Thursday, 21 June 2012

Ruthless Casual #3: Clear and Distinct Perception

Now then, here I am sitting at my metaphorical fireplace, wondering about myriad possibilities. I've already decided I'm not a Hyper-Efficient, but I now need to justify the whole 'Ruthless' thing. There is an easy test to determine that I'm not pure casual.

To determine my casualness, I need only look at any army list on the GW website. If I say 'Why on earth would I field this?', then I am not pure casual. A GW website list does stupid things like pair a Vindicator with a Whirlwind, when I know from experience that Whirlwinds are useless. I used one in my boyhood, when I was pure casual. but now I look at the lists I built as a boy and think 'Why on earth would I field this?' For example, under Codex: Space Marines (4th Edition), my old 1000 was something close to this:

Commander- Master with plasma pistol, power fist, Terminator honours and iron halo.
Command Squad- One plasma gun, one power fist, Champion, Apothecary, Standard
Tactical Squad- 5 Space Marines with a flamer and missile launcher, in a Razorback with twin-linked lascannon
Scout Squad- 9 Scouts with 8 sniper rifles and 1 missile launcher
5 Assault Marines- Sergeant with power sword and combat shield
5 Devastators- 1 lascannon, 1 multi-melta, 1 plasma cannon, 1 missile launcher

Would I field that now? Feth no. Therefore I can't possibly be pure casual. Also, this means I can form a new maxim:

Ruthless Casual does not throw lists together willy-nilly.

And I should also add:

Ruthless Casual borrows both Hyper-Efficient and Pure Casual ideas.

That one should go at the top of the list. Anyway, I suppose you want to know what sort of ideas I mean? Well, have two examples. A Pure Casual plays with models they like. The Ruthless Casual does the same, except maybe omits a few things they like aesthetically. If they use a unit the HE declares subpar, they might make it function to the best of its ability. Maybe it isn't as good as the unit the HE would use instead, but it still works.

From the HE camp, I can take the concept of duality, of units able to do two things well, for example a Biker squad, which can take powerful AT weapons but still have twin-linked bolters to fight infantry. However, the RC may not take duality in every case where it could be taken, may take more specialised units (I really like Ratling Snipers, for example, as they are cheap and more accurate than Scouts), and is more likely to take duality for the sake of it, whereas the HE would not, focusing instead on optimising the unit's existing powers.

That marks the end point of this Meditation. I now have three maxims:

Ruthless Casual borrows both Hyper-Efficient and Pure Casual ideas.
Ruthless Casual is riskier but more rewarding.
Ruthless Casual does not throw lists together willy-nilly.

Oh, and a point about Possessed. I was going to say that they fit excellently into the risk-reward ideal and that for 5 more points than a Berzerker, you get an Invulnerable Save and S5 all-round. Then I remembered that Berzerkers have grenades, hit other Marines on 3s and can take a power fist. Oh, and did I mention they're scoring? Berzerkers are gold. Possessed are bronze. But hey, they're still better than a Chaos Dreadnought. Therefore, I'll add the following maxim as a serious end-note:

Ruthless Casual follows the scientific method.

Falsification and the reformation of hypotheses are an important part of the process.

Sidenote: Got Illuminor Szeras and the GK Codex today. Expect a Szeras article soon.

1 comment:

Rushputin said...

I dunno; I've had some success backing up my Deathwing with 3 Whirlwinds. :)

But otherwise, I absolutely track what you're saying. I aim for efficiency but, hey, I wanna run all Khorne so I'm going to run all Khorne, m'kay?