Sunday, 27 January 2013
Battle Brothers I - How I See It.
Battle Brothers I is over and I can safely say it was a tournament of two halves. Out of 119 Battle Brothers, Team Claws and Fists finished a rather surprising 29th, troubling the top 25% for probably the first time in the history of this blog. Was it a moment of tactical genius or were Gav and I taken over by extra terrestrial beings of immense power, superior table-top war-gaming ability and fabulous dress sense? You can decide for yourselves as I recount our experiences at Warhammer World this weekend with a report from each game every day this week (you lucky reader, you!).
To keep you tided over until the first one drops on Monday afternoon I thought I'd say a little something about the tournament in general.
Firstly, show me the money! These weekends are not cheep, at a little under £100 they are about twice the price of the independent tournaments (per head), so what do you get for your money? Well, the food's really good ... they give you a pen in the player pack, which is presented in a card folder ... and you get a plastic name badge ... erm ... they provide trays for your army. Oh and they run a 5 game tournament over the weekend. Joking aside I don't think it's terrible value for money but I am a little disappointed that there's not some prize support or just better trophies for all of the winners; let's be honest, the certificates they give to the winners (glass trophies for 1st place aside) are more than a little bit rubbish.
Secondly, random pairings. There was no "Swiss" system for the pairings, it was randomly done for every round. If I really think about this I've got to say it doesn't bother me greatly, it goes with GW's philosophy for discouraging serious competition which is fine, it is their game after all! However I do like the way that the Swiss system will typically put players of a similar ability together after a couple of games. That said, I think each methodology has it's place in the tournament scene, and if I go to a ranking tournament I would expect it to be a Swiss pairing system but for something where even if I win every game I'm still not guaranteed to win (more on that at the end of the week) then random pairings is perfectly fine. Thinking about it more, we play a dice game, we should all be comfortable with a reliance on the random.
I could go on but I'll just finish off by saying that this is not a tournament for players expecting to be rewarded for smashing each of their opponents out of the park. If you want to be judged purely on your ability to play the game, stick to the independent circuit. However, if you can get past the fact that your results may not transform themselves into a podium placing (or whatever your aspirations are) then you'll certainly enjoy tournaments like this. Not just because it attracts a very different spectrum of gamers from the indie circuit but because there's a slightly more relaxed mood in the room, or at least that's how I saw it.
Did anyone here also attend Battle Brothers this weekend, or have you been to a GW Doubles Tournament in the past? Let us know what you thought about the event in the comments below.