Thursday 29 May 2014

Assault at Imdaar Alpha

This weekend I'm off visiting a friend, Gaz, in Edinburgh.  As far as we've arranged, the agenda consists of lots of junk food, beers and games.  Looking forward to getting away from the 'Deen for a while and relaxing for a couple days.

On Saturday we've both signed up an X-Wing tournament at the Games Hub (which I've been to, but can't remember where it actually is.)  The tournament is part of the Assault at Imdaar Alpha event FFG are running to promote the next wave of releases for the game.  Hopefully we'll get a chance to break out my Tantive IV at some point too.

Tournaments aren't really high on the list of reasons why I game, the last one I went to was over two years ago, but they are a nice distraction and a good opportunity to get some games in against new people.  I've still not decided on what kind of squadron to field there, but I'm leaning towards a Moldy Crow/twin B-Wing list; it looks competitive, not too cheesy and kind of fun.  I'll try and take some pictures, but they'll just be with the phone as I've apparently lost my camera!

Sunday 25 May 2014

Two New Babies

First off, a big congrats to my regular gaming buddy Adam and his wife on the birth of their new baby errr... no name yet, lets just say little baby B!  Very happy for all four of them, their cat counts as a person doesn't she, even if it means less gaming in the next few months (Me? Selfish? Never!)

Speaking of new arrivals, here's my latest addition:

About the same size as and tons more fun than a tiny wee pooping machine (only joking!)

The Rebel CR90 Corvette "Tantive IV" for X-Wing.  Most famous for the opening scene in A New Hope, the Tantive IV is in all three films, most notably getting swarmed by TIE Interceptors in Jedi.

It's an absoutely lovely mode, the paint job is on par with most of the recent X-Wing releases i.e. excellent for a pre-paint.  There's some lovely detailing work and it has a the usual weathered feel to it.  I can't deny being delighted by the fact the gun turrets swivel!  

I haven't even had a chance to look at the rules yet, something about energy and multiple attacks and destroying any other ship whose base you touch.  Nice! There is a mini-campaign booklet in the box, which is a suitable addition.  In Epic Play (the X-Wing rules where you can actually use this ship) the minimum points level is 300, a lot of points, but the scenario book pits you against a relatively small number of enemy ships, decent enough given the RRP of the Tantive IV!

I'm away visiting a friend in Auld Reekie next weekend; a fair bit of gaming should be involved and this guy is certainly the first thing I'll be packing!

Friday 23 May 2014

I'm Back Baby.... Errr, Again.

Well, I guess that's long enough without posting on here.  To get the touchy feely stuff out of the way, life has simply been a little too stressful the last couple months to keep my normal routine, not just for blogging, but for a fair few other things.

The quick version is that I legally agreed to buy a house with my Mrs last year, but a few days after that she decided she didn't want to stay together any longer.  We couldn't get out of the house buy and neither of us wanted to live in the house on our own, so it was a very awkward and stressful twelve months.  Thankfully, March saw a lot of potential buyers view the place, we eventually managed to agreed a sale and it went through towards the end of April.

For the last couple weeks I've been enjoying the modest luxury of not worrying about the place (every time there was a strong wind, I was certain the tree in the garden would blow down through and go through the kitchen window!)  Still, the whole experience was pretty rough; lost a lot of money, had to leave my felis catus behind and it took a long time to come to terms with starting again at my age, but, thankfully, I think I've managed to get past that point now.  While I'm talking about this, I'd like to throw out a quick thanks to all my internet friends on the blogoshpere and elsewhere for their support (even if they didn't necessarily know they were offering it!)

Right, that's enough of that.

Managed a reasonable amount of gaming lately, obviously not enough though.  Played some FoG with the guys at the club; still an enjoyable game, but doesn't really grab me anymore. Scott at the club also ran a Romans vs Britons game using a new (to me) ruleset, the name of which escapes me.  A lot of fun, plus the fact that Scott doesn't run small games made it an enjoyable evening.  I also tried the Star Wars LCG by FFG, looks like a game with a lot of depth, but I'm waiting to find a regular opponent before I drop much cash on it.

I've also been on a bit of a buying splurge too; a ton of games have been added to the pile lately, notably:
  • Sentinels of the Multiverse.  This is a fixed deck, co-op cardgame which sees a group of superheroes joining forces to fight an evil supervillain.  The game itself is phenomenally simple, the rule book contains almost no rules, rather it just goes over the turn sequence and clarifies exactly what the different terms used mean. Instead, all the actions and abilities in the game are on the various hero, villain and environment cards; the game can be taught in literally less than five minutes. Sentinels is also supremely replayable, I have the base game and one expansion and have yet to play the same combination of heroes, villains and environments twice.  Lastly, the game doesn't use any existing IP; instead all the characters are original creations and it's very enjoyable reading the humorous fluff for each one.  My favorite hero so far is Fanatic, a crusading angel smiting her enemies, while the most entertaining villain is Baron Blade, a mad scientist determined to crash the moon into Earth!  An outstanding game.

  • Star Trek Attack Wing.  Right, here's the issue.  I already play and love X-Wing. ST:AW is essentially the same game... with worse models... and poorer quality cards... and with some fairly broken combinations.  So, what's the appeal?  It's STAR TREK BABY!  Yeah, I'm a fan boy, so even though the whole experience is less satisfying than X-Wing, it's still Klingons against the Dominion and that's just full of win.  I just received the first Borg ship in the mail today (Borg Sphere 4270) and, ooooh, tiny nerdgasm, Borg Cutting Beam, Seven of Nine, Regenerate, what's not to love!

  • Malifaux Second Edition.  A blast from the past this one, I was playing Malifaux not long after it's original release a few years ago.  A very thinky skirmish game, but also a lot of fun.  Sadly, the game suffered from far too many errors, erratas and updates and I ended up bailing on an otherwise fine game.  The last game I played involved us using the original rulebook, the errata, the faq, the new rules sheet and the pdf of the updated cards, simply too much faff to enjoy the game.

    I'm glad to say that M2E is a much better set of rules than the original, cleaner explanations of the key mechanics, less clutter and much better presentation. It's also been an excuse to pick up a couple of the new plastic Crew boxes LadyJ and Ramos and get some modelling in (I will get some painting done soon, I swear!)

I'm still pretty addicted to Android Netrunner, the most rewarding game I play with any regularity, but we're really struggling to get any kind of community together in Aberdeen.  Online, I use OCTGN whenever I can, so if anyone out there plays A:NR and uses OCTGN, feel free to get in touch (my username is Vladdd309.)

Been churning through the books recently too; I've adapted to reading three books at once now, based on what format (physical book, audiobook and Kindle,) compared to two (one factual and fiction.)  I listen to an audiobook on the commute, read the kindle in the house and a regular book everywhere else, especially the bath.  Currently reading the original Foundation trilogy by Asimov, forgotten just how good it is.  Expect a few Two Minute Reviews to follow soon.

It's that time of year again, the IPL is back (coom on the Kings XI!) as well as the Giro.  A few more weeks and I can start pretending again that I like tennis, then it's the Tour and the golf.  Not enough hours in the week!

Lastly, on a complete impulse, I bought a PS Vita in March.  I'm a Xbox fan, but haven't been able to either use the 360 I have much nor pick up the new console.  My laptop isn't up to playing a game so the Vita has been a godsend.  Notably, Killzone Mercenary has just been eating up the dead hour between ten and eleven at night and Wipeout is just as great as it was back in 1994!

Anyway, thanks to those of you have stuck around to read all this.  I'll try not to leave it so long until the next post!  S.