Thursday, 10 July 2014

On Resisting change. Or not...

As a Shaltari player I have a certain arrogance about my army. It doesn’t win every time, and if you manage to hit it, it hurts. A lot.*

But thankfully that doesn’t happen all that much since I’m nippy as an excitable puppy you’ve fed red-bull to, and have a forcefield that means a third of your gunners may as well have done stormtrooper training for all the good they do. Factor in some good command cards with a set of guns that put Arnie to shame and we’re on to a winner. I don’t know what the stats are like, but it seems Shaltari have been leading or in the top few spots of most tournaments recently as players get more used to the shenanigans and gates (see Zombiestate’s posts for more info on bamboozling and crushing your opponents). 

So it’s with a certain cocked eyebrow and (un-earned) swager that I first looked at the sneak peeks and Dropzone’s very own Dave Lewis’ comments on the up and coming race, the Resistance. 

Meh, I thought. More humans to put to the sword/ throw in front of the jelly-head Scourge. I’ll take those out with my huge guns and then carry on as ever. Resistance, as the Borg say, will be futile. I mean, what do we know about them? They have Mad Max style technicals. And supposedly good dropships. An a battlebus. And an AA tank. And other stuff.

Hmm. My second thought was that this sounded interesting, if a bit wacky. Well, that’s ok then, they’ll be the comedy army, like something out of the film Waterworld. But on land**. But listening to pod casts and interviews as well as occasionally talking to the Hawk team as well, It seems that there’s also two types of Resistance army; ones that have gone full Mad Max and become Feral nutters, and others that are more Jon Conor style survival vets fighting the good fight and waiting for the UCM to come liberate them.

Not delving too deeply into the ins and outs of the Resistance themselves, (and after taking three paragraphs to get there) my main point emerges. Let’s be honest, they aren’t going to be pushovers. I doubt they will be completely over powered either. But what I do think will happen is a shift in the meta.

Now, to most gamers that sounds like a no-brainer, and an unnecessary comment. However for the less tournament bound and perhaps neophyte players out there, it bears repeating. 

“What is this Meta you speak of, oh Gettodadropship, most long-winded of bloggers?” I hear you sarcastically groan***.

Well, it’s exactly what we talk about on this blog. What’s good. What’s not so good, but can work with specific tactics. What’s currently trending in tournament and local play. Hints and tips of army vs. army match-ups that can win you games. Overall, it’s the current (sometimes begrudgingly) agreed upon general consensus of what you should take and what wins games IV*

Something new always changes things, and this changes the meta. We’ve seen it already with new units like the Ferrum and Hades. Your play style has to adapt.

My point, if I have one, is this: originally I thought we’d all be like the Borg, with the Resistance being futile and experienced army players walking all over them. But the more sneak peeks there are and the more everyone finds out about the new race, the more it seems that’s not going to happen.

My suggestion? Be even MORE like the Borg. In as much as we’ll have to adapt and change to counter the new race. In friendly match-ups it won’t be so much of a change, as if you know what you’re fighting you can always choose your army for that race a little bit. No matter what they actually have, I think tournament Meta will be wildly different for a while as people try new things and work out lists and tactics that can work effectively against all-comers.

I’m looking forward to it. Even if it means more ways to hurt my loveably spiky army.

*Like, really. Seriously. Ow. I mean, you think it’s harsh when someone kills your precious Ferrum after slogging across the board to get at it, or your desolator goes down in flames after ALL the AA fires at it. Try having your main battle tanks die. On 4+.  To Wolverines.
**So, basically Landworld. Or just World. Could go either way.
***yes I know, but sometimes everyone needs to stop and think about, especially if they are hard of thinking like myself.
IV* again, see Zombiestate’s views on Jaguars. Which he’s slowly convincing me of. I even bought some the other day. And I’ve won more games since. Damned meta.

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