Thursday, April 28, 2011

Thoughtful Thursdays - Hobby ADD

My hobby...

What is Hobby ADD?  Well, I touched on it very briefly here.   Now let's take a look at what exactly it is, how to avoid it, and how to even find more fulfillment in your hobby because of it. 

First of all, have you ever known someone that just can't seem to stick with an army?  I am not talking about owning more than one army.  I am talking about buying an army, painting one or two models/units, then selling or trading that army for a different army.  Or, perhaps this individual actually plays a game or two with his or her army (which is almost certainly unpainted.) then decides, "I've had enough of army 'X', I am going to try army 'Y', they look better anyways."  If so, then perhaps you have known someone with hobby ADD. 

How do you avoid hobby ADD? 

Choosing an army to stay with…

Well, first and foremost, read. Don’t buy something that you think “looks cool”.  Before you obtain anything for an army, you should read up on it.  You can read store copies of the codices at Games Workshop stores in the US at least, or perhaps borrow them from a friend.  If you do end up having to buy them, at least you can know your enemy, then sell them.   (Not like you can't find digital copies online, but you didn't hear it from me.) If you can't seem to pull yourself away from a particular Codex, and keep going back to it, then it is probably for you. But before you commit to that army, ask yourself the following quesitons;
1.)      Does the army offer a big variety? 
(In terms of both tactics and units.)

2.)      Does the army have a large number of models that will require a LOT “repetitive painting”?
(For example, Imperial Guard where each Gaurdsmen is the same color scheme.)  If it does, then I am not saying the army isn’t for you, just you may have to come back here to look up one of the Hobby ADD solutions.

3.)      What do I like best about this army? 
This includes everything; models, tactics, etc….
Once your army is picked out utilizing the above method, you start to build it, and perhaps paint it, or play with it.  Now comes what I like to call “the danger zone”. 

The Danger Zone is when you have had said army for less than a year.  Once it has been over a year, either you like the army, or haven’t done anything with it.  If it is the latter, than it is perhaps time to look into selling it and re-reading “Choosing an army to stay with” above.

What happens in “The Danger Zone”?  Well here are some examples, along with solutions.

1.)      Boredom with playing a game.  Every army has a bit of a learning curve, don’t give up with it until you have at least 10 games under your belt with said army. 
2.)      Painting fatigue – remember the above question, does this army require a lot of “repetitive painting”?  This is why.  The answer to this is actually quite simple.  Break up your painting schedule.  Paint a large unit of Troops, and as a “reward” paint that vehicle/monster that you have had waiting.  If that doesn’t work, and you are just adamant on painting “something different”, then trade some bitz for one Troop model from a friend’s army.  (An alternative is to just buy a model that is not part of your army, but the trick is to save money.)
3.)      “Stale” Hobby – Don’t know where to go with your army?  Just plain “bored with it”?  Read some old fluff.  Nothing has sparked my interest in Orks more than reading some of the older stuff that I didn’t know.  If you have been around since Rogue Trader, re-read it. 
Check out some other people’s creations from the same army.  (Google image search is your friend.  In search bar, type “ <insert army here> conversions”  ie, “Imperial Guard conversions”
Play a different game for a while.  Sometimes the way to prevent boredom with something is just to leave it alone for a bit.  True, I am bored at work, and I can’t leave…but that is why they have vacation.  (Or holiday for our European friends.)

Ok, so there you have it, now go out and live an enriched hobby life!


  1. I have a litmus test for hobby ADD detection:

    Have you started an army, sold it to start a different army, then go *back* and start the first army again within the span of one army book/codex release for that army?

  2. I am naturally prone to hobby ADD and tend to manage it by rampant theorising. I'll write background, paint a few test models, write up a whole mess of lists, and buy as little as possible, and if I'm still interested in a year's time I might actually consider going ahead with it.

    The problem, of course, is that I seldom come to major projects with that initial rush of enthusiasm, without which carrying myself through the entry stages of a project (painting the first thousand points) becomes laborious. It's one reason I prefer games that scale down well; painting four models to get started is vastly preferable to painting eighty-odd.

  3. I find that projects for different games also helps avoid painting fatigue for me. I also like to do one and done(from other armies or games) of larger models for treats.