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How much of 40k is based on Chance? How much on Skill? How much on Army Choice?  [RSS] Share on facebook Share on Twitter Submit to Reddit
How much of 40k is based on Chance? How much on Skill? How much on Army Choice?
Split Evenly between Chance, Skill and Army
Mostly Chance
Mostly Skill
Mostly Army
No opinion
Other (write in)

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Hellish Haemonculus

Boskydell, IL

I think it is mostly skill. In my experience skill can trump any amount of codex creep and any (practical) amount of luck.

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Assassin with Black Lotus Poison


Locclo wrote:I feel that it's about 40:30:20 (Skill, Army, Chance). Mainly because much of the game tends to be skillfully tilting the odds in your favor - for example, 10 marines charging a Rhino may have a chance of killing it, but 2 marines firing meltaguns at it would have better odds of doing so. Similarly, I rarely see one squad charge an equally matched squad and hope that the dice roll in the first squad's favor - it's all about tilting the odds by softening it up first.

I mainly put skill first because Tau, Nids and Daemons are definitely not real strong armies on their own, but a player at my FLGS can flat-out table so-called "stronger" armies without breaking a sweat because of his great deal of experience and skill. Having a good army and having strong luck are important, but having a strong tactical mind and a lot of experience can dramatically alter the outcome of a game.

You might want to double check you maths there buddy

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Stealthy Grot Snipa

It's mainly tactics and your army list. But if luck's not on your side then it doesn't matter.
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Sinister Chaos Marine


Skill should never be underestimated. Often the difference in a game will be a single mistake and the skill of the opponent to take advantage of it.
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Painting Within the Lines

Riverside, CA.

I started with Rogue Trader and GW games are the worst ROCK, PAPER, SCISSOR games I've ever seen. Codex creep killed this game for me.

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Shas'la with Pulse Carbine


4/9 army choice / list. 3/9 skill. 2/9 luck.
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Calm Celestian


Yeah considering you need permission from the dice to do dang near everything it is a game of chance. Army list and skill obviously have their place in this to minimize loss or failure but this is not a balanced game pitting the skills of two generals. Go play chess or some other non-dice/card game for that satisfaction.

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Shas'la with Pulse Carbine


Whilst in a single game what you say is true, if you played a thousand games luck would play nearly no part in the end result bcause it luck will inevitably balance out eventually between games, it would then be down to skill and army.
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Calm Celestian


if you played a thousand games luck would play nearly no part in the end result bcause it luck will inevitably balance out eventually between games

No, it wouldn't. Statistics say that the rolls will even out but not when. If you roll perfectly balanced dice so all six numbers will come up equally on average you still need certain numbers at certain times. Example, you need higher numbers to hit and lower numbers for leadership. You can roll the opposite of what you need and the dice would have still been 'balanced out'. As long as you need 'permission' from the dice to do something good player skill only mitigates the problem.

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Warp-Screaming Noise Marine


Id say more luck than anything skill and army choice are still essential parts but i think its about 50% luck you can be the most skillful player with the best army list but if the dice gods decide its not your day your screwed
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Agile Revenant Titan

In the Casualty section of a Blood Bowl dugout

Army, Skill, Chance, in descending order of importance, is my view on things.

Of course, "Other" deserves a mention because there's so many other factors such as your familiarity with your opponent's army.


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Devastating Dark Reaper

There is no doubt that chance plays a huge part in the game. That's part of what makes it fun/frustrating. In my opinion I had to vote for mostly skill, because I feel like chance evaluation and mitigation is part of being a skilled player. Despite the chance factors there are people that do very well consistently because their strategy can stand up to some bad luck.

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Longtime Dakkanaut

Ottawa Ontario Canada

Mostly terrain

Do you play 30k? It'd be a lot cooler if you did.  
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Regular Dakkanaut

50% skill, 30% army, 20% chance.

Deployment is, IMO, the single most important aspect of the game. Terrain, mission, and matchup all influence deployment. A bad deployment can deny you objectives, first turn shooting, get you into combat quickly, etc. Furthermore, it's critical that you understand your opponent's strategy before the game begins so you can do your best to disrupt it.
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Land Raider Pilot on Cruise Control

Twickenham, London

60% Army, 30% luck 10% skill

The only skill in this game is picking favourable match-ups for your units. You need to maximise the odds of rolling a success, which means maximisng the number of dice and minimising the numbers needed on those dice.

I don't really see a 'skill game' on the Crystal Maze being a game of 40K. Once you're familiar with your own army and those of your opponents, winning is all done in the list

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Crazy Marauder Horseman

Alexandria Virginia

Some armies require more skill than others. But you need "luck" still though.

" Change is INEVITABLE. All you can do is make sure it happens in your favor " - Tzeentch
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Imperial Agent Provocateur

I think it's honestly controlled by whether there's a proper amount of terrain.

One of the things that hampers strategy in 40k is range. On a 6x4 table, with heavy weapons that have common ranges from 24'' to 48'' a lot of units start out in range of eachother.

If there's a proper amount of terrain (is it 1/3 LoS blocking they recommend?) all kinds of strategies to get into an advantageous situation become available.

Without a decent amount of terrain, it's a shoot-off / race to charging distance from turn 1 and random chance / unbalanced units have much more affect on the game than any strategem.

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Waaagh! Warbiker

Burton Latimer, UK

I reckon that they're equally responsible for the outcome. If you fail to write a good army list or have bad skill, you'll be at a disadvantage.

A bad player with good dice won't always win, for example.

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Decrepit Dakkanaut

Hard to tell.

Most of the game once it's begun is decided by luck. What matters more is a strong army list though...and in the end, codex power varies as well...you have ridiculously OP WAAC codex stuff like GK, but on the other side, there's Tyranids / Tau.

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Nurgle Predator Driver with an Infestation

The Memphis Sprawl

Some army builds are vastly superior to entire other codices, no matter what the crank out of it. I voted army selection.

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Growlin' Guntrukk Driver with Killacannon


I'd say skill first, but very closely follow by chance and army, so something like: skill 40% army 30% chance 30%. A bad player CAN lose with a powerful army against a skilled opponent

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Renegade Inquisitor with a Bound Daemon

Tied and gagged in the back of your car

Army and chance are the major factors in 40k, especially 6th edition. A more skilled player is going to have an advantage, but 6th edition does a lot to lower the influence of player skill from 5th.
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Drop Trooper with Demo Charge

Oregon, USA

I'd say all three are necessary to win but considering some of the meta builds that power creep has allowed for....some armies are almost a win button for even the less skilled general.

Lady Luck may be fickle, but she loves a man who tries and tries again. 
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Possessed Khorne Marine Covered in Spikes

New Hampshire

I think Army of choice can affect chance, I like the Orks (not just because they are really sweet) But because I can roll 30+ dice in a single charge, even with a low BS the chances of getting good rolls is higher. and a high point match (1000) can make a small elite force like Space Marines become heavily outnumbered by all the Dakka.


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Lit By the Flames of Prospero

Edmonton, Alberta

I say down the middle, thow leaning more to Skill/Army. You need to have atleast 2 out of the 3 to be able to win a game.

But because chance is just that... Random chance. It means it leans towords:

1)You can't win if your army is garbage.
2)You Can't win if you don't know how to play that army well.

If you have the 1st two, you can make up for bad luck.

It is possible to win if you have the skill/Good Luck, or the Army/Good Luck. Thow Wining a game just because you had amazing luck is more a expection then the general rule of how you win a Warhammer Game.
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Regular Dakkanaut

I'd say it's mainly based on chance, after all it dosen't matter how good of an army and tactics you have in the end it's all up to the dices. I've seen pretty darn good players with very balanced and hard hitting armies loose at the flick of the wrist due to bad luck with the dices.

From each according to his ability, to each according to his need 
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Lesser Daemon of Chaos

Really, it also depends on how large the game is.
A 500 point game is going to be really unpredictable, and based mostly on the luck of the dice gods. A 5000 point Apoc game will probably be much more in line with probabilities.
Of course, knowing how to build a list and how to use it effectively are also a big factor.
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Stabbin' Skarboy

I usually find its your actual army list that gives you the best chance. If you have a unit that can counter another you are a lot better off than someone who doesn't.

*Anti-Flier Units
*Units that can get to the enemy's deployment zone fast.
*Template weapons vs Horde armies.

After that is skill.
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Calculating Commissar

pontiac, michigan; usa

I've played quite a bit and i never get how people claim that often armies rely on luck or a random element.

I don't even fully understand when people say a unit 'makes its points back'. Not every unit in an army is meant to kill sh*t. Sometimes they're meant to get an enemy's focus off of something else or are used as cannon fodder. The point of being a good player or having a good army is having a good cohesion in your army so that it all works well together.

Also my other problem is when people 'put all their eggs in one basket' and rely on luck completely for one thing. Yeah sure one combat didn't go your way. Sometimes that happens but if you're always relying on one unit to save the day for you then you're going to lose quite a bit. Maybe not every faction can afford it esp. if they're super elite but usually you don't want one unit being your only counter for an entire type of unit (melee, ranged infantry, armored infantry, tanks, etc.)

Then there's the problem with certain factions handling other factions or specific army builds better. I remember on one forum i was a part of that often times they mentioned one faction that used different army builds could take on certain races better and failed at others (such as facing tau or eldar believe it or not). I mean if you have an army that relies on something completely and you face an enemy army that basically counters how you built your list then you're probably gonna lose and when i say army i mean army composition and not the faction.

Saying that your game is entirely based on luck means you didn't prepare well enough for an army. Maybe you took the wrong army composition or fought the enemy on their terms rather than yours but it wasn't luck. To lose all the time as if the entire universe bets against you is a pretty ridiculous idea. Figure out what you're doing wrong or what you took wrong rather than blaming luck. I know blaming luck is easy but if you blame luck you'll never EVER change that supposed 'luck'. Even if you go to the horse races if you know the horses, the riders and the track well enough as well as weather and whatever else you're going to at least have better odds at winning. To me luck is an absurd idea and like superstitions and such.

I will admit some factions are possibly not that great but it's not like you're playing a game of chess with nothing but pawns facing somebody that has just as many pieces that are all worthwhile characters. Usually there's some kind of synergy you can work up but usually said synergy and tactics tend to develop and become more complicated with the more abilities said units have and how they can work together.


So if i was to throw out how much is based on chance i'd say not a lot. If you always finds yourself with 'bad luck' you probably relied too much on one thing and if it didn't work you were screwed or bad synergy or maybe you make a bad list for at least the armies you face.

So yeah i'd say army composition of you and your enemy is the biggest thing. Cover is even a big deal for some armies so the lack of it is something to think about but once again that's absolutely relying on something which is bad.

Skill plays a much smaller part but it still matters as playing an army that has bad synergy or with plenty of gaps in it is going to suck regardless whereas if you're a bad player with a good list you can still pull out some wins though you will probably get owned with tactics and moves and such. If you are a great player with a great army composition you'll do really well though mostly because you know the inside and out of what you can do from knowledge of rules or using diversions and such. I'd imagine back in 5th edition 40k if you were facing plenty of guard tanks it'd be a good idea to glance each tank instead of trying to kill one so that you can force them not to shoot untill you make it into combat and so that you can spread the damage.

As far as luck goes i'd say it usually shouldn't matter. If you fail a lot something is causing this supposed 'bad luck' whether your army list is bad (against the army you face, bad army synergy or a lot of proper or enough counters for certain units), your tactics or something else possibly.

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2013/02/01 12:30:28

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Longtime Dakkanaut

Assuming we're talking about on the table here and not counting skill at the list-building since that's wrapped up in "Army Composition" category.

75% Army Composition
15% Luck
10% Skull

This message was edited 1 time. Last update was at 2013/02/02 03:51:19

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