Thursday, March 24, 2011

Cry Havoc
Making Mistakes

We all make mistakes. The key to playing a solid game is to play your strategy while committing a minimal amount of mistakes. Sticking to your strategy is an issue that will be the centerpiece of a future installment of Cry Havoc. Let’s address the concept of play mistakes and how to avoid them.
Simply put: a play mistake is when you commit an error during your game. This error could be skipping your movement phase and going right on to the shooting phase or forgetting to move all of your assaulting units. Errors can have a large impact on the outcome of your game. Here are a couple of ways that you can reduce the amount of mistakes you commit during a game:

1) Know your Army! If you are familiar with your army’s rules and wargear you are less likely to forget or misplay something during the course of a game. For example, I constantly forget that Thunder Hammers reduce a wounded opponents Initiative to 1 for the next Assault Phase. While this may seem like a small omission it becomes quite a large error if you’re fighting Mephiston or a Trygon.
2) Pay attention and think your choices through. I once read if you don’t know where to move one of your units – don’t move it anywhere. When you do move your forces think those choices through. If you get your Dire Avengers out of that Wave Serpent and use Bladestorm how many of those terminators will you kill? By quickly running the possibly outcomes of your choices through your head you can minimize your surprise at your opponents reactions.
3) Learn from your mistakes. If you make a mistake try to remember it and use the experience to your advantage in your next game. I know that’s easier said than done because as I pointed out before I always forget about my Thunder Hammers – funny for someone who’s played the Salamanders for the last 5 years. Talk to your opponent after the game, ask for and offer constructive criticism about what could have been differently.
4) Keep your eyes on the prize. You don’t need to table your opponent to win. By paying close attention to your mission parameters and staying focused on the path to victory you can avoid some mistakes that are borne from not identifying the best choice for the situation.
5) Know your enemy. Know your opponent’s army and what it is capable of doing. Ever lost a game before the 1st turn? It can happen if you play against a foe with a lot of Infiltrators and you decided to keep your entire army in Reserve. Surprises like that occur when you’re not aware of what you’re up against.

While it’s true that you can play a game without making any mistakes and not win, you are definitely more likely to lose if you commit numerous errors during the game. Please post your thoughts and comments.

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