Why I Won't Be Playing Warmachine

December 14, 2011 ·

December 14, 2011

Warmachine has been around for 10 years now, which is scary considering I played it when it first came out.

I even demonstrated it at Kensington Olympia the following year and was badly paid in free figures.

Then 'Escalation', the first Warmachine expansion, was released and this great little game changed forever before quickly being dubbed 'Infantry-Machine' by the online community.

Since then I've dipped my toe back into Warmachine a couple of times. Most recently I picked up the new Khador book, Khador starter box and the new sculpt of The Butcher Of Khardov -my favourite Warcaster.

Lack of Opponents

Worst of all, I can only really play against James, who openly admitted that while he wanted to do Cygnar, he chose Cryx because he wants to win. Yeah...fun...

Don't get me wrong, James is like a brother to me, which could explain why he's such a close friend, while at other times I want to rip his arms off and beat him to death with them.

But he is competitive by nature. Very competitive. And anything that starts out as fun will quickly turn into a serious competition. I can't let him 'just win' of course. So perhaps I'm just as bad?

Anyway, the other side of this competitive coin is that his model building and painting standards are considerably lower than mine. He'll blitz through a whole unit in a day, base coating it black, painting the bare minimum colours, flock it with grey flock and consider it finished -Hence why he chose Cryx. But I just can't bring myself to do that.

So he always wins any kind of 'escalation' based army building. And if we're only playing each other, his army will somehow 'evolve' to specifically obliterate mine.

The reason we'll only be playing each other is because our nearest decent gaming club is too far away to get to and runs at inconvenient times. So the only other source of opponents is to attend some Warmachine tournaments, which are few and far between.

Lack of Range
Did I mention how badly I suck at this game?

This is because I can't guess ranges to save my life, which is a problem when the longest ranged gun in the game is about 12" and the slightest difference in 1" or 2" can make or break a game.

The juggling of unit activations, spells, lasting effects and focus didn't make this too enjoyable for me either. To an extent, I like to relax when playing games and trying to juggle all this was a bit too taxing after a long day at the office.

You see, this is why I quickly discarded the traditionally 'magical' Warcasters in favour of The Butcher. The man is simplicity itself! He has simple spells, thinks simple and fights simple. He may be as subtle as a sledgehammer, but playing him worked well for a while.

Lack of Time
This is the main factor, because I only have so much time to dedicate to building and painting models. Typically Warhammer 40K always comes first.

Warhammer 40K is also our main game, so it always takes priority.
Similarly, if I buy stuff to build and paint, it's usually 40K.
If we want to have a wargaming weekend away, it's always 40K.

And that's the great thing about playing Warhammer 40K, because it's convenient and everybody plays it. So it's easy to buy tournament tickets or simply rock up at Warhammer World for a day of games and we always bump into people we know there.

Warmachine on the other hand, I feel needs more of an investment in time to really plan an army. It also seems like a great effort to organise a game that we're not very familiar with and it always takes ages to set up and play.

Not that I'm wanting to put anyone off Warmachine (or Hordes), but for me it will never expand beyond the start box games simply due to the limited time I have to invest in my hobby.

It's just more productive to invest that time in the games which are easily accessible to so many, creating a much wider pool of opponents. And that's Warhammer 40,000 and Warhammer Fantasy.

As for board games like Space Hulk, Zombies!!! and Super Dungeon Explore, they're equally convenient, because they don't need painting straight away, there aren't as many models and there are no army lists to build. They're also a much smaller investment in both time and money.

I guess these are all the reasons that I like board games so much...but that's for another blog post.

So have you tried Warmachine or Hordes yet and how did you find it?


anucer said...
December 14, 2011 at 7:05 PM  

lol for some reasons i feel like you did this because i mentioned Warmachine in your last post...

As much as i loved Warhammer 40k and my army, i can now just look down at it and feel bad. I would LOVE to keep playing it, but IMO GW is screwing the game little by little, by making it even more cheesy, imbalanced and even MORE expensive.

40K is also a very competitive game rather than a fun one. I am kidna fed up, seeing all of my tactic blown away by someone who is barelly thinking about what he is doing and just move and fire with his cheesy models.

If you have anything that could bring me back into the game that would be cool but right now... even my friend make me "sick" of the game.

I wish you luck sha's la!

Spartan31337 said...
December 15, 2011 at 1:55 PM  

i'm actually just getting into warmachine, and am finding it rather fascinating.

in 40k, there are named characters, but rarely are they taken because there's usually a more cost-effective alternative (calgar vs regular captain, njal vs rune priest, etc), and with WM/H you have these heroes that cost nothing to put into the army (they rather add a number of points to it) so you can pick which one you like the best and go with it without worrying if it will break your points bank, or you can't use it at lower points levels, etc.

i also like the fact that if you, by the end of the game, have far less units than the other guy left, you can still win. in 40k, if person A has 5 models, and person B has 50, person B is most likely (all else being equal) going to win - with WM/H, person A still has a chance.

I agree that 40k has far more players however, and finding games for WM/H does seem to be something of an issue where i am at as well.

I think that if more games could be found that you would enjoy it more.

suneokun said...
December 16, 2011 at 1:51 AM  

For me Hormachine ain't where its at. It's more 'honest' than GW, in that although everyone gets cheesy rules and combo's, its all about exploits these in powerplays to tactically exclude or eliminate. Its a dance of tactics and powerplays, I get it.

Not interested.

40k does the above badly (mainly in that their 'codex release strategy' hugely benefits the newer codici over the older ones, balance is for wimps (and gameplay as well, apparently)...

I got into skirmish games, most notably Infinity. It's a great game, but its complicated and thought provoking and requires a lot of thought as every move you make has a reaction from the opponent ... enjoyable but hard work (and thus rewarding).

Hence my Flames of War leap. I want the 40k (Wheel and fire) gameplay, I want the scale of warfare, but I want rid of the tic-tac-toe sci-fi buffs and bad codici.

Flames of War gives me the tactics and the 'realism' of warfare (Troops can ride tanks, tank can assault, etc) but removes them 'He can do Whhhhaaaaattt?' Aspect of 40k (which is so gay).

Enough rant.

Marshal Wilhelm said...
December 16, 2011 at 2:47 AM  

If you don't have a community, it is hard to get into something, for sure.
I am a little surprised that London doesn't have a good sized community, but there you go.

Now onto James - I would have thought anyone playing with DA before the FAQ would have needed to be a fluff player, for sure! Lol
Interesting to know he really gets into competing.

I have to start painting my Retribution and will let you know how it all goes. But Space marine is distracting me, and trying to get multi-kills with the Vengeance Launcher is something I am not doing very well :P

Anonymous said...
December 18, 2011 at 6:56 PM  

I've been playing WM/H for 5 years now, and for me Warmachine/Hordes is very faced paced and dynamic. The units and solos interact in so many possible ways, that you can literally create combinations on the spot. Its very close range and brutal. The slightest mistake by either player can mean the end of the game. And by slightest, I mean .5" This amounts to a steep learning curve. When players school you in a game, they are literally schooling you, as every loss is such a brutal beating, that its engraved into your brain. You never lose the same way twice.

I tend to enjoy this kind of game more than the structured and methodical games like 40k. I like challenges and games that force me to push beyond my current level, as all the challenges help fore me to get better.

Brosef Stalin said...
November 2, 2013 at 2:19 PM  

I tried playing Warmachine, but the learning curve was too steep leading me to walk away with a 0-5 record. everyone just wiped me off the board with colossals. Back to 40k.

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