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Efficiency versus Redundancy
, What's your preference and why?
Member No.: 35
Joined: 30-September 04
The conversation near the end of the DE topic got me thinking about this.
What do you guys prefer, Redundancy or Efficiency? Let me elaborate quickly so we're all talking about the same thing.
To be efficient is to achieve the maximum output for the minimum of input. An efficient army list will spend just enough points on a given unit in order to accomplish its task, and no more, saving points for better use elsewhere.
A list favouring redundancy will spend extra points on units in order for them to be able to still accomplish their goal even after something has gone wrong. This is obviously done at the expense of those extra points that could have been used elsewhere.
Here's a concrete example.
Last night I played a 2012 point game in preparation for a 2012 point tournament (first tourney of 2012, hence the weird points-size). My army looked as follows:
HoK, Firestorm Blade, AoK, BSB
HoS, General, Siren Song
HoT, Spell Breaker, MoS (Beasts)
39xBloodletters, Banner, endless war, muso.
39xdaemonettes, Banner, Siren Standard, muso
The redundancy is evident in the daemonette and bloodletter unit sizes. an efficient version of the above list would drop both infantry units to 30, and take either a 20-strong horor unit for the Herald, or a 20-strong bloodletter or plaguebearer unit for more tactical flexibility. The downside is that after taking the inevitable artiller-pounding from the dwarfs, the big bloodletter unit would immediately be losing hitting power.
(Also, just for future reference, I'd drop the crusher for a unit of Furies. I tried it out this game after reading up on the notion, but I'd rather have Furies for that job...)
So which approach do people prefer, and why? I obviously favour redundancy myself, since I hate having a unit made useless by a rock / spell or two.
Member No.: 2,484
Joined: 4-August 10
ah good topic! i play daemons and beastmen and the approach that i favor depends on which army i play.
my beastmen for example, i use huge units, multiple pieces of magic defense gear, 4+ wards on my most important characters, stubborn crown, standard of discipline plus a BSB, all redirector units are taken in multiples of 2-4, and several low level wizards for miasma spam. i favor the redundancy because the army is much more rugged and losing an element (my gor or bestigor herd for example) will be crippling to my battle plan. i need my heavy hitters to smash like a ton of bricks so lots of bodies (minimum of 40), i need to control what they get hit by and when, so lots of redirectors, expecting some to be shot/panicked/magicked away. the stubborn crown, standard of discpline, and bsb all combine for layers of redundant LD protection to ensure that once i get into combat, i stay there until the enemy is dead.
my latest daemon list is the exact opposite:
keeper w/ spirit swallower as general
HoT w/ fire and wings
HoS w/ siren song
HoS w/ etherblade
24 Daemonettes w/ ecstasy
20 Daemonettes w/ siren
2 solo crushers
as you can see, not one single function in the army is redundant (except for the 2 crushers, but that isn't really a redundancy since they fulfill the same role in theory but usually end up doing very different things). no bsb and no grindability means everything needs to work right the first time, but no element (except the keeper) is so essential to victory that i can't win without it.
you can see that each unit is specialized and really doesn't perform well outside of its intended purpose. the keeper is my heavy combat res generator and deals with redirectors by terror-panicking them out of the way of key units. she also handles all of the high T work. the larger daemonette unit usually gets the siren herald and is the anvil/battleline anchor (if i can be said to have a "battle line" at all). the other daemonette unit is too small and is useless in this role. the smaller unit gets the etherblade herald and is tasked with high AS foes like knights and mournfanges, a can opener essentially. the hounds are too expensive to redirect and are too small to be a heavy flanker so they usually hunt support units and act as a light peripheral flanker. the seekers get WM/chariot/ironblaster duty as well as anti-scout duty due to the vanguard. the fiends function as cannon screen and heavy hitter and the solo crushers act as redirectors and character assassins and are the closest thing to general purpose units in the army. HoT is the only source of flaming attacks and ranged damage so his role is obvious.
while this list is not optimized and has several glaring weaknesses, it is built around efficiency. for competitive play, it think the former is better, as it leaves less to chance. the latter puts much more emphasis on the skill of the player as everything has to work in concert to win but if it does, it is much more powerful than redundancy (imo of course!). i play this way for fun mostly, my old daemon lists consisted of multiple flamer units and huge blocks but i've become quite enamored with the "efficiency" approach as of late.
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