Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Hobby Fervor, Community Understanding, and a Real World Economy

Unless you have been living under a rock this week, you know that GW is once again showing strong evidence that it actually wants to run itself into the ground.  It is getting ugly.  Models made of cheaper materials (metal to resin) that are getting price increases.  Embargos on international sales from discount independent retailers.  Price "taxes" (i.e. inequities in pricing in relation to exchange rates) to some southern hemisphere countries.  It is looking pretty ugly, indeed. 

On top of that, gas prices are on the rise due to unrest in the middle east.  In the US, the overflowing Mississippi River is causing costs on domestic materials to rise. 

So, where do we balance fervor for the hobby and understanding financial issues amongst community members? 

I personally could care less about the color of models. If you want to have pink Ultramarines or blue Blood Angels, that is your right.  They are your models.  You bought them.  I don't have a right to make a big deal about that.  I personally, want my armies to look nice, but could care less for following strict fluff guidelines unless that is my specific aim (like with my Sanguinary Guard army).  That said, I know that some people really harp on a player for playing an army that isn't especially fluffy in regards to the hobby. 

I do however, draw the line at WYSIWYG.  I think at the bare minimum, a player should have correctly modeled weapons on their units or at least have consistent conversions done to show that the unit is in line across the army for the use of a specific weapon.  This cuts down on errors in-game and on cheating. 

This leads me to the meat of my point here.  Is it socially acceptable for a player to use a single collection of models to play multiple armies?  I think, within reason, yes.  This is basically only possible with marine chapters.  I think it is totally cool to use the same models to play across multiple codexes.  I am a poor, poor elementary teacher with a kid on the way.  I don't have a fat hobby budget.  I do what I can to reduce costs and still have fun in the hobby.  I think it is okay for anyone else to do the same.  My counts-as Space Wolves army is made using my Black Templar models and includes fluff and conversions to make the theme work.  I this is totally acceptable as I don't want to spend additional money on the exact same models just to have a different paint job.  It also provides a creative approach to an army.  Again, there is a line to be drawn here.  If you are trying to use Tau on a consistent basis to play Tyranids or something,  I would have a hard time.  If you were simply proxying models until you purchased additional models, I wouldn't have a problem. 

So, where do we as a community fall on the issue of allowing players to be financially responsible IRL in regards to playing 40k?  I am interested to hear your thoughts in light of GW's ridiculous new policy/announcements.

Other useful articles:
Five ways to be a good loser
What Makes an Army Good?


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Student Teacher said...

I'm with you. I have a pretty extensive Space Wolf army, and I love the boys in 3+ armor. I would love to collect a bunch of different chapters, but there is no way I am going to buy like sets of Land Raiders or Rhinos or even Tac Marine boxes. I am totally for using my Wolves as different chapters (I own all the space marine codices). I usually play "friendly" games so we bend the rules a bit on WYSIWYG.

Good article, I'm looking forward to seeing what other people say.

Dave said...

I see your point about friendly games. If I were to play a good friend who I know, I would allow more loose play with models, however when I go to game night at my FLGS against people I don't know well, I expect there to be some form of understanding that you should bring the correct models. I know that sounds odd, but I guess it boils down to more easily trusting friends than strangers.

Student Teacher said...

I totally understand that. I guess what I'd do is bring a SW list as an alternate list. If everyone at the FLGS had a problem with my playing my "Wolf Templars" I'd fall back on the Space Pups.

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