I still enjoy the painting, converting & building stuff end of the hobby & a long time back in between space crusade & learning to play 40k (a number of years) all I done was paint models, in them days I didn't build an army I just bought what ever model I thought I might like to paint.
So It wasn't until my 5th child Patrick got to a certain age & started asking what the models are for & on hearing they where for a game asked could we play it, that I started to play 40k it was 3rd ed at the time.
Now playing 40k at that stage was with only a few model that I had which was mostly marines & nids ( as I had picked up space hulk at some point ) with Patrick picking the nids & me using the marines we set out on our little battles on the table top.
We even head off to a tournament down in Waterford with Patrick bring his nids & me bring my chaos which included a squad or possessed that costed some silly amount of points with all their up grades
Drop guard was an army that was very powerful & was my first taste of playing against an army that is built around using all the powerful things in the codex.
Next we headed to a GT that was taking place in a hotel in Liffey valley where we meet some of the lads from the DGG who had just moved from playing in the Royal Dublin Hotel to a new shop that had just been opened by one of their club mates & they were handing out cards, with Patrick playing Paul Q in the first game but I won't tell that story here.
So about 6 months later I eventually bit the bullet & head in one Wednesday night to the shop where I was to be luck enough to get a game against the Gipsy King playing an IG army this one was a lot different from Dans but did catch me out when some rough riders assaulted my terminators & made short work of them luckily I managed to recover & get the win.
After a couple of weeks I played in a little tournament in the shop I think I went W1 D1 L1 but I enjoyed it, so I was to enter my tournament playing stage of the hobby for which I was to real get a bug with my first win coming coming in a one day event in Limerick with me beating up a 12 year old on table one to win the tournament a head of Darragh Cullen (who had also won his 3 games) on vp's something I don't thing Darra ever forgave me for.
By this time Patrick had also joined the club & this was a club that was very much into tournaments but we also done some great other things like the HH campaign just as apoc was released which was to spark a massive arms race, ah the good old days of the tiger when me all had more money then sense.
For the next couple of years I was to become a out & out tournament player & not a bed one either if I may say so myself we where now in 5th ed & I had learned very fast that vehicle's where the way forward & building a list based around Vulken & speeders I was to finally win a two day event but this came at a price as it was an out & out spam list that just wanted to shoot you off the table with no assault in mind
This was to be the start of my falling out of love with tournaments after a short while I had ditched the list & had built my Wordbearers a completely different kettle of fish not based on the spam of min max spam but built around the characters in a book & for the first time an army that was build & painted together & that was spent a lot of time over on the conversions & painting end of things.
I was to take this army to a couple of tournaments events winning best painted army at one of them much to my delight but my tournament days where drawing to a close & my modelling & painting stage was starting inspired in no small way by a lad from Spain called Oroil who had joined the club & many a fun apoc day we where to have together.
I hadn't gone to a tournament by this stage for a good while haven had no real interest & some not so nice games we where in the cut throat days for trying to make the etc team, but something at a tournament caught my interest Darra had run the 40K tournament at NWG which permitted the use of FW models & rules I was not to attend the first one but Oriol & myself had decided to go to the next one with him bring a DCoK army & me doing an army I'd always wanted to do the Vrak's renegade guard list.
Sadly before we got to go Oroil was to head back to Spain to live but I want just the same with the army I'd built just for this event an army that I'd told Darra I was bring to win the best army award & also dragging Patrick a long with him bring my Wordbearers & a few nice FW models I had, not only did this result in me winning the best army award but owning the two best armies there & so was born the anyone but Frank award aka as the ABF award.
Since then I've gone to three other tournaments one of them being the NWG, I'd losted my way a bit tbh not only would I not build a good tournament list to go to a tournament with I wouldn't even build a half descent list to play a game in the club with I was using the sort of lists I use to build all those years ago when I was just playing Patrick in the house, playing with one hand tied behind your back like this is like been a priest it's not good for your well been in a certain way but not in the same way as the priest's I might add.
So I got to the stage where I was thinking of throwing the towel with playing 40K when I'd a chat with a good friend of mine a lad that talks a lot of sense & so I've decided that before I throw in the towel I'll play for awhile without the handy cap & see how it feels, I've also singed up to go to a tournament next month & while the list I've built won't be the best one there by a long way it should give me a fighting chance, with my next three gaming nights already booked up for different type of games I'm not going to get to many games in with this list tbh but with me going only hoping to put in a good showing not with any ideas of trying to win it that shouldn't be a be a problem I hope.
I played a game last Wednesday using some of the nasty units I'll have in my list & funnily enough I didn;t brake out in spots & while I don't want to turn back into the tournament player of yesteryear I hope to get back to the stage of enjoying all elements of the hobby.