army composition

My (Belated) Takeaways from the LVO Warhammer Panel

The Las Vegas Open was awhile ago, and the Warhammer Preview panel that was held the first night has been detailed in depth, as has the tournament itself. The results have been discussed ad infinitum. The models have been (rightly) drooled over by everyone. Innumerable blogs and podcasts and YouTube channels have had their go at it. So lets talk about it some more, eh? Mostly, because I don’t want to talk about those things. But I was there, and I have some things that have been brewing in the back of my mind.   Let’s be clear: The models are spectacular. But I’ve really got nothing to add there. It’s awesome that the Primaris line is getting fleshed out, and Chaos is getting some much needed sculpt attention. The Dark Mechanicum Nightmare Spider Thing in particular is amazing and I love everything about it. And while the vast majority of the panel was previewing amazing new models and people rightfully drooling over them, there was also an extended Q&A session. Now I didn&#

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Murder Your Darlings (or: Why I’ll Never Be a Serious 40K Contender)

“In fairness, ‘The Floor is Lava’ may not be the strongest competitive build.” – Val Heffelfinger, paraphrased There is a notion in writing called “Murder Your Darlings”. Basically, what it boils down to is not to be overly precious with your own ideas. That turn of phrase you really like? That “brief” digression into 19th century British Colonial diplomacy (this is sadly a real example)? If they don’t belong, get rid of them. Something that doesn’t serve the goal of your writing – to be clear, to convey information, etc. has to go, whether you like it or not. I tell my students to do this. I force myself to do this. But I won’t do this for my 40K armies – and that, more than anything else, is why I’m not good at competitive 40K. Let’s talk about Adam Abramowicz for a bit – this year’s “motivating example” for a lot of my thoughts on competitive 40K. For those of you not following Warzone

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Command Points are 8th Edition’s Psychic Dice

TL;DR: They’re good at injecting flavor into the game, are fun in small quantities, but when deployed en masse break the game. This started as what was just going to be a flippant post to the Variance Hammer Facebook page, but on the drive home things…took a turn. So here we are, talking about how Command Points, and the problems with them, run pretty parallel to the problems 7th edition had with the Psychic phase. But What About Formations? “Wait!” You say. “Command Points and Stratagems replaced formations, everyone knows this!” From a gameplay and source of mechanics perspective, this is correct. Command Points and Stratagems replaced Formations as “The expandable way to inject army-specific feel and special rules into the game”. But it’s not the intent of a mechanic, or what role it fills, that is often problematic. Sometimes, it’s the mechanic itself – and that’s where we hit the 7th edition psychic phase. Looking back on my 7th ed

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