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Aversion to returning to 40K?


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Yesterday I went to my best friend's birthday party. For anyone who saw my post about Song of Blades and Heroes this is the same friend I've been playing that with. He probably wouldn't have had a birthday party if not for his girlfriend but I think he had a good time. She had the great idea to have a gaming party (specifically tabletop) since lately with a little push from me he's been getting into them.

 

Between my wife and I we have quite a few games. In the end we brought Song of Blades and Heroes, What Do You Meme, Disturbed Friends, Star Realms, Munchkin, and by special request even though we knew we weren't going to play it Risk. These were just the games we brought though, almost everyone brought at least one game. Oddly enough the only games that were actually played were Song of Blades and Heroes, Twister, Chess, and Friday the 13th on XBox. So it was a pretty eclectic game night.

 

Now we're getting to the meat of this post. Since I was bringing a miniature skirmish game I decided to bring all my painted miniatures to show to a friend who is thinking about painting. When I pulled out all of my completed pieces he insisted I show them to one of his friends who was also at the party. 

 

I showed off my work and ended up talking with this guy for about an hour. We talked painting, Wargamming, role playing games, and what we were currently playing. As we talked he admired the GW Cadiens I had finished. 

 

He told me years ago he had played Warhammer 40K. This of course lead to a long discussion about GW. The one thing that kept coming up though was his desire to play again but his reluctance to do so. I've met quite a few old 40K players recently and I've noticed that so many of them would love to play again but don't. 

 

I know 40K is expensive and time consuming but I've never encountered a game with some many old players unwilling to return. This game seems to have cornered the market on players unwilling to return.

 

Is it just the expense and time consumption keeping them away? Are there any other games out there with this same problem?

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When I first moved to Denver, I noticed the GW store on Broadway and decided to have a look.   While I was browsing, someone said, "Hey, look, there's a car with a Reaper window decal!"

Well, GW certainly has a reputation for driving old time players away.  I think you can only have to buy so many new rules editions, new codexes and new units, before you realize the train never stops

I did buy Space Hulk when it became available again, and was cheered by the idea that they were going to reactivate some of the specialist games. And then I rejoiced when I heard that Warhammer Que

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I do not game, played a few 40k and WHFB battles in my youth, but I like to paint and collect.

 

However, I think that the biggest problem with GW Games are caused by the changes that are made by releasing new stuff, often before all army books for the earlier version were even published.

And then making units/weapons obsolete so you needed to start over again..

 

 

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Well, GW certainly has a reputation for driving old time players away.  I think you can only have to buy so many new rules editions, new codexes and new units, before you realize the train never stops and you want to get off.  

 

I think all games that constantly produce new rules editions, or produce new units that have more power for less points so you keep having to buy those to stay competitive, suffer this disillusionment in their gamers to some extent. 

Edited by Chris Palmer
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The funny thing about it is, it doesn't seem to extend to the RPGs! I've had 4 or 5 campaigns now that were a whole table  of burned out 40k players who were totally up for playing rogue trader or dark heresy. So they still love the game, but just don't want to deal with it's nonsense.

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53 minutes ago, Werkrobotwerk said:

The funny thing about it is, it doesn't seem to extend to the RPGs! I've had 4 or 5 campaigns now that were a whole table  of burned out 40k players who were totally up for playing rogue trader or dark heresy. So they still love the game, but just don't want to deal with it's nonsense.

Or you could say, they still love the setting. Not necessarily the game.

 

Those are different rulesets.

 

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Maybe I'm naive but it just seems to me there are so many burnt out players shouldn't there be more old games. A lot of the ones I've met still have their old books and armies. I cant help thi king they should be able to find someone to play the old editions and rules sets with.

 

2 hours ago, Chris Palmer said:

 I think you can only have to buy so many new rules editions, new codexes and new units, before you realize the train never stops and you want to get off.  

That's what the major factor is for a lot of them. They have a lot of stuff but they reached a point where they said enough is enough. They still have a desire to play though, enough to even consider getting back on the train.

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More that the two next-to-most-recent versions of 40K had incredibly bad rules.

 

At an incredibly high price.

 

That encouraged huge armies of incredibly expensive figures.

 

That was written in such a way as to invalidate armies that people had been working on for a generation.

 

It was followed with the crap fest that was Age of Sigmar.

 

I have hear good things about the new edition of 40K - from people that hated the two preceding editions.

 

But for me it is two editions too late - I sold off my Dark Angels army shortly after learning that The Danger was on the way.

 

The Auld Grump - why keep minis for a game that I had not played in ten years?

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I'm another 40k player that won't go back.

 

I started with Rogue Trader and hung in through much of second.  By that time, my friends had all gone off to college, the Army, or simply quit the game so I faded away.  I came back for fifth edition and got four whole games in before sixth was announced.  Combine that with the annual price increases, times when the GW website offered bundles for higher than MSRP--which just takes stones the size of a dwarf planet, and I had my fill of the company.

 

The fans were something else.  There were some cool guys out there.  Guys who just wanted to push little men, women, and aliens around the table and roll some dice, but there were also the "other guys".  Every hobby has 'em, but they just seem so much worse in 40k.  The usual stereotypical lack of hygiene, the ones who believe you are "insulting" them (true conversation!) if your army isn't painted and based to their standard, etc. and it's just not worth it.

 

When visiting the youngest and the (now ex) son-in-law he dragged me to the local hobby shop in town.  He mentioned that he was looking into starting 40k, and I warned him off it.  I told him no matter what he thought it would cost, it would be at least three times that by the time he added rules, codex, army, paints, etc. and then it would only be a couple years until he had to do it again to have a chance at winning some games.  He didn't buy in--and I proudly(?) steered someone away from our hobby.  ::(:  That's not quite true, I tried to steer him toward X-Wing but he wasn't interested.

 

I look at it like I look at my alcohol indulgences from my youth--Yeah, I did it.  I thought it was fun. I spent hundreds (or thousands) of dollars on it.  I loved it then, but I just can't go back.  It would be so much worse this time, and who knows if get out with my sanity (or pocketbook) intact.  I don't have any crazy exes in my past, but I sometimes wonder if the idea of getting back together with "that one" might be the best comparison.

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28 minutes ago, Rat13 said:

Maybe I'm naive but it just seems to me there are so many burnt out players shouldn't there be more old games. A lot of the ones I've met still have their old books and armies. I cant help thi king they should be able to find someone to play the old editions and rules sets with.

 

The group I used to play with in the 90s back in CA still plays 40k 2ed, or so they tell me. 

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These days my wargame ruleset preferences have gone in other directions.  As a few examples, alternating unit activations and attacks that resolve in a maximum of two dice rolls.  The only way 40k would bring me back would be to change the core game engine, but then it wouldn't be 40k anymore.

 

Edited by Jeneki
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22 minutes ago, Jeneki said:

As a few examples, alternating unit activations and attacks that resolve in a maximum of two dice rolls.

Song of Blades and Heroes is a skirmish game that may be right up your alley. It's cheap, has a simple ruleset, and it keeps you engaged even when it's not your turn.

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Rrrgh. 

Second edition Dungeons and Dragons was loads of fun... until they adopted the idea that they could support a large corporation by simply producing splatbook after splatbook, more or less forever.

GW took this reasoning to the next level by simply requiring a rulebook AND a series of subsidiary army books to play, AND changing the rulesset periodically, AND changing things up even between editions. It is a blatant marketing strategy intended to keep you buying GW product more or less forever until you wise up and walk away, and by then they've already lured two younger ones in to replace you. Change, imbalance, and uncertainty are the order of the day. Oh, yeah, plus really high prices.

Given this, I'd be surprised if older gamers WEREN'T wary.

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I could use quotes from a bunch of others that already posted for my GW and 40k experiences. Started with Rogue Trader and expanded to Warhammer 3rd while in high school. For about 15 years GW games were a huge part of my life. I gave up on 40k and Warhammer because of the combo of toxic corporate actions, expense and being tired of rules changes that never really fixed anything. I have a lot of minis for both games most close to 20 years old.

 

3 hours ago, Jeneki said:

These days my wargame ruleset preferences have gone in other directions.  As a few examples, alternating unit activations and attacks that resolve in a maximum of two dice rolls.  The only way 40k would bring me back would be to change the core game engine, but then it wouldn't be 40k anymore.

 

 

This is probably the main reason why I won't go back to GW now. I found my preferred rules for Warhammer style games 10 years ago and I'm sticking with them. For 40k I know of a few interesting alternatives but I just never really got into them. We used to play a ton of Mordheim but when I played it last year the turns were clunky and slow compared to what I'm used to now. I may buy a few GW minis now and then and unlike many I never sold most of mine but I've lost my love for the rules and I'm not fond of the grim dark everything is hell and war version of the fluff. 

 

That said if somebody near me wanted to play I probably would. I'm desperate for any gaming. I feel like an abused junky, I'll even take a GW game over no game at all. :lol:

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I was under the impression that 8th edition 40K was actually getting a lot of old players back into the game. It certainly appears to be selling well for GW.

I've played a few games of 8th, and I rather like the new streamlined rules. They've also started to make it more accessible; if you're curious to try it out, the First Strike intro set is cheap and comes with everything needed to play, including some very nice models and a paper gaming mat. Then there's Shadow War: Armageddon, which is a seperate skirmish game that's based on the old Necromunda rules which only needs a single box of troops. And if you decide to make the leap and start an army, the Start Collecting boxes and various board games offer significant savings.

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