Breaking the Mali-Fast

A couple of posts ago, I mentioned that the local Malifaux groups has been on something of a hiatus recently. In fact, it seems that, over the last year or so, there has been a pretty steady decline in the group.I'm sure there are a number of things responsible for this and the local Henchman and I had a discussion over the weekend about what we thought those things may be.

As the leader of the group, his natural inclination was to see himself as the common denominator, but I don't think this is the case at all. The truth is that, with the vast array of miniature games out there nowadays, I believe that the only way a game can hope to survive is for it to have a vocal, active and enthusiastic group leader, like a henchman. Without an active voice keeping the game interesting and active, there are just too many distractions.

I use the word distraction there, which I think is another key to the problem. Maybe this is only my perception, but it seems like most gamers, at least most of them I have met, tend not to have a single game that involves 80-90% of their hobby. It seems that everyone has an old 40k army, or a Fantasy army they are working on, as well as one or two WarmaHordes factions, a Malifaux crew or two and growing collections of X-Wing, Dropzone Commander or, I don't know, Deadzone? For most gamers then, these other games are not distractions, they are simply other games. This means that, when they have gotten bored of Malifaux, (or are left want more from Gencon, or aren't sure about the revision to the rules), they simply move on to the next game.  This means that those of us gamers in the minority, such as our Henchman and myself, start to wonder what happened to the group. It hasn't gone anywhere except on to the next game.

So how does a henchman, or those few left in a group, rekindle the flame?

The obvious answer is to make sure to play the game. My own Malifaux hiatus is slowly coming to an end, as we managed to get a good game in on Sunday. I say good because it is good that we played. However, it was immediately clear that I've been away for quite some time and my memory, particularly when it comes to those small changes between editions, is rusty at best. Fortunately, my opponent was somewhat rusty as well and forgave my multiple mistakes.

While I came away with a win on this one, I need to mark it with a large asterisk. This was a refresher and, before I can start claiming real victories again, I need to get back in the habit of playing.

In the meantime, I'm going to do what I can to help get the local group going again. The nice thing about Malifaux is that it has a large and supportive following, both on the forums and facebook groups. I'll probably turn there for some more advice about re-energizing the scene, but regular, scheduled games will probably go quite a long way...here's hoping anyway.

More to Come.

-Nick

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