Custom Rules

Taking Ownership of Our Rules

Posted Mar 24, 2017 by: JonathanTaking Ownership of Our Rules

Tabletop war-games are about having fun, challenging ourselves, putting a spark in our imagination & being a part of a community. Despite this reality, sometimes we find ourselves in repeated situations where we can't play a game the way we want to play it, and the way we should play it. I'm very excited today to talk to you about taking the ownership of our games back!

Ownership is the concept of not just controlling something, but making it your own: taking pride in it & taking creative responsibility for it even when you didn't begin the process or setup the original context. Our hobbies, and more specifically for this topic our hobby battles, are our own. Too often however, we abstract our playing and consequently lose much of the fun factor that comes with making a hobby your own - and opening up all the creative possibilities that lie therein.

Why do we let this happen? Actually, for very good reasons! Between family, work & time needed to travel to hobby centers - most of us lead busy lives! We don't often have a ton of time to haggle over rules, prepare themed battles, arrange playgroups and so forth. It is for this reason that we have wonderful rule-books & codexes written by so many diligent companies. These help us standardize processes so we have an agreed format. However, this should not be the end of the creative process, but only the beginning!

Part of our hope with the Game Fortress is that we will enable you to more easily take ownership of your hobby experience. Let me give you two examples:

  1. Organizing thematic battles & campaigns in Warhammer 40k. There are so many amazing & fun missions put out by Games Workshop for different scenarios & situations. The trouble is that the more that are released, the less likely an opponent you just met up with will be familiar with them. They may be understandably timid about investing an hour or more into a match that might turn out to be unfair to them. People like to have a fighting chance even if they don't win, and if they can't - to at least know what they're going up against in a match prior. The Game Fortress would allow you to centralize your communication, notes, rosters & so forth for an upcoming match right down to the scheduled kick off. In this way you can pre-arrange that thematic mission for hunting down Cypher, or surviving the Tyranid horde with a willing opponent. Or arrange a complex Apocalypse showdown.
  2. Changing & converting rules to how we want them. We want to play with our best converted & best painted models. Wouldn't it be nice to have fair, but fun & competitive rules to go along with them? This is something communities can achieve as a group! For example, I've converted a Baneblade into a Space Marine heavy tank - complete with gigantic plasma sponsons. Building off the Baneblade base points, I can create rules that are fair but fun, get feedback, win the approval of my community online, and then, with the pre-approval of my opponent, include those rules in my community games. Another example would be the Imperial Spacemarine anniversary model - so many amazing paint jobs sitting on shelves for this one! The rules are very thematic, but few people will agree to you paying 0 points to instant death their Riptide/Captain/Hive Tyrant. With the Game Fortress as a community, we can take ownership of this awesome model, give it an appropriate points cost, allow rules for SW/BA/DA and then allow members to opt-in or out to this customization for their games. We also hope to make tie ins to bigger items, such as the ITC format.

I hope those thoughts are helpful! I'm very excited to help overcome these challenges with the Game Fortress in a way that can be beneficial to gamers, store owners, tournaments as well as parent companies such as Games Workshop.

Photo & Imperial Space Marine model by Lil Legend Commission Painting Studio

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