I’ve been playing Space Marine as I’m reviewing that badboy, and it’s had me thinking about how I failed to truly nail the nerdgasm that is Warhammer, Games Workshop and all that shit as a child.
See, I played Space Hulk on the Amiga and it made me happy. Why wouldn’t it? Giant armoured men shooting and punching Aliens rip-off Genestealers in the future, all sci-fi’d up the joint. Marvellous. I wanted in. It was based on a board game, for which I asked and – for a Christmas present – received.
That was where it all went wrong, really. While the tiny, paintable figures were cool as shit (and if you argue otherwise, you are a moron or a girl), I did not have the artistic inclination to make them look anything other than ‘slathered in yellow’, ‘doused in green’ or ‘saturated with red’. So that aspect – the obsessive, detailed painting – was out.
But that’s not the most important part – no, the most important part is the game, yeah? Yeah, apparently. But the fucking rules. Jesus. I mean, I still remember them because I studied them quite hard to try and figure out how to play the thing, but I always resorted to just rolling dice for moves and going “PEOW PEWO DUKKA DUKKA DUKKA” for combat, rather than spending Command Points (I think it cost one to turn 90 degrees). Eff that ess, as my tiny child’s brain said.
Thing is, my most favouritest videogame, UFO: Enemy Unknown, works on this exact movement points-based principle. Obviously I need animation and sound and mouse clicks to make me give a shit. Hmm.
Anyway, yeah, I also played ‘proper’ Warhammer 40k once, and it shocked me even more. It was a case of measuring movement – you were allowed to go five inches forwards, or something. It was honestly quite baffling at the time.
I also failed at enjoying any visit to Games Workshop ever, as I just didn’t fit in with this brand of nerd. Also the people who worked there (the one in Meadowhall, near the big Boots, next to the exit) were damn rude.
So I am sorry, nerdlingers. I never got into that whole thing, try as I might. I’m still one of you though – just in a different way. And if you have any tiny, (well-)painted men you want to donate my way I’d be happy to stand them next to my other stupid toys I have at work.