Big Rich enters the points debate (again!)

If you are a regular listener/reader, then you will know my lack of enthusiasm for using points systems for Historical wargaming.

Well, Richard Clarke, he of Too Fat Lardies fame, has once more sallied forth on this topic on the latest entry on the Lard Island Blog.

An interesting read, which I’m sure you will either love or hate, dependent upon which side of the fence you stand.

3 Comments on Big Rich enters the points debate (again!)

  1. As Henry Hyde knows, I had a difficult time transitioning from what I call the GW metric (aka points systems) to non-points systems (such as Black Powder). Okay, I’ll call it for what it was. I panicked. I couldn’t fathom how anyone could play a game without points. Then, I began playing games without points. It was awesome!

    We would create scenarios before we played. If we didn’t have time for that we made something up on the spot and plopped models down. Leaving points behind allowed us to concentrate on having fun and NOT on winning.

    Powergaming/tourney mentality is something I strongly associate with points-based games. Neil, like you I prefer leaving the points in a locked box, far from the gaming table.

    Richard Clarke’s article was fantastic!

  2. Some of the best games I’ve ever played are scenario lead non points based games, but I think there is still a place for points systems in certain scenarios

    For just being able to put a quick game together with the minimum of fuss, being able to turn up with x points of figures for some game is fine, it may not give you the best game you’ve ever played, but it does give you a game. Scenarios do allow you to build a force gradually which is great when you are starting off in a new period, but the other side of the coin is sometimes the figs you have brought may not be needed in any other scenario so you have to start again which some people may not like. Whereas if you play using points you still have x points that can be used again and again.
    It’s a tricky balance, what is needed if rules are based on scenarios is funnily enough; scenario books and if they can be written to use the same base forces as the last game but each time with some new additions then that will also allow new player in to the game

    So I’m going to sit on the fence here and say there is a place for scenario based games and points based games in our hobby, the thing that’s really important is to pick your gaming buddy’s properly so whatever game you play it’s fun.

  3. As MikeH says, points lets two players show up and have a good game. Isn’t that what this hobby is about? Having a good game? How one defines a good game and how one creates a good game will differ between players. Most of my games are casual and with people I don’t know well if at all. Points ensure we can both sit down and shove some lead without worrying that the other guy will show up with Tiger-II-and-SS-Sniper-uber-army option. A well drafted scenario will of course do the same thing.

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