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  • Forging Your Narrative

    52 Weeks of 40K - Week 4



    Having come to the miniature wargaming hobby from years of role-playing games, Iíve embraced the idea of using my miniatures to tell a story of epic conflict in the 41st Millennium. I wholly believe even the most competitive tournament player can increase his and his opponentís enjoyment of this hobby by peppering their games with bits of a story and letting the game itself determine the ending. How does one go about doing this? Iím glad you asked as Iíve got a few tips on that.

    Name your Units

    Every major battle in the history of warfare has names of generals, pilots and even grunts who did something heroic enshrined in the annals. Names such as Churchill, Patton and Rommel are remembered from World War II for their leadership, command and villainy. Why should it be any different with warfare on a miniature scale? The place to start is with your characters, champions and sergeants. You may be using named characters in your army but donít let that inhibit your imagination! What good is Marneus Calgar without the legions of Ultramarine sergeants who lead the individual units of power armored soldiers? Whether tactical squad or terminators, the models on your tabletop represent somebody who was born, trained and fought in the grim dark future. And they should have a name! Latin names are used for the Imperium of Man and you can find many examples online. Alternatively there are several name generators for characters in 40K you can make use of online as well.

    Create Epithets for Challenges

    I can say confidently that challenges between champions in 40K are more memorable when they happen between characters you and your opponent have named. But even still, you can color the exchange between your characters further. It only takes a few minutes of time to come up with an epithet from your armyís point of view to one of the other armies in 40K. My Chaos Lord Molitor loved to challenge loyalist sergeants by saying, "tell your false emperor to defecate or get off the golden throne!" And in 100% of the games in which Molitor said that, the imperial sergeant would stand up. This adds a memorable moment your opponent will remember about your game and for tournament players, a colorful epithet can score you fluff points in a competitive scene where you need every point you can get.

    Use the Terrain to Frame the Narrative

    If youíre playing on a battlefield full of ruins (which is a favorite for their awesome cover save) itís a good idea to discuss with your opponent what the situation which led to the meeting of your two forces was. Perhaps your opponentís Necrons were awakened by your Tyranidís invasion of an imperial Hive world. Or maybe you've got a lot of forests and hills on your tabletop, spend a couple minutes to come up with a reason your forces are squaring off in the wilderness. Context to the battle can increase your enjoyment of the specifics of the terrain youíre battling on.

    Create Elements to Enhance Your Battlefield

    Whenever a vehicle gets wrecked, but doesn't explode, it becomes a new piece of terrain. I've found turning a wrecked vehicle over can be dangerous for the topside of your model. One of the easiest, and most impressive, ways I've found to enhance the battlefield is creating smoke plumes for wrecked vehicles. There are many great tutorials on the web, but essentially, you only need pillow stuffing, black spray paint, an electric tea light and hot glue. With it you can add an element to your wrecked vehicles which enhances the feel of the battlefield by simulating a fiery wreck!

    In conclusion, I've found adding these elements greatly increases my enjoyment of miniature wargaming, even when I'm losing a game, Iím having a blast! And thatís the entire point of this hobby. If youíre not enjoying every moment of assembling, painting, basing and playing with your models, you may want to try a new hobby.
    This article was originally published in blog: Forging Your Narrative started by flatscan