In which Ephraim admits to being a bunny.
Previously unpublished. Luckily.
Previously unpublished. Luckily.
It's an exhausted Ephraim that pens this particular missive. The Club has today held its fourteenth annual Games Day which, for the second year running, has featured a Wings Of War (WoW) tournament and, while normally not the Tournament Tiger type and again for the second year running, one has found oneself in the final. Last year the competition ended in a draw as in the six rounds allocated, neither B von H nor self could stretch to a lead. This year, in an attempt to finally establish a Club WoW Ace, the committee extended the number of rounds to eight and after a great deal of toing and froing, yet again the von H Fokker and the Gadsby Se5 fought each other to a stand-still and the result another draw. Already there is talk of extending the number of rounds to ten although one has the niggling doubt that the hoped for decisive result will not be forthcoming. If only there was another way to organise things.
But then again, on occasion one rather likes the concepts of draws. Life these days is pretty much about winning and loosing and often so it is when our hobby gets together. As has already said, one is not a Tournament Tiger (TT) but rather a Tournament Bunny (TB) – terms coined by Messers Jones & Morris (responsible for much sterling work including the WAB Arthur supplement,) to roughly categorise an individual's approach to playing in a tournament type situ. The TB places much more value on the way the game is played than the end result. Now that doesn't mean not playing to win – one owes it to one's opponent to provide a good game after all and anyone who denies that winning a good game is actually enjoyable is at best in denial and at worst a rotter intent on lulling one into a sense of false security before running off with the club silver. But whatever may, playing with a straight bat is key.
TT on the other hand are often characterised by their uncanny ability to bend the rules to suit themselves. Their concern is not for a good game enjoyed by all but a good victory enjoyed by them. Mr Schwarzenegger summed it up best in his opus “Conan The Barbarian,” when responding to the question “What is best in life?” he replied with the TT mantra; “To crush your opponents, see them flee before you and hear the lamentation of their women.” Nice.
So why bother attending tournaments if one stands a good chance of running into TTs and having one's weekend spoilt? Well one has discovered that there is indeed another way to organise things. The aforementioned Messers Jones & Morris started it all a few years ago when they ran several one-day events where the emphasis was very squarely put on how one played not how one scored. Since then, several similar one day events have sprung up around the country plus of course the sterling WAB Campaign Weekend events at Warhammer World with their genial host Rob Broom from Warhammer Historical. The emphasis at these events is always on the social, playing the game side of things and fierce competition is frowned upon. In particular one can recommend the fun campaigns run by the chaps at Gripping Beast – surely the hobby's own Odd Couple; one of them looks like he eats bottles and turns into a werewolf at will, albeit a ginger one, while the other looks, rather admirably if you were to ask me, like he's stuck in the 1930's. Whatever their image issues, their campaigns are involving, competitive and yet always fun with prizes for almost everything except winning. They now run several themed/period events a year at their own GBHQ, many of which have been reported in Wargames Illustrated, where they happily continue to champion their own blend of challenging scenarios played in a fun atmosphere. Most definitely holders of the Gadsby Seal Of Approval.
In the evening after the Club's Games Day is held the Annual Smoking Concert And Wingding and it is in preparation for this that one resting in the comfort of the Smoking Room and loosening the old tonsils with a brandy and soda. For some bizarre reason Club Chairman has bullied one into yet another rendition of “47 Ginger Headed Sailors.” One should have thought that enough had been had by all after last year's performance but, I suppose much like the Club WoW event, some things are destined to go on. And on.