Back in the days of Epic, our group was fair sized. 8 people. That number dwindled as they always do. In the end, what killed off our war gaming wasn't the attempted shift to Epic 40K, but the loss of fresh opponents. And no matter how often we happily retreat to our favorite edition of rules - a game goes stale without a fresh blood.
My local shop, Heroes and Games, is a good store. 10 tables to play on. Pretty lively. We even have a tiny group of Epic players who are allowed to bring in armies to play. But - only on slow days. Events are all bound around current rules. This is the rub everyone feels. No matter how faithful you are to your favorite edition of any game - a new opponent will be as rare as a falling star and you will have to go and find that opponent.
We are here because we like to compete. Win or lose - Playing is what matters. Every lose bitter, each win euphoric - especially if snatched from the jaws of defeat. And every rehash of the game, a battle in itself. Do you go home, knowing that while your army lost, you beat the guy because he didn't know how he won? Luck is fickle. Strategy is not.
AoS takes that away unless we capitulate, pay $125 for a beginner box, $75 for a hardcover book, and begin again to purchase new models, because it does not matter if the old models are allowed to play. There will come a time when you're square based pride and joys are quaint, when you are view as cheap and dated. Or even worse, barred from the tourny for being non-reg.
My thoughts on changing? After yesterday, when I went down to the store to find out what was the deal with AoS - I come to find out the whole system was Squated. Three armies now worthless for anything more than nostalgia.
WFB will go into my pile of out-of-print games, some of them great, and the wife and I will turn away and find camaraderie and fun elsewhere, because from where we sit, GW seems pretty close to Squating itself. We will be patient and see if AoS is WFB reborn or if its Necromunda.
Tossing in the towel? Sort of, but not really. We'll take a 'wait and see' approach. After all, I did buy the wife a Tyranid Codex a couple years ago.