Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Dice Thrower in All of Us#3 - Avoiding 40k "Burnout"

By now, if your reading this post, its probably not your first visit to a 40k blog website, and will most definitely not be your last. Your probably one of the countless masses of 40k fans who check up on their favorite 40k websites weekly or daily, making sure to keep up to date with the newest tactics and strategies, as well as news and rumors. Your probably one of those people who listen to podcasts and hang out at the hobby shop to talk it up with fellow gamers. You probably crack inside jokes amongst your gaming buddies that involve women and not rolling double "1"s with the dice. If you agree with any of these statements, then you have the 40k "bug", that neverending desire to know more, play more, paint more, read more, and write more things 40k. We all have it here at The Forgotten Chapter, and it is one "bug" that we want to keep. We all have spent countless hours thinking about 40k, with no regrets whatsoever. BUT, what happens when that appetite for 40k begins to diminsh? How do we keep interested and involved in something that is slipping away? What happens when your start to experience... BURNOUT.......?

First, take a deep breath and set the dice down before you hurt somebody. No there wont be any self help seminars or talk about which parent didnt love you enough, there is only one thing that you need to answer for yourself. When did the hobby stop being fun? In that very question lies the whole root of the problem at hand! All of us got into this hobby becuase it is (or was in this case) fun. We wouldnt have spent a small fortune on something that didnt keep us enthralled with thoughts about futuristic armies battling it out for galatic domination, and how awesome it would be to design, create, and command our own fighting force that we can enjoy with our friends. There is one thing, you need to be honest with yourself. If you dont find it dun for a specific reason, see what you can do to change it. It has been proven that people with POSITIVE hobbies (and being an ax murderer is not one of them!) tend to have less depression and overall stress. It is beneficial to have a hobby like ours where we can go to escape our troubles and have fun. Try not to lose the enjoyment of this or any hobby you may have, for it may end up costing you more than just money. Now, with that clinical thought being said, lets get into some things that may deter us from the world of 40k.

Money-Of course, the almighty dollar (or euro, yen, pounds, llamas, chickens, or any other means of currency). This tends to be a very strong force that may deter us from the hobby. This one however, tends to be more extrinsic. Monetary restraints tend to be put on us by outside things, and may not mean that you dont love the hobby or that you want to stop gaming. Many of the people that get into this hobby have families, and most will have one eventually. These monetary restraints are something that can cause us to become stressed with what we dont have, and can cause us to be frustrated with the hobby itself. This frustration can lead people to completely set aside or abandon the hobby to ease the stress caused by this problem. We all understand that the needs of your family should come before anything else, and putting silly plastic models aside for them IS the right thing to do, but dont let this deter you from the hobby forever. Money or no money, you need to find time to do something constructive, and there are certain aspects of this hobby that are completely free. One for example is writing stories or blogging about 40k. This lets you stay in contact with the 40k community, and keeps you interested in the hobby without forcing you to spend loads of money on models and terrain. Most of us have friends in the hobby, who have at least one army, and some may be willing to let you use one of their armies on game night at their place. Others may be willing to split their force in half, and play a smaller game by just breaking an army in half and playing the two halves against one another. A similar idea involves the use of pdf's and free (but not illegal!!) services for getting 40k content. If you know someone who has a codex or a book that you want to read or use, just ask them if you can borrow it for a little while. Some hobby shops may even let you borrow or "check out" hobbying materials for a discounted rate. Please, dont let the lack of funds get you down, or keep you from enjoying the positive aspects of the hobby.

Boredom-This is probably one of the biggest things that causes burnout. We all get stuck in a rut, playing the same armies in the same scenarios with somewhat similar outcomes. We get bored with the hobby and begin to step away from it, which we then lose further interest. Even people that are fully immersed in the hobby can experience this too. Sometimes it seems like the "overexposure" to the world of 40k can cause this to happen, leading those to try and avoid playing or doing anything related to the hobby. The biggest thing to do here is to break the cycle of repetition. Repetition is not a bad thing when it comes to planning or working out a strategy or perfecting a scenario, but if it is caused by the lack of new ideas, challenges, or new gaming strategies, than repetition can kill the hobbyist. The best thing to do here is to remember that you are doing this for the fun of it, and that you need to get back to having fun. Expose yourself to new parts of the hobby, such as books or video games. Dont be afraid to buy a scenario book or start a brand new army, or maybe even buy new terrain. Inject brand new ideas and new strategies into your armies, and challenge your friends to mix things up too. There are literally endless amounts of things that can be done to get rid of boredom and monotony in the hobby, just as long as you are trying to keep the fun of it alive.

Lack of Support-This one can cause burnout in a multitude of ways. Family and loved ones may constantly hassle you about the costs of the hobby, or the time devoted to it that is not being spent with them. Sometimes its the fact that members of a gaming group stop playing and there are now less people to talk to and associate with about the game. It may even be that your local hobby shop has closed down and there is no other place that people go to hang out and promote the hobby. As dicussed by HighMarshalJames, the biggest and strongest support group for your hobby will usually be your gaming group. Luckily for us, everyone in our gaming group are all friends, and we all hang out even when not playing the game. We help each other with a lot of things unrelated to the hobby, but we also embrace and promote it however (and whenever) we can, even if that means giving support to one another involving certain ventures in the hobby. IF you feel that your getting burned out, talk to your gaming group about the latest 40K book they read and whether or not they would let you borrow it. Brainstorm ideas about new armies, or changes that could be made to existing armies. Talk about terrain and tactics, and what new tactics could be done with different units. Get your group engaged in more than just the same old game, and let them know if your having issues with boredom, money, or anything else that is hurting your enjoyment of 40k. It may sound girly and un-masculine to talk about your 40k problems, but we all have them from time to time, and you would be amazed what a strong support group of fellow gamers can do for your 40k spirit. Dont be afraid to venture out from your hobby shop and gaming group to find other support networks, and keep the hobby channels open so that you can get exposure to new ideas. If your gaming group is gone, then start a new one! If you dont have a strong support group, then reach out and find one. As long as your still having fun, and the hobby still captivates you like a 4 year old with a piece of candy, then the issues of support, boredom, and money will never stop you.

1 comment:

  1. Hey... Before 40K I was an axe murderer and quite frankly I enjoyed. I had to stop that hobby because my doctor said I had a high risk of Hepatitus B from all the blood going around.