There has been a really interesting discussion on this recently in the NZ scene. My feel is you are never going to get consensus between the two parties in this matter as to what constitutes the “Hobby” and what people should enjoy and conform too.
However I wanted to cover this from my perspective and to encourage “POSITIVE” debate towards the goal of a better Warhammer Scene for all in NZ.
We use to term “Hobby Hero”, Fluff gamer etc. to describe those guys who through focus/choice take softer lists to “competitive events”.
We also use the term “power gamer” etc. to describe guys who they see from a perspective take hard optimised lists to tournaments for a smash face mentality saying they ignore all the other aspects of the hobby.
Both sides have different views on what should make up events/tournaments ranging from comp, sports, painting etc.
I will give you my view and ideas on how we can embrace both sides. I love the “Hobby” I have been in it since the 1990’s and it has been an enduring part of my spare time.
I partake in all aspects, I paint (when my wife lets me!), I model, convert, blog, have run events, play garage games etc. and love the social side outside of games and do that in a number of systems so I like to think I have a balanced perspective.
I also like to play hard games of warhammer at the top tables of events with hard lists v other hard lists and good players. This is one part of the “Hobby” I enjoy. I don’t make any excuses for this. I am not a dick at the table (no funny comments Ross!) have never taken a sports hit and play fair. I however do play to win and wouldn’t say go easy on a softer list/less experienced player. Would I help them with rules yes, would I give them pointers after the game, yes.
This is part of the “Hobby” I enjoy. I don’t like being made to feel bad about this as I never impose my views on people whose focus is best painted, or taking a double giant list for example.
But in a competitive/ranked event I’m not going to handicap myself by taking a softer list because people think I should or do themselves. I’m not making them take hard lists. I still go to have fun and hope my opponents have a fun game even If I am taking their toys off.
As soon as events are ranked, we have Masters etc. they add a different element and the focus of the event changes.
To promote the “Hobby” I think there is a place on the NZ Scene for an event like Warhammer Achievements in the UK that actively encourages through comp/an achievements list all aspects of the hobby. Where you get points for bringing silly lists and choices you would normally not.
These are more “Hobby Weekends” rather than competitive tournament weekends. These embrace all aspects from gaming, fluff writing, painting etc. They REWARD things other than finishing first, smashing face etc. Prizes for funny lists, best achievements and modelling, hobby.
I would embrace these events as I love the chance to take units I normally wouldn’t and take the focus away from rankings etc. back to the hobby as a whole. I have two stonehorns, and 3 yetis that have yet to see the light of day but will!
I have rambled for a fair bit so I will leave it to the community to comment, I think there is room for all aspects of the “Hobby” at events I’m just not sure we will ever please both parties in the single event as the views are too far apart.