibility. Some generalizations can be made, though.

When watching other games, especially those on Vassal, I can usually spot the victor to be simply by looking at the final positions of units after deployment, but before the roll is made for first turn.

There are generally two problems I see.

1. Failure to use the cover available.
2. Failure to appreciate the harm the enemy can do on turn one.

Currently, vehicles and fast vehicles can move and shoot with little to no decrease in output. So, why would you place one in the open in front of a railgun heavy Tau force when there are plenty of lvl-3/los-blocking terrain features in your DZ? Such simple mistakes have cost many players the game before it even began. I just witnessed this same scenario recently. There is no reason to hand your opponent the opportunity on a silver platter. Make your foe EARN the right to target your tanks.

Also, when the enemy has such a thing as B L A S T weapons, why do most gamers insist on packing their foot infantry in nice small little bundles of joy? Even if you believe an almighty 3+ armour save will protect you, why would you risk having to roll more than 3 or 4 dice? Clumping together will force you to roll upward of 10 dice instead. If your foe is packing lots of long range tank killers, keep your tanks where these tank killers cannot see them. If your foe has an obvious corridor of terrain, perfect for covering his assault advance, then make use of this yourself. Either seriously contest this corridor, or leave it to him, allowing him to waste a few turns trying to get to you, only to find that the other portion of his force no longer exists and he now faces overwhelming odds.

Here's one item that might help newer players understand a little bit about the deployment mistakes often seen, and how to avoid them.

During your next game, take a look at the other side's deployment. Head over there and take a look at your own from the other perspective. What would you do to cause hell to your own force using your 'borrowed' new army? What mistakes can you see in your own DZ that you could probably have corrected had you only placed x unit a few inches to the left or right.

Remember, in half of your games, you will NOT go first. Poor deployments mean that in half your games, you risk your army on a single die roll. Going first does not win the game for an army, but going second with a craptacular deployment pretty much guarantees that you will lose, and embarrassingly so.
 

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Some very good points you make, Hes.

I know I learned a hard lesson about deployment when my armoured BA list got raped on the first turn against my friend's infiltrating trait marines. I should have made better use of area terrain to hide my tanks from his damned missile launchers. By the time my first turn came around, half my tanks were dead.
 

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Hey all.

I'm a new Eldar player and have quickly realized that deployment is quite possibly the most critical stage of the game. I think I've only played about 5 or so games and am getting *better* at deployment but I could still use some help.

So far I've only played one of my friends who has a huge ork army. My units are outnumbered by a lot. I've learned to keep all my skimmers/vehicles/big point values behind cover to start. But unfortunately, this leaves little or no cover left for the meat of my army, troops. My DA squads get reamed on turn one as I can never seem to win the first roll. Is there anything I can do to keep 1/2 of my army from getting demolished on the first turn when I lose the roll? Eldar saves seem to be quite lacking compared to the number of shots that are hitting my squads. Everything that's not behind cover (because it's all in use) is gone or useless by the time it's my turn. Then all I have left is bigger point values which pretty much just get one turn to act before the same happens to them.

Any suggestions? Thanks.

Snoeseven
 

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Hey all.

I'm a new Eldar player and have quickly realized that deployment is quite possibly the most critical stage of the game. I think I've only played about 5 or so games and am getting *better* at deployment but I could still use some help.

So far I've only played one of my friends who has a huge ork army. My units are outnumbered by a lot. I've learned to keep all my skimmers/vehicles/big point values behind cover to start. But unfortunately, this leaves little or no cover left for the meat of my army, troops. My DA squads get reamed on turn one as I can never seem to win the first roll. Is there anything I can do to keep 1/2 of my army from getting demolished on the first turn when I lose the roll? Eldar saves seem to be quite lacking compared to the number of shots that are hitting my squads. Everything that's not behind cover (because it's all in use) is gone or useless by the time it's my turn. Then all I have left is bigger point values which pretty much just get one turn to act before the same happens to them.

Any suggestions? Thanks.

Snoeseven
First things first.... how much terrain are you using? BGB recommends about 25-30%. I find the less terrain, the more boring the game. Keep in mind I usually game with shooty armies and I still think lots of terrain is good.

Next, what kind of area terrain are you using? You'll improve your odds by using at least one medium/ large lvl 3 building as it serves double duty; not only can you hide you tanks behind it, but you can put your infantry INSIDE it. If it's large enough, make sure your troops are 6.5 " inside the building and no one will be able to shoot them.


Games with little or almost non-existent area terrain are inane; I don't really feel like spending 10 minutes setting up my forces to decide the winner of the game by the first turn dice off....:suicide:


As for being outnumbered, try a Refused Flank http://www.warmongerclub.com/articles/pdeflo_formations06.htm
 

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the other crucial factor would be how far out you deploy. Just because you have a 12" deployment zone,does not mean you have to start out 12" out.
If your opp. has fast movement,fleet,infiltrate option,deepstrike option,etc.. then you need to take into consideration how far out to start. Also range of his wpns
If you have rapid fire wpns,then you need to calculate ea others movements so you can move up to where your entire unit(s) can rapid fire before his do.
 

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SnoeSeven
I think the key is set up always like you will get 2nd turn. I sometimes prefer 2nd turn. I've won many games because on turn 6 I get to go last. Landing a fast unit right on top of the objective the last turn is incredibility usefully.

Eldar are fast enough that even hiding behind things you can still go where you need to go. Also most ork weapons are short ranged. Make sure to use cover to protect from these few units. ie lootas, shock attack gun, or war wagons.

Refused flank might work. Since eldar are fast, you might even pull it off after 1rst turn. Wait to see where the orcs are going then move to the other side of the board. This tactic is why I play speed freaks instead of the foot sloggers.
 

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Thanks for the replies, especially the link to the formations. That was really helpful and has given me much to think about. I have a lot to read about strategy still.

Answers to the various replies...

Amount of terrain: We were playing at one of the GW battle bunkers. They had some pretty nice tables, actually. I'm pretty sure it was about 25%. But we were playing 1500 points, so all the cover was taken by wave serpent, walkers, vypers, etc. That way they wouldn't get nuked on the first dice roll.

How far to deploy out: Yeah I know I don't need to deploy far out, and I'll probably try to deploy closer to the edge next time. But I'm not sure that would have helped much. One of the main problems is that he has a huge squad of lootas with def guns (sp?). They have 48" range and have a number of shots depending on how high you roll. Oddly enough, my friend is insanely lucky with dice. So his lootas almost always get max # shots. So even if I deploy at the back of the table, the army is still mostly in range. He's also going to add another squad of lootas with def guns...this is going to be painful.

And the HQ with the shock attack gun with crazy range...*shudder*. So tired of getting my Exarchs, Wraithlord, etc pulled directly into the warp. :shok:

Orks with short(er) range and eldar speed: I've heard that orks have short range and are easily outmaneuvered but I've yet to see it. Like I said before, some of his units tear mine up at a great distance. And I don't necessarily want to close with his, because I'll get destroyed in cc because of his numerical superiority. He also has a max'd out squad of storm boys that fly across the map. Besides that, weird boy getting a 2nd Waaaagh! really makes his army quite mobile. So basically I'm looking at: turn 1, get nuked by def guns and shock attack. turn 2, same as before but add assault from storm boys and anything else that made it across the board. So far, the orks seem to be better at shooting, moving, cc, tougher, stronger, and have more numbers. It was quite a frustrating game.

Assume getting 2nd turn: I like this idea, just because it's pragmatic. Hope for the best expect the worst.
 

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One common mistake is not considering the other sides strengths compaired to yours. If they are stronger in the assault then you, deploy farther back in your deployment zone. If they are stronger shooters than deploy closer to them in order to close the gap for assault faster.

I play Space Wolves often and I am used to deploying right out in front in vehicles. But if I am playing against something like a genestealer army then its better to get out of my vehicles and deploy in gun lines closer to the board edge.
 

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Ork armies definetely go with the roll. You need to start praying to the dice gods. that's what Orks do. Basically all or nothing.
 

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Ork armies definetely go with the roll. You need to start praying to the dice gods. that's what Orks do. Basically all or nothing.
hah. nice. Yeah I'm betting since I haven't gone first in the last four games my time is coming up. But I am going with the Ork mentality. My army is going to rock in the next few games cause I'll actually be fielding fully assembled and painted models which look amazing. Before I've been proxying everything. So...like the Orks...paint it red and it goes faster. Make the army look awesome and it'll be awesome.
 
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