Friday, October 7, 2011

Only the Tiny Plastic Dead...

Have seen the end of tiny plastic war.

A powerful quote from tiny plastic George Santayana.

At the end of the last school year I finally did it, something I've been tempted to do ever since high school.

I finally started playing wargames; specifically, Warhammer 40k and Warmachine.

I know, I know. I'm a story nerd - a filthy narrativist - who writes novels and plays sensitive, character-focused roleplaying games. What am I doing leading tiny plastic soldiers to their tiny plastic deaths on a not-so-tiny plastic battlefield?

The appeal is threefold.

Firstly, I need more hobbies that help me make friends. I've been quite isolated and lonely ever since I first moved to the San Francisco Bay Area. Don't get all stressed at me, non-wargaming-friends-what-read-this, I know you exist. I just don't have very many of you. I agree that the old saw that writing is a "solitary art" is simply wrong, especially in the era of crit groups, web forums, the Internet, and NaNoWriM. Believe it nor not, some really high quality nerds play wargames, smart guys who like to think tactically and blend compassionate sportsmanship with a competitive edge. Nerds who like to shoot the shit, drink a beer, slaughter their foes, and talk about the newest Star Trek movie.

In other words - more casual friends, exactly what I need.

Secondly, there's a really fantastic secret world of art and creativity associated with these games. Seriously - you have no idea how awesome some of these things are until you've seen them. You'd never guess that some of the most hardened, beardiest nerds are creating tiny plastic masterpieces on their tiny plastic canvases. I'm nowhere near an expert in the art of modifying and painting soldiers, but I'm enjoying the process.

Finally, a lot of wargame worlds are very well-developed, with fascinating visual and thematic bits that I now have the opportunity to steal and transform. I've already had some good ideas that were inspired by the fiction and "fluff" of the games I've started to play.

Anyway, I'm having a good time. If you play 40k or Warmahordes and are in (or visit) the San Francisco Bay Area, drop me a line. I'd love to hear from you and meet up to play a game or three.

2 comments:

Elijah said...

Hey,
Just commenting as a fellow story-nerd who came across your profile via echo bazaar. Your username sounded familiar, and it took me a second to realize it was because you are the person whose comments I always hear summarized on escape pod. Now reading your blog I'm inspired to try for NaNoWriMo this year. As a fellow story gamer, aspiring writer, and lonely soul, I salute you. Let's be facebook friends, if you've got it. username: elijahbit. Regardless, keep on doing what you're doing. We may not always comment, but we're reading you and appreciate your passion.
Warmly,
Elijah

Mark said...

Dude! Welcome to the Burning Zeppelin Experience!

It's really awesome to see you. I will totally find you on Facebook. It's good to know that my various and sundry efforts to promote myself are working!