Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Trouble in Paradise

Group dynamics in an age of war

In any wargaming group disparate personalities and goals sometimes clash. The mark of a good group is the ability to overcome or circumvent the most harmful conflicts while facilitating the hilarious.

A few examples from the eclectic SB wargaming group. They are a collection of excellent individuals who I thoroughly enjoy spending time with.

However, there are arguments occasionally. Christian enjoys a wider variety of games than other members of the group, who enjoy honing their skills on a select few. Paul, Andy and Roy are all skilled Warmachine players, which can sometimes be difficult for other members who are not as advanced. Mark loves Boozehammer more than life, and always insists on a game or two. Jim and Michael are diehard fantasy players, while other members of the group are inexperienced or ambivalent about the game. And of course there are those members who are rather boisterous at times, and tend towards over consumption, which may ruffle some feathers.

The point is is that there are varying currents in every group, and this is by no means a bad thing. One thing that the group is dealing with right now is a small disagreement between myself and fellow group member Ben. Last meeting we played a Roleplaying game. Our party, made up of Ben, Paul, Rob and I were very successful, and survived the entire dungeon without a single death. As we cleaned up the last few enemies I thought it would be funny to backstab one of my teammates, and Ben was the closest. A few dice rolls later and Ben's warrior Minotaur was sprawled on the floor, killed by a treacherous teammate. Ben, unfortunately, did not find it very funny, and now, several days later still seems to be nursing a grudge.

Every group has to deal with issues like this, and it is the mark of a strong group that they weather such storms. Do I regret killing Ben, now that I know that it may have cost me his friendship? Yes, and I intend to apologize to him at the next meeting. That may not heal all wounds, but hopefully the comradely spirit of wargaming will prevail and the battles will continue, happily and bloodily.


  1. Really?! You named your sexual-assaulting falcon Mark and everyone (including Yours Truly) thought it hilarious, but your had a larf after the adventure was done and someone got mad? It's a game. Next game, please...

  2. Aaron, since I know you love killing people, I plan on picking up http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/69120/cadwallon-city-of-thieves when it gets in next week. Me thinks you shall find it appropriately cut-throat. Also, I have Munchkin in the interim for more back-stabby fun!

  3. @ Mark

    Yes, having my character be emotionally traumatized by decades of molestation by an avian creature who bears an eerie resemblance to you is amusing and curiously similar to reality...

    @ Christian

    That sounds awesome!