Sunday, 30 December 2012

Is Dual Force Org Bad? - A Response

I thought I'd do something a little different for the last post of 2012. Therefore I'm going to be doing a response to something that was posted earlier in the year.

The post that I'm going to be replying to is from a very famous 40k blog. 'Yes the truth hurts' run by Stelek, and although it is extremely unlikely that he reads this poky little blog, I'd like to make my point anyway. I disagree with Stelek 99% of the time, but I've picked this post in relation to the fact that at its core it regards the big 40k news for the year. I could have gone with the whole, 'Forge World in tournaments' debate, but as it stands I haven't attended a single Forge World allowing tournament, and so have a lack of experience, although I do have 3 of them lined up in the next 2 months.

I'm not going to link to the post in question here, but if you go to Yes the Truth Hurts and enter '2 FOC is bad' you'll get the post. It came out a week after 6th edition, and so was probably a bit hasty and a bit full of nerd rage but that's no excuse for a poorly thought out argument, especially from such a well known blog and especially when you're going to use demeaning and offensive language to describe anyone that doesn't agree with your proposition.

Onto the subject of this post, as you may have probably guessed, the proposition made by Stelek is that dual force org is bad for the game. By this, we mean the rule that states that once a game reaches 2,000pts or more, you double the number of force organisation slots available to you. You now have access to 4 HQ choices, 6 Elites, and so on.

He begins the article with the following introduction,

'Here are some broken lists.

Are the Unbeatable at 2k?

Well, you tell me.'

He then ends the post with,

'Seriously, you thought 40k5e was boring?

Play against any of these armies and your brain will shut right off'

During the article, he then proceeds to create lists for 4 different army books, all of which he deems broken by telling the reader what they will think when they face them across the table. Those who agree with him, also post more of these 'broken' lists, often using different Codecies, in the comments section of the post. Now here's the hypocrisy.

Let's say that the dual force org Space Wolves army that he has built plays against the dual force org Ork army from the same article. This is a perfectly legitimate situation, as in a dual force org 2,000pt game both armies have access to the dual force org. Now, if these 2 lists come against each other are they both still unbeatable?

Now let's assume that all Codecies have the potential to make what Stelek defines has, 'unbeatable' combinations using the double force org, and let's say that you're at an extremely competitive 2,000pt tournament that allows double force organisation, or you're in the top bracket of a GT in the U.S which is allowing double force org, and everyone has brought one of these lists. Are they all still unbeatable? Does this mean that no-one will win any games, and no-one will lose any games? Does every game result in a draw?

Of course it doesn't. I am always very hasty before labelling a unit, a Codex, or a list as broken. This is because if everything in a room is broken, then nothing is. If you have 2 armies that are broken fighting against each other, are they still both broken within the context of that game? No they are not, they cancel each other out. Sure, the game may be a better match up for one army than the other, but lists don't have to be broken for this to apply. You can turn up to a fluffy tournament with your fluffy list and play against another fluffy list, with your list essentially able to cope with your opponents better than your opponent's is able to cope with yours, but does that make your list any more broken? No, it means it's a good match up.

In the same way, in a room full of 'broken' lists, because dual force org has been enabled, is your list still broken? Broken can generally be defined (in my opinion, feel free to disagree with me) as so powerful that it ruins the game for your opponent. If you have 2 of these lists pitched against each other then they are evenly matched, and so are not ruining the game for your opponent and so are not broken or unbeatable.

If you have a dual force org list playing against a list that is only allowed 1 force organisation chart, sure the dual force org list has a huge advantage. But at the end of the day, this is never going to be the case. In the same way, if you wanted to play a triple force organisation game, and both armies are subjected to this, go for it, you're both subjected to the same restrictions, or lack thereof.

I realise that I'm probably repeating myself here so I'm going to wrap this up.

My favourite quote from the article is a comment that is left by Stelek himself, and it reads,

'No, 2 FOC is just bad. Period. There are no ifs.'

Making an absolute statement that dual force org is bad for the game with no evidence to support this claim other than posting a number of army lists that would be evenly matched against each other is not a strong argument.

If everyone's army list is 'unbeatable', nobody's is.

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