‘ard Boyz 2011: The Bumpy Road

'ard BoyzI had all these intentions of going into ‘ard Boyz completely prepared and ready to fight my way to the top but somewhere along the way something changed. I had my list concept determined and was playing the hell out of my Marines so I’d know them inside and out. The lists always focused on a core utilizing Shrike, Assault Marines and Assault Terminators, the rest was adjusted as needed for whatever point value we were playing that day. Then one day I said the hell with it, I’m going to just show up and have fun.

What happened is I realized I was taking the game way too seriously and wasn’t having as much fun as I always had prior. Bad dice rolls on my part were making me angry, amazing saves by my opponent’s had me thoroughly annoyed and strategies of mine that were dismantled left me shamed. I was becoming so immersed in becoming a better player that the fun was just not there. I was no longer playing a casual Wednesday night game at my FLGS where I laughed at my horrible misfortune and cheered for my opponent’s amazing luck. Every game was a test and everything was rigorously evaluated which left no room for enjoyment unless it was all of my plans coming to fruition.

I want to be a better player. I’d like to win a tournament instead of being that guy who makes the top tables every few months and is the final roadblock for the tournament winner. However, I refuse to do this at the cost of my enjoyment of the game, and really those I’m playing. I’m by no means giving up my pursuit of betterment but I’m just not going to take it so seriously. I suppose that makes me a casual competitive gamer and honestly, that works for me.

This Saturday is ‘ard Boyz and despite my recent realization I am going with the desire to win and to be more than a stepping stone for the top three players of the day. I may have lost myself as a player for a while there but it wasn’t without its gains. The difference is I’m not going to let the outcome of a game, or games, dictate my enjoyment for the day.


    Tbh I have seen you from the start of when you were at crossroads and you played to have fun then. I watched that attitude change to wanting to play better and be competitive and I loved watching you really crank up your game. But, you never seemed like the hyper competitive gamer and I am glad you are moving back toward the fun side. But I am sure with even non optimal non competitive lists you will do great now that you have the knowledge and skill. Play and do what makes you happy!

    • Thanks.

      I’m by no means giving up on playing competitively but I’m just not going to let it dictate my fun. It’s easy to get caught up in the competitiveness of the game but for me it works better as a passive goal and not something achieved to the exclusion of all else.

      We’ll see what happens Saturday.

  • ming from b&c

    As for me, my feeling is at our level, winning also depends on your willing to make the investments.  Games like 40K, MTG, and others are by their nature arms races.  I’m very pragmatic that I can’t win more than I do, without more investments.  For me the investments are real, in both time, and in materials.  You are either in the arms race, or you are not.  I try to straddle that line and keep to my standards and storyline.  It is tough to do. 

    • Anonymous

      Ming that is a fantastic analogy.

    • I agree. That’s what I had been trying to do, step up my level of game play with what I have or could get without dropping a bunch of cash. Even having all the right tools only gets you so far.

  • Anonymous

     I would say your greatest attribute is your well rounded. Good player? Check. Good looking army with fluff and all? Check. Contributes to the community? Check. You bring a lot to the game, hobby and community. 

    Gold Star for you.

    • Thanks.

      There’s always that desire to be better at it though, be it painting or playing, it’s what makes us human.

  • ming from b&c

    Lets have some fun in October….mirror match tournament using ORKS….if we keep the points moderate, I bet there are enough around to stock those who don’t have them….then you can see how you will do when the playing field is level…all you have then are your tactics and dice…

    • Neat idea but something like that gives an inherent advantage to the Ork players. Not exactly a level playing field.

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