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Power Gaming and Why I Hate It

I HATE power gamers. Despise, loathe and another 15 synonyms on top of that.

What is a power gamer you ask? I define a power gamer as a person who must win at all costs, and doesn't care who they hurt to accomplish that objective. A power gamer will spend their time developing a list that is nigh-unstoppable. The list is usually a glass hammer, in the fact that it will crush any reasonable take-on-all-comers list.

However you can develop a list to defeat the power gamers list, if you are willing to devote a similar amount of time and money to develop a specific list that is devastating to the power gamers list, but it will in turn be easily defeated by almost any other list out there. I saw this a lot in Games Workshop game systems, especially 40k. The power gamer mindset was also inherent and actively encouraged in their system. The constant "codex creep" that forced you to buy and deploy the latest army to have a fair shot at winning. A power gamer is also unable to "ease up" on their opponent. They have to use their super killer list on everyone, especially on the kid who is just getting into the game and doesn't know or understand all of the rules.

To pull out a rule from the just-released codex that your opponent might not haven seen before now, that allows your super-uber killy unit to wipe out their entire army without losing a model, that is cruel and counterproductive. If your only objective is totally crushing any opponent, I won't play you a second time. If you don't take the hint that I won't play with you when you use that (or a similar) list, that's your problem, not mine. Please, always remember this:

The object of the game is to win.

The purpose of the game is to have fun.

Never confuse the two.

We should all be ambassadors and mentors for whatever game we play. We should encourage young and new players who are interested in the games we play. I don't suggest you "throw" a game against them. However, if your opponent makes a tactical mistake in deployment or use of their units, a game pause, explanation of tactics and a "do-over" is certainly called for. You also don't drive for that kill at maximum efficiency.

If your opponent is not having as much fun as you are playing the game, you're not doing it right. Take heed and learn.

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