Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Going Tactical - thoughts on the future

I've been thinking quite a lot about the future lately, and what I actually want out of this hobby. I've had a great year so far, especially the six months I've been blogging but looking back at my posts, I realised something. I've had very little gaming this year, and that's a shame as I've always considered myself a gamer first and a painter second.

It isn't easy for me to get games, I don't like to play at GW stores, not until they start running veteran nights again. My local club is good but they get together on Fridays, which is often a busy time for me. Having kids ties up quite a bit of my leisure time and my gaming friends live over an hour away and have families, so getting time with them is tough.

All this has led to me getting very few games in, and it's something I want to rectify. I don't think I can really change any of the above, so I need a new avenue to explore and after a bit of thought I came up with tournaments. My lovely wife doesn't have a problem with me taking a weekend out every so often and I get quite a few games in a day or two.

The only issue is that in the past, I've always avoided them because of the competitive nature of these events. Now, I don't think I'm going to find any non-competitive tournaments and I can't expect other people to change, so it looks like I'm going to have to.

If you're going to do something, you'd better do it as well as you can - it's a phrase that's served me well over the years. I'm not going to become a power gamer using hardcore net lists, rather I want to try to use a themed guard force as well as I can. This means learning the game a lot more, learning the other armies and their play styles a lot more and learning how to use my army a lot more.

For those that follow my blog, don't worry, it's not going to become a tactical advice blog. I'm still going to posting my models, wip pics, the odd tutorial and an occasion thought or two but I'm also going to be posting more tactical and game reports. This actually works out quite well, with my upcoming 2010 special ops force, I'm going to have to put a lot more work into sculpting and converting and therefore more time between modelling posts.

So, here begins a new journey into a new aspect of the game that will hopefully end with me winning the grand tournament at warhammer world - Hey, you've got to aim high to hit high - lol.

In the current style of asking questions at the end of a blog to encourage discussion, I ask this - What are your favourite UK tournaments?, and if you don't have any, then why are you not into the tournament scene?


Rob said...

I can't say much on the UK tourney scene (I'm from the other side of the pond), but I've had some increasing luck with friendly 'long term scenario' type events.

Basically, objectives to win can be reached without major wins if you pick your battles (you do still have to win at some point). We're using the Mighty Empires tiles (b/c we didn't buy the 40k ones) and running an objective based tournament where the 1st person to claim a certain area wins. Finding the area is tricky since clues are hidden in other tiles. Battles are not always even based on how people split their armies up on the board. You could have a massive 2000pt behemoth or 2 smaller 1000pt divisions.

We did one of these about a year ago and it was a blast for the non-competative players and the competative ones alike. We're hoping to start a new one this month as well.

HuronBH said...

I want to wish you the best of luck. I have hit a similar position in life myself, where I just do not have time to game as much as I would like. I have been making time recently but with a new Cert class starting up soon (today actually) I am going to have less time for that. So to rectify that, I am starting to turn my mind towards tournament play again also.

I will offer whatever advice I can as you ask questions. As far as UK Tournaments, well I have never been to one... as I live in the US. So sorry can't help there. If you are ever over in the states there are quite a few Indy GT spring up lately that are really showing some promise.

Well good luck to you.

Blitzspear said...

Well it's been a few "decades" since i played 40k and there is not a lot of players near me (that i know of) so i'm planning to teach my eldest son to play. this may sound resonable but it's a risk as he is uber competative and is officially banned from playing games of any kind with the rest of the family as losing sends him mental. He's 8 btw and i'm hopeing that 40k may tone down his habit of going skitzoid at the slitest hint of loosing. If you do find a good tourny in the UK be sure to do a report on it for us ;)

NemFX said...

I hear you on the 'hardly getting to play' thing. The last full length game I've played was..

Third edition.

Col. Hessler said...

The few chances I have had to actually play 40K have been loads of fun. Where I live here in the states, there are lots of GW stores to choose from but I cannot stomach the whole "WWAAAAGGGHHH" environment for very long. The only other choice are a few "clickish" FLGS where you walk in and nobody even bothers to look up at you, let alone say hello.

I hope to eventually find a few people like me who want to enjoy the game but don't want to belittle the loser after every game just to make myself feel like I'm important.

Until then...I paint.

You should move to Chicago, we could start a kick-ass gaming club. LOL!!!


Admiral Drax said...

My in-laws are all in Chicago: if we ever moved there, I'd know there are some decent blog-types to catch a game with!

I agree with Hessler about a wariness of GW stores (although the friendliest and least intimidating one I've been in, by the way, was in Fox Valley Mall near Naperville...!), and I'm generally in a similar position re. gaming.

Vassal was simply fantastic before it was (reasonably enough) shut down, and I got quite a few great games in against 73rd, but my 40K mates are all over 100 miles away.

Still, I've finally got a car, and (at 29!) I'm taking my test at the end of the month, so if all goes well I'll pass and be able to (a) travel to mates more conveniently (wife/baby allowing) and (b) maybe look into a local club here in the Westcountry...but not too local as I don't want to run into any of my kids from school!

As for tournaments? Well, Mike the Merciless and I had our first a fortnight ago, and we both loved it: 'Calneage'- at Calne in Wiltshire. I'm not very competitive at all, and had to travel by train, so my small, relatively fluffy force was simply ideal, and playing four decent games in a day with a REALLY friendly atmosphere was great. I'd recommend it next year for anyone in the West...

- Chris.

Col. Corbane said...

I feel you pain guys, ain't it crazy

@Rob - those campaign weekends sound great, WW do them, so I might see if I can get tickets for the next one.

@Drax - I might see you at the next Calneage

CylonDave said...

Good luck with your quest. I am in a similar position, where I am getting older and not feeling the casual gaming part, but at the same time doing more hobby stuff. I've been lucky to have made lots of friends at the GW Bunker in my area, and I can tone out the younger crowds when possible. I seem to be getting in less and less games each time around now a days.

I jumped in on the tournament scene for 40K about a year and a half ago. I've played in 2 Ard Boyz tournaments and several local events in my area as well. My army of choice at the momemnt is a Themed Nurgle CSM force, and by theme I mean 1 tank and everyone else is walking. So I'm not power gaming in the least for the theme. Although I've learned to go into tournaments with an open mind, and an aittued of just going in for the games. If I win so be it, at least I get to play some games with my fully painted and based models. It's all about having fun, if someone else is there for something else, so be it. They can power game all they want, but when I can pull a win on a power gamer it makes me giggle. This years Ard Boyz for round 1 I came way with 2 wins and 1 loss, I think that was good for a themed all nurgle list.

IG in tournaments have an advantage that they have a new Dex, so you shouldn't have much of a problem adjusting your force to be compeditive and fun at the same time. IG has one of the most popular dex's in the tournament scene right now, so you should be alright. Just learn the ins and outs of your force, and have fun. At the same time keep an eye out on what you see at the events and learn how its being used. This way you can adjust your list to better effect in future events.

Good Luck in your adventure!

lone pilgrim said...

I'm in a very similar position to you regarding getting games in. My time is very restricted with work, other hobbies, social life, etc.

I tired of my local GW store when they relaxed the painting requirement and I feel too old to play against the younger kids in there. I also became dissatisfied playing against my main opponent when I realised we wanted different things out of the hobby.

I have contemplated your solution as it has a lot of advantages - you can pick the events which match your expectations, you can get half a dozen games played in just two days, and it doesn't take up much time over a year.

The only issue for me is cost. After the event entry fee I would need to pay for travel, accommodation and then miscellaneous spending.

Maybe next year...