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Like many people (I suspect) when attempting to decide what goes in my SM list I like to use some maths. Not much, and nothing complex, but it makes me feel that there's some sort of science to my list. This generally involves working out the average number of casualties a given squad will deal in ideal circumstances. However, I've come to the conclusion that an unhealthy obsession with averages can lead you to ignore units that actually work pretty well. For example:
My most frequent opponents play DH or CSM - both high armour save infantry. In this situation, would a Predator Annihilator (with LC sponsons) or a Predator Destructor (with HB sponsons) work better (ignoring other options)?
The Annihilator hits an average of 2 and 2/9 (two ninths), wounds 1 and 23/27, and therefore kills almost two CSM or GK every turn. Whereas the Destructor only musters 1 and 7/27 casualties per turn (2*2/3*5/6*1/3 + 6*2/3*2/3*1/3). So the Annihilator's more likely to kill an additional trooper every turn - mostly due to that pesky 3+ armour save. Does that mean it's better?
The main problem is that averages cannot take into account the effect luck can have on a game. If I get really lucky with my Annihilator, I can kill three troopers per turn. However, if I get really incredibly legendarily lucky with my Destructor, I could kill eight troopers. Unlikely, yes, but a possibility none the less (albeit vanishingly slim). This is one reason I'll take the Destructor over the Annihilator - I like to take my chances rather than be a slave to averages. Not to mention that it's 35 points cheaper . . .
I'll leave you to consider how other Predator variations could work.
Good job mate, on that eye opener. People really do over look things like this. To find out if a certain unit is worth buying, a friend and I play that game using the rules for it, but without the model. If I don't like how it, fine, I didn't buy it. But if I do, I'll go ahead and buy it.
Rep for this, good job dude.
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4000+ Of Marines and Daemonhunters
2000+ Of Tyranids
You lose out on a single shot, but the shot you're left with is more accurate and more deadly.
Having an army and not owning a rulebook is like owning a car with no steering wheel.Originally Posted by amishcellphone
When I pick a unit for my army, I also try and see how it will play vs a whole range of opponents, not just MEQ's.
In this case, I would definitely come down on the side of the destructor with 2 hb's. Sure, its not so great against marines (although yes the potential is there), but it can win the day against many other armies with 4+ saves and worse.
My point : a predator annihilator isn't so great against horde armies.
So I guess i'm saying that, as well as your great post about how it can be best sometimes to ignore the math, that also any math they do should include a bunch of different armies, not just vs MEQ's. This is something that I don't see often enough.
"Pickles, the drummer, doodily doo. (Ding-dong, doodily, doodily, doo.)"
Also, you should google "garfield minus garfield". Awesome.
Excuse me popping my head(s) in, but since I'm here....
We just had this particular discussion in the Chaos forums. Since it is semi-pertinent to both armies, I'll just link you all to the post I made over there. You can skip over the stuff that pertains to only Chaos, but I do touch on the Space Marines a bit, and I think it's pertinent to this discussion.
Link - Click me!
I just realize I use the word "pertain" and it's conjugates far too often. I really need to stop doing that.
"In this case, I would definitely come down on the side of the destructor with 2 hb's. Sure, its not so great against marines (although yes the potential is there), but it can win the day against many other armies with 4+ saves and worse."
I'm in complete agreement. Nothing I like better than spoiling my Tau friend's day by wiping out his firewarrior unit (that'll teach 'em for only putting 8 warriors in it!)
I'd be interested if anyone can think of other unit variations that might maximise luck despite poorish average performance. I guess Whirlwinds could get extremely lucky sometimes!
Well this is just my opinoin. I find the Annihilator most efficent.
Here are my reasons why:
- the number of shots you get if you choose the heavy bolter sponsors.
- twin linked lascannon
Reasons why I might find the destructor better.
- better at killing tanks
- auto cannon