Thursday, April 21, 2011

Tactics Article Check List

After reading some nonsense on BOLS recently, I decided to make a check list of what a good tactics article ought to look like. A thousand pardons, but I must rant now.

1. A tactics article is not reprinting the damn codex. Its saying something that isnt in the codex. What your readers are interested in is your opinion on what's in the codex, so don't waste your time or theirs tellling them stuff that's already in the book. Just go ahead and assume they've read it, and comment on its contents.

2. Don't say "maybe" or "sometimes" every other sentence. It's called mitigated speech, and it usually means that the person using it doesnt know what the fuck they're talking about. Either have an opinion and write it down, or dont have an opinion and shut up.

3. Don't write things like "everything is good if you use it right." That's called a truism. It's a statement that's so obvious that there's no reason to say it. It's a total waste of space. If you say this you're like that guy that says "my team won the game because they scored more points. that's what it's all about." No shit that's why the team won. And no shit units get better when they're used correctly. Don't be that guy.

4. Realize that there are some options, usually at least one in every codex, that are total crap and should not be taken under any circumstances whatever. I'm a chaos player, so for me that's chaos spawn. Feel free to point those units out in the book you're writing about.

5. Do back up reasoning with mathematics, common scenarios, tournament experience, cost/benefit comparisons, or some other persuasive reasoning, as opposed to just "this is a super cool idea it will totally work."

6. Do Make specific reccommendations. Dont write an article that tells me "if you think the upgrade is worth 25 points, take it." That's drek. I'm reading because I want to hear if you think the 25 point upgrade is worth it and why, not because I need your permission to do what I was going to do anyway.

If you write a tactics article and you follow my amazingly good advice, your article might be right and it might be wrong, but it probably wont be inane drivel. Thankyou good night.