10 March 2010

To mini or not to mini

In my first attempts at playing D&D, I had a piece of poster board gridded off in one-inch squares, dominos to serve as walls, and some of the official AD&D Grenadier minis that my dad had bought me. (Those still make up the bulk of my minis.)

My first groups almost never used minis, though. I remember looking through a friend’s collection, but I don’t actually remember using them.

Until I moved and joined a GURPS group. Its advanced combat system really begs to be used with minis and a hex grid. Since, I’ve used them off and on.

I really like the idea of having a bunch of minis of the proper scale and Dwarven Forge or Hirst Arts dungeons. Or just cardboard heroes, sparks, and cardstock dungeons.

I like the idea, but I don’t like the reality. A lot of stuff to buy, store, tote, and organize. I could probably list more cons as well. In any case, part of my “back to basics” tendencies in recent years has included eschewing minis.

I’ve been wondering though: While playing mini-less works fine for me, perhaps—for some players—the lack of such a visual aid is a significant disadvantage.

So, I’m thinking of giving it another try. Just battlemat and pawns, though, to keep things simple. Also, I don’t want to use them simply as visual aids rather than as a minis game. I still plan to run combat in a more free fashion.

Inspired by GROGNARDIA: Minis and Me

1 comment:

Matthew James Stanham said...

I mix it up a bit, and sometimes use cardboard floor plans and counters to represent the non-player types, whilst players usually supply their own figures. It makes for a break from the usual imagined space, but on the whole I prefer to play mainly without.