Thursday, 28 February 2013

So was I being a little rude?

I'm away with work for a couple days, down to Edinburgh. After the second day of management babble and corporate speak, I had a wander down to a gaming shop I'd found on Google. After all, I was really bored and wanted to get rid of some cash!

Black Lion is an old fashioned wee gaming store, about the size of my livingroom, near the university!  With a fair mix of board, card and roleplaying games, it's waaay more well stocked than anywhere in aberdeen.

After blethering away for a bit to the guy running the store, he mentioned they had just recieved the next X-Wing wave, but that he couldnt sell me them until the next day.  Now I don't think I was being rude, but I had a bash at persuading him to sell me some for cash, but there was no budging him.

Needless to say, as the course finished early I had time to pop down and pick up a couple boxes today, so I feel a hit less guilty about badgering him yesterday!
Itching for a game of X-Wing now.

Also, is it a bit rude to ditch the collegues you've spent two days with already, simply because you can't be arsed speaking to them on the train home?

Btw, I'm posting this using the Blogger phone app. It was working fine until it failed to publish and deleted the first draft and pictures!

Tuesday, 26 February 2013

A Weekend Off

Is anyone familiar with the phrase "society is only three meals away from anarchy?"  Well, this weekend, I could have adapted it to "I am only one woman away from adolescence "  The Mrs was away visiting her sister, so I was obliged to have some folk round, get some pizzas and beer in and generally overindulge.

Not entierly a write off hobby wise, I slapped some more paint on my GZG 15mm figures and started some terrain to go with them.  It's been a really busy, but surprisingly positive week, but my overall painting time has really suffered.  BTW, if you don't see him posted by next week, can someone remind me to finish the Samurai for Curt's Painting Challenge?  I'm nowhere near my points target, mainly because sci-fi doesn't count, but I want to get Curt's Ronin off to him.

On the plus side, I finally got round to catching up on a few movies; Dredd (decent, really liked the actor playing Dredd, effects were spot on,) Prometheus (what am I missing here?  Fail to see what all the fuss was about) and Ted (really? Nice set up, but a bit too safe for my liking, a real missed opportunity.)

Lastly, I finally managed to complete the final Shadows of Mirkwood quest in the Lord of the Rings LCG.  It's only taken seven months to do (they're really hard, honest,) but it means I can finally start on the Khazad-dûm expansion.

Thursday, 21 February 2013

Gruntz Game 2

Another trial run of Gruntz at the club this week.  Both my and Adam's forces had a bit more paint on them this week, although terrain was still at a minimum.

This week, we added in some sci-fi gubbins to our vanilla forces; Adam had some spider drones with shield generators (Phantom Menace anyone?) and some speeder bikes (ok, he's taking the piss with the pseudo Star Wars stuff now.)  I, on the other hand, picked a quad mech and some support heavy weapons.  This game demonstrated just how poor individual units of Gruntz can be, while how devastating template support weapons can be.

A typical Gruntz unit card, pinched off the net.

Both our forces, although similarly organised, are evolving in different ways.  I have a light infantry force with conventional weapons, tracked armour and piloted mechs, whereas Adam has gone for medium infantry with lots of Grav and AI/Remote support.  I originally wanted to have a core of five light infantry units, but I honestly don't think I'll ever use more than three.  On the other hand, I'll certainly need a few more support options and some heavy infantry to support what I already have. All our current models are by Ground Zero Games and, considering the amount on the table, are great value.

Statistic boffins might be interested in the key difference between our forces.  Both forces have Veteran Shoot values of 5, to hit an opponent, roll 2D6 and add their skill value, hoping to at least match the target's Guard statistic.  As my guys are light infantry, they have a Guard value of 13, so my enemy will need an eight on 2D6.  Adam's medium infantry are only Guard 12, so I'll hit them on a seven up.  To kill (or Wax) an enemy model, the attacker rolls 2D6 and adds his weapon's Damage value, 5 in both our armies, needing to match or beat the enemy's Soak value. As his forces are more heavily armoured (13) I need an eight on 2D6 to Wax a model, however as my force is more lightly armoured, Adam only need a seven on 2D6.  So that's sevens then eights or eights then sevens.  According to my rudimentary stats calculations, I'm coming out just ahead on probability (as well as on the table!)

Sunday, 17 February 2013

Ground Zero Games UNSC - WIP

Following on from our trial game Gruntz, I've been hunched over painting 15mm sci-fi figures.  I opted for the fantastic UNSC range from Ground Zero Games for my force.  The range has eight poses for standard riflemen, four separate unit leader figures and plenty of SAW/support weapon options.  Sculpt quality is very good on the whole, only a couple issues of flash on some overhangs, so overall very flexible range.

SAW, two riflemen and two leaders.

For a colour scheme, I had in my head a white/icy blue scheme with a contrasting visor colour and a spot colour or insignia marking.  As you can see from the WIP pics, I haven't decided on what colour to use on the visors or the weapons.  Red would probably look good, but it's the safe option, so I suspect they'll end up with a glowy green colour, maybe yellow.  Still undecided on the gun, but that can wait until the rest of the colours are done.

Oddly for me, I've really enjoyed painting these guys.  Although they haven't yet turned out quite how I imagined (the shadows are dark grey rather than blue, giving them a kind of Stormtrooper feel,) I'm still digging them.  The trick I always find when evaluating your own painting is, when you're not actually painting,   keep the model a couple of feet away from you.  That way you see the overall effect rather than each individual brush stroke!

The Commander is on the right, can you tell he's a head swap?

I've also painted one of the older UNSC hardsuit figures as my commander, but swapped out the original helmet to keep him uniform with the rest of the force.  Converting 15mm figures are a pain. Next up is deciding and painting the visors and weapons, then the arduous process of deciding how to paint the bases.

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Rogue Trooper Kickstarter

So the Gates of Antares Kickstarter has been cancelled.  Can't say it's a huge shock, despite a flurry of publicity and updates, they were nowhere near their financial goals.  I found the fundraising process quite interesting and I looked forward to the regular updates to come through.  In particular, drip feeding the miniature designs was intriguing, especially when going back on the images and seeing the final sculpts take shape.

The cancellation was also rather poorly timed, as the D6G put up a rather good episode featuring Rick Priestly.  I'm sure we'll see a revised Kickstarter project soon and I'm sure I'll back it again.

Of course, that frees up some future funds for another project.  Enter Rogue Trooper!

I was a rabid 2000AD collector back in my youth (and still pick up the occasional comic) and RT was always an excellent read.  Mongoose have already done a successful Dredd Kickstarter and seem to know what they are doing with the RT one.  They have a very different model for their project compared to GoA, very low pledge total with a very small product range (two boxes.)  The juice is in their hope of reaching their "stretch goals" meaning they will make a bigger range of models.  Things look very promising so far, the Skorpion tank has already been made available and the funding target has already been met twice over already.

Check out the Kickstarter page and have a read of the draft rules, sounds good.

Thursday, 14 February 2013

A Wee Update - Gruntz and Excuses

Whew, where the hell did the last week go?  Although I try to post here every three days or so, this last wee while has just been crazy.  In my defence, I've spent a fair of time either preparing for or actually gaming, so I can't really complain.  Other excuses for not posting include, in no particular order:

  • Some amateur plumbing (I've fixed the noise but at the expense of a tiny leak.)
  • A ridiculous hangover (seriously, I know I'm not 21 any more, but this one was taking the piss.)
  • DIY (the Mrs decided that the bedroom simply HAD to be painted this week!)
  • Visiting the relatives (this one was actually quite enjoyable, seeing the oldsters in Perthshire.)

Well, aside from those, what else?  Well, we decided last week to stop messing around and get started on our 15mm Sci-Fi armies and try a quick game of Gruntz.  I've had the rules for a wee while now and both Adam and I, along with a couple others at the club have been keen to get a game in.

So on Tuesday, we sat down for a very small test game.  Our two semi-painted forces faced off over some anachronistic terrain and slugged it out as we figures out the game's basic rules.  Being both Warmachine veterans, the core mechanic (two D6+stat to beat an enemy's stat) wasn't a problem and we were both after a bit of flavour to add to the game.

With another game scheduled for this Tuesday, I've got a few more units to start, as well as all the other unit to finish.  I'll get some pic of my core units up soon, then some of the fancier bits of kit after that.  Unfortunately, I've slowed up a fair bit on my Analogue Challenge stuff, but I hope to get back on them in the near future.  Until then, laters.

Friday, 8 February 2013

Battlefront European Village Bundle

The postie turned up with a heftly parcel today, one I really wasn't expecting; the next batch from Battlefront's European Village subscription deal.

Battlefront changed the release schedule recently from their original plan (one house per month) to increase the supply of their buildings.  The subscription deal could have easily sold two or three times the initial offering, judging by the earlier grumbling on the FoW forums and some crazy prices on eBay.  That alone makes me glad it took up the offer.

So this release has the next two houses; Cherbourg and Dieppe, as well as the two expansion kits, walls and house extensions, and a blister pack of villagers.  First things first, the paint jobs on the latest two houses is a vast improvement on the first four.  I wasn't particularly bothered by the initial quality, taking a little time to tidy up the houses wasn't that big a deal, but these two look outstanding in comparison; better coverage and depth on the main colours, tidier roofs and much neater painting all told.

The expansion sets are to the same standard and are a nice, flexible set.  The villagers comprise six vignettes, including some nuns, a couple at a cafe table and a couple ladies of the night (charmingly, one has a gendarme telling here off, while the other has a gent doffing his cap to her. Quality.)  Not sure how much use I'll get from them, but it's an enjoyable wee set.

As I recall, Battlefront never explicitly said whether the extras were free or not, so I was delighted to see that the credit card was only charged for the two houses!  Result.  Still to come are six more houses, the Bastogne church and whatever else they come up with.  I'd still like a duplicate house to make a terrace building, but I can cope without for the moment.

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Hopes Raised and Dashed - Venexia

My third entry to the Analogue Painting Challenge went up yesterday.  Some leftover figures from my Italian Wars project.  I found these, based and primed, lost down the back of my desk. Having already painted two units of these, a quick afternoon's painting later and they were done. Lovely figs, lots of detail and outstanding casting quality.  Even if I do say so myself, I think the yellow and blue livery looks great!  Readers may remember that Venexia decided to close down and sold their range to another company.

After they went up on Curt's blog, the frst comment suddenly grabbed my attention. Mr J directed me here on the assumption the range was now available.  Now I knew that Sgt Major Miniatures had taken the Venexia ranges, but I've not seen any sign on the figures on their site.  The last email I received from the owner didn't give any indication of when they would be available and I've not seen anything.

After going through every catagory on their site, I'm fairly certain that they're just not there.  So that sadly means no resumption of my Italian Wars project, for now anyway.

BTW, if I'm wrong, can someone please point it out to me!  I'd quite happily look like an idiot on the internet if it meant that this range of figures were available again!

Friday, 1 February 2013

Convergence of Cyriss - Warmachine

New Warmachine faction on the horizon - the Convergence of Cyriss.  Art-Deco, Clockwork robots, lots of metal to paint and some new mechanics thrown in.  No mention of how and where the fit into the Warmachine universe, but I'm sure find out more soon.

Initial thoughts? Mostly positive, like the look of the new warjacks, but not entirely sold on the paintjob (but that may be because I hate using metallic paint.)  Also, gamers are going to shorten the faction name to CoC.  Hmmm.

It's good to see PP not resting on their laurels and continuing to expand their game base, but, obviously, I'd have preferred a fifth Hordes faction before a sixth Warmachine.