Why Do You Play the Same 40K List over and Over?

Over the years I’ve been playing 40K I’ve seen a lot of people sell of their army to start a new one. A few times I asked why, and was told either they were just sick of the army, or they wanted to start a second army and needed the money to fund the new one.


Regarding the latter, a lot of times I’ve seen these same players come back to that army only now they have to start fresh. Some times they’ll even sell off that second army they started to fund their original one again. The problem here is you’re selling your original one for less than it’s worth, more often than not. That money goes into the second army, and then you turn around and sell that for less than it’s worth. Now you’re back to where you started, and with a lot less money to build up the army you once had.

Just doesn’t make sense to me.

I can understand the need for cash to get another army going. We all know it’s not the cheapest hobby out there. However, my thought is if you’re starting a second army then what’s the rush? Assuming you’re not bored of your first army then continue to play it while you build up that second one. If you are bored of the army, well now we’re getting to the point of my post.

Different 40K Army Builds

I find most armies have various ways to approach how you build the army. Usually you have assault versions, shooty version, hybrids, mechanized, etc. Now, if you’re just sick of the army as a whole than there’s nothing you can do about that and it might be time to move on to a new army. However, most of the people I see who are sick of their army are only playing one style, and they are playing the same list every time they play. They have a list for different sized games and it never changes. No wonder they get tired of their army; they’re only utilizing a small aspect of it.

I do understand that using the same list repeatedly will make you a better player. You’ll know your list intimately, know your strengths and weaknesses, and different ways to deploy against various types of armies. However, is that really worth the cost of your interest in the army? I did this leading up to a tournament, play tested the hell of our my list, and by the time the tournament was done I was burned out on my Orks. Fortunately, I have other armies I can play while that wears off, but not everyone does.

I enjoy writing lists. Actually, I enjoy trying different stuff out. I’ve written some very obscure lists and found some great unit synergy in doing so. The type of things I wouldn’t have probably figured out on paper, and definitely not figured out playing the same old list over and over.

It keeps my army fresh and new, and it also keeps my regular opponents on their toes as they can’t tailor their list all that much. Sure, they may know they are playing Orks, or Chaos Marines, but that’s it.

More of the Same

My favorite is when I see people sell off their existing army to only buy the same army in a different style; like selling off their Green Tide Orks to go Kult of Speed, or selling Ultramarines to play Salamanders. That one baffles me to no end. It’s the same army, buy what you need to add into your existing army to theme it the way you want. Why sell off the same army you plan to continue with, again at less than it’s worth, to buy the same army, but with less cash to pump into it?

If you build your army up continually, buy the various units the army has, then you have the option to play it as you see fit. You have a large collection to pull from. Instead these players get bored of their current list, sell it off, and buy the same army again, but with a different list in mind. Guess what? They get bored of the new list and repeat the process when instead they could have simply been growing the same army and it would have cost them less.

In Closing

So, my advice for anyone to keep the game fun, and your army, is to not get stuck playing the same list over and over. I don’t care how effective that list is, how many tournaments you’ve won with it, it’s going to get old. People think they’re getting tired of 40K when the reality is they’re tired of the repetitiveness of how they play their army. We humans are creatures of habit, but your hobby should not be another habit, it should be fun!

  • I never understood selling off armies. Like you say, people often tend to go back to their original army and are down money. I could see it perhaps in cases where there’s limited room in an apartment with perhaps a significant other not wanting boxes of old army men piling up.

    And yeah.. a friend of mine who was a devout Imperial Guard player got bored and bought Tau… I tried to warn him it seemed counterproductive, but he invested heavily… annnd soon got bored of them too. (At least he kept his Imps around) He’s since gone Ork, and loves having an army he actually has to move.

    • I could see going into another army that’s similar to your current one if you enjoy your current one and the other army offers a different flavor more fitting for you. But, if you’re bored of sitting back and shooting and then go pick up Tau, yeah…

      Orks are great. It seems everyone loves them even if they don’t care to play them.

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