N18 How are you discussing gangs & loadouts?

How much do you care at optimization/power when discussing gangs & loadouts?

  • Optimization is most important

    Votes: 3 7.1%
  • Optimization is medium imortant

    Votes: 28 66.7%
  • Fluff or die!

    Votes: 11 26.2%
  • Don't know

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    42
  • Poll closed .

TopsyKretts

Hive Lord
Honored Tribesman
Dec 29, 2017
6,142
6,320
193
Norway
A bit of a meta discussion here. How are you participating in discussions when people ask for help to create a gang? Typical example:
  • Hi, I'm a new player planning to make an Escher gang, got any tips?
The reason I ask is because most replies seem to be about power. Typical example:
  • That's a bad combo, use boltgun instead.
That's not meant as being negative! It's more the aspect of power/balance/optimization I'm curious about. It fees like this is the default theme in most discussions, even if never explicitly stated. How important is this to you? What do you think about discussion gangs & loadouts in regards to fluff vs power?
 

El Torro

Juve
Jan 5, 2015
35
35
28
Slough
I agree that the focus tends to be on making the gang more powerful. I don't think it's just that though. For example if a new player decides all their gangers have lasguns, even if this isn't a bad choice competitively, a lot of people will say that uniformity is boring in Necromunda. Different people will address it differently of course, but from what I've seen there is usually a balance of not wanting the new player to take a terrible gang loadout and not wanting them to take a gang which is boring to play (for either player).

I'm not sure what you mean by going with a gang that is fluff focused. In Necromunda a gang can have strong fluff, yet be cheesy and boring to play with and against. I'm looking at Corpse Grinder Cults when I say this, though there are other examples too.

I vote for "Optimization is medium important". I don't think a new player is going to enjoy playing a gang which is seriously disadvantaged, though as we all know it's very easy to break this game.
 

TopsyKretts

Hive Lord
Honored Tribesman
Dec 29, 2017
6,142
6,320
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Norway
Oh yes you are right, fluff was the wrong word, but let's say less competitive with narrative focus. It is particularly what you say about people addressing things differently that interests me. I started making gangs before I had good access to internet and even if I was online, I didn't have access to any discussions about miniature games let alone gang creation. So for me these discussions are quite opposite of what I'm used to. My background would be a mix of rule of cool and local meta, possibly copying good stuff my friends used but mostly leaning on whatever minis and conversions I've made. I get that "kids" (or new players rather) would be better served reading or discussing things online, particularly because there are so many more options now even for a single fighter and virtually infinite combinations to create a gang. However I wonder why the default seems to be what I perceive as "optimization" or perhaps as you describe it, don't make something total garbage.

One problem with the typical response in these cases is if two friends decide to play, one make a crazy gang that is very weak, the other asks here first and gets a strong build. Then they're off to a rough start. Same would of course be true without any external influence or guidance with the inherent imbalance in this game.

People claim countless times they can't imagine people playing this game competitively, but here we are, wouldn't many tips in this side of the forum lean towards competitive?
 

daveh

Ganger
Jan 16, 2022
75
133
43
most lists on yaktribe that describe themselves as 'fun' seem to be anything but fun to play against , im looking at you plasma boys and grenade launcher spam.
on the other hand my reclaimed autogun cawdor guys are just meat targets , so im not doing anything worth copying
 

Heart of Storm

Gang Hero
Mar 8, 2019
941
1,427
113
I voted "medium important" for optimisation as most people seem to want advise to make sure their gang doesn't blow chunks.

I take my steer on advice from what they put in the narrative, if they say they want a juve-focused orlock gang I'll try run with that constraint, if they don't set parameters I'll assume its just general optimisation advice they want.
 
Sep 22, 2021
36
15
18
I tend to want to find a balance between optimized and narrative, both when I'm asking for advice and when I'm making suggestions. I think it's beneficial for the OP to state what they're looking for as well. Like "Hey, I have this idea I was thinking about putting together, I don't know if it will play well, but some advice to make sure I survive some scenarios would be appreciated" or "I put this together Is this too over-powered?" or "My local meta is all OP and I don't feel I can keep up, please help me build a list that will stomp them!"
 
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TopsyKretts

Hive Lord
Honored Tribesman
Dec 29, 2017
6,142
6,320
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Norway
I voted "medium important" for optimisation as most people seem to want advise to make sure their gang doesn't blow chunks.

I take my steer on advice from what they put in the narrative, if they say they want a juve-focused orlock gang I'll try run with that constraint, if they don't set parameters I'll assume its just general optimisation advice they want.
That makes sense, but as @daveh mentions, sometimes parameters are "fun" but response would by default be tuned more towards optimization than fun. Of course entirely subjective, but "drop this sub-optimal gear and replace with this" is not what I think of as "fun".
 
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Casus

Ganger
Yak Comp 1st Place
Aug 17, 2014
95
415
98
Toronto, Canada
I think it's natural for critique to focus on the "power" side of things - if you are making a rule-of-cool gang, you don't need any feedback because you're outfitting your dudes with gear you think is cool / fun.

If you're asking for advice on loadouts, it's probably because you are looking to optimize or find out what others have found tactically effective (or ineffective).

Our local group has a few house rules to help combat overtuning:

- On Gang creation, special and heavy weapons, genesmithing and big names (orlock) must be unique. This includes combi weapons (so no combi las-plas + Plasma gunner to try to skirt this).
- On gang creation, skills and psychic powers must be from different categories.
- You may not choose a skill as an advancement that already exists in your gang (you can random-roll it though).

Venator and Outcast gangs are heavily reviewed by the person running the campaign to avoid issues as well.

This reduces the fastshot Plasma spam and mixes things up a bit more. It's not fool proof, but the min/max players are still easy to spot.
 

mateyboy3000

Gang Champion
May 29, 2017
284
283
63
- On gang creation, skills and psychic powers must be from different categories.
This sounds good until you realise some gangs have 1 or 2 skill sets that they can viably use without taking a garbage skill.

Also a hypothetical for you, how do you handle a delaque gang with 4 psykers at creation. They are locked to 3 disciplines at creation
 

spafe

Executive Officer in charge of Hats
Staff member
Necromunda Custodian
Yak Comp 2nd Place
Tribe Council
Feb 8, 2013
10,677
14,963
283
Tilehurst, U.k.
I've gone for fluff or die, but to be honest, I was more meaning in terms of how I plan my own gangs, and even then fluff isnt the right word, I dont like repeat load out (with a few exceptions), so go for variety. However I would always comment on others lists with a level of efficiency in mind. If someone has taken a heavy xbow, I wouldnt be straight away saying take a nade launcher instead, but if they have a heavy flamer I'd say drop it, its bad.

I do agree with above posters though, the 'fun' description on gangs really isnt usually!
 

Casus

Ganger
Yak Comp 1st Place
Aug 17, 2014
95
415
98
Toronto, Canada
This sounds good until you realise some gangs have 1 or 2 skill sets that they can viably use without taking a garbage skill. Also a hypothetical for you, how do you handle a delaque gang with 4 psykers at creation. They are locked to 3 disciplines at creation

Agreed - some skills are not optimal ("garbage skill"), that is a facet of the game we are trying to foster - fun, narrative, diverse, interesting.

Does that mean some gangs will definitely end up with sub-optimal skills? Sure. Arguably, some have pretty garbage skill options from the get-go (*cough*Cawdor Champions*cough*)

Does a sub-optimal skill in a gang of 6 - 9 dudes "ruin" your competitive edge? If that's the win-at-all-costs razors edge you are playing by, Necromunda (or at least, Necromunda in our play-group) is perhaps not the game for you - something more competitive, with a tested, cohesive and balanced rule-set, might be more up your alley.

Similarly, your example of a Delaque gang with 4 psykers... okay, Delaque psyker skills are pretty trash so I don't think this is ever going to actually come up, but I'm sure the arbitrator could make a call here if someone was in such a bind - probably allowing a duplicate discipline in the mix but with a unique power.

This is a game played between friends at the end of the day, for fun and laughs and ridiculous stories of that time your Juve's molotov scattered hard and set your own champion on fire who then fell off a gantry and fell to his doom in a ball of flame - we're playing with beer and pretzels, not running a tournament :)
 

Heart of Storm

Gang Hero
Mar 8, 2019
941
1,427
113
That makes sense, but as @daveh mentions, sometimes parameters are "fun" but response would by default be tuned more towards optimization than fun. Of course entirely subjective, but "drop this sub-optimal gear and replace with this" is not what I think of as "fun".
Just remember that for many people winning = fun, "fun" and "optimal" are not opposite ends of a linear scale.
 

cronevald

Gang Hero
Jun 5, 2016
1,070
2,301
123
Missoula, MT
I think a factor here is the players themselves. Someone with a more fluffy or thematic list probably isn't going to be asking for as much direct input, instead posting something along the lines of, "Hey this is my list and I think it's cool." On the other hand, players more into the nitty gritty of list building will be commenting on posts asking for advice. I think this gives the impression that the only advice given, and perhaps the only advice sought, is optimization.
 

spafe

Executive Officer in charge of Hats
Staff member
Necromunda Custodian
Yak Comp 2nd Place
Tribe Council
Feb 8, 2013
10,677
14,963
283
Tilehurst, U.k.
I think a factor here is the players themselves. Someone with a more fluffy or thematic list probably isn't going to be asking for as much direct input, instead posting something along the lines of, "Hey this is my list and I think it's cool." On the other hand, players more into the nitty gritty of list building will be commenting on posts asking for advice. I think this gives the impression that the only advice given, and perhaps the only advice sought, is optimization.
This is a really good point, but also touches on the other big thing that people responding to posts need to do. READ THE POST! dont just look a the list. I've certainly done this before, flicked through the list, thought 'oh, they should have xyz instead of abc' and then only upon re reading their intro realised they are asking for advice on skills, or are playing with house rules, or just going 'hey look at this funky theme', rather than asking for advice on the loadouts. That is also a big thing to make sure, the OP wants the advice and isnt just putting it up to show how cool a theme can be or whatever.
 

locleos

Ganger
Apr 19, 2022
110
113
43
I tend to discuss them from a power perspective because thats how i usually see the questions asked, and im more likely to answer questions phrased that way grom personal preference.

I do try to tailor to the question asked though, and label what bits of my advice i consider basic or high optimization.

People with a fluff project tend not to solicit advice that can be interpreted as 'improve my gang'.
 
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I think it's natural for critique to focus on the "power" side of things - if you are making a rule-of-cool gang, you don't need any feedback because you're outfitting your dudes with gear you think is cool / fun.

If you're asking for advice on loadouts, it's probably because you are looking to optimize or find out what others have found tactically effective (or ineffective).

Our local group has a few house rules to help combat overtuning:

- On Gang creation, special and heavy weapons, genesmithing and big names (orlock) must be unique. This includes combi weapons (so no combi las-plas + Plasma gunner to try to skirt this).
- On gang creation, skills and psychic powers must be from different categories.
- You may not choose a skill as an advancement that already exists in your gang (you can random-roll it though).

Venator and Outcast gangs are heavily reviewed by the person running the campaign to avoid issues as well.

This reduces the fastshot Plasma spam and mixes things up a bit more. It's not fool proof, but the min/max players are still easy to spot.
Very interesting @Casus

what about the rest of the campaign? Do you allow then to repeat weapons? or just at gang creation?
 
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MusingWarboss

Hive Guilder
Oct 31, 2013
2,933
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The reason I ask is because most replies seem to be about power.

People with a fluff project tend not to solicit advice that can be interpreted as 'improve my gang'.
I’m sure most responses to these questions tend to default to “power” as it’s easy enough to justify based on stats and probability and the like.

Also no-one wants to see anyone choose, build and paint up a whole gang knowing that it’s going to fail at every aspect and probably provide a poor playing experience.

But also fluff is so subjective. What fluff? GW’s fluff? Early Necromunda, Mid-Necromunda or Newcromunda?
If the latter are we talking N17-18? The House of Era? The Ash Wastes era?
Or are we talking about their own personal fluff??

It’s tricky, because someone could’ve come up with a great idea for a “fluffy” or “characterful” build but it could equally be fairly ineffective on the table.

I suppose the real question for any of them should be “what are your opponents like?” because that will probably determine what the best possible response should be, whether it’s cooing over their theme and conversions and not fussing over what they’ve equipped with or whether it’s pointing out that their loadout may mean they or their opponents are going to have some very miserable games.
 

TopsyKretts

Hive Lord
Honored Tribesman
Dec 29, 2017
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Things can be subjective, but when people say take boltgun instead of autogun and the implication is boltgun is more powerful / cost-efficient, that's got nothing to do with fluff in my book. Some cases can certainly have a degree of fluff, others can easily be ruled out as having nothing to do with fluff.
 
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