Email I received: Usual format, except that this one has a lengthy series of paragraphs at the end, so reading specs please kiddies, and get a drink now. NOW!
Well, if you aren't going to get a drink now, you better not get up half-way through. Yes, you Sandy. Just sit there. I don't care if you're thirsty, you should have thought of that before we started.Hi TKE,
I have enjoyed your blog and your comments on YTTH, for some time now. I have always found your advise, sarcasm, and wit to be very useful and amusing. I have learned quite a lot about this game by reading your posts/comments. With that in mind, I was hoping you could give me some advise about choosing an army to play in 5th edition.I do my best! I'm glad I was able to help, because it's what I aim to do. Sure, self-promotion is a part of what I aim for, but only so that more people listen to me. Benefits them, and, where it doesn't - hopefully I benefit.
Some background first. I have been playing 40K since 3.5, with most of my experience in the 4th edition years. I played the Black Legion, Eldar, and Imperial Guard. I had a number of years of great fun with my gaming group and local tournament scene. I was never a great player but could hold my own against higher skilled opponents. My experience with 5th edition has been very different. I played some when it came out, but then moved to Hawaii about a year and a half ago (no gaming on the Big Island, at all). Consequently, I have played about 3 games in that amount of time, when I would visit my friends back on the mainland. My 40K fix has been reading yours and Stelek's blogs, and learning about the game from a purely theoretical level. I feel that I have learned a great deal, but have never put it in practice.Sorry to hear that. I don't play as much as I'd like (though who really does?) but not being able to get a game in without flying to another state...that's pretty arse.
2 weeks ago, I found some guys who play 40k locally. A nice group, with a varied amount of skill and ability. I now have an opportunity to play once a week, which is a godsend, but I have no idea what to play. Its not a question of models or buying a new army. Its a question of what is interesting to play in 5th edition. What army would you recommend to someone who is in my position? What would be a good army to cut my teeth on and enjoy 40K? I am very interested in your advice and feedback, since I value your knowledge of the game and your opinion.
Thanks very much,
Well, thanks for the email Matt. This question is quite a difficult one to answer, really - though it overtook the emails I have half-finished replies to (lol @ Ryan and Ray!) sitting here in Draft form. From the previous armies you played, I can ascertain little of your gaming style. Guard and Eldar are predominantly shooty armies. Eldar, however, have and especially had formidable CC power, and the capacity to take very CC focused lists, with the Biel-Tan. Black Legion in the previous Dex was a bit of a hodgepodge, whereas now it's merely a colour scheme. Still, overall it seems your desire not to play these previous armies (reading here, YTTH and indeed anywhere on the Web would let you know the power of the Guard - and this therefore would be a no-brainer if then you truly wanted to dust them off. (Not a euphemism)
Since nothing says 'shooty' like a wall of AV12 Chimeras, you are likely looking for a different direction; a different paradigm; a different central focus; an ...okay, you get the point. ;)
With that being the case, you want an army perhaps that's more heavily focused on CC? [As an aside, since it IS relevant, but I don't know how to squeeze it in - the army I consider most fun in general, not so much in 5th, but overall - is Orks. Hurling a mass of bodies and armour at the foe with no concern for their lives is great, and not something I can do with my Eldar. I'm still uncomfortable with suiciding my Dragons, and often delay in the vain hope my Lances will do the job, or I can spare my Dragons somehow. lol] Well Daemons would fit this bill, but I can't see them being much fun, especially gimped as they are by being almost all metal. Being crap is one thing, being horrible to construct, paint, and especially protect from wear and tear? Orks, of course, are supposedly CC beasts...but let's skip them. We can assume you don't want to totally smash face at the club - since making friends with the only group of 40k players for 2000 miles is more important than being totally competitive.
Eldar are a fun tactical challenge, being far from a beginner army...but you've been there, and done that. Plus, the fun quotient drops every time a new Codex comes out, by a factor of 12. Just ask Fritz. Nilla Marines can be nice, but they may be too bland, hence why you've not played them before. BTs are too close to a revamp, as are Necrons (boring anyway), Dark Eldar (horrible models), DH (also teh sucxxorz) and WH (too expensive.) DA are too far from a revamp to be worth more than a passing mention. Wolves? Well, there's certainly a very fun feeling about the book, and I'm sure it'd be great to run all those TWC at the foe. Can you be bothered with the great investment that would become, converting half the army? Depends on how much you're into that facet of the hobby, really. BA are nice, very characterful too - if maybe a little less so. However, they seem to be a little fragile, and so I'm not sure. Certainly worth playtesting the Chaos boys as Mech BA, depending on collection, obvs, to see if they fit your style. Playtesting Wolves, also, seems wise.
Unless I cocked up somewhere, the only army I didn't mention is Nids*.
Now, Nids are an Enidma. An Enidma wrapped in a Puzzlevore.
They're competitive, no doubt - but they're somehow less so than other 5e books. They feel more limited in build and construction depth, even though they have solid choices across the FoC. I haven't played with or even against this Codex's Nids yet, because the only decent Nid player I know gave up and turned to Space Vampires when the Dex came out, because he hates it. I could proxy my Orks, but I'm afraid I'll enjoy it too much and spend money on real Nids I can't really afford.
As much as that recent BoLShit claimed Chaos was the 'Sleeper Hit' of 5e, I think Nids truly are going to turn out to be solidly good right through into 6th. I can't put my thumb on it, it's more instinct than concrete fact, but something about the book just screams 'future-proofed' to me. It's weird...
Also, shitting out swarms of Gaunts is Win, no? :p
I think Nids are probably the single most fun army in the game, because they're so one-dimensional in aim, but so multi-faceted in execution. I think of digging out some Boyz to proxy a Nid list almost every day, and it's a struggle not to rearrange my carrier cases in such a way that I have a 'TyranOrk' list ready to go with the minimum of fuss or effort. I avidly devour Nid articles such as those posted by Stelek and Raptor1313 because I want to sink my teeth into the army proper, and release the Beast of Conversion. Nids are my recommendation because they are so far removed from the others, so utterly alien, that they have an almost indescribable appeal. Of course, YMMV. :D
Oh, and a shout out for Magic Juggler's new blog - Bad 40k Advice.
* - Of course, I really fucked up by forgetting both Tau and CHAOS. Well, Chaos are too far from a new Codex to be in any way viable, as they get fucked in the ear by new stuff constantly, and are better represented by Wolves or Angels...and Tau? Well, they've never seemed fun to me, which is a large part of why I've never even really considered playing them, or bought their Codex. Either Codex. Obvs, I'll buy the next one. lmao.**
** - I know, no youtube*** clip this post, so I thought I'd out in one that makes me laugh, just because.
*** - Did everyone get BOTH Solid Snake clips in the last post? One for 'So' and one for 'Solid'.****