Wednesday, June 3, 2015

40K Hobby: Taking a Refreshing Step Back from Competitive Play

Me and 40K Competitiveness are Separated
 Yeah, I've come to the epiphany that to enjoy 40K, to have real unadulterated fun with the game, one does not need to compete. I have been traveling down this road gradually for the past year and have come full circle from wanting to compete in tournaments to now wondering why in the heck does any player have to compete to have fun in this vast and deep hobby? I've not totally abandoned the tournament scene, per say, as I do enjoy a good competitive challenge now and then but for the most part I am personally done with that. And what a refreshing decision it has been. No longer is there a need to spend hours trying to figure out the latest and best tournament list and no longer is there a need to fret needlessly over buying/painting new and better models for an army. Not only that but games are more enjoyable now. I just don't care if a game is lost anymore, fun is now the primary objective. It is a liberating experience.

What happened?
I place the blame squarely on  Gamesworkshop and it's aggressive marketing. Codexes, models, dataslates, source books - they are all being thrown at us at breakneck speed. It is just too much to take in over the course of a year so I just gave up on trying - and boy did that feel good! I don't blame GW for doing what they are doing, they are a company and companies do their best to make money which I suppose this new marketing strategy does for them or they wouldn't be doing it.

I for one don't care about most of what they release anymore unless it has to do with one of the three factions that I play. Tournament players,  on the other hand, have to ingest everything and stay on top of new information or they start to lose the competitive edge.

That is my main reason for no longer caring about competitive 40K, it is no fun to have to cram new information into my skull every freak'n month. Well, that is not the only reason for not caring, I honestly can't say that I enjoyed the frequent negative experiences so often found in the tournament scene. Some people aren't bothered by that but I am - I want to have fun first and foremost.

GW is not in the business for competitive players.
We keep hearing GW say that they are a beer & pretzels model company first and foremost, meaning they do not support competitive play. I am not sure how much revenue they get from tournament folks but I'd imagine it is a lot. However, I'd also imagine that the casual side of the hobby is a lot bigger, which is the reason that GW continues to ignore competitive style play. So why fight it? Kudos to those that put together formats so that tournaments can be played with the current 40K system, it is a lot of hard work and they should be thanked. But from now on it is just casual games for the author (mostly).

Have any of you guys made a similar shift in your hobby? 
I'm curious to learn which way the hobby community is gravitating towards?