Friday, 24 September 2010

Intelligent Auto........

... that's the function on the camera that I had managed to turn off!

The difference when it's turned on is quite remarkable as demonstrated below. With my ineptitude taken out of the equation I've been snapping away with abandon of a non-wild nature.
Twas D&D last night and as you can see Jon had put in a lot of effort with floorplans for the Deurgar FORTRESS OF DOOM!!

I then promptly ruined his plans by bluffing our way in, obtaining the relevant information by deception and then arguing with / convincing the rest of the party that there was no need to take on the entire garrison.

Boot on the other foot and all that but I did, briefly, feel suitably guilty despite reminding myself that this had happened to me more than once!

So, having deftly avoided all of Jon's efforts we continued on our quest to rescue a bunch of slaves by establishing their route of march and ambushing the guards.

As shown above they were well guarded at least until a flurry of critical hits by the majority of the party saw them off in short order.

Big points to Jon here for not resorting to forcing the party's hand as GM. It all goes a long way to creating the "illusion of choice" so critical to a well run campaign, which this is! (Abject grovel).

Meanwhile I've finished up the Dwarven element of the Bullz BB team. That's another 18 PPs in the bag! Though I've done more work than usual with construction / conversion of the figures the nature of the paint job has been fairly simple so it all balances out.

I do need to finalise names / markings but as I'm away to Turkey for two weeks on Sunday I intend to seek inspiration there. Once back, the Line-Slaves await.

A nice two week break for us all then :)

Monday, 20 September 2010

Return to Form

Saturday was Wasps' first home game of the Season at Adams Park and always like to get to that one.

Hosting Leicester we were still looking for our first win of the season and to add extra spice I was going along with one of the missus' mates, Olly, who's a Tigers fan.

To be honest, I wasn't too confident about this one and being 30-18 down at the half left the smirk with Olly, especially as the Tigers had already cliamed the four try bonus point.
I won't bore you with the details but the second half was a different game with Wasps scoring 19 unanswered points to send the stands into rapture and Olly jokingly threatening to make me walk home!

An excellent game. I just hope the The Brajhd-Fjord Bullz take some notice as, unsurprisingly, they currently prop up the league after the first round.

Paint wise, the Dwarven section are coming on very well. It was the usual slowly, slowly to work out the specific coulour scheme but the final set of pre-wash highlights did the job magnificently.Purple and red seem a bit obvious but do a good job and once highlighted up should provide a nice focus for the most important feature..... the beards!!Still having camera issues with this chap but the paint job is working out....

One out of two I suppose :)

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Battered, Bruised but Unblooded

Q: How well did the first night of the Blood-Bowl 7s go for The Brajhd-Fjord Bullz?
A: A 4-Nil drubbing to Aaron's Lizardmen!

Now hold on a mo, I haven't had the chance to make my excuses yet :)

Due to the format of the league I started with my minimum 7 players, leaving a 120K big wedge in the kitty for "future development". So that's 3 Dwarves, 1 Bull Centuar and 3 Line-Slaves.

The opening turn or so was fine. This was my first time out with Chaos Dwarves and BB-7s is a very different game.

Though we expect to be getting in two games a night the lack of practice games really showed and so it was just one round last night.
A decent hit from a Saurus saw a Line-Slave badly hurt and a rush of blood saw me put in a foul with another only to get him sent off! Aaron duly scampered through the gap in my line for the opening score of the game.

I was very impressed by Aaron's large based ball marker (above) and unashamedly plan to steal the idea!

With my final Line-Slave knocked out and repeatedly failing to come round I played almost an entire half the game with just four players, all of whom had AG2In such a situation Aaron was always going to get the rub of the green and another 3 TDs followed. Game over man, game over!

On the upside, the Line-Slave returned just in time to complete a pass and claim the MVP thus gaining Sure Hands, which I'm sure will prove golden! I also generated just enough cash, the league rules keep cash tight, to recruit a second Bull Centaur.

More importantly nobody ended up dead or injured, so in all a classic "development" game. I just hope my luck improves once they're painted.

Elsewhere, I finally realised that I'd messed about with my camera and set the focal length too long. Doh!

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

Wierdy Beardys

Mornin' all!

It's 10:30am, so time for the 3rd coffee of the morning and a quick post :)

I was away at the weekend with the missus and a couple of the almost-in-laws around Ipswich. Get 'orf my tractor!!

Saturday we visited the Saxon boat burial at Sutton Hoo. The visitor's centre is particularly well done and well worth going round first before viewing the mounds themselves. They are after all just mounds and understanding thier background gives them a much better context.

On Sunday we went to Harvest festival at Jimmmy's Farm. Jamie Oliver's mate who has been busy saving the Essex pig at his farm in Suffolk!
Initially dubious, as a mixed festival of food and music on a farm, I was well impressed. There were plenty of different things to do and the day was pleasantly spent alternating between poking about, eating and lying about. Result!

Last night I finished all of the green stuff on my BB Chaos Dwarves adding long top-knots which nicely balance the baldy beardys. With green stuff I've learnt to layer up as necessary and that this creates more depth of detail. Seems so obvious to say but I'm really pleased to have improved another hobby skill :)

No photos, as for some reason I simply couldn't get any decent shots last night. Its the first round of the league tonight at the club so I'll put up an update tomorrow.

Additionally, I've still not received my goblins and will have to proxy Norse linemen for Hobgoblins, ..which gave me an idea! Empire Flagellants as slave linemen!! Order duly placed with GW.

IF and when I get the gobbos I may well do a team of them.... with Heresy Cyclops' as trolls!!!

Meanwhile, with the release of Isle of Blood I've had a bit of a scout on E-Bay and the mini rulebooks are going for about £15, which is £5 cheaper than I though they might be, and I still find myself failing to care.

Oh well, cest la vie.....

Thursday, 9 September 2010

D&D Social

Tonight's D&D session was somewhat limited as a couple of the guys got caught up with work, so we engaged in a different facet of the hobby...... :)

Having recently pinged up to fourth level the three players in attendance sorted out the requisite stat increases, with Rob poring over his Cleric spell list for an almost unseemly age, whilst discussing various skill combos........ NERDS!!

Having previous reached a plot-break we also under took a recce of the subterranean Deurgar fortress we've recently been led to and devised a cunning plan to con our way in. Hopefully the extra skill points I've put into Bluff will pay off.

Other than that it was Nerd-Chat covering the usual range of comics, films, computer games etc including The Boys, Capt America and Fable III, should anyone be interested.

It served to remind me that despite certain aspects of THE HOBBY being inherently solitary, social interaction, however basic, is a requirement of getting a game in and very often a big provider of the FUN element.

With so many forums and blogs in "the cloud" virtual interaction must be as prevalent as in the real world. A somewhat cheering thought given the natural barrier that is the undoubted social limitations of so many of our community :)

Meanwhile, here's a synopsis of our last session that was lost to my own musings:
Despite having more time on his hands than he might prefer Jon has put a huge amount of effort into his preparation of the campaign as this hand-drawn handout attests to.

"I would have done it anyway" he quipped "it would just have taken me longer." Well done that man! Pre-prepared floor plans that were well worth the effort once I tripped the trap and got the rest of the party surrounded by undead!

In my defence Jon, as reward, did set a Wight on me :( Then we worked through how Rob's Cleric'c undead turning ability worked and all but one Skelly duly returned to dust!

I still got to keep my new admirer, until Charlie put two arrows in him, whilst, to our great mirth, Mr C's Paladin repeated failed to put down the last bag of bones :)
To open the impressive set of doors that the Skellys were guarding involved solving a fiendish riddle.

I lead the charge to over-complicate matters, looking for clues that weren't there, whilst Ian went for the simple solution only to be proved correct!
Thusly was a big beastie revealed which, after my further attempts to over-complicate the task at hand, was soundly bested by stunning teamwork and/or luck.

Cue the "ping" of level-up all round and a nice wedge of treasure. Huzzah!!

Tuesday, 7 September 2010

Its Grim Ooop North.......

.....or so they say. Probably something to do with breeding flat capped whippets down pits,.... or something like that??

As previously threatened I've got some time in with the tools, rather than the brushes, and have completed the basic construction of all of my Chaos Dwarf Blood-Bowl players, 6 Blockers and 2 Bull Centuars. I've used OOP Confrontation slayer figures as they're simply "too cool for school" with placcy goblin bitz as required.

The lad below is my first attempt at scultping the requisite ring beards and i'm not too sure if it needs to be built up a bit more. Possibly bit of a confidence thing as its not my greatest hobby skill. I shall canvas opinion at D&D on thursday!
They are rather lightly armoured as befits their slayer status though this is where my overactive hobby fluff abilities ride in!

I present to you all the Brajhd-Fjord Bullz a Chaos Dwarf team from the Northern most wastes of the Darklands. Thier isolation and exposure to Norscan ways has lead them to abandon their heavy armour (and hats!) of thier southern brethern as part of a beserker cult.

Bareheaded Blood-Bowl would seem to be a natural progression!

I'm guaranteed a bit more time in thier company this evening but would welcome any ideas / feedback should any of you be good enought to throw some my way.

Touch.... Pause.... ENGAGE!!

Sunday, 5 September 2010

Back in BLACK!!

Evenin' all.

LIFE has been busy again and TOY action has been at something of a premium, which is a theme that's likely to continue this month!

On the upside part of said LIFE was this weekend's opening games of the now Aviva Premiership and the London Double Header, which I attended with the missus and the Dawe family. Excellent company!

Ian and I waxed lyrical that it no longer being the Guinness Premiership seemed wrong, Ian quipping that maybe he'd have a pie and six month's content's insurance at half time!

London Irish vs Saracens was the first contest and I was pleased to see Sarries actually playing Rugby rather than the kick and chase of last season. Something of a niggly game, with 2 yellow cards a piece with Sarries leading at the break as Irish made a slow start.

The second half was considerably livelier with Irish running through the gears for a bonus point win as Sarries crumbled under the pressure. An evil grin was required! The main event, for myself at least, saw the return of my beloved Wasps against those split-lip fancy dans, Harlequins.

A close, tense game from the off Wasps were the second slow starters of the day conceding a soft try in the third minute before being well in control at the break as Andy Powell scored on debut.

I was initially concerned by the selection with Flutey playing as a non-kicking 10 and Richard Houghton starting on the wing as a new, 1 year, signing from Sarries. I was quickly proved wrong with both having excellent games. Apparently we're having another building year but we came out to play good running rugby, which bodes well for the season ahead. Unfortunately a nailed on third try, which would have finished the match in the third quarter, was knocked forward and the final quarter bogged down horribly to the point where the crowd entertained themselves with and impressive Mexican wave.

Ultimately our penalty and error count was too high leaving Quins to produce one of their trademark comebacks for our last kick of the game to produce a draw!

Two points at least but, debatably, had we been more clinical it would have been four! Twenty one matches to go though!

Meanwhile, back in Toys-World, i've started work on converting up my Chaos Dwarf Blockers and Bull Centaurs. Mainly troubleshooting so far and finding some round bases but a couple of clear evenings should see a good result.

No gobbos through the post yet so proxies may be a necessary evil :(