Our Shared Point Value Responsibility
Every year, the largest Warhammer 40k tournament event system has the same poll, wit the same result. The ITC every year asks the public one very important question, how many points do you want to play? The answer every time is the highest possible of the choices given. As it stands, most tournaments play games at 1850 points and by proxy pick-up games. As long time readers know, Blood of Kittens has always believed lower points are preferable, solving many of the problems Warhammer 40k has had for ages.
In the age of Formations, bloated Psychic phase, and free units, the call to play fewer points should be strong, instead the ITC seems to incentivizes it. The argument about game speed and points has been settle, you can’t make a logical argument against the data that shows more players are taking longer to finish games than ever before. With infinite time this isn’t a problem, but that is not the world most players exist in.
Tournaments have time constraints and even game stores can’t stay open forever. Solutions exist beyond just lower points, but things like chess clocks, forcing players to run only certain types of lists, or turn penalties are all fraught with problems mostly of the social contract variety. I also undestand people want to play with all the toys, but what is the point if games only gets through 2 or 3 turns? If you want all your toys why not just show up to an event, lay them all out and take pictures and call it a day.
We as a community have to do better, if and when Games Workshop streamlines the game it is up to us to be part of the solution. Thankfully a new trend is forming, and it is starting to pick up steam. The long running Renegade Open just ran a 70 person event at 1650 is leading the charge. the Renegade Open featured the current top ranked player in the ITC and a few other high ranking players. Shocking to no one, most players finished their games naturally and it didn’t stop anyone from taking the Formations and Detachments they have grown to love.
This success is allowing other events to consider 1650 as a viable option. This is a good news, but we can’t just count on events organizers to do all the work, we need the players to demand and support it. It requires players who love higher point games to understand everyone benefits from lower point games when you have time limits. If the autistic incentives are not enough think no longer being of accused of slow playing or having to accuse someone of slow playing. Think about the fewer models you have paint and transport. Think about not being tainted by game results that would have been different if played to a natural conclusion.
As a personal note from someone who covers events, I just cannot stand see so many winners crowned because they had one or two games along the way that ended prematurely. I see the bitter faces of many victims who think they were cheated because one or both parties couldn’t play fast enough.
It is time to think about the community and understand Games Workshop is probably not going to save us from games not finishing. We should just use the easiest mechanic to make every game end naturally and that is playing at less points!
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