Monday 8 July 2013

Ranting.........Warhammer elitism

There is nothing more in this hobby that annoys me more than another player telling me that my army list is "crap" because it doesn't include the latest tournament combinations. We all have parts of the hobby that we hate. For some it might be RAW vs RAI. Others it might be the ever increasing "money grabs" by GW or like for me, being subjected to competitive sneering.
This article might sound hypocritical but I hope to make it clear that what I am talking about is more of the attitude of some players. Don't get me wrong, I am a fan of competitive play and strong believe in making army lists that might include "bombs" in the name of list diversity. However, there are a few things that get the blood boiling. Let's look at a few:

Your army list is crap
I remember when Siceralc and I first got back into the hobby back last year and we decided to play our first 1500 point game. We were approached by a "tournament player" who couldn't even start to consider why Siceralc was using a Leman Russ Punisher. He used phrases such as "but on the tournament scene they are never used" or "trust me, as a tournament player I know what I'm talking about." He honestly treated us as if we were second class hobbyists. How could we have even come to the thought of purchasing it in the first place? Don't worry though, he was there to save us..........not.

Siceralc: Mate, good thing he did, or we'd have never got where we are today. If he hadn't told me it was crap, I never would have developed this festering hatred for sweat-drenched neackbeards that drives me.

I'm sure a lot of you may have come across such instances in and around your hobby progress. It leads to the question: Is there a class divide within the hobby? If so, who rules it? Well the tournament players seem to think they do and I tell you one thing.......they really don't. One good example of this is the argument I constantly hear about Crisis suits vs Broadsides. I use Broadsides because I like the new models and I genuinely believe that they are better. I would never press that opinion onto another player who decides to use Crisis suits but I've been lectured otherwise. 

Siceralc: That's probably because Broadsides dominate the table. And the little girly-men who want to convince (read:force) you not to use them know this and are terrified.

I think the entire "meta play" is becoming a GW legend of old. If there is one trend showing through 6th edition it is balance. When Eldar first came out the Wave Serpent was deemed "unusable" and "not worth it's points" by a number of competitive players and now suddenly it is the most "broken
and "OP" unit in the codex. Another example is Tau Sniper Drones. Getting changed to Pulse rifles made them "absolutely worthless" yet now I see them littering the playing field alongside Ethereal's to gain more shots. My point is that this whole "competitive" elitism is really a load of crap.

Siceralc: Goes to show just how much your 'independent' tournament player actually believes in the indpendence of thought  that goes toward discovering the above combos. Give it a few weeks, and a visit by the Queen of the Neckbeards at our table and you'll see Spawn bombing in vogue.

Tournament precedence:

This is an example of what I mean:

Another example is about the Infiltrate USR being passed from an IC onto a squad that doesn't have it. In my opinion it cannot be passed on due to a number of reasons which I won't go into. The issue is that at tournaments (in my area) it has been allowed to. Now If I were to raise the issue with a judge (which is my right to) and explained my argument then quite usually "precedence" would mean the rule to pass whether or not the rule is correct or not. I'm not going to badger the whole process but I think when it comes down to an argument such as this, rolling a dice to determine the outcome is the fairest for both sides. 
Siceralc: I know there are arguments for allowing the TO to make a decision on something like this, but the BLEEDING RULEBOOK QUITE LITERALLY SAYS YOU SHOULD ROLL A DICE IF YOU CAN'T AGREE ON THE RULE. F*#K.

Sorry. But there are some players we all know who need to take a step back from their fantasy worlds and realise they're playing a game with tiny toy soldiers, and at the end of the day they really shouldn't need to exploit every omission, mis-wording or typo to get their rocks off.

We have one guy at our local GW who believes that if the model doesn't have frag grenades hanging off a Space Marine then you can't use them. What....a....load....of....crap. Now of course only about one in a thousand gamers would ever have an issue such as this but it definitely exists. Another good example is conversions. Something as simple as myself converting a Falcon into a Wave Serpent (by replacing the Pulse Laser with a second Scatter Laser) led to a few raised eye brows and unending questioning about "proxies" not being allowed. Sometimes leads me to wonder just how far people are willing to go to protest deviation from the GW path......

The most important factor within the game. Sore losers are one thing but smug winners are worse. At the recent fantasy doubles that Siceralc and I attended we came across a number of players who were asking for trouble. We were both relatively new to fantasy and as such were a bit slow on the rules but somehow we were accused of cheating because of a missed rule....amazing. Another example is of players who quite literally will laugh in your face when you lose to them. These types of gamers are usually known around the store and always seem to never have a game lined up....I wonder why.

Don't even go there.

Final Comments:
Well the ranting is over and I'm sure people will have mixed views upon the different topics. I think one thing that we can agree on is that attitude it everything in this hobby. Helping those who might not know the rules or need tips of their painting is really an obligation upon those more experienced. Being Nice irrelevant of if you are a pro tournament player or just a local gamer at the store will make it a better environment for those around you. I will say one final thing though. My favourite gamers are the Dark Eldar players who have ridden the storm of "6th ed is no place for vehicles" and still regularly come out on top (Yeah Dark Eldar!).

We would love the hear about any stories that anyone has about blood boiling situations. Leave them in the comments below.



  1. Good article! Speaking as someone who has never played in a tournament and is really not fussed about doing so, my response to people telling me how to play would be a polite but firm "f$%k off and let me play my game, and take the reek of BO with you!". When I play Ruben, it's all about variety and fun - that way, every game is different. That being said, I would never tell anyone else how to play and if fierce competition is your bag, so be it - just don't expect to play me more than once...

    One last thing, I love the idea of neckbeards, I'll be on the lookout.


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