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Gameplay - how to avoid the trap of being "sneaky" in games

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Before a game, I will chat with my opponent so we both know what our armies are capable of and clear up any rules discrepancy we might have regarding our forces, battalions, magic or the battleplan itself. I still do this during the match, but in a competitive setting, like a GT, both players are responsible for knowing the ins-and-outs of the game. It's an interesting topic because courtesy in this hobby is what makes it awesome. However, when it comes to competition, is the onus on the experienced or beneficiary player to tell their opponent everything that's happening? Possibly, especially if the opponent has never faced that kind of army before, or the player is a warhammer rookie. These create positive gaming environments and open more friendly discussions. Hell, I always remind my opponent during combat about removing models for unit coherency so they don't lose additional models.

However, I wouldn't blame someone at a tournament if they remained silent as their opponent made a mistake they weren't aware of because it benefits their chances of winning. I'm starting to head in a narrative direction with my gaming, but I am still competitive at heart. I will admit I have done this before, as I'm sure some people reading this discussion have as well.

It really depends on your opponent I feel. If it's a relative newcomer or someone you don't often play against, I think its more important for both parties to have fun, so discussing rules openly and showing what the army does should be encouraged. But if myself or someone draws an experienced or stronger opponent at an event, then I feel the onus is on the opponent for knowing the rules of the game and avoiding the "sneakiness", unless they ask for a refresher or advice, to which me or anyone else should answer honestly. 

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Start of a game, I'm going to walk through "my army is ethereal, no rend applies, we all fly, etc". 

I'll highlight which artefacts I've taken and what my various abilities do. 

What I don't do is signal intent. I'll explain my tool kit, but not what I plan to make with it. 

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Well, I know it's not how most people play, but I really enjoy talking about the game, strategy and tactics while I'm playing. I'll clearly spell out my intentions, my buffs/debuffs, good ideas for my opponent and anything I can think of. I like discussing everything as the game goes on. If I think of a good strategy for my opponent to exploit my positioning, I'll definitely share it. If my opponent makes a move I can easily exploit, well I'll share that too. 

"Oh, watch out man, if you leave that guy there my Liberators are going to lightning in and swarm him and kill him!"

"I'm definitely going to shoot my Light Skyhooks at him, see if you keep him close for Look Out Sir..."

"Hey man, your Hexwraiths could totally come out of the underworld here and snag that objective no problem!"

I just find that talking about the game makes both players better and sharpens the strategic mind. I dont really care about winning or losing a game, I just want it to be fun and close, and hopefully more than 2 battlerounds!

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There is certainly two separate points of view - 

1) Knowing a opponents warscrolls, allegiance abilities, synergies and comobos is a skill and if a opponent doesn't know your army it's something you should take advantage as they lack that key skill to be a competitive playe r

2) Asking your opponent if there is anything they don't know and explaining anything they want to know / giving them a rundown of the synergies, combinations and / or warscrolls.

I don't think either is wrong and it's just how you assess the above. 

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10 hours ago, Vextol said:

I LOVE when a plan works 😂

If you can manage, with a ton of fiddling and creative play, to kill Nagash with a mighty Lord of Khorne, it's awesome.  Even if it "ruins their experience" they should take joy in my creative and we'll executed play.  We're both playing right?  Plus, I get more than one games joy out of it, so the cumulative joy is still greater overall 😋

Now, if they asked what they did at the start of the game and I said "Nothing really" that's not a plan working, that's being a ****.

I meant the sneakiness is used to to get the feeling =}

 

 

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Before the game I tell my opponent what my units and my abilities do, it's up to them to figure out that they are about to get smashed by 2 units of 3 summoned horrors coming from the side with courtier bearing +3" to charges artefact and my GKoTG can kill almost any monster or hero after chuging on Essence of Vulcatrix therefore dishing out 6 MWs on every 5+ to wound with his mount's maw

And it's not "sneaky", it's "clever"

Edited by XReN
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Well it depends I guess.

against friends and beginners, I usually, tell them everything my armie has to offer. On tournaments, when facing some of the most hardcore,  wanna win players, I only tell them, of what my army consist of, ability’s, command-trait and artifacts. 

what combination I’m seeking out to create in such events, are usually something I don’t really like to tell. 

(Although there have always been some exceptions)

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2 hours ago, XReN said:

... my GKoTG can kill almost any monster or hero after chuging on Essence of Vulcatrix therefore dishing out 6 MWs on every 5+ to wound with his mount's maw

Is that the case?  In the Allegiance Abilities section of the core rules it says that "Artefacts of power have no effect on attacks made by a hero's mount unless noted otherwise".  Unless it's received a very odd FAQ (not out of the question).

Also, on topic, I generally just remind my opponent of things that my army does that seem pertinent.  Unless one is a tournament player, it seems like expecting your opponent to memorize both their rules and yours is a bit of a steep ask.  I don't generally feel good about pulling the wool over my opponent's eyes by not telling them about a rule that will impact the game heavily, or about my opponent depriving me of such information (it's not like I've read their army book and know all their allegiance abilities).

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Maybe because I don't participate in tournaments, but I always start out every game during deployment telling my opponent what each of my units does and what the synergies between my units are. Win or lose, I want my opponent to have had fun.

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4 hours ago, XReN said:

Before the game I tell my opponent what my units and my abilities do, it's up to them to figure out that they are about to get smashed by 2 units of 3 summoned horrors coming from the side with courtier bearing +3" to charges artefact and my GKoTG can kill almost any monster or hero after chuging on Essence of Vulcatrix therefore dishing out 6 MWs on every 5+ to wound with his mount's maw

And it's not "sneaky", it's "clever"

Applying artefact’s effects to mounts is “cheating” unless it’s been FAQ’ed

edit: sorry @Nacnudllah just saw your post after replying!

Edited by Nos

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6 hours ago, XReN said:

Before the game I tell my opponent what my units and my abilities do, it's up to them to figure out that they are about to get smashed by 2 units of 3 summoned horrors coming from the side with courtier bearing +3" to charges artefact and my GKoTG can kill almost any monster or hero after chuging on Essence of Vulcatrix therefore dishing out 6 MWs on every 5+ to wound with his mount's maw

And it's not "sneaky", it's "clever"

You probably should tell your opponents what combos you plan on using since you're cheating by using arti with your mount. It seems you don't have the best grasp on the rules yet so maybe they could help you a bit.

Cheating isn't clever.

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Let's not all jump down @XReN's throat now, factions such as FEC, Fyreslayers, Ironjawz, Sylvaneth, and I'm sure some others have extremely ambiguous mount rules.  Unlike some factions, their warscrolls don't clarify what is and isn't considered a mount.  I could absolutely see a player who looks at the Loonboss on Mangler Squigs warscroll (that specifically calls out the squigs as a mount) and then the Abhorrant Ghoul King on Terrogheist scroll that doesn't and infer "Well if it's a mount for rules purposes, it will say on their warscroll".  I think there's a HUGE hole in AoS rules when it comes to mounts that really needs to be addressed.  As it stands, it's entirely based around "common sense" (which is not common at all) and house rules.  We already know that we can't use newer warscrolls to make decisions about older ones *looks at unmodified 6s vs 6+ effects*.


To stray back to the topic, I think (like pretty much everything) it depends on the context.  When I play against my brother at home I run through everything my army can do at a high level and remind him of different abilities if they're particularly relevant to a decision he's making.  But at a tournament, with prizes on the line? You're on your own.  I wouldn't lie and hide a command trait or artefact on my army list, or not explain an ability when asked, but I certainly wouldn't show my hand and tell them how I plan to implement it tactically.  Plus hey, I put in a bunch of time reading and reviewing every army's battletome so I have a good handle on how they play and what their abilities are, that's gotta be worth something right?

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1 hour ago, relic456 said:

Let's not all jump down @XReN's throat now, factions such as FEC, Fyreslayers, Ironjawz, Sylvaneth, and I'm sure some others have extremely ambiguous mount rules.  Unlike some factions, their warscrolls don't clarify what is and isn't considered a mount.  I could absolutely see a player who looks at the Loonboss on Mangler Squigs warscroll (that specifically calls out the squigs as a mount) and then the Abhorrant Ghoul King on Terrogheist scroll that doesn't and infer "Well if it's a mount for rules purposes, it will say on their warscroll".  I think there's a HUGE hole in AoS rules when it comes to mounts that really needs to be addressed.  As it stands, it's entirely based around "common sense" (which is not common at all) and house rules.  We already know that we can't use newer warscrolls to make decisions about older ones *looks at unmodified 6s vs 6+ effects*.


To stray back to the topic, I think (like pretty much everything) it depends on the context.  When I play against my brother at home I run through everything my army can do at a high level and remind him of different abilities if they're particularly relevant to a decision he's making.  But at a tournament, with prizes on the line? You're on your own.  I wouldn't lie and hide a command trait or artefact on my army list, or not explain an ability when asked, but I certainly wouldn't show my hand and tell them how I plan to implement it tactically.  Plus hey, I put in a bunch of time reading and reviewing every army's battletome so I have a good handle on how they play and what their abilities are, that's gotta be worth something right?

Honest mistakes or errors are fine but when someone declares their own calculated genius in committing them I think it’s fine to pull them up for it.

Also are mounts really that complicated? Something that is mounted? Are there any circumstances in which this isn’t the case? Genuine question!

Edited by Nos

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11 minutes ago, Nos said:

Also are mounts really that complicated? Something that is mounted? Are there any circumstances in which this isn’t the case? Genuine question!

I personally think the rules for mounts are atrociously unclear and I originally wrote up a huge response just about it.  I ended up deleting a huge chunk of it out since I think it's outside the scope of this thread.  Can DM me or start a new thread if you wanted to discuss further!

Edited by relic456

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12 minutes ago, Nos said:

Honest mistakes or errors are fine but when someone declares their own calculated genius in committing them I think it’s fine to pull them up for it.

Also are mounts really that complicated? Something that is mounted? Are there any circumstances in which this isn’t the case? Genuine question!

Pointing it out is fine but people should be a bit more careful about how you do it.  It never hurts to be polite at first.  If someone is a habitual & serial offender who is well aware of what they are doing then deal with them appropriately - but in this case I expect they honestly did not know.

Conceptually mounts are not complicated, but it has been a murky area in the AoS rules that as a whole has not been defined as well as it can be.  Some of the restrictions that apply in a blanket fashion are slightly obscure and not called out as well as they should be.  But, at least it looks like the devs have moved into much more explicit territory with the Gloomspite book.  Hopefully they put in a bit of effort and just errata the wording in the older warscrolls and tidy this up.

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I'm really into mindgames and psychological warfare, which is mostly only effective against an informed opponent. I'll make it a point to share everything, and also point out exactly what I'm capable of doing at any given point, where relevant. Especially if I want to scare them off, force poor maneuvering, or goad them into attacking the wrong unit.

Mind you, there is no deception involved. Lying is cheating, and does not lead to a valid victory. 

It is more a matter of actively challenging the opponent's ability to make good decisions by presenting more than one alternative. Sometimes I'll just straight up tell them my actual plan so that they'll forget to play according to their own in their efforts to sabotage mine. 

Essentially, if you know what they're going to do, because it is the best thing to do based on the information available, which is everything because you told them everything, then you know exactly what you have to do to counteract them, or even what units you expect to lose if they succeed (giving you a solid estimate of what you have left regardless of outcome). 

Sounds convoluted, but it translates to being informative, and chill about opponent's mistakes. While having fun with openly devious schemes. 

The mindset that you have to be unforgiving about mistakes in a competitive environment is self-defeating. If you can't handle your opponent at their best, then what's the point? Victory for its own sake does not a good player make. I'll expect my opponents to mess up a fair bit, but as long as it doesn't alter the overral/current state of the game (i.e: if they forgot to cast mystical shield and we're in the combat phase, fine, go for it. If they forgot to cast hand of dust on one of my units, and they've already charged it. Eh, no can do) - then allowing mechanical mistakes to be corrected is healthy for the overral state of the game.

Not to say that making tactical mistakes such as moving forward, charging into fanatics then realising/remembering that fanatics hit first and wanting to do something else instead counts as a valid re-do in any sense of the word ;)

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Well... I messed up, got stuck in AOS 1 on mount rules, I actually tought it works, as well as my opponents who are usually good with rules

 

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14 hours ago, Stroke said:

It seems you don't have the best grasp on the rules

I can bet ya I know rules far better than you and most people who play this game, but no one is safe from mistakes. I got used to thinking that only "weapon" artefacts are not allowed to be used with mount's attacks.

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