Jump to content

Welcome to The Bolter and Chainsword
Register now to gain access to all of our features. Once registered and logged in, you will be able to create topics, post replies to existing threads, give reputation to your fellow members, get your own private messenger, post status updates, manage your profile and so much more. If you already have an account, login here - otherwise create an account for free today!
Photo

Water Tactics Battle Report


This topic has been archived. This means that you cannot reply to this topic.
72 replies to this topic

#26
Wolf's Bane

Wolf's Bane

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 384 posts

I'm going to Chicago on Octuber (8th to 14th) and I would like to visit the Battle Bunker there. I think Wisconsin is not very far from chicago, doesn't it? :D

Hmm. Remind me when the dates arrive. Chicago ain't too difficult for me to reach. :whistlingW:


I will don't worry!!! :)

Anyway, I'm making the summary for reports with my army of SoB. I would say it maybe be a Fire Army but I'm trying to apply Water techings. I hope to post at least one of them todoy ot tomorrow.
Keep faith!
Keep the Empire!

We'll keep the Daemons where they belongs to!! and We'll keep the Emperor's research!!

Inquisitor Gravis, a Thor's Follower!

#27
Aidoneus

Aidoneus

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 4,214 posts
Well, I'm still hoping Silent will come post a response to my last long post. I'm waiting to respond to Number6 until that happens (or until I get really bored one day :lol: ).

I do want to add one bit of shameless self-promotion. I've made a list for my first ever Ordos army (hurrah!). I just couldn't help getting really interested in them after all these discussions. Anyway, here is the link. I'd really appreciate any C&C you have time to give.

Thanks!
New Year's Resolution 2007: Keep track of my wins and losses. (note: only 1 vs. 1 games counted)

-Chaos (32/6/7) -Space Marines (3/0/0) -Necrons (4/1/0) -Tyranids (17/2/1) -Inquisition (67/13/13)
Total: (123/22/21) W/L/D


#28
Aidoneus

Aidoneus

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 4,214 posts

...In this sense, shooting is "default" only because it is also "decisive". It is the best tactical option, at least until your enemy's numbers have been reduced down to a manageable size.

I agree with everything you said about this except for the fact that shooting is "decisive." I would argue that shooting is a Water army's default strategy for the exact opposite reason; because it isn't decisive. Water armies don't want to commit to any given course of action until the enemy provides an exploitable weakness. Shooting allows the Water army to keep all their options open, so they effectively haven't commited to anything. If they were to charge into CC, they are absolutely commited to that course of action until whatever unit they've charged (plus any other enemy units that will probably charge in as well) is gone.

... I'm starting to think that my own assertion earlier on -- using Eldar as the example -- is not so solid. I think we're starting to agree about what distinguishes true Water units from units that are merely Waterish. I also think it's fair to say that an army primarily composed of Water units can be successfully employed as a Water army. But where is the dividing line? How much is nature (unit and list composition) and how much is nurture (overall tactical approach), to use another analogy?

Agreed. I too would love to hear some other opinions on this. [hint, hint ;) ]

My next question is, are there any areas of overlap between elements, mostly in terms of army composition?

I think these are valid comparisons, and, in fact, have already been thinking along these lines. Your army list and batrep here definitely reinforce the Air/Water similarities. I would say that Air only ever has strength in either ranged firepower or close combat power because it's that specialization that truly distinguishes Air units from Water units. To be effective, they must employ their specialty, overwhelmingly, on small pieces of the enemy. Water armies never have to worry about things in quite that way. Move, shoot, or assault ... it's all dependent upon the current enemy being faced. And oftentimes that kind of decision-making is made individually, at the unit level. Air units and entire Air armies have those decisions pre-made before the game even begins, before the opponent is even determined.

You make a good point about the relationship between Air and Water. I'm not sure it's necessarily a hard-and-fast rule, but it certainly would seem to apply most of the time.

I think at least one similarity exists between Water and Fire. Both of them require mobile units, but not necessarily fast, speedy units. Water requires mobility because it needs to keep it's tactical options open for as long as is possible. If you sit still, that's impossible. Similarly, Fire units must be able to get to the enemy in order to inflict its will; impossible if forced to stay put. In both cases, speed is definitely helpful, if it's available, but neither is it truly a requirement. So a good way to defeat both types of armies is to inhibit their inherent mobility. Anything you can do to control the movement choices of the Water or Fire army will go a long way toward being able to beat them.

This makes a lot of sense. While it's not always possible to cripple mobility (GKs, for example, have it inherently), when it is possible it helps a lot. For example, if a person could take out both Land Raiders in Silent's sample list, that player would be in good shape to win the game. Similarly, I used to play against a Space Wolf player, and my first priority every game was busting his 5-6 Rhinos to buy myself enough time to shoot down his footslogging men before they got to me.

I would say that both Fire and Earth share the capability to overwhelm entire armies all at once. The difference is that your typical Earth army does so from long range with heavy firepowr, while your typical Fire army tries to do so up close and personal, in the assault phase.

While I agree with this similarity, it fits in more with the playstyles comparissons, and not so much with the army composition comparissons. Earth and Fire armies will be, must be, almost entirely different in nature as far as composition (except the weird uber-horde 'Nids list TJ mentioned, which defies categorization into one element).


I've thought of a couple more things I want to talk about. Since most of this discussion is in this thread already, I'm just going to go ahead and post them here, and hope some mod comes and moves the whole conversation at some point. It doesn't make much sense to have the conversation going on in two different threads simultaneously.

So, the two new ideas I wanted to discuss are these:

1) Do any of the elements benefit more from playing games with certain points limits?
2) To what extent is it possible for an army to be, simultaneously, two different elements at once?

I was thinking last night, and I came to the conclusion that Water armies are best in the 1000pt-2000pt range. Here's my thinking: Any lower than 1000pts, and strategy tend to go out the window. With 400 or 500pts, a player only has a few units, and small units at that. There simply aren't enough units to use clever strategies. At in games of more than 2000pts, there are simply too many units to successfully engage in most of the clever Waterish strategies Silent outlined (LoS and VP denial, pruning, focus fire, fork/skewer, etc...). With the board so crowded, it comes down to which army can eliminate the other army more quickly. In fact, I would argue that a 2000pt Water army needs to be fairly elitist, even for a Water army, to be fully effective.

Consider: if you and your opponent each have over 80 models, it's extremely hard to hide any of your units completely from any of his units. Certainly, even if you can hide one unit from one of his units, chances are he'll have LoS to other units of yours with his unit, and LoS to your hidden unit with other units of his. This overcrowding of the board makes it very difficult to enact clever strategies.

Of course, all this means less if you play on a larger board. While 5000pts per side is a lot on a standard 4'x6' board, it seems quite reasonable when you play on a full 5'x9' ping-pong table.

And what about the other elements?

Air, I think, suffers even more than Water from higher points games. Well, first off, a good Air army is almost impossible to pull off at fewer than 1000pts, simply because they're so very elitist. But back to my main point, at greater than 2000pts, the board gets very crowded. Even if the Air army itself doesn't have that many models, whatever army it's facing will. That means the enemy will be running in very large chunks, which makes it considerably harder for an Air army to overpower flanks. Also, what I said about LoS for the Water armies applies just as much to Air armies. And with Air armies usually even more elitist than Water armies, they depend even more on LoS denial to survive.

Fire, in my experience, doesn't work well at low points values. About 1500pts seems to be the point where Fire armies become viable, and they get more effective around 2000pts. As with any army constrained to a single Force Org, Fire armies start suffering a bit at over 2500pts, but if they're allowed multiple Force Orgs, they can remain effective even at very high points limits. Indeed, one could argue that Fire armies prefer higher than normal points limits, since that allows them to cover more of the board without actually spreading themselves thinly, thus allowing them to shut down mobile armies' ability to avoid CC.

Earth seems to be a more consistent army. In my experience, Earth armies are just as effective from 500pts on up. This, in my mind, is because Earth armies tend to sit still and shoot, a strategy neither helped nor hindered by tighter clustering.



My next question is: to what extent can an army be two different elments simultaneously? Such an army might bring up interesting questions about the elemental category structure. For example, it might lend some insight into the connections between the different elements. But before we get into that, we need to figure out whether such hybrid armies actually can exist.

Two examples have been mentioned so far in this thread: my Biker list, and my 'Nids list TJ mentioned. I'm not actually sure how to categorize the 'Nid list, but TJ put forth the proposition that it is an Earth/Fire list.

The Biker list is clearly in the Air/Water range. The question is, is it Air, is it Water, is it somewhere in between, or is it both completely Air and completely Water at the same time. Let's even go so far as to say I put a power fist-wielding vet sgt. into every squad, just for the sake of argument. Given my flexibility and reactionary tactics, I think it would be foolish to claim that the army is not at all Water. Likewise, given the extreme speed and maneuverability, it would be foolish to claim that it is not at all Air.

The difference between an army that is parts Air and parts Water, and an army that is simultaneously both Air and Water is that the latter would fit the description of each element perfectly, whereas the former would only fit certain aspects of each element's description. Here we see the reason I postulated the addition of power fist vet sgts. Without those power fists, my list would be predominately shooty. This violates one aspect (complete insouciance as to method of engaging enemy) of Water. Therefore, even though my army had several other definitively Waterish characteristics, it failed to be completely Water, and thus fell into the range of "Air, with aspects of Water." However, once I add in the power fists, my army is very capable of dealing with assaults, and I wouldn't think twice about charging in instead of shooting, if the situation demanded. Therefore, with that slight change, my Biker army would fulfill all the requirements to be a Water army (as well as the requirements to be Air), and thus would fall into the range of "Both an Air and a Water army."

At least, that's my current thinking.

Now, what about my 'Nids list. It had (to my recollection) 42 genestealers, a broodlord, 2 zoanthropes, 8 gargoyles, and about 98 spinegaunts (1501pts, if I recall). Basically, they just overran the opponent utterly, and he couldn't possibly kill them all. Most opponents simply wouldn't have enough shots/CC attacks to take down that many warm bodies. So in that sense, it was an Earth army. True, most Earth armies are shooting-based, for reasons Silent outlined in his tactica. However, Silent makes a point of saying that as a general trend, not as a defining characteristic. However, I clearly needed to get into CC, and my strategy did involve "overwhelming" the enemy, which are both very Fire-y tactics. So how do we categorize this army? Is it an Earth army, a Fire army, a little of both, or a full hybridization?



Sorry for throwing even more theory at you guys, but this has been on my mind recently, and I figured I should get these ideas down before I forget them.
New Year's Resolution 2007: Keep track of my wins and losses. (note: only 1 vs. 1 games counted)

-Chaos (32/6/7) -Space Marines (3/0/0) -Necrons (4/1/0) -Tyranids (17/2/1) -Inquisition (67/13/13)
Total: (123/22/21) W/L/D


#29
Silent Requiem

Silent Requiem

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 478 posts
I'm back for a bit, so will add some comments to reap participation marks. :D

I am intrigued by the attempt to find links between the elements. Perhaps it would be helpful to consider the control/beatdown angle? Fire and Earth seem to have occupying the beatdown position as one of their goals, though arguably it is more critical to Fire. Water and Air both prefer the control position, though Water is fairly insouciant on the point.

Perhaps a hiearchy of beatdown: Fire - Earth - Water - Air?

Regarding your claim that all Water armies must prefer shooting to an extent: I concur. I have recently begun playing World of Warcraft again, and have tried to apply the principles we have discussed to WoW. What became clear to me (amoung other things) is that the shooting/assault distinction is an artifice of the 40k rules set.

In 40k, once in combat the only way out is to win, and in the mean time you give up most of your other options, options Water players love dearly. As such, Water players enter assault only when they can keep it short and sweet, which would seem to open up the possiblility of a Tau Water army, seeing as assault is only one of many options, and it is options which truely seems to define a Water army, rather than performance in a given phase.

The lack of distinction between Air and Water is bothering, to an extent, though there have been some fantastic posts from all sides. Perhaps the distinction is that Air aims to create local superiority, whereas Water simply takes advantage of oportunities that arise. As I type I realise that I am still not satisfied with this distinction.

When you talk about points values, I think it would be better to talk about points per square inch, as it is table saturation that really makes the difference. Ie, a points value that favours Fire on a 4'x4' table, may not on a 6'x4', etc.

I hope to post more later, but now I have to run.

-Silent Requiem

Edited by Silent Requiem, 11 April 2007 - 11:52 AM.

QUOTE
About my list; it is weak. But it fits me, and that counts for a lot more than any amount of mathammer.


Since 5th edition: 3 wins, no draws, no losses.

#30
ArmouredWing

ArmouredWing

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 1,679 posts

I'm going to Chicago on Octuber (8th to 14th) and I would like to visit the Battle Bunker there. I think Wisconsin is not very far from chicago, doesn't it? ;)

Hmm. Remind me when the dates arrive. Chicago ain't too difficult for me to reach. :D


I will don't worry!!! ;)

Anyway, I'm making the summary for reports with my army of SoB. I would say it maybe be a Fire Army but I'm trying to apply Water techings. I hope to post at least one of them todoy ot tomorrow.


I've been very interested by these posts and as a SoB player it's helped define how I should be playing my sisters a little more clearly.
Wolf's bane's comments about his SoB force being a fire army are pretty accurate as I've come to realise. The fact that the Sisters rely on the cleansing flame may be pure coincidence but take into account the need to get into medium - close range to play them means your best bet is to move fast and decisively across the table, fire element tactics by silent requiem's definition.
"Suicide!" may be the cry from many WH players considering the lower T and S of the trusty sisters but taking into account the available acts of faith this isn't the case. Depending on what force you are facing should determine which acts of faith should be used during the battle and even the timing of these AoF should be decided before you've rolled the first die of the game.
This being the case I think that the sisters as a pure strain army are most effective when playing to the rules of fire, I'm sure many will disagree with my take on this but I believe their potential speed (Seraphim, Dominions, Mounted SoB, Mounted SoB/Retributers/Celestians, PE's, Arco's) combined with their standard armour Sv and the weight of fire a unit can muster all points to Fire.

#31
BaronTuman

BaronTuman

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 703 posts
I agree that the way that most WH players use their sisters is definitely a Fire-Based, and I'm adding enough sisters and rhinos to do the same.

OTOH, I've been trying to decide what my current setup is. It's somewhere between Water and Earth.

Click here to see my list

I say that it's Earth-like, because with 7 faith points, the sisters themselves are very hard to kill, either in assault or in shooting. All the vehicles make it difficult to kill them all, and well, squads of 10 guardsmen are almost the definition of Earth units. Even the Arcos are very difficult to kill.

OTOH, my entire army moves, and most of it can move and shoot at the same time. Even the Armored fist units can move and shoot from their Chimera if necessary. Every unit can hold it's own in combat, even the Guardsmen with an unmodified Ld 10. I've noticed that I really can't formulate a plan with this army until I see how the enemy is setting up, but once that process begins the plan unfolds precisely with every placement.

I'm thinking that the Callidus and "word in your ear" is a VERY Water-like. Firstly, because it not only reacts to, but changes the enemies plan, but also because when she comes in, it's very opportunistic.

For those who haven't heard me rant, it's a very effective army list for me, and I enjoy it a lot because it's very balanced. There's no single list that makes me cringe, nor any list that I know I'll walk over either. Really it all boils down to how well the game is is played, and that seems another hallmark of a water list.

So, what do you think? Water? Earth? Both?
My Templars Gallery
My Sisters Gallery

Anything worth doing is worth over-doing!

#32
ArmouredWing

ArmouredWing

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 1,679 posts
2 observations Baron, the first is you might want to edit out the pts costs and rules as it's a bit of a no-no where as copyright is concerned. A genuine mistake I know but it is frowned upon.

As for the army list it's a good solid list but as for elemental it is confusing. Is it Water? Is it Earth? I'd say it's a pretty even mix of both and thus could be played either or both ways during a battle.
If you're aiming for fire it's a fair way off.
I've been using a Seraphim heavy 'fire' list for a number of months now, 1500pts and here's, roughly mind, what I'm planning on fielding for my next battle against Tau.

Canoness+ Jump pack, Cloack of St A, Plasma Pistol, Power weapon, Litanies of Faith.

Battle sister Squad X 2.
10 Sisters+ Vet Supe, Hvy Flamer, Melta, Imagifier, Rhino+ Smoke.

Seraphim Squads Alpha & Beta (2 squads).
10 Seraphim+ Vet Supe, hand flamer X1, inferno pistol X1.

Seraphim Squad Delta.
5 Seraphim+ hand flamers X2.

I think this leaves me with approx 150 - 250pts to play with. I'm currently looking at an Inquisitor + plasma cannon servitor & an eversor assassin to finish my list off. any left over points will go on some HB servitors for the =][=.

Very specialised I know but fast moving and, most importantly, fun to play.

#33
Aidoneus

Aidoneus

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 4,214 posts

When you talk about points values, I think it would be better to talk about points per square inch, as it is table saturation that really makes the difference. Ie, a points value that favours Fire on a 4'x4' table, may not on a 6'x4', etc.

Right. That's kinda what I meant by saying larger boards change what I had to say. I mostly play on the standard 4'x6' board. That's 24 square feet. So when I said Water is best at 1000-2000pts, I meant 41.7 to 83.4 pts per squad foot. That's about 1850 to 3750pts on a 5'x9' ping-pong table, or about 650 to 1350pts on a 4'x4' board.

I am intrigued by the attempt to find links between the elements. Perhaps it would be helpful to consider the control/beatdown angle? Fire and Earth seem to have occupying the beatdown position as one of their goals, though arguably it is more critical to Fire. Water and Air both prefer the control position, though Water is fairly insouciant on the point.

Perhaps a hiearchy of beatdown: Fire - Earth - Water - Air?

Interesting, but not always accurrate. As you've pointed out before, a CC-oriented Air army would play the role of Beatdown against a Water army.

In 40k, once in combat the only way out is to win, and in the mean time you give up most of your other options, options Water players love dearly. As such, Water players enter assault only when they can keep it short and sweet, which would seem to open up the possiblility of a Tau Water army, seeing as assault is only one of many options, and it is options which truely seems to define a Water army, rather than performance in a given phase.

This is interesting. I agree that the options, and the accompanying ability to play reactively, are the core of what makes an army Water. The other aspects of a Water army would then come from this. i.e. The relatively equal amounts of shooting and CC are necessary to give you tactical options, as is a certain degree of mobility, etc...

Fire and Earth are two sides of the same coin; they both need very few options, and instead rely on their inherent strengths to win games. Fire relies on its ability to destroy the enemy, and Earth relies on its ability to not be destroyed by the enemy. All specific characteristics of those two elements come necessarily from those core aspects. i.e. Fire's (general) predilection for CC comes from its desire to destroy the enemy (2 assault phase for every 1 shooting phase), whereas Earth's (general) predilection for shooting comes from the exact same reason.

The lack of distinction between Air and Water is bothering, to an extent, though there have been some fantastic posts from all sides. Perhaps the distinction is that Air aims to create local superiority, whereas Water simply takes advantage of oportunities that arise. As I type I realise that I am still not satisfied with this distinction.

Agreed. A very troubling problem. What is boils down to, I think, is a lack of distinct core characteristic of Air armies. It can't be a desire to overpower the enemy, even in just one location, because that's a Fire characteristic. Saying "local superiority" isn't good enough, because a Fire army can just as easily try to create local superiority. Making that distinction is just limiting Fire unecessarily. And it can't be speed, because that is a method, not a [/i]goal[/i] in and of itself. Water and Fire armies can be fast as methods for accomplishing their goals. And those are really the only two characteristics we've discussed for Air, so I'm not sure what else there could be.

It seems to me that what we have, up until now, talked about as "Air" could be broken up into either Fire or Water armies. There's really no part of Air that could be re-catagorized as Earth, simply because Earth cannot afford to spend points on mobility instead of resilience.

If we think of it like that, it throws a whole different light on the relationships between the elements. I don't really have time to do a thorough analysis of those relationships, so I'll leave it to y'all to think about that.

For now, what do people think of the problem of defining Air? Is it really deserving of its status as a separate element, or should it be absorbed, so-to-speak, by Water and Fire?

Edited by Aidoneus, 11 April 2007 - 04:04 PM.

New Year's Resolution 2007: Keep track of my wins and losses. (note: only 1 vs. 1 games counted)

-Chaos (32/6/7) -Space Marines (3/0/0) -Necrons (4/1/0) -Tyranids (17/2/1) -Inquisition (67/13/13)
Total: (123/22/21) W/L/D


#34
BaronTuman

BaronTuman

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 703 posts

2 observations Baron, the first is you might want to edit out the pts costs and rules as it's a bit of a no-no where as copyright is concerned. A genuine mistake I know but it is frowned upon.

This is hosted on my own site. If GW wants to complain they can only complain to me.

As for the army list it's a good solid list but as for elemental it is confusing. Is it Water? Is it Earth? I'd say it's a pretty even mix of both and thus could be played either or both ways during a battle.

That's kind of what I was thinking too.

If you're aiming for fire it's a fair way off.

Not aiming for Fire in the slightest.

Part of putting the list off-site and not in-thread is that I don't want to distract from the subject of other lists and water tactics.
My Templars Gallery
My Sisters Gallery

Anything worth doing is worth over-doing!

#35
BaronTuman

BaronTuman

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 703 posts
About the whole Air vs Water issue, I think that it seems more logical to seperate Air as shooting and Fire as Assault. I know this has been previously nixed but I think everyone is finally seeing the problem with it. How's this for a working definition.

Air = Speed and shooting
Fire = Speed and assault and/or short range shooting
Earth =Slow and shooting/assault
Water = Mobility (not speed) plus shooting and assault


Here are some example armies;

Fire
Eldar w/ Banshees, Harlequins, Scorpions in transports
Rhino Rush Sisters or Black Templars
Genestealer & Guant armies

Air
Eldar Viper, Jetbike and Falcon armies
Mech Tau armies
Ork all buggy armies

Earth
IG armies in general
Ork armies
Iron Warriors

I think that even further, that what is being described as "water" is probably actually the center between shooting/assault speed/slow, however "origin" armies isn't nearly as "romantic" sounding as "water warrior".

That would then split Ork armies into "water" armies.

It would then all make much more logical sense, but we'd lose the romantic "water" definition so I doubt that anybody would really buy into it.
My Templars Gallery
My Sisters Gallery

Anything worth doing is worth over-doing!

#36
Aidoneus

Aidoneus

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 4,214 posts
I don't really think of it as a matter of shootiness vs. assaultiness. There have been other methods of categorizing armies along those lines, and none of them interest me much. The problem with them is that they deal with army composition, not playstyle. That's all well and good for beginners, or for people who like their army to play the same every game, more or less regardless of scenario or opponent. However, I (and Silent and Number6 and others) prefer to view armies from a playstyle standpoint. This allows us to see the difference between, say, an offensive shooty list (Lysanderwing springs to mind) and a defensive shooty list (Iron Warriors or IG). It also allows for the reactionary, fluid, always-changing playstyle that Silent calls "Water": an concept completely alien to more traditional shoot vs. charge categorizing systems. It is that last point, more than any other, that really interests me about the elemental system.

So I hesitate to revert to defining the elements via levels of mobility vs. stasis and/or shootiness vs. assaultiness. I think it would be closer to Silent's original intent to categorize them this way:

Fire: Seeks to assert its own offensive method of gameplay over such factors as scenario or opponent's army/tactics.

Earth: Seeks to assert its own defensive method of gameplay over such factors as scenario or opponent's army/tactics.

Water: Uses its flexibility to deny the enemy its method of gameplay, and to focus on the scenario.

As I've said before, I find it difficult to distill "Air" down into such a fundamental definition. Unless someone else can, I'm going to assume it won't work.


Here's a nifty new idea! Let's consider only those three elements above. Fire and Earth have a lot in common, except that one is offensive and one defensive. At first this would lead us to assume that they're somehow more like each other than like Water. However, what if that isn't the case? What if they are, in fact, opposites? Perhaps these three elements are on a spectrum from offensive to defensive, looking something like this:

Fire . . . Water . . . Earth

Water then would occupy the central position, or "origin" as some people have called it already. It specializes neither in offense or defense, and is therefore not bound to one method of gameplay; it is that very lack of specialization that allows it to be as flexible as it is. Fire and Earth both specialize (one in offense, the other in defense), and that specialization forces those elements into a fixed and rigid method of gameplay.

I actually really like that continuum. It seems to explain things very well. How do you all feel about it? I don't mean to completely hijack and re-work your system Silent, so I really would be interested to hear if you like this line of thought or not.

Edited by Aidoneus, 11 April 2007 - 06:54 PM.

New Year's Resolution 2007: Keep track of my wins and losses. (note: only 1 vs. 1 games counted)

-Chaos (32/6/7) -Space Marines (3/0/0) -Necrons (4/1/0) -Tyranids (17/2/1) -Inquisition (67/13/13)
Total: (123/22/21) W/L/D


#37
BaronTuman

BaronTuman

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 703 posts

Fire: Seeks to assert its own offensive method of gameplay over such factors as scenario or opponent's army/tactics.
Earth: Seeks to assert its own defensive method of gameplay over such factors as scenario or opponent's army/tactics.
Water: Uses its flexibility to deny the enemy its method of gameplay, and to focus on the scenario.

As I've said before, I find it difficult to distill "Air" down into such a fundamental definition. Unless someone else can, I'm going to assume it won't work.

Here's a nifty new idea! Let's consider only those three elements above.

You see, this is where I think the whole paradigm breaks down. What you are describing here is not so much a square (and certainly not a cube) but instead a LINE. Perhaps you're not following the SR's definition nearly as close as you think you are?

Fire . . . Water . . . Earth


That's hardly an inspiring definition.

I don't really think of it as a matter of shootiness vs. assaultiness. There have been other methods of categorizing armies along those lines, and none of them interest me much. The problem with them is that they deal with army composition, not playstyle.

But the two go hand-in-hand together. If you try to play a fire army list with an earth playstyle, you're not going to like the results. I would put forth that in any given situation, a given army has an optimum playstyle, and both the army and the playstyle need to match.

That's all well and good for beginners, or for people who like their army to play the same every game, more or less regardless of scenario or opponent. However, I (and Silent and Number6 and others) prefer to view armies from a playstyle standpoint. This allows us to see the difference between, say, an offensive shooty list (Lysanderwing springs to mind) and a defensive shooty list (Iron Warriors or IG).

And yet, by my definition, those armies are quite easily defined. Lysanderwing = fire. IG or Iron Warriors = Earth. It's more about range than it is assaulty or shooty. Sisters in a Rhinos, with Meltas and Flamers are very "shooty" but most definitely a Fire unit, even though in general you don't ever want to get them into HtH.

I can also clearly define "Air" units.

Fire warriors in a Devilfish are "fire" units, where a HammerHead is definitely an "Air" unit. (Gee imagine that!! :lol:
OTOH, Fire warriors hunkered down into cover can be an Earth unit with long range (not that anyone does anymore).

I therefore say that if you can't clearly define all four elements, then your definitions are flawed, or at the very least, the paradigm is flawed. If you're defining a line, the a simple numerical number can suffice. If you're defining "styles" then you need at least two axis, and it's completely illogical to leave a full 1/4 of the grid unaccounted for and undefined.

Here's my boast....

I can clearly define all four elements, and claim that what SR is calling "water" is not actually "water", but instead is an army and playstyle based around the "origin" instead of in one (or two) of the quadrants.
My Templars Gallery
My Sisters Gallery

Anything worth doing is worth over-doing!

#38
Aidoneus

Aidoneus

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 4,214 posts

Sisters in a Rhinos, with Meltas and Flamers are very "shooty" but most definitely a Fire unit, even though in general you don't ever want to get them into HtH.

Thus, a problem with your definitions. Your shooty=earth vs. assaulty=fire breaks down with Sisters or Lysanderwing. Frankly, three of your elemental definitions include both "shooting" and "assault." That doesn't help. All you've done is define them so broadly anything can be said to fit. Under your definitions, a squad of deep-striking terminators can be said to be Fire, Water, and Air. That doesn't help.

Under my system, there are no such ambiguities. Either something is decidedly offensive, decidedly defensive, or non-specialized and equally capable of both. If something is somewhat capable of both offense or defense, but it prefers one over the other, it can easily be said to fit into the continuum somewhere between Water and one of the two extremes. No overlap, no ambiguity.

I therefore say that if you can't clearly define all four elements, then your definitions are flawed, or at the very least, the paradigm is flawed. If you're defining a line, the a simple numerical number can suffice. If you're defining "styles" then you need at least two axis, and it's completely illogical to leave a full 1/4 of the grid unaccounted for and undefined.

I have said from the beginning that "Air" was not clearly different from the other elements. The fact that I have explored the nature of the elements to the point that I can say exactly why that is the case doesn't mean my system is flawed, it means the original breakdown was. Given that Silent meant his original breakdown not as a complete system, but rather as a simple way of saying what his army was not, and also given that he has recently expressed doubt similar to mine about the distinctiveness of "Air", I don't think it's too extreme a claim to say that the original definitions might not have been water-tight (forgive the pun).

And I don't see why we can't be expressing these things as a line. The thought that we needed to plot the elements on any sort of chart didn't come until some ways into the discussion; it certainly wasn't part of Silent's original tactica. Why is the linear contiuum any less apt than a 2 or 3 dimensional graph?

Also, you claim that your defintions fall nicely into a 2-dimensional chart. How is that? Three of your definitions mention good movement abilities (2 say "speed", one "mobility", but essentially they all have good movement). And three of your categories also include both shooting and assault. Correct me if I'm wrong, but you can't have 3 quadrants in a 2-dimensional graph sharing the same qualities. It just doesn't work that way. Thus, while my definitions fall neatly onto a linear continuum, yours seem not to fall neatly onto any sort of graphic representation.

Here's my boast....

I can clearly define all four elements, and claim that what SR is calling "water" is not actually "water", but instead is an army and playstyle based around the "origin" instead of in one (or two) of the quadrants.

I argue that you can't. Yes, your definitions encompass any armies that are obviously under the appropriate categories, but they also encompass other armies that aren't. What I mean is, almost any given army falls under more than one of your elemental definitions.

Here's my boast....

I can clearly define any of the three elements, with not overlap or ambiguities. I do so not by reverting to a system of "shootiness" vs. "assaultiness," which Silent has repeatedly said was not his intent. My definitions are essentially very close to Silent's definitions, albeit distilled into their core aspects.
New Year's Resolution 2007: Keep track of my wins and losses. (note: only 1 vs. 1 games counted)

-Chaos (32/6/7) -Space Marines (3/0/0) -Necrons (4/1/0) -Tyranids (17/2/1) -Inquisition (67/13/13)
Total: (123/22/21) W/L/D


#39
Silent Requiem

Silent Requiem

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 478 posts
My first reaction to the 3 part model was self doubt. Did I in fact over complicate things? Did I fall prey to the 3 phases paradigm? Did I create a 4th element just to satisfy my western view of the world?

While I feel that you can indeed describe playstyle in a linear fashion, I am still convinced that the 3rd axis is necessary to a deeper understanding, even if I can't define that 3rd axis precisely (yet).

As to the SOB question, overlap is inevitable. All units come with resilience (toughness and armour save) and killing power (strength and weapon skill) and mobility (movement and charge). Often, however, one (or more) of these characteristics stands out from the others. SOB are a complex and versatile force. If I had to generalise, I would call them Fire, BUT, their acts of faith are so flexible that I can easily see them played as Earth. In fact, the same army could be played different ways, just by changing how aggressively/defensively faith is used. While I would not put this level of flexibility as high as a full Water army (faith is limited, and it's effectiveness dictated by unit size, which after army construction is largely beyond your control), it does make the army very good at switching gears when it needs to.

-Silent Requiem
QUOTE
About my list; it is weak. But it fits me, and that counts for a lot more than any amount of mathammer.


Since 5th edition: 3 wins, no draws, no losses.

#40
number6

number6

    ++ SCÆNICUS EXTUNDO ++

  • ++ MODERATI CEDO ++
  • 3,504 posts

Regarding your claim that all Water armies must prefer shooting to an extent: I concur. I have recently begun playing World of Warcraft again, and have tried to apply the principles we have discussed to WoW. What became clear to me (amoung other things) is that the shooting/assault distinction is an artifice of the 40k rules set.

Artifice or not, is is a distinction that I believe does truly exist, and must be accounted for. As the implications for participating either at range or in close combat are very different, and the unit capabilities for each kind of combat are clearly delineated in every unit's rules profile, and in the game system itself, I don't think we can dismiss it. In fact, I think it's impossible to avoid categorizing, analyzing, and tactically using our units in the game without assessing unit capabilities along these (and other) lines of distinction.

In 40k, once in combat the only way out is to win, and in the mean time you give up most of your other options, options Water players love dearly. As such, Water players enter assault only when they can keep it short and sweet, which would seem to open up the possiblility of a Tau Water army, seeing as assault is only one of many options, and it is options which truely seems to define a Water army, rather than performance in a given phase.

I disagree somewhat. Having options is not really the defining characteristic of a Water army. Having the confidence and the capability to exercise differing options -- namely, choosing some combination of moving, shooting, and/or assaulting -- that is what distinguishes Water armies and units from other elements. Grey Knights are perfect examples because they are so obviously capable of doing all three, in any combination, at any given time during the game. The skill required by the general directing the GKs -- any Water unit, actually -- is to correctly exercise the proper combination of options at the proper time. Water units and armies don't have prefab tactical choices built into the list or tactics. Such choices are made at game time, and may even change multiple times throughout the course of a single game.

By this reasoning, your example Tau can almost never be a Water army. Yes, your typical Tau army is very shooty, and so the option to assault is nearly always available. But the Tau's assault capability is -- on average -- very weak, especially when compared with most other 40K units and army. So while the option to assault might usually be available, it will almost never be a wise choice. As I've noted earlier, this is the distinguising factor between Air and Water. Air units/armies do not actually have the ability to truly choose among all three core capabilities (moving, shooting, assaulting) at any point in the game. No matter what the opponent is or what the game objectives are, your typical Tau (Air) army is only ever going to move and/or shoot. It will almost never include assaults into that tactical mix. It's a suboptimal choice; the units are not geared to be truly effective in the close combat sphere, and so "assaulting" is not, truly, an option that is on the table. Air units and armies do have prefab tactical choices built into the list and tactics. Such choices that do not ever change, not between games nor in-game.

Personally, I find this distintion extremely compelling, and a reason to continue differentiating between Air and Water (and the other elements, too, obviously).

Fire: Seeks to assert its own offensive method of gameplay over such factors as scenario or opponent's army/tactics.

Earth: Seeks to assert its own defensive method of gameplay over such factors as scenario or opponent's army/tactics.

Water: Uses its flexibility to deny the enemy its method of gameplay, and to focus on the scenario.

As I've said before, I find it difficult to distill "Air" down into such a fundamental definition. Unless someone else can, I'm going to assume it won't work.

In light of what I just wrote, and keeping in mind that one of the key defining characteristics of Air armies is their ability/need to control line of sight thanks to their superior speed, how about...

Air: Seeks to assert its own offensive method of gameplay while avoiding the enemy's method of gameplay.

Air has a specific offensive methodology which it must employ and it doesn't have Water's flexibility to truly "deny" anybody anything. The best it can do is get out of the way.

Fire warriors in a Devilfish are "fire" units, where a HammerHead is definitely an "Air" unit. (Gee imagine that!!)

Mounted fire warriors are Air units. Can you ever use a Fire Warrior unit to overwhelm an enemy unit? I'd say not. They're no more a Fire unit than most units that get within rapid fire range of a target. There's a reason most Fire units are assaulty and not shooty: because there are two assault phases in a turn whereas there is only one shooting phase. An exception would be a mounted Sisters of Battle squad boosted by Divine Guidance. That's a shooty Fire unit. It is capable of overwhelming enemy units with it's power, and it also matches with Aidoneus's Fire aphorism above, too.

OTOH, Fire warriors hunkered down into cover can be an Earth unit with long range (not that anyone does anymore).

Static fire warriors aren't really Earthy, either, as they don't have any real resilience. Their toughness and armour save are merely average, and they're so pricey that they can't measure reslience by body count, either. I grant you that "Earth" is the best Elemental identifier for unmounted, static Tau units, but there's a reason that few Tau players use many such units nowadays. :wink: They're really better off mounted in Devilfish. I know I no longer face any static Tau lists. Hybrid lists, yes, but static Tau is a dinosaur.
RIP Warhammer 40,000: 21 Sep 1998 - 24 May 2014

#41
BaronTuman

BaronTuman

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 703 posts

Sisters in a Rhinos, with Meltas and Flamers are very "shooty" but most definitely a Fire unit, even though in general you don't ever want to get them into HtH.

Thus, a problem with your definitions. Your shooty=earth vs. assaulty=fire breaks down with Sisters or Lysanderwing.

You seem to keep overlooking the fact that I keep saying it's not merely assault=fire. I'll put it more clearly so that you'll be less confused and have less to argue about. Fire = short range damage. I'll even go one more step further in it's definition. A models fire attribute is defined by it's damage potential within 12" in 40K. Models with bolters then by definition have a large "fire" component.

Frankly, three of your elemental definitions include both "shooting" and "assault." That doesn't help. All you've done is define them so broadly anything can be said to fit. Under your definitions, a squad of deep-striking terminators can be said to be Fire, Water, and Air. That doesn't help.

Ah, but it does, and you don't seem to see the signifigance. Let's discuss terminators specifically.
First, would you want to face an army in 40K made entirely of terminators with Assault Cannons???? No? This is because it's a MODEL which lies very near the origin. This would be the ultimate in what SR was calling a "water" army.

Under my system, there are no such ambiguities. Either something is decidedly offensive, decidedly defensive, or non-specialized and equally capable of both. If something is somewhat capable of both offense or defense, but it prefers one over the other, it can easily be said to fit into the continuum somewhere between Water and one of the two extremes. No overlap, no ambiguity.

And you add absolutely no benefit to adding ambiguous language like "Earth or Fire" either, when offensive and defensive are such easily defined words. Certainly there is no reason at all to include a third ambiguous term like "Water' to mean not dedicated to offense or defence.

Given that Silent meant his original breakdown not as a complete system, but rather as a simple way of saying what his army was not, and also given that he has recently expressed doubt similar to mine about the distinctiveness of "Air", I don't think it's too extreme a claim to say that the original definitions might not have been water-tight (forgive the pun).

And yet, definitions can be refined and improved. He's using terminology that has been used for centuries is quite valid in regards to warfare, but it should be used properly if he wants people to understand him. He's also included both "assault" vs "shooting" as well as mobility issues. They are each important to what his army is "not".

Also, you claim that your defintions fall nicely into a 2-dimensional chart. How is that? Three of your definitions mention good movement abilities (2 say "speed", one "mobility", but essentially they all have good movement).

Honestly, only half the chart should be mobile, at the time I was trying to fit SR's version of water, but it really doesn't work that way. Water is NOT the correct term, as it's polar opposite is fire, just as earth's polar opposite is air.

So to restate it more clearly in exact 40K terms;

Fire = tendency for dealing damage within 12" with high mobility
Air = tendency for dealing damage over 12" with high mobility
Earth = tendency for dealing damage over 12" with low mobility
Water = tendency for dealing damage within 12" with low mobility.

This can be done on a model by model basis, unit by unit basis, army wide basis, or as playstyle.

Any of which may be classified in a cartesian coordinate along 2 axes. The more models you add
to the equation, the more subjective the coordinate becomes. While in theory it might be even more accurate to give it 4 "attributes" but that would be over-complicating things.

Most space marine infantry models have a coordinate very close to (0,0). Assault squads are more "Air" units, while Assault Terminators are very
much Earth units.

SR very clearly IMO is advocating taking UNITS which are very close to the origin, which gives them some mobility, close combat capability, and some longer range capability.

Here's my boast....

I can clearly define all four elements, and claim that what SR is calling "water" is not actually "water", but instead is an army and playstyle based around the "origin" instead of in one (or two) of the quadrants.

I argue that you can't. Yes, your definitions encompass any armies that are obviously under the appropriate categories, but they also encompass other armies that aren't. What I mean is, almost any given army falls under more than one of your elemental definitions.

Here's my boast....

I can clearly define any of the three elements, with not overlap or ambiguities. I do so not by reverting to a system of "shootiness" vs. "assaultiness," which Silent has repeatedly said was not his intent. My definitions are essentially very close to Silent's definitions, albeit distilled into their core aspects.

Hardly a boast at all, "I can name that tune in 8 notes...." "Oh yeah, I can name that tune in 58 notes!" :evil:

Also, I said that I could clearly define the ELEMENTS, not every model in the 40K universe much less every army. Units, armies and in particular play styles will only have tendencies. The best players match their tendencies with their army list, and a well played "quadrant" (earth, air, water, or fire) army will beat an "origin" (previously called "water") army played by an inferior opponent. However, a "quadrant" army has problems with it's polar opposite.

Of course you'd probably still need a third axis to determine resiliance or numerical advantages, because otherwise "water" armies are unwinnable (read Orks with no shooting), but in theory that's taken care of by the points costs of the models within the game and can be ignored.

Finally, and to clarify, I believe that unless you can define all four elements, the paradigm is flawed and needs have the terminology changed. I believe that I've very clearly followed what SR has been trying to say, but in more clear terms, even if it doesn't have the romantic sound of "Water Warrior".
My Templars Gallery
My Sisters Gallery

Anything worth doing is worth over-doing!

#42
BaronTuman

BaronTuman

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 703 posts

Fire warriors in a Devilfish are "fire" units, where a HammerHead is definitely an "Air" unit. (Gee imagine that!!)

Mounted fire warriors are Air units. Can you ever use a Fire Warrior unit to overwhelm an enemy unit? I'd say not.

Absolutely! Ever seen what a unit of rapid firing Fire Warriors can to do a unit of Orks? It's also not necessarily the case that it has to be only one unit of FW's but it can (and should) be multiples. Multiple units of FW's can certainly deal enough damage to overwhelm virtually any other infantry unit.

They're no more a Fire unit than most units that get within rapid fire range of a target. There's a reason most Fire units are assaulty and not shooty: because there are two assault phases in a turn whereas there is only one shooting phase. An exception would be a mounted Sisters of Battle squad boosted by Divine Guidance. That's a shooty Fire unit.

It's EXACTLY the same mechanism! Using a transport to get up close and personal, then roasting the enemy at short range! Then you hope that they don't get into combat with you and eliminate your shooting advantage.

I grant you that "Earth" is the best Elemental identifier for unmounted, static Tau units, but there's a reason that few Tau players use many such units nowadays. :evil: They're really better off mounted in Devilfish. I know I no longer face any static Tau lists. Hybrid lists, yes, but static Tau is a dinosaur.

I never said they were a "good" earth unit, just that how they are played and their options (ie with or without transport) can change their status! :(
My Templars Gallery
My Sisters Gallery

Anything worth doing is worth over-doing!

#43
Aidoneus

Aidoneus

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 4,214 posts

Frankly, three of your elemental definitions include both "shooting" and "assault." That doesn't help. All you've done is define them so broadly anything can be said to fit. Under your definitions, a squad of deep-striking terminators can be said to be Fire, Water, and Air. That doesn't help.

Ah, but it does, and you don't seem to see the signifigance. Let's discuss terminators specifically.
First, would you want to face an army in 40K made entirely of terminators with Assault Cannons???? No? This is because it's a MODEL which lies very near the origin. This would be the ultimate in what SR was calling a "water" army.

That's not what I meant. Under your "origin" theory, a unit composed of Earth, Fire, and Air aspects would equal a Water unit. However, under your original definitions the termies would have been Water, Fire, and Air, but not Earth. That doesn't square with the whole "origin" theory at all. However, since you have re-defined your elements, I'll disregard this point and talk more about your new definitions.

Under my system, there are no such ambiguities. Either something is decidedly offensive, decidedly defensive, or non-specialized and equally capable of both. If something is somewhat capable of both offense or defense, but it prefers one over the other, it can easily be said to fit into the continuum somewhere between Water and one of the two extremes. No overlap, no ambiguity.

And you add absolutely no benefit to adding ambiguous language like "Earth or Fire" either, when offensive and defensive are such easily defined words. Certainly there is no reason at all to include a third ambiguous term like "Water' to mean not dedicated to offense or defence.

Maybe not. The elemental names are really just titles given to different sorts of armies. We could just as easily call them Red, Blue, Yellow, and Green armies. Silent picked the elements because they somewhat match the playstyles of the army types they describe. That seems to me like a very good way of deciding on names for things, so I still use the elemental names. But you have to understand that the names are not the core issue here; the playstyles are.

And anyway, I don't see how putting the names on a continuum takes away from their distinctiveness any more than putting them on a graph would. In political thought there are two ways of determining political leanings. The first is a continuum going Radical, Liberal, Libertarian, Conservative, Reactionary. The second way is a graph with one axis representing level of economic control, and the other representing social control, and the four quadrants are Libertarian, Liberal, Conservative, and Authoratarian. Both are equally valid, and both clearly have several different distinct categories, despite measuring only one or two qualities.

Given that Silent meant his original breakdown not as a complete system, but rather as a simple way of saying what his army was not, and also given that he has recently expressed doubt similar to mine about the distinctiveness of "Air", I don't think it's too extreme a claim to say that the original definitions might not have been water-tight (forgive the pun).

And yet, definitions can be refined and improved. He's using terminology that has been used for centuries is quite valid in regards to warfare, but it should be used properly if he wants people to understand him. He's also included both "assault" vs "shooting" as well as mobility issues. They are each important to what his army is "not".

Not true. Go back and read his tactica. Water armies need mobility. They don't necessarily need speed, but they certainly can have it. Also, they need both shooting and CC. Earth needs resilience, not necessarily either shooty or CC (though usually shooty helps more with resilience). Fire needs overwhelming offensive power, not necessarily shooty or CC, and not necessarily speed, although it helps. Overall, the levels of shooty/CC or stasis/mobility don't define the elements. It's the playstyles that do. The CC/shooty and stasis/mobility just derive from the prefered playstyles. That was clearly Silent's intent, and it's clearly the core of his elemental system. If you change the focus from playstyle preferences to shooty/CC and stasis/mobility you're completely changing the core aspects of his system, and then it isn't any longer even the same system.

Also, you claim that your defintions fall nicely into a 2-dimensional chart. How is that? Three of your definitions mention good movement abilities (2 say "speed", one "mobility", but essentially they all have good movement).

Honestly, only half the chart should be mobile, at the time I was trying to fit SR's version of water, but it really doesn't work that way. Water is NOT the correct term, as it's polar opposite is fire, just as earth's polar opposite is air.

So to restate it more clearly in exact 40K terms;

Fire = tendency for dealing damage within 12" with high mobility
Air = tendency for dealing damage over 12" with high mobility
Earth = tendency for dealing damage over 12" with low mobility
Water = tendency for dealing damage within 12" with low mobility.

Again, I have to say that you have not captured Silent's elements adequately. Water, for one thing, is almost completely wrong. First, Silent has said from the beginning that Water needs to be mobile. They don't need to be fast, but they absolutely must be mobile. This is to ensure that they can keep all their tactical options open, and be able to best capitalize on whatever situation faces them. Also, they need to be effective at at least 18" range whilst on the move. Here's why: in order to keep yourself out of CC (it often is tactically advantageous to do so), you must be able to move and damage the enemy at greater than 12" (normal move/charge range for most units). If you can't do that, you're stuck deciding whether to move foward and cause damage but put yourself in a tactically disadvantageous position, or move back and not do either, which is a choice no Water general should ever have to make.

Air, as defined by Silent, needn't only be capable of dealing damage outside of 12". They can use their speed to move in close and completely overwhelm resistence with either short-range fire (special weapons and combi-bolters on spacies bikes, for example), or CC (winged 'Nids or daemonbomb, for example). Granted, I see these close-in, local superiority armies as just specialized Fire armies, but that's just me. The point is, if you accept Air as a fourth element, it wouldn't be defined the way you defined it.

Fire needen't deal damage within 12". Take Lysanderwing for example. Perfect example of a shooty Fire army. They all come on at once, making for a sudden application of overwhelming force. Textbook Fire. It's not Water because it has a pre-determined method of gameplay. It's not Air because once it's on the table it's not fast. And it's not Earth because the low model count makes it less resilient than most other armies. So it's Fire. And yet, everything is fully effective at 24" range (assuming you take assault cannons, not heavy flamers).

And while your description of Earth holds most of the time, counterexamples do exist. Take my uber-horde 'Nids list for example. With 151 models in a 1500pt list, it definitely has the resilience to survive longer than its enemies. To be sure, I spent pts not on offensive power, but on as many models as I could fit, so that I could out-survive anyone. However, rather than shooting at long range, I seek refuge in CC, where my terrible saves can do more good than against more ranged weapons with AP of 5 or lower.

Given that your system fails to correctly identify so many armies according to Silent's system, surely we must conclude that either your definitions are inadequate, or you've defined your own system entirely, and it deserves its own discussion, just not here.

Here's my boast....

I can clearly define all four elements, and claim that what SR is calling "water" is not actually "water", but instead is an army and playstyle based around the "origin" instead of in one (or two) of the quadrants.

I argue that you can't. Yes, your definitions encompass any armies that are obviously under the appropriate categories, but they also encompass other armies that aren't. What I mean is, almost any given army falls under more than one of your elemental definitions.

Here's my boast....

I can clearly define any of the three elements, with not overlap or ambiguities. I do so not by reverting to a system of "shootiness" vs. "assaultiness," which Silent has repeatedly said was not his intent. My definitions are essentially very close to Silent's definitions, albeit distilled into their core aspects.

Hardly a boast at all, "I can name that tune in 8 notes...." "Oh yeah, I can name that tune in 58 notes!" :teehee:

I won't pretend to understand what you mean by that. My definitions aren't any more complex than yours, they're just conercerned with different aspects of the armies.

Also, I said that I could clearly define the ELEMENTS, not every model in the 40K universe much less every army. Units, armies and in particular play styles will only have tendencies. The best players match their tendencies with their army list, and a well played "quadrant" (earth, air, water, or fire) army will beat an "origin" (previously called "water") army played by an inferior opponent. However, a "quadrant" army has problems with it's polar opposite.

If your system can't define units or armies, it hardly does us any good, now does it? I mean, the whole point of debates about game theory is that we should be able to come out with some greater understanding of the workings of the game system. If all you an do is define elements, but not units or armies, what does that give us? My system, or Silent's (upon which mine is based), can define any unit or army, if not as purely one element than as a combination of 2. Without such practical application, there's not much point to theoretical discussions like this.

Finally, and to clarify, I believe that unless you can define all four elements, the paradigm is flawed and needs have the terminology changed. I believe that I've very clearly followed what SR has been trying to say, but in more clear terms, even if it doesn't have the romantic sound of "Water Warrior".

You can't say that. Silent has said, time after time, that Water needs mobility; that Earth doesn't have to be shooty; that Fire needn't be close-range; that Air needn't be shooty; and a variety of other things your system categorically disregards. I'll grant you that I've changed things a fair amount by taking out one of the elements. But the remaining elements are still defined just as Silent defined them. And Silent himself has expressed doubts about whether Air should be a separate element, so that one change I made is not without some amount of credibility. And it was just one change, not a fundamental shift in the core focus of the entire system.


Maybe I'm wrong to disregard Air. I've been wrong before, and god knows I've changed my opinions about this elemental system plenty since I started paying attention to it a month or two ago. However, no one has yet given me a satisfactory explanation as to why Air can't just be absorbed by Water and Fire. Number6 came close by telling me why Air isn't just Water, but if we also allow the concept of "local superiority" to be absorbed by the more general "superiority" aspect of Fire, we're once again down to 3 elements. Of course, if anyone can show me what Air has to offer that can't be explained in terms of Water, Earth, or Fire, I'd be more than happy to reconsider my claims. I promise you, I'm not just pig-headed and stubborn. ;)

But even though I admit that my version may not be perfect (though I haven't yet seen any reason to question it), I can tell you, independently of my system entirely, that the system you have proposed simply isn't sufficient to encompass the ideas set forth by Silent Requiem. I've given you the reasons already, so I don't feel the need to go over them all again. But overall, Silent is very much concerned with playstyle and focus, not degree of speed or shooting vs. CC. If we want to maintain his system, even if we change it somewhat, we need to keep that core focus the same.
New Year's Resolution 2007: Keep track of my wins and losses. (note: only 1 vs. 1 games counted)

-Chaos (32/6/7) -Space Marines (3/0/0) -Necrons (4/1/0) -Tyranids (17/2/1) -Inquisition (67/13/13)
Total: (123/22/21) W/L/D


#44
Silent Requiem

Silent Requiem

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 478 posts

Air: Seeks to assert its own offensive method of gameplay while avoiding the enemy's method of gameplay.


This I really like. It's kind of what I was fumbling around in the dark for when I started talking about beatdown and control.

It should be noted, however, that this still leaves a blurred line between Water and Air, as some (not all, or even most) Air armies will have enough shooting/assault balance that being Water or Air depends soley on the playstyle employed (aggressive or defensive). That does not invalidate the distinction, though, as I mentioned in an above post that the same SOB army can flip between Earth and Fire based on the aggressive/defensive use of faith.

BaronTuman: While I'm not sure I agree with everything you're saying (not that that makes you wrong, mind you), it's really great to have your contributions! I hope continue to hear from you.

-Silent Requiem
QUOTE
About my list; it is weak. But it fits me, and that counts for a lot more than any amount of mathammer.


Since 5th edition: 3 wins, no draws, no losses.

#45
Aidoneus

Aidoneus

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 4,214 posts

Air: Seeks to assert its own offensive method of gameplay while avoiding the enemy's method of gameplay.

This I really like. It's kind of what I was fumbling around in the dark for when I started talking about beatdown and control.

Yeah, I forgot to comment about this. The problem is, a given army cannot focus on both avoiding the enemy and engaging the enemy. They can try to do both to a certain extent, but in the end they have to pick which is most important. For Water, avoiding is more important. For Earth and Fire, engaging is more important. For Air...

Any good army will of course try to avoid the enemy's method and assert their own. Any commander who doesn't do that is just plain stupid, or pig-headed, or both. The elemental distinctions only speak to the core focus of an army (or specific unit). Thus, the Earth or Fire army will try to avoid the enemy's method to the extent that they can do so without sacrificing their own method's effectiveness. Water, on the flip side, will try to engage the enemy (by whatever means is best at the time) to the extent that they can do so without letting the enemy engage them on its own terms.

So where does Air fit in then? When it comes right down to it, any given army will ultimately have to decide whether it wants to assert its own methods or avoid the enemy's. One or the other is going to have to take precedence. So any given "Air" army will ultimately have to decide whether it wants to...

A) Seek to assert its own offensive method of gameplay, or
B} Seek to avoid the enemy's method of gameplay

In case A, it's a type of Fire army, and in case B, it's a type of Water army. At any given moment, the Air army will be focusing on one of those two things more than the other. If it has to decide between moving in a straight line to engage the enemy by leaving cover, or curve to hide behind cover but not quite make it to engage the enemy, that's a choice that forces the "Air" army to either choose Fire or Water.

So I still don't think that is a sufficient solution to the problem.
New Year's Resolution 2007: Keep track of my wins and losses. (note: only 1 vs. 1 games counted)

-Chaos (32/6/7) -Space Marines (3/0/0) -Necrons (4/1/0) -Tyranids (17/2/1) -Inquisition (67/13/13)
Total: (123/22/21) W/L/D


#46
number6

number6

    ++ SCÆNICUS EXTUNDO ++

  • ++ MODERATI CEDO ++
  • 3,504 posts

Air: Seeks to assert its own offensive method of gameplay while avoiding the enemy's method of gameplay.

This I really like. It's kind of what I was fumbling around in the dark for when I started talking about beatdown and control.

Yeah, I forgot to comment about this. The problem is, a given army cannot focus on both avoiding the enemy and engaging the enemy. They can try to do both to a certain extent, but in the end they have to pick which is most important. For Water, avoiding is more important. For Earth and Fire, engaging is more important. For Air...

Any good army will of course try to avoid the enemy's method and assert their own. Any commander who doesn't do that is just plain stupid, or pig-headed, or both. The elemental distinctions only speak to the core focus of an army (or specific unit). Thus, the Earth or Fire army will try to avoid the enemy's method to the extent that they can do so without sacrificing their own method's effectiveness. Water, on the flip side, will try to engage the enemy (by whatever means is best at the time) to the extent that they can do so without letting the enemy engage them on its own terms.

So where does Air fit in then? When it comes right down to it, any given army will ultimately have to decide whether it wants to assert its own methods or avoid the enemy's. One or the other is going to have to take precedence. So any given "Air" army will ultimately have to decide whether it wants to...

A) Seek to assert its own offensive method of gameplay, or
B} Seek to avoid the enemy's method of gameplay

In case A, it's a type of Fire army, and in case B, it's a type of Water army. At any given moment, the Air army will be focusing on one of those two things more than the other. If it has to decide between moving in a straight line to engage the enemy by leaving cover, or curve to hide behind cover but not quite make it to engage the enemy, that's a choice that forces the "Air" army to either choose Fire or Water.

So I still don't think that is a sufficient solution to the problem.

The distinction that I believe exists is that Air is the only element upon which concepts A and B (as you labeled them above) are, almost totally, mutually exclusive. I didn't mean to imply that, of all the elements, only Air seeks to "avoid" the enemy; you are definitely correct that all competent commanders will do so. However, a Fire army that "avoids" is also going about the business of asserting itself. Same for Earth and Water armies. When an Air army "avoids" the enemy, it is literally hiding and has very little capability to maintain any kind of initiative. Unlike the other other elements, it cannot simultaneously "avoid" and "assert".

Whereas the other armies strive to build up their offensive capability -- either very suddenly or gradually over the course of an entire game -- an Air army can't necessarily do that. It isn't as overwhelming as Fire, nor as resilient as Earth, nor as flexible as Water. Therefore, it will (on "average", shall we say), sputter and spurt, ebb and flow. Certainly I've seen many mech Tau players do this kind of thing. An Air army will suddenly overwhelm a piece of boardspace, a piece of the opponent. But doing so leaves it inherently vulnerable. Even if it is successful at eliminating the desired target(s), it has to regather the assets employed for that elimination and start the process all over again.

I would argue that well-run Fire, Earth, and Water armies don't require that kind of repetetive start-up cost to get up and running and be effective because they can and should -- indeed, must -- continue to build that effectiveness over the course of the game. Setbacks will usually cost these elements the game. Setbacks for Air aren't anywhere near as fatal; they can usually recover quite nimbly and suddenly. In fact, Air, by its very operation, creates its own setbacks each time it correctly asserts its offensive methodology. What distinguishes Air from the other elements, therefore, is that it can usually get away with it because it is so very, very fast. That is why it is so key to destroy whatever it is that provides the Air player with that speed. Usually it is transports. Eliminate the transports, and the Air army is easy pickings because, when matched up directly with any other Elemental force, it is (relatively) deficient in every other meaningful aspect of gameplay.

+++++

On an earlier topic, I meant to say one brief thing with regards to your claim that Water armies be default favor shooting over assault. I don't totally disagree, as I believe that, against most opponents, that is true. However, I still maintain that the reason for that has more to do with the nature of most 40K armies that exist than because it is an actual a priori truism. I can think of at least one example, actually, where a Water army's choice should be to assault, not shoot: Necrons. I know when I play 'crons, I want to jump into CC as fast as is possible. Assault is actually the superior tactical option for almost every situation, and so shooting is merely done on the way in, only because I might as well. But assault is really where I want to be. The same could also be true for a typical Earthy IG army or a typical Airy mech Tau army, too.
RIP Warhammer 40,000: 21 Sep 1998 - 24 May 2014

#47
BaronTuman

BaronTuman

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 703 posts

BaronTuman: While I'm not sure I agree with everything you're saying (not that that makes you wrong, mind you), it's really great to have your contributions! I hope continue to hear from you.

Given that your system fails to correctly identify so many armies according to Silent's system, surely we must conclude that either your definitions are inadequate, or you've defined your own system entirely, and it deserves its own discussion, just not here.

Given the above two quotes, I'll ask you to resist implying that that my analysis does not belong on this thread. That being said, on to the corrections;

That's not what I meant. Under your "origin" theory, a unit composed of Earth, Fire, and Air aspects would equal a Water unit.

No, a unit composed of all four elements would equal an "origin" or (for a better word) "balanced" unit which Silent called a "water" unit. With 4 elements, you can define a unit not necessarily by what it has, but what it does NOT have.

However, under your original definitions the termies would have been Water, Fire, and Air, but not Earth. That doesn't square with the whole "origin" theory at all. However, since you have re-defined your elements, I'll disregard this point and talk more about your new definitions.

Again, you're wrong, and mostly because of your lack of understanding of the elements. If you read my definition of Earth, it's low mobility (after it shows up it's still only moving 6", yet the Assault Cannon can be effective at 24" range.

If you wanted a more precise definition of an Assault Terminator, it would be near the origin between Earth and Water. At this point, a diagram might be of use too;

F|A
-+-
E|W

So to be even more exact a Terminator with an Assault Cannon would be x=0, y=-1 (on a numeric scale yet to be determined).


And you add absolutely no benefit to adding ambiguous language like "Earth or Fire" either, when offensive and defensive are such easily defined words. Certainly there is no reason at all to include a third ambiguous term like "Water' to mean not dedicated to offense or defence.

Maybe not. The elemental names are really just titles given to different sorts of armies. We could just as easily call them Red, Blue, Yellow, and Green armies.

And as such, better words would be "offensive", "balanced" and "defensive". Not elements with one missing.

He's also included both "assault" vs "shooting" as well as mobility issues. They are each important to what his army is "not".

Not true. Go back and read his tactica.

Ok, I've read it, now your turn... :thanks:

The key to Silents "water" army (and ideally every unit in the army) is that it does not lack in either of the axes. Thus, it has to have mobility, longer ranged firepower on the move and decent assault capability. Thus if the enemy wants to assault, his "water" army prevents assult and shoots instead. If the enemy wants to shoot, then the water army uses terrain to deny that shooting and assaults if possible, etc.

This is an EXACT correlation to my "balanced" or "origin" unit, which does not lack in mobility, ranged or close in combat.

If you change the focus from playstyle preferences to shooty/CC and stasis/mobility you're completely changing the core aspects of his system, and then it isn't any longer even the same system.

I disagree. I'm refining his terms, as well as broadening the utility.

Again, I have to say that you have not captured Silent's elements adequately. Water, for one thing, is almost completely wrong.

Ah ha! And here, you've finally got something right! Water (as defined by Silent) absolutely is incorrect! However, for the most part he's dead on if you were to substitue the word "balanced" or "origin" in his original tactica! You see, it's not that his theories are wrong, just his terminology. After reading I found it very easy to articulate why I enjoy my WH army so much and why it's way more powerful than it looks on paper.

First, Silent has said from the beginning that Water needs to be mobile. They don't need to be fast, but they absolutely must be mobile. This is to ensure that they can keep all their tactical options open, and be able to best capitalize on whatever situation faces them.

Now, from my defition, I'd have to agree with what you just stated. Feral Orks and some Tyrannid armies are examples of water armies. They do not rely on speed and they only deal damage in short range. Do they need mobility? Absolutely yes! An army with zero mobility and low range will always lose. However, there are losing army styles out there and they can still be classified. However, because they are infantry (even with Fleet of Foot) they still are between below the origin.

Hey... Now we've got a more defined definition for the origin. Units which move less than 18" total (reliably) in the movement and assault phases are below the origin.

Also, they need to be effective at at least 18" range whilst on the move.

See effective is a completely different issue! The elements do not dictate whether a unit is effective or not, just how it plays. Spine Guants are pretty "ineffective" against virtually any unit, but given their cheap points costs they make a wonderful tarpit unit. Are they offensive or defensive according to your defintion? Would they be fire or air according to Silent? By my definition, they lay perfectly defined in fire.

Air, as defined by Silent, needn't only be capable of dealing damage outside of 12". They can use their speed to move in close and completely overwhelm resistence with either short-range fire (special weapons and combi-bolters on spacies bikes, for example), or CC (winged 'Nids or daemonbomb, for example). Granted, I see these close-in, local superiority armies as just specialized Fire armies, but that's just me. The point is, if you accept Air as a fourth element, it wouldn't be defined the way you defined it.

No, what you just defined was fire. I might add that you yourself as well as virtually everyone on this thread is having difficulty defining the difference between air and fire. Just simply by the symbology my distinction makes sense. For fire to hurt you, it has to touch you. Thus if you don't die in the fire, you can put it out. Air (or wind) is something generated from afar, and is cannot really be touched (and thus is long ranged). Probably not elequent, and could defintely be argued by being obtuse, but for those with an open mind the difference will be obvious.

Fire needen't deal damage within 12". Take Lysanderwing for example. Perfect example of a shooty Fire army. They all come on at once, making for a sudden application of overwhelming force. Textbook Fire.

Show me your textbook! If it's Silent's definition, I'm right here correcting it, and thus is not sufficient as a source.
I'd classify a Lysanderwing as very close to the origin but again, like I said with the terminator example, it's probably about (0,-1) or maybe (-0.5,-1) because the general range is only 24" without much longer than that. This is because after the deepstrike, it doesn't have much mobility. As such, it's definitely NOT a fire army, but instead more of an earth/water army. If you can run away from a Lysander army (after the deepstrike) and shoot it from more than 24" away (thus using range and mobility) you'll beat it. This perfectly describes the "polar opposite" army, as well as the "beatdown situation" that was described by Silent.

So, let's further re-define one of Silents cornerstone concepts. The "beatdown" is described by the polar opposite army described by the elements.

And to further prove this example, an "air-fire" army, fast with long range, so say (1,1) can be beaten if the Lysander wing "gets the beatdown" by deepstriking near the force. Thus, there is perfect semmetry between the "beatdown situation" and polar opposite armies!

And while your description of Earth holds most of the time, counterexamples do exist. Take my uber-horde 'Nids list for example. With 151 models in a 1500pt list, it definitely has the resilience to survive longer than its enemies.

Another example where you haven't actually understood my definitions. I'm making a few assumptions about your list based on your description, but the army you describe is a water army. It is not mobile (meaning not moving 12" reliably in a turn), and it's damage range is 12" or less. It's "beatdown" or polar opposite army would again be an air army that flies around you in circles, and denies you short ranged damage. An example would probably be an all buggy Kult of Speed army, and the inverse would be true too, assuming that you managed to get lots of genestealers into those buggies.

To be sure, I spent pts not on offensive power,

That right there proves that it's not an earth army.


Hardly a boast at all, "I can name that tune in 8 notes...." "Oh yeah, I can name that tune in 58 notes!" :whistlingW:

I won't pretend to understand what you mean by that. My definitions aren't any more complex than yours, they're just conercerned with different aspects of the armies.

I'll spell it out then. Defining an "offensive" vs "defensive" scale for armies is hardly a feat at all. Any noob can do that. Defining how an army plays is MUCH more complicated than that. You and others have difficulty defining "air" vs "fire" armies, and the reason is that relative ranges are being ignored.

Who in their right mind would try to define an army or playstyle without defining both range and mobility. They are both essential ELEMENTS to defining a model, unit, army or playstyle.

If your system can't define units or armies, it hardly does us any good, now does it? I mean, the whole point of debates about game theory is that we should be able to come out with some greater understanding of the workings of the game system. If all you an do is define elements, but not units or armies, what does that give us?

It can define units armies and playstyles. But not CLEARLY define all units and armies because some units are so close to the origin that they can be played in different styles. So, I guess I'll have to re-cant and say that I COULD define every unit or army, in relation to the origin, and thus their tendencies toward a certain element.

My system, or Silent's (upon which mine is based), can define any unit or army, if not as purely one element than as a combination of 2. Without such practical application, there's not much point to theoretical discussions like this.

And here is where simple mathmatical proof comes in. If you have 2 elements combined, that is an GRID giving 2x2 or 4 results, not 3.
My Templars Gallery
My Sisters Gallery

Anything worth doing is worth over-doing!

#48
BaronTuman

BaronTuman

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 703 posts

But overall, Silent is very much concerned with playstyle and focus, not degree of speed or shooting vs. CC. If we want to maintain his system, even if we change it somewhat, we need to keep that core focus the same.


Ok, so here's a challenge to everybodies system. Here are 4 common army archetypes. Using the elements, define each archetype;

1) Ork KOS all buggy army (big shootas and rokkit launchas) (or the old 18 vyper eldar army)

2) Ork madboyz horde

3) Imperial Guard gunline

4) Khorne bikes & Daemon Bombs

Each and every one of these army achetypes has a dramatically different playstyle and lumping any two of them is not allowed.

Now, once you've defined the armies using all 4 elements give two defining properties for each archetype.

I think this simple test quite elegantly shows the deficiency in the "3 element" system, yet at the same time shows why "water" is not the ideal word for Silent to use to describe "balanced" units.

Just like Newton's law of motion isn't exactly accurate when you know about relativity, it's still a useful teaching. Weight had to be re-defined as Mass for everything to work out. The terminology changed but an apple will still fall on your head, or keep moving along a straight line in space. Silent's ideas and theorems are still useful, but incomplete.

Obviously it's possible to include different elements into a single army, which makes the army more generalized and less vulnerable to it's polar opposite, thus pushing it more towards the origin. Some units (say Arcoflagellents) are ideal examples of their elements (water), while others (Terminators) are barely off the origin. That doesn't make the analogy any less useful.

Of course, like I've said, it does negate the romantic "water warrior" terminology. After all, the ideal "water warrior" is green and yells "Waaaagh" a lot! I think losing this terminology is the biggest hurdle to people accepting the full "Elemental" definitions. People have now equated "water" with "balanced" when the game system actually punished real "water" armies quite severly.

Edited by BaronTuman, 12 April 2007 - 04:16 PM.

My Templars Gallery
My Sisters Gallery

Anything worth doing is worth over-doing!

#49
Aidoneus

Aidoneus

    +FRATER DOMUS+

  • + FRATER DOMUS +
  • 4,214 posts
You realize that by "refining" Silent's system, what you've done is
-Change the terminology
-Change the fundamental defining characteristics
-Change the concept of the Beatdown/Control
-Change the tactics used by each element

What have you kept the same?!? You've changed absolutely everything about the system! How can you possibly contend that it's still the same?

And while you ask me to resfrain from implying that your system belongs elsewhere, I'll ask you to kindly stop implying I'm some kind of "noob" moron for disagreeing with you. I have no problem debating this with you, but let's try to keep it civil, okay? I severly hate it when people imply that I'm somehow incompetent just because I don't agree with them.

Beatdown and Control has nothing to do with any elements, or any pair of elements. It has to do, fundamentally, with which army needs to act fast to assert its victory condition, and which needs to deny the enemy's ability to do so in order to take a longer time setting up its own. If you change that to simply mean the "opposite" element, you've changed the concept completely.

As for your challenge, I don't know much about Orks, so this is slightly difficult because two of your examples are Orks. I assume the first is something like an all-biker spacie list or a destroyer-heavy Necron list in that it's very fast and very shooty, with little CC power. And I assume the second is a lot like a footslogging 'Nid horde list. If either of those is wrong, please let me know.

1) This is what Silent's original system would classify as an almost perfect example of Air, but what I would say is somewhere between Water and Fire. It very weak to incoming enemy fire, so it needs to use terrain and LoS denial to survive. Meanwhile, it's using its speed to maneuver into position to unleash devastating salvos of fire on flanks and isolated units, creating areas of "local superiority." However, because of it has spent so many points on speed, it can't simply seek to overwhelm the enemy all at once, as it's just not resilient or powerful enough to do so. That's why it plays somewhat reactively, and also keeps a good amount of focus on objectives.

2) In Silent's original system, this would be a combination of Fire and Earth, though mostly Fire. It's offensive, mobile (though not fast), and prefers CC, all indicative of Fire. However, with the ungodly numbers it can muster, it will be able to outlast most opponents, especially if it can get into CC where its numbers will be more of a protection, and that makes it Earth-like. I will admit right now that I don't know where this would fit into my linear system. I'll come back to that later.

3) In both Silent's and my systems, this is almost a pure Earth force. Large numbers, dug in in terrain, shooty... textbook Earth.

4) Fire. Without a doubt Fire. It's fast, true, but it doesn't look to create "local" superiority, it doesn't care about objectives overly much, and once the daemons are out it's not even all that fast, so not even Silent or Number6 would be likely to call it an Air army.

I mentioned that the Fire-Earth horde list doesn't fit into my linear model. Well done. I guess that means I'll have to re-think it. But I stand by Silent's definitions of the elements, and his system for categorizing them.

All right, my turn. Your system defines whole armies by how fast they can move and at what range they deal damage. It sounds like your system only works on homogenous armies. What about the following?

1) Blood Angels, with static long-range shooting and also fast CC units

2) Daemonbomb, with very fast units (with mid-range weapons) "dropping off" fairly slow CC units

3) A Mech IG list, with very long and very short ranged shooting

Correct me if I'm wrong, but by your method of categorizing, all three of these armies would end up very near the center, if not directly on it. However, these three armies will have undeniably and unmistakeably different playstyles (as well as different compositions). How can you justify a system that lumps these three armies together like that?

Water is not just an army with mid-range speed and mid-range offensive effectiveness. It is an army in which most, if not all, the units are flexible enough that they can act in battle in whatever way best suits the present tactical situations. I don't know how much you've followed the conversation earlier in this thread, but we discussed at length how a "conglomeration" army, made up of various different specialist units, does not act at all like what Silent described as Water in his tactica. Water has its own unique playstyle, and its own, unique unit types.

Again, I'm going to re-think my linear system, as it does seem to have at least one problem. I urge you to look at your system as well, and ask yourself if it really does match up with what Silent described. I'm not saying your system isn't interesting; I very much think it is. However, it isn't anything like Silent's system, and that's what we're interested in for the time being.
New Year's Resolution 2007: Keep track of my wins and losses. (note: only 1 vs. 1 games counted)

-Chaos (32/6/7) -Space Marines (3/0/0) -Necrons (4/1/0) -Tyranids (17/2/1) -Inquisition (67/13/13)
Total: (123/22/21) W/L/D


#50
number6

number6

    ++ SCÆNICUS EXTUNDO ++

  • ++ MODERATI CEDO ++
  • 3,504 posts
@BaronTuman: I've been largely staying out of your debate largely for Aidoneus's reasons, too (emphasis mine):

You realize that by "refining" Silent's system, what you've done is
-Change the terminology
-Change the fundamental defining characteristics
-Change the concept of the Beatdown/Control
-Change the tactics used by each element

What have you kept the same?!? You've changed absolutely everything about the system! How can you possibly contend that it's still the same?
...
I urge you to look at your system as well, and ask yourself if it really does match up with what Silent described. I'm not saying your system isn't interesting; I very much think it is. However, it isn't anything like Silent's system, and that's what we're interested in for the time being.

Have you considered starting another thread on army classifications?

However, your challenge do identify army types does fall within the discussion parameters of this thread, and as Aidoneus already weighed in, I thought it'd be interesting to see where we [dis]agree. :lol:

Prefatory note: Whatever classification metaphor we're employing, it is counterproductive to assert that the units, armies, tactics, and strategies we discuss are purely one classification element or another. Only rarely will that be true. Almost always the units, armies, tactics, and strategies will be some mixture of all four elements. I sense, BaronTuman, that you are resisting that, and insisting that if something is labeled as being Element A it therefore cannot be Element B. Not so! It can indeed be a mixture! The label is merely a convenient shorthand. As such, it, by definition, will miss much of the finer details. Does this make our metaphors useless? Of course not. We use shorthand descriptors all the time in our lives to stand in for much larger/more complicated concepts (akin to synecdoche). Referring to movies as "chick flicks" or "blockbusters", for example. Similarly, identifying a unit or army as "Air" and not "Water" does not invalidate any Waterish characteristics that unit or army may have. It simply notes our best attempt to identify the overarching characteristic at the expense of finer-grained details.

Anyway, your examples...

1) Ork KOS all buggy army (big shootas and rokkit launchas)

1) This is what Silent's original system would classify as an almost perfect example of Air, but what I would say is somewhere between Water and Fire. It very weak to incoming enemy fire, so it needs to use terrain and LoS denial to survive. Meanwhile, it's using its speed to maneuver into position to unleash devastating salvos of fire on flanks and isolated units, creating areas of "local superiority." However, because of it has spent so many points on speed, it can't simply seek to overwhelm the enemy all at once, as it's just not resilient or powerful enough to do so. That's why it plays somewhat reactively, and also keeps a good amount of focus on objectives.

Just like we have found similarities between Air and Water earlier in this thead -- or at least army compositions that successfully occupy a blurry space between elemental distinctions -- I think it is possible to make an argument that an army could be Air/Fire or Water/Fire. It may be I'm not fully understanding the composition a Kult of Speed army, but I think it is primarily a Fire army, possibly with Air overtones if the buggy count is really, REALLY high. It might be fragile, but I don't believe it is looking to take on limited pieces of the enemy. Rather, the few KoS armies I've seen seek that one opening through which they pound the enemy to the ground as quickly as possible. Ergo, Fire. However, like I noted, if the general is relying on the shooty mobility of buggies to a VERY large extent, then I can see it working successfully as an Air army with strong Fire overtones. Lots will depend on the playstyle employed by the general.

2) Ork madboyz horde

2) In Silent's original system, this would be a combination of Fire and Earth, though mostly Fire. It's offensive, mobile (though not fast), and prefers CC, all indicative of Fire. However, with the ungodly numbers it can muster, it will be able to outlast most opponents, especially if it can get into CC where its numbers will be more of a protection, and that makes it Earth-like.

I'm starting to think that armies that like to win games through force of numbers in close combat are primarily Fire armies, not Earth armies. The reason is that the army general is actively looking to overwhelm the enemy anywhwere s/he can, with as much force as is possible. That's very Fire. The fact that sheer Earthy numbers makes this tactic feasible is merely an interesting detail. But the playstyle is Fire.

3) Imperial Guard gunline

3) In both Silent's and my systems, this is almost a pure Earth force. Large numbers, dug in in terrain, shooty... textbook Earth.

Earth, absolutely. This is using sheer force of numbers defensively, as opposed to the Fire army that chooses to use sheer force of numbers offensively.

4) Khorne bikes & Daemon Bombs

4) Fire. Without a doubt Fire. It's fast, true, but it doesn't look to create "local" superiority, it doesn't care about objectives overly much, and once the daemons are out it's not even all that fast, so not even Silent or Number6 would be likely to call it an Air army.

Fire, absolutely.

Looking forward to comments on my previous post further identifying Air army characterstics, in the hopes of maintaining Air as an Element In Good Standing. :o

Edited by number6, 12 April 2007 - 06:47 PM.

RIP Warhammer 40,000: 21 Sep 1998 - 24 May 2014