Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Tavern Talk: Multiple Armies Part Two

In part one, I detailed how my quest for multiple armies in Warhammer 40,000 ended back where I started with Space Marines.  Regardless of the different types of Marine armies, I only needed one set of minis and got all the variety I could want just by purchasing a different Marine flavor codex.

My Fantasy story is a bit different.  Around the time I started 40k in the early 90's I started Fantasy with a Brettonian army after I was in awe of the Green Knight model.  I never really had an army, since I was a kid and all my hobby dollars went to 40k.  I don't know what actually happened to the Brettonian models I owned.  I bet they are sitting in my dad's house somewhere in storage.

Once I got to high school I got back into Fantasy with a Chaos Army.  My army had a bunch of Knights, a Lord of Juggernaut, a bunch of Bloodletters, and a bunch of Chariots.  I played two games total, I believe.  My LGS closed so I had no where to play, and I went off to college.  I didn't have a lot of extra space in college so I sold the Chaos army to make room and for beer money.  

Evil, baroque armor.  What more could you want?  I dunno, maybe the ability to shoot things?

As I said in a previous post, I started Warriors of Chaos when the new book came out because I liked the idea of an all cavalry army with lots of magic, and I love the Baroque style of the armor and weapons.  It appealed to me aesthetically.  When I was debating which army to get, I was going between the Warriors and Dark Elves, they both appealed to me aesthetically, but I liked the play style of all cavalry and I thought they did that better than DE could.  I did very well competitively with the all cavalry/magic army in 7th Edition, and I was very happy with WoC.

When the 8th Edition rumors started, I realized which was the wind was blowing, plus I had some extra money, so I started putting together a Dark Elves army.  It was almost the exact opposite of my Warriors army.  It was all infantry (with the exception of Hydras) and had tons of shooting.  You can find the lists I like to run on the blog pretty much everywhere.  They couldn't be more different than Warrior in the way they played, and I was very happy about that.  I currently play them quite happily.  

Dark Elves with 5x the variety!

The question that relates to the Tavern Talk topic, why did I try to expand to other armies in 40k but fail, whereas I successfully expanded in Fantasy?  In my mind, the reason it stuck was my initial choice of army.  By choosing Warriors of Chaos, I picked an imbalanced army book.  Unlike Space Marines, WoC can only do a couple of things well, and some things (shooting) they can't really do at all.  I can scratch all my itches within the umbrella of Marine 'dexes.  I cannot come close to doing that with Warriors of Chaos.  So when I expanded to Dark Elves, they offered me something I couldn't get in my original army book.  Xenos 40k armies offered me variety, but I could copy their play style with marines to a great extent.  Dark Elves do things WoC could never even try to replicate.  

Based on these thoughts, my conclusion is that Fantasy by virtue of not having the ubiquitous army like Space Marines lends itself to additional army expansion.  40k, even if you start with a xenos army, is likely to result in at most 2 natural armies: the xenos you started with and the marines you expanded to.  It is a rare player indeed who started with xenos and expanded to other xenos armies eternally avoiding Marines.  Once you expanded to (or start with) Marines, the endless variety within freezes you out of further expansion.

1 comment:

  1. I actually started with Marines in 40k, but abandoned them in favor of Eldar (back in the early days of 3rd editions). A few years later I started Orks and then sold off the Marines, so I'm a bit of a 40k outlier.

    However, I agree with you as to fantasy armies. I've had Brettonians, Chaos (when you could have warriors & daemons in the same army) and Lizards over the years. I currently only use the Lizards and have sold off the Chaos, but at this point in my hobby career I'd be more inclined to start another fantasy army over 40k.