Lets talk about Meta

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  • So, one of the things I always found interesting about any wargame is the way the game is played all over the world. From just a couple of friends playing in their basements to what armies people are playing in their GT's. The more competitive players keep an eye out for what armies other people play, and what they expect to face when going to a tournament, and they build their list around it. This is usually called the Meta.
    One of the things I've noticed on the forum the last weeks is that a lot of people think that "their" Meta is how the game is played all over the world. What they experience playing against must be the same for everyone right? Nobody is bringing WDG, and everyone is playing those dirty dwarves right?

    Since I am one of the little cogs in the 9th age project that keeps track of the tournament results for my own country I decided to have a little look at differences in the Meta. For my study case I'm only looking at tournaments that were played with the 1.0 version of the rules. We don't have to many results yet of those (if you organize any 9th age events please report the results on the forum, it really helps us!) but I did find 2 countries that both had 3 events for me to compare the results from, in the same time span....

    Germany VS The Netherlands


    An interesting study case for this experiment. Both countries are geographical neighbours and have a similar western culture. Both have a long tradition of wargaming, and an active wargaming scene. So, results should be similar right?
    Here are the results:


    So, as most of you will see on a quick glance is that there are some big differences between both countries.
    While Germany seems to love the ravaging hordes of the angry goatmen, the Dutch seem less focused on the brawling herd, and those hedonistic Dutchies seem to love their Deamons a little bit less than the Germans. Dwarves are a big no show in Germany for these 3 tournaments, while the Dutch seem to love the stubbies on the battle field. While the Dutch also love the Empire the Germans are less keen on them, but they bring almost twice the amount of the Highborns to play. As the Dutch seem to love Dwarfs so much, its no suprise the ID are very active in the scene, while like the normal Dwarfs the Germans don't use them. Maybe the Germans just hate short people?
    They do seem to love knights in shining armor, while this is the first no-show army on the Dutch side. both countries seem to like the Ogres (no suprise here, both countries love their meat) but while both the Lizzies and the Greenskins are being used in Germany they are a lot less frequent on the Dutch side.
    Dutch players seem obsessed with the Sylvan Elves compared to the Germans. Must be some spiritual connection between being able to smoke the green stuff, and play the green stuff I guess.
    The Germans on the other hand love to bring the Vermin Swarm to the table, must be their cheesy nature, while the Dutch are less focused on them.
    Vampire Counts and Undying Dynasties seem to be equal in popularity, while the Warriors of the Dark Gods are very active in the Dutch scene compared to the German Metal Heads.

    So, what does this say about the Meta of these 2 countries?

    The Undeath Armies, Dread Elves, Saurian Ancients and the Ogre Khans are the only armies that have a roughly equal attendance in meta. The other armies vary a lot!
    Looking at 3 tournaments per country, the Germans brought 14 out of 16 armies, while the Dutch brought 15 out of 16. Since this is just a small sampling of results we can't read to much out of this, and I will properly run the numbers again in a few months to see if the Meta per country changed or stabilized. Still, I think its a good thing that there is such a spread of armies, and if you stack the armies of both countries, all of the 9th age armies see the table on a regular basis.

    Also you should properly expect to get shot at a lot when your playing in a Dutch tournament with all the Sylvan Elves, Dwarfs and Empire running around.....


    2,560 times read

Comments 19

  • Petterwass -

    I wish the guy who does Variance Hammer would play 9th age :)
    He is really good at this sort of things, being a statistician by trade. He's done a couple for 40K which were pretty nice.

  • SkargitCrookfang -

    I wish I could see the Canadian Meta, as a whole... but the regional meta in Halifax is EoS and SE saturated with loads of nastiness. Fun environment to play in. Being competitive can still be fun and friendly!

  • Glonojad -

    I did the same for three tournaments in Poland including the Szczyrk Master. The number of participants was 15, 22 and 73 people, making a total of 110 selections. The results are as follows:

    WDG 14 12,7%
    VC 8 7,3%
    UD 1 0,9%
    VS 10 9,1%
    SE 12 10,9%
    SA 4 3,6%
    OnG 6 5,5%
    OK 3 2,7%
    KoE 5 4,5%
    ID 3 2,7%
    HE 10 9,1%
    EoS 7 6,4%
    DH 10 9,1%
    DE 7 6,4%
    DL 6 5,5%
    BH 4 3,6%
    110 100,0%

    • Blonde Beer -

      Great, thanks!
      Im planning to make a new blogpost when we have more results in (say a month or 2) and Ill contact you then to see if you have more results for me if you dont mind.
      Would be nice to get an overall view worldwide by then.

  • Marchosias -

    You probably know this but just to be sure: to get meaningful results about army strength, you should also compare the army distribution with the last tournaments in 8th. Or, ideally, get some data about people with access to several armies and analyze what they did NOT choose. Many Dutch playing dwars could just mean there are lots of dwarf fans among the active gamers; but many Dutchman choosing dwarfs over other armies would probably mean dwarfs are considered strong or interesting.

    • tiny -

      The article is not about army strength ;)

    • vbbulldog24 -

      META can be defined as Most Effective Tactic Available, therefore strength/power does also comes into play, Like said before by @Marchosias . I want to know which specific units were used and which were not used to conclude which tactics give the better chance of winning with the rules of 1.0 with the army/unit special rules that synergize well together. This will then indicate why certain armies are considered very strong picks over other armies. Some players make their choice by specifically picking such an army, or if they are limited to which armies they own, they will build that army in a specific way that benefits the best of the current rules.

  • Glonojad -

    You should have a look at the Polish meta too, there was already a Master Tournament in the 9th age.

    • Blonde Beer -

      Yeah, I was already looking at the Polish results, would just like a bit more of them before I work on them. Lets hope the TO's get the results to us, or a Polish player can send them.

    • Glonojad -

      I believe there was a guy who did that. I may try to have a look at the matter in the evening

  • tommytucker -

    This is an excellent article, it is very well written and on interesting subject. Thank you.

  • Gnomes2169 -

    Well... looks like DE are similarly disliked in both metas. Though at least they were present at all! Haha. Ha. Haha... this does not bring my evil, murdery heart hope.

    However, VC is doing alright in both! Yaaaaaaaaaaaay! :D

  • Kathal -

    The only problem I have with the graphic is, that they are not ordered (so the legend is not ordered in any way), which makes it really hard to compare, since some of the colours are really close.

    Otherwise, nice and small article.

  • Blonde Beer -

    Haha, well I have the lists for the ETC Warmup, but those are "secret" on the request of the attending countries as normal.
    They are very interesting tough!

  • Kpl.blutch -

    Well. I am collecting in tourney results from Copenhagen/denmark
    Here UD has got a GREAT comeback. 4 out of 30 armies at a 30 player tourney this sunday (most represented army)
    EoS, HbE O&G and VC are 3 armies each.
    No ID (but I do not think, they have ever been a 'popular' army in Denmark)
    No DE !!! Guess people either played them to dead in 8. or they are percived to have changed to much. (I know 2 in my local area, that shifted from DE, after the 9. Age rules came out)
    But this is the first 'bigger' tourney since may 1. I guess the ETC-warm up later this month, will give a more "competetive" view on the different races :)

    Christoffer

  • Arjac Rockfist -

    Very interesting brother and well done :) this is a fantastic idea!