Guest Editorial by Edwin: The Handicap

Now that’s a handicap

I want to talk about something that personally affects me as a gamer.  It is a concept that I have taken to heart in many games I have played over my lifetime as a gamer. It makes everything more fun. This simple concept is why I , even after all the calculations and number crunching I do, I never view myself as a power gamer. This concept is something I have always chosen to uphold and has even caused me to be driven off on a rare occasion keeping certain people when it comes to gaming. I personally find myself wanting to pick one of the weakest armies or characters in any game I play. Sure, I can optimize the faction in any way I please and it wouldn’t equal to a decent force from a strong faction. Why would you do this? Well, that is what this entire article is gonna be about.

The Fun!

Doing this is sometimes a great deal of fun. Monkey stomping the hell out of people is rarely fun for both parties. This way can result in a lot of fun. Every time I play a really strong faction, I find myself unintentionally doing something incredibly mean. A decent roll of the dice sees something happen that I didn’t really expect to happen and results is something that isn’t very fun. They just hurt no matter how much you want them to not hurt. Games seem more serious when you have them.  Let me give you but a few examples.

Duengons and Dragons and Bards. Oh my!

Ok, so Duengons and Dragons edition 3.5 had a ton of balance issues at some places. There was a build for a character called CoDzilla. What this was was a Cleric or Druid would specialize in one state usually. They would out perform any class at this one task and still have enough tools to do anything else that was really needed. I made a Cleric would could heal and tank for the part at the same time. I had double the armor class of anyone else in the party. I had a Dungeon Master provide a surefire way to hit anyone he wanted to with his boss character. I walked up to him and he still missed me. The thing was, this character was so boring. If it didn’t murder the rest of the party, it had no chance of even hitting me. It was terrible. Than, I played what is considered to be the worst class in the entire game. The Bard. He sings, he dances, he is just bad. That is, he is just bad if you don’t play him well.  If you play him well, he can do things that no other person in the party can do and be an absolute blast while doing so. He could talk his way out of fights and was a gem to have. Often played badly, they got a bad rap. Was fun, yet played well and powerfully. For me, I played the 3rd edition Necron codex in order to have more fun. Sure, I could bring Melta, transports, and all sorts of things, but I found it fun to have an infantry force that wasn’t Nidzilla. They had their unique elements and were considered garbage by many people during Fifth edition. I loved this. I loved running around with the oldest codex because I loved the fun that was using something considered bad.

Pardon my meme

I love a good challenge. So much so, that I want a challenge in every game. A lot of the time, I don’t get a challenge if I play the strong faction. There is no daring gambit, just a plan that goes the way it should have. Some of my most difficult games I ever played were a result of using an aging codex, primarily Necrons, and taking them against things like Ard boys tournament worth orks (Battle wagon blitz), space wolves (Thunderwolf longfang spam with min troops) , and more. I loved that up hill struggle in a game. As bad as it sounds, it is my number one complaint about the new Necron Codex. The challenege is gone really. I remember it taking me three years to kill a bloody land raider. I did it on accident last game. It is what I meant to do, but I didn’t think it would actually work. Changed the feeling of the whole game. It kinda ruined the game for the both of us. With the challenge being gone, the fun was also gone. Things are better the harder you have to work for them.

so whats the point?

The point is simple. Try making a weak force. Test the skills you have as a gamer by not using the best and see how things go. Give it the old college try. *pauses for the flood of gay jokes to pass*. Try things that seem fun.  I tried playing with a weaker force when i was younger and it was an absolute blast and I have never looked back.


About Reecius

The fearless leader of the intrepid group of gamers gone retailers at Frontline Gaming!

2 Responses to “Guest Editorial by Edwin: The Handicap”

  1. Vidar December 20, 2012 10:20 am #

    I really like this article. I am not a ranked player. I got a middle of the road score at adepticon this year. But I love taking wazoo units. I love taking the worst units and trying to figure out how they can work. I enjoy list building with strange constraints. How about CSM with a 170 pt per unit cap? You start looking appreciatively at mutilators and warp talons. We all know that spam works but bringing as veried a list as possible presents you more tools and develops your skills as a player.

    • edwin December 21, 2012 2:47 am #

      Glad you liked it. I like smaller point units myself. Biggest turn off aboutbchaos marines was unit price

Leave a Reply