Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Playing Aggressively - The Key to Winning?

So I managed to get half a game in with my friend Chaos Dan yesterday before it started raining (he had the brilliant idea of playing in his backyard, so we had to call it quits). Anyways, I noticed that the one thing that he does differently from everyone else is play aggressively.

Just about everyone else I play with has a rather passive or timid playstyle - they tend to sit down where they are and rarely do anything to turn momentum in their favor. In 5th edition - this doesn't get you anywhere. By giving your opponent slack and by not keeping pressure on him, you allow him to gather his own momentum and turn the game around through either cunning (better positioning to attack) or sheer force (waiting for reserves).

By playing aggressively, by pushing where your enemy's army is weak or by making good use of whatever advantages you have, you're effectively denying your opponent the ability to fight back and you can continue to push to victory with relative ease. It's a simple idea - keep him on his toes and he won't be able to mount an effective counterattack.

Just don't get carried away with killing the ene- BLOOD FOR THE BLOOD GOD! *ahem* See? Keep a level head and think about what you're doing - if it's the bottom of turn 4 and you hold/contest no objectives, there's a huge problem. You're better off guaranteeing the win by securing more objectives than by trying to table the opponent.

Now, what do you do if you're facing an opponent that's equally aggressive or even more so? Play reactively. Many of you have probably read Way of the Water Warrior but if you haven't, do yourself a favor and read it as soon as you're done with this post. Should your opponent gain the upper hand (or start with it), the best thing you can do is to try and deny him of his advantages. Vulkan list? Stay further than 12" away and keep blasting away. Imperial Guard? Move from cover to cover until you can get into CC or disable their armor. Orks? SHOOT THEM HARDER and deny them the charge. If you can halt their momentum or at least make it ineffective (I'm looking at you, 3 Ork Boyz Mob!), then take what you have and strike decisively in order to turn the game around again.


Anywho, that's my rambling for the day. I have a band concert (it's tuba time!) later tonight, so I've got to get ready for that. I'll leave you with two pics.

I got bored and slapped this badboy together. Sergeant Bamf, wielding bolt-pistol and plasma pistol. I decided to add mini-bayonets as a compromise to myself (I originally was thinking dual chain-swords for SLASHY-DAKKA action).

Vulkan He'stan. I caved and ordered this badboy. I'm glad that the spear came as a seperate piece - I'll be reposing that thing for sure. A disappointment though is the weird fire-banner on his backpack. That thing feels like it'll snap off in a breeze.


  1. I completely agree with you. I try to play aggressively the whole game and no matter the odds I also don't give up. This has saved my butt more times than I can count because the other players assumed they had already won. Heck if I still have one model left in the gmae you can bet that one model is going to be a pain in my opponents butt until they do somethign about it.

  2. There's a right amount of aggression to have. I mean, someone like Tau is FINE sitting back...and shooting you to death.

    You have to basically break the enemy's ability to harm you. Don't have to kill him, but if he's oh, Orks? Blow out his transports, backpedal, and feed the Boyz lead 'til they're done. If it's guard? Break their more deadly threats (...often, those melta-vets, and something like Vendettas...) and then move from there.

    I'm guilty of not being aggressive enough sometimes with my own Fire Dragons, for example, and when I make that error? You bet it's costly.