I often meet people who are playing in their first tournament or even sometimes those who have come along to watch because "they don't feel like their ready for a tournament just yet". This article is aimed at those people in a bid to expand the UK tournament scene so that I don't just see the same old faces (you know who you are!). So what can you expect at a tournament then?
Well frankly it depends on what you expect from it. Personally I attend tournaments to play somebody different and make me really think about how to best use my army. For others it's the painting competition and some just like the banter. There's also that small group who attend with the intention of winning. Let's get something straight, they're most certainly the minority. I'm not talking about people like myself who'd love to win but just aren't that good/harsh/lucky. I'm talking about those who aren't interesting in anything but winning. These are often referred to as WAACers on internet forums meaning Win At All Costs. For the tournament newcomer these are the guys who are most likely to put you off the scene.
This is a massive shame because, as I've said, they're most certainly the minority. In the tournament games I've had I've only come across these guys on a couple of occasions. Therefore don't let this be the reason you don't go to a tournament. Similarly, if you don't think you're competitive enough don't let that stop you either. With the exception of the first game you're most likely going to be paired up with someone of a similar skill level (or someone that was lucky/unlucky). This means that if you're only coming along for a bit of a laugh and bringing a list that reflects that then you'll likely find yourself playing like minded people towards the end of the day.
As in most things in life there'll always be someone better than you and equally plenty of people a lot worse than you. Over the course of a few tournaments you'll probably play a mix of these people. This will only help to improve your game. When you play the top players you'll doubtless pick up a few things from them and when you play the other guys you'll see them doing something wrong that you know full well you've done in the past.
Anyway, I'm rambling now and I'm meant to be getting to the airport so let me leave you with a few points in summary:
- Don't be put off by the WAACers. They aren't what the tournament scene is about
- Don't worry about how competitive your army is, there's a lot of luck in who you get drawn against
- Winning isn't everything. I've been to tournaments and lost nearly every game but still enjoyed it
- No one will judge you for not knowing the rules - half of the time they're probably just assuming something that turns out to be wrong
PS. I'm now away for a couple of weeks but hotel WiFi permitting I'll answer any emails I get. Not had chance to schedule any posts though so it'll be a bit quiet on here until I'm back. See you on the other side!