Next Steps in a New Game
This week I got to chat with Paul of T&G Productions about the next steps after picking up a new game and The Walking Dead: All Out War as well as the upcoming ‘Conflict’ event they’re running in August.
Corey: Once you get into a new game, what would you say is the ‘next step’ of the hobby?
Paul: For me the attraction is initially the miniatures, next is the fluff and the story. I’m not a super competitive player, I like the narrative of games. I like cool looking boards and scenery and being able to look down and say “that looks awesome”. On T&G we want our boards to look as amazing as we possibly can, gone are the days where gamers were using shoes for terrain.
C: You mentioned the narrative aspect of it, The Walking Dead is a very narrative game. Do you think that made it more fulfilling to get deeper and more invested in because there’s a story to it?
P: I think you’ve hit the nail on the head there, I’ve always been a fan of TWD comics and the TV show. When the Kickstarter came around I wasn’t able to back it, which was a shame. But I was able to pick up the Kickstarter stuff quite quickly and playing TWD you do get quite invested in the characters, like Neegan in the comics is so complex and ruthless that you’re quite drawn to that style of play when you’re using him on the table. Rick, on the other hand, you’re inclined to play a bit more tactically, and I think that does drive the games that you play.
We did one game for the channel where I teamed Neegan up with Michonne, and we had comments saying “this would never happen in the comics”, and well, you’re right, but it can happen in the tabletop.
C: I think that's a really cool thing in tabletop games with that narrative aspect, that you can change it to suit your story. I remember the Lord of the Rings game one year they gave you rules for creating your own Fellowship.
P: I think that’s a huge factor to the attraction of tabletop wargames. Not just the tactics, but the storytelling ability. We’re running the ‘Conflict’ event at The Game Forge in August, and that’s going to have a narrative element to it. TWD doesn’t really lend itself to a purely competitive environment, it’s too narrative. Not that it’s not got the potential for that in the future, but a narrative focus currently suits the smaller crews and the story element. At Conflict we’re playing five unique scenarios that I wrote, that together will tell a story throughout the day.
C: What’s really cool about TWD is that you can marry up the more competitive elements with the narrative.
P: Most definitely, I don’t like to think of Conflict as a tournament, but at the end of the day there are going to be people who win prizes, as well as a load of participation prizes, the swag bag that people are going to get is amazing. But the goal of ‘Conflict’ is to crown someone the champion. But it’s not going to be as simple as tabling your opponent, the points are tied in with key scenario objective. Some of the scenarios you’re going to have to work with your opponent and then snatch the win at the right time, but I’d like to keep it a surprise for the day.
C:So, narrative, scenery and then tournaments, is there anything else that you’d say is the next level of a game?
P: Getting involved in the community is certainly an aspect of it. There’s got to be enough to keep you entertained; in this day and age we’re limited by the time that we have to invest in a game. Like I said with TWD, I’ve been a big fan of that for a long time, and also the TV show, but I think it’s got to have a good environment for it and people talking about it. TWD definitely has that.
We’re getting to the point now where people are champing at the bit for the next release and you know what’s coming because of the comic. The limited fluff I’ve seen for Godtear makes me hope that it’s got a similar feel to TWD, sort of hobby focused and gameplay focused, whereas Guild Ball is focussed more around the tournament scene.
C: I think you’ve hit on something really interesting there, different games filling different roles: TWD is narrative/community based where it’s all about getting invested in the story, whereas Guild Ball is more about the competitive element. Next week we’ll be talking about different games and their roles ahead of the launch of the new edition of Age of Sigmar!
Tickets for Conflict are available now, all information can be found here