Rich and I travelled up to the Mecca of the hobby (Warhammer World for those who are new) for the Horus Heresy Throne of Skulls at the end of last month. I have been before for a 40K Thrones (It's run for all of GW's Gaming Systems a few times a year) and it's fair to say it was an awesome event run by great staff members and attended by a stellar bunch of guys.
A bit of background for the event for those who haven't been to a Thrones before. Throne of Skulls isn't like a conventional tournament in the sense that the winner of the event is not the person who has written an insane list and has tabled everyone in two turns but whoever receives the most Favourite Game votes over the course of the weekend. If you were to turn up to a Throne of Skulls with a brutal, WAAC, smash them all list then you would not come close to winning. It's really refreshing to have this for an event as it does result in a much more relaxed, informal, and 'Beerhammer' environment. Whilst I love the challenge of a competitive event, tournament, or league, it is great fun to just go and have a laugh. Of course this didn't mean there weren't challenging lists or games to be had, all of my games were close, tight, and very challenging – but it just meant no one was getting tabled by turn two.
This is something really important to mention as I've noticed a growing number of posts in the various Facebook Groups for our hobby about “competitive vs fun” gaming. I personally think it's fun to do either (or a combination) in any of the gaming systems out there. I think that the guys at Warhammer World do the blend of competitive and fun perfectly with these kinds of event. I have never had a bad experience there – and this is an event where the Invisibility Psychic Power isn't even comped! So even if you've had a bad experience at a tournament or gaming event of some sort then this is one I can guarantee you'll enjoy. Oh and also our Tournament, Seeds of Destruction, of course.... (24th and 25th September, Firestorm Games, 1850 Points, £35, includes lunch, tickets available here!) Anyway, back to what I'm supposed to tell you about!
The games that I had were all great fun. I came away with two major victories, a narrow victory, and two narrow defeats which was pretty good considering I took Space Wolves – a Legion that still has no special rules, characters, or units. Most importantly I killed two Primachs! Guilliman, who took two or three turns of point blanc Typhon Siege Tank fire before he went down, and Mortarion – he literally took two turns of three thousands points of Space Wolves before he snuffed it. For those who haven't played two Horus Heresy lists against one another the attrition rate in 30K compared to 40K is simply staggering, I think about 50% of both armies were dead by the end of turn two in every game I played.
More important than the results was the enjoyment of the overall experience as I alluded to earlier. There were some truly beautiful armies on display, as can be seen from the many photos up on our Facebook page that we took, as well as some fun and fluffy lists that were interesting and unusual to play against. I didn't have a single disagreement or dispute over the weekend with anyone, and the guys there were all great to talk to and have a beer with.
Speaking of beer, the pub inQUIZisition (Warhammer World's idea not mine, though I greatly approve of the pun) was fantastic fun and surprisingly difficult. They didn't run a quiz at the last Throne of Skulls I went to and it was a great idea – definitely something that should be done again. Apparently Alpharius isn't an appropriate answer for every question though....
Of course a trip to Warhammer World is also always worth it to see the exhibition, which is really an experience, have some homebrew (or Trollbrew I guess) in Bugman's, and of course get your resin and/or plastic fix. Or in my case souvenir mug fix.
Rich got nominated for a Best Army Award with his absolutely gorgeous Shattered Legions – Blood Angels and Imperial Fists. There was stiff competition and the prize went to a very impressive Mechanicum force, but we are massively chuffed as a club to have another member with a painting award or nomination. (Just afterwards Ryan won a couple of pins and a Bronze Golden Daemon as well – not a bad couple of weeks for the Vale Renegades painters eh?)
Whilst I didn't win any awards I went to Warhammer World and only spent £26.00 – so I think I should get a medal for that....