Friday, January 27, 2012

Dealing with *twitch* wargaming wthdrawals

That's right, I need my wargaming fix.  Unfortunately, I now live in an area where the closest "local" game store is about 30 miles away.  The real problem, though, is that they don't really have a web site and although I've been there about a dozen times, I still cannot find anyone with whom to play a game.  The regulars at the store clearly prefer playing 40k, and although I make sure to bring a 40k army with me every time, it seems to be quite the insular crowd.  So what's a guy to do?  While I play board games with colleagues at least once every week, I find my senses are dulled from a lack of wargaming and I feel less motivated to do things that I normally would enjoy doing.  Do you feel the same way sometimes?  What can we do about it?

1) Teach someone how to play your favorite miniatures game.
This is what I have found to be the best fix.  I have such a passion for Warmachine/Hordes that it's hard sometimes to hide it.  As soon as someone displays even the tiniest bit of interest in the hobby, I explode and tell them all about the universe, how fun it is, how great the models look, etc.  If you're finding that you need to get your wargaming fix, you should try sharing it with someone, see if you can get them interested, and maybe even teach them how to play!  It's always a good idea to have two (balanced) forces so that someone can learn to play without feeling like you're beating on them with a superior force.  When in doubt - give them the better match-up.  After all, if you can get them hooked, then you'll have a regular opponent to play against!

2) Write a blog.
Actually, no, don't do it.  It just makes it worse.  Trust me.

3) Make a gaming table.
This is a bit of a prerequisite for teaching someone to play in your own home.  I'm very glad that I made my own Warmachine/Hordes table so that I can share the game with friends and students in my own home, without having to travel to a game store.  While it's an advantage at a boarding school, it can also be great in your own home because it's sometimes easier to invite some friends over for beer and games than it is to get them to go to a gamestore (especially if they're not as hardcore about wargaming as you are).

4) Paint.
This is always the hardest thing for me.  I'm not a painter.  I enjoy the end result, but I'm always finding it difficult to just get started on painting my models.  If I'm left without the choice of playing games, however, the best use of time might be to get those models painted so that when you get around to playing a game, you'll have a fully-painted force!

5) Play against yourself.
Why not?  Sure, it sounds a bit depressing, but what better way is there to try a list than against yourself?  As long as you don't cheat yourself and play your best regardless, and don't let your own bias against a list get in the way (which is hard to do when they're both yours!), you can see what lists are capable of and you'll never be caught by surprise.  Instead of relying on tricks, surprises, or your opponent making a mistake, you genuinely play with a list to its highest strengths.  Plus, at the end, you'll always win!

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