Over the past few weeks, I've been looking at the way UFS is played, and what can be done to revive the large playerbases the UK once had, as it seems to me that the bad taste left behind by Block 3 still lingers, and nothing has been done to pull players back in for a while. Having looked at the grandeur that is Set 14 (I really do love this set that much), it has occured to me that I should not have to take all this splendour by myself, and that we should spread UFS' wings once again as players, as I think that if such a thing occurs, it may bring the whole thing into FFG's attention a hell of a lot more.
With any luck, I am hoping to be a part of Colchester's Games Club's committee within a few weeks, which will enable me to try and really push UFS' into people's faces . I'm thinking starting off with sealed deck tournaments, and using Quest For Souls as a major part of it, possibly using a copy of Soul Calibur IV (which is awfully cheap right now) to try to pull people from outside our normal circle into being interested in partaking. While using outside prizes isn't exactly normal protocol, I say push the boundaries a little bit if the reward is worth it. I could then move on to rekindle the Ladder League I created for last year, as it got quite a fanbase, and the themed tournaments always went down quite well, as it provided something a bit quirky.
I counted up the number of players in Colchester who regularly play UFS and occasionally play it. I discovered that we have 8 people who play regularly, with another 4 who play slightly less regularly, but certainly enough to warrant being spoken of. While some people might say that 12 is not a small number, it isn't big enough for my liking. Having looked around at the people who also play Yugioh and Magic down at our games hall, I reckon that with a push, I could grab at least another 7 or 8 people and convert them to play UFS as regularly as the rest of us. Put simply, I won't be happy until I'm pulling in 20 players per tournament. I haven't held tournaments in a while, purely because I just haven't had time, but if I start up again, I want them to work and I want them to work well.
I'd like to point out how fantastic Ross' legacy banned list is. The reason I have barely looked at legacy is because it just seems so damn boring with all the broken stuff thats sitting at the table. But with this guideline, I think it'll be possible to run more Legacy tournaments and therefore be able to pull back people who used to play UFS, but got bored with the control wars that persisted so often throughout last year and the bigger half of this year. The idea of 'Old Dogs, New Tricks' could also be put to much better use without having complaints about broken characters. So yeah, thank you Ross and the other Sheffield players for that, love it
I also think it would be a good idea to try and think of ways to make the forums more active, as mouth of word is what makes these games big, and loioking at how horrifyingly dead these forums have been of late (the UK one in particular). I'm thinking of possibly having everyone who wants to play in tournaments register on the forums so that they can discuss the outcome of tournaments or who they feel is over/underpowered. If we're getting newer players to do this, then it'll encourage older players to try to help them and get involved in the discussions themselves. Perhaps making the UK forum more lively will help to make other players want to look into it and further the game even more. It may also get the rest of the forum buzzing across the pond too in a chain reaction. FFG might not look at the forums all that much, but when prospective new players look at them and don't see a lot happening, it's not going to look interesting, is it?
The reason I've posted this big ol' rant is that I believe that with such a nice set coming through, that it would be nice to get the playerbases of old back, and I wanted to help Colchesters playgroup, and everywhere elses by trying to provide ideas and insights into what might work in getting everyone into NEWFS. I realise that most people believe that FFG should be doing more to advertise their own game than us players should, but the fact of the matter is that they aren't right now, and no amount of complaining is going to change that, so I think that we should take matters into our own hands a little and really push this fabulous game at people as much as possible in order to provide real growth again. Remember when UFS was the 3rd biggest CCG in the world? Wouldn't it be awesome to have that back again? So many peopled do so much work for UFS that it's great as it is (you guys know who you are), but I'd love to be able to go onto these forums and see loads of tournament reports and just lots of people chatting again, because to me, the greatest pull of this game is it's social aspect, and at the moment, it feels like thats been lost a little bit and I really miss it.
Well, hopefully people who read this can take something from it and not just think it's silly ol' Joe ranting again. Hope to hear from everybody soon.