Image from Games Workshop
All the time I see articles listing how an army needs to have this or that or whatever included in it and if you don't, you'll never stand a chance at winning.
How about this... if you've got your compulsory one HQ and two Troops choices, then you're not missing anything! That's all you're required to have. Everything after that is stuff you want to add to your army based on the number of points you decided to play and what you like to use.
I think more often than not, people build lists and forget that they are playing against someone else. For example, they say things like...
"I'll take unit XYZ and shoot at my opponent from across the board and I can take out all his transports before he can use them."
You're right, I'm going to park all my vehicles out the open, leave them there and cry how your unit XYZ is destroying them wholesale.
"I'll take unit ABC and charge right up the middle and get into hand to hand combat and crush my opponent."
Because I'm just going to stand there and let you charge right into me?
Do people forget there are mission objectives? Doesn't anybody build their army for those anymore? We only look at how good a certain combination is and how impossible it is to beat or how well it could make it's points back. What makes you think I'm going to let you just do what you want with your army?
If you're great plan is that you are going to destroy my army by doing this or that... do you think I'm going to stand by and just watch? Think about it people. Did it ever occur to anyone that your opponent is trying to win as well or did you get so wrapped up in how powerful and cool the combination you have in your force is, that you can't see four feet across the table at what the other guy has lined up?
Credit goes to those players who pick the units they want to use, take the time to learn how to use them and do well (better than expected) with them in their lists. It goes to show that it's not just unit selection that wins games. It's how you use what you have as well. Fritz from over at Fritz40k is probably the most well known for this kind of thing. He always seemed to be trying to stay ahead of the curve while using his "outdated" Eldar Codex.
I'm at the point now where I've got a handful of 5th edition games under my belt with my Deathwing (enough to see some trends in my force) and I'll be sharing what I've done with them so far in some coming posts. It's not tactics based on unit selection, but based on the mission and what you can do with your army given certain scenarios.
And you guys thought you'd never see tactics here.