-By: Elliott (PG_E2lio2tR)

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Here we are. 2016 is over. The start of a new year is upon us. Most people take this as a time to start fresh. Learn something new. Do something different then they have in the past. Strive to better themselves. Well, us gamers are the same way. Today, we are talking about some common New Year’s Gamer resolutions and how they can better ourselves and our game play.

The first is an easy one to do and with clear benefits to you. This one is to set a number of games to play with in the year. Some shot for 52 games in a year (one game a week ) some shoot for 100. The goal is to play more games. With more games under your belt, you get better  from the additional practice. You will also gain a better understanding of the rules from this because of having to repetitively use them. It is an easy one to aim for but it can help in multiple ways.  

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The next up is for those who want to take their game to the next level. It is to take part in X number of Steamroller events. You have put your time in practicing. You know your army and the rules of the game. You are ready for competitive play.  You shouldn’t expect to place right off the bat ( more on this in a moment). You want to get experience with this new dynamic of the game. Between Deathclock, list chicken and finding two lists that work for you in these events; there is a sizable amount of things to wrap your head around in the coming year. The idea here is to gain experience with these new aspects of the game and get to the point where they become part of your normal game play and planning.

This leads into the next one: Place in an event. Everyone goes into an event with two goals in mind. Having fun is always the first one. This is a game so if you are not having fun then why are you playing? The second is to win. Now, should you aim for first place? Sure, always aim high. But really you should try to place in the top three. Each is a good goal and a good target to shoot for. After you get third, aim for second place, then first. Use it as a way to motivate you to improve you skill and game. Each event is a chance to better yourself and get a spot higher than you did last time.

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This next one is a little less focused on a competitive mindset and more of a way to fight Faction ADD. Pick a faction to focus on for the whole year and stick to it for every game. Learn everything you can about it. How do the different casters work and what do they each bring to the faction? What is the best way to deal with gun lines or troop swarm armies? The best way to figure this out is to dive in and figure it out. When you keep switching factions, you get a general idea of the armies but never a real in depth one. By sticking to one faction for so long, you really get a sense of what each thing does and how to answer any question the can come your way.

To be honest, this is the one I usually suggest to new players. It is easy to do and helps them prepare for several things in their gaming career. By learning their faction in depth, the interactions and internal synergies start to become second nature and less time will be needed to look at the cards to see what the stats or special rules are for something. This way you are spending more time learning the core rules, how everything works and how to face the other armies with what you have. There is also less strain on the wallet. Even starting a small side faction can cause strain on the hobby budget. One army means everything you have will be able to play with everything else you have.

paintthethings1The last one I will talk about today is more of a hobby goal. Painted armies play better this is a fact (based purely on the fact that it looks cooler. That is how science works right?). Set yourself a goal for each month and for the year in total. Paint to those targets and work on fielding a fully painted force by the end of the year. You can also use this as a chance to improve your painting skills and learning new techniques. Learn how to highlight & shade. Learn how to use an airbrush or the 2 brush blending style. There are so many ways to paint that everyone can find something to learn and make their army their own.

Personally, I take part in the Warmachine & Hordes Painting FB groups painting challenge . Each month we all aim to have painted at least 1 point a day. So, a 10 point unit can take 10 days and a 21 point Jack can take 21 days. Just these two submissions would allow me to hit a 31 day month easily. It is a good motivator for me and helps me organize what I am doing every month. Otherwise, I would get overwhelmed with my backlog of things to work on. Last year, this helped me paint over 700 points worth of models. It is worth the work and helps in multiple ways.

You are not limited to just these. Find what you want to improve on and figure out how to do so. The point of these are to improve yourself. Pick something that will challenge you and make help improve your game.

My goal for this year is to stick to two factions, Trollbloods and Minions. Now, you may be saying “Hey Jerkface. You just said to limit yourself to just one army! What are you doing to us here?” Well this is what I am doing. Trolls will be my main faction this year and will mostly focus on them. Any minion thing I play with will need to be able to work with Trollbloods as well. This way whatever I pick up for a Minion army will ultimately build up my stable of options for my Trollblood army at the same time. The only exceptions will be beasts, warlocks and Targ, the minion warlock attachment. It is a simple trick to help fight my personal Faction ADD as well as build up different options for my main faction. If I wonder if Croak Raiders would work well in a Horgel2 army, I will be able to get them and build up two armies at one time and feel like I am doubling my investment that way. How is Barnabus with a Swamp Horror and Meat Grinder? Well since I could use most of that in a Trollblood army it is ok as well. It is a small thing but if it works I am going to do it.

Now go and figure out what you want and find a way to work to that goal. If you need help, ask us in the group. It is what we are there for . We are a community and we are here to help one another. Now, let’s go have some fun.

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