Alright everybody we’re back and despite a new wave of possible spoilers hitting the internet the Forums have managed to not shit the bed too badly. Assuming the baseline levels of bed-shitting of course, they haven’t become a wondrous land of happiness and rainbows or anything. Let’s all be reasonable here. The new slightly more relaxed release schedule here so far is working out pretty well for me, I’m actually writing this ahead of schedule which is a new and exciting experience! Hopefully no new sudden explosions of internet rage happen between my writing this and my publication date. I’m sure if it does I’ll just throw in some comment here about it. I bet I can phrase it in the form of a Groucho Marx joke, that always seems to be the best way to handle these things. Something like “This morning I woke up and read a forum post in my pyjamas, how it got in my pyjamas I have no idea” or equally terrible. I’m sure it’ll be fine.
Part 3: Playing Different
It’s been a great week, everybody! This weekend just gone we played a team tournament at the local games shop in Dublin. The two Republic of Ireland WTC Teams, along with Team Northern Ireland, played against three “Mercenary” teams from the Irish meta. The atmosphere was fantastic, and I think it was the biggest tournament we’ve had in the shop. I’ll tell you one thing, a surefire way to ensure that you will take responsibility for your behaviour at a tournament is to write a series of articles on sportsmanship on a blog which most of your friends will read! Not willing to be branded as a hypocrite I naturally had to take my own advice, and I had a ball. As well as that, I went 2-1, which is my best tournament record to date!
Now I’ll admit that I was back to playing my Kreoss1 and Kreoss3 lists, with which I have months of practice, and as we’ve discussed before it’s easier to stay positive when you win a few games. But the determination to stay positive helped me to see my way to a win in my last round, and to keep my head up when an unwise quarter-of-an-inch movement brought an assassination crashing down on my head in the second round. The extra element that a team tournament brings was a help too, it mitigates your losses to know that your loss could be part of the overall strategy, and it keeps you from preening when you know that your win is just one and your team needs your support.
Part 2: SteamStorm And Beyond
In the first article of this pair, I talked a bit about how at the Irish Masters I was disappointed in my attitude. Because I really enjoy playing Warmachine and Hordes, I want others around me to do so too. This starts right where you live, if you bring a good disposition to a game then your opponent feels more like meeting you halfway. For many of us, particularly if things are not going our way, being sociable and “playing nice” might take a back seat to focusing on the win. I’m not saying don’t try to win, I’m saying if you find yourself in the middle or bottom bracket at a tournament, take a moment. Look at where you are. Surrounded by people who have been having the same kind of day or worse. Look at how many sour expressions there are. You’re all here to play a game you enjoy, so why shouldn’t it be pleasant however you do?
Too often, however, it isn’t great to be mid-table or low-table. As the day wears on, players start becoming more frustrated. I’ve seen some games where every single dice roll was the subject of exasperation by one player, naturally theirs were appalling and their opponent’s spectacular. As games wear on (and they do wear on, some of those later rounds seem much longer than two hours) players sometimes get distracted by their own gloom, if they don’t check out altogether. Giving up a game for lost is one of the only surefire ways to throw a game away in Warmachine. The moment when that happens is usually apparent even from a few tables away. Instead of the interplay between two engaged players, suddenly everything one player says it met with “Mmm-hmm”, “Sure, whatever”, “Armour 19, not that it matters with the way your dice have been going today”.
Hey folks! A couple book-keeping things to open with this week. This series has been going on for over a year now and I’ve written over 50 of them. That’s a good run. Unfortunately my year ahead looks to be significantly busier for me than the year already passed. That means I’m going to need to take a more relaxed publishing schedule for On the Forums. I’ll be switching to a bi-weekly format starting now, so the next article will be published on the 29th, which should help me keep writing these without being exhausted. I’ll also try and do more special editions when big news hits, like the Templecon Edition earlier this year, to supplement the absence of regular content. Who knows, this might actually allow me to write some other non-Forums articles. With that out of the way let’s get to the raving madness:
I’ve heard of a golden place, like a living Elysium, where all the Warmachine and Hordes players are relaxed and have a great time. Where rules calls are resolved with shrugs, smiles and amicable rolls of dice, rather than shrill summons of judges and bitter mumbling. It’s called the top tables, and I have glimpsed it in dreams and sometimes in the second round when I flounder and soon return to my natural home in the other half of the hall.
That other half, whether you refer to it as the drinkers’ bracket or the losers’ tables or whathaveyou, is a more grimdark place. You can generally cut the tension in the air with a knife. Every ability your opponent unveils on their bullshit 3 point model is more broken than the last. Sometimes they are actively adding new rules to the backs of their cards as you play. You can’t seem to select the right list, everything your opponent does nullifies your army. Your dice are against you, your opponent seems to know everyone on the surrounding tables and they agree with their rules calls (for our European friends, the bonus is that they are speaking a language you don’t understand!) rather than yours. With every loss you wonder why you play this game, and even the wins are bittersweet. You’re already losing, what does it matter?
I’m back dearest reader and this time I bring you a sampling from a broad range of internet warmachine Forums just to show you how much I care! This is our fiftieth installment after all so it’s important to select only the very best of weird for you to read about. I was hoping to have something for you in relation to the recent spoiling of the Cephalyx rules but so far everyone seems to be strangely positive about them. With the exception of one person insisting he’ll stop giving PP money because of what they did with the Cephalyx everyone has been really reasonable. Colour me surprised but pleased. Well done Forumites, you didn’t fuck up too bad!
Chapter One: The Relics of Saint Malathric
Part Ten: As A Dog To The Proverbial
In which Master Siskington is put in a position of responsibility against all better judgement.
The Bloodstone Marches sometimes possess a weird beauty, as the harsh spring recedes and the punishing summer starts to take hold. The wretched scrub takes on a vibrant hue, and the putrid corpses of animals and men that litter the plains often grow quite interesting plantlife. The jackals that roam in starving packs shed their winter coats and soon sport a charming shade of brown, allowing them to blend in with their surroundings and murder lone wayfarers. As our wagon wove its way across the wasteland, I sat up beside our driver and reflected on the changes that had come to the place since my last visit. Let it never be said I cannot appreciate something even if I hate very moment I spend with it.
“How much longer, squire?”