I stopped by my local game sore (Game Vault) the other weekend to see the guys finishing off a recent campaign. With no army, it's hard to get into those kinds of things, but the guys were kind enough to humor me and loan me some Space Marines for the time being.
I didn't participate in the final game, but did stop by for a second and snapped this pic at the bottom of the first turn. As I was standing there, I got to thinking about the size (points wise) of games I enjoy playing the most.
I like 1500 point games more than anything else
I don't know exactly why, but 1500 points is the level I enjoy the most. I'm not a big fan of 1750 and higher or even going down to 1250. Maybe because it's just enough points to get a few important units, but not so much that you start tossing things in there to fill up space.
You need to be careful what you spend your points on at 1500. There is very little room for "excess." Once you go above it, the games seem to last longer (naturally) and it almost feels like they can drag out sometimes. When I play smaller point games, it seems like some armies have certain advantages that really come into effect at the lower point levels.
1500 points is a challenge for me in terms of list building and playing. I can take my time and bring some strategy to the game. Having only six units in my army helps, but that's not the point.
The games tend to move fairly quick and don't take forever to play either. While 1500 points doesn't capture the "feel" of the 40k universe for me, they allow me to play and exercise my brain with little toy soldiers.
I like Apocalypse games for the feel
Follow me here, I like 1500 point games most of all. But... if I want to get the "feel" of the 40k universe, it's Apocalypse all the way. Here's the caveat though: You have to choose the type of people you play with carefully.
Apocalypse games are an absolute blast. Models go down on the table by the handful and come up just as quick. For me, this type of gaming isn't about the mental exercise I get at 1500 points, this is all about two epic forces clashing in a spectacular fashion and telling the story.
It has nothing to do with the rules. It has nothing to do with exact measurements, saving throws or any of those other rules we all get wrapped up in with our smaller point games. I'm just there to watch a huge battle unfold before my eyes. I'd go so far as to say if you show up to an Apocalypse game looking to make sure you win, you've already missed the point of the game.
If you have to look a rule up, then I'm of the thought you should just decide what would be the coolest thing to happen in terms of the story and then go with that. Who cares what the exact rule says? Are we going to spend our day referencing exact wording on obscure rules or are we going to level this city here? Keeping the game moving and having someone else who is like minded when playing this kind of game is an absolute necessity I think.
So I'm curious... who else has a double side like this? I know 1500 points is not the standard around here where I play and Apocalypse is not seen all that often, but I still love them both. It's all the other point levels I can do without.
And if you're interested in a good laugh, check out The Rending Pony.