Sunday, 8 January 2017

Are Tournaments Even Playing 40K Anymore?

I run two invitational Warhammer 40K tournaments a year for my local players. I'm always looking at ways to make the events better and more appealing. After all, at some point I want to open up the events to more players at some point and make these events something good for the local region.

I run the rules as written. If it is legal in a regular 40K game then it is legal for the tournament. Forge World units and rules equally suitable. But then these events are designed to be competitive. I want players to bring their best lists and their A game.

And that is where I find my current level of confusion and surprise. I keep looking online at other event's tournament rules and scenarios for inspiration. What I find surprises me. It looks like so many tweak the rules, changing rules, disallowing perfectly fine units and options, and using bland looking home-brew scenarios. It looks to me as though tournaments are not playing 40K but some strange hybrid of their own making.

A tournament should be fun but competitive. I don't think players should not be penalized in army selection and the rule book missions are perfectly suitable for tournament play. Now I do prefer those missions which use the tactical objective cards and I can understand the point of view which says they are too random for tournament use but in the couple of occasions that they have been used for our tournaments they worked fine.

It's hard to balance these things and I guess I'll just keep looking and pondering ways to make our invitational events fun.


  1. I agree completely, and it's one reason I haven't and don't intend to play any ITC style tournaments. I find keeping up with the actual 40k rules difficult enough with the limited time and funding of a parent let alone learning a completely new set of rules on what I'm allowed to do and what works differently just for a tournament.

    I do have some sympathy regarding forgeworld units, as I feel the number produced for the various factions and the different locations for rules and method of writing rules unbalances the system, but equally I realise if you've spent probably hundreds on forgeworld models you'd want to use them as often as possible.

    1. Years ago we were all very much against Forge World because at the time those units were far too powerful compared to the regular codex units. These days things have changed and they fit perfectly well with the current rules set.