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BlueMusketeer28

Competetive vs. Casual: Why the Clash

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It's not a huge deal but I have noticed a clear divergence here. Some people are all about the competetive scene, others only care about casual play, and then there's people like me, somewhere in between. Anyway there just seems to be some flack that gets thrown around fairly regularly, from discounting lists that are meant to be casual, or claiming that competetive less thematic lists ruin the game. My opinion is it's just a game and I love both types of squads. But seriously, why the flack? I just don't see why the passions need run so high when we are all just sharing thoughts on a hobby. I don't know, it's just my crazy opinion for the day.

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The short answer is because we all have different ways we like to enjoy this game, but since we have to play with other people we're forced to compromise. My favourite way to play, for example, is scenarios at 150 points or more, utilising only or jostle OT ships. The further from that ideal that I get, the less I enjoy the game.

Edited by Chucknuckle

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It's true, from a certain point of view.

 

You can feel the conflict in a gaming environment when some players enjoy pushing their plastic toys around a map, while others act as though their value as a human being will be judged according to their win/loss ratio.

 

I try and promote a Fun-At-All-Costs (FAAC) attitude so that Win-At-All-Costs (WAAC) players can stay the FAAC away.

 

Having stated that, X-Wing is a game that does suit competitive play.  The rules are tight and the game play is fairly clean.  Though it is unfortunate to see some grown adults who need tissue boxes next to them during a tournament.

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It's not a huge deal but I have noticed a clear divergence here. Some people are all about the competetive scene, others only care about casual play, and then there's people like me, somewhere in between. Anyway there just seems to be some flack that gets thrown around fairly regularly, from discounting lists that are meant to be casual, or claiming that competetive less thematic lists ruin the game. My opinion is it's just a game and I love both types of squads. But seriously, why the flack? I just don't see why the passions need run so high when we are all just sharing thoughts on a hobby. I don't know, it's just my crazy opinion for the day.

Some people prefer to just play the game and not have to worry about getting screwed by matchups or OP broken ****.

Some people apparently don't like the competitive, "cut throat" atmosphere that they perceive comes out of tournament play. See: Intentional draw fiasco. The My Little Pony thread in the off topic forum has what, 15 pages now? Yeah, they want the game and its community to be a hug box.

IMO, I think FFG could do a better job of winning casuals over and getting them into tournament play. Officially supporting the Top Gun format for example. A format where a new player at least has a chance and isn't crushed instantaneously by Palp Aces invincible ship bull or U-Boats wiping their ships.

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Are there people out there who really think there is only one correct way to play the game?  My impression is that strict casuals and strict competitives mostly just don't interact with each other and default to a 'play and let play' setting, to say nothing of those who play some of both types.  I've only seen a few cases where actual tensions flare up, like when the Fly Casual article popped up, a few people complained that it was a waste of time (since it had no tournament or upcoming release - associated information) and did some hating on FFG's marketing team.  But I can't for the life of me see any good reason why either group would really have a beef with the other.

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IMO, I think FFG could do a better job of winning casuals over and getting them into tournament play. Officially supporting the Top Gun format for example. A format where a new player at least has a chance and isn't crushed instantaneously by Palp Aces invincible ship bull or U-Boats wiping their ships.

Yes and no.

 

I can see how FFG could create an alternate tournament format, but if it is still attended by WAAC jerks (yes, I called them jerks) then nothing has changed.

 

Individual gaming communities, FLGSs and clubs have more impact upon the atmosphere of their tournaments.  Rooting out WAAC wankers (yes, I called them wankers) is important.

 

However, to what extent do you continue to hold a newbie's hand?  I will tell newbies, upfront, that they will probably get crushed in their first tournament.  How else are they supposed to learn?  If they pay to play, then that's what they are going to get - some hardcore meta squadrons of doom.  Provided everyone plays by the rules and in good spirits, there's not many opportunities for a newbie to be hugged all the way through Swiss rounds without taking some kind of beating.

 

If a newbie doesn't feel ready for a tournament, then they need to spend more time on a casual Thursday night.

 

The older I get, the less tolerant I am for grown adults who act like spoiled children when they are playing games with plastic toys.  It's disturbing to witness how fragile some gamers can be.

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It's not a huge deal but I have noticed a clear divergence here. Some people are all about the competetive scene, others only care about casual play, and then there's people like me, somewhere in between. Anyway there just seems to be some flack that gets thrown around fairly regularly, from discounting lists that are meant to be casual, or claiming that competetive less thematic lists ruin the game. My opinion is it's just a game and I love both types of squads. But seriously, why the flack? I just don't see why the passions need run so high when we are all just sharing thoughts on a hobby. I don't know, it's just my crazy opinion for the day.

Some people prefer to just play the game and not have to worry about getting screwed by matchups or OP broken ****.

Some people apparently don't like the competitive, "cut throat" atmosphere that they perceive comes out of tournament play. See: Intentional draw fiasco. The My Little Pony thread in the off topic forum has what, 15 pages now? Yeah, they want the game and its community to be a hug box.

IMO, I think FFG could do a better job of winning casuals over and getting them into tournament play. Officially supporting the Top Gun format for example. A format where a new player at least has a chance and isn't crushed instantaneously by Palp Aces invincible ship bull or U-Boats wiping their ships.

 

 

Well, for some of us, it's not a matter of tournaments being too restrictive, but rather tournaments simply not having anything to offer (I speak in general, not specifically for X-Wing).  I mean, why pay extra money to play a few rounds of a game I could play casually without an entrance fee?  Unless the tournament has excellent prize support, what does being in a tournament really get me apart from more pressure and a higher chance of running into poor sportsmanship (from losers and winners)?  

 

Some people enjoy the more structured events and pushing themselves to be as great as they can possibly be.  Some of us don't.  To my mind, rather than wasting resources trying to entice those of us who aren't going to enjoy tournaments no matter what you do with them, that effort should be spent making sure the people who already like them are getting the best experience they can get for their money.

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It's not a huge deal but I have noticed a clear divergence here. Some people are all about the competetive scene, others only care about casual play, and then there's people like me, somewhere in between. Anyway there just seems to be some flack that gets thrown around fairly regularly, from discounting lists that are meant to be casual, or claiming that competetive less thematic lists ruin the game. My opinion is it's just a game and I love both types of squads. But seriously, why the flack? I just don't see why the passions need run so high when we are all just sharing thoughts on a hobby. I don't know, it's just my crazy opinion for the day.

Some people prefer to just play the game and not have to worry about getting screwed by matchups or OP broken ****.

Some people apparently don't like the competitive, "cut throat" atmosphere that they perceive comes out of tournament play. See: Intentional draw fiasco. The My Little Pony thread in the off topic forum has what, 15 pages now? Yeah, they want the game and its community to be a hug box.

IMO, I think FFG could do a better job of winning casuals over and getting them into tournament play. Officially supporting the Top Gun format for example. A format where a new player at least has a chance and isn't crushed instantaneously by Palp Aces invincible ship bull or U-Boats wiping their ships.

 

To be fair: Top Gun has been out for, uh, how long now?

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Trying to get casuals into the tournament scene is entirely the wrong approach. It's like, the opposite of what FFG should be doing. What they should be doing is acknowledging and supporting the large chunk of their player base that simply isn't interested in tournaments.

 

Heroes of the Aturi Cluster is exactly the sort of product that FFG should be putting together.

 

I wish FFG had never said "this is the standard game" and instead simply said 'games can be played at any size, but we find games between 50 and 150 points to be a good balance between complexity, choice, and time.' I honestly don't think there'd be anywhere near the level of homogeneity in the types of games played if FFG hadn't promoted the 100 point game as being the standard, and they'd allowed/encouraged tournaments to be played at a range of points levels. That simple change would have promoted a lot more diversity in the player base.

 

I've often contrasted 40K tournaments to X Wing ones. 40K has a lot of problems, but one of the things they get right is their tournaments. They're played at a range of points values, and every battle either uses one of the 12 official scenarios or uses home-brewed ones. There's no such thing as a 'standard' game and so the difference between a casual and a competitive game is purely attitude. Whereas in X Wing anything that deviates from the 100/6 tournament format is no longer competitive, bar a handful of other tournament formats that are also strictly defined.

 

Now, this results in a bit of cross porpoises sometimes, as 40K players often have to guess how seriously their opponent wants to take the game (or simply plunge into it with no regard for their opponent, but that's no recommended) and due to the horrific imbalances in that game that can result in some pretty hurt fee-fees when someone brings their tournament A game against someone who just really likes to play their fluffy, themed army. But even still, that's better than all tournament players presenting a united barrier to casual gamers and simply refusing to play at all, which is often the case with X Wing. You either play 100/6, or you don't play. It can be really hard to get people to abandon the 100/6 format even for a single night. And besides, the X Wing rules and points are much tighter than 40K so the fluffy vs tournament lists gap is smaller in X Wing than it is in 40K.

 

I think a lot of the hard feelings between casual and competitive X Wing players comes from the fact that it can be really hard, as someone who prefers 'different' ways of playing, to get a game at all. The overwhelming majority of players only play 100/6 and have no interest in playing anything else. 

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Well actually...

 

It's perfectly normal to get miffed when you blow an easy move or flub a critical dice roll.  What?  We're supposed to have some kind of filter so that other people don't get offended?  Yeah, okay. 

 

I hate this brush that competitive players get painted with, as if every one of them is a big bawling man child who nerd-rages at the first sign of calamity.  That's not true any more than the notion that casuals are all hug-lovers.

 

Here is a suggestion; stop looking for the stereotype and look for the person.  You know, maybe buddy guy is mad that he lost at X-Wing because he had a rough day.  Maybe that person is going through some emotional stress and their stress relief turned into more stress?  Maybe the guy flying Trench Run really just wants to make friends because he doesn't have any?  If you judge a person by how they play a game, or by how they react to success and failure, then what makes you so much better that you can pass that judgement? 

 

Really, all this should boil down to one thing.  Games are a way for people to come together to share common interests and they provide a stage for social interaction. Interaction of this kind allows us to test our compatibility with others and can form the basis of friendships, if we so choose.  There is no line in the sand.  I mean, come on guys, it's literally tiddly-winks here.  Just because you're incompatible with someone socially doesn't mean anything.  It certainly doesn't make them any more or less than anyone else.

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Cant FFG do different "weight" classes? Like a 60pt, 80pt, 100pt.

Maybe even perhaps a rebel tourney, imperial tourney, and scum tourney. Top from each faction, go into a playoffs bracket.

Could even do small ship only championships, large ship only. Two ship championship.

Then worlds can be all the champs from their regionals in the different tourneys being invited. Kind of like an Olympics of xwing.

Just make the 100pt match the main event to keep it as the "standard" gameplay.

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My personal feeling is that the division between casuals and competitives is almost exclusively an artefact of us belonging to an online community. In real life, you quickly figure out who plays like you and you naturally group together. In this forum, players of many backgrounds and preferences are all coming to discuss the game they love. That's beautiful! The trouble is that we are not always specific about our comments and our generalizations. This leads to misunderstandings that can get heated and we start to see a divide.

Example: Someone says Scyks suck and you should never take them. Someone else disagrees, having flown Scyks in many lists to great effect. This second person disputes the first statement, perhaps feeling a little affronted and maybe feeling that "Scyks are bad" = "you are bad if you fly Scyks." What happened here? The first poster was specifically commenting on the tournament format, but since that's all he plays and all he thinks about, he didn't think about specifying that. The other player often plays 100/6 format, but enjoys flying a different squad every game and is more interested in experiencing pilots and upgrades than he is in a solid win:loss ratio. In his world, Scyks have done amazing things, but he hasn't rigorously faced the same tough squads over and over again.

Another pet peeve of mine is the notion that casual play is not worth discussing. Some people think casual means you make up whatever rules you want and proxy whatever you feel like. I enjoy experiencing the game more than competing, but I play by the rules (barring the occasional free-for-all) and I very rarely proxy. People like me want to discuss certain combos and situations because we love the game, but we don't want to be told, "Don't bother with ship X; it's garbage and you should always use Y instead." Yes! We know! We may be casual but we're not stupid! We're just trying to experience more of this game than the top tier squads.

I think these misunderstandings drive the apparent disparity on play styles.

Edited by Budgernaut

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Hy,

 

I think there is one reason for "casual" players that hasn't been stated yet. It is the simple fact that not anyone has access to torunaments ;) - but thats not the point of the thread I think.

So - the major difference can be read several times before my posting - at least for many. In tournaments you almost have to play the best lists to stand a chance approaching as far as possible. But this is only true for those that join tournaments and really want to win something. But not all players are like that. Some just want to have fun in tournaments or don't know anyone else playing X-wing and want to play. Or some even might want to get to know other people around also playing the game they love to be able to play against them even outside of tournaments. Any place where people with at least one shared interest is a place where friendships may be born. Players like that might fly casual lists as well as "competetive" lists - yet I wouldn't call em "tournament" or "causal" players since they might be both.

The difference of casual and competetive is just in our mind - there is no real frontier. In the end always the dice decide who wins. You might even have continous luck and win a whole tournament by picking a fun-only-list whilst you may also loose in round one to a total beginner even when playin imperial Aces when just not being able to get good dice-rolls. Sure - experienced players use to modify dice as often as possible putting in as much synergy as possible and using Palp but still a few rounds of bad dice may devastate your whole squad.

 

I play both - competetive and fun lists .. and combinations of both. And all those lists are fun playing.

 

This discussion is pretty old already. It has come up at Magic the Gathering quite a while ago and all arguments can be read there...and they are pretty much the same. In the end there is just one important thing: When playing X-wing you should play it to have fun! And when you have fun at playing tournaments or casual or both just do that. Don't let others tell you what is wrong or right - just enjoy playing.

Edited by shadowfriend

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I will say though, I do favour the 100 point format the most because I feel like this is the real balance point of the game.  This is what the designers envision when they create rules and ships and such, and it's proven to be popular and pretty representative of what we all want in X-Wing.  I also think that the missions and scenarios FFG has made are all really cool and well thought out and yes, I do wish I got to play more of them.  But should we start expecting different formats of X-Wing?  Well aside from TIE Tighter, an X-Wing Expansion TM, I don't think FFG should worry about any of that and focus on what is proven to work.  Designers work within the context of the 100 point match and seek to balance things so that it all works out for this level of play.  Haven't you ever been in squad builder and clicked together a list and thought to yourself how well it all seemed to mesh together points-wise?  Well there is a reason for that and it's because FFG assumes you will be playing a 100 points or less match and designs accordingly.  If the designers had to work into the equation how a new ship played at a variety of point levels I don't think we'd have such synergy as we enjoy now.

 

About tournament play attracting new players...  I absolutely am in favour of getting more people into competitive play.  However, if we want more people at tournaments and more people playing X-Wing at official events like Regionals, then we have to host more of them.  If FFG wants to see more new players attending events, then they should perhaps try to cater to that more than by simply stating the format for casual tournaments in a .PDF. 

 

As well, and I hate to say it but if FFG wants to seriously interact with their customers and prevent these internet born misconceptions about types of gamers then they need to start moderating their official forums more closely and doing a better job at keeping discussion focused on X-Wing relevant topics.  That lucky sod who got Imp Vets already, that is a worthy post.  The Gunboat thread is a worthwhile thread.  Threads that attack people based on anything X-WIng related or otherwise should not be tolerated.  Why?  Simply because this is the official site.  This is where every single new player is going to come to find info or to talk shop, first and foremost.  Unless that player has an account with another website then they will probably just head on over here and start with the source as it were...

 

But here we are an unmoderated mob of malcontents, maligning the very marrow of the matter in the most malicious of manners!  By which I mean to say; we scare off new players with our wild speech. 

 

We need someone with a yardstick to keep us in line. 

Edited by Darkcloak

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I will say though, I do favour the 100 point format the most because I feel like this is the real balance point of the game.  This is what the designers envision when they create rules and ships and such, and it's proven to be popular and pretty representative of what we all want in X-Wing.

 

The horse has already bolted, but I firmly believe that the 100 point format enjoys the favour it does PURELY because FFG supported it as the official format. If they had instead endorsed 125 points as the standard, I don't think we'd have seen the community developing an alternative format at 100 points.

 

should we start expecting different formats of X-Wing? Well aside from TIE Tighter, an X-Wing Expansion TM, I don't think FFG should worry about any of that and focus on what is proven to work.

I also STRONGLY oppose the notion that FFG should focus all it's efforts at developing the tournament format game and not bother with anything else. There is so much scope and range in the Star Wars universe, the constant focus on the 100/6 format by FFG and so many players is both frustrating and disappointing.

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well my local group is very nice and welcoming, but they are rather competitive. it's not too common we have casual games, usually it's league or tournaments every week. when I started, I was happy I was able to play a couple of games with a guy who only plays casual at our store, instead of jumping right into league play. nowadays I am happy to play competitive. 

 

we have new players joining all the time, but it seems to me it's a little daunting for them because they mostly just lose. you can't be a brand new player and win competitively unless you have a talent at x-wing. OK perhaps our store is an exception since we have a lot of regional champions and world-level skills. however, if you stick to playing even if you lose, you're bound to improve playing such strong players. one of my colleagues at work came around a couple of times and he has stopped, I think he just doesn't enjoy the competition and prefers to play at home with his friends.

 

one thing I like is that most of the players are friendly even if competitive. to keep the competition in the mat, but the "casual" sociable attitude as soon as you lift your eyes off the mat, it's important to keep a local group of players having fun.

Edited by XBear

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It's not a huge deal but I have noticed a clear divergence here. Some people are all about the competetive scene, others only care about casual play, and then there's people like me, somewhere in between. Anyway there just seems to be some flack that gets thrown around fairly regularly, from discounting lists that are meant to be casual, or claiming that competetive less thematic lists ruin the game. My opinion is it's just a game and I love both types of squads. But seriously, why the flack? I just don't see why the passions need run so high when we are all just sharing thoughts on a hobby. I don't know, it's just my crazy opinion for the day.

 

Only thing that is bad for this game is sense of entitlement coming from some of the casual players. Tournament players don't care what list you bring, don't care how you play the game and what you find fun in X-Wing. They find fun in rivalry and don't try to force upon their view of this game on others. Competitive players are the most tolerant of all X-Wing players. 

Also I don't understand what is wrong in criticizing posted squad lists. The whole point of posting lists is to hear opinion of others. If you are competitve player this criticism can be valuable, but if you are casual gamer and you feel offended that someone criticise your list what was the point in publishing said list in the first place? To hear some empty, useless words of appreciation with no real meaning? After all if you are casual gamer it doesn't matter what list you play - as long as you have fun. What is the point then in asking people about your list?

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I will say though, I do favour the 100 point format the most because I feel like this is the real balance point of the game.  This is what the designers envision when they create rules and ships and such, and it's proven to be popular and pretty representative of what we all want in X-Wing.

 

The horse has already bolted, but I firmly believe that the 100 point format enjoys the favour it does PURELY because FFG supported it as the official format. If they had instead endorsed 125 points as the standard, I don't think we'd have seen the community developing an alternative format at 100 points.

 

should we start expecting different formats of X-Wing? Well aside from TIE Tighter, an X-Wing Expansion TM, I don't think FFG should worry about any of that and focus on what is proven to work.

I also STRONGLY oppose the notion that FFG should focus all it's efforts at developing the tournament format game and not bother with anything else. There is so much scope and range in the Star Wars universe, the constant focus on the 100/6 format by FFG and so many players is both frustrating and disappointing.

 

Well yeah, if they has started out at 125, or costed everything cheaper or whathaveyou, then that's what we'd play.  That kind of goes without saying.  Look, I'm not saying can the missions, or don't do anything else.  I'm saying that I think X-WIng is okay where it's at and that they can and should pursue more tournament play.  But I'm also still in favour of missions and fun stuff too.  I guess I didn't explicitly say that though, so I guess that's my fault for not being clear.  I do love the missions that come in the kits and I want to see more of that.  But that is also because when FFG designs those missions they start with "standard X-Wing" and work from there.  There should be a standard format, and there is one and it's 100 points.  But that's simply from a design perspective (or so I surmise) and not entirely restrictive.  You can in fact play X-WIng however you like and it's still loads of fun.  And didn't the just post an article claiming to be more invested in casual gamers? 

 

Also I should point out that the TIE Fighter, an X-Wing Expansion TM is an idea I had inspired by someone on here about doing a proper X-Wing 2.0 rules update.  Only it wouldn't be a rules update and no one would have to buy anything except one book and it would be an almost totally different game, more in depth and with custom player pilots and missions and experience tables and whatnot... Think Star Wars RPG meets X-Wing meets Necromunda meets AD&D. 

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From my experience; most of the people I've met at tournaments have been very "Fly casual" and have a great attitude to the game and event. They turn up to play a game they enjoy all day and meet others with the same interests. As we step up into Store champs and above levels; I do feel it changes slightly. At stores you start to get the occasional WAAC player creeping in who doesn't want to have a laugh and will crush new players with no mercy. Sure, I get that they've paid to enter a competition and want to win; that's their prerogative and I bear them no ill but it does change the atmosphere of an event. Step up to regionals and nationals and you will find a few more of these types of player. It's part of the territory and, frankly, to be expected. IMHO; casual and competitive play overlap a lot in the lower levels of competitive play and the higher up you go the more people are on their A-game and out to win. You can CHOOSE to go to the bigger more competitive events or not. i don't think it excludes people; it just slowly blends into a situation that appeals to different people.

 

In terms of format; it can be hard to find a game that isn't standard 100 points, especially when its competitive season, so many people want to practise with their lists for regionals etc. Locally we have seen a big decline in attendance for standard 100 point dogfight tournaments. I do think a chunk of the player base is a bit bored with it and we've started looking at alternative formats, including a sealed/draft event, that have been attracting a lot more interest. To me this shows a lot of people do find constantly playing 100 pints to be stale.
 

There are plenty of alternate formats out there. HotAC, Top Gun, Hunger Games, Hanger Bay, missions, Epic etc. You just need to snap people out of the same old habit. Take the initiative and organise something at your FLGS or club and you'll be surprised by how many more casual players come out of the woodwork to join in :)

Edited by Smutpedler

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In my area we have a shop that the TO runs different rules each month for the tournaments, and usually the winner gets to pick the special rules for the next month. Some examples are 100 pt squads with free EPT's, 117 pt squads but have to have at least one ship from each faction. It bridges the gap between competitive and casual play, and really brings out the jenk of the game.

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Only thing that is bad for this game is sense of entitlement coming from some of the casual players. Tournament players don't care what list you bring, don't care how you play the game and what you find fun in X-Wing. They find fun in rivalry and don't try to force upon their view of this game on others. Competitive players are the most tolerant of all X-Wing players.

 

That's simply untrue. The players you describe and the opposite of them are found under every banner.

 

 

What I find puts people off tournaments is this:

 

  • Access. Not everyone can get to tournaments easily.
  • Time. Tournaments tend to be long affairs you invest a day in.
  • Stagnation. It's simply not fun for a lot of people to play against the same "in lists" over and over.
  • Atmosphere. Some people don't like the pressured atmosphere created by victory mattering. That's made worse with a "cut-throat" player who wants to win very badly and will use every legal tool at their disposal.
  • Skill. A lot of players would rather play players at their level than go to a tournament for a day of losing.
Edited by Blue Five

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Only thing that is bad for this game is sense of entitlement coming from some of the casual players. Tournament players don't care what list you bring, don't care how you play the game and what you find fun in X-Wing. They find fun in rivalry and don't try to force upon their view of this game on others. Competitive players are the most tolerant of all X-Wing players.

 

That's simply untrue. The players you describe and the opposite of them are found under every banner.

 

I've heard way more passive-aggressive BS about how and what other people play from 'casual' players than the serious competitive guys.

 

See: this thread and complaints about how everyone plays a standard format.

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Only thing that is bad for this game is sense of entitlement coming from some of the casual players. Tournament players don't care what list you bring, don't care how you play the game and what you find fun in X-Wing. They find fun in rivalry and don't try to force upon their view of this game on others. Competitive players are the most tolerant of all X-Wing players.

 

That's simply untrue. The players you describe and the opposite of them are found under every banner.

 

I've heard way more passive-aggressive BS about how and what other people play from 'casual' players than the serious competitive guys.

 

See: this thread and complaints about how everyone plays a standard format.

 

I'd say "new around here huh?" but your post count indicates not. This makes me unsure as to how you're missing threads pretty much based on complaining.

 

I'm not going to point fingers at threads and people but how you're missing it but getting angry at fairly innocous posts with people saying they'd like to play other formats more is beyond me.

Edited by Blue Five

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