Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Never being Boring

Hello people,

So, after the qualified triumph of Yavin / Expo as a bit of variety I've been dabbling elsewhere, which is allowed under my self imposed gaming restrictions as I haven't spent any money. Nor will I.....honest :)

Nigel recently picked up Warhammer Quest: Silver Tower and has played a couple of games down at the club. I jumped in for a game last week and it short was really impressed. There are plenty of reviews out there, here's Beasts of War two pence, so the main contribution that I have to make is that it FEELS right. Simple mechanics, depth to tactics plus a need for co-operative play versus the random event studded scenarios.
Production quality is as high as you would expect and the figures are gorgeous, the otherwise overpowered grim-dark fitting very nicely, though I still can't get on with the Celestians. As much as anything the game actually fits with, what I remember as, it's original ethos. It's not often that this gets said but WELL DONE GW. Ahem,....

All of this is just as well as GameZone's HeroQuest 25 version is apparently still under production as well as 18 months overdue. What seems to be lacking is any form of recognition of that issue. Gears will grind slowly I'm sure...... (grumble)

Speaking of slow grinding gears, it's almost like it's deliberate, Rich ran me through TANKS, Battlefront's new game commanding a tank platoon. It looks like a kind of Flames of War lite but it's actually a boardgame, just on a 3x3 tabletop.
Nothing wrong with that but maybe you should make that plain. Rich referred to it as WWII X-Wing which isn't too far off as you have a 100 point platoon of variously pointed tanks that you can equip with Ace abilities and various other crew, equipment and ammunition. Movement is template based, combat decided by attack an defense dice with critical damage causing extra effects. Topping everything off is a numerically rated initiative system.

So WWII X-Wing. It's good fun, once again simple mechanics allowing depth of tactics. As much as there's the room to be gamey genuine tank platoon tactics still have thier place.

Both good games in thier own rights, there's plenty of them out there. Meanwhile I'm slowly getting back to some casual flying,Dengar to the max! Elsewhere it's an entire weekend of Netrunner on the cards, ahem, with Dark Sphere's Regional Saturday and Gaurdians of Tyr Sunday. It's been a while since I've played regularly so I've got a bit of learning curve to re-climb.

Happy Days :)

Sunday, 5 June 2016

Battered, Bruised, Triumphant!

Morning people,

Far too late a finish yesterday to post. Apologies as I know you were all waiting with great expectation ;)

Long story short I went 3-3 which is better than I expected but slightly dissapointing as I slipped from 3-1 with bad match ups in the final two rounds. No spangly shield tokens to take home with me but plenty of Mojo which was always biggest thing.

I've obviously been trying a bit too hard recently. In 11 competitive games I only had one difficult opponent and I still won so yah boo. Elsewhere I played and beat various Jumpmaster lists more times than I lost to them. Throughout I back relaxed into my natural game again and flew far better for it.

Overwise it was another excellent X-Wing event, the biggest in the world so far and a genuine privelige to be a part of.

Naturally we talked a lot of shop during the event. With the obvious explosion of X-Wing there's a much bigger field of good players out there. Events are bigger, longer and far more competitive. Lady Luck's fickle fortune feels magnified alk the way through from maych up to how the dice fall. This is quite obviously a good thing for the game but the competitive scene has definitely morphed in a different beast, far more muscular and attritional rhan it has ever been.

For myself I've had a great weekend gaming but I'm shattered. No Hanger Bay for me, I won't be able to do it justice and I don't want to kill my buzz.
I'm off to the Expo itself to remind myself again why I love being a geek ;)

Friday, 3 June 2016

Expect the Unexpected

So, despite my apocalyptic predictions I actually had a pretty good day.

Opening game of the day was triple Jumpmasters. Not so good. Settling down I got stuck in, leading with Oicunn. Despite forgetting Issard and my Ion Bomb I traded Oicunn for two of the Jumps and played the patient game to grind out the win. First time against Jumps. Big grin :)

Second game was triple Jumps again, the result not quite so good. Third was 8 Zs, the fourth Imp Aces against an excellent player and a good buddy. I was competitive throughout to go 2-2, the Aces game being one of the best I've played for a while.

Back in the groove with Mojo fully restored I went in to the fifth contemplating dropping to regroup for tomorrow's main event. The accompanying mental lift cost the game but provides a final lesson for the day.

Walked away with a Hera card and fully recharged X-Wing battery.

Tomorrow's going to be a good day, whatever the result ;)

Sunny side up?

So, yesterday's trip up was delayed a touch but no-one died so all good.

The hotel is fine, I consumed a particularly good double burger and most importantly we picked up all of our event tickets and found the gaming hall. This year it's been upgraded from sweaty marquee to actual bricks and mortar with air conditioning which is a big deal. Definitely still shorts at the ready.
The biggest concern remaining is how robust event logistics will be. It's not a lack of trust in the organisers, more that we've been round the block a fair few times ourselves. 450 odd gamers tomorrow will be interesting.

Major bonus so far has been the programme which has been put together with a decent number of proper articles as well as all the usual info.

Having discussed my recent gaming woes at length on the trip up it has become clear that I simply need to get my mojo back a touch so that's the main objective for the weekend. I'd also like to get a decent look round the main event 45 as that didn't happen last year at all. I'm fairly sure ove got some free time Sunday morning ;)

Anyway, breakfast!

Wednesday, 1 June 2016

Hope vs Expectation

Hello people.

So its the eve of Birmingham eve i.e. a third Regional followed by the Yavin Open most likely followed by an afternoon of Hanger Bay.

Currently I'm most looking forward Hanger Bay. Primarily this is because I've realised that Oicunn / Soontir is a mis-step away from the meta and though it can probably hold its own against Imperial Aces I'm seriously up against it anytime I encounter Jumpmasters. In fact anything I've been flying recently probably fits that bracket.
I can't deny that I have a feeling of impending DOOM. It's been a bit like that recently so my strategy is to drop any expectations what so ever and just concentrate on flying as well as I can.

Once the weekend is over I'm going to detox by playing the Scum lists that I've been meaning to for a while now and not worrying about anything else.
Slooping back to Hanger Bay one of my lists will be just that: Dengar / Boba Boat / Feedback Z. The boats are just about finished up, really really pleased with them :), with  Zuckuss not too far behind. Hopefully they're going to be the highlight of my weekend. That's the expectation.

Soontir and Oicunn have also received fresh paint to match Vader and the Fo TIEs. Hopefully I can do them some justice.

I'll have a go at posting every night but it'll be rough and ready via phone app.
Strap in people, it's going to be a bumpy ride ;)

Sunday, 29 May 2016

Playing the System

Hello people,

It's all been a bit overly X-Wing recently with an escalation league at the club and a third Regional and the Yavin Open up at Games Expo in Birmingham next weekend. Add in a bit of life and anything else has taken a definite back seat.

As such I went looking for some Netrunner yesterday to get me back into the game properly. As is so often the case there were clashing Spring Kit events at Dark Sphere and Lost Ark. In honesty Dark Sphere was always gong to be the bigger more competitive field but I just needed some games and I always enjoy Lost Ark. A slightly improved chance of coming hone with some alt art was also a factor ;) It also turned out that I had rail replacement on my line. Hindsight justification ;)

Rocking up it turned out I was half of the field for the day. Not an issue say I, more than happy to sit and play some games for the day. Unfortunately my opponent wasn't so keen. He was playing Teir 1 decks and didn't have too much issue seeing me off. After that he was more bothered about his swag and didn't fancy sticking around. To me that's all sorts of wrong in all sorts of way, at best pretty disrespectful to all involved,especially Lost Ark.

Picking up a couple of datapacks I chipped off with an alt art Leela and Political Operative. I don't buy alt art but I hardly feel like I "won" these. Sorting out various piles if cards I'm going to put together a Gang Sign / Leela deck I've seen about to kick myself back into action.

Positivity from negativity.....

Sunday, 15 May 2016

That's the Kicker!

Hello people,

As I've banged on about previously I try and strictly limit my Hobby these days in the names of efficiency and effectiveness, which at times seems to be contrary to the point but does actually reap positive effects the vast majority of the time.

Fairly obviously this hasn't always been the case and despite various purges of recent years I still, as we all do, own a pile of games and figures that might have hit the table once or twice before being relegated to the eponymous Lead Mountain (of Shame).

KickStarter has been a regular temptation for many. Having dallied I have successfully weaned myself away from this Pagan of False Promise preferring instead to hold to the Old World notion of paying and actual shop for actual product. Heresy I know!

One of my previous "investments" was Heroquest 25 run by GameZone, originally on KickStarter only to move to a similar Spanish platform after various IP issues. I followed and laid out just over £100 for the full monty. 16 months later I've just received another e-mail from the Spanish platform,  who have been excellent, as a result of a vote regarding how to take the woefully delayed project forward. In short GameZone are going to asked to submit to a full audit of the project as they haven't been overly forthcoming recently.

Like Monday's cat I, and many other backers, have been "Hanging on in there" with few options to do anything else. Imagine then my multiply mixed feelings when GW announced the re-release / reimagining of Hero Quest........

Yes there is a strong element of sour grapes here. As I've previously blogged I've moved away from GW as much, if not more, than they've moved away from me. I feel that they deserve praise for making the kind of seismic changes that they have, whether you agree with then or not. The recent move to nostalgic big box releases is sensible business, especially as entry level product.

That in itself is rather besides the point. I backed Game zone as an alternative to GW and as a hark back to my "golden age" of gaming. Hindsight is a wonderful thing :)
So, another lesson or two driven home which is just as well with Blood Bowl and Adeptus Titanicus on the horizon. I never had Titanicus as a kid so surely that one's allowed ;)

Hmm, back to X-Wing :)