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PostSubject: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeSun Jul 21 2013, 04:04

exactly what it sounds like. I am considering taking vect just for the 4+ seize. is it worth the investment?
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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeSun Jul 21 2013, 05:21

Read mushkillas battlereports. He almost never goes first and almost always wins.
I guess it depends on the list. If you have a ton of darklances or venoms alpha striking is really great. If. Your force has a lot of fast things in it like jetbikes going second can be a good idea so you can get line breaker and deny, claim objectives last turn. I guess it really depends on the situation army list and the mission. If you want help going first the baron is a cheaper investment that still helps your Ods of first turn.


Last edited by Bibitybopitybacon on Sun Jul 21 2013, 05:22; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : blasted auto correct.)
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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeSun Jul 21 2013, 09:48

i personally prefer to go second now, everything with night shields deployed as far back as possible.

plus it gives you a chance to position yourself against those pesky enemy flyer's which seem to be bloody everywhere these days.
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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeSun Jul 21 2013, 11:11

@Bibitybopitybacon wrote:
Read mushkillas battlereports. He almost never goes first and almost always wins.

Thanks for the kind words Bibitybopitybacon (the reports are linked in my signature, if anyone is interested).

I would say going first isn't important most of the time. Not if you are prepared, and have enough experience/practice to be comfortable going second (I find a lot of players who use the baron are uncomfortable going second because it happens so rarely).

The "win big lose big" is a common trend with Dark Eldar. In my experience I think the main culprit is players building their army to go first and not having a solid plan if they end up going second, which leads to winning when you go first and losing when you go second. With the addition of night fight this problem has only got worse again a lot of players rely too much on night fight and get punished badly when they come up against armies that can ignore it (imperial armies with search lights, Tau black sun filters etc). Combined with the glass cannon nature of the army and you will jump from one extreme to another.

How to get around this? Build your army and your battle plan around the worst case scenario: going second without night fight. The Dark Eldar army has all the tools it needs to be successful going first built in, so going first will never be a problem even if your list is designed to go second. This will make your games a lot more consistent.

How to get the most out of going second?

Reserves: reserves are really strong this edition. Coming in on a 3+ is a massive boost for DE. Going second means reserve units avoid and extra turn of your opponents shooting: coming in on turn 2 you avoid 2 of your opponents turns of shooting (his turn 1 and his turn 2), and only miss one of your turns of shooting (your turn 1). Your opponent always missing that extra turn of shooting can really make DE units like reavers/hellions/scourge a lot more survivable. Reserve also means the unit in reserve always gets the alpha strike even if you go second! This is huge considering the glass cannon nature of DE.

Objectives: going second is great for last turn denial or capture of objectives as well as earning line breaker. As there is a 33% chance the game will end on turn 5 and your opponent won't get a chance to shoot your scoring/contesting units. Abuse this!

Secondary objective: Going second with a fragile army like DE means your opponent should always get first blood. On the other hand our army is so mobile there is almost no reason not to get line-breaker (a luxury not all armies have). As for slay the warlord either gear your archon out to kill the enemy warlord or gear him out to stay back and stay alive.

Cover and terrain: vehicles only need to be 25% obscured to get a cover save! This means in 6th even in the most terrain sparse board you should be able to give all your transports cover, by using them to shield each other. Remember you can put those venoms with fliker field in front to create cover for your raiders.

Stretch those legs: With S4 vehicle explosion being inside an AV10 open topped transport is not the safest of places. So keep your troops out of them until they need to move (if a transport hasn't moved before the troops embark it can move flat out after they embark). This tends to put your opponent in the hard position of what to shoot, it also means he tends to ignore those empty transports meaning your more likely to have them around at the end of the game, giving you more late game mobility.

Minimise incoming fire: Because of the massive mobility of DE it's a sensible idea to deploy as far away from your opponent as possible to limit their incoming fire first turn. First turn isn't a big deal if you only lose one or two empty transports.

Plan your Pain: Power from pain rocks, it's a good idea to try and make sure units that can benefit from it get those infantry kills. Don't shoot venoms at units that are almost dead if you can avoid it, save those for your reavers, deepstriking hellions or a unit of warriors. A 5+ save might not seem like much but it makes your T3 units that little bit more survivable and make riding in our fragile transports less daunting. Power from Pain is designed to compensate the high casualties DE take, if you don't make the most of it, you are playing with one hand behind your back!

Seize: Getting seized on often spells game over for a Dark Eldar army due to our fragile nature, especially if our deployment was very aggressive. That's a 1/6 chance of losing every game before it even starts. By going second you avoid this, and although you will still take a turn of shooting from your opponent you will have deployed accordingly, so the damage will be a lot less severe.

In short have a solid plan for when things don't go your way (second, no night fight) and then enjoy the clean sailing when you get first turn. This way you should have far more consistent games.

Ironically I prefer going second!

Hope that helps. Smile

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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeSun Jul 21 2013, 13:02

Going first is very useful, not sure its worth 100pts for a 50% chance of it though.
I prefer target saturation. 9 venoms and 3 ravagers

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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeSun Jul 21 2013, 20:34

It depends what point level you are playing, your army composition, and your roster of typical opponents. I've been using him lately at 1500 and 1850 points--he's nothing short of devastating. He shifts the expected value of going first from a flat 50% to 66.6%. However, just taking Vect for first turn is not worth it, particularly as there are cheaper 1st turn options (Baron) and in-built mechanisms for minimizing 1st mover advantage (Night Shields).

If you want fist turn and an amazing combat unit, Vect is your go-to guy. Of late, I've been taking him with a unit of Incubi and that squad is terrifying. Marines? Toast. Guard blobs? Mince meat. Non-assault Terminators? Gone. The only thing I've only had two problems: Mind Shackle Scarabs and being too-uber. I will say that if you take him, particularly at 1850, you should hedge your bets by taking another assault unit as well as something like Night Shields.

That said, I am an unimaginative and overly blood thirsty tactician so you should probably just take Mushkilla at his word.

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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeSun Jul 21 2013, 20:45

Well there's a lot of info, Mush! Great ideas and good hints, I already thought I had went to a new strategy thread by you. Wink

I have noticed how a lot of players think going first is the most important thing in the game, and I have heard a player saying "Ok, lets roll who goes first". I figured he didn't even think it possible that someone would win the roll-off and say "You go first, I will go second".
If I get to go first, I will, but I will make sure I have possibilities of surviving even if I wont. I may try some strategies where I go second sometime.
I wouldn't take any character to improve the chances of going first.
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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeSun Jul 21 2013, 21:05

This is too complicated of an issue for an easy answer.
It depends on your list, the opponent's list, the mission, and, the board setup.

Often I like to go first simply in order to gain a battlefield advantage from choosing the board edge my opponent will be setting up on - as my army is generally fast enough to go anywhere at anytime regardless, my fights usually happen in the opponent's deployment zone, and depending how the map is set up and what list he's bringing, I want to go first to control where he can set up.

There are some lists (Necron fliers and Daemons come to immediate mind) where I almost always wish to go second. There are some (Imperial Guard or Tau gunline) where I almost always desire to go first.

Your list can affect it too - are you an assault oriented list or using a lot of HWG Wyches as anti-mech versus a gunline mech build? Probably going first is an advantage for you because you want to close the distance asap in order to control your opponent.

Do you have fliers that will, by definition, come in from reserve? Look at his list, do you need those fliers asap, or do you want them to come in as a response unit after his fliers?

What is the mission? In Kill Points, on average, you will be better served by going first. In objectives you will usually benefit from going second.

It's a complicated question with a lot of permutations.
I think Dark Kindred hit the nail on the head the best though - Vect gives you a better sieze chance...but he's terribly expensive for that power alone. If you want a dedicated death star unit, *then* take Vect...oh, and hey look, now you're probably an army focused a lot on assault, so it's useful that you're going first and he helps you do that. Nice benefit.

But don't take Vect just to go first.

I also find anyone badmouthing players of the Baron (looking at you Mush) to be off base. The Baron is not an 'oh dear gawd I need to go first!' tool (though he can be treated that way). The Baron is a 'I have a higher chance to control whether I go first or second as my needs demand it' tool - in other words he's a universal control tool and will benefit armies wanting to go second just as much as armies that want to go first. Indeed, he allows you to better dictate the optimal matchup for your army on a game by game basis, making him *substantially better* at meta control than Vect's seize, which only has a single application.

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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeSun Jul 21 2013, 21:36

@Thor665 wrote:
Often I like to go first simply in order to gain a battlefield advantage from choosing the board edge my opponent will be setting up on - as my army is generally fast enough to go anywhere at anytime regardless, my fights usually happen in the opponent's deployment zone, and depending how the map is set up and what list he's bringing, I want to go first to control where he can set up.

In 5th edition that may have been the case. But in 6th edition there's a separate roll for choosing table halves (page 118). Get with the times Thor. Wink

@Thor665 wrote:
I also find anyone badmouthing players of the Baron (looking at you Mush) to be off base. The Baron is not an 'oh dear gawd I need to go first!' tool (though he can be treated that way).

Where did I badmouth players of the baron? If something I said came across that way I apologies! Reading these forums I have found a lot of DE players think going first all the time is very important, and that DE rely on a first turn alpha strike to be successful. As a result they predominantly use the baron's ability to go first, they will get less practice going second and find going second more daunting. I don't see what's wrong with that observation? I find going first daunting, because most of my games I end up going second. It just comes down to experience and what you are comfortable with. Very Happy

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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeSun Jul 21 2013, 23:16

Like mush said not to important although it varies hugely depending on several factors in my opinion:
-The opponent e.g. mech IG, Tau, anything with range and blast templates can be painful in my experience even with a solid list
-Board size and dimensions. As it says on the tin, if you are playing length ways then its not really going to matter, width ways, when most stuff is already in range, again can be painful
-Terrain. Obviously.
-Good old fashioned luck. How many times on your first turn have you lost all your transports and swathes of men simply because when you needed that good old 5++ flickerfield save you fail it on everything. Anything with dice has a large amount of chance that not even vigilant planning can protect against

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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeMon Jul 22 2013, 01:17

@Mushkilla wrote:
In 5th edition that may have been the case. But in 6th edition there's a separate roll for choosing table halves (page 118). Get with the times Thor. Wink
Yeah, my bad, i keep forgetting we house ruled that because it seemed to allow too much gaming of objectives on deployment.

@Mushkilla wrote:
Where did I badmouth players of the baron? If something I said came across that way I apologies!
You did suggest anyone fielding a Baron who doesn't go first seems like a lost man-child. Wink

@Mushkilla wrote:
Reading these forums I have found a lot of DE players think going first all the time is very important, and that DE rely on a first turn alpha strike to be successful.
That comes from people mistaking the concept of getting in the first major strike with needing to do it on Turn 1. I agree that does seem to be an odd concept that some have - it's even gone to the point where people start describing 'beta-strike' as a strategy...which is really just saying, 'I do alpha strike on Turn 2'

@Mushkilla wrote:
As a result they predominantly use the baron's ability to go first, they will get less practice going second and find going second more daunting. I don't see what's wrong with that observation?
I suppose I took exception to the sweeping nature of the concept - I take Baron in order to arrange to go second just as much as I do it to go first - I don't see a connection between Baron and going first - I think there's a connection between Baron and choosing whether you go first or second. For instance, if you like to go second most of the time - The Baron could help you do it. You shouldn't just think of him in the concept of 'goes first' it's not really what he does.

@Mushkilla wrote:
I find going first daunting, because most of my games I end up going second. It just comes down to experience and what you are comfortable with. Very Happy
I suppose that's true, but I think it's better to understand why you may or may not whish to go first or second, and to understand the logic behind it. It's the same base concept that has people spamming Venoms and then complaining that they have trouble killing mech - they don't understand why Venoms are good, they just have been told they are and thus spam them. I'm just trying to educate on the deeper question of 'is going first important' which was the aspect of the thread I found interesting.

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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeMon Jul 22 2013, 07:24

@Thor665 wrote:
Yeah, my bad, i keep forgetting we house ruled that because it seemed to allow too much gaming of objectives on deployment.

Tell me about it, fighting Tau/IG when they have more objectives inside their deployment zone than you is rough.

@Thor665 wrote:
You did suggest anyone fielding a Baron who doesn't go first seems like a lost man-child. Wink

I'll try to make sure no man-children are harmed in the making of my future posts.

@Thor665 wrote:
I suppose I took exception to the sweeping nature of the concept - I take Baron in order to arrange to go second just as much as I do it to go first - I don't see a connection between Baron and going first - I think there's a connection between Baron and choosing whether you go first or second.

That might be true for you, however you are anything but an average Dark Eldar player. From what I have red on here (and other parts of the internet), there seems to be a strong connection between the Baron and going first (and beast packs). Again this stems from the popular misconception that Dark Eldar need to go first in order to do well.

@Thor665 wrote:
I suppose that's true, but I think it's better to understand why you may or may not whish to go first or second, and to understand the logic behind it.

See my philosophy is a bit different it's good to understand the advantages of going first/second against a variety of opponents in a variety of missions. I agree with that. However you only get to make that choice 50% of the time (baron aside). That's why I think building a list/strategy that can do well going first or second in a variety of situations against a variety of opponents is really important.

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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeMon Jul 22 2013, 07:52

@Mushkilla wrote:
Tell me about it, fighting Tau/IG when they have more objectives inside their deployment zone than you is rough.
Agreed - I have no idea why they set it up that way, last I checked 6th edition favored gunline a fair bit already, why hand them more?

@Mushkilla wrote:
See my philosophy is a bit different it's good to understand the advantages of going first/second against a variety of opponents in a variety of missions. I agree with that. However you only get to make that choice 50% of the time (baron aside). That's why I think building a list/strategy that can do well going first or second in a variety of situations against a variety of opponents is really important.
I don't think our philosophy is at all different in that regard.
I just like to game that 50% because...hey, screw the other player, if he wanted to control whether he went first or second maybe he shouldn't be playing a Hellturkey list. Wink

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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeMon Jul 22 2013, 12:03

@Mushkilla wrote:
there seems to be a strong connection between the Baron and going first (and beast packs)

Whats wrong with baron and Beast packs? Very Happy  Yes going second vs such things like Necrons, which cant shoot is far more better. My problem with going second is vs armies who can reach me wherever i hise, like Tau or IG or in tournaments where tables are often with very sparse terrain. If you can hide, sure go second, but staying in the open for one whole shooting turn is meh. We have no armor saves or big toughness or high AV. So Baron is very helpfull even for this +1 ability, 105 points is just a bargain.

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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeTue Jul 23 2013, 00:37

Not as important as winning the roll to go first. It depends on army matchups and composition, as well as the mission. In kill points there is absolutely no advantage to going second, and Relic first turn has a large edge due to the stupid rules of the mission (can't be contested, and can only be picked up during the movement phase). Essentially whoever picks it up first generally wins, as even if the other player gets them to drop it they'll have first chance to pick it back up again. In the other 4 missions, going second has last chance at objectives - effectively its the job of player 2 to 'take' objectives, and player 1 to 'hold' them. Of course, if my opponent can't get the relic on their turn 1 then I'd go second voluntarily.

Going second is easily mitigated by proper deployment and tactics. What really hurts is having the initiative stolen, so I find its best to at the very least deploy as if you were going second if you can.

Also, if going first is really that important to you, ally in GK and Coteaz. Seize the initiative on a 4+ with a re-roll Wink

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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeWed Jul 24 2013, 10:52

I dont believe going first is that much of a advantage. I mainly play at 500 points currently with a friend so I deploy in a way that all my units are out of line of sight anyway so that even should he get first turn and night fighting not be up he cant shoot me off the board. If I get first turn I just advance forward behind los blocking terrain and then jump on him in turn 2 as it is such a surprise to him when my Archon and her unit of 5 wyches with Hekatrix and agoniser assault and destroy a squad of 10 chaos space marines plus sorceror over 3 rounds of combat easily. It actually gets to the point that my opponent needs a few days break from playing warhammer after he has played against my Dark Eldar a few times as it seems like he cant counter my tactics
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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeWed Jul 24 2013, 12:25

@ArchonQueenKaleena wrote:
I dont believe going first is that much of a advantage. I mainly play at 500 points currently with a friend so I deploy in a way that all my units are out of line of sight

With respect, it's much easier to hide 500 points of DE than 1850 points so it's not really a valid comparison.

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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeWed Jul 24 2013, 12:48

@ArchonQueenKaleena wrote:
I dont believe going first is that much of a advantage. I mainly play at 500 points currently with a friend so I deploy in a way that all my units are out of line of sight anyway so that even should he get first turn and night fighting not be up he cant shoot me off the board. If I get first turn I just advance forward behind los blocking terrain and then jump on him in turn 2 as it is such a surprise to him when my Archon and her unit of 5 wyches with Hekatrix and agoniser assault and destroy a squad of 10 chaos space marines plus sorceror over 3 rounds of combat easily. It actually gets to the point that my opponent needs a few days break from playing warhammer after he has played against my Dark Eldar a few times as it seems like he cant counter my tactics

Dark eldar usually suffer from too small a board and too little terrain.
At 500pts, you have turned that on its head, you have too much space and too much terrain, both factors that hugely benefit DEldar
For those of us who play FLGS, we are lucky to have one piece of LOS blocking terrain we can fit two vehicles behind

I'm considering taking the new two quad cannon fortress to have at least a little

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PostSubject: Re: how important is going first?   how important is going first? I_icon_minitimeWed Aug 07 2013, 09:58

@Mushkilla wrote:
How to get around this? Build your army and your battle plan around the worst case scenario: going second without night fight. The Dark Eldar army has all the tools it needs to be successful going first built in, so going first will never be a problem even if your list is designed to go second. This will make your games a lot more consistent.

This exactly. Every factor you listed is good, I just wanted to mention one other thing. When going first, players tend to put their army together at one spot - so in Dawn of War they might stick everything in the center of their deployment zone right on the line. If you are going second then you can premeasure to make sure that you're out of range or out of sight of the big guns. You can use this to your advantage by choosing to go second so you can deploy in safety from the enemy. If your army is sufficiently mobile you can attempt to seize and get first blood because the enemy deployed in the open, expecting to try to blast you on turn 1 but leaving him vulnerable to a seize.

My preferred tactic is to choose to go second and hide then attempt to seize if I see a good opportunity. Night Fighting can be a boon because it will completely waste the enemy's first turn and if you deployed in such a way that you can jump out for first blood then you're miles ahead.

@Thor665 wrote:
There are some lists (Necron fliers and Daemons come to immediate mind) where I almost always wish to go second. There are some (Imperial Guard or Tau gunline) where I almost always desire to go first.

This is what I think a lot of people forget. Many players will opt to go second depending on their list or in a bid to contest objectives in the final turns of the game. This changes the psychology of the first turn, which people only want in order to secure first blood and to reduce the return fire.

If you and your opponent want to go first, then you each have a 50% chance to get it. If you want different turns, then you have a 100% chance to get what you want. The Baron gives you a 2/3 chance of getting the turn that you want, but if you want first turn then you only have a 50% chance to actually have it after the seize. So the Baron improves your chances of going first, but is incredibly good at improving your chances of going second. It's also noteworthy that if you want to go second that Coteaz and Vect's seize abilities are useless against you.

If you have Vect and Baron then you have a 50% chance to wind up with first turn after seize if you wanted it, a 67% chance to get second turn if you want it and a 33.5% chance to seize after choosing second turn if you want it. There isn't really a clean way to do the math to demonstrate all the possible outcomes in a way that makes sense. But suffise to say that your best strategy is to deploy as if you're getting second turn in every game (in case you get seized on), but plan to seize if it's available and no Night Fighting on turn 1.
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