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How to laugh when things go wrong? 
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Shade

Joined: Fri Aug 20, 2010 2:09 pm
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Hey guys,

Apart from Skaven and O&Gs, few armies really invite laughter at them (from their player) when something goes wrong (ie unit breaks, mage blows them-self into the realm of Chaos, warmachine blows up, freak missed "look out sir" roll results in death of character, etc).

So I'm just wondering how do you, if you do, laugh when these things happen?

This mainly comes to mind for me cause when I previously played I'd come to the hobby after years of living with my mother (who didn't encourage me to socialise and or play with other kids and, due to a couple of medical conditions that left her unable to keep up with me, kept me on a sedative medication) so I couldn't see the funny side of various things.

Just to end on a positive note I have improved since then, or I wouldn't be coming back, I mean now I actually find the concept of things like a warmachine blowing up or a (taking the O&Gs as an example) units attacking each other funny.


Mon Sep 20, 2010 9:15 am
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Arnold Layne
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Upside down. Everything is funny.

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Mon Sep 20, 2010 9:26 am
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Generalissimo
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It depends on the situation:

one-offs and totally absurd things I tend to find quite funny (e.g. rolling a triple one when using three dice to cast a spell or your uber dreadlord of uberness rolling 3 ones for his armour save, followed by three rolls of 1-3 when rolling for his 4+ regen save). I help myself to laugh by imagining how that would play out in real life. The image of a towering dreadlord, clad from head to toe in shimmering black magic armour, wielding a mighty sword of doom, forgetting to have put on his cog piece and being jabbed to death by a goblin spear shoving his spear where no one would ever want it to go is really quite amusing :)

Repeated bad dice rolls start to get on my nerves though. Being good at Warhammer and other dice based wargames involves - to some extent at least - stacking the odds in your favour, so that if a few dice go astray its not the end of the world. But when you get to a point where you have a whole series of rolls where you need less than the average (e.g. 3s or higher to hit) and you fluff them all, followed by your opponent making a long series of low-likelihood rolls it becomes frustrating because there's little point in playing. No matter how strategically you've played, you'll lose because of your dice rolls: not why any of us get into wargaming really.

Warhammer is actually not too bad for this, and 8th edition is good because it allows you to have more runs of bad luck without it being instant game losing (e.g. even if your entire front rank of infantry is wiped out in combat, you may still be stubborn and near the general and the BSB, so able to survive).

Other table top games are worse: Warmachine - which I love and is a great game - has particular issues: most of your dice rolls are done on two or three dice and often involve you needing 4s or 5s at the low end of 8s or 9s on the high end. Rolling a whole series of threes, fours and fives when you need sixes or sevens is particularly annoying, but not infeasible, and likewise your opponent rolling a series of nines, tens and elevens when he needs eights or nines is equally quite plausible. When two thirds of your ranged specialist army opens up with its weapons at the enemy and does no damage whatsoever, it is kind of pointless playing.

But even with repeated bad luck, I help myself to laugh by thinking about the fluff of it. My Cygnar army has earned a name for itself as ace marksmen: they always aim for glory trophy shots like hitting the radio mast on the back of the enemy warjack or cloth on the top of the enemy unit standard, then bragging to their mates about what a difficult shot they managed...in game terms thats the equivalent of them always failing a massive number of damage rolls that they REALLY should make. I amuse myself by yelling helpful tips to my troops like "don't aim at the fricking flagpoles!". Someday they'll listen :)

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Mon Sep 20, 2010 9:41 am
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Rending Star
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It really helps to realize that you mostly play to have a good time, not for some sort of competition. :)

Bye
Thanee


Mon Sep 20, 2010 10:38 am
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The Devil in Pale Moonlight
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It is a game of chance and while you can employ strategy and make various tacticial choices during the game, sometimes, you just can't beat the dice. That said, having a game where things constantly backfire on you, I admit, I have trouble in seeing the funny side sometimes and also in games where my dice is stellar because I know the game wasn't won with "skill" but rather by an extraordinairy luck on my part.

Mostly, though, I just take it in stride. It is just a game not a game where when you win you earn the title as the alpha male and get to mate with the females! Then again there are tournaments and players out there who take themselves way too seriously but thankfully these are quite easy to spot and avoid.

Cheers, D.

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Mon Sep 20, 2010 11:27 am
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Quote:
It is just a game not a game where when you win you earn the title as the alpha male and get to mate with the females!


A facet of the game that my wife (who doesn't play) likes very much :P

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Mon Sep 20, 2010 11:33 am
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Shade

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Red... wrote:
Quote:
It is just a game not a game where when you win you earn the title as the alpha male and get to mate with the females!


A facet of the game that my wife (who doesn't play) likes very much :P


LOL, oh I bet.
Maybe if we write that down somewhere obvious we'll get more female players :P


Mon Sep 20, 2010 11:52 am
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I just bark standard responses like "OMG!" "LOL WTF!" "ARGH silly muppet...", but I let my opponent know by expression, that I'm not actually raging and having a hissy fit, so I add laughter in when I make such exclaimations. Only I myself, would know whether I was actually pissed or not, having a bad run doesn't entitle us to spoil the game and the mood for our opponent, no one is to blame for bad luck no matter how stacked the odds are. After all, sound tactics doesn't mean you're a good general, you're going to need a bit of luck too.

Like Red, when luck just turns atrocious and plagues you from start to finish, it's not easy to manage a smile, let alone a laughter. At that stage I usually stay quiet and don't care about the game anymore, just throw dice and let it finish asap.

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Mon Sep 20, 2010 1:11 pm
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Yesterday's battle, the best moment was when my Empire Grand Master of the Order of the Black Bear, facing from his mount a flood of dwarven helmets, challenged whether there was a stunty who dared give him a good fight. A not-so-stunty dwarf general, on top of the shield held by two solid warriors, replied that my grand Master was going to die for that. My general made his 4 hits => 4 misses (too low). The dwarven general made his 4 hits => 4 misses (too high). My horse tried his single, weak hit, which did hit, did wound, did pass the armour. The two shieldbearers missed (too high). The MVP of the challenge was the horse :lol:

For more insight about the light side, see the following threads:
1. .....................................Murphy's unwritten rules of warhammer (some wise philosophy about what not to expect too much)
2. .....................................The "It Doesn't Come Around" thread when your dice rolls are so frighteningly consistent that you know what will happen before you roll.
3. .....................................Funniest/most unreasonable deaths and kills
4. .....................................Heroic Performances (the inexpected best)
5. .....................................Terrible rolling odds (the inexpected worse)
6. .....................................Worst battles you've ever played (if you lost, see that it could be worse)


All the time when I play against my sons, I threaten them to destroy, enslave or panic their armies. Each time they manage to destroy me, they're so happy! But I swear that my vengeance will be devastating.
It keeps the high spirit.
I play magic-heavy: they keep looking for IF/miscast. They don't care for the IF, they want to see a miscast!

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Mon Sep 20, 2010 1:19 pm
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Trainee Warrior

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I am famous for my bad luck during some tournaments. The best moment Was that I failed 9 leadership tests in a row. (ld 8 or 9) The first two were acceptable (used to it) Than it became irritating, and after it was funny litterally to see my whole army run away from terror causing Stegadons.

Against my kids sometimes it is very nice to see awfull bad rolls from my side. It makes us all a happy family. :D


Mon Sep 20, 2010 1:36 pm
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I don't actually lose much at games, so i really enjoy the opportunity to play a really good player and get beaten to a pulp.

While its just a game and all for fun, there is a competitive element when doing the right thing at the right time and having everything go as planned is a good feeling. That said though, rolling 9 consecutive ones for spellcasting is just funny.

Good plans mitigate bad rolling.

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Mon Sep 20, 2010 2:45 pm
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Rending Star
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Calisson wrote:
The MVP of the challenge was the horse


Don't laugh!

Empire horses are known for their combat ferocity!

Don't fear their lances, fear their horses!

Bye
Thanee


Mon Sep 20, 2010 3:09 pm
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Quote:
Good plans mitigate bad rolling.


Not always, and that's kind of the point. Sometimes its funny, sometimes its frustrating, but it does happen that bad dice rolling can ruin even the best of plans. In a game that involves rolling dice, if you roll nothing but ones and twos all game when you need threes or more, there's nothing you can really do.

Getting a combined flank, rear and front charge on the enemy is pointless if you fail to do him any wounds, he hits you back a huge amount of times and you fail all your armour saves, so that he does you masses of ACR back and then you fail all of your stubborn break tests.

I agree with you that generally its the case, but to some extent this thread is about the rarer times that that's not the case :/

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Mon Sep 20, 2010 3:52 pm
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Ah man, I've had my nerd rage moments.. you can't help but laugh though when you're playing Skaven, Ogres or OnG. If only all armies were created with lulz in mind.. just remember it's a game, and you're not getting ahead in life by getting pissed at losing things. It gets frustrating, but you can always play another game, try another strategy, or talk to your opponent how lame it was to lose x unit to y spell. ;)

Calisson wrote:
The MVP of the challenge was the horse :lol:

Hey man, that happens almost every game. FEAR THE HORSES! :P

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Mon Sep 20, 2010 4:16 pm
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The Devil in Pale Moonlight
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Night Rider wrote:
Red... wrote:
Quote:
It is just a game not a game where when you win you earn the title as the alpha male and get to mate with the females!


A facet of the game that my wife (who doesn't play) likes very much :P


LOL, oh I bet.
Maybe if we write that down somewhere obvious we'll get more female players :P


I can just imagine Dave Attenborough going;

"...and as you can see the Alpha male moves with a commanding presence among the herd, ever watchful for any competing male who would challenge his mating-rights." :D

The times I played VC I've learned to laugh as my lords untimely deaths with a miscast or when taken down by a lesser model. The former especially as you can envision it as an epic battle where the vampire lord prepares for a massive spell and doing so blowing himself up and the entire army going POOF around him. Meanwhile, the opponent's army is standing there... "uh, was that it?!".

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Mon Sep 20, 2010 4:26 pm
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Laugh? The answer is to biatch about everything that went slightly against you then blame a hangover/illness/lack of sleep until your opponent concedes you are, in fact, the better general.

Fun doesn't matter, what's important is that they accept your superiority for simply being a dark elf player! :roll:


Tue Sep 21, 2010 12:32 am
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I witnessed a game a few weeks ago where a friend of mine during his magic phase and miscasted with two wizards who both rolled dimensional cascades and didn't lose power dice but instead both wizards were removed as casualties.

The odds of that are stunning. As well as depressing I think.

I told him it was okay to cry. No one would judge him. Then I judged him.

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Tue Sep 21, 2010 1:05 am
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Shade

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danceman wrote:
Night Rider wrote:
Red... wrote:
Quote:
It is just a game not a game where when you win you earn the title as the alpha male and get to mate with the females!

A facet of the game that my wife (who doesn't play) likes very much :P

LOL, oh I bet.
Maybe if we write that down somewhere obvious we'll get more female players :P

I can just imagine Dave Attenborough going;

"...and as you can see the Alpha male moves with a commanding presence among the herd, ever watchful for any competing male who would challenge his mating-rights." :D

LOL :D

Best reply of the thread so far.

Fr0 wrote:
Ah man, I've had my nerd rage moments.. you can't help but laugh though when you're playing Skaven, Ogres or OnG. If only all armies were created with lulz in mind.. just remember it's a game, and you're not getting ahead in life by getting pissed at losing things. It gets frustrating, but you can always play another game, try another strategy, or talk to your opponent how lame it was to lose x unit to y spell. ;)

Heh yeah. With those three it's totally within their fluff that something will go wrong so when it does you can just imagine it happening and it does become funny. The other armies are fairly serious (especially ones like the Dwarves and High Elves who are in decline) so you're less likely to laugh if something like that happens.
I think I may end up collecting one of those armies to balance out the serious Druchii - you know make up for a howler with the Druchii by hauling out the funnies, if I win great if not then I'll get to laugh as they blow themselves into the Chaos Wastes in one way or another, run away from the least scary units in the game or something.

But yeah, that's very true - it is just a game.


Tue Sep 21, 2010 2:19 am
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In a true druchii way, I suggest you sacrificed the dice which made your sorceress blow up - as an example for the other dice. Keep a dagger at hand, just in case, it might impress them. The more impressive the sacrificial ceremony (put all dice in a circle, with the expiatory victim(s) in the middle), the more effective for future rolls.

Myself, I remember once my sorceress who miscast for the second time in a row to her death: my comment was that such an incompetent deserved to die.
It's no longer possible now that miscasts are not anymore failed spells.
Of course, when I see lesser races's sorcerers blow themselves up, I can't help remind them that only elves really know about magic.

Also, in Warhammer-Empire forum, I remember reading someone who realized that unpainted or proxied models have a strong bias toward underperformance. The good point is that it incites people to paint their models.
For another, it is rookie 1st-battle-since-been-painted models who are impressed by the battle.

Myself, I noticed once that some music with bagpipe in the background helped tremendously my opponent's goblins. Since, I noticed that my favourite bagpipe song happens always during my most terrible dice rolls or my opponent's most improbable ones, whatever the armies on the field. Obviously the dice we're using hate that music, despite I still love it (more than winning - I know, I take a chance).
Now, my sons beg for music when we play.
Only now I realize: my last battle happened last sunday, it was already late in the evening, so no music. I won by a very solid massacre (1750pts to 400pts) using nearly the same opponents as during the previous game where I was wiped out - with music.

Often, we give orders to the dice, either during our turn or during our opponent's:
"I'll show you how dwarves roll a six" - 6 rolled, dwarves seized initiative, I start the game with 3 dwarven units at 6".
Later on, when my son fired a warmachine, I influenced his rolls: "Mis-fire-mis-fire-mis-fire" - misfire rolled, never mind, a dwarf engineer rerolls that - "a-gain-a-gain-a-gain" - misfire! let's see which result - "one, one, one, one" - ka-boom!
Guess who was blamed...
But I used that trick so often that now, he hardly ever brings anymore his self-blowing anvil.


Find out what specific circumstance creates bad luck for you. Blame it.
But let it happen again.

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Tue Sep 21, 2010 6:06 am
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Shade

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Some funny responses and good suggestions so far guys :)

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danceman wrote:
I can just imagine Dave Attenborough going;

"...and as you can see the Alpha male moves with a commanding presence among the herd, ever watchful for any competing male who would challenge his mating-rights." :D


Tue Sep 21, 2010 8:48 am
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Trainee Warrior

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If I am totally losing, then my goal goes from "50% have fun/50% win" to "100% have fun". This usually means:

1. Making sure my opponent is having fun. If this hasn't been true before, I will redouble my efforts.

2. Being 'fluffy' and going for a good narrative. Of *course* my dreadlord will make a bee-line across the combat to challenge that Chaos Champion on his Juggernaught. That slow bastard can't possibly hurt Naggarothe's finest! And those ten remaining spearmen--it is their fault we are losing, so pasting them against a huge horde of beastmen is only just. Your army will be back next game; grind it up in the name of a good story.

3. Celebrating small victories. "Boo ya! that White Lion won't be bothering me no more...even if it took six executioners to bring him down..."

4. Remembering that I have often managed to salvage a draw or even occasionally a win from a completely improbable position.


Tue Sep 21, 2010 2:17 pm
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Shade

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afeinman wrote:
If I am totally losing, then my goal goes from "50% have fun/50% win" to "100% have fun". This usually means:

1. Making sure my opponent is having fun. If this hasn't been true before, I will redouble my efforts.

2. Being 'fluffy' and going for a good narrative. Of *course* my dreadlord will make a bee-line across the combat to challenge that Chaos Champion on his Juggernaught. That slow bastard can't possibly hurt Naggarothe's finest! And those ten remaining spearmen--it is their fault we are losing, so pasting them against a huge horde of beastmen is only just. Your army will be back next game; grind it up in the name of a good story.

3. Celebrating small victories. "Boo ya! that White Lion won't be bothering me no more...even if it took six executioners to bring him down..."

4. Remembering that I have often managed to salvage a draw or even occasionally a win from a completely improbable position.


Afeinman, those are some great suggestions thanks :)

I think in addition to the mongrel Elves I'll also collect one of the three funny armies; Ogres, Orcs and Goblins or Skaven. Although more slowly.

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danceman wrote:
I can just imagine Dave Attenborough going;

"...and as you can see the Alpha male moves with a commanding presence among the herd, ever watchful for any competing male who would challenge his mating-rights." :D


Wed Sep 22, 2010 9:04 am
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Generalissimo
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Quote:
2. Being 'fluffy' and going for a good narrative. Of *course* my dreadlord will make a bee-line across the combat to challenge that Chaos Champion on his Juggernaught. That slow bastard can't possibly hurt Naggarothe's finest! And those ten remaining spearmen--it is their fault we are losing, so pasting them against a huge horde of beastmen is only just. Your army will be back next game; grind it up in the name of a good story.


That's a very good idea :)

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Wed Sep 22, 2010 11:56 am
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I do, I haves ogres as well.


Wed Sep 22, 2010 12:06 pm
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