My local club has been host to an evangelist for wargaming produced by a company other than Games Workshop, and he ran across a strange situation.  Otherwise rational people were paying money, spending hours painting and modelling miniatures and then showing up at a club week in, week out, to play a game.  A game they didn't like.  A game they weren't enjoying.  

A game they hated.

I'm going to let that sink in while I find an appropriate image.

Ah, there we go.  Now I can understand to some degree that these players didn't realise that there were wargames out there not made by Games Workshop, but why would you invest so much money and energy into something you don't enjoy?  (Tongue-in-cheek explanation here).

So that got me thinking, do I enjoy 40k?  I mean, do I really enjoy it, or am I just playing it because it's what I've played for so long?  This line of thinking revealed two things to me.  One, that yes, while I complain far too much about the game (and will really have to stamp on that), I really do enjoy it.  From the modelling, to the painting, to the actual game itself, I find it fun.  Two, that a lot of players suffer from groupthink.  Massive groupthink.

Let me give you an example:  I've said "Oh, I don't play Fantasy, I'm not fond of it and it has huge issues with over-powered magic in 8th Edition".  Let's break that one down, shall we?  "I don't play Fantasy".  Ok, fine, then why are you expressing an opinion on it's flaws?  Do you know that, or are you just repeating what some grizzled Fantasy self-hater told you?  Turns out I wasn't immune to this groupthink.  It doesn't even have to be a traditional group, you can suffer from Warseerthink, 3++think, anything that involves mass opinion being the overwhelming hammer of reality rather than your own experience.

What does all this have to do with the Trygon?  Well, that's my other revelation.  I've been complaining that while I've got a Trygon in my Tyranid army, I'd much rather have a Carnifex.  I had said that this was a reaction to the "flavour of the month" nature of the Trygon.  It wasn't.  It was a reaction to me wanting to play 4th Edition Tyranids.  Once I got past that block, I actually quite like my "SpikeyWormThing", and am very much looking forward to painting it (it's my reward for my next batch of Hormagaunts).  Play the game for what it is, not what you want it to be, and it's much more fun for all involved.

At the end of the day I love my hobby.  I should be evangelising that the way the "Other ways than Games Workshop" visitor was.  I have no real problems with 5th Edition of 40k and actually I think most problems with balance can be overcome through clever thinking and list building.  I should stop muttering and get on with the whole point: to enjoy myself and facilitate the enjoyment of other players.

You don't help anyone enjoy their hobby by complaining about it.
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