8/12/2005

The "Cheese" Formula: Pick Two

My old friend Andrew Pemberton-Piggot (may he rest in peace) told me many, many things I will always remember. One of them was the day he was telling about his job as a tutor at the University of Alberta. He was talking about tutors and how he had a sign outside his door which served as a notice about how he worked:
"Cheap, Good, Fast: Pick Two"
When I was having a chat with some of the lads today about "cheese" and how to define it, I realized that a similar trifecta occurred, and it goes something like this:
"Low Points Cost, Hard-to-kill, Mighty Offensive Power: Pick Two"
Take, for instance, a souped-up Falcon: Hard-to-kill, awesome offensive abilities, but not cheap. Now take the War Walkers: Mighty offensive abilities, (relatively) low points cost, very easy to kill. At the moment I can't think of a unit which has humble offensive powers but costs few points and is hard-to-kill, but you get the idea.

This formula only applies to units (as opposed, say, to tactics), but I think it's an excellent way to ask yourself if what you're going up against is unfair. So you think my eight-man Seer Council, with its numerous psychic powers, fortuned invulnerable save and witchblades up the ying-yang is too powerful? Maybe you should consider the fact that it costs me about 500 points. So you think my five-woman squad of Howling Banshees, with its high initiative and plethora of power weapons, is too good for the cost? Consider the fact that they're all toughness 3, strength 3 and have a 4+ save.

This is why I don't mind Land Raiders that are jacked up and come out shooting; their points are seriously high. This is why I don't mind Dark Eldar Warriors; cheap, tons of heavy weapons, but very easy to kill.

Now Wraithlords... hmm...

Food for thought.

1 comment:

Bill said...

Good post. But I would like to point out that this is not the end all of Cheese, but merely a large component of it.

There is also the "combo" cheese factors, i.e. when two units are more effective working together than their individual points cost would suggest.
Example: Marine tactical squads with plas-las. One by itself is not too annoying, two are dangerous, three are deadly and worth more than the combined points cost.