I speak from experience, and these are some proven tips to keep Maddie interested.
- Forget CP entirely. It's very confusing for someone who has never played before, and it's not at all necessary. If you absolutely have to use it, just build a whole bunch of armies at the beginning and let her choose which one she wants, but never actually mention CP before or during gameplay.
- A lot of players don't fully understand the chaos of Brikwars. They would rather hang on to their precious, shiny, heroes as long as possible. When you kill Maddie's hero on the second turn of the game, she's going to be extremely put off. To counter this, I would suggest using resurrection rules (see below). That way when her favorite units die, she gets them back right away.
- Only a handful of game types lend themselves to resurrection rules, though. I suggest something simple like capture the flag. It's very straightforward and easy to explain.
- Keep the die rolls to a minimum. I know that some people (I'm looking at you, 4) like to roll all kinds of crazy dice to calculate the trajectory and damage of every bullet, but for new players you should use nothing but d6s. Try to get turns over with as quickly as possible so she's not waiting around for half an hour between turns. This is boring even to experienced Brikwars opponents, and is murder to newcomers. In fact, for her first few battles, use Quickwars rules only and introduce new ideas once she's really getting the hang of it.
- Throw the game! Don't make it too obvious that you're letting her win, but if you go around performing insane, hilarious, and incredibly dangerous maneuvers that are getting your troops killed left and right, she's more likely to pick up on the concept of a Brikwar a lot faster than if you treat everything like a game of Axis & Allies. Anorakism is not tolerated.
- Don't use technical mumbo-jumbo. Saying advanced words like "enhancement modifiers", "critical rolls", or "collateral damage" will just confuse and intimidate new players. Rather than saying something crazy like "my CC Halberd is 2H so it does 1d6+2 more than your 1H rapier", try "my axe is bigger than your sword so it does more damage". Just avoid acronyms like "UR", "CC", or "2d10+2" altogether.
- No secrets! New players that don't know all the ins and outs of Brikwars will always suspect you of making up rules as you go. If you throw down a bunch of die and kill their favorite ninja, it won't go over so well. Be sure to answer all of their questions, but also be sure that you tell them everything they need to know before a battle. Explain every possible advantage and disadvantage their units have before it becomes a problem. Example. Maddie wants all her knights to have swords because they're pretty, so you assign all your units giant flaming battle axes with laser scopes. You didn't tell her that your weapons do about 3 times the damage of hers, and so she starts getting annoyed later on when you're rolling all these extra die for yourself. This is the sort of thing you will be trying to avoid at all costs.
As I said, these are all tested and proven tips to successfully introduce new players to the game and help them understand that this isn't your ordinary wargame. Hopefully you will have lots of fun with your new opponent, good luck!
Last edited by Almighty Benny
on Mon Jan 14, 2008 5:15 pm, edited 1 time in total.