Our last poll concerned the idea of playing a game of 40k with armies that were built for you. The idea here was that I wanted to balance the teams of an Apocalypse campaign that I’d host by supplying both the army lists and the models for those teams. That way, everyone could just show up and play without worrying about list creation, model purchases, or whether their team would be up to snuff.
The results of this poll, more than any other I’ve run so far, surprised me, and you can see them below:
Of the four available answers, I see one as a Strongly Disagree, (“I wouldn’t be interested..”) another as a Indifferent (“I dunno…”), another as a Slightly Agree (“It could be fun…”) and the last as a Strongly Agree (“It sounds great!”). My–perhaps naive–expectations would be that people would like this idea, so I thought I’d see a bunch of people leaning that direction.
Instead, I got almost the opposite. A full 35% of people claimed they wouldn’t be interested in such a game at all, while only 7% thought it was a great idea. The good news is that, f the remaining 58%, most of those were optimistic that it could be fun if it was done correctly.
So, I s’pose it wasn’t all negative, but it does leave me wondering why things went the way they did. Sadly, I didn’t get much in the way of comments as to why people thought it was a bad idea. The only comments I did receive were somewhat skeptical (though optimistic) that such a game could work out–and they provided some nice alternatives to how to make it work.
Without any real opinions to go on, I’m going to throw out some possibilities of why I think so many people might be leery of playing a game with pre-built armies:
- It is out of their comfort zone. Some people like to play specific styles of armies (shooty, deathstar, hordes, h2h, etc.), and know that they prefer these to other styles. Allowing someone else to make their list for them might force them to play a style they don’t like.
- It removes a sense of self. People can become very entwined with their armies and their lists. Some people go so far as to play a single list for years without modifying it, so asking them to play a different unit, much less a different army, might make them a bit uncomfortable. Furthermore, this is a multi-faceted hobby, so if the models you’re playing with are provided for you, then that means that HQ model you spent months converting/painting is sitting on a shelf in neglect…
- Lack of familiarity. Not everyone knows every codex (I dare say very few of us do). So it goes without saying that to commit to playing a random army that was made for you might mean you’re playing with a list that you have no idea what it does. This might put you at a disadvantage, and perhaps increase your chance of losing.
I can’t say for certain why people weren’t enamoured with the idea. Perhaps it wasn’t anything as sinister as I’d suggested, and perhaps I just didn’t explain myself clearly enough? Or maybe I did, but you had to read an entire blathering post to really get what I was asking, and many people just voted based upon the poll in the corner of the site without reading the post?
Hopefully some of you that voted will step up and justify your reasoning. Keep in mind, I’m not asking you to defend yourselves: you have every right to choose whatever answer you did. I’m just curious as to why you chose the options you did and whether there’s any modifications to the concept that would help the idea seem more appealing? Perhaps (as Cole suggested), if you were just assigned a portion of a force, but you were still given a contigent of points to buy whatever you’d like to supplement them?
As always, I welcome your feedback. And please remember to vote on the current poll to the right: let’s find out who knows how much GW paint really costs…
Image Credit: “I Love Lucy” image copyright by CBS Broadcasting Inc.