|Ok so the picture techincally shows cheating, but you get the idea!|
So time for some simple tactical advice, and this applies to all of the Codexes out there. A lot of this may be pretty obvious, however these things bear replacing.
Reading the blogs this comes up again and again. And while I may be the first to try things that people on the internet say are a bad idea... ignoring this rule is a fatal mistake.
It doesn't matter if you are playing Warmachine, BattleTech, 40k, Warhammer, Warpath or any other wargame out there. You need to figure out what parts of your opponents army can hurt you and prioritize how you deal with them.
People always seem to perceive the best way to do this is to buy all the Codexes as they come out and read about what other armies can do. I will agree that to some extent this can help... but that is all!
You will find that the best way to find out what an army to do is to.... PLAY it. That's right, get some games against it. I have found that unless you play as an army its very difficulty from reading a Codex to come up with game winning tactics that work in practice.
The majority of my experience as a wargamer comes from my opponents, seeing what they do, how they do it and what I need to do to avoid the trap in the future.
Take decisions away from your Opponent.
Don't let the opponent do whatever they want. Force them to make decisions, or take away their ability to decide to do something.
For example from this post the other day someone quite rightly quoted that 15 Blood Claws have a 0.8333 chance of taking a wound off a Dreadknight on the Charge. So the argument was that not charging with the Blood Claws was the right decision.
I believe it was a mistake.... here is the reasoning.
If we assume that I charge the Blood Claws then if they pass their Counter Attack check they get 45 attacks back at me, resulting in .625 wounds, if they fail their Counter Attack they get only 0.416 wounds.
Not huge differences there I admit... but now lets consider what the Dreadknight can do if you don't charge it. Well at the very least assuming the Blood Claws are the only target it gets to shoot, then charge you and gets +1 Attack itself.
if the Blood Claws aren't the only target, then it could Shunt 30" and attack something else, it could move 12" and charge 6" to attack something else (Long Fangs anyone?).
Also it is worth considering that on the charge, on average you cause 5 wounds, that's 5 dice I have to roll a 2+ on, statistically I should pass all of them, or fail 1, but if you don't make me roll those dice I promise you I wont fail any Armour saves.
Ok so if you Charge me with 4 attacks I may very well win the combat against you, could break you and force you to continue fleeing, meaning I have killed your Blood Claws and am now free to do what I want... but there is a CHANCE of me doing that, if you don't charge me then I promise you that I WILL be attacking something else.
Play to your Strengths
Before any game you should be able to look at what your opponents army list consists of even if this is just a quick scan through. The better you know the Codex, or rather the more practice you have had against an army the easier it is to know what they are capable of.
Don't waste units / shots / powers / charges against something that you are unlikely to hurt. Not unless the aim is to deny someone an oppourtunity to do something.
For example your Termagaunts can't hurt that Dreadnought, but if you can stop it shooting / assaulting something else then charging it is a smart option.
As mentioned in the Target Priority section, pick your targets wisely. Just because an armoured behemoth of a Landraider is bearing down on your Long Fangs, if they all have Rocket Launchers it may be more worth while ignoring it to shoot at a unit of Marines.
Ok, so reading this back it still makes sense to me, some bits seem a bit contradictory, i.e Ignoring the threat when you can't hurt it, but charge it if you can prevent it doing something. A lot of wargaming is about luck, how the dice come up for you, that much is obvious. But a lot more is about how you play your army. Well played armies from 'under powered' codexes can be very difficult to beat.
So what advice would you add to this, what works for you?