The Frugal Gamer and Spring Cleaning

I’d like to write about the new ‘frugal’ outlook I’ve been developing over the last few years. This Spring I’ve had a week to inventory my hobby and gaming materials collection. Since I’ve all but abandoned video and computer gaming(I’ll also leave out comic books….I know!) this will be about my tabletop hobby. I want to buy a home in the near future, and need to consolidate my belongings, and downsize where needed/possible. I’d also like to spend more time gaming in the future, less time buying, collecting, building and painting. In this post I’d like to lay out some stategies, goals and a plan to achieve them.

Although, I’ve aquired and sold off various games and accessories over the years, selling things off isn’t one of my goals. Utilizing, playing and painting the models and games with what I have is the plan. This is the best return for the investment of time and money. Remaining motivated, interested and and enjoying the process is the challenge. Spending little to no money, and being entertained is the goal. Over the next few years I will have a modest entertainment budget. The plan is to spend only what is needed to maximize enjoyment, and usage of the armies and games I’ve got, and will actaully play. I will buy paint, and brushes. I may have to update certain rules, but only if I really plan on using and maintaining an army in a certain system for play in tournaments, conventions or game stores. In some cases I will re-evaluate how models can be used, for what systems, how I can find multiple uses for models. I’d like to account for all the books and models in my collection. Some things may just be for reference or inspiration. But there are many rulesets, I’d like to incorprorate using exisiting models. In some cases I’d like to learn to play a game I don’t own models for. At this point, that would be Hordes(Privateer Press), for example. I bought the book, but I’m not going to invest in any models at this time. If I achieve certain goals, I may consider adding a force for this game in the future. I’d like to try the game out with my friend Mikes models, to see if I really like it. Or I could just play with him, using his models. In fact that may be the best plan! I need to start thinking in new ways. I don’t need to OWN every army. I can borrow and play against some of them, that will still be fun, and more economical with time and money. Realistically, I will never have the time, money and space to own all the cool armies and games that do and will exist. The trick is to focus on a few armies, and choose very carefully any new games or armies. Finally, I have a vision. An ultimate goal. I want a nicely stocked game room, in our new home. Currently I have a great space in the basemant of the place we rent. The last few years, I’ve gotten more and more games of 40K under my belt, and I’d like to expand my repetoire of games, and have painted armies ready to play a variety of miniatures games.  I’d like to have regular gaming nights with friends, that could involve ready to play scenarios, and missions, campaigns based more on stories and themes, then specicific rule-sets or competiton. I’ll stilll maintain some competitve armies in a few systems, perhaps. But I’d like to have games anyone can sit in and learn to play, and some people may learn some more complex games eventually, for example SPACE HULK could lead to(40K) Combat Patrol, then small CITIES OF DEATH or PLANET STRIKE games, and beyond. To sum it all up, I plan to spend little to nothing. I’m going to figure out how to use everything I have, and multiple uses for models where possible. In the future I will be more realisitic about starting anything new, and maximize using what I have. Learning and playing the games. Finding others to play, who know the rules, or can learn, and having casual games anyone can play. I’ll need to do the work to ultimately have the games room, I envision. Not just the space but the games, terrain and organiziation to enable a fun, social gaming experience.

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