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Wednesday, 20 April 2016

When is wargaming, not wargaming.

I was going to hold off writing this post until more wargamers who read the Wargames Illustrated had a chance to read and digest their now regular feature, Club Focus. [ A good idea by the way]
 However this months write up has been mithering away at me since I obtained my copy, so I have decided to comment prematurely.
  I was also a tad worried that any casual reader coming across my blog for the first time [ I wish ] would think I was a moaney old git, perhaps I am.
 Anyway in this months Club Focus, it concerns a visit to the WB3D gaming group, who are actually based not very far away from where I live, and I actually receive their daily Facebook entries, [ I'm not certain how that happened]
 The club is pretty new, and seems to be very active which is wonderful etc. etc.
There is a 'however' and it is the following text which I will quote;

 ' The concept of 3D gaming in the context of what we do as wargamers is not original. However there are two reasons why we chose to adopt the title for our club.
The first is controversial in our community but I believe firmly that wargaming is a title for our hobby will become obsolete and may already be having a negative effect on bringing younger people into the fold.

It then goes on ; ' The second reason [ for the name] is that not all games played at wargames clubs are wargames. For example, do games such as Zombicide, Pandemic and 7TV among many others count as wargames?'  

You can see where I am going with this dear readers can't you.
   I thought we had done away with this bollocks in the late 1970's and early 1980's when the USA introduced Adventure Gaming which was an attempt to get away from the connotation with war, obviously not.
 So just to clarify why the group calls itself WB3D, it is because they are based in Whitley Bay and they play with 3 dimensional figures, ie toy soldiers, or is that toy persons, or toy non persons, to include toys of indeterminate gender and creed.
 AND someone at the club firmly believes that the term Wargames is having a negative effect on young people.
 F.F.S. we live in an age where young people constantly view live executions, sexting, non stop porn and all the other abominations of modern life shown 24/7 on the internet, but the term Wargames is having a negative effect on young people!!!
 Also the term Wargaming is becoming obsolete, because the new non wargaming, wargamer is 'playing' other non war, wargames.
 BUT ZOMBICIDE, et al. doesnt have a negative effect on young people. because playing with 3D figures [ ie non soldiers] re enacting dead people eating live people is a positive role model to have.
 You couldnt make it up.

 I should have known when a member of the WB3D talks of 'concepts' and 'contexts' that this would be followed by a load of over emotive, navel gazing, unmitigated bollocks.
   I honestly thought I had finally escaped this when I retired, but oh no, 'they keep dragging you back in',
  I am waiting for some flat earth believing informed person to suggest that we re name this country in order to escape the fact that we had a British Empire, perhaps we could be called  Zombieland.
 Be afraid fellow obsolete persons, be very afraid.



24 comments:

  1. Top rant Robbie - do you feel better now ?

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    1. Our lass reckons I've turned into Victor Meldrew. Personally I thought he was a wuss.

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  2. Aye, that was proper quality Robbie! For a minute I thought you were going to rip a branch of a nearby tree and start beating your car ..... :D

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    1. If it wasnt so pathetic it would be funny wouldnt it, I really wonder just what goes through peoples heads. I do voluntary work, and at a meeting the other day, there was a big discussion about whether the place I work at should give away free Pineapple chunks on cocktail sticks at a food fair. Its to do with the previous Bishops of Durham, anyway it was deemed that the chunks could stick in a child's throat, so they decided to give away free Pineapple drops instead, no risk there then! Youre right, I am Victor Meldrew.

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  3. Robbie, to be honest, the title says to me their interest in military history will be slight. So I don't need to know them. When the kids start going out to work some of them will naturally drift into military history hobbies, despite the best efforts of the modern English school system. While the others........as I said, don't need to know them.
    Michael

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    1. Michael,
      I honestly dont think their spokesperson understood irony, because later in the article he talks of 'playing' games of modern warfare, now I have always thought playing with soldiers depicting current conflicts was somehow wrong.But what do I know.

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    2. Unfortunately, in the future, THEY will want to know you!

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  4. Yep, what Michael said.

    Best Regards,

    Stokes

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    1. Stokes, you work in education. The minds of most Young people are a sponge, feed them information and eventually they will learn and make informed decisions. Feed them on only sanitised version of life and they will be unprepared for it, and unable to make reasoned decisions. War is terrible, but by learning about the whys and where for must help people understand why it is bad. I knew I was out of step with the 21st century.

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  5. Each to his own Robbie. Admittedly they seem a strange choice to be included in a wargames centric magazine. But in the end they still get people out of the house and away from the Xbox to play with figures.

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    1. Evening Paul,
      The daft thing is, I know some of these guys, and they have been wargaming for years. Why didnt they take their spokesperson, and sit them in a darkened room with his pants stuck on his head, sucking his dopey thumb.

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  6. Robbie- you beat me to the punch mate- saw the piece in WI-an above average issue BTW.
    Frankly reading the quote you underline I'm afraid they are absolutely right - what WE consider to be wargaming is dying - very slowly but its dying. It will see us out but "proper" historical Wargaming is going to snuff it in a generation or two.. It takes too much knowledge and effort for most these days and this trend is likely to continue- Look at the HUGE number of simple skirmish type games that are out there and still coming out where no braincells are required and the accent is on "fun" - where that word means dice rolling for the hard of thinking. Never forget we have done this to ourselves. It has actually been going on for years at least since the late 70s with the introduction of RPGs. So don't worry about it.

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  7. Morning Andy,
    I dont worry about the hobby , actually the hobby will find its own way, I think what sets me off, is this idea that the word Wargame frightens would be hobbyists not to have a look. Couple this to the bollocks that somehow justifys this sweeping generalisation that is what I take issue with. Each to their own I suppose, but I just wish people would grow a pair and say this is what we do, live with it.Aaaaaargh!

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    1. Morning Robbie- Todays world will take offence at anything they can get compen for- and of course the Lawyers take a cut. Personal freedom has gone down the pan- though not in the way many predicted - mostly we have done it to ourselves in the NAME of freedom "I choose to take offence it is my right"
      I always recall a line of Robert Hienleins
      "An insult is like a drink- only effective if taken"
      These days many are ready to take that drink before it has even been poured
      So chaps have to be careful perhaps.
      I'm not saying I agree or that it should be this way merely that currently is just IS. - to our shame.

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  8. Great rant, love it. Nothing new Robbie every thing comes around again if you wait long enough, of course in this day and age it's just easier to promote your views etc. Let them call themselves what they want, gamers, non gamers whatever I'm sure once a Zombicide player goes on a rampage killing real people some one somewhere will say it's all down to the gaming cult that promotes such behaviour.

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    1. You can tell Im a tad bored after last weeks excitement, you are right as usual, but Graham you have to make certain we dont give these daft people an inch, otherwise we end up in Hell on a handcart.

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  9. Your a moany old git, Robbie.. :o))

    Political correctness is almost a global disease, they teach it in the schools...

    Andy is right, the hobby as we know it is disappearing, not for any other reason than that the likes of us are the only ones who have time and energy to persue it, the youngsters are too busy trying to pass endless exams, and then make a living on the minimum wage.... any spare moments they have they go on the web/interactive device as they simply don't have time to sit down and do research and the like....

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    1. Steve,
      When I was in London I did quite a bit of people watching, as it was a beautiful weekend. The sun was shining, all was good in the world, yet watching young people, they all had their heads down tapping away on their phones, bumping into people etc. If they werent tapping, they were looking, and that includes when they are sat with friends, women etc, I honestly think that young people have become so very boring. Look around,ENJOY LIFE, enter into things, live a bit on the edge, become a Wargamer.

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    2. Steve only 1 point of disagreement really- They CHOOSE not to have the time. We - or at least I had plenty of exams Annual Exams until 14 then Mock O levels the O levels then mock A levels then A levels. the first year UNI then second year degree exams then Finals. Not to mention incidentals by choice such as Civil service and PGCE(which last I failed thank God).So how
      Robbie is right many of them are introverted miserable gits glued to their phones and the incredible inanities of "social media"

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  10. Oh dear, I so agree with you. I am an old style east end boy and was taught from an early age that if you think something is bollocks then say so. These folks and no, not just wargamers, use big words and complex arguments to avoid stating the bloody obvious. It now exists in every walk of life and it's BOLLOCKS. Like Brighton asking kids to state their sexual gender at 4 years old, like not being able to do anything without a full enquiry by "experts" when common sense is perfectly adequate. As for wargaming. I play battles with Toy soldiers. Sounds like a wargame to me. Last week my 9 year old niece and her dad played her first WARGAME she loved it , beat her dad and declared herself a wargamer. What can I say?

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  11. Ah Robert,
    The voice of sanity in a country full of inanities.

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  12. Just a quick note on you receiving messages on Facebook. You asked to join the group and I admitted you. I have since rectified that, so you should no longer receive FB messages from WB3D Gamers. If you do, please notify the admin, or me personally. I am sorry for any inconvenience caused - Neil Smith

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  13. Also, please note that while I am happy to debate the naming of our Club (WB3D Gamers), I will refrain from doing so at the moment while I consult my lawyer over your personal insults. I should have an answer on that by tomorrow - Neil Smith

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  14. As a member of the club, and it's a bloody good club, I think your rant is off the mark. Nowhere does it suggest we stop calling the hobby wargaming. It suggests that the current trend for less 'traditional' wargaming may eventually lead to that. I personally don;t think it will...

    It looks a conscious decision to keep the title of the club more generic to bring a wider range of gamers in. And the way the club is run it is easy for 'non-traditional wargamers' to try what WE consider wargaming, and then maybe get involved, even if only painting retinues for Saga or Lion Rampant. Who knows what they might end up doing...

    And if keeping the name generic brings new (hopefully young) people in (who might view traditional wargamers as dinosaurs obsessed with period detail and a different 'generation') then leaving the word from the club name is a good thing.

    And nothing suggested that wargaming would corrupt the youth and turn them into psycho-Nazi lovers. That view is, as you say, bollocks and should stay in the 70s and 80s...

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My 6mm Napoleonic set up.

My 6mm Napoleonic set up.
Austria 1809.

Austrian Hussars

Austrian Hussars
Hinchliffe figures

Austrian Grenzer

Austrian Grenzer
Austrian Grenzer

Smoggycon 2013

Smoggycon 2013
Smoggycon 2013

Smoggycon 2012

Smoggycon 2012
Smoggycon 2012

Smoogycon 2009

Smoogycon 2009
My French getting another beating