WFB: I Came to Play (Even the Jerks)

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I have been playing Warhammer Fantasy for 10 years and here’s why I’m not going anywhere!

It has been a decade since I started playing Warhammer Fantasy, played some 40k as well but my focus has always been fantasy. There’s just something about the idea of swinging a sword at someone or shooting an arrow through someone that seems more interesting than shooting a gun: probably why I got a brand new recurve bow not a rifle for Christmas, but I can discuss more about that one my personal blog. Mostly I do it because I enjoy playing the game.

I was weaned on Risk and Chess and other games (you can read more about my interest in board games on my personal blog too) and though I frequently lost at Risk, I usually did pretty well with Chess. When I learned Fantasy it became quickly apparent that I could relate the game to both Risk and Chess and often still find that when people ask what Warhammer is the easiest way to explain is in terms of Risk and Chess. I usually say something along the lines of “it’s like Risk and Chess. Like chess each model or unit type has specific things it can and cannot do and movements it can make but everything is determined by dice rolled by attackers and defenders much like Risk.” I find most people have a general understanding from that. 

Once I started to play I found I loved to play, that unlike Risk or Chess I had ways that I could adjust what I started with. really who doesn’t love playing games?!? Being weaned in a game rich environment I didn’t think much about the fact that Warhammer appears to be a man’s game and just started to play. I was welcomed into our local gaming community and quickly became enthralled with the various models, supplements, mini games, and the variety that can be had simply by changing what you brought to the table. I win games, I lose games (mostly lose games) and I always make sure I have fun because to me it is a game and that is what games are for: having fun.

A few days ago I experienced the worst gaming experience of my life and am still a little stunned. When I went out to play games I met a guy new to the community who upon discovering I intended to play and wasn’t just there to watch someone else play or socialize with other wives and girlfriends who weren’t playing said to me that women have no place in Warhammer and I should go back to the kitchen where I belong. I thought he was joking at first and started to laugh but I realized quickly that he was serious. Rather than showing my anger at his attitude I challenged him to a game and he left rather than accepting my challenge. His attitude was shocking because I have never been treated like that by another gamer but mostly it infuriated me because I was just there to play the game, the same as the other gamers there that night.

It tainted my gaming for the night and for the first time ever I did not enjoy my games and was among the first to leave. After I left I was trying to remind myself that the actions and careless words of others should not dictate my enjoyment of the game (though we all know sometimes they do) and discovered that I appreciated my treatment by the general Warhammer community a little more as a result of this one person’s ego. I discussed it with  my friends within CHOP! and while most offered to have words with the fellow and reminded me that his opinion was not generally shared I quote the infamous Chris Powell when I quote the response that I liked the best: “Jen, when I play you I don’t see a woman, I see an obstacle to victory that needs to be removed.” 

CHOP! Warhammer Biker Gang
Members Peter Davis, Chris & Jamie 
I won’t let one person’s negative opinion taint me from playing because I enjoy playing Warhammer and I personally don’t play for the approval of others, I play for the enjoyment of the game, for the challenge of the tactics and to socialize with friends (long time and new). Others play to win, others play for a place to be away from their daily lives and struggles, others play because they feel badly about spending money to buy all those models and not do something with them. 
Why do you play?
A recent game between Chris and I…yes he crushed me.
Starting soon I’ll be writting about how to get started with Warhammer Fantasy so keep watching for my next article, meanwhile feel free to follow my blog

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