Thursday, October 10, 2013

The Long View


Fly Molo is, I dare say, back. I should be back to my one post every other day or so clip that I was getting accustomed to before all heck broke loose all over my life... but I wouldn't have it any other way.
Today I'm writing about the "Long View" and keeping my eyes on the proverbial prize.

We just wrapped up the Michigan GT and I considered it a huge success. I was pleased with every aspect and did not read a bad thing written about it. I was so pleased with it that I'm already looking to next year.
I write this blog as just me. I'm not trying to act better than I am. I'm not trying to pretend I play a whole bunch of games or play in a lot of grand tournaments. In fact, the Michigan GT was my first non-game store event I've attended. I imagine there's a lot of other semi-serious Warhammer players out there that have similar life circumstances.

Other blogs out there seem to be written for this serious other gamer. WAAC, rules lawyers that seemingly have all the money in the world to purchase every new competitive army as it comes out. Reading those other blogs can leave you feeling a little amateur. Amateur at best. Afraid at worst. What if you go to the next big event (your first) and get laughed off of the table for bringing your "army?" I mean, who the hell plays SPACE MARINES anyways?! Doesn't Heldrake just invalidate that book?! COME'ON! We all know Wave Serpents just rule! Right?! AND RIPTIDES! Don't you even internet!? Lulzz...

A really awesome guy from our gamer group named Corey came to the GT without his army. He didn't sign up because he doesn't get to play that often. He's got some painted armies, played in our last Apoc game and is a great guy. He often contributes to our gaming group Facebook page and I'm happy to have him affiliated with us. But he didn't want to play in the GT. He said to me something along the lines of "I was worried everyone would be so cut-throat and I would bog the day down not knowing the rules so well."
As soon as we rolled the die for turn 1, he said "I should have played. I had no idea it would be like this."
And he should have. But hindsight is 20/20 and he didn't know what it would really be like. So we made a pact that we would get anyone willing up to speed for the next Michigan GT. That means army selection, building, painting, display boards, practice and motivation. We'll lean on each other. Encourage. Inspire.
So this is the beginning of that. The long view.

A hair under a year away, we are going to stroll in with some beautiful armies. Some killer display boards. Some refined lists that we know well. Strong understandings of the rules. Positive attitudes. Monster Energy Drinks. Top 10 finishes. Oh no you didn't!

So this is what that entails:
1. Determination. I understand that a year is a long amount of time AND a short amount of time. I am planning on being there for those 2 days with everything that I wanted to accomplish completed. I will put myself in the position to succeed.

2. Practice. I need more games. And not just any games, but games involving the army I am going to play. Jesse Zischke won best general at the GT and has the privilege of being my best friend. He recently wrote an article on DFG about playing an army that no-one really thought would be good and just kicked some serious butt. The secret to his success is a simple one: He practiced over and over again with the army he was going to use. He didn't army hop every month. He didn't scrap his list after a few bad games. He knew what he was going to play about 6 months prior to the event and played the crap out of it. Minor tweeks here and there and soon he had a well oiled machine that he knew like the back of his hand. He didn't forget his rules, even though his opponents did. No way he was missing a Preferred Enemy: Daemons reroll. Or deploying his servo-skulls. Or that, gasp, those Doomfists are Force Weapons. He knew what tool was for what job and he could plan ahead. I actually credit my four wins to something similar. In all of my mishaps on the way to the GT, forgetting some models was probably a blessing in disguise. Instead of running 3 Daemon Princes will a thousand rules each, I ended up falling back on models I've used over and over again. In turn, I knew exactly what each was capable of and what to expect. I went in being only unfamiliar with a few rules/mechanics and made less mistakes than I would have normally.

So back to practice. I'm going to make a list, refine it over and over and practice.

3. Motivation. I am going to motivate my friends to new levels of awesomeness. I want to function with them like a team. I want to make shirts. I want them to hold me to the same level of awesomeness. I want us to be proud of what we accomplished. (ha, accomplished, its like I'm talking about something important!) If I can keep an excited and positive attitude, those around me should feel and feed off of those vibes. And they'll put off those vibes and we'll be an epicenter of positivity that will affect those around us. It will lead to good things.

And good things shall come. I don't get a lot of time out to do stuff like this, so I want to make this count. Sure I get a game here and there. And once in a while I make it to a game store for a Saturday event. But this is going to be my big thing. My hobby World Series. As a bonus, its local.
Thanks for reading! Stay tuned.

PS: The Allen Neighborhood Center wrote us a great "Thank You" card for the donation from the GT. Thanks again everyone who bought tickets!


  1. Totally agree here, after a few games with tau, Eldar, and new marines with some borrowed models I am heading back to Blood Angels and a lot of practice practice practice! (And Mephiston)... Good Luck for the next 12 months!

    1. Thanks for the best wishes. Good luck to your Blood Angels as well... unless we meet on the battle field, in which case; BLOOD FOR THE BLOOD GOD!!!

  2. Sounds like a plan! The only modification I would suggest is to not lock yourself into an army list right away. Try out lots of different units and combos. I rarely play the same list more than a few times, and often they are large changes. But they are always Eldar. As a result I am able to experience how different units interact and strengthen each other. So when I do make a tournament list and "tweak" it my tweaking is based not only what units do on paper but what they do on the table as well.

    1. Again, probably the only reason I did as well as I did was because I ended up fielding mostly units that I was very familiar with, even though they might not be the "best." Paper is totally different than the battle field.

  3. Good article. My two 'teef: Start with a foundation, paint it, love it, nurture it. Then add/subtract to it element by element under controlled conditions.

    I will give you an analogy. If I was writing meds for someone who was having trouble on their current meds, I would most likely not change ALL their meds all at once unless absolutely medically necessary.

    Instead, I would add/subtract/decrease one thing at a time and observe (ie play games) how this affects the whole.

    Otherwise I would have no idea what actually caused the improvement/decline because I introduced too many variables all at once.

    Anyway, hope that makes sense, you caught me at work and I am all in the clinical zone right now.


    1. That is a great analogy. That's probably how I am going to approach things right from the start. My core is going to be: Chaos Marines/Chaos Daemons Allies, where I WILL be using at least a Daemon Prince, Great Unclean One and a Heldrake. The rest is up in the air at this point :)

  4. Good stuff! I don't get to play in a lot of events or have the resources to pick up anything I want, so I take this approach too.

    Number 2 is a big one for me. Experience and knowing what your army is capable of is a huge part of planning a strategy, IMHO. Knowing how this compares with the enemy and being able to judge relative situations (as far as you can I a dice game) is something I'm working on all the time.

    1. Realitivty is a gigantic concept that applies to 40k but is largely ignored by the Internet talking heads, where they look at nearly everything in a vacuum. Great response!

  5. This was an outstanding, inspiring article This is what it's all about right here: "So we made a pact that we would get anyone willing up to speed for the next Michigan GT. That means army selection, building, painting, display boards, practice and motivation. We'll lean on each other. Encourage. Inspire." I probably won't make it to Michigan, but count me in. Looking forward to following your progress.