Wednesday, June 5, 2013

What kind of player are you?

Ready yourself, shit's about to get deep.

There's 4 camps for me in terms of table-top games:
  • The story-driven casual player who likes to bring one of each unit, regardless of their effectiveness and adhere to cinematics and fluff.
  • The competitive player who min-maxes his list, picks only the most points effective and stellar units for the purpose of winning games.
  • The WAAC player is a competitive player but will do anything to win.  This includes cheating, calling the judge for random shit, being a horrible sportsman, running the clock, and is generally the type that gives competitive players a bad name.
  • And then there's me.  I have no idea what happened over the years, but I think I'm somewhere between casual and competitive now.  Probably around ~5 years ago, I was definitely the competitive player:  Taking only the best choices without looking at anything else that's ineffective.  If Dark Eldar came out then, I would of probably went pure Venomspam.

However, something happened to my personality between then and now and I think it's changed for the better.  Shhh.. I'll tell you a secret:  I started off this hobby being very casual, only playing with what I like, loving the fluff, never fielding an army if it's not painted, and enjoying every facet of the hobby.  Sometime around the time where I'm constantly getting my teeth kicked in by better players using min-maxed armies like Nidzilla and Eldar, I changed.  If I started at year 1, my second year was devoted to becoming a better player.

Given my personality, this seems fitting because I'm by nature a min-maxing Tuner Spike.  From year 2 to year 7, I became a very good player.  During that time, I attended and won a lot of tournaments, placed well in many GTs and become to go-to person at local shops for strategy and tactics.  I also taught GW Academy during some of these years and I'm actually quite proud having introduced, taught and mentored many fine tournament players today.  I still get emails from them from time to time to talk about the hobby and how things have changed since I moved to the West Coast.

At year 8, something changed.  I refused to play the units I thought were lame fluff wise or didn't look good on the table top.  I found myself running themes like Kabal-only and no weird Haemonculi shit.  Hell, I don't own a single Thunderwolf because I think the idea of Space Marines riding giant wolves is a crapmix of Sci-fi and Fantasy.  Even today, I own a single constructed Venom lol.

I look back and see what has happened in the last 5 years and I see the following:  I started working at Blizzard (where a lot of people play casually), I got married, I got a house, and I'm looking to have kids in the near future.  Could this be me maturing as a gamer?  Or am I just getting old?  I find myself focusing more on the design of the units and talking about how things should be a lot more.  Part of this is because I work in the gaming industry, but maybe the other part is that I just don't find cutthroat games fun anymore.  Shit, maybe some day I'll paint again.

What about you guys?  How do you play your hobby?

13 comments:

Truthahn said...

Basically the same here mate.

Greg Johnson said...

I went through a similar process - I started out playing to win with friends, and carried that through into tournaments when we'd discovered them. But after a while I got sick of playing the same opponents in cut-throat games using rock-hard armies, and pointedly changed my approach. Nowadays if I do well in a tournament, it's largely by accident. I think I am a much happier gamer than I was back when I wanted to win.

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HERO said...

Yes!

Valegorn said...

With me it was somewhat of a bell curve. I started out loving the models, taking only things that looked good and/or loved the fluff. Then I graduated high school, started being more involved in my local gaming store, and I got competitive. Then after a few years I noticed the same people would show up, I got to know who was a good sport and who wasn't. Then I just got board with it. Winning didn't taste as sweet as it once did, and I fell into the hobby portion more of than anything else. I still went to tournaments but I aimed to win best painted and best sport award, I'm married now and I just had my first daughter three days ago (Yay), but the fun parts of the hobby are what interest me most. Having fun is my goal, and finding others who want to have fun are my goals now. I still bust out a hard core list now and then, but only with those who I know would enjoy it.

HERO said...

Well said, and I agree with you 100%.

Blightlord said...

You've grown up. Like a lot of us. We just want to have fun and enjoy the good company and fair competition that our hobby provides. Enjoy Larry!

HERO said...

Who do I owe the pleasure?

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Brian said...

Same here

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